The Great Star Trek TNG Rewatch: Rascals

On the way back from shore leave, Picard, Guinan, Ro and Keiko get caught in an energy anomaly that reverts their bodies to their twelve-year-old selves. Whilst Dr Crusher tries to search for a way to return them to normal, Picard and the others must learn to deal with their second childhood.

There’s no escaping the fact that this is a silly episode. The child characters are largely annoying, and the Ferengi takeover of the ship is so preposterous that the whole thing feels more like an episode of Scooby Doo than of Star Trek. Aside from a couple of interesting character moments, this episode is something to be endured rather than enjoyed.

Second childhood

  • Picard is the most irritating of the children, with his fake British accent and inability to even pronounce Picard. There is, however, an amusing moment where Riker has to hug 12-year-old Picard whilst pretending that they are father and son.
  • I actually felt a little sorry for Keiko, as she realises that as a 12-year-old, her relationship with her husband and daughter is vastly changed.
  • Ro’s original childhood was spent in Bajoran internment camps, so naturally it’s not a time she wishes to relive. Guinan takes it upon herself to show Ro the joys of a more carefree adolescence.
  • Guinan is typical Guinan, but with 500 centuries under her belt, she’s determined to enjoy a second childhood.

Other points

  • RVN, the supposed DNA sequences that control growing up, do not exist in real life.
  • The Enterprise is the Federation’s flagship. Am I really supposed to be believe that a handful of Ferengi in a couple of second-hand Klingon birds-of-prey are able to take it over? If they can, then I think serious questions need to be asked.
  • When Picard and the others are reverted to children, what happens to the excess mass?It should be conserved.
  • This is the last appearance of the O’Brien family on TNG before they transfer to DS9.

Summary – Rascals: And they would have gotten away with it too, if not for those meddling kids.

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