Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 7, Episode 10

Inheritance (20 Nov. 1993)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 573 users  
Reviews: 2 user | 3 critic

On Federation planet Atrea IV, Data encounters the former wife of his creator Noonian Soong who claims to be his "mother".

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Title: Inheritance (20 Nov 1993)

Inheritance (20 Nov 1993) on IMDb 7.5/10

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Dr. Pran Tainer (as William Lithgow)
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Storyline

Helping Etria to deal with its volcanic core, cooling it down by phaser-beam, the Enterprise hosts its top geology doctors Pran Tainer and Juliana Tainer. She claims to have assisted Dr. Noonien Soong, as his secret wife, creating Data and his 'childhood' after which his memory was wiped. He has difficulties verifying her story and dealing with her 'maternal' emotions, actually not just for him, until an accident reveals her physiological secret -which he guessed already- and is faced with his designing dad's wishes. Written by KGF Vissers

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24th century


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20 November 1993 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Fionnula Flanagan played other characters in Star Trek franchises Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Dax (1993) and Star Trek: Enterprise: Fallen Hero (2002). See more »

Goofs

(at around 30 mins) Data and Dr. Juliana are jumping off the cliff, down to the pattern enhancers. The rock that Data lands on bounces back slightly, as though its actually a trampoline of some kind. See more »

Quotes

[Dr. Tainer has praised Data's violin play]
Dr. Juliana Tainer: And considering that giving you a creative aspect was my idea. Oh, your father didn't really see the point. He thought that since you didn't have emotions, there would be no real need for you to express yourself. Somehow, I had the feeling the opposite would be true.
Lt. Commander Data: I do not know for certain. But I believe it is during my creative endeavors that I come closest to experiencing what it must be like to be human.
Dr. Juliana Tainer: Well... I'm glad I insisted.
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Connections

References Star Trek: The Next Generation: Descent: Part 2 (1993) See more »

Soundtracks

Passacaglia
(uncredited)
Written by George Frideric Handel
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User Reviews

 
Data's Mother
24 May 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This great episode is a great performance by the equally great Fionnula Flanagan as Dr. Juliana O'Donnell/Soong/Trayner.

As first, Data has reservations accepting her as his de-facto "Mother" but quickly finds a connection to her. He works well with her and he plays well with her, Spiner and Flanagan bounce off each other with Robotic Precision.

But Data discovers that the connection is more Positronic than Organic, Dr. Juliana Trayner is a little too fast when working with computers and even more so when playing music with him. This gives Data the false impression that she is also a Soong-Type Android, like he is.

But she is not quite the same - For one thing, she is not as sturdy as he is, and is damaged when Data pushes her off one of the many rock faces we see in Next Generation.

For all intents and purposes, she is the same person as the one she was built to replace, and even possibly an improvement on Data himself - She has emotions, she fools Medical Scanners into thinking she is Human, she has sweat glands, breathes, has tear ducts, and ages like any other "real" person. This episode also reveals that Data was built to "age" as well.

And, finally, Data knows beyond a doubt that he is no longer Unique in the universe. But he cannot share this discovery with Dr Trayner. Embedded in her Positronic brain is a holographic chip which Dr. Noonian Soong had put there in case anyone discovers her true nature - Particularly Data. And so this episode is the fourth and final "Data" episode, and the last TNG appearance of "Dr Noonian Often-Wrong Soong". It bookends Data's History with solid answers, now we know why and how he was left on a slab to be discovered by Starfleet on Omicron Theta- At least the reason the Juliana-Android stated. In Reality, the human version of her had been injured fatally by the Crystalline Entity.

Fionnula Flanagan is one of my favourite actresses, and I was pleased to see her here, and later in Deep Space Nine. I had seen her in all kinds of 80's television, but this was one of the best parts she had ever played. One of the best 7th season Next Gen Episodes.


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