Conspiracy - how would it have continued and how soon?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Nacluv, Nov 6, 2012.

  1. Nacluv

    Nacluv Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    IMO they should have at least made one episode about those alien parasites. And looking at the tone they ended this episode with, I am pretty sure they were considering it.

    However, I wouldn't want that to happen too soon. Rather somewhere between the 3rd or 4th season would have been a perfect time for learning more about these alien creatures.

    What do you think?
     
  2. Caligula

    Caligula Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Oh, there was DEFINITELY going to be a follow-up, and I really wish there had been as that was my favorite 1st season episode. "Conspiracy" unfortunately got such a negative reaction that they abandoned whatever future plans they had for it.

    Season 4 has a "family" theme, and the "Conspiracy" story arc doesn't really fit with that. Place it somewhere into Season 3 to really drive home the idea that the series is moving into darker territory, especially when you take "The Best of Both Worlds" cliffhanger into consideration. Just when you think one crisis is averted.... HERE COMES THE BORG!!!!
     
  3. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The DS9 relaunch novels put a pretty interesting face on the parasites.
     
  4. Surak of Vulcan

    Surak of Vulcan Ensign Red Shirt

    I concur with this.

    However, there was much potential in the Conspiracy-arc, and I believe that they were planning to continue it, but decided to ditch it for 'The Neutral Zone' idea, with the cities being scooped out. I believe that before the Borg, and correct me if I'm wrong, they were suppose to be insectoids or something.
     
  5. Nacluv

    Nacluv Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    You've got a point there. Generally, I always felt that Season 1, 2 and 3 had a darker tone and atmosphere. It got lighter and more dispersive in theme and tone around and before season 4.

    One things I liked about the first seasons that it felt somewhat more darker and not so much comedy to the same extent. But again, there is the question about veritable quality in all of the disparate areas.

    That's a dignitary idea of it taking place shortly before the showdowns with the Borgs. I cannot conceive it fitting well into Season 2 despite the cold tone. Although I actually like Pulaski (at least in the majority of the episodes), and that she's definitely not the reason I always felt that Season 2 felt the most different and distinctive.
    The tone of Season 3 feels like a melange, a bridge between the tone of Season 1 and Season 5-7.
    Of course Season 2 resembles Season 1 more than any other season but something about it makes it more different to the other seasons than even Season 1. In my opinion, "Where Silence Has Lease" and "Loud as a Whisper" were the ones who felt more like S1 episodes.

    I think the continuity (could be more than one episode) of these alien parasites would, at least in retrospective, fitted most logically into Season 3, like you suggested. Both the tone of season and the series still developing other elements during that specific period makes it congenial in time for that. Especially if the writers already had planned and arranged for the Borg to be the next threat.
     
  6. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Yep, that's right. The Borg were a substitute for the conspiracy bugs. I think I remember reading somewhere that the producers thought doing robots would look more realistic and be easier on a tv budget than giant insects.
     
  7. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    The big problem with following up on "Conspiracy" is that the parasites were soundly and decisively defeated. They had just this one chance, this one "quiet weekend at Starfleet Headquarters" during which to create a hole in UFP defenses and start an invasion, and they blew it.

    After the episode, whenever one of its ranks starts behaving suspiciously, Starfleet knows to look for the prominent gill-pipes that a regulation haircut will mercilessly reveal. The entire biology of the species would have to change for it to remain a credible threat. That is, for it to remain a credible sinister infiltrator threat, rather than a generic type of threat flying around in ordinary starships crewed by humanoids (who just happened to be dumb enough to get infested by the bugs).

    It seems that Data was incorrect in his analysis of the final message from the Remmick creature. It wasn't a homing beacon, it was an abort-and-retreat signal!

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  8. Reeborg

    Reeborg Commander Red Shirt

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    I still have not understood why that bug wanted to beat everybody up. They prepared the invasion ingeniously over months and then mixed it all up by this strange behavior. Maybe someone can tell me the sense of it? Until then this episode remains a stinker for me, one that, fortunately, was not continued.
     
  9. Nacluv

    Nacluv Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Probably those were some rebellious defectors! :lol:
     
  10. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I’ve had a couple of ideas for how they could have followed up on the episode.


