TNG: S4, E21: The Drumhead: An investigation into the possibility of sabotage onboard the Enterprise turns into an Admiral’s personal Romulan witch hunt.
Retired Starfleet Admiral, Norah Satie is assigned to investigate the notion that sabotage onboard the Enterprise led to an explosion in Engineering. Admiral Satie is so determined to get to the bottom of the suspected conspiracy that an innocent man’s career is ruined because he lied on his Starfleet application, stating his paternal grandfather’s species as being Vulcan, when in fact, he was actually Romulan. In fact, her xenophobic witch hunt goes so far as to accuse Captain Picard of treason. Picard turns her own father’s words on her during his hearing that she loses all composure and is finally seen for who she is in front of Admiral Thomas Henry of Starfleet Security.
For as interesting as this episode is, it’s also sad to see how hateful people can become. While we never knew Admiral Satie earlier on in her career, I’m sure we all know of well respected people who have been torn down due to their own personal prejudices. Picard shows that he’s the most level-headed of the bunch as he keeps an unprejudiced eye on everything going on onboard his ship. A great episode, nonetheless.
Star Trek has various series that are littered with a great number of episodes involving trials or hearings. Here are a few others worth mentioning:
- TNG: S4, E13: Devil’s Due
- DS9: S1, E8: Dax
- DS9: S4, E18: Rules of Engagement
- VOY: S3, E23: Distant Origin
- SNW: S2: E2: Ad Astra per Aspera
And of course, the entire TNG series can be considered a trial by Q, in which Captain Picard and the crew of the Enterprise prove that humanity is ready to be a part of the galactic community.