We’re celebrating John de Lancie on his birthday by suggesting three Q-centric Star Trek eps.
It’s John de Lancie’s birthday today. The veteran actor has been well known to fans of Star Trek for nearly 40 years, debuting in the pilot episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. That episode was called “Encounter at Farpoint” and would set the tone of what fans could expect from the series and the character Q for years to come.
Q and de Lancie were not isolated to just one episode but in fact the entire Star Trek canon at times. While Q and his rivalry with Jean-Luc Picard was his most noteworthy set of moments in the franchise, he’s also popped up on Voyager, Deep Space Nine, and even Lower Decks.
Yet, if you had to ask me what three episodes of Star Trek I would recommend watching to get your Q fix? Well, these are my three picks.
Three of the best Q episodes in Star Trek history
“Q Who” – Season 2, Episode 16 of The Next Generation
While “Encounter at Farpoint” was the first episode of Q’s existence in Star Trek, it was “Q Who” that showed the depth of the character. On one level, Q is being his arrogant and egotistical self, throwing the Enterprise in the way of an oncoming Borg vessel thousands of lightyears away. This is the ambiguity of Q. While some believe Q was trying to teach Picard a lesson about not being ready for what’s to come, to me it always felt like Q was warning Picard and humanity of their greatest threat; the Borg.
“Death Wish” – Season 2, Episode 18 of Voyager
When a member of the Q-Continuum arrives on Voyager, Q arrives to bring him back. The new Q, named Quinn, because of course, wants to end his life. It’s a thought that Q and the rest of the Continuum steadfastly are against, yet Q makes Kathryne Janeway the arbitrator of the debate. It has one of the more poignant endings in Voyager and shows a side of Q that fans rarely got to see.
“The Q and the Grey” – Season 3, Episode 11 of Voyager
The events of Death Wish single-handily set up The Q and the Grey, so I’ll truncate the plot; Q did Q things, pissed off the Continuum, and started a civil war. It’s worth watching, but any more details would ruin the experiences of Death Wish and the Q and the Grey for first-time viewers. So be sure to watch them in order.