Episode Reviews (28)
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Why, oh why?....
Why the Star Trek: The Next Generation producers and writers could not have tried to separate the new Star Trek show from the original is beyond confusing. Instead of allowing The Next Generation crew to embark on their own unique journeys for their first few episodes, the producers/writers decided to remake the original Star Trek series episode "The Naked Time" by Next Generation episode number two. Of all the original episodes to remake too! "The Naked Time" is not even a great original Star Trek series episode to begin with!
So the basic premise is that many members of The Next Generation Enterprise crew contract a mutated form of the disease that the original Enterprise crew encountered. Depending on the individual, the disease makes a person angry, overly silly, or extremely horny.
This episode is remembered only because Data and Tasha Yar have a roll in the hay together. "The Naked Now" is not a great or even particularly good episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. For one thing, the acting is all over the place. It is not surprising that the cast would need time to really polish their performances but the drop in quality between this and the first episode "Encounter At Farpoint" is ridiculous. Also, there are just too many scenes that are impossible to take seriously - or funny. This is either because of the poor writing or the poor acting - probably both.
As bad as the episode is overall, it manages to hold onto some dignity: LaVar Burton makes a very good showing as Geordi (one of the few worthwhile performances of the episode) and the audience is treated to a nice tense ending. Still, "The Naked Now" is not a great piece of The Next Generation series and does not begin to hold a candle to the original Star Trek episode "The Naked Time."moreless
The Naked Now
It's funny, I used to think "The Naked Time," an early episode in the first season of TOS, had a dumb title, but "Naked Now" wins out. You can give the writers credit for immediately reinforcing the new series' connections with the old, creating a stronger sense of continuity between the two and, in theory, letting some of the excellence of "Time" rub off, but in practice, the characters are still too rough, and the plotting far, far too loose for the comparison to do TNG any favors. This is a mess, and what's almost fascinating enough to be entertaining is how thorough a mess it is. We're not just talking about bad jokes, or weak plotting, or clumsy performances, or misjudged tone. We're talk about all of those problems, combining to create an ungainly, clunking forty-five minutes of television. After watching this, I'm amazed the show lasted seven seasons. Hell, I'm amazed it lasted a month.
The Enterprise is investigating problems on a research vessel near a collapsing star--and it's funny how we're already resorting to the same tropes of the original. The "troubled science team" is such a Trek standard at this point that you wonder if script-writers aren't handed out a series of Mad-Libs at the start of the planning process: here's "TST," here's "God-like being," here's "planet which has evolved into an exact duplicate of some location and time in Earth's But familiarity isn't the issue here. Riker and an away team beam over to the science vessel to find the crew dead, and the whole ship in chaos and disrepair. Dr. Crusher insists on full quarantine procedure when the teams back, including a transporter scrub, but while her precaution is well-advised, it doesn't do any good. Soon Geordi is babbling about how much he wants to see beyond the limits of his visor, and it's not long before he manages to spread his sickness, a sickness that the Sick Bay computers don't recognize at all, to the rest of the crew.
The progression here is roughly equivalent to the TOS episode, and that's an issue, not so much for going over the same ground as for how much illogic and laziness is required to make retracing the steps possible. Crusher pays lip service to procedure, but security in Sick Bay is hilariously lax; despite Geordi's clearly disturbed mind, and despite the fact that the science expedition team died because their minds were disturbed, Geordi is able to wander out of the Bay as soon as the doctor's back is turned. Then there's the fact that the original Enterprise recorded their encounter with this particular "disease," but it's Riker who ends up making the connection between the two and not the computer system, despite the clear and obvious relationship. I don't expect the computers to do all the thinking, but surely a search for "rapidly spreading lowered inhibitions, dead crew" would've yielded some results. And then, even once the connection is made and Beverly prepares McCoy's cure, it's another twenty minutes episode-time before she tries it out on anyone, allowing the sickness to take over most of the ship. Once she does test the cure it doesn't work, so she has to prepare a new iteration, which is a valid, if uninspired, way to drag out the threat. But why did it take so long to make that first test? Maybe she was hoping Wesley would get sick and beam himself into the star.
Oh no, wait, that was me. I want to stress, my complaints about the Crusher brat are not directed at Wil Wheaton; true, he doesn't give the best performance, but he was young, and as written, the role is already indefensible. So, so indefensible. I was lucky enough to start watching TNG regularly only in the third season, so I think I missed most of his worst moments. But he's terrifying to me now, with his needy, grinning desperation to be noticed. In "Now," he builds a magical levitating device that he uses to lift chairs, then take over engineering, then save the ship, and even though the results are positive, I still don't trust him. I mean, sweet Jeebus, he has a machine that he uses to simulate Picard giving him orders. I can only imagine what those orders turn into, late at night, after Mom goes to bed.
