Star Trek: The Next Generation

“The Naked Now”

2.5 stars.

Air date: 10/5/1987
Teleplay by J. Michael Bingham
Story by John D.F. Black and J. Michael Bingham
Directed by Paul Lynch

Review Text

A deadly incident on a research vessel prompts the Enterprise to investigate why the crew went crazy and ended up accidentally killing themselves. The away team brings back a virus from the research ship which has the effect of severe alcoholic intoxication. Dr. Crusher must race to find a cure before the Enterprise becomes a victim of a similar disastrous event caused by drunken behavior.

The plot, let's face it, is a transparent excuse for the crew to act weird and play out the series' various would-be sexual-tension entanglements in comic form. Why doesn't Beverly detect the disease and quarantine Geordi from the outset? Because "our instruments don't show it!" that's why. How conveeeeenient.

It's probably a bad sign when you're cribbing from original series storylines by Episode 2 (see TOS's "The Naked Time"). Also probably a bad sign that you're playing the sexual tension games so early, before we've had time to learn who these characters are. Picard/Crusher, Riker/Troi, Data/Yar — that's two-thirds of the regular cast tied up in these games already, in Episode 2. The Data/Yar coupling I suppose is interesting, solely for the informative value: Data can get drunk and have sex.

And yet, there's a certain memorable quality to this episode, despite its campy, overplayed comedy. A fragment of a collapsed star is careening toward the ship, which can't move because some fool has pulled out all of the control chips from a console. Data must race to put them back in. Wesley, the boy wonder, has the dubious distinction of taking control of the ship and putting it in danger before then saving it, while everyone else looks on helplessly. No wonder the character is so loathed. Ron Jones scores the show as if it were an episode of TOS.

Ultimately, the show is too goofy for its own good, but it's at least not boring.

Previous episode: Encounter at Farpoint
Next episode: Code of Honor

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85 comments on this post

    How funny is The Naked Now? This is not just bad Trek but seriously bad television. I was trying to decide which scene was funnier...
    " me to not give into these wild feelings!"
    "But Geordi my job is security! No, you're right...helping people is better!"


    "The virus leaves you with a severe lack of judgement...and I find you very, very attractive!" (Crusher to Picard)

    Just pure cheese

    The Naked Now contains a glaring wording error in a specific line of dialogue. It happens when Picard and Data uncover the information about the same virus that infected Kirk's crew in the 1960's.

    PICARD: Data, DOWNLOAD this information to medic immediately.

    This line makes no sense. Data is working on a bridge acces panel. He should be UPLOADING data to sickbay, not the other way around.

    It's not surprising that Trek's writers were still clueless how to even write regular computer terminology, let alone the more complicated technobabble.

    Yes, some of the early TNG episodes were just ripoffs of TOS stories, but I'm actually kinder to "The Naked Now" than some others because it actually ACKNOWLEDGES that it's a replay of "The Naked Time." Like Jammer said, it's never boring & the Data/Yar sex scene has become classic.
    Voyager never did this with its many ripoffs, of course I guess it would've been silly to have references to past Trek series in almost every episode.

    Ugh...THIS is the second ep?! Not a good sign if the second ep is such a blatant ripoff of TOS. True, they acknowledged it, but still, a bad sign.

    Starting off pretty good, the ep derails around the first/second act when the crew starts to go bonkers. The Data/Yar sex scene was utterly pointless and stupid, I'm sorry. Low point of the ep.

    Not that the rest of the ep fared much better. The acting from most of the cast was really subpar this time around. Especially when Riker near the end says "I can't take it anymore" when his control starts to break--completely unconvincing. And don't forget Wesley saving the ship at the end singlehandedly--no wonder why they keep replacing chief engineers each week, a drunk teenager can do stuff better than they can!

    I guess it's a good thing that the ep never becomes boring, and it is structured quite effectively, but the execution leaves much to be desired. The point when Crusher cures the disease comes off as anticlimactic. I wished they'd spent just a few more minutes showing her working frantically in the lab while resisting the disease. That would have improved the ep quite a bit, IMHO.

    I'm going to go ahead and call this a fail. 1.5 out of 4.

    I'm with NCC-1701-Z.

    This one is a fail.

    What annoys me the most is the fact that's just the second episode proper, and they were already making fun of the series?? (and while they were at it, ripping off the original series)

    It was too soon to jump in the comedy bandwagon. The same episode, played much later, would have been better (Maybe after "The Battle" or some other pseudo serious ep of Season 1).

    As one of the very first eps of TNG ever, it's an epic fail.

    I can recall, at the tender age of 15, having just begun watching TNG in earnest whilst being replayed on British terrestrial TV (First episode 'Future Imperfect') eagerly heading out to the now collapsed 'Our Price' chain and picking up the First four VHS tapes of TNg. Having watched 'Encounter' and been somewhat unimpressed by its relatively cerebral nature versus the Iriginal Trek, 'The Naked Nw' was something new for me. At the time, I would have given this about 3 stars, but with the benefit ofv20 years hindsight, how does it compare now?

    I'd ave to say, the review here is on the money. The episode is of course, a blatant rip off of 'The Naked Time' but it does at least acknowledge that fact! Thus is one of the more tolerable Wesley episodes, although the assistant Chief engineer and the first Chief engineer are very badly played. The dialogue is also, at times, excruciating. However, thus us Frakes' best episode for some time (probably until 'Hide and Q', and as a while the episode is at least mildly entertaining -that said, in the current era many have pointed out, TNG would've been pulled after Season 1with current TV execs pullin the strings. Who's to say, based on this and subsequent offerings, it'd have even made it to episode 25?

    A 2 star episode once again. Reasonable but too many flaws to overlook.

    This episode is stupid, but it's got some amusing moments. The only part that annoys me is Picards moralizing at the end. "I think we shall end up a fine crew...if we avoid temptation." What's that supposed to mean? It's not like the crew had any control over what they were doing!

    Yes, this is a bad episode. But decrying the fact that it's a TOS ripoff/homage is kind of dumb. The creators were clearly TRYING to get TOS fans on board by doing this. I bet the original promos mentioned something about TOS.

