Inner Light and other alternate reality episodes

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by The Squire of Gothos, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. FFunctionalData

    FFunctionalData Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I wonder how it would have played out if say the probe affected Worf or a Vulcan?
     
  2. thesadpanda

    thesadpanda Commander Red Shirt

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    I don't think it's mind rape. I mean, it's a little questionable to force someone to have these memories and experiences. But I don't think it's unreasonable to say, "Hey, can you spare 20 minutes of your time to remember our civilization now that we're all dead?" I mean, it's hard to be angry it, when you put it that way.

    As for the pointlessness of the scenes that snap back to the Enterprise -- I disagree. Those scenes had a very important role of defusing the suspense in the episode. You can't have your audience going through an episode like this wondering what's going on and if Picard is in danger. They did the same thing in "Far Beyond the Stars" when Sisko had a small vision first and then it flashed back to the station so Bashir could tell us that Sisko's brain is behaving the same way it did the last time he got visions from the Prophets (in "Rapture"). These episodes aren't about rooting for the character to get out of the visions, they're about the audience getting involved the drama of the new reality the character's experiencing.

    "Frame of Mind" is a good counter-example. It's about trying to figure out which world is real and getting back to it (and the twist is they're both fantasy). But if "Frame of Mind" was about exploring the dramatic possibilities of madness, you would want to let the audience know what was happening to Riker so they could stop wondering and enjoy the drama.
     
  3. The Squire of Gothos

    The Squire of Gothos Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The danger was all techno babble and just felt annoying, but I agree to a certain extent that there maybe a need to go somewhere other than to have Picard realise that it was a life within a life that he had just experienced.
     
  4. Mojochi

    Mojochi Commodore Commodore

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    It's easier, when you put it like this

    "Hey, can you spare 20 minutes to let us make you think you've been tossed out of your life, and stranded on a world to live someone else's life, where you have to become one of us to survive, only to grow old & watch the people you'll end up caring about die, or face extinction? Hey... look on the bright side. You'll get to go back with a shattered identity. What do you say? You up to it... Kamin? No? Too effing bad. Should've just fired on our probe"

    I'd be surprised if it didn't take him months just to get use to being called Jean-Luc Picard again. I wouldn't call it mind rape. I'd reserve that nomenclature for what Troi went through in "Violations".

    Troi got mind raped
    Geordi got brainwashed
    & Picard got mind fucked

    Maybe it's splitting hairs... but that's just my own opinion on how to describe it, but I still think it's a good episode
     
  5. kirk55555

    kirk55555 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I liked most of TNG's alt reality episodes (Yesterday's Enterprise is probably my favorite, it was an awesome episode) but I did not like The Inner Light. It might just be the most boring TNG episode. Not the worst by far, but the most boring. I just couldn't get into the story, and it was very slow. I've always thought it was one of the more overrated Star Trek episodes.
     
  6. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A very valid point. DS9 at least had O'brien out of sorts for a week after his traumatic experience, even if he went from about to kill himself to perfectly fine the next week. They could've had Picard take the next week off rehabilitating or something.

    As for all the mind rape accusations? Well it's a valid point. Picard had no choice, from his view his life was stolen and replaced by one of someone else's choosing. Sure it was well intentioned, but it was a violation. The only difference between this and Voyager's Memorial is that intent. The Inner Light's probe just wanted Picard to witness and live their culture so they'd be remembered. Memorial wanted everyone to live through their crimes so everyone would know what dicks they are.

    The Inner Light's rapist just turned out to be a nice fellow despite the rape. Whereas Memorial's wasn't. Don't get me wrong, Inner Light was a great episode(and Memorial wasn't), but it doesn't change the fact that they did violate Picard to the very core.
     
  7. Mojochi

    Mojochi Commodore Commodore

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    I also figure that it's the 24th century, so maybe rehabilitation is a lot better. Riker was back at it shortly after "Frame of Mind", & Picard after assimilation & Cardassian torture, & Geordi was doing alright soon after his brainwashing. We can just assume they know how to treat it better 300 years from now
     
  8. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Initially rehabilitation plays no part. Picard recognizes the bridge of the Enterprise within seconds of regaining consciousness . He doesn't speak to Will Riker as if he were someone he hadn't seen for thirty years. The "life experience" aspect of the alien download obviously begins to disappear immediately. Picard remembers elements of the story line he was exposed to, and is effect by it. But it's not like he personally lived thirty years off the ship and then return after that time.

    O'Brien continues to remember the time he spent imprisoned personally, the impression I received from that episode is that it would remain with him as an actual event in his life always.

    Picard realizes very quickly that the download wasn't real.

    Interesting way of putting it. Maybe like the guy who hurts women, but keeps his lawn nicely kept up.

    :)
     
  9. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    More like the guy who wants to cuddle with the rape victim after the deed. Picard then decided it was some good cuddling and overlooked the violation.
     
  10. Mojochi

    Mojochi Commodore Commodore

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    I'm not so sure. I mean, perhaps the readjustment might be lesser than say spending 30 years in a POW camp & being dropped back into your home

    But still, it's clear that even a year later he still remembers the notes to the song he learned in that "20 minutes". He apparently recalls all of the people & events of that encounter as if it was a 30 year period of his life

    Even that in itself would require some psychotherapy of some sort, even if to just cope with the grief of losing it & them. He is irrevocably altered from then on.
     
  11. Tiberius

    Tiberius Commodore Commodore

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    Given that the aliens were able to manipulate Picard's mind, it's likely that they'd also have the ability to make sure that he isn't significantly harmed by what happened...
     
  12. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

    How?

    How could they accommodate for every variation of humanoid, vulcanoid, klingonoid and every other -oid out there?

    The fact that they sent a probe with no manual, that was self-terminating and included only a flute shows me that these people weren't all that bright.

    Instead of putting their accumulated knowledge into something tangible they download a snippet of it into someone who will die at some point and the whole of their culture will die with them, except for the flute and a dead probe.

    It's nice in concept, but The Inner Light wasn't a very well thought out episode. In my opinion.
     
  13. Tiberius

    Tiberius Commodore Commodore

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    The very fact that it worked with an alien brain shows that they must have some kind of brain-scanning capability.
     
  14. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's science fiction... there are some things you just overlook. You may as well complain about things like laser weapons, faster than light travel, aliens that look like humans with funny foreheads and the fact everyone speaks the same language and understands each other. Brain scanning isn't that far out there.