6.8/10
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The Outcast 

While aiding an androgynous race who lost a couple of members in an unmapped region of space, Riker falls for one of them, which can lead to trouble if detected, since the alien race does not endorse gender specificity.

Director:

Robert Scheerer

Writers:

Gene Roddenberry (created by), Jeri Taylor
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Cast

Episode complete credited cast:
Patrick Stewart ... Capt. Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes ... Cmdr. William Riker
LeVar Burton ... Lt. Cmdr. Geordi La Forge
Michael Dorn ... Lt. Worf
Gates McFadden ... Dr. Beverly Crusher
Marina Sirtis ... Counselor Deanna Troi
Brent Spiner ... Lt. Cmdr. Data
Melinda Culea ... Soren
Callan White ... Krite
Megan Cole ... Noor
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Storyline

The Enterprise obliges the androgynous J'naii race's request to investigate a mysterious shuttle disappearance. When a probe follows an inexplicable neutrino emission, it too suddenly vanishes without a trace, possibly the first-ever documented 'null-space', which absorbs all electromagnetic forces around it. Riker will attempt to chart it in a shuttle with the J'naii Soren. While contemplating the differences between social and biological life with or without gender-distinctions they become close. Entering the null-space, they find the shuttle and beam back with its crew of two to the J'naii's green planet, where they fall in love. Soren is arrested for loving sexually and sentenced to psychotectic therapy. Written by KGF Vissers

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Certificate:

TV-PG | See all certifications »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Melinda Culea is the third The A-Team (1983) regular or semi-regular to guest star on TNG. The first two were Lance LeGault who played Captain K'Temoc in Star Trek: The Next Generation: The Emissary (1989) and Dwight Schultz who played Lieutenant Barclay in Star Trek: The Next Generation: Hollow Pursuits (1990) and several reappearances. See more »

Goofs

When Riker and Soren are going over the shuttle's controls, Soren has trouble finding the "schematic reactor assembly." Even by Trek techno-babble standards, this is nonsense. A schematic is a diagram or illustration of a device. Soren should have said that she couldn't find the "schematic of the reactor assembly," or the "reactor assembly schematic." (And that's just what she gets when she finds it: an annotated diagram of the reactor assembly.) See more »

Quotes

Commander William T. Riker: Soren... I love you.
Soren: I'm sorry.
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Connections

Referenced in After Trek: Vaulting Ambition (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

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

 
Required viewing for those dealing with at risk LGBT youth
19 September 2017 | by bkoganbingSee all my reviews

One of the best TNG episodes ever done and it ought to be required viewing for young audiences and those who deal with at risk youth. Sad that the ones who need the lessons from this story will never see it.

The Enterprise is helping out a race that has developed into androgyny over time on a rescue mission. But in working with Melinda Culea she says that in their culture there are those who start showing specific gender traits. For them it can be a hard life and the planet culture says that conversion therapy back to androgyny is the law.

The prime directive places a burden on Jonathan Frakes who has reciprocated some romantic feelings that Culea has tossed in his direction. It's an internal cultural matter. It weighs heavy on Riker's soul.

With every country in the world now dealing with sexual orientation and gender identity and expression issues this episode is a great example of looking at the issue through the other end of Alice's looking glass. Don't miss this one.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 March 1992 (USA) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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