    Now, beyond that, a lot of what's done in the episode is stupid. Data getting drunk is clearly just ridiculous. It would have made more sense to have Data man ops for the length of the episode and not involved Worf at all (at this point in the series, it wasn't odd to not have one of the secondary characters appear in an episode).

    Still, I'll take this over "Code of Honor" or "Haven" any day of the week. It's campy and dumb, but at least it's somewhat entertaining.

    "The Naked Time" put thought into the characters and what happens if their ability to control themselves is put aside.

    "Naked Now" turns everything into a brainless foreplayfest, and given how early in TNG's run this was, they really missed out on an opportunity to hit a home run...

    1 star, mostly because of LeVar Burton's performance as the compromised Geordi is the closest thing this episode got to making use of how people feel and act without the social protocols and graces. It's the one thing the story got right. Riker getting Data down to Engineering would be the other moment... Jonathan Frakes plays it all straight, thankfully!

    I forgot to add; the contrivances to make Data succumb to the virus were just pathetic...

    And Yar seeking affection from an android? Indeed, what did Dr Soong intend when deciding to make Data anatomically correct and "fully functional"? He's not a mobile fire hydrant meant to extinguish burning buildings...

    I love this episode. 3.5 stars. I have the same opinion of this I do "genesis" from season 7. Just FUN. Stupid, campy, implausible, but ridiculous fun. I really do wish there were more fun episodes like this over the next 7 years.

    I love that there was a "core?" flying at the enterprise, and a drunk data had to put the chips in something to save the day! Who cares that it is stupid.

    And Jammer, Jones didn't score this like it was TOS, he scores like it is Star Wars!

    I say this all the time, but I would take this innocent, bombastic fun style of season 1 episodes any day over the monotonous, boring, endless, tiring, methodical style of season 7 any day of the week.

    The best thing about this episode: Benjamin Lum as Shimoda playing with the control chips as if he were a toddler with toys.

    The worst thing: nearly everything else.

    It was important to character exposition but served little actual value otherwise.

    The less said about this episode, the better.

    I think Wil Wheaton made a good point when he talked about "The Naked Now." We barely knew these people at this point, so were we really supposed to truly *know* that this was out of character behavior for them, or were we just told that it was so and just shrugged and went with it?

    I liked some of the scenes in this episode, but also thought a lot of the acting was still weak.

    I also don't like the fact that in order for the events of the episode to even occur, the crew has to act incompetent rather than than professionals. Their scans showed no life signs. Likely causes are 1) aliens boarded and killed crew 2) contagion 3) severe mechanical failure aboard the science vessel. The crew detected no signs of an alien, therefore 2 or 3 were pretty likely. So as such, the crew should have boarded in environmental suits. In the TOS episode, Spock and a red shirt DID wear an environmental suit, and for the Enterprise crew to not take such a simple precaution makes them look like amateurs. Two star episode, at best.

    I think 2.5 stars is somewhat generous, but it's nice to see someone who doesn't dismiss the episode entirely. There are some good things here -- I actually enjoy some of the flirty dialogue between Picard and Crusher, which might put me in a minority. Well, not the "I have gone so long without a husband!" line, but the "Beverly."/"Jean-Luc."/"You will address me as Captain!"/"You will address me as Chief Medical Officer or Doctor."/"Oh right, I started by calling you Beverly so of course you are going to...." exchange was something of a highlight.

    Still, it's a bad idea to show the crew acting "out of character" this early -- I particularly love the crew talking about how they know Geordi is acting unusually because there's nothing in his file about being sad he can't see, because they clearly have not had time to find out any of this. The gender politics of the episode are also deeply weird -- all three female characters are distracted by sex and are the pursuers of all three of those relationships, whereas the male characters are actually given individualized desires (Geordi's sight, Wesley's desire to control the ship, the assistant chief engineer's desire to play with those chip things). It is nice to see women as the sexual aggressors, though.

    Probably 1.5 stars from me, though I might go up to 2.

    Worf: I don't understand their humor, either.
    Wesley: It was an adult who did it!
    Those two quotes can sum up most of this episode.

    Wesley I liked. He is a bright kid who for some reason (through most of season 1) is surrounded by professional adults who act very stupidly: Why would the assistant engineer leave him in charge (It was before the infection took hold of him)? Why would his mother not notice her son sweating buckets after she knew about Geordi's and Tasha's condition?

    Wesley being a very smart kid made sense for him doing all the things apart from the last 'saving the day' act. That just range false. I also loved this being a carefree Wes, drunk, happy and naughty. Much more enjoyable that his anxious to please everyone demeanor in later episodes.

    The other good thing besides Wesley was Data's "If you prick me would I not leak." Love the Shakespearean paraphrasing. Also, that small part foreshadows great episodes to come in the future.

    Small thing: both here and on Haven, Deanna calls Riker 'Bill'. Doesn't really suit him and I'm glad they changed that.

    I didn't watch the show in episode order so for me it wasn't the second episode and the first time seeing it was quite amusing. But the unsophisticated humor fades very quickly after a couple of viewings. I found myself now laughing derisively at it rather than with it.

    2 and a half stars? Seriously? For comedy value, maybe. Or how not to write.

    I find much of seasons 1 to be pretty bad television objectively but enjoyable for all of it's silly campiness and bad acting. Tasha's scene with Geordi is one of the worst written, acted and directed in the entire series and absolutely hilarious. AND we are shown that Wesley has obsessively recorded and pieced together Picard's words so that he can pretend that he is on the bridge! I don't even have words for that.

    Oh, they clearly didn't know what they were capable of yet. This was "Next Generation," but didn't believe it yet. This was a TOS show made in the '80s, that's all.

    I think if they were determined to give a nod this early to TOS, a better episode would have been a follow-up to "The Doomsday Machine" or "The Immunity Syndrome."

    Either would have kept them off a planet and put the crew into an intense situation similar to -- but not exactly like -- what TOS crew faced.

