Many Americans are unaware that their favourite episodes of Star Trek weren’t at all times accessible to observe abroad when the collection was initially on the air. Such was the case with one banned TNG episode, entitled The High Ground. That episode took on a particular significance after the occasions of Brexit. Here’s all the pieces it’s essential learn about why this episode was initially banned in a single territory, and the way it was ultimately broadcast in its unedited and uncensored kind.
‘The High Ground’ Was a Banned ‘TNG’ Episode
29 January: Episode premieres
1990: The High Ground (TNG, season 3)
1996: Crossfire (DS9, season 4)
1996: Threshold (VOY, season 2)
1997: Coda (VOY, season 3)#StarTrek #TNG #TheHighGround #DS9 #Crossfire #VOY #Threshold #Coda #OTD #OnThisDay pic.twitter.com/c1Qh1v9Hg8
— Today In Star Trek History (@TodayinStarTrek) January 29, 2020
The High Ground was an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. In the episode, Dr. Crusher is taken hostage by a gaggle of insurgent separatists referred to as the Ansata. However, this episode was initially banned from air in its unedited and unique format in some markets.
According to a 2007 BBC report, on the time the episode had “by no means been proven on terrestrial TV in UK or within the Republic of Ireland and preliminary airings on Sky One have been edited”. Entertainment.ie corroborates assertions that the episode was hardly ever broadcast within the United Kingdom and Ireland, noting: “the BBC particularly pulled the episode on its first-run transmission in 1990,” and that RTE, the published group in Ireland “reportedly by no means screened the episode”, even by 2020.
The episode’s author, Melinda M. Snodgrass, was an American born in Los Angeles, California. She later moved, along with her household, to New Mexico. According to Ancestry.com, the Snodgrass identify is of Scottish origin, not Irish. She additionally wrote the episode The Ensigns of Command. Snodgrass is credited with offering a VHS tape that allowed CBS to reconstruct an episode with an prolonged reduce. That episode was The Measure of a Man, for the TNG season two Blu-ray launch. According to Memory Alpha, which was citing data from web page 191 of Captains’ Logs: The Unauthorized Complete Trek Voyages, Snodgrass was sad about including references to Northern Ireland to her unique script.
Why Was ‘The High Ground’ Banned in Ireland?
In an apart in the course of the episode, Data referred to the reunification of Ireland in 2024, a revelation that prompted ScreenRant to listing this episode (and its reception worldwide) amongst Star Trek‘s largest scandals.
At the time the episode was written, and to today, Ireland is split. The nation of Ireland is a separate entity from Northern Ireland, due to the 1920 Government of Ireland Act. The sectarian violence in Ireland has its roots on this act, with the Irish Times noting that the “violence that engulfed the North from its inception began in the summertime of 1920”.
By the time the episode was written, the battle in Northern Ireland was being referred to within the media as “The Troubles“.
The 2024 Date Took on Special Significance, Post-Brexit
Star Trek has at all times been political. Gene Roddenberry designed ST to make use of s-f allegory to inform tales which may not in any other case be allowed on community TV. From the start, Gene needed to show a daring, higher future the place range isn’t solely tolerated, however actively celebrated.
— Michael Okuda (@MikeOkuda) August 2, 2020
While the episode initially aired within the United States again in January of 1990, the episode grew to become related once more to twenty first Century audiences after Brexit grew to become a subject of worldwide dialog. For some followers, it is onerous to to not surprise if the 2024 date for reunification is extra real looking now that it was when the episode first aired.
When the UK opted to depart the EU, that threw the way forward for Ireland, Northern Ireland, and Scotland into query, because the “go away” resolution Reuters famous that, post-Brexit, “Northern Ireland will stay aligned to the EU’s single market and items arriving in Northern Ireland shall be topic to EU customs guidelines.”
According to a 2019 report from the Irish Post, “With battle nonetheless rife in Northern Ireland on the time, the episode ended up being closely edited earlier than broadcast within the UK and Ireland…To date, it has by no means aired in full on the island of Ireland.”
The BBC Also Banned Several ‘TOS’ Episodes
17 September: Key scenes filmed
PLATO’S STEPCHILDREN (TOS)
1968: The Platonians drive Kirk and Uhura to kiss in a landmark second for US tv.#StarTrek #TOS #PlatosStepchildren #OTD #OnThisDay pic.twitter.com/Gmlw9HWlby
— Today In Star Trek History (@TodayinStarTrek) September 17, 2020
Censorship by the BBC did not have an effect on simply TNG. According to Den of Geek, the BBC refused to air 4 completely different TOS episodes in the course of the interval of 1969-1994, and different episodes have been edited not directly. The 4 episodes not aired have been Plato’s Stepchildren, Miri, Empath, and Whom Gods Destroy.