Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 3, Episode 5

The Bonding (21 Oct. 1989)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Ratings: 6.6/10 from 797 users  
Reviews: 8 user | 6 critic

A startling surprise awaits the crew of the Enterprise when a mission costs the life of a crew member, who left her son behind.



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Title: The Bonding (21 Oct 1989)

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Episode cast overview:
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Beaming down to the ruined planet of the Quaenonians, a race extinguished by self-destruction, an Enterprise landing party loses in an explosion the life of the crew archaeologist Lt. Marla Aster, who leaves behind a teenager son, Jeremy. After Lieutenant Worf, the Klingon orphan raised by humans who commanded his mother's landing party, talked with Jeremy, while Wesley Crusher, the crew member closest in age to the boy, still needs to consider how to share the experience of being orphaned, suddenly a woman appears, who pretends to Jeremy to be his late mother, coming to take him to their new home on the planet, where some activity is observed, which even taps into the ships own energy. When Deanna Troi convinces the boy neither his mother nor a safe home on the planet can be real, she disappears, the ship is attacked, she reappears and an energy form intrudes the Enterprise. Maybe persuasion works better in his interest on Jeremy's would be-substitute mother, who explains the ... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

21 October 1989 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) debut of writer Ronald D. Moore, who later rose to stardom as creator of the acclaimed, re-imagined Battlestar Galactica (2004). See more »


[the mother of Jeremy, a little boy, has died in an away mission]
Commander William T. Riker: Do you know Jeremy well?
Wesley Crusher: [shakes his head] But I know what this is gonna be like for him.
Commander William T. Riker: That's part of life in Starfleet, Wesley.
Wesley Crusher: I know. They're very careful to prepare us for anything. But still...
Commander William T. Riker: I know.
Wesley Crusher: How do you get used to it? The telling them?
Commander William T. Riker: You hope you never do.
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Star Trek: The Next Generation End Credits
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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Death comes a knocking.
15 November 2014 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

During a seemingly routine away team mission to a planet long wiped out by some war, an away team member is accidentally killed by some ancient war device left behind. Lt. Marla Aster's death and its consequences are the subject of this episode. As for her son, Jeremy, he is very stoic and needs to react emotionally to her death. Because of this, Wesley is asked to talk to the boy about his own father's death. But it's not only him--Worf is also affected strongly. Because of his own issues as an orphan, Worf's planning on asking Jeremy to join him in the Ruus'tai ceremony--by which Klingons become blood brothers or sisters. However, what happens next...well THAT certainly wasn't expected!! To see what this is, try watching "The Bonding".

While this episode is all about death and is a serious downer, it is interesting and worth exploring this aspect of space exploration. Very emotional and it might just bring a tear to your eye as the characters discuss their own losses. Also, what happens to the boy is really strange...but in a very good way, as the planet feels bad about what has happened and tries, in a way, to make things better.

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