    It's bad enough to have a "let's show the characters get drunk" episode before we get to know them, but to also have Data be affected by it was a huge mistake as well. He's an android, not a cyborg. And the explanation of how the intoxication works makes no sense whatsoever in Data's ability to get it.

    That being said, their were some genuinely amusing moments in what is, at best, a pedestrian episode. Namely the classic Tasha/Data scene. The ones involving Beverly/Picard were great (more-so the ones that take place in sickbay). Also Picards numerous reactions as everything just seems to fall apart around him. And Wesley actually being utilized quite well rather than being a plot device.

    Sure it's oft-campy to the point of being almost absurdly so, but as Jammer said, at least it's not boring. Nope. It sure isn't. And there's definitely worse episodes of Star Trek than this. I don't think I'd rate this as high as it's rated here, though. It's worth a peek but you won't miss out on anything if you skip it. But I did grin a little more than I cringed. That's got to count for something, right?

    2 stars.

    Vylora: " also have Data be affected by it was a huge mistake as well. He's an android, not a cyborg. And the explanation of how the intoxication works makes no sense whatsoever..."

    DPC had the same objection earlier, but at the time nobody noticed. The series didn't establish how mechanical Data was until "Datalore." In fact, IIRC the previous episode stated that, short of a medical examination, Data was indistinguishable from organic beings. Like a Blade Runner replicant, perhaps, and therefore plausibly susceptible to illness and intoxication. If anything, the later revelation that he was full of wires & blinking lights was kinda dopey.

    Grumpy and Vylora:

    Data also stated somewhere in season 3 or 4 that he regularly eats and drinks regular meals / beverages as some sort of lubricant. Also Lore and he drink champagne in "Datalore". No word on whether he processes his food into robo-poop, though (might be included in his being "fully functional"...). Still, his biology can't be all too human, since we know from "Data's Day" that he doesn't require sleep. Which brings me to the question: What does Data run on, anyway? I don't remember ever seeing him ingesting any sort of energy source.

    i am glad gene Roddenberry didn't have as much control in later ep like he did with session 1 and 2 if he did the show wouldn't have been as good was it was. sure he came up with tos but he also had a lot of bad idea and most weren't done it seems. should say i hatted tos too btw.

    As others have noted, basically a TOS episode in disguise. And a slightly curious decision to have an out of character episode before the characters have really been established. But at least its carried off with flair and a fair degree of humour, and it rattles along at a decent pace. 2.5 stars.

    Tasha Yar really stands out as the most interesting character in these early episodes, shame she left.

    Hard to imagine how this series got renewed past the first few weeks with Farpoint and this to start it off!

    Oh well, Tasha had a great mid section at least :)

    I liked this episode, being very young when I saw it, and I still do. I personally think I was distracted by how much I was face palming and laughing through out the episode to see it's faults. I like Data' reaction to the virus. He has this sort of swagger that makes him seem on the verge on stupid and sassy, and it's incredibly funny. I honestly don't like Tasha all that much, but this did give me a (sort of?) positive light. The sex scene with her and Data raised my eyebrows with this line:

    "And what I want now is gentleness. And joy. And love. From you, Data."
    Not the best choice, honey. Love the reply, but it made it even more eyebrow-worthy:
    "I am programmed in multiple techniques, a broad variety of pleasuring."

    Oh dear.

    Although it does make him sound like a prostitute. (Is that even possible for him?)

    A fun, amusing episode but nothing more. I'd give it 2 stars. I found the whole premise a bit ridiculous - such as climate controls that go so low as to freeze people to death? When the "infection" spreads to Enterprise, why are some people walking around the ship, going about their duty normally, while others are making out in the corridor? The best scene for me was the Asian engineer sitting there playing with the chips like a 3 year old - hilarious, but at the same time, totally ridiculous. Which I guess sums up this episode.

    Oh no-second episode is even worse than the pilot.
    How this show survived almost two seasons of this is a testament to the stoic nature of star trek fans.
    What kind of a last name is Yar anyway?

    I'm making my way back through this series again, although I'm restricting myself to episodes Jammer rated 2.5 stars and above. Have to agree with the previous commenter that it's a miracle the series survived these early episodes which are just total camp. I would never watch this stuff today. To be fair I didn't really watch it back then either ; during TNG's original airing the first episode I saw was Conspiracy, and I wasn't able to regularly watch until season 3.

    What's always struck me is how much more expressive Data is early on, drunk or not, than he would later be. I guess eventually a writer or producer must've questioned why an android would be smirking all the time. Also can't wait until I get to the part of the series where they stopped thinking having Data misunderstand a human expression was hilarious. I know there's at least one more in my future ; "combusting the late evening petroleum" or some such. Screw you, early Data.

    No one, as far as I can see it, has yet commented on the greatest scene of this. Funny how maybe nobody else ever realized it, while my girlfriend and I spontaneously and simultaneously burst out with laughter. I'm talking about that tiniest of foot shuffles Picard performs when approaching Beverly Crusher. It's that minimal movement that first shows that he' s affected by the sickness too. Great economic acting like this raises the score considerably, so I definitely think this episode deserves a 3. Just for that well played classic scene. As for the rest, I agree it is pretty campy, but we did have fun.

    I enjoyed the episode, but did so while rolling my eyes.

    I had major issues with the following plot points:
    - Data can get "drunk" and hyposprays can fix it
    - They never initiated a ship-wide quarantine to stop the spread
    - Data obviously could have put all the chips back in. They kept cutting back to him and he seemed to be putting the same ones in
    - The sun explodes and expels a single "sun chunk" that happens to be going straight at the Enterprise? Pleaaaase.
    - They had to do the fancy tractor beam reversal, why? Just use the normal tractor beam to move the other ship in the way of the "sun chunk"

    Have to agree with all of the criticisms (and kudos) that have been stated so far.

    Perhaps I'm re-watching the series through a different lens than most. I remember watching them for the first time when they came out in the late 80s. I was in college and my Geek friends and I would get together each week to eat, drink, and watch the new episode. I had grown up on reruns of TOS and was giddy with a new series all my own! In both the pilot and the first few episodes, all of us just gobbled up the throw backs to TOS like candy! They were just what we needed to get hooked! I can see if I were watching this for the first time today how bad the episode would seem, but at the time we loved it.

