Star Trek The Next Generation When The Bough Breaks

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When The Bough Breaks (1988)

**When the Bough Breaks: A Star Trek: The Next Generation Classic**

I remember the first time I saw “When the Bough Breaks.” I was a kid, and I was hooked from the opening scene. The episode’s gripping premise, thought-provoking themes, and emotional depth have stayed with me ever since.

In this episode, Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise are tasked with transporting a pregnant Lwaxana Troi to her home planet for the birth of her child. However, during the journey, Troi’s unborn child begins to exhibit unusual abilities, including telepathy and telekinesis. The crew soon realizes that the child is a Q, an omnipotent and mischievous race that has been known to cause trouble for the Federation.

**The Dangers of Uncontrolled Power**

One of the central themes of “When the Bough Breaks” is the dangers of uncontrolled power. The Q child, with its vast abilities, poses a threat to the Enterprise and everyone on board. Picard and the crew must struggle to find a way to contain the child’s powers without harming it.

This theme is particularly relevant in today’s world, where we are constantly confronted with the potential for both good and evil in the use of technology. Social media, artificial intelligence, and genetic engineering are all powerful tools that can be used for great benefit or terrible harm. It is important to remember that with great power comes great responsibility.

**The Challenges of Parenthood**

“When the Bough Breaks” also explores the challenges of parenthood. Troi and her husband, Deanna Troi, must learn to deal with the unexpected and often overwhelming abilities of their child. They must find a way to balance their love for their son with the need to protect others from his powers.

This theme is one that can resonate with any parent. Children can be a source of great joy, but they can also be a handful. Parents must learn to navigate the challenges of raising their children while still allowing them to develop their own unique personalities.

**Star Trek: The Next Generation’s Legacy**

Star Trek: The Next Generation was a groundbreaking television series that explored many important social and ethical issues. “When the Bough Breaks” is a perfect example of this. The episode deals with complex and timely issues in a thought-provoking and engaging way.

The legacy of Star Trek: The Next Generation is one of inclusivity, diversity, and social justice. The show has inspired generations of fans to think critically about the world around them and to strive for a better future.

**Tips for Watching “When the Bough Breaks”**

If you’ve never seen “When the Bough Breaks,” I highly recommend checking it out. Here are a few tips to make the experience even more enjoyable:

  • Watch the episode in its original播出. The special effects may seem dated by today’s standards, but they were groundbreaking at the time.
  • Pay attention to the character development. The episode does an excellent job of developing both Troi’s character and the character of Q.
  • Be prepared to be challenged. “When the Bough Breaks” is not just a fun adventure story. It also raises important questions about the nature of power and the responsibilities of parenthood.

**Frequently Asked Questions about “When the Bough Breaks”**

Q: What is the significance of the title “When the Bough Breaks”?

A: The title refers to a proverb that means “when the weight becomes too great.” In this case, the “bough” is the Enterprise, and the “break” is the threat posed by the Q child.

Q: What is the nature of the relationship between Troi and Q?

A: Troi and Q have a complex and often adversarial relationship. However, they also share a deep respect for each other. Q sees Troi as a worthy opponent, and Troi sees Q as a force for chaos that must be contained.

Q: What is the ultimate fate of the Q child?

A: The Q child is ultimately returned to the Q Continuum, where it is raised by Q and his fellow Qs. However, the child’s time on the Enterprise has a profound impact on Q. He learns to appreciate the value of compassion and empathy, and he becomes a more responsible member of the Continuum.


“When the Bough Breaks” is a classic Star Trek: The Next Generation episode that explores important social and ethical issues. The episode is a reminder of the dangers of uncontrolled power and the challenges of parenthood. It is also a testament to the enduring legacy of Star Trek, a television series that has inspired generations of fans to think critically about the world around them.

Are you a fan of Star Trek: The Next Generation? What did you think of “When the Bough Breaks”?

Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987)

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