Top 10 Star Trek: The Next Generation Episodes

Top 10 Star Trek: The Next Generation Episodes
VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Aaron Cameron.

Boldly going were no one had gone before, these are the episodes that refuse to let history forget the name Enterprise. Over two decades after his first creation in the franchise, Gene Roddenberry brought the next installment of his beloved franchise to the small screen. In this video, counts down our picks for the top 10 "Star Trek: The Next Generation" episodes. For this list, we'll be looking at memorable episodes of the television series and not the later feature films. And yes, you can expect some spoilers ahead.

Special thanks to our users Alexander David Bourns and jwiking62 for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest

Script written by Aaron Cameron.

Top 10 Star Trek: The Next Generation Episodes

Boldly going were no one had gone before, these are the episodes that refuse to let history forget the name Enterprise. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 “Star Trek: The Next Generation” episodes.

For this list, we’ll be looking at memorable episodes of the television series and not the later feature films. And yes, you can expect some spoilers ahead.

#10: “Encounter at Farpoint”
Season 1, Episodes 1-2

On the Enterprise-D’s maiden voyage, Captain Picard is sent to collect his senior officers – including a baby-faced Will Riker – at a new and mysterious outpost. Sounds simple enough, until the captain – and humanity at large – is put on trial by the god-like Q. With strong female roles, a blind navigator, and an Android third officer, this feature-length episode proved that “TNG” would truly be a brave new world.

#9: “The Measure of a Man”
Season 2, Episode 9

Data’s rights and freedoms are threatened when a cyberneticist visits the ship. Viewing the android as Starfleet property, Commander Maddox has orders not only to reassign Data, but also to disassemble him. When he refuses, the question of Data’s sentience is put on trial, with an unwilling Riker as prosecutor. Although the first officer successfully proves Data is a machine, the Captain’s passionate defense proves he’s a living one.

#8: “Chain of Command”
Season 6, Episodes 10-11

Caught behind enemy lines on a failed reconnaissance mission, Picard is detained and tortured by a sadistic Cardassian interrogator. The resulting two-parter is a sheer acting tour-de-force from Patrick Stewart. Shackled, starved, and mostly naked, the captain refuses to give in to his captor – even for the promise of his survival. A supporter of Amnesty International, Stewart prepared for his scenes by watching film footage provided by the organization.

#7: “Elementary, Dear Data”
Season 2, Episode 3

To prove that he, too, can solve a Holmes-style whodunit, Geordi asks the Holodeck to create an adversary capable of defeating Data. But the Moriarty hologram becomes self-aware, obtains flight control of the ship, and demands to be freed from the program. Despite the episode’s popularity, legal issues with Sir Arthur Conan-Doyle’s estate ultimately kept this holo-sleuth at bay, until he reappeared in “Ship in a Bottle” four-years later.

#6: “All Good Things…”
Season 7, Episodes 25-26

In a clever bookend to the series, Q resumes the trial he began at Farpoint. Picard sporadically jumps from his present, to 25-years into his future, to seven-years into the past in an effort to solve a mystery that threatens humanity. By replicating and revisiting the show’s early days, the episode has a natural sense of nostalgia. And the captain’s trips to the future assured fans the characters would live on long after the credits rolled on this, its final episode.

#5: “The Inner Light”
Season 5, Episode 25

After being struck by an alien probe, Picard awakens on an alien planet and proceeds to live an entire lifetime among its long-dead civilization, finds a sense of belonging, learns the flute, and even raises a family – which includes Patrick Stewart’s own son, Daniel – and these memories stay with the Starfleet Captain long after he’s revived. Avoiding most of “Trek”’s science-fiction trappings, this low-tech episode is notable for its lasting changes on Picard’s already-multifaceted persona.

#4: “Tapestry”
Season 6, Episode 15

Due to complications with his artificial heart, Captain Picard is killed on an away mission. In an afterlife run by Q, Johnny is granted the chance to tame his surprisingly wild younger self and avoid the bar fight that cost him his real heart. Finding himself alive but with nothing much to live for, Picard learns it was his willingness to take risks that made him who he was.

#3: “Yesterday’s Enterprise”
Season 3, Episode 15

When the Enterprise-C emerges from a temporal rift, history changes around it. The Enterprise-D, with an alive Tasha Yar at tactical, is now locked in a losing war with the Klingons. Based on Guinan’s intuitions about the timeline, a conflicted Picard chooses to send the misplaced ship back – but, he grants Yar a transfer, which allows her a more meaningful death and sets the stage for Denise Crosby’s return as the half-Romulan baddie, Commander Sela.

#2: “Q Who”
Season 2, Episode 16

Usually content with some mischief and the occasional trial, Q changed “Trek” as we knew it his third time on the show, with a trademark snap of his fingers. Warning Picard that humanity wasn’t ready for the dangers of the universe, our favorite demigod brings the Enterprise face-to-face with the Borg. Genuinely menacing, unemotional, and unstoppable, the collective proves to be the deadly foe the Ferengi were not.

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- “The Chase” (Season 6, Episode 20)
- “The Defector” (Season 3, Episode 10)
- “Disaster” (Season 5, Episode 5)

#1: “The Best of Both Worlds”
Season 3, Episode 26 & Season 4, Episode 1

Engaging with a lone Borg cube on-course to Earth, Captain Picard is abducted and assimilated into Locutus. Forced into command, Riker rises to the occasion by fighting an unbeatable enemy armed with intimate Starfleet knowledge. Although much of the action occurs off-screen, the damage rippled throughout the series and set the foundation and tone for “Star Trek: First Contact” as well as the pilot episode of “Deep Space Nine.”

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite episode of “The Next Generation”? For more engaging Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to