Sci-Fi’s Unsung Heroes #53,627 – Ensign Ro Laren

Posted: August 3, 2009 in Sci-Fi
Tags: , , ,

Ro_LarenRo Laren was a short-lived character in Star Trek-The Next Generation,starring in 8 episodes,and played by Michelle Forbes.

And why is she an unsung hero?

Because in most of them,she is in the mother of all bad moods.

This doesn’t go down well with the happy-clappy Enterprise crew,as you can imagine.

This girl has issues.

Like most Bajorans,she hated the Cardassians,as she was forced to watch them torture her father to death when she was a child.

Heavy stuff for Star Trek,where most characters have lived almost charmed lives being the best at everything,and being really nice and wonderful and all that.

In her first episode,entitled “Ensign Ro” (see what they did there?),she immediately pisses off Picard when she corrects him on the proper way to say her name.(The Bajorans put their family name first,and so is addressed as Ro Laren rather than Laren Ro,as Picard thinks….concentrate,I may be asking questions.)

Obviously nobody told her the cardinal rule for serving on the Enterprise….don’t talk back to the bald guy.

Riker,bless him,hates her the minute he sets eyes on her,because he is gagging to give her one,but obviously she’s having none of it.You’ve gotta love her just for that.Although,in the episode “Conundrum”,when the crew lose their memories,Ro gets it in to her head that she and Riker are romantically linked.Sadly,after everyone gets their memories back,old Will can’t remember if anything happened between them.Ha ha…the poor sod.

It turns out,Ro has been in the slammer after disobeying orders on an away mission to one of those unrealistic Star Trek-type planets which resulted in the deaths of 8 people (That’ll teach them to beam down wearing red shirts.)

Her finest hour comes in the episode “Disaster”.Some great big space accident knackers the Enterprise,leaving Ro,Chief O’Brien and Counsellor Troi on the bridge with no extras to die instead of them.Poised to take command,O’Brien drops a bombshell.Actually Counsellor Troi,you know,that woman who sits next to Picard in a dangerously tight jumpsuit getting all emotional,is in charge,having attained the rank of Lieutenant Commander….by mistake,one would imagine.

Cue major strop.

The trouble is,Troi doesn’t know her photon torpedos from her dilithium crystals,and Ro knows this,and so pressures Troi to separate the drive section (the bit with the engine) from the saucer section (the big round bit on top) and generally blinding her with science in the hope she’ll give up command to her.But Troi puts her foot down and saves everybody in time for tea…which is probably a good thing because if Ro had been in charge then most likely everybody would have been dead-ed.

She’s like that.

In fact,she is only really happy in the episode “The Next Phase” when she actually thinks she’s died herself.She loves it,despite the fact she has to spend eternity with Geordi La Forge,who is the single most boring person on the ship.Anyway,they both get better and Ro even starts to smile a bit…probably in relief from not having to talk to La Forge until the end of time.

In her final episode,”Preemptive Strike”,Ro shows her true colours and throws her lot in with the Maquis,a group of rebels fighting against the Cardassians,betraying Picard and the Federation.This is a much more satisfying ending for the character;having her turn into just another identical crew member would have ruined the character…she had to go.She even pulls a phaser on Riker,but sadly doesn’t roast him….that would have been fantastic.

Ensign Ro Laren..I salute you,for not being nice to people,for not giving in to Riker’s advances,and being happy to be dead!

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Comments
  1. BunnyNut says:

    What was the episode called when Picard, Guinan and Ro were turned into kids?? Rascals, I think. Guinan And Ro were jumping on the beds in the end before they had to ‘grow up’ again. Ro was a brilliant character, pretty underused really. Once again, great blog!

  2. SyssA says:

    Ro Laren, you are…the best of the best. Thank you for existing. It made my life. I desperately wish she was in more than 8 episodes.

  3. […] Sci-Fi’s Unsung Heroes #53,627 – Ensign Ro Laren August 2009 2 comments 4 […]

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