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Berlinghoff Rasmussen

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Berlinghoff Rasmussen

Berlinghoff Rasmussen
Gender: Male
Species: Human
Occupation: Inventor
Status: Alive (2368)
Played by: Matt Frewer

Berlinghoff Rasmussen was a 22nd century inventor from New Jersey on Earth. During this period, he confiscated a 26th century time-pod from its rightful user and used it to travel forward in time. His plan was to collect future technology for dismantling and study in hopes of recreating it in his own time and taking credit.

In 2368, Rasmussen visited the USS Enterprise-D claiming to be a historian from the future. Despite his putting on a cheery and eccentric demeanor, the crew had a hard time believing this initially and tried to avoid asking questions regarding the future. Eventually, however, Captain Picard asked for Rasmussen's help in what action he should take regarding a planet the Enterprise-D was trying to save. Rasmussen covered his lie by claiming saving the planet may allow the existence of another Adolf Hitler or Khan Noonien Singh.

During this time, Rasmussen stole various objects to smuggle back to his time, including a phaser. He became enamored with Doctor Beverly Crusher, a feeling she did not return. He also attempted to abduct Data, but the phaser he tried to use had been deactivated. The Enterprise-D senior staff confronted him about the robberies, and Picard ordered Worf to arrest Rasmussen despite his pleas to be let go. The pod vanished, stranding him in the future. Worf led Rasmussen to the brig, with Picard welcoming him to the 24th century and remarking there were "many legitimate historians that would be interested in talking to you." (TNG: "A Matter of Time")

Odo cited the case of Rasmussen to Worf in 2372, when Worf complained of the security breaches on Deep Space 9. (DS9: "Bar Association")

Appendices

Background information

Rasmussen was played by actor Matt Frewer.

The character was originally written for Robin Williams, who opted out in order to play Peter Pan in the movie Hook. (Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion, p. 186)

The script for "A Matter of Time" describes Rasmussen as "a kindly-looking human male in his late forties [...] wearing a drab, nondescript jump suit and a baggy 'lab' jacket" [1]

Apocrypha

Rasmussen appears in the Pocket DS9 novel The Big Game, in which he is released from prison in 2369. He then travels to Deep Space 9, where he participates in a high stakes poker tournament held at Quark's. The novel also mentions that Rasmussen claims to have been on Titanias III during the early 2150s, where he met a Klingon who identified himself as being a member of the House of Duras.

In the Star Trek: Strange New Worlds short story Research, Berlinghoff had the foresight to hide blueprints for the time-travel pod prior to his journey, and is able to retrieve them and successfully rebuild it. He then travels back to the late-20th century, to the home of his ancestor, J. R. Rasmussen. Together, they travel back to 1964, where they relay information about the future to a television writer named Gene Roddenberry. Rasmussen dies sometime before 1999 in an auto accident, while driving to an appointment with producers at Paramount Pictures.

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