"I am Locutus of Borg. Resistance is futile. Your life, as it has been, is over. From this time forward, you will service us."
Fewer words sent a chill down the spine of millions of Trekkies on the night of June 18, 1990, toward the conclusion of "The Best of Both Worlds, Part I," the third season finale of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Not since James T. Kirk engaged Khan Noonien Singh in the Mutara Nebula in 1982's Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan had a crew of the USS Enterprise engaged in such high-stakes warfare - and the result was not only one of the finest moments in Trek history, but in all of television.
"The Best of Both Worlds" found Enterprise Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and crew face to face with the fearsome alien race known as The Borg. Singularly focused on conquering Earth and forcing it into its own collectivist image, the season-ending cliffhanger climaxed with Picard, fully overtaken by The Borg, announcing his intentions to assimilate his own crew, to which first officer Lt. Riker (Jonathan Frakes) delivers an equally chilling reply: "Mr. Worf, fire."
Of course, Picard would break free of The Borg's bonds when the fourth season commenced, and the TNG-era crew enjoyed a total of seven seasons and four films as the dominant faces of Trek. But it would be hard to escape the image of Picard as Locutus; the ordeal had great repercussions throughout the series' history, both in Trek canon and in real life. "The Best of Both Worlds" earned two Emmy Awards and was named among the 100 greatest television episodes and 100 greatest television moments by TV Guide. Upon the recent Blu-Ray release of TNG's third season, the two-part episode was even remastered, re-edited and released as a limited theatrical feature.
With Star Trek still a hot property in pop culture (J.J. Abrams' second film in the series, Star Trek Into Darkness, opened in theatres several weeks ago), it's a pleasure to see that Ron Jones' captivating score to "The Best of Both Worlds" is being newly remastered and expanded on CD by GNP Crescendo Records. Long associated with Trek soundtracks, GNP's license of the soundtrack to the episode (the second-ever release of TNG music on CD more than 20 years ago) meant its exclusion from even Film Score Monthly's exhaustive box set of TNG music, or La-La Land's follow-up four-disc anthology.
But the label, long thought dormant by most Trekkies, has come back in a big way, expanding the series' film scores it still maintains the rights to, and has now added an expanded "Best of Both Worlds" soundtrack disc to its catalogue. All the episode's music is included in remastered form, including several short but pivotal cues arriving to CD for the first time. The package is also augmented with a 16-page booklet of liner notes detailing the episode's production and scoring, newly written by Film Score Monthly founder Lukas Kendall and writer John Takis.
The score to "The Best of Both Worlds" is now available to order from GNP; links and track details are below.
Ron Jones, Star Trek: The Next Generation - The Best of Both Worlds Part I & II: Original Television Soundtrack (Expanded Edition) (originally released as GNP Crescendo GNPD-8026, 1991 - reissued GNP Crescendo GNPD-8083, 2013)
- Star Trek: The Next Generation Main Title
- New Providence
- Not Ready/Job Grabber/Early Worm/No Doubt *
- Preparations/What Do You Want?/Fatigue/Hansen's Message **
- Borg Engaged
- First Attack/Looks/Tell It Like It Is **
- Contemplations *
- Borg Take Picard/Death is Irrelevant/His Place **
- Away Team Ready/On The Borg Ship/Nodes
- Captain Borg
- Energy Weapon Fails
- Repairs/Humanity Taken **
- Contact Lost
- Repairs Complete/Cemetery of Dead Ships *
- Currents *
- Sitting Ducks/Borg Reach Saturn *
- The Link
- Sleep Command/Destruct Mode/Picard is Back **
- Picard's Nightmare
- Star Trek: The Next Generation End Title (3rd Season - Long Version)
* indicates previously unreleased track. ** indicates track with previously unreleased material.
Tracks 1-10 from Part I. Tracks 11-21 from Part II.
Track 1 contains "Theme from Star Trek: The Original Series" written by Alexander Courage
Tracks 1 and 21 contains "Theme from Star Trek: The Motion Picture" written by Jerry Goldsmith.