Episode of the Week: Hide and Q

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Captrek, Oct 2, 2012.

  1. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    Ineptly handled is too much praise for just how banally Riker's God powers were handled. And yes, one of the problems was that the episode was struggling just to be better than Plato's Stepchildren, while not even in the ballpark with the other TOS episodes you mentioned. Yet another TNG 1st-seasoner that gave me white knuckles, making me worry that the show wouldn't survive to see a second season.
     
  2. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Pretty sure the show had already been renewed by the time this one aired. :techman:
     
  3. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Totally absurd episode. No way a Human being gives up the powers of a God. No way.
     
  4. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Um, Picard actually does acknowledge that in the episode: "What he says with irony, I say with conviction..."

    And I don't know why it's so shocking or repugnant to hear him talk about how special and noble humanity is, or to suggest we may one day evolve to become something better. That's kind of the central message of the series!

    Nor was he suggesting we would become literal gods and angels-- only that we would become like them in spirit (although they've encountered enough energy beings over the years who HAVE evolved from humbler forms, so it's not exactly a new concept to anyone in this time).

    And I don't see any inconsistency with his reaction to Riker either. His concern was that Riker (and by extension humanity) wasn't yet ready for such powers.
     
  5. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    I'm sure I didn't know that at the time during first run.
     
  6. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Close to it, assuming we’re limiting the discussion to TNG. I’d put H&Q ahead of Qpid and roughly on a par True Q, behind Encounter at Farpoint, way behind Deja Q, and way, way, way, way the fuck behind Q Who?, Tapestry, and All Good Things....

    Where would you draw the line?

    Perhaps more to the point, Riker used the Q power to resurrect Worf and Wesley earlier in the episode. Picard says that situation was different because Worf and Wesley were put in a dangerous situation by the same entity trying to tempt Riker. It strikes me as a weak rationalization.

    Whoosh. I was making a joke related to current events. Perhaps it isn’t very funny, and it certainly isn’t funny if I have to explain it, so don’t worry about it.

    It’s a decision meriting more substantive debate than we get in the episode.

    The good guys lose if Riker joins the Q and the good guys win if Riker rejects the offer, but why? What’s at stake? The Q want Riker to join them so they can better understand humanity. If that happens, why would it be a bad thing? Might it not even be a good thing for humanity?

    The only clear stakes are Picard’s pointless wager with Q (Picard’s command vs. Q staying out of humanity’s way). Why do we even need Q out of humanity’s way? He put the Enterprise on trial for the crimes of humanity... and acquitted them. He interfered with the Enterprise on their way to a rescue mission... and manipulated time so they were not delayed. He’s never the cause of anything really bad except for the 18 people who die in Q Who?, and Picard recognizes that tragedy as a “kick in the complacency” that may be what the Federation needed.

    I blame Frakes, who is not a good actor in early TNG. (He gets better as the series progresses.) His performance in this episode is particularly bad, which is unfortunate because it’s Riker’s biggest role so far. I reserve most of my acting complaints for Crosby, who’s ten times worse, but Frakes’s performance here is lousy.
     
  7. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    This episode really seemed to be all over the place with no real purpose to it. Q's screwing around with the crew for a bit. Yar's just acting silly. Riker suddenly gets tempted with godlike powers before everyone rejecting his gifts for no real reason.

    Wesley gets impaled though. This is always good. :p
     
  8. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Let’s see.

    It’s a theme in early TNG, especially The Naked Now, that Geordi wants to have “normal” vision instead of VISOR vision. With his VISOR he can see more than we can see with normal vision, but says “More is not better.” Is less better? Why? I never understood what motivated this, and as far as I can recall the subject was dropped after H&Q (until Insurrection, whose existence I don’t like having to acknowledge). Maybe now that he’s seen what all the fuss is about, he decides normal vision is not so much better than VISOR vision, and “the price is a little too high,” which I take as a reference to the visual abilities he would lose going from the VISOR to normal eyes. I’m not sure what he meant by “I don’t like who I’d have to thank.” Did he mean Q, or Riker?

