Rewatching ST:TNG after a 20-year break.
A Klingon exchange officer brings news of Worf’s long-lost father, prompting the Enterprise to visit the Klingon home world.
The first part of the episode gives us what we want– a tough Klingon striding through the corridors of the Enterprise, not only picking on nerds Wesley and LaForge, but also displacing Riker as the alpha male, and doing everything he can to make Worf fume.
Riker does his best to smooth things over. At a fancy dinner where Picard cheerfully carves a roast turkey, Commander Kurn wrenches off a turkey leg, grabs handfuls of caviar, and quips about having to refrain from killing Riker. Troi lets out a nervous giggle… but how serious was he?
Just when we expect the Space Thing of the Week to cause a crisis that makes everyone work together to appreciate each others’ differences, the story takes a sharp turn when Worf throws a chair, Kurn reveals his true motives, and soon the Enterprise is warping to the Klingon homeworld.
If you like cloak-and-dagger palace intrigue, this story has squeaky warrior costumes, arcane alien rituals, attempted assassinations, and lots of shouting.
At a time when most TV produced stand-alone episodes that could be watched in any order, nobody else on TNG got a story arc quite like Worf’s. His personal connection to the events leading to the Klingon Civil War would continue through the run of ST:TNG, and on into the spinoff series Deep Space Nine.