Star Trek: First Contact

Question: How did the Phoenix land on Earth after the warp display for the Vulcans? It looked like a non-reusable rocket to me.

Answer: It was never shown or explained how they landed, so any answer would be a guess. This is set in the future (mid-21st Century), so there could have been new rocket technology.

raywest

Answer: While the main fuselage was a re-purposed intercontinental ballistic missile, and they separated from the ascent stage of the rocket, the payload section housed two deployable prototype warp nacelles capable of achieving lightspeed. Beyond that, the payload also contained the prototype warp core (which was powered by matter/antimatter annihilation), the warp core coolant, elaborate magnetic-containment systems, and probably even impulse drive and landing thrusters (It kind of goes without saying that thruster and impulse technology would have existed before warp technology). There was no space left over in the payload section for conventional rocket propellant, and Zefram Cochrane's enormously-expensive and one-of-a-kind warp components would not be expendable; so he must have devised a way to safely bring the Phoenix down for re-use. Since the Phoenix's return and landing were never addressed in the film, my assumption is that the payload section was powered entirely by the warp core, including its impulse drive and landing thrusters.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: Deanna Troi states that they will get rid of poverty, disease, and war within next 50 years. How would they get rid of things like autism, ADHD, or dyslexia? Aren't those medical conditions that cannot be cured?

Answer: Troi says that future medical research is far more advanced and humanity has learned to work together and overcome many social problems without being specific. It's unknown how these conditions will be cured, but possibly through advanced gene therapy, new drugs, new surgical techniques, etc.

raywest

Answer: The things you listed are not diseases, they are conditions. It is more plausible that she was referring to things like cancer, diabetes, stroke, and other similar disorders which, at some point in time, there might be a cure.

Troi said poverty disease war would all be gone within the next 50 years. I thought she meant things like autism ADHD and dyslexia would be gone too not just disease.

No, that's why she said disease.

Well the movie tells us that all bad things on earth would be gone within the next 50 years. I thought that would have included conditions like autism dyslexia or ADHD as well as disease.

The movie doesn't say "all bad things." She specifically says "disease." In other words things that can be cured, get cured. No doubt some things will be curable that we currently can't cure, and some things will never be curable. You're overanalysing a line used simply to explain that humanity advances itself in a short space of time.

Jon Sandys

Question: One of the crew members tells Worf that the Borg control decks 26 to 11, and stopped when they reached deck 11. Picard says, "We can't get to deflector control or a shuttle craft." I did some research, and the main shuttle bay is on deck 6. So why can't they get to a shuttlecraft? Would this be a plot hole?

Answer: The borg took control of specific areas of the ship as part of their plan. This included deflector control and the shuttle bay.

My mistake. The main shuttle bay is around decks 5 and 6. The Borg didn't take control of those decks until after the beacon was destroyed.

Question: How can Data miss the "Phoenix" after locking on the quantum torpedoes just by delaying pressing the button for a second. They were locked on, after all.

Answer: Data's quite intelligent enough to have caused the torpedoes to miss - the most likely circumstance is that they were never actually locked onto the Phoenix, but he altered the display to make it appear as if they were. He then deliberately fired them along a trajectory that would look like the correct one until the last minute, giving him time to get into position to break the plasma tanks.

Tailkinker

Question: Why didn't they just tell Cochrane about the Borg? Why didn't Cochrane want to be famous?

Answer: Telling him about the Borg would violate the Prime Directive by giving too much information about the future. The Borg were not supposed to be in that timeline, unlike the Vulcans who, historically, made First Contact with humans at that time. Cochrane does not say why he doesn't want to be famous. There are many reasons people shun celebrity-some are shy and prefer privacy, others don't want to deal with the pressure of having to live up to a reputation that may be inaccurate, it interferes with the work they are trying to achieve, and so on.

raywest

Actually, they did tell him about the Borg. You can tell they told him about the Borg because he said a group of cybernetic creatures from the future have traveled back through time to enslave the human race.

They told him a general story about what's going on. They don't reveal their name, where they are from or their nature.

lionhead

What harm could telling Cochrane about the Borg possibly do?

That could potentially change the timeline too much. They want to preserve the timeline they came from.

lionhead

I'd care more about saving humans from being killed, or enslaved, than about preserving timelines.

It might set humanity on the wrong path, that will lead to more deaths. For example, it could prevent the federation alliance. One can only imagine how the Alpha quadrant will survive Romulan, Klingon and Dominion attacks without the alliance.

lionhead

"Telling him about the Borg would violate the prime directive by giving information about the future." Which is more important, obeying the prime directive, or stopping the Borg from enslaving the human race?

They are first attempting to give as little information as possible to anyone in the past in an attempt to follow the Temporal Prime Directive. Any small change could have larger changes in the future via the butterfly effect.

LorgSkyegon

Answer: When Riker and Cochrane are doing the pre-flight check in the ship, Riker is talking about the historical significance of this launch. Cochrance tells him to shut up, he is tired of everyone he meets telling him what a hero he is, and what this launch means to mankind. He says, "You want why I want I'm doing this. Money and women. I want to buy an island and be served drinks by native girls. I hate space travel. I take trains." However, once the Vulcans land, he truly realises what he's done.

Answer: Cochrane wanted to be famous but in order to get money and women. Cochrane didn't want the hero title and was sick of hearing about all the good he had done.

Answer: Picard says that the Borg knew their ship was doomed and the Enterprise's shields were down, and they somehow transported over without being detected.

Bishop73

Question: Why is the plasma coolant tank breakable? Why are there clear windows? What if a crew member accidentally hit it with something that could easily break the window and cause plasma coolant to spill out?

