CBS (ended 1994)
It's too hard to only choose five! My top ten, in no particular order:
- The Inner Light
- Yesterday's Enterprise
- Best of Both Worlds
- Cause and Effect
- The First Duty
- The Pegasus
- All Good Things
Of course, there are dozens and dozens of episodes that deserve to also be on this list.
By the way, everyone seems to rave about "Inner Light". That was terrible! One of the slowest episodes in terms of plot in the series. However, in terms of acting, Stewart did a great job of playing the compromishing father/husband, while still emotionally tethered to the enterprise captain role.
Since I like the number 7 here are my seven favorites:
7. The Lore episodes.
6. Don't recall title but the one in which a reptillian alien poses as a different first-officer (in human guise).
5. The Klingon Civil-War episodes.
4. The Romulan episodes.
3. Conspiracy. (Just like Space Seed made an excellent theatrical movie update in The Wrath of Khan, so would this episode for the TNG crew).
2. The Borg episodes. And...
1. The Q episodes.
Alright so only two are individual episodes. Sorry, this is what I came-up with.
OK, I'm not sure if I could put them in order but here goes
Chain of Command - Undoubtedly one of the most powerful episodes I've ever watched in ANY television series. Patrick Stewart's acting as the tortued prisoner was almost disturbingly brilliant.
Best of Both Worlds - Who doesn't love this one? Our first MAJOR encounter with the Borg - not only does it show off Patrick's acting, but has some brilliant moments for both Jonathan Frakes and Brent Spiner. Really cements the Picard-Data relationship.
The Inner Light - Showing Picard what he's missing in life. Stunning performance from Patrick Stewart, and Jay Cattaway outdid himself with this music. I wish the writers hadn't let the story drop so quickly though - I'm thinking being under the perception you had lived an entirely seperate life to wake up and discover it was a dream would leave on a little messed up for a while.
The Measure of a Man - Again, Brent and Patrick's acting skills are really put on display here, with an episode that slaps us in the face with humanity's tendency to be prejudiced towards that which it does not understand. Interestingly, did anyone get the foreshadowing and irony from Encounter at Farpoint - think about Riker and Data's conversation on the holodeck.
Pen Pals - Not one that gets mentioned very often, but a significant one anyway. A lot of good philosophical discussions coming up here. I particularly love the scene in Picard's quarters when he orders Data to cease communications with the little girl, then her voice comes on through the channel, and you can see his whole demeanour change.
The Drumhead - Good episode, though I wasn't thrillled with the way it ended - seemed a little too abrupt. Still, fine performances from Patrick and Jean Simmons (Norah Satie). I especially liked the scene at the end between Picard and Worf.
Tapestry - OK, apart from the delicious possibility of the afterlife being controlled by Q, I think this is one of the best Q episodes of any series. A reminder of up to be careful what we wish for, and that who we are is a compilation of our mistakes and our successes. I always thought the message here was not to have any regrets about your life, so long as you are happy with who you are.
Frame of Mind - Another really intelligent episode, and Jonathan Frakes was absolutely brilliant. I didn't think Riker was used as well as he could have been throughout the series, but this one more than made up for it.
Gambit - A good solid action episode, with solid performances from Patrick and Jonathan. Besides, Picard makes a really sexy desperado.
Pre-Emptive Strike - Good episode for Ro, with a lot of strong character development. I love the way Michelle Forbes played the obvious conflict of loyalties Ro has between the man who gave her a second chance when no one else would, and the people who were trying to stop the race that had spent years attacking her people. Patrick Stewart's acting at the end, when Picard learns of Ro's defection, is wonderful.
Those would be the major ones. I'm a big fan of Patrick Stewart, so I liked anything which featured a lot of him, like Captain's Holiday, QPid, Starship Mine, Lessons, etc.
There are so many good ones, it's hard to pick just five:
All Good Things
Best Of Both Worlds
Cause And Effect
Frame Of Mind
Had to do a Top Ten
1. The Inner Light
2. Sins of the Father
4. The Next Phase
10.The Ensigns of Command
Honorable Mention: All Good Things...I and II
Wow that was hard jsut picking out ten let alone 5. and I had to of course mention the series finale. also sad to not see no JL/B hook-up. wipes tear.
I've seen all the episodes when they were originally ran... but most of them I've forgot... mostly cause TNG was actually the Star Trek that put me off the franchise for quite a while... and every time I try giving it another chance and turn on a re-run... its ALWAYS the episode where everyone devolves due to a weird virus thing... I HATE THAT EPISODE!
So after seeing this thread, I've gone back and started watching the episodes mentioned, as well as the highest rated ones based on scoring... so far I watched "Pegasus","Best of Both Worlds", "Who Watches the Watchmen", and "The Measure of a Man"
but on rewatch, the one I like most so far is "Pegasus"... which I liked because it shows a different, darker side of Star Fleet...
Also, I kinda like "Lower Decks"... once again, I like it because it highlighted the fact that there are other people on the ship then just the regulars...
Of course the Q is awesome tho, and I'll probably start rewatching all his episodes before too long...
2. Cause and Effect
3. The Next Phase
4. Time's Arrow
5. The Quality of Life
6. Second Chances
8. Lower Decks
Sorry I had trouble making it to just five as well. I like the Data episodes most.