Season 2 of Star Trek: The Next Generation was released on Blu-ray yesterday and the set includes an extended version of "Measure of a Man," one of Trek’s most memorable episodes. In a new interview Sir Patrick Stewart talks about how that is one of the few early TNG episodes he can even remember. He also talks about show’s attempts at romance with Picard. Excerpts below.
Stewart on Forgetting Most of S1 & S2, Measure of A Man & Sexy Picard
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Sir Patrick Stewart talks about why "Measure of o Man" is one his few memorable early TNG episodes…
Many fans of Star Trek: The Next Generation consider this episode to be the first truly great episode of the series. Is that a perspective that you share?
I would say that it is. It is a title that always comes up when the fans or critics or academics even, talk about the highlights of every season. That is always there.
You know, I don’t remember much about the first season. I remember the pilot episode and can’t watch it because I was so terrified all the time of messing it up or getting fired. I think we had several quite weak episodes in the first season. I can think of one very early on that involved a race of black aliens that we all felt quite embarrassed about. I think there must have been others in the first season that dealt with stronger, society based issues, there must have been. But ["The Measure of a Man"] was a complex situation, and one that required intelligent reasoning and argument. Both sides had cogent reasons for believing what they did.
Amanda McBroom and Patrick Stewart in "Measure of a Man"
The former Jean Luc also talked about a cut scene and how the show treated his ‘sexiness.’
The character of the judge advocate was named Phillipa Louvois, played by Amanda McBroom, and there’s a clear tension between her and Picard. In the extended edition, they put back a scene where she calls Picard sexy. It’s startling, since in those early seasons Picard did not have much of a romantic life other than his affection for Crusher, but then in season 2, Crusher wasn’t there anymore.
Oh yeah, you can say that again. I kept encountering women whom I have known in the past, and they were all about the wistful recollection of what might have been if things turned out differently. Gene always said that Picard is in love with the Enterprise. The Enterprise is his family.
The actress who played her was that wonderful singer, jazz singer, Amanda McBroom. The last time I saw her, she was singing in the Rainbow Room at Rockefeller. And she wrote the song that Bette Midler made so famous – “The Rose.” I remember there was a lot of excitement on the set when she came on board. She was tall and slender and dark haired. Had her hair pulled back, I recall. And yes there was some suggestion as in all these episodes [with Picard and another woman] at that time that there had been something in their past — and I began to find that increasingly tiresome. [Laughter]
Read the full interview for more from Sir Pat at EW.com.
Get your copy of TNG S2 Blu-ray from Amazon discounted to $64.99.