I’d seen this episode a while back, but never taken screenshots of it until friend of the blog Deborah re-alerted me about it. The basic plot is that Data creates an android child for himself, and the anticipated shenanigans ensue. It starts with a seriously Sorkiny walk-and-talk through the halls of the Enterprise:
Law and Order: Gamma Quadrant
Geordi and Troi are wearing things we’ve seen before (let’s all be reminded of Deanna’s dress-over-pants, though), but Wesley is rocking a thankfully unstriped ensign’s uniform, rather than one of those hideous sweaters. However, the tradeoff is that instead of searing our retinas with sweater rays, we are treated to the delightful sight of Wes’s junk. You can go up a size, Wes, it’s ok.
It also looks like both Wes and Troi are wearing shoe pants (shants?), with no seam at all between the foot and the leg. I have no actual problem with this concept as long as it looks good (Lenny Kravitz gets a pass because he fine), but in both their cases, it seems unnecessary. Troi doesn’t need pants AT ALL, because she has a dress on, and Wes looks like he’s in figure skater jail.
Anyway, they get where they’re going, which is some lab, and Data is like “look at what I have made”:
The D’Angelo muscles are the most important muscles
Ooh, you went with gold, Data? Cuuuuuuuuuuuuute. Data decides to let Lal, as he’s named his “child,” decide its own appearance, so he starts it out as C-3PO with a bellybutton. Lal and Data go through several thousand options of appearance and narrow it down to four:
Halloween 2011 Trend: Sexy Great Gazoo
This is supposedly an Andorian female, but I like to think it’s the baby of a Buckingham Palace guard and David Bowie, if said baby was promoting a new pistachio ice cream.
As for the human male composite, Troi says “Very attractive. No problem with socialization there.” Troi, this android is NOT EVEN DONE YET and you are already trying to mack on it. Give it a break, damn.
Out of all the hairstyles in the UNIVERSE, you chose this one
The human female option: her bangs are too short and that maxi-dress or jumper or whatever it is looks sort of like it’s on backwards. Please note the color combo here of brick red and khaki (aka My Most Hated Color).
Klingon android = mind explosion
Klingon male option: I have to say that I love this chest piece Klingandroid has on here, especially that belt. Very junkyard chic. “Oh, I just found some old tires and seatbelts and stuff and threw it all together. No bigs. The belt buckle? It’s scrap metal with gumdrops I spray-painted silver, can you believe it! So easy.”
Lal ends up going with the human female, who for some reason changes ONLY SLIGHTLY the color of her jumper thing:
Zooey Deschanel’s Legacy
This actress later went on to play the mom on Lizzie Maguire. This does not explain her lack of eyebrows.
I really think that’s on backwards still
Now her dress is berry and lavender. Maybe the prototype was shown in brick red and khaki so she could pick her own color scheme? It’s better, certainly, but it’s still a maxi jumper.
So Lal is going to get assimilated into the culture of the Enterprise, which isn’t going well:
Nobody puts Data’s baby in the corner
She is technically only like 2 days old, but she looks about 15, so she doesn’t fit in with any of the kids. Plus, her reflexes aren’t so good:
She did not manage to catch that ball
While Data and the others are teaching Lal how to be more human, Picard is dealing with some admiral who is worried about this new android. The admiral calls in the middle of the “night” (I still really wonder about time zones in the Star Trek universe) for no real reason other than to treat us with this:
Haaaayyyyy shorty robe! This has nothing to do with anything, but I certainly could not leave it out.
Data is like “where can Lal learn to be social?” and the obvious answer is in Ten-Forward, under Guinan’s wise tutelage.
Green is my spirit color
I think she might be wearing Uggs.But that’s ok, because guess what, this is her hat:
I love this color scheme. She looks like she’s playing the Jolly Green Giant in a Shakespeare play. Those sleeve pleats!! I hope those pleats are referred to as “Klingon pleats” because they look like Worf’s head.
“Now just awkwardly touch his thigh. Perrrrrrfect”
Lal observes some humans “flirting,” as Guinan explains to her, but the real question here is for the dude: WHAT, WHAT, WHAT are you wearing?!?!
1. He’s crazy 2. He wears pleated pants
Say you’re a low-level officer on the Enterprise. Maybe you work in Engineering in some boring duty, like monitoring dilithium levels all day long. You meet a cute fellow engineer and decide to get to know each other over an Andorian ale in Ten-Forward. The girl on this date is off the hook – she had to come straight from duty and didn’t have time to change. Girl, we’ve all been there. But this guy has made some SERIOUS missteps.
a) that ensemble is the same awful mustard as the regular uniform. Can we mix it up a little, guy?
b) I’m pretty sure that is a mock turtleneck, AKA Worst Neckline in History
c) the pants and shirt are ALMOST the same color, but not quite
d) PLEATED. PANTS. Gentlemen, if you are reading this and you own any pairs of pleated pants, just cut them up into rags right now. No one has ever looked good in pleated pants. Rob Lowe cannot even make them work. Just leave them behind.
After watching the date for a while, Lal notices Riker come into the bar:
Clearly she has mastered the human art of sexy gazing
Then, as Deborah puts it, “because even beings incapable of feeling want to tap that, apparently,” Lal plants a big one on Number One:
Don’t look so surprised, Riker
I continue to be baffled by her Space Amish long skirt.
The admiral who is all concerned about Lal and her upbringing finally just comes on-board the Enterprise to take her away, basically, which Data is none too pleased about:
This gold piping makes everyone take me more seriously
I like the deep faux-V on the admiral’s uniform here, and the fancy-pants cuffs. I do, of course, prefer a jumpsuit in most situations, but he looks nice.
Meanwhile, Lal is continuing her education in Ten-Forward:
Shots, shots, shots, shots, shots
Now this is interesting: before we had a date where the lady was in uniform and the gentleman in the worst monochromatic ensemble ever. This time, the gentleman is in uniform, and the lady dressed to match him. However: she has done it correctly, with a cute minidress and matching tights. I think, really, what it comes down to, is that most dudes (at least the kind that go on dates with girls) do not know how to dress themselves properly. But if they are cute and smart and funny enough, it doesn’t matter that they wear pleated pants. (But you should still get rid of those things, fellas.)
The rest of the episode is sad: the admiral wants to remove Lal, and Lal gets frightened – like, actually, emotionally frightened – and it basically fries her motherboard so bad that they have to shut her down. But before that happens, she says to Data, “I love you, father”:
She’s got your nose, Data
Data replies, “I wish I could feel it with you,” because he’s not advanced enough of an android to actually feel emotions. And Lal says the most heartbreaking thing: “I will feel it for both of us.” It’s actually really sad and sweet and then she gets shut down, still wearing the Amish jumper she wore for her entire short life. At least she didn’t die wearing pleated pants.