Saddle up because we’ve got to take back “Starship Mine”!
Writer, editor, and educator Ryan Britt joins the show this week to discuss an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation that blends comedy gold with action thrills! The Enterprise is in drydock for a baryon sweep and the crew is scheduled for a little R&R. But when terrorists take over the defenseless ship, Picard must become a one-man army to keep them from obtaining deadly trilithium!
One of Trek’s greatest strengths is its ability to artfully slide between genres and tones, and this episode is a clinic in the franchise’s flexibility. It contains some of Trek’s best sly comedic moments and in its “Die Hard” sub-plot, it prefigures the action spectacle of the TNG films, the reboot films, and the Trek series of the new millennium. On this episode, we talk about Trek’s facility with pastiche and homage, the brilliance of Trek’s subdued world-building, putting Federation morals to the test, the oft-forgotten violence of early Trek, the disapproval of Michael Piller, the comprehensive talent of Brent Spiner, the and the stalwart Patricia Tallman.
We also discuss “Die Hard on the Enterprise”, virtual horses, Wil Wheaton as the “big get”, why James Bond would be a terrible Trek captain, adding new skills to Picard, loving the Beatles, building a better Moriarty, killing terrorists on your holiday, bald barbers, reading TV Guide episode descriptions, going “into darkness”, exploring “TNG’s Discovery”, and letting Picard kick ass!
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Listen to “Season 5, Episode 12 “Starship Mine” (TNG) with Ryan Britt” on Spreaker.