With an incredible cast made up of actors who continue to be popular today and have even managed to remain friends decades since the show aired, Star Trek: The Next Generation is arguably the best series of the entire Star Trek franchise.
Not only was it spearheaded by the best captain we've seen - who went on to become Professor X of X-Men fame - and therefore wears multiple crowns in the hearts of sci-fi fans, but it also brought a new generation to the Star Trek fandom. The Next Generation opened the world up to new fans of all ages, expanding the universe to pave way for more incredible series and movies.
No, it wasn't as groundbreaking as the original series, which gave us George Takei and Nichelle Nichols, not to mention the entire origins of the universe, but it gave us the hook that Star Trek needed to live and breathe for decades to come, as it continues to do.
The thing is, we tend to gloss over this time period of golden years because we love it so much. The fact is, the series had a lot of problems. From continuity issues to going back and forth between doctors we liked and disliked, Riker's blatant womanizing to plenty of things that just make zero sense at all, we forgive, forget, or ignore many aspects of the series just because it's so good otherwise. And let's not overlook the issue of season 1.
Here are 20 Things Wrong With Star Trek: TNG Everyone Chooses To Ignore.
20 Klingons Aren't As Honorable As They Say
There is so much pomp and circumstance about how honorable Klingons are, so why do we get mostly evidence to the contrary on screen?
Firstly, they suddenly became honorable on The Next Generation when they weren't on the original Star Trek, seemingly for no particular reason.
Then we saw them betray their own race, as with Duras and the Romulans and the entire Klingon Council, which tried to cover it up, and sneaky cloaked war strategies that are glossed over because they help achieve a victory, which is more honorable than anything according to Worf... including fighting honorably, we guess?
19 Why Not Just Use Transporters To Heal Everybody All The Time?
Remember when the transporter just magically healed Dr. Pulaski when she was rapidly aging? It was kind of utter nonsense but really cool at the same time. Why isn't the transporter used to magically heal everybody all the time?
Half of the losses on the show could be prevented with a simple transport.
That said, the transporters can also clone you or even cause you to lose your life altogether, depending on the situation, so maybe they are too temperamental to rely upon when it comes to lives in something as uncertain as space. Still, as advanced as everything is in the series, this seems to be a pretty simple conclusion to reach.
18 La Forge's Visor Is Painful, Except When It Isn't
We feel for Helmsman Geordi La Forge when his visor hurts him. It seems like it causes him great pain in the first season of Star Trek: The Next Generation, but that information is pretty much ignored during every other season.
If there was some miracle cure, we missed it.
There's also the fact that The Next Generation crew have transporters, lasers, and ships flying through space, yet they haven't been able to cure blindness without a visor. That alone doesn't make sense, although we do love that Star Trek: The Next Generation includes people of different abilities in the show.
17 Counselor Troi's Weird Wardrobe
Why does everyone else on the Enterprise have an official Starfleet uniform, yet Counselor Troi sports what's basically a Catwoman costume minus the leather?
The reason for Troi's teal and purple catsuit outfits boils down to the same reason why T'Pol from Enterprise and Seven of Nine from Voyager dressed the way they do: to excite the audience and provide unnecessary eye candy, as if being a female character necessitated being attractive.
While Marina Sirtis definitely an attractive woman, there's not even a cardboard rhyme or reason given for her wardrobe differences from the other characters in The Next Generation.
16 Does Warp Speed Have A Limit Or Not?
We are told that warp speed has a limit - except when it doesn't.
Picard has informed us with a firm certainty that Warp 5 is the enforced speed limit of warp speed to help prevent damage from occurring. Yet it only takes one episode for an admiral to basically say, "Warp speed limit? We don't need no stinking speed limit," and from then on, it's as if the meaningless rule were stated for no reason at all.
By the time we see Warp 10 and beyond in later incarnations of the show, we realize that it really made no sense to begin with. Why even create a rule to break it so quickly?
