Wednesday, November 20, 2013

"Schisms"



I saw an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation last night that I didn't remember from "back in the day."

The title of the episode was "Schisms." It dealt with alien abduction.

All of the classic hallmarks of abduction were there.  Crew members such as Commander Riker were unable to get restful sleep.  They would go to bed and an instant later wake up exhausted.   Psychological triggers abounded.  Dr. Crusher attempts to approach Riker with a medical tricorder and he flinches.  Worf goes to get a haircut and freaks out when the scissors near his face.

In the Budd Hopkins role, Counselor Troi calls together all the crew who have reported having these experiences and basically holds a group therapy session.  Through the wonders of holography, the characters pool their sketchy memories and recreate the medical examination table they had been taken to time and again in their sleep.  It is discovered that a race of hooded aliens have been reaching into the Enterprise through subspace pockets and spiriting crew members away to conduct bizarre medical experiments.  Seriously, it was like hypnotic regression only without the hypnosis. 

This really underscored with me the fact that the entire concept of alien abduction is now woven into our culture.  Maybe it always has been if you look at myth and legend (inccubi, succubi, changelings, etc.)  But there is this sense that to do the story, certain tropes must be in place and there is even an order and procedure to it.  The alien beings even made clicking sounds of the type that several abductees have reported the Grays making during their alleged experiences.  In fact, it might have been a somewhat gutsy move but I would have liked to have seen the show go the full monty and have it actually be the Grays that were doing the abducting.  That might have "broken the spell" somewhat and it might not have felt like fiction anymore, but could have been interesting.  I would like to have seen how the crew would have reacted.

Another aspect of the episode that I liked was the fact that it was rather unresolved.  The crew of the Enterprise halts these subspace intrusions, but they never really find what the motivation was behind the abductions.  Why were the aliens doing it?  Did they need human and other forms of DNA to further their species?  Were they irredentists gleaning necessary intelligence for a subspace invasion?  The intentions are never fully discerned.  Plus, the "reaching through holes in subspace" seemed to embrace the concept of abductions being extradimensional or perhaps even related to aspects of the subconscious.  I'm always interested in viewing UFO and ET matters through progressive means.

Anyway, not much more to say about it apart from my having found it interesting.  Some nights that's the most you can expect from me.

Oh and before you ask, no.  No one got butt probed.





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2 comments:

  1. "Tron-tro-trrr... try t-t-to relax, Mr. Mott," the voice stammered. "We have tron-tro-t...t... tr... t-traveled a great distance to... speak with you."

    Wide awake, still in bed, heart pounding like a goddam jackhammer, body still in the grip of sleep paralysis... completely helpless... eyes fixed on the nightstand... I could only wait for the voice to speak again or for my chest to explode.

    "What will tron-tra-tr-tran-tra-transpire t-to-tonight is... absolutely... necessary."

    I could sense three figures in the darkness. They weren't moving, yet they were each possessed by a queer palsy. I struggled to regain control of my body... my rage swelled, I wanted to lash out... break them in half. Splatter them against the wall. The revolver was in the top drawer of the nightstand. If only I could...

    The voice continued: "We will now apply... the tr-tr-trondent!"

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  2. Then from a table parallel to mine, I heard a shrill and plaintive voice: "They're monsters...MONSTERS! I must write the book! Warn the world."

    "Oh no, Whitley," the said. "No no no. Tr-tr-trondent time."

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