Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 2, Episode 16

Q Who? (6 May 1989)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 8.8/10 from 1,025 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 8 critic

Q tries to prove that Picard needs him as part of their crew by hurling the Enterprise 7,000 light years away where they encounter the Borg for the first time.



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Title: Q Who? (06 May 1989)

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Episode cast overview:
Q (as John deLancie)


Q pays the Enterprise another visit, much to Captain Picard's disapproval. He wants Q to keep his part of their earlier bargain and stay away. Q insists that Picard needs him on his side and to prove his point, hurls the Enterprise far into the galaxy. There, the Enterprise crew meet the Borg and their strange, cube-like space craft. The Borg are a race that is part biological and part machine that exists within a collective consciousness. They are also a formidable foe that can out power, out run and out fight the Enterprise. With their shields weakened, it's left to Picard to decide if they really do need Q's help. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Release Date:

6 May 1989 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The Borg were originally conceived as being a race of insects (as featured in the Season 1 episode Star Trek: The Next Generation: Conspiracy (1988). Budget restrictions meant that the decision was made to go with cyborgs instead. Nevertheless the episode still went $50,000 over budget. See more »


As Guinan warns Picard to protect the Enterprise from the Borg, Picard orders the shields raised. Moments later, even though the shields are active, the Borg beam over. Considering that they are technologically much more advanced, it is conceivable that they may have found a way to transport through shields. See more »


Capt. Picard: [to Q] You wanted to frighten us. We're frightened. You wanted to show us that we were inadequate. For the moment... I grant that. You wanted me to say, 'I need you'? I *need* you!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The episode's credits begin a full minute after the theme music. See more »


References Star Trek: The Next Generation: Hide and Q (1987) See more »


Star Trek: The Next Generation Main Title
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

my favorite!
5 April 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

How I love this episode! Of all the Next Generations, this episode is still my favorite. Words cant describe the chill that went down my spine when they first encounter the Borg in the engine room. I think what I enjoy the most about it is the fact that the producers, writers and directors seemed to be working in complete harmony with regards to every faucet of the shows production. Comparatively, there is also very little background music, which to me only heightened the tensions inherent in the scenario. In an old issue of a European film magazine, they once had an issue dedicated to ST:TNG where they had a brief synopsis of every episode as well as behind the scene stories. With regards to this episode, it was said that Patrick Stewart actually grew angry with some members of the crew because they were goofing around and not taking things more seriously. He stated that it was a particularly difficult episode to do because of the themes introduced...and the fact that for the first time there was a large number of crew killed in the storyline. He thought the fact that they were encountering an enemy that had the capability to defeat them...and was actually on the verge of doing so before Q interceded...had a profound impact on how the mood of the shoot progressed.

As for myself, I enjoyed it so much because of those very reasons! In the entire history of Star Trek and through all of its incarnations, the rosy, happy or optimistic nature of the shows sometimes tended to overwhelm. This seemed to be a very realistic encounter...especially when you consider that the vast majority of the episodes or films that introduce a new species or culture invariably resolve in a very optimistic manner. Q Who simply, but effectively, went the other way and showed us a reality in which the Enterprise, and the Federation itself, was NOT up to the challenge and was very nearly doomed.

Like the episode, "Yesterday's Enterprise," all was not well in the universe and there was death without reason or there is in real life. It was the first time that the Enterprise and crew had simply run out of options and/or hope of survival...and it was that theme that made the episode so strong.

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