Family is often at the root of why our favorite characters are the way they are. The formative years can shape who a person grows up to be and the personality they exhibit. Interactions with parents, children and siblings tell us more about a person than seeing them fire phasers or save the day. It’s no wonder that some of the best storytelling we have in the Trek-verse involves the families of the main characters. The tiny glimpses we get behind the veneer to peek at what makes them tick enliven these personas even more. Who can forget the first sight of tiny Alexander as he stands facing his towering father Worf?
Does the best family story involve the long-dead family that Picard experiences within his mind in “The Inner Light” (TNG) when under the influence of an alien probe? Perhaps it’s the first view we get of Spock’s parents in “Journey to Babel”? This episode goes a long way in making the Vulcan seem less alien and more relatable. Maybe your favorite episode is “Family” (TNG) where we get a picture of Picard with his brother on the family vineyard as he recuperates from the Borg assimilation and the visit of Worf’s adoptive parents to the Enterprise. Or it might be the Hugo-nominated episode “The Visitor” (DN9) where we find an ageing Jake Sisko recounting the struggle of losing his father and then paying the ultimate sacrifice to save him.
For our poll this week, we ask you to tell us your favorite Star Trek episode that features a family-themed storyline.
What is the best family episode in your opinion and why?