The Great Star Trek TNG Rewatch: New Ground

Whilst the Enterprise prepares to help with groundbreaking soliton wave experiments that could allow faster-than-light travel without warp drive, Worf is visited by his adoptive mother. The Rozhenkos are finding Worf’s son Alexander a bit too much to handle, and have decided that he is better off living with his father on the Enterprise. Can Worf handle the pressures of parenting a Klingon child?

I was looking forward to this episode for not one, but two reasons. First off, I actually like the science B-story, even if it is just because solitons are a real thing, and secondly, because it’s about time someone told Worf to step up and be a parent to his kid. Even if the Alexander story is pure soap opera, it’s still worth watching. Alexander is clearly in need of some attention and parental stability, whilst Worf is the hopeless parent one might expect, whose only method of motivating his child is to invoke abstract concepts of Klingon honour.

Life on a soliton wave

  • Despite being hailed as an amazing breakthrough in faster-than-light travel, solitons are never mentioned again. Yes, they failed here, but that’s the point of research and prototyping.
  • If there’s nothing at the destination to disperse the soliton wave, how would the ship ‘riding’ it drop out of warp? It feels like at best this can only be used to travel between destinations that have already been visited.
  • The Enterprise cannot go around the wave in time, because it has spread out so much – but from the looks of it, they could easily go under or over it. Why does everyone think so two-dimensionally?
  • One of the Enterprise’s duties is transporting rare and endangered creatures to nature reserves.
  • When Riker rescues the gilvos, he takes them out of the cage and just holds them directly in his arms – this seems perilous at best. What if they escaped into the ship’s corridors? What if he inadvertently squeezed them to death?
  • Worf has a statue of Kahless, the first Klingon Emperor, fighting his brother Morath after Morath dishonoured their family by telling a lie. Kahless was of course seen in TOS in “smooth-headed” form, but will henceforth be depicted in “ridged-head” form.

Summary – New Ground: Is there a condom that can stand up to the pounding of Klingon sex?

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