Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 3, Episode 4

Who Watches the Watchers (14 Oct. 1989)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Mystery
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 1,190 users  
Reviews: 15 user | 7 critic

A proto-Vulcan culture worships Captain Picard and prepares to offer Counselor Troi as a sacrifice.



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Episode cast overview:
Wesley Crusher (credit only)
James Greene ...
Oji (as Pamela Segall)
John McLiam ...
James McIntire ...
Lois Hall ...
Dr. Mary Warren


The "Enterprise" is to provide technical assistance to a 3-man anthropological field team on the planet Mintaka III, which is observing, in hiding, the Vulcanoid Bronze Age native population. When the holographic hiding place is ravaged by an explosion, the landing party and its advanced technology are observed by two natives, one of whom, Liko, gets hurt badly and is beamed up for life-saving treatment; Picard orders his short-term memory wiped out to prevent a breach of the Prime Directive, but that fails as Commander William Riker and Counselor Deanna Troi find out, after they are beamed down again, temporarily altered to resemble Mintakans, to look for missing anthropologist Palmer: this culture now revives an abandoned belief in a supernatural overseer, worships the Picard, and soon ponders to offer Counselor Troi as a human sacrifice.... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

14 October 1989 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


This takes place in 2366. See more »


The bow used in the show is a compound bow, a bow that has wheels or cams to increase power. A species at this point in their evolution would still be using a standard straight or re-curve bow. See more »


Nuria: [after being shown around the Enterprise] Perhaps one day, my people will travel above the skies.
Captain Jean-Luc Picard: Of that, I have absolutely no doubt.
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Referenced in Star Trek: Insurrection (1998) See more »


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

great story
18 January 2007 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I was watching back through the first three seasons to select episodes that would make a good sampling for a friend of mine; this episode is the one (out of the first three seasons) that I would be absolutely certain to recommend to anyone. It requires little to no background information and tells an engaging story. Also, to my recollection, no other episode conveys so well the wonder of reason and cultural progress.

Just as another reviewer observed about The Inner Light (my personal favorite), this episode shows that sci-fi, at its best, is not so much about the technology as it is about good storytelling.

54 of 56 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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