Episode

250

Parallels

What is weirder than a lauging Vulcan and his dog? How about Lieutenant Wesley Crusher? Or a blue eyed Data? Or Worf’s wife, Deanna Troi? Everything is as it should be, except that none of it is right. Find out why when we put Parallels in the Mission Log.

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Discussion

  • Dave Steph Taylor

    An actually great episode. The long build up to the explanation is done pretty well.

    • Matthew Burns

      And, it is ‘The Pegasus’ this week. I rate that one as the best overall episode of Season 7, and among the best of TNG. Also not forgetting, Terry O’Quinn guest stars, a superb actor.

      • Just watched as part of my prep routine…God Bless Netflix! lol- yes we are in for a good one….but weI shouldn’t type/speak of it here…sssshhhhh

  • CmdrR

    Wouldn’t the ‘trophy’ in a bat’leth tournament be… your opponent’s head??

    • I agree with the whole “ninth place”…you know, of all the Star Trek species to have “participation trophy”, just about the last ones you’d expect would be the Klingons.

      • MT

        Yeah. 9th place? Was there a ceremony? I feel like in Klingon world it is first place or nothing. Then again, there could have been hundreds of competitors for all we know.

    • Derwood

      Universe #127:
      Data: “There is no record of you winning Champion Standing in the Bat’leth tournament. It says here only that you beat a chicken at tic-tac-toe… after four tries.”

  • Matthew Burns

    This could be Brannon Braga’s finest work on Star Trek?

    Very exciting concept. Could have easily been made as a Movie for TNG, or maybe a big two part episode. But as is, it is a great Worf episode.

  • I think you guys are overlooking the possibility that multiple copies of Worf, instead of Worves, could be “Worfen”.

    This was an exceptionally fun episode because, for every different timeline Worf slips through, there’s a whole universe of stories that played out differently – maybe subtly different, maybe wildly different. Who among us doesn’t want some sort of comic book series about ZZ Top Riker commanding his ragtag skeleton crew through a universe overrun by the Borg? The episode is clever enough to slip you just enough morsels of information about what’s different to spark your imagination…and then it moves on to a different one. Then those timelines get extrapolated in your head and you get to have fun with them.

    Good thing Worf didn’t lazily set the spiky ball trophy down on his ball chair, because it’d kinda blend in and then the next time he sat down…yeeeeowwch! That’ll leave a mark. (The mark of a true warrior?)

    There’s only one reason for there to be a Giant Lighted Lucite Tactical Display of Gotham City right behind Tactical Wesley, and that’s so stuntpeople can fall through it and break it during action scenes. That’s how you know things are *really* getting bad.

    Three or four more universes, and Worf would’ve wound up in the timeline where he married Pulaski instead of Troi. This is another of those cases where, in an ideal world where no one was against the idea, we could’ve simply had a universe where Pulaski was the doctor instead of Crusher, and again, no one makes a big stink about it because in that reality, Pulaski stayed after season 2.

    So it’s a big deal when chocolate cake turns into white cake, but it never turns into a cellular peptide cake…

    • Ugh…cellular peptide cake..hate that stuff! Great point about Lucite display!..hahahaha, I can see the shards smashing and scattering now….I recall a DC comics TNG issue, “The Worst of Both Worlds” that gave us a glimpse into that Borg universe…yup…really wish TNG had done the Dark Mirror universe from TOS and then DS9 and VOY. Big missed opportunity…

      • Eh…really, I don’t wish that. DS9 flew the Mirror Universe into the ground as far as I was concerned. I was pleased that TNG never went to that universe (except in print, which I’m comfortable skipping).

        • Agreed that DS9 visited the well a bit more than I expected…maybe just 2 episodes would have been good. For TNG, I think one at least….

    • wchmara

      I’m reminded of the Disney movie “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (sic).”

  • gizmochimp

    One of my favorite episodes, and definitely the best of Season 7. As a kid with no concept of parallel universes, let alone traveling between them, this blew my mind when I saw it the first time. Solid ep from beginning to end and that finale with all of the alternate Enterprises popping into existence!

    • Yup…really a great concept…the Multi-Verse in a nutshell. TOS had their Dark Mirror universe, wish TNG had at least one. “Yesterday’s Enterprise” was the closest they came to something like this concept…

    • Matthew Burns

      The thing is that, is the universe is never ending and infinate, then logically there could be many planets exactly like our Earth, with very similar histories and species…

  • Konservenknilch

    Once again I’m amazed at what the chief of security on the flagship can get away with.

    Worf: Captain, I’m taking the week off for a tournament which might get me maimed, possibly killed.

    Picard: Have fun, and don’t forget to bring us some klingon chocolates.

    Oh, and I totally buy that Klingons have trophies for losers. Shamed for life.

  • Robert Hackett

    I am glad one of the first things discussed was the 9th place trophy idea. Even when I watched this over 20 years ago, I immediately realized how absurd this was. Just plain dumb. I also like how it shows a reality where the Borg win. One thing that bothered me with STTNG portrayal of the Borg was all the Deus Ex Machina endings that save the Enterprise. I always found it curious why the Borg rarely assimilated anything except when the plot called for it. If they really existed, they would annihilate everything non stop. They would not just sit there because “They do not feel we are a threat”. Not buying it. The worst thing is we are getting closer to Sub Rosa. I think I would rather be assimilated than watch that again.

