Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 1, Episode 8

The Battle (14 Nov. 1987)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
6.9
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The Enterprise is kept waiting for days on a mysterious rendezvous with Ferenge 'daimon' (captain) Bok's spaceship, then receives a gift which stuns Picard: the USS Stargazer, the lost ... See full summary »

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Title: The Battle (14 Nov 1987)

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The Enterprise is kept waiting for days on a mysterious rendezvous with Ferenge 'daimon' (captain) Bok's spaceship, then receives a gift which stuns Picard: the USS Stargazer, the lost vessel he commanded in a legendary battle, won by inventing a now classic maneuver. He goes aboard to recover some belongings and takes it in tow, but suffers worrying headaches and starts behaving erratically, until he leaves the Enterprise for it. Data works out Bok's motivation for the gift against his race's mercantile attitude, which even gets him removed from command. Wesley notices very peculiar waves. Written by KGF Vissers

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14 November 1987 (USA)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Goofs

It is stated later in the series that Betazoids cannot read the minds of species with uncommon brain anatomy including the Ferengi, however, Deanna Troi is able to sense deception and evil intent on the part of Daimon Bok. See more »

Quotes

Doctor Beverly Crusher: Something unusual has definitely been happening to you.
Captain Jean-Luc Picard: Why do doctors always say the obvious, as though it's a revelation?
Doctor Beverly Crusher: Why do captains always act like they're immortal?
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Referenced in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Bloodlines (1994) See more »

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

Medicine, Military Tactics, and Thought Control Devices in the Star Trek World
15 September 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"The Battle" (Episode 8, Season 1, Air Date 11/16/87, Star-date 41723.9) consists of a revenge story by an angry Ferengi father (named Bok), rare medical mysteries, and thought control devices. I initially thought the episode didn't have much to offer (and I still think it's on the light side of ideas), but we do learn a few interesting things about the Star Trek world.

The revengeful Ferengi (DaiMon Bok) spent his life accumulating money to buy two thought disruptors (and amplifiers) to use against Picard. He uses this technology to send thoughts to Picard, create painful sensations in Picard's mind (just a headache at first), and force Picard to have delusions.

Bok is able to take control of Picard and force him to relive past memories. First Bok gives Star Fleet a gift of Picard's old USS Stargazer ship. His goal is to use his thought manipulator devise to get Picard to transport over to the Stragazer and attack the Enterprise, thinking it was the old Ferengi vessel from 9 years prior. All of this is done through signals sent to Picard's mind and to get Picard killed.

Bok also creates fake log entries to create false evidence against Picard, and in general to make Captain Picard feel disoriented and regretful of destroying a Ferengi vessel at the battle of Maxia. (Bok's son was the DaiMon of that vessel.) In any case, I was interested to see a discussion on Star Fleet medical advancements. Headaches are so rare that Dr. Crusher can't believe Picard even has one. Apparently, the Star Trek world has advanced so much that it has mapped most of the causes of pain in the brain.

Plus we continue to get glimpses into command structure, for only Dr. Crusher can order Picard around (to require him to have further medical testing). We also saw this in 'Lonley Among Us' (episode 6, Season 1) in which the crew had to make certain Picard was under alien influence before relieving him of command (the First Officer could do it if he was certain of an alien influence and had the consent of the other top officers, but Dr. Crusher could relieve Picard on her own if she had medical evidence of unfitness).

We also get to see a very cool military maneuver, now called the Picard Maneuver, in which he once quickly went into warp speed to make it appear that his ship was in two places at once so that an enemy vessel might fire on the wrong image of his ship.

A few minor themes include Data's search for any tampering in Picard's old log files. Data also uses his advanced reasoning to create a counter to the Picard Maneuver. It's good to have an android on hand! So I saw two main SF themes: medical advancements and ship military tactics in the Star Trek world. I have seen the tag 'SF military' (or thereabouts) on Amazon and other sites, so many films and books are built around the theme of SF war in the future. This episode is in that tradition, with the addition of a revenge story, medical mystery, and thought control devices. We also find out more about Picard's history and Data's abilities.


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