Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 5, Episode 14

Conundrum (15 Feb. 1992)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 793 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 5 critic

When an approaching alien ship wipes their memory, the crew struggles to put back together what happened.



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Title: Conundrum (15 Feb 1992)

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Episode cast overview:
Erich Anderson ...
Commander MacDuff


The Enterprise is heading for the Epsilon solar system. A suddenly approaching alien ship uses scanners so strong that all crew members including Data lose most of their personal memories, even names and ranks, yet retain their operational and language skills. The external communications are down and computer data banks have been selectively wiped. Some, including the ship's manifest, are altered, so as to make a Commander MacDuff Executive Officer (rather then Riker) and the Enterprise is on a crucial mission in a war the Federation would be conducting for years against the Lysian race. The alien ship has been destroyed, they assume by the Enterprise, although there's no battle damage. While crew members behave differently, failing their normal reference patterns, MacDuff volunteers for a memory therapy Dr. Crusher suggests, so he can pretend for it to fail and press on the attack on the Lysian headquarters, but the war logic doesn't quite add up... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

15 February 1992 (USA)  »

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The tune Riker plays on the trombone is "The Nearness Of You" by Hoagy Carmichael. See more »


In the first scene, where Data is playing chess with Counselor Troi, he uses the contraction "I've": "... particularly since I've already taken both of your rooks." For whatever reason, Data has a reputation for being unable to use verbal contractions. See more »


[Dr. Crusher has treated Kristin's shoulder with a medical device despite having lost her memory previously]
Doctor Beverly Crusher: I didn't even think. I just picked it up and knew how to use it. At least I have an idea of what I'm doing here.
Kristin: But... what about me? I mean, I'm a patient in a bathing suit. That doesn't say much.
See more »


References Lost in Space (1965) See more »


Star Trek: The Next Generation End Credits
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

A devious plot, that's for sure!
23 November 2014 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

"Conundrum" is a really cool episode--with a very interesting and very devious plot. The Enterprise comes upon a strange ship. The ship begins scanning the Enterprise and suddenly EVERYONE (including Data) has their memory wiped. The ship is now filled with crew who have no idea who they are and who is in charge. It's interesting how some of the crew change personalities or assume things--such as Ro suddenly NOT being an angry and disagreeable lady and Worf automatically assuming HE is the Captain! But it gets VERY devious when you realize that there is a NEW second in command--a Commander McDuff. And, even more devious is that the computer system has been altered to tell them that they've been at war with the Lysians for years and are to proceed to Lysian space to destroy them!! So, the evil aliens at the beginning of the show are using the Enterprise and its crew to destroy their enemies! Nice folks, huh? So will the Enterprise figure out what's happening before it's too late?

This is a terrific episode with one huge problem--why didn't the aliens just make McDuff the Captain?! Then, their evil plan would have gone without a hitch. Still, despite this, the show is a really novel idea and impressed me because of this. Plus, I LIKE devious!!

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