So, in these last few weeks, my wife and I have been re-watching Star Trek TNG. We aren’t watching episodes in any particular order, just kind of bouncing around watching stuff we don’t really remember. Tonight we watched the episode titled, “The Defector”. Apparently, I have quite the knack for choosing depressing TNG episodes. While it isn’t nearly as depressing as the episode “The Survivors”, it is still quite sad.
The basic premise of the episode is that a Romulan has defected and brought news of an impending war between the Romulan Empire and the Federation. Most of the episode is spent with the crew of the Enterprise trying to determine if the defector (who later turns out to be Admiral Jarok) is legit or using wily Romulan tactics to deceive the crew. Turns out that the defector himself (unknown to him) was part of a Romulan ploy to not only test loyalty, but to lure the Enterprise into the Neutral Zone so that the Romulans might destroy it. Jarok realizes that his own people have betrayed him and used him to lure Picard and friends to their doom. However, thanks to Worf and some off-screen tactics by the Enterprise folks, the Klingons come to save the day. But, in the end, it’s too late for Jarok who commits suicide as a result of being duped by the crafty Romulans, abandoning his family, and betraying his people. And that’s why the episode is so damn depressing.
Riker is only thinking about his failed bluff in last night's poker game.
Admiral Jarok was acting out a true desire to prevent his people from being destroyed in a war with the Federation. Although he acted in vain, his actions were still with the interest of his people in mind. The depressing part of the episode is when Jarok talks about never getting to see his daughter grow up and how she will always see him as a traitor (keep in mind that everything he did was for nothing). The last scene of the episode is the cool kids of the Enterprise (Picard, Riker, Data, and Dr. Crusher) standing around the Romulan corpse lamenting the fact that he wrote a letter to his family that will most likely never be delivered. Way to twist the knife, TNG.
I need to watch The Inner Light and forget this shit.
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