15 The Holodeck's Rules Are Unclear
The holodeck combines the X-Men's Danger Room with the virtual reality of your dreams, creating one of the most beloved pieces of the Star Trek universe.
Who wouldn't love to spend even five minutes there? Well, we might not, given how random the rules are. People eat food there, so is it real or not? People who exit take a while to reappear, so where are they really going?
What if the holodeck is nothing more than an alternate dimension?
That seems more likely given the events of The Next Generation. It honestly makes no sense unless it's not all a hologram.
14 Why Do Other Species Use Money?
Money and material things have no use in the Final Frontier, which is refreshing to many of us whose lives revolve around robbing Peter to pay Paul. But is that truly the case?
Time and time again we see so many species requiring the use of currency, proving that material items, or at least methods of payment for necessities, still are indeed quite important to many species.
This points to an entire other problem that's not limited to The Next Generation, but can be seen in lots of science fiction, of course, which is the superiority of humans to other species across the universe.
13 The Prime Directive Is Routinely Ignored
Any Star Trek fan can tell you about the Prime Directive. Also known as the Starfleet General Order One, it basically states that Starfleet is not to interfere with the development of other cultures. Obviously this rule gets thrown out the window a lot, not just in The Next Generation but in every Star Trek series and film.
It's usually not done on a whim. Picard, for example, usually broke the Prime Directive when a life was at stake, like Data's pen pal or Wesley Crusher when he faced capital punishment.
If it has to be broken so often, why does it exist in the first place?
Shouldn't it have an amendment?
12 The Alien Worm Conspiracy Was Swept Under The Rug
This entire episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation was even dubbed "Conspiracy". That might prompt viewers to think that the information revealed within the episode could somehow be important, but apparently that wasn't the case.
A parasitic race had used mind control over some Starfleet admirals and while Picard made sure that the person behind the plan was taken out, it was the last we heard of the great conspiracy.
With no reports made by Picard and his crew or further actions taken on the parasites, should we assume that there are still people out there under mind control?
11 Why Does Dr. Pulaski Hate Androids?
Debuting in season 2, Dr. Katherine Pulaski was by far the least favorite chief medical officer of fans in Star Trek: The Next Generation, but her own hatred for androids was partly to blame.
She is openly repulsed by androids, but we are never given a real explanation as to why.
It was obvious that she was meant to pay homage to the original Star Trek chief medical officer, Leonard "Bones" McCoy, but given that Data was treated as an equal by everyone else in the crew, her unexplained prejudice against him made her much harder to like than McCoy.
10 The First Two Seasons Don't Apply To The Rest Of The Show
There's really only one thing that continues throughout Star Trek: The Next Generation following the first two seasons, which is the fact that Tasha Yar existed, which is mainly to fuel Data's weird obsession.
It's almost as if the first two seasons were nothing but back-to-back pilot episodes.
That's not to say that there was zero continuity at all, because there were plenty of continuous plots and recurring characters. However, once The Next Generation really hit its stride, it really acted as if the first two seasons were nothing but an alien-afflicted dream that one of the characters had.
9 Wesley Gets A Bridge Appointment Without Ever Enlisting In Starfleet
Yes, Wesley Crusher is a child prodigy who possesses unique intellect, abilities and a tedency to drive fans crazy. But that doesn't mean that he should get an appointment on the Enterprise Bridge without having ever enlisted into Starfleet.
This makes him even more privileged than Captain Kirk, which is just weird.
Why did young Crusher get such privileges that no one else seems to have ever been able to obtain without at least some time spent in the Starfleet Academy? No matter how sweet Doctor Crusher and Captain Picard are on one another, that's never been an excuse before.
8 Troi's Emphatic Abilities Are Too Random
We get it. Deanna Troi is only half-betazoid, so she's kind of like a permanent Padawan when it comes to her empathic abilities. But the complete randomness regarding when they work, when they fail, and how often that failure happens to be convenient for the plot is a little much for us to handle.
