The Rewatch 89: The Big Goodbye

Series: Star Trek (The Animated Series)
Episode: 1.11 The Big Goodbye (01-11-88)
Rating: 4/5
Redshirt Status: 0/1

Notable Guest Stars:
Lawrence Tierney – Cyrus Redblock. He was known for playing mobsters. He was also featured in Reservoir Dogs (1992). He would return to play a character in DS9
Harvy Jason – Felix Leech. Featured in Jurassic Park 2: Lost World.
William Boyett – Dan Bell. Appeared in the 1960s TV series Adam-12
Dick Miller – Vender. Popular character actor.
Gary Armagnac – Lt McNary . He is more known for his theater work then his television work, but he has won several awards and worked as a Director of Education for a Shakespeare festival in Utah.
Guy Vardaman – He would become a regular background actor, stand-in and body double on the show. In this episode he plays a background citizen of San Francisco.

Review:

TNG has one element to help them tell a multitude of stories, and that is the holodeck. Except it is very much overused. Considering at at least once or twice a season the holodeck malfunctions, I’m surprised they have the technology installed anymore. Or maybe the Enterprise is unique. Voyager too had problems, but half their problems involved aliens taking over the holodeck.

In this episode, the Holodecks are newly updated with new stories and lifelike scenes. Before this it was mostly a training device, occasionally showing simple scenes for recreation. Now it can perform storylines and be more complex.

Troi orders the Captain to take a break on trying to pronounce a greeting for the Jaradans, an insectoid race that takes pronunciation and dictation very seriously. She believes the Captain is over preparing.

He takes her advice and goes to the holodeck and gets stuck there, along with Data (who has of course read every Dixon Hill book out there) and Lt. Whalen, a anthropologist who has background in the time period Dixon Hill took place.

This episode is good on the side that Patrick Stewart gets to play Picard in a different role, and Brent Spiner gets to try out various accents. But the story overall is pretty forgettable. If you ask me at the end of this to mention the episodes I would remember, this would not be it.

As a side note I think it would have been funny seeing Kirk try to replicate the language as Picard does now.

Interesting Notes:

  • Written by Tracy Torme
  • Directed by Joseph L. Scanlan
  • First major use of the Holodeck
  • Introduction of the Dixon Hill novels Picard loves so much. It references The Maltese Falcon.
  • This episode won a Peabody award for 1987
  • William Ware Thesis won an Emmy for his costume designs in this episode.
  • Torme wanted to film the holodeck scenes in black and white.
  • Introduction of insect based race

Pros:

  • Data & Geordi Friendship
  • Picard feature
  • more non-english languages

Cons:

  • Pretty forgettable episode

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