Passing through a series of complex energy patterns, the Enterprise crew find themselves trying to solve the mystery surrounding the murder of Assistant Chief Engineer Singh and the altered personalities of Lt. Worf, Dr. Crusher and the Captain.
While transporting two adversary civilizations to the conference planet of Parliament, the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise pass through a mysterious "cloud" containing combinations of complex energy patterns.
Immediately, strange things begin to happen on the ship. It seems that both Lt. Worf and Dr. Crusher have become afflicted with confusing behavior, while the ship malfunctions and repairs itself with no available explanation.
Soon after entering the strange "cloud," Assistant Chief Engineer Singh is killed while investigating the ship's mechanical malfunctions. At once the Starfleet crew begins investigating the circumstances surrounding Singh's death. Tasha questions the visitors aboard the Enterprise and Troi puts Lt. Worf and Dr. Crusher under hypnosis to determine their thoughts during their spells of strange behavior. Both Dr. Crusher and Lt. Worf reveal that "it felt as if someone or something had invaded their minds and bodies."
After coming into contact with this strange being, Captain Picard shocks the crew with his bizarre actions. He commands the U.S.S. Enterprise back into the "cloud," thwarting the original mission to deliver the aliens to Parliament. The Captain, still under the being's influence, announces that in its struggle to return home, the entity accidentally disabled the ship, killing Singh and invading Lt. Worf, Dr. Crusher and himself. The being, now in full control of Captain Picard's behavior, announces Picard's resignation. Despite the crew's objections and their determination to fight the force that seems to be taking over Picard's mind, their efforts are in vain. The Captain is gone.
Riker takes command of the U.S.S. Enterprise and orders the ship to proceed towards Parliament. By this time, the real Captain (in the form of energy) manages to move into the transporter relays and materialize back aboard the starship.
By Dark Materia on 13 Dec 2002 14:02:26 Data's Sherlock Holmes impersonation is a season highlight. But the Anticans and the Selay are the most ridiculous aliens ever to haunt the Star Trek universe, they would look more at home in the cantina scene in Star Wars. Picard floating around in a cloud of energy is also highly suspect.