‘NIGHT TERRORS’ (TNG)
Please feel free to comment on my review.
This is definitely a strange ‘Star Trek: TNG’ episode to watch through. And yes, I know. There is a ‘Doctor Who’ episode called ‘Night Terrors’. ‘TNG’ did it first as they also did it with ‘Journey’s End’.
This is considered to be one of the five worst episodes ever made in ‘TNG’ by TechRepublic and even Jonathan Frakes considers this to be ‘a yawner’. Whilst I don’t dispute that, I don’t think it’s that bad.
I mean okay, it’s not the greatest ‘Star Trek’ episode I’ve seen in ‘TNG’. There are things about it that are quite scary and eerie to watch. But it’s not one of those ‘TNG’ stories to get over-excited about.
The episode has the Enterprise searching a binary star system to look for a Federation science vessel called the Brattain. This ship was missing a month ago. The Enterprise find the Brattain ship derelict.
Riker leads an away team including Worf, Data, Dr. Crusher and Troi to find out what happened aboard the ship. They find the crew are mostly dead, save one who happens to be a Betazoid officer.
This is John Vickery as Andrus Hagan, who is the Brittain’s science officer. Hagan is discovered hiding a room just off the bridge. Although he’s still alive, he seems to be a catatonic state and is shaken up.
Deanna Troi is able to contact Hagan via telepathy when they bring him back to the Enterprise and place him in sick bay. The contact Deanna has with Hagan is limited, as he seems incomprehensible.
Hagan says words via telepathy with Deanna Troi that doesn’t seem to make any sense. Gradually during the episode, Troi works it out what these words means, especially when she has nightmares.
Yeah, this episode is notable for the nightmarish dream sequences Deanna Troi has. Apparently this episode was meant to be a vehicle for Marina Sirtis’ Deanna Troi and this does seem to be the case.
However, Marina Sirtis disliked this episode when she made it due to her fear of heights and that she had to be strapped in a flying harness. She also criticised her own bum getting shown in the story. 😀
The nightmares that Deanna has involve her flying through space and following a mysterious voice saying “Eyes in the dark, one moon circles.” Deanna keeps having the same nightmare over and over.
Whilst that’s going on, Geordi and Data repair the Brattain but the ship continues to not move. Beverly also discovers that the Brattain crew killed each other as their own hands without a reason.
Four days later, as the Enterprise thinks of towing the Brattain to a nearby starbase, the crew start to exhibit strange behaviour and experience hallucinations. This also happened for the Brattain’s crew.
Also the Enterprise seems to be stalled in space which also happened to the Brattain ship. It seems that the Enterprise is stuck in something called a Tyken’s Rift, where strange aliens beings reside in.
The episode features Colm Meaney as Chief O’Brien and Rosalind Chao as his wife, Keiko. There’s a peculiar scene where O’Brien seems jealous and irritated when Keiko returns back to their quarters.
Whoopi Goldberg guest stars as Guinan in the episode. She tries to keep the tension levels down when crewmembers get agitated in Ten Forward. She even uses a special alien gun to keep it down.
There are moments in the story where the regular characters behave oddly or experience hallucinations. This includes Picard screaming out inside the turbo-lift when on his way to the bridge.
Riker also experiences a hallucination when he’s about to go to bed and there are snakes with him. Worf is subject to fear which causes him to go to his quarter and pull out a knife until Troi stops him.
Beverly also gets a hallucination where she sees dead bodies sit up before her and she tells them to ‘go away’. She later discovers that all the crew haven’t had any R.E.M sleep to cause them to dream.
The only way to get out of the Tyken’s Rift is via an explosion in space. Data gets to be acting captain and he works with Troi to contact the alien beings in her nightmares to create an explosion in space.
‘Night Terrors’ is one of those ‘TNG’ episodes where it’s difficult to decide whether it’s a bad or decent entry in the series. I don’t mind it so much, but I do not regard highly as other ‘TNG’ episodes.
‘Night Terrors’ (TNG) rating – 6/10
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