Sorry! Twisted state of mind, but that's what this episode did to me. Even overlooking Wesley's twerpitude, there's still a whole cast of actors willing and able to embarrass themselves for Tasha Yar's assault on my senses continues, as first she gets sick, then she gets horny, and then she has sex with Data, a colossally misjudged scene that threatens to derail the android's presence on the show before he can really establish himself. Even on his own, Data isn't much fun. Whenever Spiner shows emotion "in character," it comes off as oddly smug, and unlike Spock, Data needs to be humble to be likable. Smarmy Data just makes you yearn for an off switch.
Not everybody does poorly. While Picard and Beverly's flirtation is pretty damn ridiculous, both actors are strong enough that it isn't that horrible to watch. Picard hasn't come entirely into focus yet, but Stewart is so good that this haziness seems intentional and intriguing, and McFadden proves herself again to be thoroughly reliable. And you know who surprised the hell out of me? Riker. I'm understanding his "Kirkness" more and more, as he's the only person on the Enterprise who manages to resist the disease out his sense of duty. In an episode as misbegotten as "Now" is, you have to cling to whatever sanity presents itself.moreless
While investigating the death of the crew of the Starship Tsiolkovsky, the Enterprise crew becomes infected with an illness that causes erratic behavior.
It has been mentioned countless times since this particular episode first aired that it is a ripoff of the original "Star Trek" episode "The Naked Time". I might as well say that I do agree with that opinion. With that out of the way, I will say that despite the fact that I was turned off by the copycat plotline to a certain degree, I did find this episode very entertaining. The cast does very well in their parts both before and after they are infected. I like that fact that it did not get too over the top as it did in parts of "The Naked Time". I also liked the side of the crew the illness brought out. Wesley wishing he were in command of the ship, Troi revealing she still has feelings for Riker. How can I forget Denise Crosby who in this episode gave the best performance of her short time on the show. I gave "The Naked Now" an average rating because of the copycat aspect of this episode. However if you could get past that you will see that it's actually quite good.moreless
"The Naked Time" it is not. Trash from the back of some drunk, horny guy's fantasy, it is...
This story is a remake of the original Trek series' episode "The Naked Time". This original episode, from 1966, used the situation to build up and flesh out characters' inner feelings. "The Naked Now" is a bit more primeval. Instead of character building, which is what TNG needed so early in its run, everyone acts drunk, stoned, or horny. Even Data nabs Yar in bed. I will give future seasons' episodes that look back on this unfortunate aspect of Data's anatomy credit for trying to play it straight, with some success. A feat in of itself remarkable, but was it wise to do in the first place? Just one of many eye rolling moments in an episode that was a truly wasted opportunity. It's "The Man Show", 20 years earlier.moreless
Examining the mysterious deaths of the crew of another USS Starship, members of the Enterprise crew are infected by a touch-transmitted virus that causes them to lose inhibitions and display manic behaviour. A horrible remake of 'The Naked Time'...
I plan on going through the entire run of 'The Next Generation' on DVD to review. Though it had its flaws, I quite enjoyed "Encounter at Farpoint". But when I remembered that "The Naked Now" was next in line to view, I instantly thought to myself "oh no, I have to sit thought *that episode*"!!
I find the very concept behind this episode being made very strange. At the start of 'The Next Generation', Gene Roddenberry was very much set against too many direct ties to the original series, feeling that this new incarnation should stand on its own merit (heck, even Klingon Worf was only added to the cast at the eleventh hour before filming of "Encounter at Farpoint", after much debating). So it seems as bizarre that, with this, the first regular episode after EAF, they decided to directly remake one of the Original Series episodes.
Although some might hail it as such, in my opinion, in my opinion "The Naked Time" wasn't even one of the best episodes of the classic first two seasons of the Original Series anyway, but at least it had a couple of iconic moments, such as Mr. Sulu swashbuckling his way along the corridors. It seemed to have much more scope; "The Naked Now", on the other hand, mostly just feels like an excuse for the cast to "do funny", and it's hard to buy into this 'outlandish behaviour' from characters we've literally just met the previous week. And although the first episode after the Pilot is always a tough one to execute, I agree with a fellow reviewer that the sharp drop in quality from EAF is very noticeable.
