ST:TNG Treadmill Review #46: The Loss

The Loss
Season 4 Episode 10
Original airdate: December 29, 1990

Netflix Synopsis

While the Enterprise struggles to contend with a mysterious life-form, Troi inexplicably loses her empathetic powers.

My Brief Review

“Empathetic”? Well, whatever. This is not a great episode. I have never really enjoyed episodes that explore Troi’s empathic powers. I’ve never found the idea of the empathic powers compelling, and the way Troi is written as a character is often not great. I do not blame Marina Sirtis for this. It’s the writers and producers. She was not given a lot to work with.

The idea of the two-dimensional beings drawn to the cosmic string fragment like moths to a flame is kind of interesting, and was very timely with the ongoing development of string theory at the time of the episode. I guess the past couple of decades’ failure of string theory to prove at all viable kind of sours me on this. (I was a big reader of popular writing about theoretical physics by the likes of Brian Greene and Michio Kaku in the ’90s.)

On top of what was already a bit of a throwaway episode (aired between Christmas and New Year’s when people were probably less likely to be watching anyway), this also proves to be the first episode in the entire season that isn’t about family in some way.

Memorable Moment

Honestly… not much? Troi comparing the beings to moths being drawn to a flame, I guess. This episode’s details are especially unmemorable, considering that I had actually just seen this one randomly on TV within the last year or so. I remembered that I had seen it, but very few of the details came back to me until moments before they were going to happen.

Crew Rando

OK, we get a serious crew rando this time around. Yes, Ensign Allenby is still at the helm, but we are treated to several scenes featuring Ensign Brooks, whose presence on the ship seems only to be relevant when we need to see Deanna Troi doing her job as ship’s counselor. (Which, strangely, she never normally has to make time for. She’s always on the bridge, and now suddenly she’s seeing patients?)

Distance Rating: 2K

IMDb score: 6.0/10