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"Star Trek: The Next Generation" Symbiosis (TV Episode 1988) Poster

Trivia

Merritt Butrick (T'Jon) and Judson Scott (Sobi) both appeared in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982) as, respectively, Kirk's son David and Khan's right hand man, Joachim.
The episode was an indictment of illegal drug addiction, especially given the country's mood at the time with President Reagan's anti-drug efforts in full swing and other programs like the DARE program becoming prominent in schools. The episode was also almost prophetic in that some drug cartels evolved a corporate structure and acted more like businessmen than criminals at the expense of drug users.
One of Merritt Butrick's final appearances before his death. His only other form of an "appearance" would be in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991) when Kirk is looking at his photograph.
The visual effect of the fluctuating force field around the Enterprise-D while near the star Delos was created by using a bowling ball which was trickled with salt. The salt bumping off the bowling ball was used and squeezed during the digital compostion and turned upside down to give this effect.
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This is one of only five TNG episodes (and the only season one episode) that doesn't have a stardate. The others are Star Trek: The Next Generation: First Contact (1991), Star Trek: The Next Generation: Tapestry (1993), Star Trek: The Next Generation: Liaisons (1993) and Star Trek: The Next Generation: Sub Rosa (1994).
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Director Win Phelps remembers, "There were many continuity problems. Down on the set, we began to notice discrepancies. Some sequences just didn't really work. The actors would say "My motivation is totally wrong here", because a previous scene would be contradictory. They were trying to act scenes that they had never read before, or were substantially different from what they had read. That didn't happen every scene, but it did happen."
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The makeup of the Ornarans would serve as the basis for the makeup of the Bajorans starting in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Ensign Ro (1991), before being streamlined on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993).
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This is the first time that we see a system interlock used with an alien transporter system showing that it is possible to interlock two different types of transporter beams. The only previous time that we see a Federation transporter working in conjunction with an alien beam is when the Enterprise intercepted an alien transporter beam and redirected it to their transporter pad in Star Trek: Assignment: Earth (1968).
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Behind-the-scenes footage and bloopers from this episode appeared on Reading Rainbow: The Bionic Bunny Show (1988), hosted by LeVar Burton. The episode presents behind-the-scenes footage including the makeup process and the filming and editing of a brief sequence on the bridge beginning with La Forge's statement "Solar flares are increasing in magnitude, Captain," featuring editing at The Post Group with Robert Legato, Fred Raimondi and Rich Thorne.
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The episode was influenced by co-executive producer Maurice Hurley's recent work on Miami Vice (1984), and was intended to have the Enterprise come across a drug deal in progress. Hurley was also responsible for the insertion of a "Just Say No" style drugs speech by Tasha Yar to Wesley Crusher, which came over the objections of the cast.
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Richard Lineback appeared on the three Star Trek spin-off series. He has played the roles of Romas in TNG: "Symbiosis", Selin Peers in DS9: "Dax" and Kessick in ENT: "The Xindi". Archive footage from his appearance in "Symbiosis" was later re-used for the second season TNG episode "Shades of Gray".
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Kenneth Tigar (Margan) later played Dammar in Star Trek: Voyager: Displaced (1997).
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This takes place in 2364.
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Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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