Stardate: 43917.4
Rating: *** 1/2

Edited Length: 45:27
U.S. Airdate: May 27, 1990
Nielsen Rating/Rank: [10.6/3]

Guest Stars
Mark Lenard: [Sarek]
Joanna Miles: [Perrin]
William Denis: [Ki Mendrossen]
Rocco Sisto: [Sakkath]
Colm Meaney: [O'Brien]

Line Producer: David Livingston
Co-Producers: Hans Beimler & Richard Manning
Producer: Ira Steven Behr
Co-Executive Producer: Michael Piller
Executive Producer: Rick Berman
Television Story and Teleplay By: Peter S. Beagle
From an Unpublished Story By: Mark Cushman & Jake Jacobs
Directed By: Les Landau

[end credit]
Executive Producer: Gene Roddenberry

[closing credits]
Co-Producer: Peter Lauritson
Executive Script Consultant: Melinda M. Snodgrass
Story Editor: Ronald D. Moore

John H. Francis: [Science Crewman]


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Extended Synopsis (by Tim Lynch) ------------------------------------

Ambassador Sarek comes on board with his staff and his new (also human) wife, Perrin, to complete a treaty with the Legarans (his last mission before retiring). Although his aides seem overly concerned with his health (Sarek himself says they're overprotective and seems fine), and Sarek is slightly cranky (as cranky as a Vulcan ever gets), all seems well. (We do, however, see a bit later that Sarek is currently unable to meditate to attain peace.)

Then, not long after he comes on board, tempers start flaring up on board the ship: Wesley and Geordi start arguing with each other heatedly while setting up the conference room and are broken up by Riker. Then, after a Mozart recital which Sarek attends (and at which Picard actually sees Sarek cry), tempers get worse: Bev slaps Wesley for no reason, and Ten-Forward becomes the site of a bar brawl.

Bev and Troi eventually advance a theory: Sarek himself may be the cause, due to a very rare malady contracted by aged Vulcans known as Bendai's syndrome, in which all emotional control is gradually eroded away. Eventually, Data confronts Sarek's young aide Sakkath about his odd behavior (checking to see how Picard's diplomatic skills are, and so forth), and eventually finds that Sarek indeed suffers from the disease, and that Sakkath has been trying to help Sarek's control, with limited success. This will jeopardize the treaty with the Legarans (since Sarek's the only one they'll speak to), but Picard is forced to convince Sarek of this anyway, over the objections of both Perrin and Sarek's chief of staff, Mendrossen (also a human).

Picard manages to convince Sarek of his ailment (by driving him virtually incoherent with rage, which he shouldn't be able to do), but is then struck by remorse over what he has done to such a great man. Upon Perrin's later suggestion, Picard suggests to Sarek that the two of them mind-meld, giving Sarek the added control he needs, and letting Picard serve as a temporary well for Sarek's emotions. Despite the risk, they go through with it, and while Picard/Sarek rages over his inability to tell people he loves how much he loves (or loved, in the case of the dead) then, Sarek/Picard manages to conclude the treaty. Sarek expresses his gratitude to Picard, and says they will each retain the best part of the other. He leaves, his mission successful, but his control eroding further...and Bendai's Syndrome has, at present, no cure.

Highlight Listing:
"Sarek." The Enterprise is plagued by an outbreak of violence when it is visited by a renowned Vulcan ambassador.
Advertising Headline:
OUT OF CONTROL! An outbreak of violence rocks the Enterprise!
TV log listing:
Violence rocks the Enterprise!/STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION
Operation SNAFU
The music recital in this episode contained several errors. First, the quartet seating is towards the audience, not toward each other. Classical music was originally developed with the performers facing each other in order to get visual cues. Performing in front of the audience did not come about until much later. Second, the Allegro is by Brahm's, not Mozart. Third, the Allegro is a sextet, not a quartet. (UV) Also, in this story, Geordi and Wesley are setting up this pool, and Wesley says that the temperature is 150 degrees celsius, which is 302 degrees Farenheit. However, there was no obvious radiant heat because Geordi and Wesley stand close to the pool and peer inside. (UV)

Editor's Note:
The Allegro is "String Quartet No. 19 in C Major," also known as "The Dissonant" (K. No.465). Confirmation that the adagio is Brahms's came from Betsey Crockett Shay (bcs@rti.rti.org) and her husband (who is a Ph.D. candidate in musicology). They both identified it as "the Andante, ma moderato movement of Brahm's Sextet #1 in B-flat Major", (though the actual movement is in d-minor). Not only isn't it by Mozart, it isn't a quartet - it's a SEXTET!

[ Mr. Video Productions ]

Andrew Tong

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