53 – The Q and the Grey

Grade: C+

The Q And The Grey (1996) on IMDb


The Voyager crew are witnessing a supernova, and have set a new Starfleet record in being able to come so close to one. Suddenly, Q appears on the ship with a bizarre request. He wants Captain Janeway to bear his child, because he believes this will repair the damage to the Q Continuum caused by the death of “Quinn.” Janeway travels into the Continuum for the second time and finds out that the supernovae are a result of a civil war among the Q.


This episode starts out OK, gets a little goofy, then it turns bizarre, and ultimately becomes ridiculous. In total, it is one of the most average episodes of this entire franchise, despite being one of the best episodes of Voyager’s third season so far.

John DeLancie is the only redeeming grace that this episode has to offer, though Kate Mulgrew’s performance is better than usual here. “The Q and the Grey” is full of some silly moments and sometimes witty dialogue, but once the Cavalry shows up to save the day, you know this can never be taken as anything but a mindless piece of fluff.

Unfortunately for this episode, I think it really could have been far more serious and thought-provoking. If it had been, I would be more likely to call it “high concept,” as Brannon Braga was so fond of describing this series. I assume he doesn’t define that term the same way I do, if he thinks this particular episode fits the definition. For one thing, it’s full of the standard Q gags that we’ve already grown far too tired of, but then the ending is just beyond silly. If the plot had been handled with a little more precision and skill, then I would probably agree that it is “high concept.” After all, this episode does deal with the ideas of individual rights, freedoms and self-determination, but it feels like it was written by a bunch of high school freshmen.

In short, it’s not an awful episode, but it does leave me wanting for much more. This doesn’t compare to the other episodes dealing with the Q.

Of Note

Remember on Next Generation when Q was actually a villain? Yeah, that’s gone now.

Q says here that having a child has never been done before in the Q Continuum, but that’s not true. In the Next Generation episode “True Q”, Captain Picard discovers that two Q beings were killed on Earth because they had a child together. That child grows up to be known as Amanda Rogers and ends up visiting the Enterprise.

Suzie Plakson, who played a Vulcan and a Klingon in previous episodes of TNG, makes a couple of remarks about Vulcans and Klingons. I thought it was a rather nice touch to previous Star Trek episodes.