Star Trek 222: Power Play

222. Power Play

FORMULA: Return to Tomorrow + Whom Gods Destroy + The Schizoid Man x3

WHY WE LIKE IT: Evil Troi. The crew being smart.

WHY WE DON'T: Data's possessed again?!?

REVIEW: The only things keeping Power Play from being a true classic is 1) its lack of any defining character moments and 2) its bland title. Because in reality, this is a tight thriller à la Die Hard, with genuinely creepy performances and the Enterprise crew acting like the smart professionals they are. Too often, plots only work if characters conveniently forget their abilities, training or available tools. Not this time. It's lovely how the aliens use thei possessed crew members' knowledge to take the ship hostage, and how the rest work to stop them. Everybody's got contingency plans, it's beautiful to see. I especially love how smart Ro Laren is, justifying Picard's interest in her. Ro makes every episode she's in better.

The episode is largely about plot, so the twist at the end works, but that doesn't mean there are no acting moments to admire. Sure, an evil Data is old hat by now (Brent Spiner simply puts his voice in the Lore frequencies), but the cold Troi shows a Mirror universe version of her could be terrifying. And creepy O'Brien hovering over his wife and child, that's damn intense.

LESSON: If you give them a chance, Australians will take over your body.

REWATCHABILITY - High: Crew possession is an old standard, sure, but there's rarely been an episode where the entire crew has been this smart at dealing with a situation. Possibly under appreciated.

2 comments:

Blockade Boy said...

Creepy O'Brien was the best thing about this episode, for me. Runner-up: Troi talking in a stilted Patrick-Stewart-circa-"Dune" type of voice.

These recaps bring back a lot of memories. Admittedly most of them are bad, since the show was a mess. But still--!

Siskoid said...

The blogosphere has a dual purpose.

If it's good stuff, we can praise it.

If it's bad stuff, we can laugh at it.

Either way, we win.

 

Blog Archive

Category

5 Things to Like Activities Advice Alien Nation Aliens Say the Darndest Things Alpha Flight Amalgam Ambush Bug Animal Man anime Aquaman Archetypes Archie Heroes Arrowed Asterix Atom Avengers Awards Babylon 5 Batman Battle Shovel Battlestar Galactica Black Canary BnB 2-in1 Books Booster Gold Buffy Canada Captain America Captain Marvel Cat CCGs Charlton Circles of Hell Class Comics Comics Code Approved Conan Contest Cooking Crisis Daredevil Dating Kara Zor-El Dating Lois Lane Dating Lucy Lane Dating Princess Diana DCAU Deadman Dial H Dice Dinosaur Island Dinosaurs Director Profiles Doctor Who Doom Patrol Down the Rabbit Hole Dr. Strange Encyclopedia Fantastic Four Fashion Nightmares Fiasco Films Within Films Flash Flushpoint Foldees French Friday Night Fights Fun with Covers FW Team-Up Galleries Game design Gaming Geekly roundup Geeks Anonymous Geekwear Gimme That Star Trek Godzilla Golden Age Grant Morrison Great Match-Ups of Science Fiction Green Arrow Green Lantern Hawkman Hero Points Podcast Holidays House of Mystery Hulk Human Target Improv Inspiration Intersect Invasion Invasion Podcast Iron Man Jack Kirby Jimmy Olsen JLA JSA Judge Dredd K9 the Series Kirby Motivationals Krypto Kung Fu Learning to Fly Legion Letters pages Liveblog Lonely Hearts Podcast Lord of the Rings Machine Man Motivationals Man-Thing Marquee Masters of the Universe Memes Memorable Moments Metal Men Metamorpho Micronauts Millennium Mini-Comics Monday Morning Macking Movies Mr. Terrific Music Nelvana of the Northern Lights Nightmare Fuel Number Ones Obituaries oHOTmu OR NOT? Old52 One Panel Outsiders Panels from Sheena Paper Dolls Play Podcast Polls Questionable Fridays Radio Rants Reaganocomics Recollected Red Bee Red Tornado Reign Retro-Comics Reviews Rom RPGs Sandman Sapphire & Steel Sarah Jane Adventures Saturday Morning Cartoons SBG for Girls Seasons of DWAITAS Secret Origins Podcast Secret Wars SF Shut Up Star Boy Silver Age Siskoid as Editor Siskoid's Mailbox Space 1999 Spectre Spider-Man Spring Cleaning ST non-fiction ST novels: DS9 ST novels: S.C.E. ST novels: The Shat ST novels: TNG ST novels: TOS Star Trek Streaky Suicide Squad Supergirl Superman Supershill Swamp Thing Tales from Earth-Prime Team Horrible Teen Titans That Franchise I Never Talk About The Prisoner The Thing Then and Now Theory Thor Thursdays of Two Worlds Time Capsule Timeslip Tintin Torchwood Tourist Traps of the Forgotten Realms Toys Turnarounds TV V Waking Life Warehouse 13 Websites What If? Who's This? Whoniverse-B Wikileaked Wonder Woman X-Files X-Men Zero Hour Strikes Zine