name = Starship Mine
series = TNG
ep_num = 144
prod_num = 244
March 29 1993
stardate = 46682.4
year = 2369
prev = Birthright (Part 2)
next = Lessons
"Starship Mine" is a sixth season episode of . This action-packed episode features Picard in a one-man battle with mercenaries who invade the evacuated "Enterprise".
The Enterprise is docked at the Remler Array in preparation for a
baryonsweep, a space-age decontamination procedure with a deadly beam that combs through the entire ship. To this end the entire ship needs to be evacuated and all systems shut down.
Picard and other members of the crew are invited to a cocktail party by Commander Calvin "Hutch" Hutchinson, an officer who is notorious for his ability to engage in small talk. Cornered by Hutch, Picard sees an opportunity to escape the party by going horseback riding nearby, and "urgently" ducks out to retrieve his saddle from the Enterprise before the decontamination gets underway. On his way back to the transporter room he notices some panels in one of the corridors have been opened. As he investigates he is approached by a technician from the array (Tim Russ) who tries to explain the purpose for removing the panels. However Picard does not believe him. The technician attacks him but Picard manages to overpower him, using the saddle to knock the technician unconscious.
With the ships computer shut down Picard is trapped on the ship. Interrogating the technician he learns that he is part of group of mercenaries planning to steal particles from the Enterprise's warp reactor to be sold to another group; particles whose obvious purpose is to be used as the explosive in a powerful bomb. After being captured and brought before the group's leader, Picard says his name is Mot, and he is the ship's barber. He manages to cause an emergency in engineering which results in the isolation doors closing allowing him to escape. He then engages in a ruthless game of cat-and-mouse with little more than a crossbow and his wits against the team of mercenaries. Picard takes no prisoners, as he either kills, or allows the demise of, every single mercenary. Russ taunts Picard by saying, "You're Starfleet. You won't kill me." Picard manages to anesthetize him. Later, Picard lets the mercenary die from the baryon sweep.
Data provides comic relief in the opening scenes as he learns small talk tips from the smarmy and garrulous Commander Hutchinson (
David Spielberg). The two excitedly trade trivialities throughout the cocktail party ("...how long can two people talk about nothing," exclaims an exasperated Riker).
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