The 50 Greatest Star Trek moments of all time

David Brown selects his personal highlights from a half century of the sci-fi franchise

40. The Klingons attack – The Way of the Warrior

Advertisement

Some real pep was put in DS9’s step at the start of the fourth season thanks to Worf’s introduction and the end of the alliance between the Klingon Empire and the Federation. It all comes crashing down in this brutal encounter as the Klingons invade – bat’leths fly, phaser fire streaks across the screen and the once static TNG spin-off finally recovers some momentum. As a result of this showdown, life aboard the station would never be the same again.

117144

39. Life goes on – What You Leave Behind

The likes of Breaking Bad and House get a lot of credit for introducing America to serialised stories on TV, but DS9 was there a decade before with a tale that took years in the telling. At its climax, Kira has had to say a tearful farewell to Odo, while Sisko has become a non-corporeal entity. Finally, Sisko’s son Jake is joined by Kira at a window on the upper Promenade for a melancholy, bittersweet but ultimately hopeful final scene that’s unlike any other send-off in the Trek canon.

38. Q’s Mariachi Band – Deja Q

Q celebrates his re-admittance to the Continuum by turning up on the bridge with sombreros, trumpets and cigars for Picard and Riker. Now, everyone remembers the moment when Q gives Data the gift of laughter, but the stand-out highlight is definitely Riker’s reaction when two bikini-clad ladies suddenly appear by his side. “I don’t need your fantasy women,” he protests, having already seduced his way across the galaxy. “You’re so stolid,” chastises Q. “You weren’t like that before the beard.”

117145

37. Spock v the punk  – Star Trek IV: the Voyage Home

Nothing sums up the time travel/culture clash comedy of this movie more than seeing Spock nerve-pinch a punk inflicting his ‘I Hate You’ song on a bus of San Francisco citizens. Just the very 80s-ness of it remains hilarious: the bird-flipping, the ghetto blaster, those “colourful metaphors”….And trivia fans may get a kick out of knowing that said punk is played by the movie’s associate producer Kirk Thatcher, who also wrote the song’s lyrics.

36. “Time’s Up” – Year of Hell

Advertisement

A couple of great spectacles here: the sight of a filthy, vest-clad Janeway facing certain death and the image of a heavily damaged Voyager ramming the enemy Krenim ship. “This is one year I’d like to forget,” says our bold captain as she tries to set a mangled timeline straight, but this high-stakes season four two-parter lingers long in our memories.

117147