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19 out of 29 people found the following review useful:

A show about humor and adventure, without either.

4/10
Author: Robert Vasquez (Robert-8) from Kenmore, WA
15 July 2008

After too many bad memories, I took to skipping this episode each time it showed up in the Season 2 sequence. I recently watched it again just to remind me why. I've always considered this the worst ST:TNG episode (with the exception of "Shades of Gray," which barely counts as an episode at all).

I keep listening to the clunky dialogue and thinking of the script red-penciled by the author's Writing 101 teacher: "SHOW, DON'T TELL!" From Deanna Troi's pronouncement, and everyone else's constant elbowing reminders about what a charming, dangerous rogue Okona is, to Guinan's explanation about how funny her droid joke is (it isn't), to the who-cares resolution to the conflict, there isn't a plot point that isn't highlighted and triple-underlined for our edification, and there ain't a believable moment in any of it. Unfortunately, Bill Campbell, a charming actor in other circumstances, is too puppy-dog huggable to be the center of the machinations of the plot. On the other hand, it could be that no one short of John Barrowman (Jack Harkness from "Doctor Who") could pull of this underwritten placeholder of a role.

(Zero points, by the way, to the Data subplot. While I think Joe Piscopo stopped being funny decades ago, he and Brent Spiner had nothing to work with here. Although the Jerry Lewis bit was funny in a stupid way.)

On a good day, you may be able to think of this as a charming little homage to a lesser Original Series episode. Me, I'd rather skip ahead to "Time Squared" or "Q Who."

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13 out of 21 people found the following review useful:

quality episode

Author: thebigeasy555 from Ireland
4 April 2006

although this greatly differs from the usual format,this still has quality acting and an interesting storyline. Data steals the show trying to search for the most endearing human quality-humour.Assisted by guinan he attempts in his own original way to discover it.With the aid of the holodeck a comedy club is created complete with comic(joe piscopo)and an audience.Original use of the hollow deck like this showed why it's addition to the series was a fantastic idea.Also the appearance of the lovable rogue Captain Okona is a breath of fresh air for this episode.without a doubt data's performance in the comedy club is one of my favourite star treking moments

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5 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Before he was the Rocketeer!

8/10
Author: bluesnaggletooth316
18 August 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This was one of the highlights of ST:TNG's semi-forgettable second season, before they 'grew up' or grew into their own in the third season and beyond. This was not only a showcase for up-and-comers like Bill Campbell and Teri Hatcher, but was also the continuation of Data's search for his 'humanity', this time through the concept of comedy. Still one of my favorite episodes.

On a side-note, I'm still disappointed that there is no credit for the actress with whose character Okona was about to have a tryst(after Teri Hatcher's character) before being rudely interrupted by Lt Worf. I remember watching this episode 'first-run' at my friends comic shop back in the day and we all thought she would've been a perfect Jean Grey/Marvel Girl.

It would be nice to know who this pretty lady actually is...

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6 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

Comedy

Author: russem31 from United States
14 April 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

ST:TNG:30 - "The Outrageous Okona" (Stardate: 42402.7) - this is the 4th episode to go into production for season 2. For the first time, The Next Generation veers towards comedy, as Data attempts to master the human ability to tell jokes and laugh. In order to do so, he gets help from the Holodeck Comic, played by Joe Piscopo, as well as Whoopi Goldberg as Guinan, who makes her second appearance in TNG. At the same time, the Enterprise must deal with a family quarrel involving two different planets as well as a Don Juan character who is The Outrageous Okona. Oh, and look out for a young Teri Hatcher as Transporter Chief Lt. Bronwyn Gail Robinson!

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Easy to skip but harmless

5/10
Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
12 November 2014

The "Star Trek: The Next Generation" folks obviously were trying for a comedic change of pace for the series. Season one had been dreadfully serious and a bit slow--so I do appreciate the effort. However, there really isn't a lot that is funny here--and that's odd since that seems to be the purpose of this episode.

