Star Trek: The Next Generation (1988): S01E15 – 11001001


Introduction

“11001001” is the fifteenth episode of the first season of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation. It was first broadcast on 01 February 1988, in the United States in broadcast syndication.

It was written by Maurice Hurley and Robert Lewin, and directed by Paul Lynch.

Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures of the Starfleet crew of the Federation starship Enterprise-D. In this episode, members of an alien race called the Bynars hijack a nearly evacuated Enterprise while retrofitting the computer in space dock.

Make-up supervisor Michael Westmore created the look of the Bynars, who were four women in extensive make-up. The musical score was scored by Ron Jones. Reviewers praised the Bynars themselves, and the response to the episode was generally positive, with one critic calling it the best of the season. It was awarded an Emmy Award for Outstanding Sound Editing for a Series.

Outline

The Federation starship Enterprise arrives at Starbase 74 for a routine maintenance check. Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and Commander William Riker (Jonathan Frakes) greet Starbase Commander Quinteros (Gene Dynarski) and two pairs of small humanoid aliens known as Bynars; the Bynars heavily rely on their computer technology and work in pairs for best efficiency. Much of the crew take shore leave while Picard, Riker and a skeleton crew remain aboard. Riker is intrigued by the Bynars’ claimed upgrades to the holodeck and starts a program in a jazz bar. The program includes a woman named Minuet (Carolyn McCormick), by whom Riker is fascinated, both as a beautiful and charming woman, but also by the level of sophistication in her responses. Riker shortly returns, and Picard walks in on him kissing Minuet, and he too is amazed by the simulation.

Meanwhile, the Bynars discreetly create a catastrophic failure in the ship’s warp core. Lt. Cmdr. Data (Brent Spiner) and Geordi La Forge (LeVar Burton) are unable to locate Picard or Riker and, assuming them to already be on the Starbase, order an emergency evacuation. They set the ship to leave the Starbase and warp to a safe location before it would explode. However, once they are clear of the dock, the failure disappears and the ship sets course for the Bynar system, the planet Bynaus orbiting Beta Magellan. Data, La Forge, and Quinteros realise that the Bynars are still aboard the ship, but there are currently no other working vessels to follow them. Back on the Enterprise, Riker and Picard leave the simulation to find the ship empty and at warp to the Bynar system, with the ship’s controls locked to the bridge. Fearing that the Bynars have taken over the ship for nefarious purposes, they set the ship to self-destruct in 5 minutes and then take the bridge by inter-ship transporter beam and find the Bynars there unconscious.

After cancelling the self-destruct, they find the Bynars have uploaded massive amounts of information to the Enterprise computers, but they are unable to decode it. Realizing that Minuet was purposely created by the Bynars as a distraction, Picard and Riker ask the simulation about what is going on as the ship nears the orbit of Bynar. Minuet explains that a star near the Bynar homeworld had gone supernova, and the EMP it emitted would knock out their computer systems, effectively killing the Bynars. They had used the Enterprise to upload their computer information for safekeeping and then planned to download it back to the Bynar computers after the threat of the EMP had passed. With Data’s help, Picard and Riker successfully download the data, and the Bynars recover. They apologise for their actions, having feared that Starfleet would refuse to help, though Picard notes they only had to ask. As the Enterprise returns to Starbase, Riker returns to the holodeck to thank Minuet but finds that without the Bynar data, the simulation has regressed to the expected norm for the holodeck, and while Minuet still exists, she is not the same as before. Riker reports to Picard that Minuet is gone.

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Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Paul Lynch.
  • Writer(s): Maurice Hurley and Robert Lewin.
  • Release Date: 01 February 1988.
  • Running Time: 50 minutes.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

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