Mostly, when I revisit an episode of TNG, I’m like “I must have seen this at some point…how could I have forgotten [crazy thing that happens to the crew]?” This episode, “Justice,” I most definitely remembered a key plot point of – Wesley falling into a bed of flowers and consequently being sentenced to death – but there is far more I didn’t remember:
- that the planet they are on is similar in its mores to the planet Picard visits when he is on holiday (meaning…they have a lot of sex, all the time)
- that there is a weird spaceship messing with the Enterprise
- that the people on this planet consider the weird spaceship to be God
- that the people on this planet dress like they are currently in, or about to be in, a sauna and/or sexy cult ritual
This is one of the very first shots of the episode:
“We run everywhere so we always have paper-towel-bikini-ready bodies”
The people on this planet are all pretty foxy, in an 80s way, and don’t mind showing it off, but what little they do wear is creepily uniform, like they are all backup dancers in the Bounty® Paper Towel Burlesque Extravaganza, which then actually turns out to be a brainwashing seminar. Also, their main mode of transport is running. I can’t really find too much fault with this. I mean, look at them. Running makes you sexy, I guess.
Some of the crew has already been on the planet, and the Edo (which is the race of people that live here) are all too happy to welcome them back:
“Our identical haircuts are giving me a huge boner”
They don’t French as a greeting or anything, but they do give the kind of lingering hug you get from the guy in your improv class whom you suspect works at the natural foods store, or the weird dude in youth group who insists he “wants to be friends…in the Lord” but then later turns out to be either a serial killer or an infomercial pitchman. You know the type. Yar is into it, but Worf is skeptical:
“Hugging makes me more nervous than battling”
Later on, this exchange happens:
Worf: I am not concerned with pleasure, Commander, I am a warrior.
Riker: Even Klingons need love now and then.
Worf: For what we would consider love, sir, I would need a Klingon woman.
Riker: What about plain old basic sex? You must have some need for that.
Worf: Of course, but with the females available to me, sir – Earth females – I must restrain myself too much. They are quite fragile, sir.
Riker: Worf, if anyone else had said that I’d suspect he was bragging.
Worf: Bragging, sir?
Worf cannot be held responsible for the AWESOME POWER of his Klingon manhood. I’ll just say this: I’d hit it.
Okay, so we have these two ambassadors to the sexy paper towel race, Rivan (the lady) and Liator (the man). They are both very blond and very bland and very…fit, as Troi puts it earlier in the episode:
“Do you even need to ask if the carpets match the drapes? You can probably just see for yourself when there’s a gust of wind”
She is giving me some serious young Charlize Theron, if Charlize had worked exclusively on Lifetime Original Movies and worn terrible wigs. He has almost certainly played Rolf in a community theater production of The Sound of Music. And both of them have RAD outfits:
“We can’t play shirts and skins, just straps and skins”
Those shorts are DANGEROUS, y’all! Especially when you’re running everywhere! I don’t know if you know this, Edo people, but you have wobbly bits that cannot be restrained by a twist of muslin and a flap. I mean, check out Liator here:
“Edo sandwich on Starfleet bread what whaaaaaaaaat”
Look, Liator, I know that the sheer sensuality of just standing between Yar and Troi is almost too much for anyone to handle, but tend to your shorts, man.
And it’s like that with everyone: their outfits defy the laws of time and space:
What is that side strap even doing?
Seriously, guys, why even bother with pants at this point?
What kind of space-age polymer is holding up your tops? HOW IS THAT EVEN WORKING??
Even the children on this planet are subjected to the same Ibiza dance party clothing standards:
“Let’s be friends, Wesley…maybe you can lose your v-card before we threaten you with execution!”
I don’t know what’s worse, the adult women’s physically impossible scraps of fabric cover-ups, or this poor little girl’s severely unflattering bermuda shorts onesie. It looks like something I would have sold for $5 at the Lands’ End Not Quite Perfect Store when I worked there in college.* And what possible reason could there be for Kid on the Right to have such a deep V in his shorts? Though you know Dov Charney probably saw this picture and was like “YES. INSPIRATION.” And then he put those shorts on a dude with a handlebar mustache and called it a day by partying with some underage-looking Asian girls.
Also, I just really like that this is occurring:
“I used Crisco on your legs and also in my bangs”
You can see his whole flank! What part is flanks, on a human?
But I think the best demonstration of the ridiculousness of these outfits is when Rivan goes up to the Enterprise (ummmm violation of the Prime Directive, anyone? ANYONE?) to sort out what is going on with the “God” spaceship:
She looks like a Swedish bikini team girl who wandered into a futuristic office park. You know Troi is pissed she’s not the eye candy for once, though.
In the end, Picard decides to save Wesley from getting executed, even though it’s in violation of the Prime Directive, even though this whole episode seems like it might be a violation of the Prime Directive. (Nerd debate time!) But I think what we really got out of this ep was that running makes you sexy, and Klingon sex is really intense. And that with enough space-age polymers, any scrap of fabric you have laying around can be an entire outfit.
*yes, that was my real job