The Great Star Trek TNG Rewatch: Transfigurations

When an away team rescues a injured alien from a crash landing, Dr Crusher revives him – only to discover that he has no memory of who he is or where he came from. Whilst the crew try to figure out something about his origin, Crusher oversees the healing process of this “John Doe”, only to be amazed by his rapid progress.

Ah, the old “Enterprise rescues someone who turns out to be an escaped prisoner” plot. When even my viewing companion can guess the plot, you know you’ve overused it – given that he hasn’t memorised the entirety of Star Trek the way I have. Arguably, this is an episode that gives Crusher something to do other than be ship’s doctor or Wesley’s mum, but since that thing is “budding romance with a random alien”, it doesn’t really stretch her character beyond the “caring female” limits.

Life in space

  • Like the psychotricorder of Wolf in the Fold, here we see a piece of technology that has never been used before and never will again – the neural link between Geordi and John Doe, used to let Geordi’s brain regulate John’s unstable nervous system. Why would this even work on an alien with a different nervous system to a human? If this thing works so well, why isn’t used all the time?
  • The aftereffects of the neural link make Geordi feel more confident, and able to pursue a relationship with Christy Henshaw. That’s the same Christy Henshaw who already friendzoned Geordi in Booby Trap, but they’re both back for more.
  • The Enterprise is the flagship of The Federation, a major galactic power, and yet the Zalkonians, a minor random power, have a starship that is equally as powerful and maneuverable.

Worf’s dating advice

  • Show a woman the fire in your eyes.
  • Apparently, “it is the scent that first speaks of love”.

Summary – Transfigurations: “Sorry, I was bored. How did he turn into an energy being?”

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