Tuesday, June 26, 2012


**** (4 stars out of 5)
Planet Kesprytt III wants something unusual: associate membership in the Federation. But only half of them want to join that happy space clubhouse. The Kes are unified, but the Prytt nation are total shut-ins. So far, no Federation member has joined without having a single planet-wide government, like the one Earth formed in 2150. Yay, Earth! (I've been a fan of them from the start.)

The Prytt wear the purple body-stocking of the comic book mystery man, The Phantom. (Probably so they don't get cooties, rather than for fighting crime.) They catch Jean-Luc and Beverly, then hook their brain stems to psi-wave implants intended to reveal their true intentions. As you do.

The first meal they are delivered as prisoners is Tricorder with a side of Escape Route, from a Kes inside man in 30 minutes or you're not free.

Kes Ambassador Mauric works with Riker to find them, but a few minutes in his company is all it takes to demonstrate his rampant paranoia. Mauric makes Richard Nixon look like Jeff Spicoli.

Bev and Jean-Luc brave the fire swamps and R.O.U.S.'s while discovering the implants are starting to broadcast their thoughts to each other. This is remarkable technology! Beyond even the Federation! Borg-level stuff, in fact. You'd think Picard would be more on edge about it.

To walk even a few meters away from each other is to crumple up and ralph, so they're stuck with the mind-reading. Bev learns Picard appears more confident than he is, and he learns she's jam-packed with snark. They both loathe elaborate breakfasts. They both love firelight. And as for Jack...

Well, Jean-Luc has been infatuated with Beverly for 20 years, but couldn't say anything without betraying Jack or, eventually, Jack's memory.

"Attached" sort of almost pulls the trigger on a romance they've toyed with for seven years. A possibility that somehow never becomes quite possible. I'm a big softhearted softie from Softburg, so I always wanted it to work out for those two.

Additional: a little tinkering would now supply the Federation with thought transmission technology! Rather useful stuff, right? Whatever happened to it? Filed it away under 'psycotricorder' in creepy Warehouse 47, I guess.

Additional additional: I'm glad my wife returns from vacation today. Luckily, if she moves more than a few meters away I don't curl up and barf. Much.

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