Star Trek 892: Q's Day

892. Q's Day

PUBLICATION: Star Trek: The Next Generation #4, DC Comics, May 1988

CREATORS: Michael Carlin (writer), Pablo Marcos (artist)

STARDATE: 42128.3 (follows the last issue)

PLOT: Q isn't responsible for the taking of the saucer section, and as if to prove it, he loses his powers. Elsewhere, the Q-Continuum is observing the crew of the saucer section for promising signs. One comes up in the form of Tasha Yar being stalked by the man who apparently raped her back in her colony. When she has a chance to kill him, she doesn't, and the Q decide to spare humanity (again). The powerless Q would rather die than live as a human, so he attempts to commit suicide with a phaser, but when his arm is deflected by Picard, it kills Geordi instead...

CONTINUITY: Q and the Continuum both feature. Chief engineer Argyle rates a mention. The Q confirm that humanity is on trial, and if they weren't convinced in Encounter at Farpoint, they are here. Picard refers to Hide and Q.

DIVERGENCES: Stardate continues to be wrong. Worf exclaims "Bull!". More strange uniforms. Q also lost his powers in Déjà Q, where this episode wasn't mentioned. "Picard never hit me!" He does here. This is the first and only time other members of the Q-Continuum have taken on Q's own appearance (John de Lancie). The emotional Data jumps on Q to strangle him in a fit of rage.

PANEL OF THE DAY - Ensign Mergon's mother always made him wear that hat.
REVIEW: This feels like one of those stories where something is affecting the crew and they're all at each others' throats, but nope. There's nothing of the sort. You have Picard and his cronies beating up a prisoner, unprofessional conduct on the bridge (those crazy Bickleys), Data with murderous intent, and general angry grimacing. Even Deanna snaps. And yet, that's supposed to be their normal characterization. Tasha, however, is all about forgiving her repeat rapist (very disturbing subject matter, by the way, especially in how they avoid saying the words, and for what it means to a character they do not own). The Q think this means humanity is heading in the right direction, so I guess they didn't see Geordi kick a man when he's down. Carlin's melodrama matches Marcos' contorted figures, with the Q waxing philosophical about "goodness and badness" among other tripe. I will give Carlin points for the notion that Q is only a "tainted segment" of the Continuum, which is a whole being. That's an interesting take on it.

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