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Heart of Glory (episode)

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"Heart of Glory"
TNG, Episode 1x20
Production number: 40271-120
First aired: 21 March 1988
19th of 176 produced in TNG
19th of 176 released in TNG
  {{{nNthReleasedInSeries_Remastered}}}th of 176 released in TNG Remastered  
124th of 728 released in all
KlingonDeathRitual
Teleplay By
Maurice Hurley

Story By
Maurice Hurley and Herbert Wright & D.C. Fontana

Directed By
Rob Bowman
41503.7 (2364)
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Worf's loyalties to Starfleet are tested when three fugitive Klingons come on board the Enterprise-D.

Summary Edit

TeaserEdit

Starfleet Command sends a communication to the USS Enterprise-D about a disturbance in the Neutral Zone, a battle. There are no Federation vessels in the area, and William T. Riker suggests that the Romulans are involved. On arriving at the location of the battle, they find a vessel adrift without power. It is identified as the Talarian freighter Batris.

Act OneEdit

Ken Gildin, Heart of Glory

Geordi's view of Data

Worf detects life signs, so Captain Picard orders Commander Riker to take an away team over. He brings Data and Geordi La Forge with him, giving La Forge a chance to test out his visual acuity transmitter. The device transmits what his VISOR sees, but only has a range of a few kilometers.

The away team beams over, and finds the ship in ruins. La Forge switches on the transmitter, and the viewscreen shows an image of flashing colors and indistinct shapes. Picard is intrigued by the images, and asks La Forge how he is able to filter out all the extra information. La Forge compares it to listening to an individual conversation in a noisy room; mentally "filtering out" information that isn't wanted. Picard also has trouble identifying Riker and Data. They move off down the corridor, dodging falling beams amid smoke and gas. La Forge spots a fissure in the bulkhead, and reckons they only have five minutes until the hull breaches. The bridge loses the transmission from the VISOR.

They locate the survivors on the far side of the engine core. Data goes across on his own, to minimize the risk to the others. He returns, telling them that the door to the compartment is jammed. The others run over, and Data pulls open the door. Inside are three Klingons, one badly injured.

Act TwoEdit

Rescued Klingon crew

Rescued in the nick of time

They all make their way out of the engineering section, and Tasha Yar tries to get a lock on them. She has difficulty, and fails the first time, but then manages to beam them out just as the ship explodes.

The survivors are brought to sickbay, and Picard and Worf go to meet them. Dr. Crusher says the injured Klingon is in critical condition. The others introduce themselves as Commander Korris and Lieutenant Konmel. They say they were being transported on the freighter when a Ferengi cruiser attacked them. Worf says the weapons were Klingon. They agree, but reiterate that the ship was Ferengi. They took control at the captain's request, and pretended to surrender, but when the Ferengi dropped their shields they destroyed the cruiser with merculite rockets. Worf shows them to their quarters, but Picard is suspicious as to why they were on the freighter in the first place.

In the Klingons' quarters, they get something to eat. Worf tells them he is the only Klingon in Starfleet, and they mock him, saying he has become soft and docile living amongst Humans. Then they reassure him, telling him they are only trying to anger him to see if it is still possible. Then the captain calls from sickbay, where the third Klingon, Kunivas, is dying. They go to sickbay, and Korris opens Kunivas' eyes and looks into them. Then all three howl at the ceiling. They leave again, Korris telling Crusher that the body is now only an empty shell, and to treat it as such.

Act ThreeEdit

Worf asks the pair what really happened, and they in turn ask Worf how he came to be where he is. He tells them that he was at Khitomer as a child when it was attacked by the Romulans. He was buried under some rubble, but survived to be rescued by a Starfleet officer, who brought him home with him. He was raised as his son at the Gault colony, and when they were old enough, he and his foster brother attended the Academy. His brother hated it and dropped out; Worf stayed. Korris and Konmel tell him that he was shunned and misunderstood all his life, and even now he is driven by something inside, even though there are no other Klingons around. Worf admits those feelings are still there, but that he is able to control them. They say that is the mark of a warrior. Korris says that the peace was like a living death to them, so they commandeered a freighter, in search of somewhere they could live as warriors. The ship they destroyed was a Klingon cruiser, and they claim that Klingons have been corrupted by peace.

