Star Trek is more popular than ever these days, thanks to J.J. Abrams' hit Star Trek movies, with Star Trek Beyond set to hit theaters next year. While the original Star Trek series only lasted three seasons, the 1980s spinoff Star Trek: The Next Generation took the franchise to new heights, running for seven seasons over 176 episodes, between 1987 and 1994. That show's star, Patrick Stewart, who brought Captain Jean-Luc Picard to life, recently held a Reddit AMA session to promote his Starz series Blunt Talk, where he was asked what his favorite Star Trek episode is. Here's what the actor had to say.
"My favorite episode is "Inner Light". It was a beautiful script, which for me was almost entirely located away from the Enterprise-and it's crew! And because I was given the chance to perform what Picard would have been like if his life experience had been different. But another important reason is that I had a son in that episode who was played by my son, Daniel Stewart."
The episode in question was written by Morgan Gendel and Peter Allan Fields, where Picard awakes to find himself living in a small village on a non-Federation planet named Kataan. He is a well-known member of the community named Kamin, who is suffering from a delusion of being a starship captain. Whenever Picard talks about his time on the Enterprise, others in the town think he is just suffering ill effects from a raging fever he is trying to recover from. Kamin ends up living out his entire life on Kataan, with scenes of Picard's crew trying to wake him up spliced in throughout the episode.
The episode was quite a departure from the show's normal sci-fi format, serving as the second-to-last episode of Season 4. "Inner Light" is often cited as one of the TV series' best, with another series star, Wil Wheaton, also recently revealed it was his favorite episode as well. "Inner Light" went on to win a Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation not too long after it aired.
After the show's run, Patrick Stewart went on to reprise his iconic Picard role in the feature films Star Trek: Generations (1994), Star Trek: First Contact (1996), Star Trek: Insurrection (1998) and Star Trek: Nemesis. Do you agree with Patrick Stewart's choice for favorite Star Trek: The Next Generation episode?