Watching through the Star Trek: The Next Generation DVDs, I’ve been getting increasingly apprehensive, because I’ve known that I must be approaching a certain episode. This is an episode that I found incredibly scary when I first saw the show on its first-run airing; I was twelve at the time, and I had nightmares for days afterwards. Yesterday, when I saw the title of “Night Terrors”, I was worried that it might be the episode I remembered, and watched it with a certain amount of trepidation. It turned out not to be, and a bit relieved, tonight I watched the next episode, “Identify Crisis” with my guard down, and hiding behind that innocuous title was the episode I had been dreading. Actually, it turns out it wasn’t that scary this time around. Ironically, I found “Night Terrors” far more frightening.
I’ve noticed that the episodes have a tendency to come in groups; these are things you notice watching them back to back that are harder to spot when there are weeks or months between them. Two horror episodes in a row, for example. Earlier in season four, I noticed two episodes in a row that introduced significant elements to the Star Trek universe: “Data’s Day”, which introduced us to Keiko and Spot (who had both apparently been on the ship for some time, although we never saw them), followed by “The Wounded”, where we first met the Cardassians (who had been at war with the Federation for years, but somehow managed to avoid ever having been mentioned before).
I have also been meaning to mention what is, so far, my favorite DVD of the series: Season Three Disc Four. “Deja Q,” “A Matter of Perspective,” “Yesterday’s Enterprise” and “The Offspring.” It doesn’t get much better than that.