Starfleet security team, 2364

The cavalry arrives

Korris then asks to be shown around the ship. On the bridge, Data detects a vessel approaching. He comments that this was the first time outsiders have witnessed the Klingon death ritual. The howling is a warning to the afterlife that a Klingon warrior is about to arrive. The approaching ship is in visual range – it is a Klingon cruiser. Picard hails and Commander K'Nera answers. Picard tells him they rescued three Klingons. K'Nera asks if that is all that is left of the T'Acog. Picard tells him that they were on the freighter and K'Nera replies that they are criminals who have stolen a freighter and destroyed a cruiser. He wants them delivered to him when he arrives.

Picard sends a security team led by Yar to arrest the fugitives. They are in a corridor with Worf when the team arrives. Worf asks what's going on. The Klingons appeal to Worf for help, saying he is one of them.

Act FourEdit

Potential hostage situation

"Cowards take hostages. Klingons do not."

Then, a door opens and a small girl runs into the corridor. Korris picks her up, and after a moment hands her to Worf. Yar's team arrests them and brings them to the brig. Yar says she was afraid she was going to have a hostage situation, but Worf replies that Klingons don't take hostages, that it's a cowardly thing to do.

The prisoners are in the brig when the Klingon ship arrives. K'Nera tells Picard that they will be tried and executed for their crimes. Worf appeals to him, saying their words have stirred something inside him, and asking him to allow them to die an honorable death on a remote planet. K'Nera says he feels the same, but he must follow orders. In the brig, Korris and Konmel assemble a disruptor from their belts and other parts of their uniform. They disable the force field and kill a guard. The second guard hits Konmel three times before he dies, but then Korris kills him too. He runs, and Yar arrives on the scene. She informs the captain what has happened. Korris gets to engineering and climbs onto the second level around the core. He points his phaser at the dilithium crystal chamber and says he will only talk to Worf.

Act FiveEdit

Worf and Picard go down to engineering. Yar wants to wait him out, but Worf says he WILL fire his phaser the moment he feels the situation is not to his advantage, destroying them all. Worf goes up to talk to Korris. He wants Worf to separate the ship and come with him in the stardrive section. Worf says that won't happen. He pulls out his phaser and points it at Korris. He can't believe what is happening and appeals again to Worf.

Worf death yell

Worf yells for Korris

Worf tells him he is looking for battles in the wrong place, the true test of a warrior being within himself. He hasn't mentioned duty, honor, or loyalty, the things a true warrior must have. Korris says he has become weak like the Humans, and goes to shoot Worf. Worf phasers him first, mortally wounding him as well as sending him reeling forwards and down through the glass floor for the second level. Worf returns down, and performs the death ritual for Korris.

He and Picard return to the bridge and tell K'Nera that the fugitives are all dead. Worf tells him that they died well. He invites Worf to join his ship when he is finished aboard the Enterprise. Worf says he would be honored. K'Nera leaves, and Worf assures Captain Picard he doesn't want to leave the Enterprise, he was just being polite. Picard replies that the bridge wouldn't be the same without him.

Memorable QuotesEdit

"Is there any special arrangements you would like for the body?"
"It is only a empty shell now, please treat it as such."

- Beverly Crusher and Korris


"And Number One? Everything about this seems wrong."
"Agreed, it smells like a trap. Let's go."

- Picard to Riker, shortly before he beams over to the Batris


"Now, I'm beginning to understand him."

- Picard, after viewing what Geordi La Forge sees through his VISOR on the Enterprise's viewscreen


"What do you see, Number One?
"Klingons."

- Picard and Riker, finding Klingons on the Batris


"Cowards take hostages, Klingons do not."

- Worf


"What magnificent battles we could have at the helm of this ship."
"Perhaps your dreams of glory no longer fit the time, they belong buried with the past."
"Standing here we will never know."

