Overall Ep :
First Aired :
23 Jan 2020
Season Ep :
Picard describes Data's death as happening more than 20 years ago, yet this episode is set in 2399, exactly 20 years after Nemesis.
He also describes the painting as being produced over 30 years ago, infact Data's first attempt at painting was in Birthright, Part 1, in 2369, once again exactly 30 years ago.
According to this episode there is a ban on synthetic lifeforms, however, we have a holographic character called Index. Clearly all synthetic lifeforms are not banned, just androids.
Great Moment :
Seeing Picard and Data together again on the Enterprise-D.
Body Count :
Dahj's boyfriend and at least 5, perhaps 6, Romulan assassins. The episode also recalls the events of the Mars uprising by rogue synthetics where 92,143 lives were lost.
Inside Picard's vault we find a large array of items from past episodes including a model of the USS Stargazer, a Bat’leth, a D'k'tahg, the book from the Enterprise-D ready room, the Captain Picard Day poster and a model of the Captain's Yacht from the Enterprise-E.
The version of Blue Skies playing in the 10-Forward during the first scene is by Bing Crosby, the grandfather of Denise Crosby, who played Tasha Yar in TNG.
This episode is a nominee for the DITL "Worst of Trek
The series opens with shots of space, featuring stunning nebulae, eventually leading to an exterior shot of the Enterprise-D, zooming in we find 10-Forward. Moving inside we find an older Picard is playing poker with Data, who appears to be winning. Data accuses Picard of delaying the game, to which Picard agrees saying that he doesn’t want it to end. Suddenly the Enterprise is in orbit over the Utopia Planitia shipyards on Mars. A distant explosion is heard and multiple explosions are seen on the surface of the planet. Shockwaves rise and the windows of 10-Forward are blown in. Picard awakes revealing the prior events to be a dream, he is approached by a bull dog, which he calls "Number One". We soon discover that Picard is on earth on his family vineyard.
Cut to a scene in the "Greater Boston Area" where we find a young couple spending a romantic evening alone. One is a male Xahean who are famous for their instincts. The other named Dahj, who appears to be human, announces that she has been admitted to the Daystrom Institute as a fellow in "Artificial Intelligence and Quantum Consciousness". The mood is ruined when three masked intruders beam into the room killing the male and assaulting the female pinning her down attaching devices to her temples. They want to know where she is from and "where the rest of you are". They decide to knock her out placing a bag over her head. She suddenly switches from being frightened and crying and starts fighting back in a very effective way. One of the attackers is heard to say "she’s activating". In very short order she fights off all three killing them with one of their own weapons, all while wearing the bag on her head. Dahj has a sudden vision of Picard and the scene ends.
Back at Chateau Picard we find Jean-Luc along with two Romulan assistants Laris and Zhaban. It is the anniversary of the Romulan supernova and Picard is to be interviewed to discuss his role in the events. We discover that he is now Admiral Jean-Luc Picard and as he points out retired. We discover that it was Picard who called for a massive relocation of the Romulans, which the Federation initially supported. Picard was to lead the rescue armada, a fleet of 10,000 warp capable vessels to be used to relocate 900 million Romulan citizens. The plan we find was thwarted when a group of rogue synthetics disabled the Mars defence grid and attacked Mars, wiping out the Utopia Planitia shipyard and destroying the rescue fleet. Mars is still burning to this day. 92,143 lives were lost in the event. This lead to a ban on synthetic lifeforms in the Federation. Starfleet abandoned its plan to rescue the Romulans and that resulted in Picard’s resignation.
