Tuesday, March 22, 2011

TNG Ep.13: DataLore

It has Data in the title, so you know it's good!

The Enterprise has a few hours downtime and stops at Data's home planet, where several colonists disappeared, which Data remembers almost nothing about. Data shows the landing party where he was found and activated, and there La Forge discovers a hidden underground lab and bunker. Upon exploring the bunker they find creepy child-like drawings and what appears to be a duplicate Data, both of which they bring back to the ship. After the second android is assembled, he calls himself Lore and proceeds to mostly discreetly wreck havock on the ship. Lore explains that the drawings are of a life-consuming crystal entity, which he then secrectly calls to the ship while prentending to be Data. Wesley figures out the ruse, leading to Data being reactivated and fighting Lore in the transporter room. Wesley beams Lore out with the sheilds up, and the crystal being makes haste on its escape.

Ok, I know I said that Haven was the best episode so far, but now I can't decide. My fan girl love of Data says that this episode is even better - or at least equal. We get to see Brent Spiner act twice, and beat himself up! We get to see what Data might have been like if he had human eotions, which it's clear that Lore does. We also learn more about his past, that Lore was created first, then disassembled because he was too mentally unstable and murderous. Once again, the writers deliver on a character-backstory episode. The more I think back on this episode, the more I'm convinced that I loved every instant of it.

"How sad, Lore. You make me wish I was an only child."

And since Lore was so epic, you know there's no way he's gone for good. Even more than Q, he's like the boogie man that aways twitches at the end of the movie, and he always comes back. He's a mass murderer and he's a perfect foil for Data. Even if I didn't remember that he's in later episodes, I'd be expecting it.

Another epic moment: when Data weakly asks his brother for help, having been poisoned by his brother, and while his brother is ranting inanely. It gives Data a sort of innocence. Lore is literally the brother he had wished he had, and most likely the only android of his type or caliber that he will ever see in the crew's lifetime. Is it too much to hope that Lore won't try to kill him? Apparently. In a way that makes Data more alone than he was before, and you can hear it in that plaintive cry, in that last moment before Data's trust of his brother is shattered.

Yes. I really, really like Data.

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