    It's also interesting watching it today and realizing that the cast is still new to each other and settling into their roles.

    I liked it when I first saw it as a kid. I thought it was a clever idea to expose the inner longings of the crew, to speed our understanding of them. Some of it worked decently (Tasha has a troubled past and has adopted a tough-girl exterior while secretly longing to be feminine and cared for.). Some of it didn't (Beverly has an inexplicable desire for the guy who brought her husband's body home. Wait - is *that* why she requested to serve on the Enterprise? She's had a ten-year crush on her dead husband's commanding officer? Why??)

    Worst line in all Season One goes to Data:

    After the Tsirkovski explodes, Data says, "Captain, what we have just heard is..... Impossible! That last sound was an emergency hatch being blown."

    You might say it. I might say it. The word "impossible" is an acceptable hyperbole. But this is Data. He is so ultra-literal that he refuses to understand the phrase "needle in a haystack" until Riker clarifies "I should have said, a *proverbial* needle in a haystack." He is so precise with language that he finds it necessary to correct his commanding officer regarding the victims being "sucked out" vs "blown out" into space.

    So when our Data describes a sound as being "impossible", it had damn well better be impossible. That was a truly crappy dialogue choice, and I have no idea how all the writers and actors let it pass without protest.

    In other notes:

    --Tasha looked pretty fine in her drunken midriff-baring get-up with the little curl on her forehead.

    --Data didn't seem infected when Tasha approached him. I got the feeling he complied with her wishes because he thought it was part of his job. When propositioned by one's chief of security, a Starfleet officer must immediately disrobe and obey....

    --As I remember, in the second Q episode Riker gives Geordi the gift of normal sight and Geordi immediately turns to Yar and says "You're as beautiful as I imagined." Was there an intention for a Geordie-loves-Yar plot early on? I got that vibe here when he puts his hands up to her face.

    --What possessed Riker to think that a previous reference to "taking a shower in one's clothes" would shed any light on their current situation? Showering in one's clothes is not pathognomonic of any particular illness or toxic substance. (I did it myself once, cold sober, when preoccupied with a difficult new computer system being installed at my workplace. ). It signifies only nonspecific cognitive changes: confusion, poor concentration, impulsivity, etc. In 29 centuries of written records on earth, surely lots of clad showering incidents have been described?

    -- Why does Worf remain unaffected through it all? I credit his Klingon constitution. A warrior does not give in to any intoxicant but blood wine!

    On the topic of Data-I rather liked the early episodes where Data was seemingly just an artificial human, made of all the same parts, but each part an artificial reproduction of the real thing, instead of later episodes where it was decided he was all wires and blinking lights and had an off-switch on his back. The off-switch is especially stupid. Ever since they introduced it I keep wondering that Tasha didn't accidentally grab it while he was being "fully functional" with her and end up stuck with a deactivated Data for several hours. Yeesh.

    And then after they established he was a walking pile of bolts, it always severely annoyed me how in the first season they were always taking Data to sickbay and having Crusher do stuff to him. Hello, he's a robot. Have engineering work on him. Glad they fixed that in later seasons.

    Apart from everything else wrong with this episode, it does have this: jeopardy. The crisis deepens, and our heroes almost don't survive. That sense of dread sustains the episode.

    borusa: "What kind of a last name is Yar anyway?"

    Ukrainian. She was named for Babi Yar, the location of a WW2 massacre. A location is not necessarily a valid surname, though. (The character was originally called Macha Hernandez.)

    Wow, did Denise Crosby look amazing in that outfit. I always thought she was attractive, but I wouldn't have guessed she was quite...that. Sorry for the shallow observation!

    3 stars. I thought it was an entertainingly enough action adventure outing with a strong jeopardy with ticking clock. Some fun moments amongst the cast too

    I'm a little more forgiving of "Farpoint" on a new viewing and less forgiving of "Naked."

    Way, way too early for an episode of this nature. And I remember at the time thinking: "Oh my God. All they are going to do is recycle old series scripts."

    Not that it was a great episode, but something along the lines of "Symbiosis."

    @Eduardo - I know I'm replying to a 10 year old comment but I don't think this is an error:

    > "This line makes no sense. Data is working on a bridge acces panel. He should be UPLOADING data to sickbay, not the other way around."

    If I connect my phone to my PC and instruct the PC to start streaming a movie, the PC is downloading the movie from netflix/youtube/whatever. The phone is just giving it the instruction "Go download this file". Depending on the ship's infrastructure, the data might have been downloaded from the central computer to the bridge but data then makes the same information available in medical.

    Pedantic, yes, but in response to previous pedantry!

    Not sure what it says if the 2nd episode of TNG is a straight re-hash of 1 of the earliest TOS classics and makes no bones about it with almost the same title as "The Naked Time". Anyhow, some entertaining scenes with the ship being in danger from the collapsing star -- seen it all before and done far better in TOS.

    Some good comedic moments from Data -- not buying the logic of how he gets infected though. Picard especially and Crusher are pretty funny too when under the influence. Yar/Data and their looks after being cured is good -- the 2 develop a good relationship.

    Wesley takes on the role of Riley locking himself in engineering. At least he didn't sing "I'll take you home Kathleen..." The boy genius thing is ridiculous here -- how he immediately turns the tractor beam into a repulsion beam -- well, if the TOS version could cold-start the engines, then I guess I'll let this one slide.

    "The Naked Time" had a wonderful performance from Spock who grieved for his mother. It was such good acting to see him fighting off the emotions while trying to tell Scotty how to restart the engines. We don't get anything near to that quality here.

    2 stars for "The Naked Now" -- just too similar to the TOS original. Are there any other 2 Trek episodes from different series that are this similar? The crew gets to act wacky and generates a few chuckles -- so it's not boring and we do get some insights into the fundamental desires of some of the crew members.

