Series: The Next Generation
Air Date: February 6, 1989
Written by: Wanda M Haight, Gregory Amos and Burton Armus
Directed by: Rob Bowman
Riker serves as an exchange officer aboard a Klingon ship and doesn't fit in very well when he's told to destroy the Enterprise.
So the Enterprise has a crew transfer at Starbase 179 and on comes another Benzite. The first Benzite we met was when Wesley was taking his Starfleet entrance exam, and, in fact, Wesley believes this Benzite to be the same Benzite, but then he says he's not and it's all embarrassing and accidentally racist and stuff. Meanwhile, in the phaser range, Picard and Riker are testing out their skills and the idea of an officer transfer comes up. No human has ever served on board a Klingon vessel, but through the officer exchange program, it's possible. So Riker says he'll do it just 'cause no one has ever done it before. You go, Riker.
Before he goes, though, he talks to Worf, obviously. Worf gives him some advice about how Klingons operate, including how the first officer kills the captain when the captain has become weak so that he can take over as captain. I'm pretty sure Riker doesn't intend to kill the Klingon captain, though. He then goes to 10-Forward to try some Klingon delicacies like gagh, the most appropriately named food ever. Except, maybe an orange. After preparing himself for the transfer, Riker gets on the transporter while the Klingons say to themselves "guess who's coming to dinner."
|"This is a lovely dark room, but Starfleet has evolved beyond these to digital photography."|
As you can imagine, Riker's not to big on this idea, but he took an oath to do his duty on board the Klingon ship, and that duty is to follow the captain's orders. Back on the Enterprise, Worf notices the bacteria on the Enterprise and the Benzite dude says he noticed it earlier on the Klingon ship. Picard's all like "Why the heck didn't you tell us, Smurf?!" and the Bezite was all "It's not the Benzite way to report on things we don't know anything about!" and Picard's all like "Well, you're in Starfleet now, kid!" So they rush off to the Klingon ship to help out without knowing that the Klingon ship is on their way to attack the Enterprise.
|Albeit against Riker's wishes.|
With the captain gone, that puts Riker in command of the Klingon vessel, so he hails the Enterprise and tells them to surrender. When Picard sees that it's Riker, though, he knows he's in good hands. The Enterprise stands down and they live happily ever after and learn a valuable lesson about Klingons.
This is a good, simple episode that teaches us a little more about Klingons than we may have already known. We know Starfleet an Qo'nos are under a treaty, but we didn't really know what exactly that means when push comes to shove. Turns out Klingons are the warrior race we'd all known and loved.