164: Sub Rosa (7.14)

Synopsis:  Twilight is to whale vomit as Sub Rosa is to…

Memory Alpha Summary:  For the love of all that is holy, don’t read two chapters.

Review:   Easily the most ridiculous episode in the entire series run, I can’t believe Gates McFadden was able to keep a straight face through it all.  The sad thing here is that her performance is actually pretty impressive given what she had to work with.  Having an orgasm with a ghost (while also realizing it’s going to be on prime time TV) cannot be easy.

I don’t hate this episode because it’s a Gothic romance novel.  I also don’t hate this episode because the sci-fi is essentially limited to the sexual slave master being able to travel along a power transfer beam.  I hate it because the characters say the stupidest things ever said in space.

First we get everyone talking about the  “Howard women” and how their green eyes go back 800 years.  We are even given the name of the first woman our slave master raped in the 17th century, and it’s Jessel Howard (and to any woman who thought this episode was romantic: you are endorsing rape and you don’t deserve to have sex ever again).  So we’re led to believe that Beverly was the first female in her entire family’s history that changed her last name when she got married.   I can force myself to ignore subtle plot holes but this one grates on me.

Second, everyone dances around the most obviously gross aspect of this story.  Beverly is essentially fucking her dead grandma’s booty call.  Troi admonishes Beverly, warning her that two people who share a trauma sometimes get together under false pretenses.  Yes, Troi, but you forget to mention to Beverly that this guy just regularly fucked her grandmother.  She even encourages Beverly to read more of her grandma’s erotic journal entries(!) so she can have wet dreams about her grandma’s boyfriend.  What.  The.  F?

9 thoughts on “164: Sub Rosa (7.14)”

  1. Having an orgasm with a ghost (while also realizing it’s going to be on prime time TV) cannot be easy

    I had to have an orgasm onstage once. Honestly, it’s easy. You just lose yourself in it and mime it. It doesn’t take much…it was one of the easiest acting jobs ever. Yes, she was doing it for prime time, but she was also doing it in front of maybe 20 crew members in reality. Lauren and I were doing it in front of 500 people a night…

    …granted, neither of us were supposed to be fucking ghosts.

    1. I’m inclined to think it would be easy for Spooky to act like he was having an orgasm.

      “Mmmhh, Mmhh, wait… don’t… ugh. Sorry.”

  2. I didn’t think this episode was that bad. Then again, I came into it knowing that it was one of the most despised TNG episodes, so I guess it wasn’t hard for it to exceed my already low expectations. I thought a TNG ghost episode was a cool idea, and I’m glad that Beverly was finally given the lead role. Yes, the dialogue at times is silly and doesn’t make any sense, and I too was confused and surprised that no one seemed to care that Beverly was f**king her grandma’s lover. Oh well… if I had to rank it on a scale of 1-10 (5 being borderline average), this episode would get a 5 from me.
    I’m really enjoying your countdown. Keep up the great work.

    1. thanks, Marty! I appreciate people’s opinions. I certainly am not doing this because I’m married to the rankings. I wanted to discuss the episodes, and ranking them was for fun.

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