    Not Star Trek's finest by a long shot. The only thing it did right was making the polywater infection actually come across more like alcohol intoxication than in the original.

    Poor D.C. Fontana! The concept was ripped off from her former TOS colleague John D.F. Black and then gets tossed a teaser and first act from Roddenberry and was told to finish the script.

    I know Wesley was conceived as a brilliant Mozart of engineering skill, but this kid was written to be hated. It was ridiculous how he made trained adults with years of experience looks like boobs - a procedure the damn Chief Engineer declares would take weeks of laying out new circuit pathways, he achieves by pushing a few buttons? Kid was toast from the start.

    I did love custome designer William Ware Theiss's one-fingered salute to the censors of the past with Tasha's seductress look exposing both her navel and undersides of her breasts - two no-no's during his tenure on TOS.

    I need some of what the crew was having to get through watching this.

    Fully functional and programmed in multiple techniques?! Kill me now.

    Highly entertaining. Data is the luckiest android in history. Good idea to incorporate tos lore.

    First off, this opening is hilarious, "Hope ou have a lot of pretty boys onboard, because I'm willing, and waiting...", great delivery! Data is sporting some funky ellow eyes here, are they always like that? how did I not notice before? Some good erie music to accompany the mystery of the raging party. Hopefully this is how Richard Branson will run his space flights.

    Next the Enterprise gets the party bug. Hijinks ensue, then Data fucks Tasha, lol. I don't think people realize how epic this is, on the second episode nonetheless. lots of laugh out loud moments in this one for me, "there once was a woman from venus....". Great episode! Five stars.

    I Hate this ep! Not one actor was up to par in their acting in this ridiculous story. Drunk people do not act like these actors who were all trying to act drunk. Can you imagine having sex with a robot? Data probably weighs two thousands pounds at that and I think in some ep they tell his weight along with other details.

    I just read a tidbit about the Yar character yesterday and there was a person who did not know why Denise left the series. She and Roddenberry both said she wanted to do movies. She was offered a part and took it in PET SEMETARY and she did a few more movies that were forgettable. She made the rounds on various t.v. shows and so on. But when she was on talk shows she would always tell how she was the illegitimate daughter of one of Bing Crosby's sons of which I no longer recall his name. That sort of thing could ruin a person as far as the Hollywood crowd goes. Shove it down the throats of those who don't like you. Gene R himself sheepishly said he wished he had not let her go and he said the same thing about Grace Lee Whitney who by the way died in 2015.

    Let me add this piece: In the same area where I found the above (Yar) I also found this about Jennifer Lien (Kes)....someone in the know said that Jerry Taylor who is the mother of Alexander Enberg (Vorik) approached Jennifer to date her son (Enberg) and Jennifer would not do it. That took place just before her final ep, the Gift. >> And Enberg, in his early forties, had a stroke and was in a coma for a short while.

    Back to NAKED NOW. TOS'S Scotty actor did not like this episode either. He said how he and others figured TNG would not make it and guess what(?)... way down the line he appears on the show and has to be "beaten" up mentally by Geordi LaForge! That makes me angry enough to bite nails in half every time I watch it. For a long while I hated Geordi. He was very overblown egotistically and it showed.

    I personally think this episode has greatly improved with time. I saw it when it was first run back in 1987 and hated it.

    By far the biggest problem was having a goofy episode where everybody was out of character was way out of place as the first episode after the pilot. We didn’t know these characters at all, and making Picard look like a confused old man while Riker saves the day was awful.

    Even Wesley as wunderkind wasn’t that bad the way it played out here, and while developing Wesley in that way was horribly dreadful, it was season wide and not specific to this episode.

    This episode could comfortably fit in seasons 3-6 with a 3 star rating.

    As for whether it’s “funny”... Trek very rarely does comedy well, so whatevs. There are funny bits here and there but Voyager’s Tinker Tenor is the only Trek episode setting out to be funny that really succeeds, imho.

    I still remember lines from this from 30 years ago...or reruns 15 or 20 years ago. "Not now Doctor!" and "I am fully functional"

    Such fun, such juvenile fun! They are all just barely being held back from clawing at each others clothes. Isn't Starfleet big enough to find crew that haven't done it or fantasized about doing it?

    This episode was better than the last one for showing the whole ensemble in action.

    Wesley is unsufferable. I think he gets better before worse again if memory serves

    I started re-watching TNG a while ago and and I am going to re-watch all of the episodes in order. I jotted down some ideas, but as it progressed it got much more in depth. I feel at this point I jotted down (what I thought was) funny ideas. Is it campy? Yes. Did I enjoy it? Yes. Would I randomly watch it unless I was re-watching it in order from the premiere? No. However, the performances were all on point and the actors, who had to act out of character but still within character nailed it (especially Gates McFadden - I loved her performance this episode and her body language with Patrick Stewart). Wesley Saves The Day [TM] had its premiere in this episode and it was acceptable here, and the tension at the end was actually built up when the Enterprise had to destroy the asteroid. Tasha Yar does have the best line: “Helping people is better.” Some of the lines were incredible corny and over the top - not sure who wrote those in? However, it is still an enjoyable episode that showcased all of the characters and that is where TNG worked best - when it was an ensemble show. ***

    Hello Everyone!

    I've been doing a limited re-watch of this with my Wife, who has never seen them before (cutting out the stinkers, as she'd have no patience for 'em).

    Watching back in the day, yes it was a cute episode, but without some sort of indication of what the crew members were about and how they acted, it was mildly difficult to realize how much they were out of (normal) character.

    So I left this one until the end(ish) of season one, and it made it better, because we'd seen how the characters interact and how they are portrayed.

    She isn't a fan quite yet, but was mildly amused. :D

    *Mild, mild spoilers after this*

    Other than Wesley not being an acting bridge officer yet (hey, grab the prodigy when you can), it makes it more enjoyable to view. In my humble opinion of course.

    *Spoilers done*

    Have a Great Day... RT

    Was just watching the 'Dave I'm Losing My Mind' scene from 2001, and realised that isolinear chips were invented in 1968

    This episode is really really bad. Saved from being 0-star only by the fact that much of it is so awful it's hilarious.

