(Unofficially) Peter S. Beagle


Sarek (Star Trek - The Next Generation Episode #71)
Television Story and Teleplay by Peter S. Beagle
Original U.S. Airdate: May 27, 1990
Stardate: 43917.4

Widely regarded as one of the better Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes, "Sarek" was adapted by Peter S. Beagle from an unpublished story by Marc Cushman and Jake Jacobs.

(Synopsis from The Star Trek Continuum)

Sarek, the renowned Vulcan Ambassador, is on a mission to establish relations between the Federation and a race of beings known as the Legaran. His arrival on the starship is preceded by his human Chief of Staff, Mendrossen, and a young Vulcan, Sakkath, the Ambassador's personal assistant. Mendrossen explains to Captain Picard that Sarek's age has recently caused him to tire easily, and asks him to dispense with the official ceremonies that would normally be accorded a visitor of Sarek's rank, so that he may rest. Picard is disappointed that Sarek will not be able to attend a concert arranged on his behalf, but defers to Mendrossen's wishes.

Picard later extends a personal invitation to attend the concert to Sarek's wife, Perrin, who thanks him and says that she will extend the invitation to her husband. When Picard departs, Perrin enters Sarek's room to find the Vulcan uncharacteristically annoyed by an apparent inability to meditate. Later in the evening, Sarek and his entourage attend the concert, where Picard is surprised to see the Ambassador, who is normally emotionally detached, moved to tears by the music.

During the course of Sarek's stay, sporadic bouts of anger and violence plague the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise. Dr. Crusher is horrified when she is driven to strike Wesley, and seeks counsel from Troi, who expresses concern because it is just one of many similar incidents that have been reported to her. The situation becomes desperate when a brawl breaks out among the crew in Ten Forward.

Troi and Dr. Crusher theorize that Sarek is suffering from Bendii syndrome, a rare condition among Vulcans, characterized by a loss of emotional control. Although Mendrossen denies the suggestion, Sakkath, concerned about the success of the conference, admits that he has been attempting to telepathically reinforce Sarek's emotional control.

When Sarek is informed of the recent events, he so vehemently denies his affliction that it results in an outburst of anger, which proves Picard's point. Before the captain cancels the conference, he proposes that he and Sarek participate in a mind-meld in which they would become telepathically linked, and virtually share one mind. When Sarek agrees, Picard suffers through a whirlwind of the Ambassador's emotions unleashed in his mind, while Sarek is able to use the captain's strength to successfully negotiate with the Legaran delegates.

The music recital in this episode contains several errors. First, the quartet seating is towards the audience, not toward each other. Classical music was originally developed with the performers facing each other in order to get visual cues. Performing in front of the audience did not come about until much later. Second, the Allegro is by Brahm's, not Mozart - "String Quartet No. 19 in C Major," also known as "The Dissonant" (K. No.465). Third, the Allegro is a sextet, not a quartet. Also, in this story, Geordi and Wesley are setting up this pool, and Wesley says that the temperature is 150 degrees celsius, which is 302 degrees Farenheit. However, there was no obvious radiant heat because Geordi and Wesley stand close to the pool and peer inside.
from Andrew Tong's ST:TNG website

You can view video clips, as well as the 30-second television episode preview at the Star Trek Continuum website.


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