“Monsters” is good TV, but it drags the momentum of the entire season arch to a halt

When picard is hit by a Tesla, Tallin has to go into his brain with magical technology to find the trauma that is keeping him unconscious.  It’s classic Star Trek that explores the inner workings of Picard’s psyche.  It’s well written, superbly acted, and a horrible anchor on the season that shouldn’t have happened.

It is the curse of arch-driven storytelling that momentum must be given to the overall narrative and we’re just not seeing that right now.  After a season with such a strong start, it is literally screeching to a halt or, in the best case scenario, slowing to a crawl too many frustrating times and abandoning it’s own narrative.  You can be episodic or you can be arch driven… you can’t be both!

And it stinks because everything that had to do with Picard’s mind trip was excellent television that I thoroughly enjoyed.  It was when we joined the others on their side quests (which should be the main quest) we were reminded of the stakes we’ve pushed to the wayside.  Perhaps if there was no focus other than Picard this week, I wouldn’t have minded, but all I could think about is how much more attention the crew should be paying to a gosh-damned Borg Queen on the loose in 2024 Los Angeles!

And can we please talk about Rios and the forehead slappingly awful judgement he showed in this episode by bringing Theresa and her kid on board the La Sirena?  WHY?  I know it’s not his head doing his thinking right now, but if he’s not busted down to an Ensign when they get back to the 25th century, what’s the point of the Temporal Prime Directive at all?

A good episode that robs the season – yet again – of its forward motion. This is so frustrating that a season of only ten episodes has this much padding. I would honestly prefer less episodes than this.

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