This episode also does nothing to help the many who didn't like Wesley. Admittedly, his actions are affected by the virus, but even so, his brattish behaviour here won't win him any new fans, not to mention his first infamous example of "saving the ship". And then there's the convenient writing – at the start of the story, Wes shows off to Geordi his new voice replicator - ohh, I wonder how that will fit into the plot(!)
Although I didn't take a shine to Tasha until a few years later after first being subjected to- ...sorry, I mean, watching this episode, I suppose at the time I liked the sequence of Tasha sauntering along the corridors, making passes at crewmen; and then a bit later, there's that costume she's just about wearing (though I don't like the hairstyle). With that and Doctor Crusher getting all hot and bothered, at least there was something at least from this weak episode to interest me as a 12-year-old boy! (Sorry, just that just sound really sordid?!)
While I'm on the subject of female crew, I hate Troi's "severe" first season look, first seen here; they shoulda stuck with her appearance from EAF.
Handled the worst in this episode is Data. It feels totally wrong for him, an android, to be affected so severely by the virus, and while everyone has their own take on the famous scene between Tasha and himself, it really doesn't fit with the character that he's smiling. Come to think of it, if he's an android, just how does he-... what does-... actually, we probably don't need to go there!
To heavily paraphrase, the writer / producers original intent for this episode was "for the cast / crew to let their hair down after EAF, and to show a different, lighter side of themselves to the viewer". But it backfires.
If they did feel such strong need to re-work "The Naked Time" for TNG, they should have done it later in the series, where we were much more familiar with the characters, and tackled it as a direct spoof. As a first regular episode after the Pilot, it is badly misjudged; in my opinion, this first regular hour-long episode should have been planet-based. As much as I feel it was an over-used concept in TNG and spin-offs, they don't even feature the Holodeck in this one to break things up a little.
On first ever viewing, "The Naked Now" might at least hold some initial mystery before realisation that it is a direct remake of "The Naked Time" fully sets in. But for re-viewing, there is very little that is fun to go back and visit with this one. Although I haven't seen some of the episodes for a few years, I think I probably rank this as one of the weakest, most misjudged episodes of TNG. To any new viewers who were still trying to make up their minds about the new show and the new crew, this one did TNG no favours.moreless
The Enterprise crew is infected with a disease that has an effect like alcohol.
It's easy to question the decision of remaking an original Star Trek episode ("The Naked Time")… especially when it's done right at the beginning of the spinoff series! But this one isn't a bad little first season offering. Wheaton (Wesley) and Spiner (Data) are fantastic, and you can tell they're already getting a handle on their alter egos. The script is tight and gives all the characters a chance to let us learn a little more about them. It also has a sense of humor that "The Naked Time" lacks. That said, I'm not quite sure why Roddenberry didn't try for a similar episode with a different catalyst – to separate it from the original series.moreless
This is one hilarious episode guaranteed to have you laughing you head off. The “Enterprise” is sent to confirm strange occurrences on the “U.S.S. Tsiolkovsky”. When the “Enterprise” arrives there is no sign of life on the “Tsiolkovsky".
This is one hilarious episode guaranteed to have you laughing you head off. The "Enterprise" is sent to confirm strange occurrences on the "U.S.S. Tsiolkovsky". When the "Enterprise" arrives there is no sign of life on the "Tsiolkovsky". An away team investigates the problem on the "Tsiolkovsky" They find nothing and beam back aboard the "Enterprise". Geordi starts showing signs of some intoxicating effect. He unknowingly spreads it to Lt. Yar. Lt Yar become seductive to Data. Data then is intoxicated. Will the crew be able to leave the star that is on verge of collapsing?moreless
everyone on the starship Enterprise gets a virus that makes them seem Drunk including Data.
this was great i thought it was funny just seeing Data drunk especially after he was talking to the captain then the captain left and Data stands there for a second or two then fall flat on the ground that was so funny i couldn't help but laugh! ha ha
The good, the bad, the goofy!
This episode is a lot more fun to watch years later after you have seen the characters develop. When it first aired we only had two other episodes to contrast the outrages behavior of the crew with.
It starts off quite intriguing but its almost a carbon copy of the original Star Trek episode its based on after that. To this day I find myself wondering how Data was affected emotionally. He is virtually immune to all of such effects after this episode. But it was extremely funny to see him refer to this episode in the First Contact movie as the last time he had made love.
4-Word Highlight of the episode: Acting Captain Wesley Crusher