    • This is a nice pause in the “Descent”- lol, “Pegasus” is decent..but yeah…I had named the crappy ones, “Geordi gets a Drone & a Family” “Data’s Weird Dreams” “Environmental episode” and “Crusher’s Horny Ghost”….sigh sadly quite a few more steaming turds heading our way…”Stupid Holodeck Train” steaming at us soon…arrrgh….
      Yes, the Borg really got dumbed down a bit…although the Locutus bit was cool for the episode, in “reality” the Borg would have just mowed them down, like all the other races…nothing distinctive about humanity/Earth…a great enemy albeit a bit OverPowered…still loved them but sad for the missed potential…

    • Konservenknilch

      The Borg don’t seem to be master strategists. Just take First Contact: if they had bothered to send two cubes, earth would have been toast. Or Voyager, when they still ignore humans on their ships for a couple of minutes despite being regularly defeated by them.

      • I actually thought about this a couple years back and realized that the Borg may be more relevant now than they were in 1989 or 1999. They’re the epitome of Too Big To Fail.

        • Konservenknilch

          Now I have to imagine that the federation is propping up the Borg economy to keep an outside threat alive.

      • Yup…sigh…just a bit plot-holey….

    • Even Klingons give participation trophies, that is why their self esteem is so high.

    • Matthew Burns

      Sub Rosa is no worse than Up the Long Ladder, Man of the People, Cost of Living…. quite a few others… its not that bad!

  • MT

    Worf had one helluva day! It started off so subtle….the cake, the painting, a uniform…then quickly escalated: the trophy, missing the captain’s orders…next thing you know he’s getting shoulder rubs.

    • I just like that the Ice Man himself, the unflappable warrior, leaps across the room like a scared cat from a peck on the cheek. The way Dorn plays that cracks me up every time.

      • MT

        Agreed! Love that scene.

      • Am I the only one that thought Worf shoulda jumped on that, literally and not be so shy?!?! oyyyyyy

    • I like how the if you re-watch…his suspicions in the beginning about a surprise party could be interpreted as noticing a reality shift…. also, Worf could not smell the guests hiding in his room?!?!!

  • I wish that one of the versions had a human Data. A version where Soong had sons (that resemble him) that were cybernetically enhanced. A day where Spiner doesn’t have to get full make-up.

    Or a version where Lore never turned evil and Data was never built. A version where Lore (pretty much Data with emotions) is 2nd officer.

    Or a version where everyone has beards (including the women) and only Riker & Worf are clean shaven.

    Or a gender-swapped version where they’re immediately aware something’s amiss (somehow).

    • Somewhere in there…is the one Captain Picard who didn’t go “AAAAAHHHH!” immediately upon arrival.

  • John Anderton

    A multi-verse is formed when a particle is detected by another particle. It has nothing to do with the mind:

    “There has been a tendency to give an extreme subjectivist interpretation to this new doctrine. I mean that relativity of space and time has been construed as through it were dependent on the choice of the observer. It is perfectly legitimate to bring in the observer, if he facilitates explanations. But is is the observer’s body that we want, and not his mind”

    Alfred North Whitehead, Science and the Modern World, 1924

  • Dave Steph Taylor

    A few last thoughts:

    1- They really missed the opportunity to reintroduce the mirror universe from back in TOS. Would have been great to check in again. And Spock is still kicking in the Next Gen timeline, he could have made an appearance from the mirror universe timeline.

    2- Somewhere in all that mess is the J.J. Abrams Universe and a universe where Mission Log was never made.

  • One additional thought: I think there’s a piece of electronic dance music just waiting to be built around Ken saying: “Sub. space. field. pulse.” with such precision.

    I’ll get right on that.

  • Weirdest Trek moment ever ? Witnessed that on Facebook –
    ML Listener Ryan Roach is pretty certain Levar Burton lost a bet.
    However- Worf doesn’t say one damn word about how
    the that already small space towel ( that was just barely covering the goods ) on The Naked Dead became even smaller
    when old Yellow Eyes asked him:
    “Have you noticed another discontinuity?” https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/281a5ab5e8135cfb7de0f8833463a1c1ef600d0ff899df90915f5fed0ea68eed.jpg

    • Birthday Party: Yes! – Funeral for a friend? NO!

  • Was really hoping to hear one more “Shut up, Wesley!”

  • wchmara

    It’s always been a pet peeve of mine that there was this long-standing rule when it came to submissions to the Star Trek line of novels that authors had to adhere to the same standards as if they were writing for the TV series. Basically, you couldn’t write about anything that would permanently alter the status quo of the show (unless you pushed a reset button by the end).
    It is commonly accepted that the books aren’t canon anyway, so why not allow your writers to go wild with all sorts of what-ifs that you would never see in an episode or movie? It would give readers incentive to buy them. Instead, you can expect the book line to be full of overpriced and ultimately inconsequential waste-of-paper nonsense.

  • Spike1138

    I walked worlds of smoke and half-truths, intangible.

    Worlds of torment and of unnamable beauty. Opaline towers as high as small moons. Glaciers that rippled with insensate lust.

    And one world with nothing but shrimp.

    I tired of that one quickly.