When the episode begins, Captain Okana is having engine problems with his run-down old freighter. The Enterprise, always eager to please and establish contact with various races, offers to help. However, it will take some time and so Okana comes over to the Enterprise to relax, look around and score with as many women as is humanly possible!! By the end of the episode, however, Okana's roguish ways come back to haunt him, as his reputation in this part of space is less than stellar.

The other main plot involves Data. As always, he's trying to get in touch with what it's like to be human. In this case, he's investigating humor and enlists the help of an unnamed holodeck comic (Joe Piscopo) to give him pointers. The problem is that it all comes off as VERY rehearsed and the jokes are exceptionally corny. Guinan tries to help. Oddly, while this portion has to do with humor, NOTHING about it made me smile or laugh and was by far the weakest aspect of the episode.

Overall, not a lot to this one. Pleasant and engaging at best...a bit of a waste of time, perhaps, as well.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Tip O'Neil in a dress with a briefcase shaped like a fish

10/10
Author: XweAponX from United States
4 July 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

The Enterprise happens across a solar system with two planets both touting technology about 100 years or more behind The Federation. And an Outrageous Hitchhiker, whose "'car' is broken down on the side of the road"-Captain Okona (Billy Campbell from "The 4400")-Who almost immediately hits on a gorgeous Transporter Chief played by Teri Hatcher.

Okona's engaging personality, and humor, cause Data to examine the concept of Humor. To this end, he creates a Holodeck Facsimile of a 20th Century Comedian: Joe Piscopo, who tries to instruct him in the fine art of making people Laugh. But Data fails to grasp any of it, which in turn makes this one of the most hilarious episodes of ST:TNG. There is a classic meeting between "Guinan" (Whoopee Goldberg) and Piscopo, where she asks him, "You made a Living doing this?" - Irony is one of the best forms of Humour, which this episode uses in all of the little vignettes being played out.

One small spaceship appears and starts locking Lasers on the Enterprise, which would not do much. Then another craft appears from the other side of the system, and does the same thing: But they both want Okona. As the second ship appears, Worf mumbles: "Another Globfly" and Picard has to shut Data up before he expounds just what a Globfly is for two hours.

Okona of course is being pursued by the leaders of the two planets, he is accused of stealing a priceless gem from one planet, and impregnating a Princess on the other. The Princess is Rosalind Allen (From SeaQuest DSV). On the other side, is "Prince" Benzan (Kieran Mulroney, writer of "Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows")-whose father is chasing Okona because he stole some "National Treasure."

Okona initially takes refuge in Picard's Hospitality, but when the two opposing ships appear, Picard has to ask him if he had an ulterior motive for coming on-board (Other than seducing three different Enterprise Crew Women).

But the two leaders both want Okona's head, he has to choose which ship to be beamed to, Okona chooses to agree to a shotgun wedding with Yanar (Allen). When Benzan Objects to this, the truth comes out: The two leaders cannot get along, but their children have gotten along just fine, producing a child!

As the situation changes from the threat of the two leaders fighting, to the two leaders arguing about which planet the couple will get married on, the threat diffuses, and Okona can go on his way, leaving Data with some memorable studies in Humor: To which Guinan states: "To be funny is not the end all or be-all of being Human" but Data disagrees, as he sees nothing more Uniquely Human than to be Funny. It takes him a few more years, and the implantation of Soong's Emotion Chip to eventually come to grasp with Humor.

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11 out of 20 people found the following review useful:

Comedy episode

Author: Tiffinki from United States
5 February 2006

This is a humorous episode of Star Trek NextGen. Although it has been bashed heavily, it is really a lighthearted story. It does get sappy at certain moments, but it's good for a few laughs. Okona is a good character for a single episode, as rakish rogues go.

This episode contains one of the rare moments in which we get to see Guinan in a place other than Ten-Forward.

