The Enterprise pursues a race of "gatherers" who continue to raid Federation outposts, unaware of the dangers lurking among them.



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Episode cast overview:
Nancy Parsons ...
Sovereign Marouk
Elkanah Burns ...
Temarek (as Elkanah J. Burns)


The Enterprise is transporting the Sovereign Marouk in an attempt to get a break away group of her people to return to the fold, so to speak. They broke away almost 100 years ago and and are now known as the Gatherers, a band of scavengers forever raiding and scavenging anything they can get their hands on. Marouk is prepared to offer them an amnesty but there is a great deal of mistrust between them. Commander Riker meanwhile takes an interest in Marouk's cook Yuta, but the attention of the crew is diverted to finding a saboteur when one of the Gatherers is killed. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

scavenger | cook | alien | death | murder | See All (60) »




Release Date:

18 November 1989 (USA)  »

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Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Volnath's armor is made of recycled Borg costuming. See more »


One of the Gatherers pours liquid from a pitcher it is clear. When Brull takes the chalice he pours it onto Temarek's face the liquid is now white. See more »


Sovereign Marouk: You people haven't changed in a hundred years!
Brull: You should know. You were there!
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Star Trek: The Next Generation Main Title
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

I don't think the "Stun" setting would have worked.
17 November 2014 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

And, any excuse to have a great vaporization is worth seeing. Starting from this seasons episode "the high ground", this show had less vaporizations than before. Probably because it's cheaper just to have sparky phaser hits.

The main story here deals with a group of people who live like Capt. Jack Sparrow, stealing things to live. The Acamarian "Gatherers".

Well, Picard has had enough, so he grabs the High Faluto of Acamaria and then hunts down a group of gatherers. That's where we see Mark Lawrence's next generation cameo. He will show up a few years later in Deep Space 9 as "Mr. Zimo". Remember, this is the crook who gets killed at the beginning of "the man with the golden gun". So it was great to see one of my favorite character actors show up in Trek.

While Picard sets out to gather up all of the gatherers, Will Riker starts having eyes for one of the servants, "Yuta". But when she cannot perform sexually as anybody but a slave, he starts wondering what has been done to her. Riker's interest coincides with Crusher's medical investigation, and something terrible was discovered.

That is one of the mysteries of this episode, and that is what invalidates the so-called "goof" of this episode. She speaks about how she was changed, changed so she can pursue vengeance for the rest of her clan who was killed. She is the last of her clan, changed irrevocably to live forever until she fulfills her purpose. So she has no life, no choice but to do what she needs to do.

That is why I don't really think she could've just been jailed or stunned. I don't think the brig would've held her, and there was nothing else but to prevent her from touching her victim. And Will was the one who had discovered what she was: So it was his responsibility to stop her.

So I don't think he needed to have a reason to show up with a phaser on a ship where Picard is having a delicate meeting- I don't consider the ending of this as a goof of any sort. It was a hard choice that Will Riker had to make. And he didn't like having to make it.

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