Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 7, Episode 16

Thine Own Self (12 Feb. 1994)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 596 users  
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Data is sent to follow a probe that has drifted off course and crashed on a primitive planet, only to crash on the planet, himself, with no memory of any event prior to crashing on the planet's surface.

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
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Ronnie Claire Edwards ...
Talur
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Garvin
Kimberly Cullum ...
Gia
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Skoran (as Michael G. Hagerty)
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Apprentice (as Andy Kossin)
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Rainer (as Richard Ortega-Miro)
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Storyline

During a mission to repair a probe which crashed on a planet with a Renaissance culture, an explosion damages Data bad enough to cause amnesia. He is taken in by villager Garvin and his arrogant wife, a teacher who puts him in her class. Before she's convinced of Data's scientific superiority by experiments, the nuclear material he carried has caused radiation sickness. Meanwhile Deanna decides to take her bridge officer exams, supervised by Riker, but keeps failing the engineering emergency test- or is it really something else? Written by KGF Vissers

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12 February 1994 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Troi thinking the Bridge Officer's Test is a no-win situation recalls the Kobayashi Maru test from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (1982). See more »

Goofs

When Data puts down the anvil, it keeps rocking on the uneven ground for a short while, showing that the anvil is in fact very light. See more »

Quotes

Gia: We didn't know his real name. So we called him Jayden.
[... ]
Gia: What was his real name?
Commander William T. Riker: Data.
Gia: Data... He was my friend too.
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Connections

References Star Trek: The Next Generation: Lower Decks (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

 
Data and Troi define themselves
10 September 2013 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

In the case of Data in that a bombardment of radiation has crashed his Positronic Net. For Troi in that she has decided to become a Bridge Officer and will take the Command test.

It becomes clear that only Data's short term memory and identity have been affected, not his ability to learn and adapt. In "Eye of the Beholder" Data tells Geordi that when faced with a choice between erasing his Brain or letting his brain adapt naturally to his upper data storage limit of "800 quadrillion bits (100,000 TB)" and possibly Malfunctioning, he chose the latter despite the risk. In this episode, the former has appeared to have happened: His Brain seems to have been erased.

But it appears that Data still has the experience he garnered in the years since his activation: He knows that various combinations of Elements comprise Matter, and that objects don't really have "Fire/Air/Water or Earth" in them simply because they are hot, or a Liquid, or are a Vapor or are hard like a stone. He also has his rational, reasoning mind and his ability for Language- Even though he has forgotten the Context of his language.

Because he has forgotten the context of the word "Radioactive" a dangerous material gets distributed into a Pre-Industrial colony of people, a people who although are interested in the Scientific Method, have not quite learned how to discard their religious and spiritual biases.

And it is making these people ill, and the more ill they get, the more fear and loathing they have for "Jaden" who they have labeled as an "Iceman" - Using the Label as a derogatory reference and the De-Facto cause of their ills.

Meanwhile, Troi is able to pass the basic menial parts of the test, but she can't seem to get one particular aspect of Command - One which she had been forced to grapple with in the 5th season, 5th Episode "Disaster" and she was the highest ranking living Bridge officer left, forced to take command. In fact it was that very "Disaster" that had caused Troi to seek the Bridge Officer's test, so why can't she remember the basic tenet of Command which she had to face back then?

The answer is in her face, but because she is not really in that situation while being tested, it eludes her, until she catches on to Riker's Clue about the First Duty of a Commander.

Data himself has to face a test of the same sort, only in his case, he uses the inverse of the solution to the Bridge Officer's test, or rather he applies that solution to himself.

Down on the planet where "Data/Jaden" is, there is a feast of great Character Actors: Mike Hagerty is "Skoran" - You will remember Mike from "Redemption, part II" as the "Piece of Bak-Tag" that tried to kill Worf and Kurn, but who Kurn evaporated using a warp-induced Solar Flare. Same kind of guy here. Ronnie Claire Edwards aka " Corabeth Walton" in The Waltons is Talur, a Teacher who claims 'Scientific Method' but who in fact uses Witchcraft to explain her world and how it works. But the best, is Kimberly Cullum as "Gia" - Another little girl who gets attached to Data like Sarjenka (Nikki Cox) in Season 2 "Pen Pals".

These character and child actors were the life's blood of The Next Generation. Used in this episode, they create a Trek "Planet" episode that is realistic and believable. And once again Data saves a Little Girl and her whole town, but in this case, he is the one who gets his memory wiped of the incident. So in a way, this episode bookends "Pen Pals" in both the A and B story- Troi is the one extending her limits as Wesley was in Pen Pals, and Data once again defies the Prime Directive to save a girl he cares for, although he will not remember it.


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