All in all, it is a good step away from the usual Trek story lines and the creators had the good form to not make another one exactly like it. It stands as a fairly unique episode, quite funny, but if the creators had modeled another story after it, that would have been walking into a big bear trap.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Frivolously entertaining

6/10
Author: Mr-Fusion from United States
6 May 2016

Data doesn't get jokes and spends his free time in he holodeck being schooled by Joe Piscopo. That's how you know you're in for a comedy episode. That and the crew runs into a pirate who needs repairs (a pre-Rocketeer Bill Campbell) and also has a knack for attracting the finest ladies on the ship and getting a feud going between two royal families. It's all serious business onboard this ship.

Lightweight comedy isn't usually TNG's forte, but this mostly works. Campbell is dashing, the women are gorgeous (hellooo, Teri Hatcher) and Guinan ends up filling in for an absent Pulaski in coaching Data in the ways of humans (and does a much better job of it, too).

Watching it again, I was actually kinda bummed this was a one-off for Okona. Thought for sure they'd follow in the Mudd footsteps from The Original Series.

6/10

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1 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

The Outrageous Okona

6/10
Author: Scarecrow-88 from United States
3 June 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Bill Campbell guest-stars as a confident ladies' man, Captain Okona, quite a charmer who has a way with women, tractor beamed by the Enterprise so Geordi can repair a part for his freighter. Two ships, with only laser weaponry, inferior to the Enterprise in every way, represent two planets, both wanting Campbell's Okona for his "crimes" (one for stealing a precious jewel, the other for impregnating the ambassador's daughter!). Meanwhile, Data goes to the Holodeck, enlisting in the aid of a comic on how to be funny so he can interact better with humans on board the Enterprise. Data also confides in Ten Forward's Guinan (Whoopi Goldberg) for extra guidance. An adequate time-waster, with a fun performance from the likable Campbell, including a guest-spot by Joe Piscopo who provides some less-than-stellar jokes to Data for use. Nothing about this episode is that particularly noteworthy except that it gives Picard a role as arbitrator to get to the bottom of how to settle the whole Okona mess as it pertains to two mad families with scores to settle. Includes "hey that's…" small role (before they were stars) Teri Hatcher (Desperate Housewives; Lois and Clark) as one of Okona's yummy conquests. This episode was shortly before Campbell starred in The Rocketeer. Campbell has good chemistry with Wil Wheaton (Wesley Crusher) and Levar Burton (Geordi LaForge) and brings a smile to your face because of his easy-going nature. He is dressed like a swashbuckler, carries a confident swagger, and looks Worf dead in the eyes without flinching when ordered to report to the Bridge to meet with Picard.

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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Data 10--Okona 1

7/10
Author: Hitchcoc from United States
5 August 2014

I seem to enjoy the episodes where Commander Data goes on a quest of understanding of the human mind. In this one, he enlists the help of Joe Piscopo (what ever happened to him?) to figure out how to be funny. Of course, he would have the capacity to memorize every joke in the universe if he wished, but this doesn't explain why some people get laughs and others are silenced out. He is so diligent, trying to copy old routines and tell stale jokes in front of a holodeck audience. Meanwhile, a really worthless major plot is going on. Some young stud, zooming around in a cargo ship, has found himself aboard the enterprise when his ship breaks down. He is a free spirit and starts to put the make on every interplanetary fashion model on board the ship. He starts to become a real nuisance, when it gets worse. There are leaders of two warring planets that are after his hide. It seems that he may have impregnated a beautiful young woman, the daughter of one of the planet's emissaries. The other leader accuses him of stealing an heirloom gem of great value. Picard is caught in the middle of a fight he has no interest in. However, Okona, who is jumping from bed to bed, is on his ship and, he feels, his responsibility. This could have been a hillbilly drama or a nouveau Romeo and Juliet. The main story is much weaker than the comedic Data.

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