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Recap / Star Trek The Next Generation S 7 E 17 Eye Of The Beholder

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Troi and Worf investigate the mysterious suicide of an engineer.

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  • All Just a Dream: Everything from when Troi and Worf go to the nacelle control room onward is a vision Troi was experiencing. Interestingly, everything she sees and learns proves to be true later...because it was an "empathic echo" of previous events that had actually happened.
  • Arc Words: "I know what I have to do."
  • Big "NO!": Marla Finn, as seen in Troi's vision.
  • Call-Back:
  • The Chains of Commanding: Riker smacks the bulkhead out of frustration after Kwan kills himself, mainly because Riker feels he could have done more to stop Kwan.
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  • Clueless Aesop: The episode is a bizarre and curiously awkward attempt at an anti-suicide PSA, but they botch it by trying to have it both ways. The first act treats the suicide of a Red Shirt completely seriously, exploring it from all angles, explaining how those that kill themselves often show no obvious signs of distress. It's fairly effective, sort of a forerunner of the subject's similar treatment on an episode of House, M.D.. And then they completely botch it by Hand-Waving the uncharacteristic suicide as being the result of Psychic Powers gone awry, using it as another pitstop in the Worf/Troi Ship Tease. One wonders if the writers held the opinion that no one would seriously want to kill themselves in the Mary Sue Topia that is the 24th Century (given Gene Roddenberry's idealization of it, he at least likely did think that).
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  • Death Notification: Picard mentions having done this before, but never involving suicide.
  • Does This Remind You of Anything?: Psyilosynine, the neurotransmitter that is involved in Troi's empathic abilities, sounds eerily similar to psilocybin, the active ingredient in magic mushrooms, possibly implying that Betazoids are on Space Shrooms all the time?
  • Driven to Suicide: Both Kwan and Troi. Only Worf's presence prevented Troi from jumping into the plasma stream. Later it's revealed that the memories that Kwan and Troi experienced were of a man who died under the same circumstances they had experienced.
  • Half-Human Hybrid: In addition to Troi, Daniel Kwan is half-Human, half-Napean, making him The Empath.
    • Similarly, Walter Pierce was one-quarter Betazoid. When he committed suicide, his empathic abilities left an "echo" in the nacelle bulkhead that affected Kwan and Troi.
  • I Don't Want to Ruin Our Friendship: Said by Troi to Worf during her dream.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Troi's reaction to killing Worf in her vision after she catches him with another woman. All but stated to have been the case with Pierce and Kwan as well.
  • My Sister Is Off-Limits!: Riker mentions this trope during Worf's clumsy attempt to find out if he still harbors feelings for Troi. Not that he's at all serious about it.
  • Psychic-Assisted Suicide: Anyone with empathic abilities will receive flashbacks of Pierce's last moments, then will be filled with guilt and despair and want to jump into the plasma stream.
  • Starts with a Suicide: Of Lt. Daniel Kwan.
  • Talking Down the Suicidal: Riker tries to get through to Kwan. He fails.
  • Woman Scorned: Troi to seeing Worf with another woman, in her vision anyway. It's confirmed that Pierce and Kwan had similar reactions to their girlfriends with other men.
  • You Did Everything You Could: Worf says this to Riker after his failure to save Kwan.
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