    Also, the 1st non-pilot of the series is a really dumb to have an "everybody is forced to act out of character" episode, since we don't know what anybody is like IN character at this point.

    Pretty dull. Did not hold my interest at all.

    Very obvious theme about the need to balance intellect and emotion, self-control and indulgence.

    You hold things in too long, build up too much internal pressure, they'll blow out the hatch all at once, the second you open it. (I know, you're thinking they get sucked out. Correction!! Common mistake, though.)

    But if you indulge your every whim, indiscriminately, well - you'll freeze if you let ALL your heat out.

    I liked the reference to TOS, it was part of a lot of references to history and the past. Just a lot about . . . build up (over time) and release, all with a red giant collapsing in the background.

    Not bad, but the boring kills this ep.

    @Springy, nice to see you going through TNG. I love TNG but season 1 especially is rough.

    I like your analysis of this episode regarding not letting things build up, the dangers of over indulging.... This episode infamously starts a series of Wesley precociously saves the day by making a calculation a computer can't (???) but on theme it's worth noting that Wesley's bubbling talent is partly something that normally has to get subsumed into pranks and actually applying his gifts to something important is only allowed by the boozy release valve. Similar maybe for Tasha's going after Data, where the idea is probably that her default oppositional mode is allowed to be suspended when she allows herself to indulge in a little tenderness outside the security chief job description. That Picard doesn't really let his guard down even with Crusher even while infected should say something about how much integrity he has and/or how deeply locked in he is.

    I have a soft spot for this silly episode. It was so good just to have ANY new Trek on TV at that point that I and many others were in a kind of Phantom Menace Denial Period for the first (very weak) season of TNG. I didn't mind the forced early character development... they desperately needed it after that terrible pilot, and they didn't go backwards on any of it in later episodes. Data/Yar became crucial in The Measure of a Man. Troi/Riker were a staple, and Beverly/JLP. Lots of stupid lines that were at least memorable. Pretty sure this was meant to establish some ground rules quickly. The only part of this episode I find insufferable is Wesley until the last five minutes.

    @William B Hey, I apologize if this is weird, but this is the most recent comment I've seen here and I just wanted to say I greatly enjoy all your thoughtful, well written comments here, even when I don't agree with you. Always hoped you would decide to rewatch all of Enterprise one day.

    Yes, @William B, this is my first time re-watching TNG since I saw it when it was first broadcast in the UK and I am enjoying your reviews and the comments here very much. They are very...Engaging!

    I am re-watching this in mid-March, so comparisons between the fictional mystery illness, and coronavirus, are almost inevitable - though a closer scifi analogy to CV might be the plague that wipes out an entire people in Babylon 5. (Which IMO is more watchable & more interesting than DS9 - but that is BTW).

    It is very funny to see Wesley in full-on Obnoxious Brat Mode. His sort-of-inebriation makes him more tolerable than some of the times when he is not intoxicated.

    The speed with which TNG Enterprise gets through its Chief Engineers is outdone only by the rapidity with which Voyager uses up its complement of 38 photon torpedos.

    We’re on our second episode and already we’re retreading TOS episodes. One fortunate thing about that, however, is the acknowledgment of the events of TOS’s “The Naked Time”. That’s also a flaw because then it calls for a direct comparison to the original. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stand up to the task.

    That’s not to say “The Naked Now” is bad. It’s just not good either. It’s entertaining with lots of lightheartedness but given this is the first adventure with these characters outside of the pilot, we’re not ready to see them acting out of character just yet. We’re given insight into their feelings, yes, but we spend most of the episode watching all the women pretty much get horny while the men get annoyed and frustrated. Fun but inconsequential.

    🖖 🖖 1/2

    It seems that I am coming to this from a different point of view than most: I watched all of TOS a few years ago, but had never seen TNG before a couple of months ago. I started with season 3 because of all the warnings about the first two seasons. I decided to watch this episode — my very first from season 1 — after watching season 4’s “In Theory” (which I did not like) and hearing that Data’s character had originally been played as far more human, a possibility that made questions about his personhood seem more interesting to me.

    As someone who watches the show mostly for the hypotheticals/moral dilemmas and not so much for character drama, I expected to hate this episode, but I actually rather liked it. A smiling, biologically vulnerable, and perhaps quietly emotional Data who is so tantalizingly close-but-not-quite-there in human terms is more interesting to me than the Data at the conclusion of “In Theory,” where the writers seem to definitely proclaim that Data is merely a computer we love to anthropomorphize (it is also annoyingly inconsistent with his behavior in other episodes). On top of that, this was my first introduction to Tasha Yar who seems like someone with an interesting background who I would’ve liked to get to know better — with her tough exterior and vulnerable inside she’s far more interesting than either Troi or Crusher. Her seeking out Data reads more genuine and compelling than the random coupling we see in “In Theory” — imagine we’d had a storyline about Tasha’s mixed feelings about having, well, _feelings_ for a robot, and how much more that could have propelled Data’s story too, instead of the rather limp one-off we get in “In Theory.” It seems clear that originally the writers were envisioning a long-term storyline as with Troi/Riker and Crusher/Picard and I think that could have been more fun to watch than either of those two couples.

    I’m glad the show ultimately moved away from Geordi’s eyesight being a source of consternation for him though — I always thought it was nice how his eyesight is a non-issue for most of the series, with neither Geordi nor others making much of a big deal about it. Geordi is just Geordi: excellent engineer, endearingly unlucky in love, and all around nice guy. We are aware he is blind, and it’s not hidden from us or without its challenges, but that’s not the most prominent or deepest part of his character.

    Riker gets a nice turn to shine here — his ability to keep in control after being infected is both a comment on his strength of character and on how different he is from his colleagues: he seems to be the only member of the crew who’s not really hiding anything and who wears his heart on his sleeve. His relative sobriety is perhaps also a tacit indication about how “out of control” everyone else really is. The contagion is repeatedly compared to a state like drunkenness, and it’s not altogether uncommon for genuine drunkenness to also provide a cover for knowingly engaging in behavior that will later be excused. Picard, Crusher, and Troi may be inebriated, but whatever logical part of them that’s left (and there is some since Crusher, for example, manages to concoct a cure, etc) also knows that they can say or do anything while infected and it won’t “count” against them later.