She is essentially supposed to be a human lie detector, which makes her character much harder to write whenever the trustworthiness of a foe is necessary for the success of an episode's plot.
The premise of her powers seems cool and narratively convenient, but it seems the writers didn't really think this one through.
7 Data Actually Has Emotions
Every time someone on Star Trek: The Next Generation says that Data can't feel, we all get that little nudge in the back of our brains that whispers, "Oh, please."
Of course Data can feel!
It's evident time and time again that the android has various capacities for care and even expresses sentimentality like only humans seem to be able to do.
The fact that he's an android shouldn't really matter when it comes to feelings given their adaptability. Isn't the ability to feel and adapt to human behavior what makes us fear the current robots that are being developed today?
6 Hybrid Species Make No Sense
While Star Trek: The Next Generation is obviously futuristic and takes a lot of creative liberties with medical advancements, the fact remains that inter-species breeding is not only quite rare but also only possible with species that are very close to one another in biology, such as tigers and lions.
While modern man carries a tiny bit of Neanderthal DNA because of this phenomenon, there's really no way that so many inter-species creatures could make up so much of the The Next Generation universe, or those of the rest of the Star Trek series, given how different each species should theoretically be.
5 Why Are Little Kids Even Allowed On The Enterprise?
From day one, we can see plainly how dangerous it is to be on the Enterprise. Everyone's lives are threatened on a regular basis from episode one onward, so why on earth would families want to board and remain on the ship?
Some fans have compared the Enterprise to a military base where wives, husbands and children can remain together, but that's not meant for combat scenarios.
The first time everyone's lives were threatened, Picard should have said, "That's it, I'm turning this car around," and taken kids and their caregivers home - or at the very least to a safe port.
4 The Universal Translator Isn't Quite Universal
If something doesn't work across the board, it's not really universal, is it? The universal translator has failed many times, leading to preventable conflicts based on a simple lack of understanding.
If there's anything that the world of Star Trek: The Next Generation should have already have ironed out, it's basic communication across the board, particularly with beings they come across on a regular basis.
Given how many of us use a quick computer translator on a daily basis, not to mention how many people are employed to translate, it seems like a pretty primitive problem.
3 Aliens Look Too Much Like Humans
Sure, there are budget constraints to think about, but Star Trek has the same problem that Supernatural has: the aliens (and monsters) look all too human.
As cool as that can be sometimes, it is also disappointing because we want to see all kinds of cool new life forms we've never heard about. Not to mention, it seems highly unlikely.
In a vast universe teeming with alien lifeforms, it makes much more sense for there to be more non-humanoid beings than beings who resemble us.
In terms of evolution, humans are often considered a glitch anyway, so why not have more dinosaur-like creatures? Again, we call budget on this one.
2 All Of The Admirals Are Psycho
When a character is announced as an admiral of Starfleet on Star Trek, we already know one of two things: either they are going to go nuts, or they are already as evil as they come. It's like such regular clockwork that it's become as trope-worthy as the red shirt.
From Pressman to Dougherty, Leyton to Marcus, most of the admirals throughout Star Trek's long history have been pretty shifty characters.
For The Next Generation in particular, it was Norah Satie who maniacally chased after Captain Picard and his crew. She kept with the tradition of crazy admirals, and we all just let it be.
1 Captain Picard Is French, Not English
Yes, the accent is dreamy and it makes Sir Patrick Stewart who he is, but there's no denying that Jean-Luc Picard is very, very French in The Next Generation's canon.
He's quite proud of his French heritage and it's mentioned pretty often, even to the point where he speaks the language, yet he has a distinctive British accent. Fans know that Stewart did attempt an accent, but he admitted it wasn't a very good one.
We all ignore this point because Stewart already has one of the most melodic voices in the entire world and Picard is the best captain ever.
What else does everyone ignore about Star Trek: The Next Generation? Let us know in the comments
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