Series: The Next Generation
Air Date: November 20, 1989
Written by: Sam Rolfe
Directed by: Timothy Bond
The Enterprise hosts negotiations for the end of pirate raids by the Gatherers. Riker finds another woman to destroy.
The episode starts off with Worf, Riker, Crusher and Data wandering around a broken-down, decrepit area that appears to have been raided and pillaged. Worf notes that the reactor was missing, so clearly there were space pirates. Crusher finds a jagged metal edge with blood on it that wasn't human and then Data opens a jammed door to find some unconscious scientists behind it. So they take all this stuff back and Crusher discovers that the blood is Acamarian, which suggests the raiders were Gatherers, which are members of that race that split off after a war on that planet. Apparently they got tired of just taking small things from people's houses.
So the Enterprise heads over to Acamar where they meet with the Acamarian leader and she is the epitome of aristocracy. Not a pirate at all. She agrees to travel with the Enterprise to negotiate an end to raids with the Gatherers, but she insists on bringing along some servants. One of those servants is Yuta, and she is a cook. While Riker settles the leader and her servants into their quarters, he teaches Yuta
|Riker likes 'em subservient.|
That turned out not to be such a good idea, because while Picard, Gull and the Acamarian leader met alone, Yuta approached one of the Gatherers and merely touched him which caused him to go into cardiac arrest while she said "I am the last of my clan, but my clan will out-live yours." When he is finally found, Crusher confirms cardiac arrest, but is unsure how exactly it happened since he's otherwise quite healthy. She would later find out that there's a virus in his system that seems to specifically target his clan. So they see if any similar cases have happened in the past and, as it turns out, several of his clan had been assassinated the same way. And guess who was there 50 years ago the last time it happened.
|Yuta has aged quite gracefully... or not at all.|
As soon as Riker finds this out, he beams down and halts negotiations in their tracks just as Yuta is about to serve the Gatherer leader a drink. He reveals what he knows about her and points a phaser at her to dissuade her from moving any further. She reveals that 50 years ago she was one of five survivors of a massacre that this one clan perpetrated. She did die, but scientists brought her back to life with an altered cell structure that slowed her aging and allowed her to carry out her vendetta with just a touch. With tears in her eyes, she tries to move forward.
|That turns out to be a bad idea.|
This episode moves along quite well. I loved the intricacy and the character work done all around. It was pretty well written and well acted (save for an over-the-top Gull). BUT THEN RIKER DECIDED TO DISINTEGRATE YUTA. Dammit, man, there are so many more settings on that phaser! Just stun the poor woman so she's knocked unconscious! I understand that she's been genetically modified, but isn't there something between "pinch" and "disintegrate" that he could have used?! Anyway, aside from that one part, I thought this was a pretty great episode. Would watch again!