It is well-established Trek gospel that the first truly great episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation is “The Measure of a Man” from season 2. In it, a snotty scientist specializing in robotics declares Lt. Commander Data (Brent Spiner) to be the property of Starfleet, and therefore must submit to an experimental procedure that could very well eradicate his memory — all in the hope of cracking the code to be able to make more androids like him.
Data is not terribly fond of the idea. In the version of the episode that aired in 1989, neither was Capt. Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart), who fought the decision with a stirring oration on the very nature of personhood. But in this exclusive deleted scene from the upcoming ST:TNG season 2 Blu-ray edition (out Dec. 4), we can see that Picard’s initial feelings about Data’s obligations to Starfleet were quite different.
Finding the deleted material was only possible after the team that has been remastering ST:TNG into high definition for Blu-ray release contacted the episode’s writer, Melinda M. Snodgrass, who had the only remaining VHS copy of the extended cut.
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