[ <-- | CREDITS | PROMO | PRESS | QUOTES | REVIEWS | SNAFUS | --> ]
Rating: ** 1/2
Edited Length: 45:29
U.S. Airdate: May 20, 1990
Nielsen Rating/Rank: [10.3/3]
Nehemiah Persoff: [Palor] "Toff"
Jane Daly: [Varria]
Colm Meaney: [O'Brien]
Special Appearance By
Saul Rubinek: [Kivas Fajo]
Line Producer: David Livingston
Co-Producers: Hans Beimler & Richard Manning
Producer: Ira Steven Behr
Co-Executive Producer: Michael Piller
Executive Producer: Rick Berman
Written By: Shari Goodhartz
Directed By: Timothy Bond
Executive Producer: Gene Roddenberry
Co-Producer: Peter Lauritson
Executive Script Consultant: Melinda M. Snodgrass
Story Editor: Ronald D. Moore
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To neutralize a contaminated water supply in a nearby system, the Enterprise is taking on board the highly volatile hytritium, sold to them by the trader Kivas Fajo. Data flies the shuttle to make the back-and-forth trips, but is seized by Fajo on the last trip, who then sends his shuttle back empty and blows it up, to make it look as though Data's been destroyed. Seeing no evidence to the contrary, the Enterprise is forced to leave for the Beta Agni system (fortunately, they now have just enough hytritium to complete their mission).
When Data awakes, he is told that he is the "crown jewel" in Fajo's collection of rare and unique things. He cannot open the door, and cannot touch Fajo, who is wearing a proximity- activated forcefield which impedes positronic flow. Fajo tells him he'd better get used to his new life, and frequently suggests to him that he just "sit in the chair" and behave. Meanwhile, Geordi agonizes over Data's seeming death, and tells Picard and Riker he can find no reason for the explosion...except pilot error, which is virtually impossible for Data.
While Data tries to suborn Fajo's assistant Varria (who tells Data of Fajo's lavishness, both in rewards and in punishments), Picard chooses Worf as the new Ops officer. Fajo then tries many ways to get Data to sit in his chair and be a good little toy, including dissolving his uniform (to make him wear the clothes Fajo wants), and claiming to be Data's liberator- here, he says, Data cannot be called upon to violate his "fundamental respect" for life by killing. Data, however, eventually pretends to be naught more than a mannequin, embarrassing Fajo in front of his friend and rival. Meanwhile, while Troi tries to help Worf get used to replacing another dead crewmate, Geordi realizes Data didn't entirely follow protocol on the last trip (suggesting that there may have been something wrong with him), and when they reach the Beta Agni system, they find evidence that the contaminant may have been deliberately planted. Upon further inspection, they realize that the whole thing may have been an elaborate game to obtain Data, and head for the site of the shuttle explosion.
Meanwhile, Varria, whom Fajo earlier threatened with a particularly nasty disruptor to get Data to sit in his chair, tells Data she'll help him escape if he'll take her along. While the Enterprise slowly tracks Fajo down, Varria starts the escape pod's launch sequence, only to be overpowered by security. After Data removes the security, Fajo comes in and shoots Varria with one of the disruptors, then claims the blood is on Data's hands. Data picks up the other disruptor, and despite Fajo's confidence that Data cannot shoot, being "only an android" pulls the trigger- only to have the Enterprise beam him aboard just as he fired. Fajo is taken into custody and his collection confiscated, but when he asks Data if that gives him pleasure, Data replies, "No, sir- it does not. I do not feel pleasure. I am only an android."
Technical design, graphic design, interactive features, HTML & CGI programming by Andrew Tong. || All materials Copyright © 1987-1995 by their respective authors. || Document created: January 28, 1995 || Last Modified: July 12, 1999