The Great Star Trek TNG Rewatch: Interface

In order to investigate a ship trapped in the atmosphere of a gas giant, Geordi’s VISOR inputs are hooked up to a probe, enabling him to remotely explore. But when his mother’s ship goes missing 300 light-years away, he starts to see visions of her aboard the trapped ship. Is she really there, or is just Geordi just in denial about his mother’s likely death?

Whilst the idea of a remote interface suit is pretty neat – and certainly something that fits well into the Star Trek universe – the rest of this episode is average at best. Not only am I saddened by the abrupt killing off of Geordi’s mother just for the sake of this plot, but the actual explanation behind his visions are a bit of a lame explanation for an otherwise serviceable mystery. The first time I watched it, I could just about believe that Geordi’s mother might really be there and that the crew should believe him, but once you know the truth, it doesn’t really withstand rewatching.

Family tragedies

Bonus section for Enterprise-D crew personal family tragedies!

  • Picard: none yet, but in Generations his brother and nephew will burn to death in a fire.
  • Riker: lost his mother when he was just a baby. In this episode, he admits that when he was very young, he used to pretend she was still alive, and even grew to believe it for a while.
  • Data: had to deactivate and disassemble his own ‘brother’, who had attacked their creator and ‘father’ some years previously.
  • Crusher: lost her husband whilst he was serving under Picard.
  • Geordi: loses his mother in this episode.
  • Troi: her father died when she was young, and she also had an older sister who died.
  • Worf: his parents were killed in a Romulan attack when he was six.

Points of note

  • The Excelsior is mentioned – presumably a namesake and not the one originally commanded by Sulu in Star Trek VI.
  • The Hera’s warp drive included parts which are known to have strange side effects – why would be these used for a starship on active duty? Keep them at the prototype level until it’s been proven that they won’t kill anyone – space is dangerous enough as it is!

Summary – Interface: Farewell, Geordi’s mum, we barely knew you.

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