    Most of the other characters (Crusher, Troi, Worf) are surprisingly consistent with their later characterizations given what I’d heard about the unevenness of season 1. The only person who comes off a bit more poorly in this episode is actually Picard, who, whether he’s dislikes children or not, seems too genuinely flustered by Wesley, and without the calm and cool so familiar in later seasons. I’ve never understood the Wesley hate, so his prominent presence in the episode is not a problem for me either.

    All the complaints about cringe-inducing dialogue detailed in other comments certainly stand, though. I couldn’t watch Crusher’s horribly on-the-nose comments about Picard being attractive complete with the cliched unzipping of the top of her uniform without some definite squirming. But because I already knew the characters far better by the time I got around to this episode than I think most viewers did when they first viewed it, the episode overall mostly played for me the way it was supposed to: a fun way to watch the crew let their hair down.

    Showing that Data gets drunk is as big a fail as when they showed Luke and Leia making out. It two more films before they reversed course and made them brother and sister. After this episode season, Data didn't even have emotions, much less et drunk. Reminds me of the first season of TOS, where Spoke was shown to smile. He later became serious as a heart attack.

    Data initially was envisioned as being an android with flesh components ... hence the reason he became intoxicated.

    That concept lingers for a while. Note this exchange in "Deja Q":

    DATA: Although I do not require sustenance, I occasionally ingest semi-organic nutrient suspension in a silicon-based liquid medium.
    Q: Is it good?
    DATA: It would be more accurate to say it is good for me, as it lubricates my bio-functions.

    At some point they quietly dropped the idea that he has any biological component (note that the absence thereof is what saves him in First Contact).

    Some claim this episode proves that Tasha is straight.


    Instead of hooking up with an actual human, male or female, she essentially chooses the world's largest vibrating dildo.

    I've always wondered what happens when Data "Arrives"
    What would be fired out, motor oil, positronic lubricants, perhaps something else... And at what ferocity?
    He could end up firing Yar through the Mattress.

    The Naked Now

    TNG season 1 episode 2

    "I hope you have a lot of pretty boys on board, because I'm willing and waiting. In fact, we're going to have a real blow-out here.”

    - A fleeting offer of fellatio

    2 1/2 stars (out of 4)

    Well this was a let down. Given what an epic tour de force the TOS episode “Naked Time” was, with scenes that stick with you for the rest of your life, like Spock crying,

    this goofy hour of TNG cannot - and perhaps does not - try to rise to that level of compelling television. Instead we get a series of literally juvenile pranks, only some of which involve Wesley. Geordi is the Spock-like sad drunk, but he is more angry than sad - yelling at Beverly and Riker.

    Not one of the TNG crew would make a good drinking buddy. There are no Scotty’s here. No Bashirs. Not even a Malcolm/Trip drunken adventure. I only wonder what O’Brien was up to during the hour?

    Well maybe Assistant Chief Engineer Jim Shimoda would be fun to drink with. "It was an adult who did it!”

    There are a few nice subtle touches. Picard gets ridiculously cocky when Data and Riker find the cure in the ship’s library. Crusher asks him if he is absolutely sure it will work,

    PICARD: You can relax, Doctor. The answer to all of this is feeding into your medical banks right now. Including a cure.

    CRUSHER: Are you certain, Captain?

    PICARD: Absolutely.

    The subtle look Data gives is priceless. Like seriously dude, how the fuck can you be “absolutely” sure?!? Of course Picard was probably drunk at the time.

    Finally, I’ll end with this exchange,

    CRUSHER: You brought Deanna in.

    RIKER: She's infected with-

    CRUSHER: Then you touched her! Oh God, and you touched me. Wait, I've got to quarantine you!

    One guess as to whether Riker agrees to be quarantined ;)

    According to Wikipedia, Gene Roddenberry wanted an early episode to establish desires and fears of the crew. Unfortunately, it didn’t work very well.

    The Naked Time, an early episode, did a great job of establishing Kirk’s and Spock’s personalities. Kirk’s veritable love and obsession with the Enterprise was laid bare, with the very real possibility of the ship being destroyed in 30 minutes. Spock feared losing control of his emotions, and that is exactly what happened here.

    I think the reuse of the Naked Time plot, with the crew seeming to have no particular knowledge of Kirk and his Enterprise were actually meant to indicate they didn’t plan to lean on the original series too much, though I don’t think that worked either.

    It is funny to read of others that came to TNG later. It’s a very different perspective than for us in 1987, thoroughly grounded in TOS, groaning in dismay at episodes like this. I’d say most of us hung on until it got better, but oh boy, you definitely weren’t telling any of your non-Trek friends “wow, you gotta watch this!” That really didn’t happen until The Best of Both Worlds.

    I was under the impression that GR went out of his way to minimize the influence of TOS on TNG. It's odd then that the second episode was a TOS remake.

    One thing that bugs me about this one I haven't seen mentioned yet: the Federation's tractor beam technology is supposedly only able to pull, not push, at this point. When did it take a step backwards and become unidirectional? It could both push and pull in the original Star Trek!

    There’s a lot of fun in this episode. The dialogue is much more daring than the original series: Picard gets to say “What the hell...” which would probably have blown the fuse of the average American viewer in the 60s; as for “There was a young lady from Venus, Whose body was shaped like a.....”. LMAO!

    But.. it’s already clear by episode 2 that some leading characters from TOS will never be replaced by characters even nearly as good. For example, McCoy and Scotty. It IS good though, to see many more female characters having significant parts rather than as mere Yeobabes.

    I didn’t mind this being a replay of TOS ‘The Naked Time’ - apart from Sulu’s sword wielding (which was brilliant), they managed some effective drunkenness, and I liked the way they had the sufferers knowing they were infected while behaving irrationally. Data being infected? That was not something anyone would have expected! But all the same, I didn’t find it believable: he would have had circuits and subroutines that would have kicked in and countered the “virus”. More boring TV though.

