[TNG] Season 2, Episode 15 (Netflix: S2 E15): Pen Pals
“Pen Pals” is a particularly strong look at the Prime Directive. There are a couple of interesting aspects to the episode. I like that Data is the driving force behind the “breaking” of the Prime Directive, and I like how Picard reluctantly gives in to Data throughout “Pen Pals”, in a way that displays the risks of making exceptions to the Prime Directive. It’s also a good episode for the relationship between Data and Pulaski, since she’s the most vocal member of the crew to defend what Data is doing.
Read more at Memory Alpha
This episode starts with Deanna watching Picard climb on a horse
They enter into an area of space where there’s crazy seismic stuff goin’ on with the planets.
They put Wesley in charge of a team to figure out what’s happening.
Wesley wants them to do some scans but they don’t want to cause the scans take forever.
Data makes contact with someone on one of the planets. That’s against the prime directive!
Data asks Picard if they can attempt to save his friend’s planet from destruction. That’s against the prime directive too!
They call a meeting to discuss what they should do.
How come Worf isn’t sitting down? Worf says the prime directive is an absolute that they can’t break, never, ever
They go into talking about whether it’s their place to interfere with cosmic fate. Picard asks if they should interfere if a planet was suffering from famine. Pulaski says yes. He then asks if a planet was engaged in a terrible war, and Pulaski hesitates. So what? Those situations are different. She’s the one who argued that they need to consider exceptions.
They decide to help the planet. Data visits his friend
Picard: “He has brought a child onto my ship”
They succeed in stopping the crazy seismic activity on the planet
Then Pulaski erases her memory
Data returns the girl to her planet while she’s knocked out. He also nicked a stone from Pulaski’s desk and leaves it with the girl
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