Star Trek-A-Day: (Day 3) April 23rd: 2013. The Next Generation: The Inner Light

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-I had heard rumblings about this episode before, but while watching it I was really surprised by how little the crew of the Enterprise was shown. This is a showcase episode for Captain Picard, there is no doubt about that. Of course, having such a tremendous actor like Patrick Stewart, it’s kind of a no-brainer that The Next Generation would focus entire episodes around their captain.
I love the ideas presented in this episode and how really there isn’t a villain in the episode. The alien entity that the Enterprise runs into, even though the crew doesn’t know it, poses no real threat and instead the people who left it there just want to share their history with someone, anyone really. Lucky for them though that the person they get to share their history with is Captain Picard.
We only spent small moments with the crew and yet I find myself really admiring these characters the more I watch them. I am by no means a Next Generation expert, in fact I’d probably rank below an ensign when it comes to TNG experience. Still, it’s hard not to be intrigued by Data, impressed by Riker and Worf and so on. I realized that I’m becoming more and more impressed with Riker. I find him such a natural leader and perhaps even the best first officer in all of Star Trek, this coming from a huge fan of the Vulcan duo of Spock and T’Pol. I love the way he just seems like he’s in charge, even at times when Captain Picard is present. Whether Picard is in or out of the picture, Riker seems ready for command of his own ship, I just love the way everybody knows it.
Now the most intriguing part of the episode was the fact that Picard was only out for about 25 minutes, and yet he spent close to 40 years living the experience and being shown the final days of the planet. Snapping out of it at the end of the episode, it must have been really tough separating what was real and what was not. After all, Picard did spent years, even if it was just in the mind, on that planet with a wife, children and grandchildren. It’s such an interesting premise and was such a treat watching Picard throughout the years. It’s funny how it usually works while watching a Star Trek episode, usually within minutes, you just know you are about to watch something special.

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