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First Contact 

Disguised as an alien prior to First Contact, Will's life becomes imperiled when incurred injuries reveal his foreign internal structure to a xenophobic alien population.


Cliff Bole


Gene Roddenberry (created by), Dennis Bailey (teleplay by) (as Dennis Russell Bailey) | 9 more credits »




Episode complete credited cast:
Patrick Stewart ... Capt. Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes ... Cmdr. William Riker
LeVar Burton ... Lt. Cmdr. Geordi La Forge (credit only)
Michael Dorn ... Lt. Worf
Gates McFadden ... Dr. Beverly Crusher
Marina Sirtis ... Counselor Deanna Troi
Brent Spiner ... Lt. Cmdr. Data
George Coe ... Chancellor Durken
Carolyn Seymour ... Mirasta Yale
George Hearn ... Dr. Berel
Michael Ensign ... Minister Krola
Steven Anderson ... Dr. Nilrem
Sachi Parker ... Dr. Tava
Bebe Neuwirth ... Lanel


Commander William Riker has been on an acculturation mission under an alias for months on the Malcorian planet, surgically altered to appear as a local, but he gets badly wounded, beyond their medical skills to correct because his internal organs are unknown to them. Captain Jean-Luc Picard decides to speed up his official diplomatic approach (a.k.a. First Contact protocols) and intercede on Riker's behalf, but they are told by a fascinated, open-minded Malcorian scientist that her planet's culture is particularly xenophobic and would reject any alien as being unequal to them. The Malcorian government keeps the matter secret but is internally divided: while Chancellor Durken is in favor of Riker's release without his people finding out and establishing friendly relations with the Federation, his powerful security minister, Krola, is prepared to go to any length to preserve their traditional way of life, including framing Riker for murder. Written by KGF Vissers/edited by statmanjeff

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


TV-PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Bebe Neuwirth was working on Cheers (1982) at the same time. In order to dovetail her schedule, it was sometimes necessary for her to go through makeup with TNG, then skip across the lot to rehearse with Cheers (in alien makeup), then return to TNG to finish makeup and shoot. She reported that the Cheers cast appreciated the humorous distraction (glued to her face). See more »


If the Federation has been observing the Malcorians for some time, including with field agents on the planet for several years, then why does it come as such a surprise and concern that the Malcorians consider themselves supreme beings at the center of the universe? See more »


Chancellor Durken: You speak the language of diplomacy very well, Captain. It's a language I appreciate and understand, but I have learned to not always trust it.
See more »


Referenced in Star Trek: Enterprise: Broken Bow (2001) See more »


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

We come in peace...
19 November 2014 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

Commander Riker is observing the Arkonians. However, to do so and remain unobserved, he's had cosmetic surgeries, as the society does not yet realize that there are any other beings out there in space. But, this society soon will have warp drives and will be able to learn for themselves about the Federation and other worlds. So, in anticipation of this, Riker is observing. Unfortunately, he's badly injured...and the Arkonian doctors are astonished to see that he's not one of them! This forces the Federation to speed up first contact, and so Picard lands and meets with one of their top scientists and then their leader. But, amazingly, the leader is NOT that excited about first contact. It seems that his society is very ego-centric and the notion that anyone else could exist in the universe is something many will not accept. So, he is torn--between publicly acknowledging that aliens indeed do exist or remaining willingly ignorant of the outside worlds.

So much of this episode has parallels to Earth since the late 1940s when stories of UFOs first began circulating. This, and the odd reaction to aliens of the people make this one well worth seeing.

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Release Date:

16 February 1991 (USA) See more »

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Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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