    Idea #1:

    The Enterprise discovers a planet that is completely overrun by the bugs. With the exception of a small underground, the entire population of the planet is “bugged” and has been for generations. It’s the bugs’ adopted home planet, having had to abandon their own after a catastrophe. Just killing the mother and destroying all the bugs isn’t a viable option, because it means a whole planet full of people who have never made decisions or taken care of themselves and aren’t prepared to do so, in addition to being an act genocide. How do they handle this? As a practical matter, they may have to make a deal with the devil, allowing the bugs to keep half the population in exchange for helping the other half get back on its feet.


    Idea #2:

    The mother’s last words in Conspiracy are, “You don’t understand. We mean you no harm. We seek peaceful coexistence.” Then Picard’s and Riker’s phasers silence the mother, and the entire infiltration force, forever. Except for that mysterious transmission...

    The bugs turn out not to be as malevolent as they seem. There is some threat facing both the bugs and the Federation that the Federation doesn’t even know about. The bugs believed that this conspiracy was the best way to ensure the survival of both themselves and the UFP, and would have returned the hosts they “borrowed” once the need passed. That transmission wasn’t pointing a predator the way to Earth — the transmission has become humanity’s last hope.
     
  11. Ziz

    Ziz Commodore Commodore

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    How about elaborating a little for those of us that haven't read all 3,846 Trek books & comics that have ever been published?
     
  12. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Just count your blessings...

    The idea that the still rebellious Quinn did it in order to defeat the plans of the bug inside him is obvious enough...

    ...However, the bugged people were not ones for subtlety in any of their dealings. Say, they don't bother to tell Picard convincing lies at SF HQ. Perhaps Quinn was totally bugged and loyal to the cause, but thought that the best way to get Crusher bugged was to beat Riker to pulp, block his calls for help with his flag officer codes or whatnot, and then send a call of his own to the CMO to deal with the medical emergency?

    Yet this fails to explain two things. Why did he summon LaForge and Worf, too? And why did Crusher come armed, as if she knew there was more going on than a medical emergency?

    The idea of the bugs being benevolent and misunderstood is intriguing. Was it the bugs who killed everybody aboard the Horatio, or was it all due to a disproportionate response by the crew to the discovery that their XO (and possibly half the crew) was bugged? Did the bugs kill anybody else? Their phasers did not appear to be on particularly high settings at SF HQ, as they left no marks on the walls. Perhaps their "sinister" nature was all due to them being piss-poor at making their hosts behave and speak polite English...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  13. Green Shirt

    Green Shirt Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Or none of them. :devil:
     
  14. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Let me revise that.

    They're not benevolent, but they're not as malevolent as they seem. They do consider themselves a totally superior form of life and themselves entitled to use us when they need to. But their need for us is not long term, and when they're done with us they plan to release us back into the wild, so to speak. The bug in Quinn is a sicko who enjoys beating up animals and wouldn’t have this job but that he puts up a good front.

    As for Crusher's phaser, it was Geordi's.
     
  15. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Another thought: Picard says at the end we’ll never know how of them infiltrated Starfleet. How could the people who had been bugged not know? They can’t get an exact count because they don’t know how many were on the Horatio, for instance, but Picard seems to be talking about scale.
     
  16. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Oops! I've missed that detail for more than two decades straight now. :o

    So that leaves just one great mystery, the summoning of LaForge and Worf. Riker called for security, but security never arrived; no big mystery there if we consider the powers Quinn ought to have. But if Quinn called for Crusher to come examine Riker after the XO so inexplicably slipped and fell, why would LaForge and Worf rush down from the bridge - armed, but without mustard-shirted backup?

    Granted, they don't rush in with their phasers actually drawn IIRC. But while Worf seems to have a weapon at hand wherever he goes, LaForge wouldn't normally be carrying a Type 2 phaser. Plenty of places where he could have picked one up; little motivation for him to do so.

    In the end, we are left wondering what happened to the victims in general. We know Quinn is "expected to make a complete recovery", but perhaps that involves amnesia? We don't know if the people down at SF HQ died or survived (Remmick notwithstanding); Picard's worry would be justified if most of the victims met a grisly end, blowing up their starships or jumping off bridges instead of just "making a complete recovery" and reporting in with a hole in their memory. Starships blow up every second week: how many to blame on the parasites?

    Timo Saloniemi