Our new Craggus’ Trek Trek Phase II Omnibus – Vol.23 call plan comes with unlimited Data

Here’s your weekly Omnibus Edition of Craggus’ Trek Trek Phase II covering Season 7 episodes 4 to 10:

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#StarTrekTNG S7E04 - Gambit, Part I ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The Next Generation does #Blakes7 as Picard is missing, presumed dead and Riker leads the Enterprise crew in a galactic bounty hunt for a gang of criminals intent on gathering some seemingly harmless artefacts. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Although TNG never really mastered the two-part format, Gambit is a fun diversion, which often feels very unlike Trek and somewhat refreshing because of that. Of course, Picard isn't dead and it's not long before Riker joins the pirates too, posing as a rebellious and renegade Starfleet officer with amusing ease. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The villain of the piece, the dread pirate Arctus Baran is a David Lee Roth be-coiffed scenery-chewing villain who feels like he wandered in from a Buck Rogers reunion show or a Thundercats convention. It's camp, ridiculous and full of a swashbuckling silliness that just about works, plus it's nice to see Robin Curtis back in Star Trek - although how cool would it have been if she was playing Saavik? ⭐⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #gambitpart1 #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #robincurtis

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#StarTrekTNG S7E05 - Gambit, Part II ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Alas, the curse of the second part doesn’t spare Gambit and onboard the pirate ship, the number of secret alliances and double-crosses reaches a ludicrous number until the whole edifice falls down under the weight of its own complexity. Also, the galaxy-threatening weapon is eventually shown to be vulnerable to the kind of plot device that would normally be found in an episode of #MyLittlePony: think good thoughts. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The Data and Worf friction aboard the Enterprise is fun, though, and it manages to fill its forty-four minutes even if it feels like it really runs out of steam and eventually has to crawl across the finish line. ⭐⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #gambitpart2 #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #robincurtis

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#StarTrekTNG S7E06 - Phantasms ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Data has a literal Freudian nightmare. With mint frosting! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ On paper, this sounds like it should be one of the worst episodes of the entire run except it turns out to be a brilliantly surreal sci-fi psychodrama. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Filled with vivid and suitably weird imagery, it's a wonderfully off-kilter tale which, unusually for a Data story, gives the rest of the cast the opportunity to have fun with their characters (don't worry though, Season 7 has *plenty* of multiple Brent Spiner episodes on the way). The Patrick Stewart-directed episode is terrifically creepy too, and he's unafraid to lean into not just horror tropes, but borrow from slasher flicks too. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ The sci-fi elements of the plot concerning interphasic organisms is a good twist too, with Brannon Braga continuing to knock them out of the park at this point. Just three episodes ago the series seemed tired and out of energy but this episode proved that there was still some warp mileage left in the old dilithium crystals yet. ⭐⭐⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #phantasms #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #brentspiner #patrickstewart #drclementfreud #cellularpeptides #mintfrosting #cellularpeptidecakewithmintfrosting

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#StarTrekTNG S7E07 - Dark Page ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Kirsten Dunst stirs up some buried memories for Lwaxana as season 7 starts its slide into soap operatics in earnest. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ During a taxing mission working with the Cairn, a race who communicate telepathically but are learning verbal communication, Lwaxana Troi's behaviour becomes increasingly erratic until she falls into a mysterious coma. With no alternative, the Cairn help create a telepathic link and Deanna enters her own mother's mind in order to save her. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Mawkish, melodramatic and decidedly un-Star Trek, this tale of a sudden coma and the revelation of a tragic secret is straight out of the daytime soap playbook and it's a wonder Dr Crusher didn't bring in Dr Drake Ramoray for a consult. Although there's an interesting sci-fi idea in the aliens who communicate purely with telepathic imagery, it's sidelined in favour of an embarrassingly flimsy domestic drama. After her many highs and lows, it's a shame that this was Majel Barrett's last appearance on TNG (although the character - like many others - would find redemption on DS9) and her last appearance with her on-screen daughter Deanna. ⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #darkpage #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #lwaxanatroi #majelbarrett #marinasirtis #kirstendunst

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#StarTrekTNG S7E08 - Attached ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ With an allegorical subtlety that honours 'Let That Be Your Last Battlefield', Picard and Crusher find themselves caught up in a dispute between the two nation-states of the planet Kesprytt III, one of whom, the Kes, want to join the Federation while the xenophobic and isolationist Prytt want nothing to do with anyone. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Convinced the Enterprise is there to help the Kes spy on them, the Prytt intercept the Enterprise's transporter beam and implant both Picard and Crusher with a neural link which gradually lets them sense and share each others' thoughts for reasons which are never really explained. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ It's another case of an episode which sets up an intriguing alien premise then pushes it into the background to concentrate on character-driven emotional drama, this time bringing the Picard/ Crusher will they won't they into clearer focus, although it never actually resolves the situation (and #AllGoodThings further muddies those waters anyway) one way or the other. It's less maudlin that the previous episode, though, and buoyed by a lovely rapport between Patrick Stewart and Gates McFadden. It also sees the end of Picard's never-explained Captain's velour jacket which is discarded in a Prytt cave and never seen again. ⭐⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #attached #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #patrickstewart #gatesmcfadden

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#StarTrekTNG S7E09 - Force of Nature ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Having changed breed a few times, Spot has now changed gender and is apparently female. It’s time to acknowledge one of the darkest of TNG’s secrets: Data is evidently a serial cat killer who repeatedly fails to keep his pets alive and simply replaces them each time while the crew turn a blind eye. Have none of them watched #dontfuckwithcats?! It's a dark revelation that would have added a macabre edge to this overwrought but disturbingly accurate environmental allegory. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ It brings us a literal extinction rebellion which hammers home its message of ecoterrorism and environmental impact as two dedicated scientists use extreme measures, including suicide, to show the galactic impact of warp travel. In many ways, it's an uncannily prescient look into the real world climate change debate of 2019 from over a quarter-century ago. It's just a shame that it's wrapped up in a narrative solution that has all the skill and foresight of a Disney Star Wars script supervisor. ⭐⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #forceofnature #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #extinctionrebellion #environmentalism #climatechange

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#StarTrekTNG S7E10 - Inheritance ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ It's Data's turn for the soap opera rinse as he discovers that despite feeling alone his whole life, the galaxy is unfeasibly littered with Soong-type androids, some of which are far superior to him. We've met his brother, his grandfather, his daughter and his father, so let’s find out how Data met his mother why don’t we? ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Unfortunately, its something of a flat, cliched affair with plenty of tired 'embarrassing mum' sequences and while Data suspects something's not quite right with his ‘mother’ early on, the audience isn't really let in on his suspicions to preserve one of TNG's most absurd twists. ⭐⭐ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #StarTrek #TheNextGeneration #inheritance #CraggusTrekTrekPhaseII #StarTrekTheNextGeneration #brentspiner #fionnulaflanagan

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Tune in next week for the next Omnibus or follow @TheCraggus on Instagram to get Craggus’ Trek Trek Phase II directly in your feed. 🖖

 

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