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Category:    Home > Reviews > Science Fiction > TV > Adventure > Space Opera > Action > Star Trek – The Next Generation: Season Four (1990 – 1991/CBS/Paramount Blu-rays) + Star Trek – The Next Generation: Redemption (Paramount/CBS Blu-ray + Ultraviolet Copy)

Star Trek – The Next Generation: Season Four (1990 – 1991/CBS/Paramount Blu-rays) + Star Trek – The Next Generation: Redemption (Paramount/CBS Blu-ray + Ultraviolet Copy)


Picture: B+     Sound: B+     Extras: B+/B     Episodes: B+



I love Star Trek and Star Trek- Next Generation is truly an excellent series.  By the time Season Four hit the airwaves audiences anxiously were awaiting the conclusion to the Season Three cliffhanger.  Picard was captured, but would he escape?  Well (obviously) at this point we know he did as he went on to star in 4 more seasons.  Though we would come to find out he would never be the same man again.


As previously mentioned Season Four starts out with a bang as we are treated to the conclusion of the Season Three cliffhanger “Best of Both Worlds: Part II”; from that point the stories of Season Four take flight.  By this point long gone are the formalities of explaining the dynamics of the series, alien races, or ‘how things work.’  We as an audience take everything for face value as most of the science fiction in the series attempts to be grounded in science fact.


Also with formalities and explanatory dialogue gone, series creators had time to develop the characters and their relationships with each other.  Of course the series has its corny/dated moments (painfully 80’s/early 90’s at times), but for the most part the series remains fresh and entertaining.


This season has some firsts like the introduction of a new alien race The Cardassians and the series 100th episode, “Redemption.”  The Cardassians are introduced in the episode “The Wounded” and should not be confused with the Kardashians, for the Cardassians are actually intelligent beings (I kid!!).  Anyhow, the introduction of the Cardassians is a means to establish a future ‘enemy’ for Star Fleet to quarrel with.  The Borg had been previously introduced, but their inhuman nature made it difficult to initiate well rounded dialogue and development.  The Cardassians, however, are a military presence with strategy and intention.  In the episode “The Wounded” we are drawn into being sympathetic to this new race as another Star Fleet Captain has (seemingly) wronged them; we are soon to discover not all things are as they appear.


“Redemption” is the series 100th episode and appears this season.  This 2-part episode is also being reviewed here on standalone Blu-ray with Ultraviolet copy (much like the Paramount release of “Best of Both Worlds: Part I & II”).  “Redemption” is the Season Four cliffhanger, which chronicles the Klingon Empire on the brink of civil war.  The Klingons’ former leader has died and the council is attempting to install a new leader named Gowron.  Gowron’s placement is being challenged by Duras’ (the former leader) sisters and his illegitimate son.  Picard in this episode is acting as an arbitrator for the council and determines Duras to be too young/inexperienced to rule; in turn placing Gowron in control.  Gowron in control of the Klingon empire gives Star Fleet crew member Worf (a Klingon) the chance to have his family’s name restored to honor; but in the end also insights civil war.  We are left with Worf caught between two worlds as he must resign his Star Fleet position to protect his family and heritage.  “Redemption: Part II” (included on the standalone Blu-ray) will show the outcome of these choices and how the Star Trek universe may have changed forever.


An excellent season that paves the way for future seasons of greatness.


The technical features on this 4th Season as well as the standalone Redemption Blu-ray set are well executed and continue to upgrade both picture and sound; as was found with the Season Three release.  Again this set is the best TNG has ever looked on home video.  The remastered 1080p 1.33 X 1 image is impressively well done. The level of detail is again astonishing and elements that were never able to be displayed on TV are available here; as well as CBS again taking the time to go back and touch up (digitally) some of the special effects and planetary visuals (clouds, water, etc).  The dated special effects are mostly upgraded and gone here, which only improves the presentation.  Again colors are vibrant, blacks are dark and framing and the overall presentation is more than enjoyable.  The sound remains a DTS 7.1 HD Master Audio that again uses the whole soundscape and even better than in the previous three releases.  Dialogue is clean and clear, ambient noises fill the speakers, and the series dramatic musical scores project with ease.


Impressively this set (taking it up a notch) does include many HD extras. Extras on the Season 4 set include:

·         All New Multi Part Documentary – Relativity: The Family Saga of Star Trek – The Next Generation [HD]

·         In Conversation: The Star Trek Art Department [HD]

·         Audio Commentaries on episodes ‘Brothers’ and ‘Reunion’

·         Gag Reel created from original film elements [HD]

·         Deleted Scenes [HD]

·         Archival Mission Logs

·         Episodic Promos


Extras on Redemption include:

·         Audio Commentary with Ronald D Moore & Mike & Denise Okuda

·         Survive and Succeed: An Empire at War [HD]

·         Episodic Promos: Part 1 and Part 2


Two great sets, but if you plan on owning the whole series (like I do); don’t rush to get Redemption as that set is for super fans or those who only want to own the end of season cliffhangers.



-   Michael P. Dougherty II


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