Star Trek 1054: Childish Things

1054. Childish Things

PUBLICATION: Star Trek: The Next Generation #45, DC Comics, April 1993

CREATORS: Michael Jan Friedman and Kevin Ryan (writers), Chuck Frazier and Pablo Marcos (artists)

STARDATE: Unknown (follows the last issue)

PLOT: The Chorrtan prince is blind and could die going through his people's ritual of manhood because of it, so the Federation has offered to fit him with a VISOR. The Enterprise brings the same team that gave Geordi his VISOR to the planet and soon enough, Geordi befriends the blind prince. But just as soon, there's an attempt on his life, and then on one of the doctors. One of the scientists is implicated and freely confesses. Seems the Chorrtans once raided an illegal eugenicist colony and he's the sole survivor. But he isn't. Just before the operation is about to occur, Geordi confronts another of the doctors who was planning to kill the boy with a scalpel swipe. She reveals she too was on that secret colony, and she and the other scientist were married there and had a daughter who died in the raid. But she can't go through with murdering a child, so Geordi convinces the prince to go ahead with the operation and it all works out for the best.

CONTINUITY: Eugenics research is banned in the Federation as per episodes going all the way back to Space Seed.

DIVERGENCES: Troi has a noticeable Betazoid accent, apparently, which doesn't explain why every other Betazoid we've seen doesn't. The comic places the Eugenics Wars in the early 21st-century instead of the 1990s.

PANEL OF THE DAY - Geordi couldn't let that ensign find his pathetic message on her answering machine.
REVIEW: A surprisingly effective story that could have been done on the show (they never did enough with Geordi, which is probably why he's my least favorite TNG character). Cramming a whodunit into a single issue does tend to make that issue rather wordy and expository, but the focus is more on the emotions than the plot details. Having Eugenicists in the picture explains why no one knows their story (there's been a cover-up) though also seems a bit throw-away, and I think the VISOR technology should have been updated over the last 20 years or so, but still a strong vehicle for Geordi.

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