Dahj, having seen Picard on his interview tracks him down to the Chateau. She recounts the actions in Boston and claims she feels a deep connection with Picard, although she doesn’t know how. That night Picard has another dream featuring Data, this time working on an unfinished painting in the vineyard. Waking we find that Dahj has fled. Picard discovers the unfinished painting hanging on his living room wall. Picard visits the "Quantum Archive" at the Starfleet museum, where items are kept in stasis. At the archive a holographic assistant called Index confirms that only Picard has access to his vault. Picard uses a console to retrieve an item which, when unpacked, reveals a completed version of the painting from the chateau, this version has a face on the cloaked figure. It is that of Dahj. Calling for the Index to identify the painting it is catalogued as item 227.67 from the archives of Jean-Luc Picard, an oil on canvas painted by Commander Data circa 2369, one of a set of two, the painting has a title "Daughter".
Dahj is in Paris and has a phone call with her mother, who urges her to go back to Picard. She tracks him down to Starfleet museum and beams there to meet him. During discussions we find that Data’s death in Nemesis was over two decades ago. Picard reveals that the painting is 30 years old and explains to Dahj that he believes her to be Data’s daughter. He asks her to accompany him to the Daystrom Institute in Okinawa. Before he can convince her to go they are attacked by people resembling the masked assassins that killed her boyfriend in Boston. Dahj reacts and fights off the numerous attackers performing ever more impressive feats as the battle ensues, culminating in a leap of over 30 metres. We discover that the assassins are Romulans. Dahj manages to kill all the assassins, however, the final one spits a green acid over Dahj and the rifle she’s holding. It starts to destroy Dahj and the weapon, causing the gun to explode killing Dahj in the resultant fireball and knocking Picard flying.
Picard comes around back in the Chateau with Laris and Zhaban. He is despondent at Dahj’s death. Zhaban tells him that the police didn’t report anything of Dahj being there and that security cameras showed nothing of the assassins or indeed Dahj.
Picard visits the Daystrom Institute and meets with Dr Agnes Jurati an expert in androids. She confirms that the synthetics that caused the Mars attack came from the Institute. The division had subsequently been shut down and she confesses that even without the ban on synthetics they hadn’t ever been able to reproduce the science that created Data. She has B4’s body and says that although Data attempted to transfer his consciousness to B4, before his death, he failed and that much of the information was lost. Picard shows her Dahj’s necklace which she describes as the symbol of fractal neuronic cloning, a radical idea from Bruce Maddox her boss, previously seen in TNG episode "The Measure of a Man". The theory was that the Data’s entire code, even his memories, could be reconstituted from a single positronic neuron. Agnes reveals that the "clones" would be produced in pairs, which gives Picard hope that there is another daughter of Data out there.
The final scene is set at what is described as the Romulan Reclamation Site. Here we find a Dr Soji Asha, Dahj’s twin, who also has a necklace like Dahj. She talks with Narek, a Romulan, who has recently started working at the facility. The camera pulls back, further and further until it eventually reveals a partially deconstructed Borg Cube, known as The Artifact.
On the whole this episode has both good and bad points. On the positive side it is great to see Picard back on a Star Trek show. To see Data again after his poignant death on Nemesis and that his sacrifice has had a lasting effect on Picard is all good stuff and in line with Picard’s character. It’s also good to see that he finally got the admiralship that he long deserved. If Picard was to retire then it makes sense that he would do so to his family home.
On the down side, we have a Federation that abandoned its task of rescuing the Romulans. It’s not like the Federation to drop a humanitarian mission, especially in light of the success and long lasting benefits of helping the Klingons, when the destruction of Praxis made their home world uninhabitable.
Next we have a ban on synthetic lifeforms, introduced as a result of the rebellion on Mars. At first this seems reasonable, more than 92,000 people died as a direct result of the rebellion, however, nobody seems to have even tried to investigate why these events occurred. Perhaps we will find out later in the series.
A very major problem on this episode is the glacial pacing. Long lingering scenes full of talking and very little actually happening. OK, we have a fight scene in Dahj’s flat and a further one outside of Starfleet museum. Only a couple of minutes in a 45 minute program. We finally get to see the Daystrom Institute, I just didn't know we were in Japan!