The Enterprise is conducting a security sweep in an area near the Neutral Zone when they are probed by what Captain Picard thinks may be a secret Romulan base. Commander Riker, who has just... See full summary »

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Ensign Wesley Crusher (credit only)
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Storyline

The Enterprise is conducting a security sweep in an area near the Neutral Zone when they are probed by what Captain Picard thinks may be a secret Romulan base. Commander Riker, who has just had a birthday, leads an away team composed of Geordi and Lt. Worf when they are overcome by methane gas. He awakens in Dr. Crusher's sick bay to be told that he is now Captain of the Enterprise - and his last memory of being on the methane gas planet occurred 16 years ago. Dr. Crusher tells him he's been in a coma for 10 days as a result of an attack of encephalitis which has also caused his memory loss. He has several surprises in store not the least of which is that he is a widower and has a son. He's also supposed to be negotiating a major treaty with the Romulans. There are anomalies however and nothing is as it appears. Written by garykmcd

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TV-PG
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10 November 1990 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

With the premiere of this episode, Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) officially surpassed the number of episodes that Star Trek (1966) had. See more »

Goofs

When Riker and Ethan are hiding, Ethan shows off his plans of the base, which are on transparent plastic. In a close-up shot, however, the plans have changed into onionskin paper. See more »

Quotes

"Ambassador" Jean-Luc Picard: [a virus has robbed Riker of the last 16 years of his memory] To lose 16 years is almost beyond belief.
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Connections

References 36 Hours (1964) See more »

Soundtracks

Star Trek: The Next Generation Main Title
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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Rip Van Riker
22 August 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is one of those episodes that keeps us engaged all the way along. I have to say that I am bothered by how it ends (but I won't spoil that). This is a case of parry and thrust throughout. Riker is on a planet where suspected Romulan shenanigans are going on. The away team is overcome by heavy methane gas and pass out. When Riker wakes up, he is on board the Enterprise, but the crew (except for Data) have grown older. He, himself, has wrinkled skin and a bit of gray in his hair. Beverly looks older. He is told that he has been leading a life on board the ship, but has had a recurrence of a fever. He has lost sixteen years of his life. He can only remember that which happened before they went to that planet. It turns out he has a son and had a wife who died. The Romulans have become allies with the Federation and are kindly and outgoing. Something is wrong. There is a touching scene where he meets his son and tries to bond with him. Unfortunately, nothing brings back a single memory. Fascinating effort.


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