This is where it’s supposed to get good, right?
The Enterprise responds to a distress signal from one of the farthest colonies. They beam down and find… nothing. A huge hole where a town should have been.
An Admiral shows up, because that’s what happens with 900 people disappear. He and his protégé are convinced it’s the Borg. She is young and blonde because we have to get Riker interested in the plot somehow. Also, “strong” women are written and/or played as straight up career bitches at this point in TV history, so I don’t know if I am supposed to like Lieutenant Commander Shelby or want to stuff her out an airlock. And then the point where Riker stops what he is doing and makes sure to ask the male Admiral to join his poker group but does NOT ask the chick whom he is escorting to the actual crimey-wimey stuff? Not sexist at all, writers.
So now there’s a stupid subplot about how Shelby should be the new Number 2 on the Enterprise because Riker has been offered his own commission and “This is the third time we’ve pulled out the Captain’s chair for Riker. He just won’t sit down.” Did you turn the chair around? Because Riker don’t sit on no regular facin’ chair.
Blah-blah-techonbabble-we-can’t-beat-the-Borg. They hail Picard by name and demand he surrender. He doesn’t, so they kidnap him instead. As the leader of “the strongest ship in the fleet,” the Borg tell Picard he speaks for his people. This leads to awesome philosophical one-liners:
“Strength is irrelevant. Resistance is futile.”
“My culture is based on freedom and self determination!”
“Freedom is irrelevant. Self determination is irrelevant.”
“Oprah’s book club is irrelevant. You should chose your own reading materials based on your tastes.”
“Donald Trump is irrelevant. It is ridiculous to us that you ever took him seriously.”
“Death is irrelevant.”
“Ben Carson is futile.”
Data, Crusher, Worf, and Shelby beam over to the Borg ship to find Picard. If you guessed “Five and a half minutes until Worf is knocked out by a stiff breeze,” you have won the Klingons Are Feeble” lottery.
Picard is now Locutus of Borg. Riker contemplates blowing him up on sheer principle.