    Data is tougher to explain. In the pilot, he explicitly tells Riker he would “gladly” give up all his android abilities to be human. Here he is offered exactly that and declines. I have always considered it a weakness of TNG that it doesn’t really address the question of why Data thinks that being like us would be so much better than being like him. It’s not surprising that I don’t understand why he refuses the gift, because I don’t understand why he wants it in the first place.

    Wesley seems happy with his gift at first. Then he sees the adults (okay, an adult, an android, and an alien) decline their gifts and he does the same, so maybe he just figures it’s the right thing to do because they did, or maybe he was persuaded by Data’s “to thine own self be true” speech.
     
  9. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Admiral Premium Member

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    Davejames addressed this better than I could, but why can't I like two great actors going at it quoting Shakespeare. Told out of context or not, it was still an awesome scene.
     
  10. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    Because a few minutes later, the same man praises one of his officers for not saving a child. It's kind of difficult to believe someone who declares that humanity will one day become like angels and gods, yet finds the death of children perfectly acceptable without so much as showing any sign of remorse.

    And if this episode really wanted to go to the extreme in Riker using his powers to help others, he should have brought the child back to life with her parents there. Do you think that the parents of this recently deceased child are going to reject having their daughter back because they don't want to risk Riker, a person who they don't even know, from being corrupted by this power? I think something different would happen.
     
  11. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Like I've said before, pick up The Gift, it's a TNG Annual from DC Comics...
     
  12. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    You want me to give this episode credit with a non-canon comic that was made after the fact?
     
  13. Ghrakh

    Ghrakh Captain Captain

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    What exactly is a "responsible" way? Something like seen in Superman comics?
     
  14. Jeyl

    Jeyl Commodore Commodore

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    I would see Riker's understanding about everyone not wanting their gifts and restoring things to what they were to be responsible. I still don't see how that means he should flat out reject his power. When you learn to use something in a responsible manner, why throw it away?

    I would have liked to have seen this episode actually delve into that discussion on how someone would want to use these powers in a responsible way. But instead of getting that, we have our main heroes resorting to opinion based absolutes to say it's wrong.
     
  15. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Above average bc of Q but definitely some wonky lines throughout.
     
  16. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well to be fair, this wasn't any old power, but the "Power of the Q." It's possible Picard felt there was something much more corrupting and insidious about it's use-- and considering Q's behavior towards them, I'd say that's probably a safe assumption.

    And indeed, Riker does very quickly start to develop a massive, Q-sized ego.
     
  17. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

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    This was pretty much another character becomes a god episode. I would say it was average.

    The only difference here is that the human character doesn't turn insane and try to take over the ship or kill everyone like Gary Mitchell and Charles Evans did.

    I still don't think the writers realized the chemistry that De Lancie and Stewart had with each other yet, and the nice contrast they had to each other as characters, the trained diplomat and the childish god like being. They didn't really start focusing on it until the next Q episode.
     
  18. Captrek

    Captrek Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Picard doesn’t act like much of diplomat in this episode.
     
  19. Nightdiamond

    Nightdiamond Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I liked this episode because Q was always a favorite. He was also more sinister than in the later episode, so he was more threatening.

    But the whole 'become a god, have a morale dilemma, solve it all within a day' thing was silly.

    Riker saved Wesley and Worf who definitely were killed in Q's little game.

    Riker points out why was it any different with bringing the girl back, and bringing Wesley and Worf back.

    Picard says it's because they were killed in a fantasy created by Q. Should that really make any difference?

    I think Picard and crew were too used to death and loss of life they encountered on the job.

    There was no soul searching, and at the end it was set course for wherever with the usual smile.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2012
  20. MikeS

    MikeS Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Where No Man Has Gone Before and Charlie X are far superior moral tales about power and corruption. I can see what they were after with this but it falls flat. Patrick Stewart quoting Shakespeare is the highlight - as already pointed out Picard notes that "what [Hamlet] said with irony, I say with conviction".