Captain's Holiday

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"Captain's Holiday"
Star Trek: The Next Generation episode
Episode no. Season 3
Episode 19
Directed by Chip Chalmers
Written by Ira Steven Behr
Featured music Dennis McCarthy
Cinematography by Marvin Rush
Production code 167
Original air date April 2, 1990 (1990-04-02)
Guest appearance(s)
Episode chronology
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List of Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes

"Captain's Holiday" is the 19th episode of the third season of the syndicated American science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation, and the 67th episode of the series overall.

Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures of the Federation starship USS Enterprise-D. In this episode, Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) is talked into taking shore leave on the resort planet of Risa, where he finds himself drawn into an archeological adventure with a woman of questionable ethics ("Vash" portrayed by Jennifer Hetrick) and pursued by a nefarious Ferengi (Max Grodénchik).


The crew of the Enterprise is noticing how stressed Captain Picard is, and everyone makes not so subtle suggestions that he should take a vacation, Dr. Crusher going as far as ordering him to do so. It's Troi's "threat" that her mother is expressing an interest to visit that pushes Picard over the edge and agree to go. Based on the recommendation of Riker, he ends up on Risa, a pleasure planet, and shortly after he arrives he is kissed by a woman he has never met, as it turns out an attempt for her to fend off a Ferengi.

Picard tries to relax with a book, but is frequently interrupted by beautiful women, the last of which explaining that the idol he purchased for Riker at Riker's bequest is a Risan symbol of sexuality, and displaying it is an open invitation. After hiding the idol and settling in for hopeful peace, the woman who kissed him upon arrival approaches him and introduces herself as Vash. After she apologizes for the kiss and subsequently interrupting his peace, she leaves. Sovak, the Ferengi seen earlier, arrives shortly thereafter and accuses Picard of conspiring with Vash, who has in her possession an optical disc that Sovak wants. Picard has no interest in the quarrel, and leaves. He runs into Vash again, and Sovak uses that run in as another opportunity to fling more accusations. During this exchange, Vash slips the optical disc in Picard's pocket and walks off with Sovak.

Picard returns to his room and is confronted by two aliens who identify themselves as Vorgons, alien time travelers from the 27th century, searching for an object called the Tox Uthat. The Uthat is a powerful weapon, with the ability to stop the fusion reactions of a star, and the scientist who invented it traveled back in time to hide it. According to their historical records, Picard will locate this object on Risa. He tells them that he has no idea what they are talking about and they leave. Picard then discovers the disc, and he confronts Vash. She claims to be the former assistant of an archaeologist who had discovered the location of the Uthat, and that the disc was given to her for safekeeping.

Picard and Vash use the information on the disc to determine the Uthat's hiding place. As they prepare to leave, Sovak confronts them again, this time with an illegal phaser pistol. Picard easily overpowers Sovak and he and Vash dash off before Sovak can regain consciousness. While exploring nearby caves, Vash confesses to Picard that she was paid by Sovak to find the Uthat but double-crossed him. Picard overlooks this confession and the two give in to a deep attraction.

They arrive at the location where the Uthat is buried, however, Vash is unable to locate it with her scanning device, so Picard suggests they start digging for it. The Vorgons appear to witness the discovery of the Uthat, and then Sovak arrives, this time with a phaser rifle, and taunts Vash for not successfully destroying a copy of the disc that he found and used to locate them. Vash and Picard excavate the site by gun point for hours, but do not find the Uthat, and despite Sovak's threats, give up digging. The Vorgons are confused because this doesn't line up with their historical record and they leave. Sovak, in his obsession, refuses to believe that the Uthat isn't there, throws away the rifle, and starts digging while Vash and Picard return to town.

Later, Vash attempts to sneak away from the resort, but Picard intercepts her. He surmises that she arrived days earlier, located the Uthat, and devised a plan to create a ruse that would fool Sovak into thinking the Uthat was lost. She picks up an idol on display, and opens the head to reveal the Uthat. The Vorgons reappear, demanding the Uthat, and Vash reveals to Picard that the Vorgons are the people who had been harassing her former employer about the location of the Uthat and believes that their intentions are less than honourable. Picard grabs the Uthat, gives a coded command to the Enterprise, that had just returned to pick him up, and uses the transporter to destroy it. The disappointed Vorgons reveal that Picard has acted just as their records said by destroying the Uthat, admit defeat, and leave. Vash and Picard have a final intimate exchange before they say goodbye to each other.

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