||This article consists almost entirely of a plot summary. It should be expanded to provide more balanced coverage that includes real-world context. (July 2013) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)|
|Star Trek: The Next Generation episode|
|Episode no.||Season 6
|Directed by||Cliff Bole|
|Written by||Morgan Gendel|
|Featured music||Jay Chattaway|
|Cinematography by||Jonathan West|
|Editing by||David Ramirez|
|Original air date||March 29, 1993|
"Starship Mine" is the 144th episode of the science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation, the 18th episode of the sixth season. The episode features Tim Russ, who later played the role of Tuvok on Star Trek: Voyager, in a minor role.
While the starship Enterprise is evacuated for maintenance, Captain Picard must, alone, contend with mercenaries posing as a work crew aboard ship.
The Federation starship Enterprise is docked at the Remmler Array to be decontaminated through use of a baryon sweep, harmless to the inorganic materials of the ship but deadly to living beings. The ship is evacuated to the array's base and its systems shut down in preparation for the sweep. Captain Picard and the rest of the senior staff are invited by the Base's Commanding officer, Commander Calvin Hutchinson, to a cocktail party, but Picard foresees that he will be cornered by Hutchinson's "small talk" during the event. He returns to the Enterprise to retrieve his riding saddle to go horse riding instead, but on leaving finds an array technician working with the ship's panels. Picard tries to find out what the technician is doing, but he is attacked instead; Picard gains the upper hand and knocks the technician out with his saddle.
Meanwhile, at the cocktail party, Enterprise Chief Engineer LaForge detects strange readings coming from one of the centerpieces with his VISOR. Before he can investigate, the other array staff members take the partygoers as hostages, injuring LaForge and killing Hutchinson, and prevent them from communicating with the rest of the crew or Starfleet while the sweep is initiated. The crew stealthily work to devise a plan to break free of their captors.
Aboard the Enterprise, Picard discovers that a small force of technicians, led by a woman named Kelsey, are aboard attempting to steal trilithium resin from the warp engines to sell to another group as part of a powerful explosive. With the baryon sweep progressing forward through the ship, Picard plays a game of cat-and-mouse with the technicians while staying ahead of the baryon field. At one point, a terrible scream indicates that one of the technicians was caught in the baryon field. Eventually having neutralized all but Kelsey, Picard retreats to Ten-Forward, the last area that will be hit by the sweep. Kelsey manages to beam away to a waiting ship. Picard repeatedly hails the base to deactivate the baryon sweep. The Enterprise officers, having managed to overcome their captors by an elaborate ruse involving Geordi's VISOR, are able to stop the sweep just in time to save Picard's life. Data informs Picard of a shuttle trying to escape. Picard, having taken the control rod from the trilithium's storage container during his fight with Kelsey, states that they will not get far as the trilithium explodes, destroying the shuttle.
Tim Russ made his first appearance in the Star Trek franchise in "Starship Mine". He had previously been the second choice actor for the part of Geordi LaForge at the start of the series, but LeVar Burton was chosen instead by Gene Roddenberry. Russ subsequently auditioned on multiple occasions for parts in episodes, and was again considered for a main part role in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Following his appearance in "Starship Mine", he appeared as a Klingon in the Deep Space Nine episode "Invasive Procedures" and an unnamed part in the film Star Trek Generations before landing the role of Tuvok in the main cast of Star Trek: Voyager. The episode has been dubbed 'Die Hard in Space'.
- Spelling, Ian. "Tim Russ: Tuvok". The Official Star Trek: Voyager Magazine 1 (2): 15–20.
- Star Trek The Next Generation DVD set, volume 6, disc 5, selection 2.