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     Episode Guides Home : Startrek The Next Generation : Season 1 Episode 17

When the Bough Breaks

Air Date:  
   Kim Manners
Written By:  
   Hannah Louise Shearer
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StarDate: 41509.1

The U.S.S. Enterprise accidentally discovers Aldea, a planet with advanced technology that provides every need or want a person could have.

Although Aldea has hidden itself from the universe behind a sophisticated shield, it's soon apparent that the discovery was no accident. Having lost the ability to reproduce, the Aldeans kidnap several children from the U.S.S. Enterprise, including Wesley, to perpetuate their race.

When hostage negotiations fail, Picard struggles to find a method of penetrating the planet's shield while Dr. Crusher studies the cause of the Aldean sterility problem. Meanwhile, Wesley uncovers the key to the planet's sophistication-a computer known as the Custodian, whose power source is unknown even to the Aldeans.

Before long, Dr. Crusher discovers that the Aldeans are suffering from radiation poisoning caused by the protective shield overhead. As it turns out, the shield has also weakened the planet's atmosphere. Picard and Crusher inform the Aldean leaders of this development and plead for the release of the children. When the Aldeans agree Picard uses the U.S.S. Enterprise to repair the planet's atmosphere. Crusher, meanwhile, gives the dying race a treatment that will save them.

Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard
Jonathan Frakes as William Thomas Riker
LeVar Burton as Geordi La Forge
Denise Crosby as Natasha "Tasha" Yar
Michael Dorn as Worf
Gates McFadden as Beverly Crusher
Marina Sirtis as Deanna Troi
Brent Spiner as Data
Wil Wheaton as Wesley Crusher

  Guest Cast
Brenda Strong as Rashella
Jerry Hardin as Radue
Paul Lambert as Melian
Ivy Bethune as Duana
Jandie Swanson as Katie

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