Saturday, April 18, 2020

Star Trek: The Next Generation, S1, E2: "The Naked Now"

I spoke (or wrote) too soon when I suggested the titles of ST:TNG episodes were the names of sex tapes. I think they're more like the names of pulp erotica books, the kind with covers depicting women in torn dresses or standing outside doorways with one hand suggestively headed toward their lady parts. Which isn't surprising because Star Trek: The Next Generation might owe more to pulp erotica than to the original Star Trek. At first I thought it was hilarious that Netflix's description of the mature content was "sex, fear." But now I think whoever does the ratings for Netflix might be a pop culture genius.

Note: "pop culture genius" is the dumbest of all the geniuses.

"The Naked Now" tells the story of a non-story where something happens to the crew and then they get out of it in a really unexciting and mundane way. Get used to this formula! Maybe the point of Star Trek: The Next Generation was to show how life isn't about exciting trials and travails where we come up with a spectacular plan to get us over every hurdle but more of a slog where we simply muddle through by optimism and persistence. See, what happens is the crew is infected with some kind of virus which isn't really a virus. It's really just a rearranging of water molecules in their heads due to their proximity to a high gravitational field. These molecules rearrange to form grain alcohol so everybody gets spectacularly drunk. Although the "rearranging of water molecules" (which I'll henceforth call a virus because it fucking acts like a virus) acts like a virus (as I noted in my poorly timed parenthetical reference), hopping from person to person due to close contact with infected crew members. Early on in the episode, we learn that this same thing happened to the original crew of The Enterprise, so they have a vaccine on hand. But guess what? The vaccine doesn't work! The virus has mutated which means somebody's going to have to come up with a new plan to battle the virus!

Don't worry. The new plan isn't innovative or mind blowing. Remember, I said the problem gets resolved in a mundane way: Dr. Crusher merely keeps working on updating the vaccine until she succeeds. That's it! The moral of the story is to keep working on the solution because eventually you'll probably figure out the answer, even if you're drunk and super horny for the captain of your ship.

The virus itself isn't deadly. What's deadly is the actions of the crew once they're fucked up on tons of delicious virus. The Starfleet ship which infected them ended up with everybody on board dead (and some of them off board because they launched themselves out of the airlock). They all froze to death while fucking each other. If you're into naked people covered in a thick layer of permafrost, this episode has tons of material for you to jerk off to. And while the crew of the Enterprise all feel way too warm due to the virus, nobody turns the thermostat down to "Freeze to Death" (which is a weird setting but I guess, in space, it's an option?). But they do all engage in stupid behavior that threatens to destroy the ship because it can't move out of the way of the exploding star nearby.

In this episode, we learn that Data has a dick and is a master of using it. Tasha Yar takes it for a ride because she's all, "I want to fuck everybody on board! And you'd better not judge me because remember all of my stories about evading Rape Gangs? I earned all of this consensual dick, asshole!" Tasha Yar has severe trust issues (because of the Rape Gangs!) and the inorganic Data dick is the least threatening dick on board the Enterprise (other than Picard's dick. I mean, no way is Jean-Luc Picard's dick threatening. I bet it might even be a bit boring. It probably spits out quotes ofOthello when he cums).

Being fucked by Data, that clammy looking pale pink eye infected motherfucker, is the definition of "sex, fear."

We're introduced to Sarah MacDougal, possibly the Chief Engineer? She's definitely somebody in charge of engineering and also Scottish, so it makes sense. Later she'll be replaced by some guy named Argyle which is just the writers having a fucking laugh, right? We also meet Jim Shimoda who is the weirdest drunk I've ever seen. Some people get angry when they drink and some people get affectionate but Shimoda begins acting like he's five years old. So the majority of the crew want to just fuck each other, Wesley decides to become captain of the ship, and Jim Shimoda shits his pants and plays building blocks with the ship's power circuits. It's fucking embarrassing! I'd rather get caught fucking the robot.

So the virus becomes incidental to the real story (the virus, after all, is easily cured; it just takes a bit of time to work on that cure): the ship will be destroyed if the drunk crew can't figure out how to re-enable thrusters thanks to Baby Shimoda. Somehow Wesley Crusher becomes the hero by suggesting reversing the tractor beam so that the Enterprise can push itself off of the ship they're towing, getting a crucial bit of time to avoid debris while Data fixes the thrusters. The Entrprise pushes off the Starfleet vessel they were towing, sending it crashing into a piece of debris and exploding. I hope Wesley has to inform the family members of everybody on board why none of them were able to bury their loved ones.

An aside: don't fucking get on my case because I don't care about accuracy in my reviews, you nerds! I understand that Starship vessels probably don't have a "Freeze to Death" option on the air conditioning and most of the people freezing on board was due to the hatch that was blown on the ship's bridge. But if we're going to discuss this sci-fi shit in "realistic" terms, what the fuck was that hatch doing on the bridge and why was it so easy to blow?!

In the end, everybody was saved from Wesley Crusher's folly by Wesley Crusher's solution which means Wesley Crusher was the hero? I don't like the precedent this could set! Imagine how many Starfleet officers will begin sabotaging their own ships to look like heroes! I bet they call it Richard Jewel Syndrome even if Richard Jewel didn't do that. Everybody probably still thinks he planted the bomb at the Olympics even though he didn't. It's like how I'm absolutely positive that Chris Huff didn't jerk off into a bread box in junior high but since everybody said he did at the time, I'll always have the thought in my head, "Chris Huff jerks off into bread boxes."

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