Saturday, 10 June 2017

Captain Picard's Finest Moments

If I were asked to pick my best Picard moments, these would be some of them. (I'm definitely going to have to add to this list as I remember more episodes.)

Captain Picard -- Role model for this generation and the next

s01e01 (Encounter at Farpoint):

Standing up for humanity

Q: Soldiers, you will press those triggers if this criminal answers with any word other than guilty. Criminal, how plead you?
Picard: Guilty...Provisionally.
Q: The court will hear the provision.


As Riker is about to learn, Picard always values honest feedback over acquiescence

Riker: Permission to speak candidly, sir?
Picard: Always.

Honesty and authenticity

Riker: What do we do, if they're monitoring our every move and word?
Picard: We do exactly what we would if this Q never existed. If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are.

s01e19 (Coming of Age):

Wesley: I failed, Captain. I didn't get into the Academy. I failed you and I failed the Enterprise. 
Picard: Ridiculous. Did you do your best? 
Wesley: Yes. 
Picard: When you test next year, and you will test next year, do you think your performance will improve? 
Wesley: Yes. 
Picard: Good. The only person you're truly competing against, Wesley, is yourself. 
Wesley: Then you're not disappointed? 
Picard: Wesley, you have to measure your successes and your failures within, not by anything I or anyone else might think. But, if it helps you to know this, I failed the first time. And you may not tell anyone!

"I failed the first time. And you may not tell anyone!"

s02e09 (The Measure of a Man):

Picard: A single Data - and forgive me, Commander - is a curiosity. A wonder, even. But thousands of Datas...Isn't that becoming.....a race? And won't we be judged by how we treat that race? Now tell me, Commander, what is Data?
Maddox: I don't understand.
Picard: What is he?
Maddox: A machine.
Picard: Are you sure?
Maddox: Yes.
Picard: He met two criteria for sentience. What if he met the third? Consciousness. What is he then? I don't know. Do you? That's the question you have to answer. A courtroom is a crucible where we burn away irrelevancies until we are left with a pure product, truth, for all time. Sooner or later, this man or others like him will succeed in replicating Cmdr Data. The decision you reach today will determine how we will regard this..creation of our genius. It will reveal what people are, what he is destined to be. It will reach beyond this courtroom and this one android. It could redefine the boundaries of personal liberty and freedom, expanding them for some, savagely curtailing them for others. Are you prepared to condemn him and all who come after to slavery? (To Judge Luvois) Your Honour, Starfleet was founded to seek out new life. Well, there it sits! Waiting. You wanted a chance to make law. Here it is. Make it a good one.

"Starfleet was founded to seek out new life. Well, there it sits!"

s03e16 (The Offspring):

Admiral Haftel: Then I regret that I must order you to transport Lal aboard my ship.
Picard: Belay that order, Mr. Data.
Haftel: I beg your pardon?
Picard: I will take this to Starfleet myself.
Haftel: I am Starfleet, Captain! Proceed, Commander.
Picard: Hold your ground, Mr. Data.
Haftel: You are jeopardizing your command and your career.
Picard: There are times, sir, when men of good conscience cannot blindly follow orders. You acknowledge their sentience, but you ignore their personal liberties and freedom. Order a man to hand his child over to the State? Not while I'm his captain.

"Order a man to hand his child over to the State? Not while I'm his captain."

s04e21 (The Drumhead):

Where he makes his civil rights speech, one of his most famous

Admiral Norah Satie: I question your actions, Captain. I question your choices. I question your loyalty.
Picard: You know, there are some words I've known since I was a schoolboy.
"With the first link, the chain is forged. The first speech censored, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably."
Those words were uttered by Judge Aaron Satie as wisdom and warning. The first time any man's freedom is trodden on, we're all damaged.

[...]

