The Great Star Trek Rewatch: The Next Phase

Whilst beaming back from an away mission to help a damaged Romulan ship, Geordi and Ro find themselves unable to properly interact with the Enterprise and its crew. Ro is convinced that they must be dead, but Geordi isn’t so willing to give up, and sets about finding a way to reverse their predicament.

The “no one else can see us” story is a typical sci-fi plot, and it remains largely unremarkable here. There’s some standard Romulan intrigue, a good measure of technobabble and “La Forge’s wager” – if they aren’t dead, they should try to fix their situation, and if they are, well they haven’t lost anything by trying.

All the things we have to ignore for this episode to work

  • Why don’t Geordi and Ro just fall through the floor straight to their deaths – why are they only able to pass through walls and consoles?
  • Since Geordi and Ro are out of phase with the atmosphere of the Enterprise, they should just suffocate immediately.
  • Geordi and Ro don’t have anything to eat (or presumably drink) for over two days, but seem none the worse the wear for it. Perhaps they were drinking each other’s pee to stay alive.

Other points

  • For once, Riker listens to Worf when he suggests security precautions to stop the Romulans from stealing their technology.
  • Data seems unfamiliar with human death rituals despite having attended Tasha’s wake.

Summary – The Next Phase: This is what happens when Chief O’Brien isn’t operating the transporter.

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