Tuesday, 13 October 2015

30 Days of Trek - Day Thirteen


Welcome friends to our thirteenth challenge and today we're celebrating #bevcrusherday!

October 13th is Gates McFadden's birthday and in appreciation of the under-appreciated Chief Medical Officer of the USS Enterprise-D and E, I'm backing Tekla Vassie's campaign to bring more attention to Beverly Crusher.

Back in the day I didn't really spare much time for Doctor Crusher but years later I find she's actually a damn fine character and a great actress who was, as said, very, very underused and pretty poorly treated in the first season which led to her conspicuous absence in season two. It did mean she nabbed a role in The Hunt for Red October but sadly most of her stuff didn't make the final cut.

So first of all, happy birthday Gates! All the best from Some Kind of Star Trek and as part of the #30daysoftrek challenge, I'm asking for your favourite Beverly Crusher moment - or Gates McFadden moment. That could be a line, a scene or even an episode (sadly not that many to choose from). 

Now I am actually going to go for an oddball one as favourite moment and choose  Descent and the doctor's chance to take command of the Enterprise even if it was with a skeleton crew. While the bulk of the ship's personnel were planet-side, Doctor Crusher managed to see off the irregular-shaped Type Three Borg vessel and still get back in perfect time to help with the clean up. It showed the doctor to be a more than capable bridge officer and that she could - and should - have been given some stronger stories to deal with. It was referenced again when Troi took the bridge officer's test in Thine Own Self so we know it wasn't a fleeting shot. 

Even in First Contact, a bridge-locked Crusher is more than comfortable taking charge when Jean-Luc has his Moby Dick moment. Gates did get Remember Me which should receive high praise since that is THE Bev Crusher episode and in All Good Things... that chance to be a fully-fledged captain did come about at least in one potential future.

As I was thinking about this I did consider the "Dancing Doctor" scene from Data's Day for both comedy gold and for Gates to demonstrate some of her footwork skills but Descent just won out for me since it expanded the character in a new direction. I could have covered appearances in The Big Goodbye, Suspicions and Attached but I'm sure there will be one or two of those mentioned in more detail. By the way Jean-Luc there's also something she's been meaning to tell you...

Another landmark for Gates within the Star Trek fold has to be her opportunity to direct Genesis in the final season. Still the only episode to ever make me physically jump it might have a plot that is somewhat unbelievable but I think it's so off-the-wall it's thoroughly enjoyable. Riker as a caveman, Troi as a fish, Barclay as a spider and Worf as a Klingon killing machine are images you don't forget! I know it gets a lot of hate because it is so bizarre but Gates still directed what was probably a very technical episode more than adequately. Plus there's a really cool 2001: A Space Odyssey homage in there which just adds a little something else to the effect.

So what's your favourite Bev or Gates moment in the world of Star Trek

Follow 30 Days of Trek and join in with the daily challenge across the SKoST social media platforms! I'll be back at 1pm TOMORROW with the fourteenth question!

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