Star Trek Next 53: Bonding [Import]
From the Back Cover
An Away Team's search of a barren planet turns tragic when a buried bomb explodes and kills one of the group's archaeologists. Worf (Michael Dorn), the team leader, feels he is to blame for the death.
On board the Enterprise, Picard (Patrick Stewart) breaks the news to the victim's 12-year old son, Jeremy (Gabriel Damon). As Worf, himself an orphan, lends comfort to Jeremy, Troi (Marina Sirtis) detects an alien presence aboard the ship-Jeremy's mother, seemingly come back to life!
Picard determines that the image of Jeremy's mother is being created by an energy source from the planet's surface, and that the alien power is gaining control of the transporter room. Can Picard protect Jeremy and save The Enterprise?
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"The Bonding" is one of those Next Generation episodes that remembers to deal with the consequences of having families on the new and improved Enterprise. For Worf there is not only the sense of obligation since he was the leader of the away team on the mission where Marla Aster was killed, but there is also his identification with the Jeremy as an orphan. Ironically, the energy beings from the planet parallel both of these feelings as well. Ultimately, the nice touch about this episode is that the energy beings are as benevolent towards the fragile physical beings as Picard and his crew routinely are towards the various suffering creatures they encounter while cruising around the Star Trek universe. Next to Picard, Worf was always the Next Generation character who was least comfortable with small children. "The Bonding" prepares the way for the introduction of Alexander into Worf's life in a few seasons, and continues the exploration of his Klingon heritage, which becomes more and more pronounced with each season as well.
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