ST:TNG Treadmill Review #33: Tin Man

Tin Man
Season 3 Episode 20
Original airdate: April 21, 1990

Netflix Synopsis

A former patient of Troi’s arrives to help the Enterprise establish contact with an unusual alien ship before the Romulans can reach it.

My Brief Review

Another synopsis that threw me off the trail. I remember this episode very well. But this description does not evoke it for me.

Tam Elbrun is a Betazoid with extreme telepathic powers. So powerful, in fact, that he is sent on special missions by the Federation to make first contact with extremely non-humanoid species. But that same skill makes it unbearable for him to be around humanoid species, where he can hear every thought around him at all times.

An alien ship — literally… an alien that is a spaceship — is orbiting a star that’s about to go supernova. Tam’s mission is to make contact with it and get it to leave the star, which happens to be in space claimed by the Romulans.

Of course the Romulans want to kill the ship — “Tin Man,” although its real name is Gomtuu — assuming they can’t capture it. But Tam has a more important mission: to join with Gomtuu. To give it a purpose again, thousands of years after its symbiotic crew had been killed, and to save himself from the voices.

Memorable Moment(s)

There are three images from this episode that have stayed with me over the past 3 decades: First, the moment when Tam telepathically warns Gomtuu about the Romulans’ hostile intent, and Gomtuu responds by flaring up and spinning, sending an electromagnetic shockwave that destroys the closest Romulan ship and knocks out most of the systems on the Enterprise. Second, the moment when Tam and Data are aboard Gomtuu and Tam makes contact — literally pressing his hand into the fleshy wall of the corridor they’re standing in. And finally, when Gomtuu forms a chair out of… itself… for Tam to sit in on its bridge.

Crew Rando

Russell! Ensign Russell, whom Geordi addresses by name, not once, not twice, but thrice!

Distance Rating: 5K

IMDb score: 7.3/10