Sunday, March 29, 2020

Star Trek: Picard -- Season 1 Episode 6 (The Impossible Box)

So, it’s time for Picard to finally meet Soji.  There’s just one problem standing in their way and it would seem to be a minor one.  Picard has to get permission to be on the Borg cube.  It technically belongs to the Romulans.  Fortunately, Raffi is still on the ship and she has a connection at Starfleet which gets them in.

The catch is that Picard has to go alone.  He’s not looking forward to it, as he was assimilated many years ago, but that’s the price of admission.  The Romulans are pretty strict about security, so they have him beam over to a remote location.  Maybe they’re paranoid about him being around sensitive information.  Maybe they just want to make him wait or feel isolated.  Either way, he has a panic attack before the director of the Reclamation Project shows up.

The director happens to be a former drone Picard helped many years ago: Hugh.  (Of course, we already knew this from previous episodes.)  Hugh is the first person in this new series who seems happy to see Picard.  He’s more than happy to help Picard find Soji.

Unfortunately, she’s not in her quarters nor is she showing up on scans.  Fortunately, she finds Picard.  Unfortunately, she doesn’t seem to have the same instinct to trust Picard.  (Soji takes a little convincing.)  Fortunately, Hugh has a way for Picard and Soji to escape.

It’s not clear why they couldn’t transport off the cube directly.  I assume that was the plan, as Picard didn’t know about the Sikarian Trajector technology.  It does allow for a nice reference to Star Trek: Voyager.  (I am kind of wondering how Sikarians reacted do being assimilated.  It’s a good thing Voyager didn’t stick around.)

However, it took Picard only half the season to meet up with Soji, who is only starting to come to terms with what she is.  Narek was right to hold off, though.  Trying to kill Soji did activate her, which probably wouldn’t have ended well if he was still trying to get information out of her.

The series seems to be moving along pretty well.  I’ve come to use 24 as the show by which I judge other serialized shows.  24 could be a little jerky in that every episode ended with an overly dramatic cliffhanger.  Star Trek: Picard doesn’t do that.  There is a sense of a chapter being completed, but it seems more natural.  By this episode, we’re getting a much smoother experience.

There are a few questions, such as why Elnor didn’t go with Picard.  Elnor is sworn to protect Picard.  Separating serves no obvious purpose.  It’s also not clear in this episode exactly where Picard is going or why, but at least that will be revealed in the next episode.


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