**** (4 stars out of 5)
Geordi has a new Ensign Crusher! Which is to say, his cute new girl minion Tyler has a crush on him. La Forge quite wisely asks Data to not help him solve this little awkwardness.
Troi encourages our android pal not to be afraid of scary dreams, which often can contain important messages. Such as: when surly goons aren't cutting the cheese, they're cutting the cake.
Dirty dream scoundrels are cutting up a cake made from Counselor Troi, while Beverly drinks from bored Riker's head with a straw. Worf's enjoying some tasty Troi cheesecake, too. (Who wouldn't!) Next Data cuts the cake, despite Troi's screams of refusal.
Holodeck Freud seems to think there's something sexual about all this. And speaking of impotence, the new warp drive won't start up.
Data sees a hissing mouth open up in Geordi's neck. Straw Head Riker tells Data to answer the ringing telephone inside his own chest. It's Freud on the line urging the mechanical man to 'kill, kill, kill, thrill, thrill, thrill.' And this time Data dreamed it while he was awake. They're lucky Freddy Krueger didn't get them.
Troi has Data temporarily shut his dream program down and take counselling. She's not very worried.
But she should have been! Data goes full Norman Bates' Mum: trying to cut the mouth out of Troi's shoulder and straw out of Riker's head. Worf takes Data's phaser away, and custody of his cat. (Have you ever noticed it's always the quiet loners with the kitten you have to watch out for? Soft kitty, warm kitty, stabby ball of fur...)
Unable to heal Troi completely, Bev discovers invisible leeches are devouring everyone. Data was unconsciously perceiving this. The crew pipe Data's dreams into the holodeck (because that's always super safe) and Picard and La Forge observe the dream for themselves. Suck on that, 'Inception'!
Data's high frequency shrieks drive out these beasties from Thanatos VII. Very disturbing. I mean, who'd name a planet THANATOS?
"Phantasms" da bomb, yo! It's a potent blend of horror and absurdity.