- Korris, Worf and Konmel


"The true test of a warrior is not without, it is within."

- Worf


"Where are the words: duty, honor, loyalty, without which a warrior is nothing?"

- Worf

Background information Edit

Production history Edit

Production Edit

Robert Bauer and Michael Dorn

Robert Bauer and Michael Dorn on the set

Continuity Edit

  • La Forge's VISOR is tied into the Enterprise's viewscreen during the away mission, allowing the bridge crew to see what he saw. It wasn't used again until "The Mind's Eye", although Dr. Tolian Soran later used it against the Enterprise in Star Trek Generations. The appearance of images varied in each occurrence, so much so that it seems no different than normal visual perception in Generations.
  • This episode marks the first time that we see a Klingon death ritual. It is also the first time in the series we see Klingons in their full body armor.
  • The Klingon battle cruiser is stock footage from Star Trek: The Motion Picture.
  • This episode alludes to the fact that some Klingons are not happy about being at peace with the Federation. The back wall of K'Nera's bridge featured both the Federation and Klingon emblems, indicating the alliance.
  • While in sickbay, Captain Picard mistakenly refers to the freighter they encountered as a Terrelian ship rather than a Talarian ship.
  • While in the engine room, Korris says the following: "I would rather die here than let the traitors of Kling pick the meat from my bones." The writer of that line intended for Kling to be the name of the Klingon homeworld, but was later officially changed to Qo'noS in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, since it was decided that Kling sounded a bit odd. The Star Trek Encyclopedia lists Kling as the name of the First City, but it isn't considered canon since that reference was never in any episode.
  • This episode marks the first reference to the Talarians, who did not appear until the TNG Season 4 episode "Suddenly Human".

Reception Edit

  • Director Rob Bowman recalls, "It was a very late script that [co-executive producer] Maurice Hurley wrote in two days. I read it and was pretty blown away. That episode was, I think, one of the easiest of my shows, because everything worked so well. Once I got the script, ideas on how things should look came very quickly. For instance, the final battle in Engineering was supposed to be played on the first deck. Worf shoots the Klingon, he falls down and that's it. However, nobody had shot vertically in the chamber before, so we did some things in the end with the camera that hadn't been done on the show. One thing I added is that it took three phaser hits to take care of a Klingon. I wanted to make these guys as tough and as bad as I could. I think it helped to give the show balls. That episode to me, had lots of strength." ("Rob Bowman - Director of a Dozen", The Official Star Trek: The Next Generation Magazine Vol. 10, pp. 17-18)
  • A mission report by Will Murray for this episode was published in The Official Star Trek: The Next Generation Magazine Vol. 5, pp. 54-56.

Video and DVD releases Edit

Links and references Edit

Starring Edit

Also starring Edit

Guest stars Edit

Featuring Edit

Uncredited co-stars Edit

Stunt doubles Edit

Stand-ins and photo doubles Edit

References Edit

adrenaline; Age of Inclusion; android; away team; Batris; bulkhead; cloaking device; deuterium; dilithium crystal chamber; Ferengi; Ferengi cruiser; freighter; Gault colony; Halee system; Humans; hypospray; K'Nera's battle cruiser; Khitomer; Khitomer Massacre; kilometer; Kling; Klingons; Klingon cruiser; Klingon death ritual; Klingon Defense Force; Klingonese; K't'inga-class; life support; M-Zed-5; Merculite rocket; metal fatigue; Milky Way Galaxy; Neutral Zone; O'mat Gri T'M pffiots; Quadrant 9; Rozhenko, Helena; Rozhenko, Nikolai; Rozhenko, Sergey; saucer separation; sector; security team; Security Three; spectrograph; Starbase 84; Starfleet Academy; subspace frequency; T'Acog, IKS; Talarians; Talarian freighter; tour of duty; Transporter Room 3; tricorder; Romulans; VISOR; visual acuity transmitter; warp core; warp drive

Log entries Edit

External links Edit


Previous episode:
"Coming of Age"
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Season 1
Next episode:
"The Arsenal of Freedom"

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