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Because of a temporal disturbance, the Enterprise-C emerges 22 years into the future, thereby altering time. In this time, which only Guinan (played by Whoopi Goldberg) can detect the changes, the Federation is at war with the Klingons because the Enterprise-C missed a key battle which led to peace with them. So now, instead of Worf, now Tasha Yar (played by Denise Crosby) is back. A very sentimental and emotional episode, this is definitely one of the best if not the best of the TNG episodes.
This episode will also have wide repercussions - with the emergence of Sela, Tasha's daughter in the episode "Redepemption".
Trivia note: Worf is introduced to prune juice, a "warrior's drink". Also, Dr. Selar is mentioned and we see the Original Series movie style uniforms for the Enterprise-C crew.
Not so this episode, with its well-drawn characters and decisions that must be made despite the fact that there are no positive options. And while I didn't care for Tasha Yar originally, the author of this episode made perfect use of her so that I not only liked her but respected the character very much.
An excellent episode that goes beyond the usual formula TV boundaries.
This is classic TNG all the way; big ethical issues, well-drawn characters and powerful storytelling; even Shooter McGavin gets to play a pretty solid character. And for me, one of the series' greatest moments is Picard's utterance of this line:
"Let's make sure history never forgets... the name... Enterprise."
The writer's fascination with Wesley Crusher kept me from becoming a fan originally. How a snot nosed kid could continually save the day just meant sloppy writing for me. But I digress.
I finally decided to watch the whole TNG saga. I noticed at the beginning in Series 3 things were looking up. Tonight, I finally watched episode 15, Yesterday's Enterprise. I had heard nothing about it and my expectations were middling. Imagine my surprise when I was greeted with stunning speculative Science Fiction of the first rank, seriously challenging anything in the Original Series.
From a sweet script and chilling drama to great ensemble acting, I was blown away. A previous iteration of the Enterprise suddenly appears 22 years after it was supposedly destroyed and instantly changes the Star Trek universe. How and why it was changed and the manner in which this all unfolded left me breathless. Superior television and drama worthy of the name Science Fiction. I think I will rewatch this right now.
I now look forward to more TNG; better late than never.
Only the ancient and wise Whoopi Goldberg as Guinan knows there is something wrong. We know it too because former series regular Denise Crosby as Tasha Yar is on the bridge in her old job as security chief. And she gets a bit of romance from Christopher McDonald a junior officer on the previous Enterprise.
All the Star Trek franchise shows have a time paradox or three among their episodes, this is one of the best. McDonald and Crosby make a nice pair of ill fated lovers whose romance was never meant to be.
One of the better TNG episodes out there.
In this scenario, since both Enterprises' know that the future in which they came to meet was not supposed to take place, either one of them could have left a record of their existence in THAT reality. This would have come in especially handy since in future episodes Capt pichard is confronted by someone who is a direct result of that momentary confluence of the two time periods from this episode.
I assert that toolkien's argument holds no water. In fact, we *do* have canonical evidence that you *can't* just send a ship off into combat on autopilot. The *only* time that was ever successfully done was with the M-5 device, in TOS's "The Ultimate Computer", and we know that the M-5 experiment was ultimately a failure and no Federation ships since are equipped with one. Lacking one, it can't be done, and I shall prove it.
EXHIBIT A: I cite as evidence the third movie "The Search For Spock". In that movie, just to have the ship be controlled by a mere handful of people, Scotty has to create an automating device. This alone tells us you can't just go fly the ship somewhere on autopilot-- if you could, they wouldn't have needed Scotty's hack, they would have just set the Enterprise on autopilot and sat back and enjoyed the ride to Genesis. But what's more, Scotty's jury-rigging eventually *breaks down* when faced with the challenge of combat. This makes it extra-clear that combat is too hard to be auto-piloted.
EXHIBIT B: I cite the TOS episode "This Side Of Paradise". At one point in this episode, the entire crew has mutinied and abandoned the ship, choosing instead to beam down to a paradise-like planet. Kirk is left alone on the ship, everyone else is gone. And here is his *exact quote*, from his captain's log: "The ship... can be maintained in orbit for several months, but even with automatic controls, I cannot pilot her alone. In effect, I am marooned here." So where's your autopilot now?
In short, there is hard evidence that a starship cannot be auto-piloted, especially in combat, and I am aware of *no* evidence which suggests it can (again, except for the M-5). But even if we speculate that by Enterprise C's time, they had developed *some* ability to autopilot, there's every good reason to posit that it might not be very good, especially at combat. Keep in mind: the *whole point* is to convince the Klingons that the Federations acted honorably. If the ship went back with no crew, just on autopilot, it is reasonable to think that the Klingons would not have been impressed by the half-assed effort that the automation system might have been able to produce. Indeed, it might well have been Yar's tactical expertise *itself* which pushed them over the line enough to win the Klingons' respect. We don't really know for sure, but if the episode wants to lean in that direction, it's on sturdy enough ground that you can't label that a plot hole.
LOL...did you FORGET that the CREW was needed to actually fight the battle against the Romulans when it returned?
They needed Tasha for tactical, etc...
Sending the ship back on auto pilot would not have accomplished that...there was NO 'plot hole', sorry...
All in all, one of the best 'alternate future/time travel' episodes in any Star Trek series, remarkably well written, acted, directed...and Guinan's final lines were pitch perfect. I literally had tears in my eyes as I was smiling away at the conclusion to this one...bravo.
10 out of 10 from me.
The Enterprise inexplicably meets a previous version of the Enterprise in space. Somehow, the old version C was transported 22 years in the future. But this isn't the only change, as apparently this time shift also completely changed the timeline--resulting in Lt. Yar being alive and well on the Enterprise D as well as a long and super-bloody war between the Klingons. 40,000,000,000 lives have been lost in this horrific fight and it's lasted since about the time the Enterprise C disappeared. In fact, they eventually come to realize that if they can send that ship back, then the timeline will change and perhaps the war will never occur at all. Oddly, Guinan realizes that there is a problem and the old Enterprise must go back--but many of the other crew members want the ship to stay and help in the hopeless fight against the Klingons.
While the episode is a very interesting what if sort of show, it also re- introduces Yar. She's actually fine here--but her eventual return as a Romulan (?!) made no sense at all and seemed contrived as well as a low- point for the series. I just wish in hindsight that they'd given Ms. Crosby better material from the start, as this weird, abortive return just felt strange and a bit silly.