Series: Star Trek: TNG
Episode: 4.20 Qpid (04/22/1991)
Redshirt Status: 0/1/34
Notable Guest Stars:
John De Lancie(Q) – Once again appearing as Star Trek’s second favorite guest character (er, maybe the first, but Lwaxana won’t take second place).
Jennifer Hetrick (Vash) – Hetrick returns as Vash, Picard’s archelogy invested love interest. She will return for an episode in DS9
Clive Revill (Sir Guy of Gisbourne) – a noted stage actor, and the original voice of the Emperor in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back.
I have a like/hate relationship with this episode. It is definitely one of the more quotable episodes of TNG, but I’m not a huge fan of Q in this series (although to be fair this is one of his less annoying episodes).
The premise of the episode is that Jean-Luc is hosting a archaeology convention onboard the Enterprise. Not only is he a enthusiast, but he has his own paper to present to the council of Archaeologists. However, Q happens, and when Q happens nothing goes as planned.
Also adding to the problems Picard is having, his old flame Vash has reappeared, attending the conference to try and pawn off some antiquities she had “acquired.” Vash as an individual character is interesting, but I find her annoying in this episode, and frankly a horrible fit for Picard.
Q, sensing that there are troubles with the couple (Vash is not happy that no one knows of her) decides he will teach Picard that love is weakness as a repayment for his help when he was thrown out of the continuum. So, he throws Picard (in the middle of his speech, mind you) into Sherwood forest and the story of Robin Hood. He even lets it continue without his control of the situation.
This part of the episode is immensely quotable. When I was watching it I kept texting some of the lines to my friends.
“I protest! I am not a Merry Man!” I think that may be one of my favorite Worf lines. And he has a point. Worf is not shown often as being overly joyful. The scene where Data cheers on Deanna learning her archery even though he ends up getting shot a lot is hilarious too. Honestly I could care less about the Vash/Picard subplot but the interactions of the crew and Picard, and the situation at hand are funny and more interesting.
I do feel bad for Brent spinner and the wig he had to wear.
I bet it was fun to film this episode. Different customs, different skill sets. I do wonder if Deanna started practicing archery after this just to say she could.
Overall, I enjoy this episode – I just don’t consider it one of my “Must Watch” episodes. If it was on TV, I would settle in and watch it, but I won’t be seeking it out purposely.
- Written by Randee Russell, Ira Steven Behr
- Directed by Cliff Bole
- Influenced by Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves which had just been released in theaters.
- Behr was also influenced by Animal House.
- Ironically filmed on Valentine’s day (February 6-15, 1991)
- Frakes was actually injured during the filming when a prop broke, and was taken to the hospital in costume.
- Gates McFadden and Marina Sirtis had sword training but unfortunately were unable to show off.
- Patrick Stewart would play King Richard in Robin Hood: Men in Tights, which was a parody of Prince of Theives which inspired this episode
- Stewart and Hetrick were engaged at the time of filming.
- Highlights off duty interests of Picard
- Picard gets a romance, even if I think she’s not a good fit for him. At least he gets a chance at romance and doesn’t remain constantly pining for Beverly Crusher.
- Its always fun to see the crew getting to be out of uniform.
- Nothing completely stands out.
Screencap via CygnusX1.net