The Rewatch 184: New Ground

Series: Star Trek: TNG
Episode: 5.10 New Ground (12/30/1991)
Rating: 3/5
Redshirt Status: 0/1/35

Notable Guest Stars:
Brian Bonsall (Alexander) –Bonsall will play Alexander over the course of 6 episodes.  He has since quit acting and focused on his music career.
Georgia Brown (Helena)
Georgia Brown was quite popular on stage and appeared on ST once before in the role of Helena.  This episode would be her last performance, as she died on July 5, 1992.
Jennifer Edwards (Kyle)- 
She is most known for playing the part of Heidi in 1968 during an TV presentation that interrupted coverage of a football game.  She is also the daughter of Blake Edwards and stepdaughter of Julie Andrews.  She continues to act and write
Richard McGonagle (Ja’Dar)-
McGonagle is mostly known for his voice work, appearing in many animated shows and games. As an example, he played the voice of Bato on Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Review:

I normally love Worf, but this episode and those prior to it do not show him in a favorable light in regard to his ability to be a father.  He sent his son, whom he had only spent a few days with, to live with his parents, and apparently vary rarely visited (and I’m not sure how often they spoke.  Alexander was kind of forgotten about for a season and a half.). Now his mother had decided to tell him that his parents are just a bit too old to take care of such a rambunctious and traumatized boy.

Worf’s phrase of the episode is to remind him that Klingon children are harder to care for, and everyone must be unprepared for that.  He says this to his own mother who raised him. He also says this to a teacher who no doubt has taught children from various species with different learning needs.

There is a lot of assumptions going on regarding the social needs staff.  I am assuming that Kyle (they don’t give her a rank or a first name) has a staff to teach the children.  Given the 1000+ crew, I’m assuming there is more then 25 children.  Also, I am assuming that Deanna is not the only therapist on board because she spends a hell of a lot of time on the Bridge if she is the only mental health professional on board the ship.

Deanna must sit Worf down and remind him that his son is traumatized.  He witnessed his mother’s death, and only days later got sent away from his father. He’s a three-year-old boy, a bit older in looks and mind due to being part Klingon.  Worf seems to forget that sometimes that his son still is a quarter human.  Alexander might never really be a full Klingon in that respect.  He might have different needs.

And he tries to send his son away to Klingon School, which I’m guessing is like threating to send your child to military school for humans.  Because he assumes no one can handle Alexander and his issues with lying and stealing.  However, He is forced to remember he loves his son and needs him close by when Alexander nearly dies in a fire caused by the ship being hit with a sonic wave.

The secondary plot for this episode is the development of an alternative transportation wave which could replace Warp and be much less damaging to space.  Which is interesting but it is mostly drowned out by the Worf/Alexander plot.

Interesting Notes:

  • Written by Rick Berman
  • Directed by Paul Lynch
  • This was the last performance of Georgia Brown (Helena Rozhenko) as the actress would pass away in 1992.
  • This is the second casting of Alexander.  In Reunion he was played by Jon Steuer.  Bonsall would continue to be Alexander for TNG.  The part would be recast to show an older Alexander for DS9
  •  

Pros

  •  Development of traveling systems.  Warp seems to be the default way of travel for at least 300 years.  I’m assuming that over the years they have developed technology to smooth out the ride and the warp levels have changed.
  • Getting to see life on the ship outside the bridge.

Cons:

  • Worf needs up his fathering game.
  • K’Ehleyr should have been brought up a bit more.  They don’t seem to talk much about the Rozhenkos either.

Screencap via CygnusX1.net

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