    You’re wrong. Information going from the main computer to a subsidiary system is a DOWNLOAD not an upload.

    Passable. I’d give it 2 stars.

    One thing I noticed about these early TNG episodes is the lighting in certain scenes is poor as compared to later TNG episodes where it was brighter, warmer. The scenes in engineering in this episode just seemed to not have the right balance of light. Something like the film quality also looks a bit off, whereas in later seasons it feels much softer, higher quality.

    Just another thing that made TNG S1 less enjoyable but that the showrunners figured out how to get right in the later seasons.

    Why didn't they just use the transporter to beam into the engineering section Wesley was keeping them from?

    Not only is this episode absolutely terrible, but the choice to make this the 2nd episode of the entire franchise stands as a ridiculous decision. None of these characters have been developed. Not only is the plot unoriginal, the execution is worse. Picard stuttering and stammering, awkwardly waving at "Bev."

    I give it half a star just because I know things will get much better eventually.

    I'm not sure how these two questions didn't occur to me before:

    What would it have looked like if Worf had been affected? I think all the other regular characters eventually are, but Worf just sits quietly at his post the whole time. Are Klingons immune? Is it just that no one onboard would dare to touch him, so they didn't pass the contaminant on to him? And how lucky is everyone not to have had a megadrunk Klingon running around the ship?

    And did Crusher's revised antidote formula work on Data? As the captain (and many commenters here) said, an android shouldnt have been affected in the first place. How do you then make him UNaffected?

    (Years ago, I actually wrote an unpublished TNG novel which has Data making a deliberate decision to pretend to be affected so that he will seem to be more like his biological crewmates, which of course casts a different light on his encounter with Tasha.)

    The last few comments hit the nail on the head. Tractor beams were able to repel in the OS. What's even more interesting is that we never even see a tractor beam once in the OS, and they almost seem out of place for that series. Like they lack replicators (not 100% sure), holodecks, but have graviton technology or whatever. The funniest part of this episode is yet again with the physics. At the end, they "get a few seconds" by bouncing the older ship into the stellar fragment which seems to slow it down, and they get a tiny boost that let's them get away just in time. Do the writers have no concept of weight/mass/size/force? Hitting a compact piece of a STAR that weighs who knows how many tons, that's traveling at RELATIVISTIC Speeds after being ejected by a supernova ain't going to be slowed down by even a millisecond by smashing a tiny ship into it! And when they do get away, they show the fragmented as if its strolling by. Come on man.

    @ Michael Miller,

    You're right, in hindsight this episode is a bit silly.

    I really like reading all the criticisms of the plot holes, despite the episodes still being entertaining, but I find it interesting how some of the even more obvious ones, like the ones I mentioned, are missed lol. I would put the "slowing down" a 10^20 ton star chunk that's traveling at millions of mph by crashing a ship into it as one of the top ten, maybe even top three, outrageous physics errors in all of star trek. The other 2 being the apes "holding down" the Galileo 7, and the night terror one where they claimed a chemical explosion with Hydrogen would be more powerful than a matter-anti-matter torpedo explosion, (arguably the highest energy yielding process possible). Oh and not to forget Parallax which tries to depict an event horizon as some physical barrier and not a location in space.

    I just want to make a few remarks about some underappreciated characters and their performances in this turkey. First, observing Crosby's use of her body in her drunk scenes, yes it's ridiculous that she was made to do these things in episode #2, and no doubt it affected how seriously she regarded the show. However she moves very well and it's interesting how the drunk affect gave her an excuse to move around in a non-military way to good effect. Yes, it's a 'stereotype sexy walk' but that and other details are very nice signals that she could be physically versatile in the role. We also see decent things out of her in future episodes in combat situations, so it seems that she could do various things quite nicely. She also has a pretty decent 'wildly spirited' look to her whole she's drunk. I guess I'm trying to look past the audience perspective (that it's just embarrassing to watch) and to see the work she put into it regardless. I think this makes her look a lot worse than she really is as a performer.

    Another standout is Wesley, actually. As in the pilot, Wheaton appears to have loads of energy, and despite the episode giving him the annoying Kevin Reilly role of signing in engineering and us wanting him dead, he nails the scene where he's drunk in engineering and yet figuring out how to reconfigure the tractor beam. You sit in front of a plastic set and say those lines and see how well you do! And his hand motions and focus are extraordinarily good during all this. It's a very detailed and precise bit of acting. I also rather like how he tricks Picard into giving him something to do:

    PICARD: You will now return control of this vessel to the Bridge where it belongs. At once.
    WESLEY [on viewscreen]: I'm sorry, sir. Why don't you just tell me what you want done and I'll do it.
    WESLEY [on viewscreen]: So you mean I'm drunk! I feel strange, but also good.
    PICARD: Because, because you've lost the capacity for self-judgment. Now, alcohol does this, Wesley. But this contaminant we've brought back from the Tsiolkovsky does it even more so.
    WESLEY [on viewscreen]: What would you do if you got your ship back?
    PICARD: Oh, it's very important I do, Wesley, because I must immediately lock a tractor beam onto the Tsiolkovsky, then tow it out of,
    WESLEY [on viewscreen]: Tractor beams are my specialty, Skipper! I'll contact you when that's done. Wesley out!

    This is deceptively cheeky writing. Even though he's drunk as a skunk Wesley appears to outwit Picard by playing the part of a youth being given an after school special about alcohol. Assuming that was intentional, it's cute.

    There's not much more in a positive vein I can say about this one. Some of the scenes are frankly unbearable. What Stewart and McFadden do together in some of their scenes is simply outlandish. Data falling on the floor is stupefying. Picard pointing out (correctly) that it makes no sense that Data is infected is so meta that it loops around and becomes zero. More like the naked story.

    Fortunately this episode has those early TNG score moments that are more overpowering than any image onscreen. Otherwise it would play like straight comedy punctuated by brief moments of horror.

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