Worf: Admiral Satie has left the Enterprise. 
Picard: We think we've come so far. The torture of heretics, the burning of witches, it's all ancient history. Then, before you can blink an eye, it suddenly threatens to start all over again. 
Worf: I believed her. I helped her. I did not see what she was. 
Picard: Mister Worf, villains who twirl their moustaches are easy to spot. Those who clothe themselves in good deeds are well camouflaged. 
Worf: I think after yesterday, people will not be as ready to trust her. 
Picard: Maybe. But she, or someone like her, will always be with us, waiting for the right climate in which to flourish, spreading fear in the name of righteousness. Vigilance, Mister Worf, that is the price we have to continually pay.

s05e03 (Ensign Ro):


Picard's indulgence of the maverick Ro Laren shows his supportive and nurturing side

Picard: You've got a great deal to learn from Starfleet.
Ro Laren: I always thought Starfleet had a lot to learn from me.
Picard: That's an attitude that I've found common among the best officers I've ever served with. You're not one of them yet, but you could be, if you work at it.
Ro: That's an interesting challenge. I rarely refuse an interesting challenge. There would have to be one condition.
Picard: Condition?
Ro gestures towards her earring, that she should be allowed to wear it in violation of Starfleet dress regulations.
Picard (with a smile): Two to beam up.

s05e21 (The Perfect Mate):

Stoic in the face of personal tragedy

Kamala: I will never truly love him. 
Picard: You've not even met him. 
Kamala: It no longer matters. I wish I could convey to you what it's like to be a metamorph. To feel the inner strength of someone. To realise that being with him is opening your mind and heart to endless new possibilities. To hear yourself say, I like myself when I'm with him. 
Picard: Kamala. 
Kamala: For a metamorph there's no greater pleasure and no greater wish than to bond with that kind of mate at the end of the Finiis'ral, as I've bonded with you. 
Picard: With me? 
Kamala: Who I am today, I will be forever. 
Data [voiceover]: Data to Captain Picard. 
Picard: Not now, Data. 
Data [voiceover]: But sir, Chancellor Alrik is waiting to receive you in holodeck seven. 
Picard: Acknowledged. (To Kamala) You can't go through with the ceremony. 
Kamala: Would you ask me to stay and ask two armies to keep fighting? Having bonded with you, I've learned the meaning of duty. He'll never know. I'm still empathic. I will be able to please him. I only hope he likes Shakespeare.

[...]

Briam: Your service to both our peoples is greatly appreciated, Captain. 
Picard: Your preparations made the negotiations simple, Ambassador, and Kamala was able to guide me through the rituals. 
Briam: I have to admit, I'm curious. 
Picard: Curious? 
Briam: I was chosen for this mission for a very simple reason. I'm two hundred years old. The temptations of a beautiful metamorph do not easily reach me. And yet I would be lying if I were to claim, that even at my age, they do not reach me at all. But you, you worked with her, side by side for days. How could you resist her? 
Picard: Ambassador, have a safe trip home.

s06e15 (Tapestry):

And he laughs as he is fatally stabbed

Picard: There's still part of me that cannot accept that Q would give me a second chance, or that he'd demonstrate so much compassion. And if it was Q, ..I owe him a debt of gratitude.
Riker: In what sense? He put you through hell.
Picard: There are many parts of my youth that I'm not proud of. There were loose threads. Untidy parts of me that I would like to remove. But when I pulled on one of those threads, ..it unravelled the tapestry of my life.

s06e19 (Lessons):

Unlucky in love, every time

Nella: When communications went out, I knew we had to fend for ourselves. We modified our phasers to create resonant disruptions in the deflector field. The disruptions formed small pockets inside the plane of the field and we each stood inside one to wait out the storm. Richardson didn't make it. All Deng and I could do was stand there and watch. 
Picard: I'm so sorry. 
Nella: Don't. Don't say you're sorry. 
Picard: It must have been terrible. 
Nella: At first, when you told us to hold our positions, I didn't question it. Of course we would. That was our job. But when I saw that storm coming toward us. 
Picard: Part of you must have blamed me. 
Nella: A small part, maybe. But in the end, I was more afraid that you would blame yourself if I died. Would you have? 
Picard: I've lost people under my command. People who were very dear to me. But never someone I've been in love with. And when I believed that you were dead, I just began to shut down. I didn't want to think or feel. I was here in my quarters, and the only thing I could focus on was my music, and how it would never again give me any joy. Then I saw you standing on the transporter pad and I knew that I could never again put your life in jeopardy. 
Nella: If I stayed here, you might have to. 
Picard: You could always resign your commission. Stay here with me. 
Nella: And you could resign yours and come to a starbase with me. I'll apply for a transfer. 
Picard: But we could still see each other. People do. We could arrange shore leave together. And, for the future, who knows? 
Nella: Of course. (kisses Picard) Promise me something? Don't give up your music.

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