Answer: It's likely made of transparent aluminum so the crew can easily see its condition. Transparent aluminum has greater strength than materials we use for transparency. Remember, too, that it was Data who broke it. The rest of the crew wouldn't have the physical strength to break it.

Question: In the scene where random crewmen are being led to their assimilation, at about 00:40:55 there is a woman with flyaway curly hair being led by a drone, who bears a striking resemblance to Alice Krige, later to appear as the Borg Queen. Seeing as the Borg are cut off from the rest of the Collective, could it be that they chose an Enterprise crewman to be the "face" of the Borg? Or is this just a cameo on the part of Ms. Krige?

Answer: After reviewing the film it is definitely NOT Alice Krige. The woman bears some similarity but is much younger. Also, as we see in Picard's flashbacks, the Borg Queen was present at the events of Wolf 359.

Question: If the Borg can survive in the vacuum of space without suits (decompression liquefying their organic skin aside), Hawk also should've been able to once assimilated. They obviously had to take his suit off to assimilate him, but why did they put it back on him before sending him back out to help his new comrades?

Answer: He had only just been assimilated and may not have yet have been modified with more specialized Borg technology that allowed the drones to survive in open space using a force field.

raywest

Answer: They assimilated him through his suit.

Question: How did making contact with aliens bring an end to poverty, disease, and war? Even after the Third World War, there still would have been millions of people who wanted wars on earth, and they would find ways to commit attacks that would start wars on earth, and get away with it, by pretending to help bring an end to wars, poverty, and disease, by secretly stealing alien technology, and by attacking homes, and destroying replicators once every citizen on earth had one, and by telling the aliens to leave earth and never return, and they would have been no way to catch everyone who wanted wars on earth.

Answer: By realizing that humanity was not alone in the universe, it gave them hope and something new to strive for, leading to a change in behavior.

Greg Dwyer

Answer: The Vulcans introduced the human race to subspace scanner and transporter technology, enabling instantaneous communications, surveillance, deployment and security enforcement planet-wide. Thus, the vast majority of mankind's tribal squabbling was eliminated.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: Picard kills crew members who have only just been assimilated and justifies it by saying something along the lines of they will be better off dead and inferring that they will be put out of their misery. Yet Picard himself was assimilated and returned to normal and survived. Why is it different for Picard?

Answer: The Borg left Picard sentient to utilize his Starfleet knowledge, to communicate with the Borg queen, and act as the liaison with the Enterprise. Seeing and interacting with their captain as a Borg would have a debilitating effect on the crew. The less-valuable crew members were turned into fully compliant drones. Also, the Enterprise crew were not in their own time and were actively fighting the Borg for their survival and to save the future of humanity. The Borg had infiltrated the Enterprise, so there was no time, opportunity, or means to try and save any assimilated crew.

raywest

Question: Why do Borg always attack earth with only one single ship? We already know from ST: Voyager that Borg have so many ships in the delta-quadrant that they sometimes attack with 10 or more ships at the same time. Why don't they just send 2 or 3 of their cubes next time? Borg knows that the Federation needed their very last resources and a lot of luck to defeat the Borg Cube last time (Battle of Wolf359). So 2 ships at least should do the job this time. Instead they again send one cube and risk defeat.

Goekhan

Answer: The Borg think like machines. They have calculated that one cube is enough to conquer Earth so they send one cube. Both times they were defeated because of incalculable events. Both times they didn't have a reason to send more than one cube.

lionhead

This is wrong. Borg do have a big reason to send more than one cube the second time. They know that Locutus (Picard) is there somewhere and can log-in into the Borg hive when Borg are near him. He received visions from the Borg shortly before battle and calculated with this information "unimportant" weak-spots which destroyed the second Borg cube. If someone knows your weak spots and this someone is nearby, then Borgs should be more precautious than last time.

Goekhan

The Enterprise was not at the battle, the Borg knew that, Picard went in against orders and intervened. This time the Borg took more than just a cube anyway, they took time travel with them. They probably had it as a contingency plan.

lionhead

The contingency plan is even more brainless, explaining one plot hole with another one. There is absolutely no need to fly into the earths atmosphere to start their time machine. They could've done it even more safely before entering federation territory.

Goekhan

That doesn't make any sense. They didn't have to enter the atmosphere, I don't even think they did. The sphere escaped the exploding cube and almost immediately opened a vortex. Also, saying that they "could have done it even more safely before entering federation space" is nonsense since they needed to be in federation space for the contingency plan anyway. Nothing safer about it doing it outside of federation space, just takes more time.

lionhead

Answer: The Borg don't care that much about Earth, or losing a single cube. They are mostly testing the water before fully expanding towards the Alpha Quadrant. Their space is in the Delta Quadrant and still a long way from expanding into the Alpha Quadrant.

Not entirely true because the Borg queen was on board the cube, and they had a contingency plan to go back in time, making their efforts quite elaborate. They have attacked Earth twice now, because they know about it from the Enterprise (and Q) and plan on conquering it and expand into the Alpha Quadrant. A cube is equivalent to an entire fleet of ships and Picard accurately calls this action by the Borg an invasion (the second one).

lionhead

Character mistake: When Picard is explaining the Enterprise to Lily he states that it has 24 decks. Yet earlier on, a crewman had reported to Worf that the Borg had taken over "decks 26 up to 11".

More mistakes in Star Trek: First Contact

William Riker: Someone once said, "Don't try to be a great man. Just be a man, and let history make its own judgment."
Zefram Cochrane: That's rhetorical nonsense! Who said that?
William Riker: You did! Ten years from now.

More quotes from Star Trek: First Contact

Trivia: The set that they use as sickbay on the Enterprise is the same set used as sickbay on Star Trek Voyager. In fact, the character of the holographic doctor is played by Robert Picardo, who starred as Voyager's holographic doc.

More trivia for Star Trek: First Contact

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.