Star Trek the Next Generation Episode Review: "Realm of Fear"

by StevenHelmer

A review of the season 6 television episode that first aired September 1992.

Synopsis: On his way back from an away team investigation, Lt. Barclay (Dwight Schultz) sees something in the transporter beam. His crew mates are quick to dismiss his report, believing it is caused by his overall fear of using a transporter. However, as his grows increasingly agitated following the event, he begins to believe there is more going on.


I haven't been watching many classic TV reruns recently, mostly because the kids are home from school and usually have cartoons on. However, I had the house to myself at lunch today and was able to watch this episode of "Star Trek the Next Generation."

I've seen this particular episode in the past. However, it had been a while and I didn't remember much about it as a result. After re-watching it, I have to say it is one of the better episodes from this series.

Dwight Schultz is always entertaining in his Lt. Barclay role, bringing a good mix of seriousness and comedy. Barclay is very personable as a result and, because of that, it does make you care when something happens to him, as was the case in this episode.

Of course, it also helped that I could relate to this episode to begin with. I hate flying. This isn't a random fear and is related to me being in a plane that came very close to crashing. Yet, when I tell people about it, I get the same tired story about how "statistically" it's the safest way to travel. Hearing the same arguments made about the transporter as Barclay pointed out very real scenarios was something that almost made me feel I was in that room with him.

The mystery about what he sees in the transporter beam is also a good one. Since he is paranoid (along with many other personality quirks) about traveling that way, it was very possible he was just imagining the whole thing.

And, even if he wasn't, there was still a question about what kind of life could exist inside the transporter like that and not be detected. As someone who likes mysteries, this was something I definitely did enjoy.

Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 6

The complete sixth season of the TV series Star Trek: The Next Generation.

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Final Opinion

This is one of my favorite episodes from this series because, along with the great mystery, there were times when I felt like I was in Lt. Barclay's shoes. It's one that is worth watching.

My Grade: A

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Updated: 08/09/2016, StevenHelmer
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