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“It’s about an entire other concept”: One Brent Spiner Episode Gave us the Best Star Trek Villain of The Next Generation

Brent Spiner starred in the iconic 1987 series Star Trek: The Next Generation and portrayed the role of the android called Data in the franchise. However, things became interesting when Data decided to play a little game.

Brent Spiner played Data in Star Trek
Brent Spiner as the android Data in Star Trek: Nemesis | Paramount Pictures

During the second season of the show, an iconic episode was released called “Elementary, Dear Data” which was one of the smartest concepts that the franchise had ever created.

Brent Spiner Gave Us An Iconic Villain For Star Trek: The Next Generation

Credits to the writers and the director of that episode, but it was Brent Spiner’s portrayal of Data that brought this iconic villain to life. When Captain Jean-Luc Picard (portrayed by Patrick Stewart) is waiting for the USS Victory, Data and La Forge decide to play a little game.

Daniel Davies
Daniel Davis as Moriarty in Star Trek: The Next Generation | Paramount Domestic Television

A concept called the Holodeck was used, which was essentially virtual reality but in the 24th century. Data and La Forge decide to play the Sherlock Holmes game but Data already knows all the answers and solves the mystery within minutes.

Dr. Pulaski joins in on the fun and tells the Holodeck to create a villain that is stronger and more capable than Brent Spiner’s character of Data. The result was Professor Moriarty. However, things take a massive turn when Moriarty gets self-awareness and realizes that he is in a hologram but has access to the ship!

In an interview with Daily Star Trek News, Daniel Davis, who portrayed the role of Professor Moriarty sat down for a chat.

This is a take on Moriarty, but it’s not about Moriarty being this mustache-twirling villain. It’s about an entire other concept that they have in mind about what it means to be human

He further continued,

What it means for a sentient hologram to figure out things that they don’t expect him to figure out and understand.

Although Picard convinced Moriarty that they didn’t have the technology to create matter from the Holodeck, the character of Moriarty didn’t stop existing there.

The character of Professor Moriarty is so great that the show decided to keep him around. Moriarty went on to appear two more times throughout the franchise including, Star Trek: Picard Season 3!

Professor Moriarty Appeared Two More Times!

At the end of Elementary, Dear Data, Captain Jean-Luc Picard convinces Moriarty that they will find a way to get him out of the hologram and become a real human. Moriarty ceases the control of the ship but later returns with a bang.

Brent Spiner as Data in Star Trek: Picard | Trae Patton/Paramount+

The 12th episode of season six of Star Trek: The Next Generation features Moriarty again as he accidentally becomes sentient within the Holodeck. Chaos ensues when Moriarty takes control of the whole ship and demands Picard to give him the access codes.

Picard gives him the access codes but soon realizes that Moriarty doesn’t actually have control of the ship! It was just a hologram and he was a part of the Holodeck. Piccard thus accidentally gave him the real passcode for controlling the Enterprise!

In the end, Picard creates a makeshift drive and uploads Moriarty in a memory storage which is now Moriarty’s life. However, in the recently released Star Trek: Picard Season 3, the familiar frenemy makes an appearance again.

So all in all, Professor Moriarty is indeed a force to be reckoned with and is definitely one of the fan-favorites of the Star Trek franchise.

With high ratings and a thank-you letter from NASA to its name, the Star Trek franchise is available to stream on Paramount+ in the U.S.

This post belongs to FandomWire and first appeared on FandomWire

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