15. Being Sane in Insane Places

In the fifteenth episode of Beyond Farpoint, Geoff and Baz are joined by returning guest Gemma to look at season six’s Frame of Mind.

Beyond Farpoint
Beyond Farpoint
15. Being Sane in Insane Places

What to expect from episode 15: Frame of Mind


Introductions – and what is real?

Baz and Geoff welcome Gemma back onto the show as they tap into Gemma’s favourite episode of TNG, season six’s Frame of Mind. They discuss what is real and what is delusion during the course of the episode. Baz also asks Geoff if he is able to distinguish real life and reality as he performs in panto!

Proving Riker’s sanity and Frakes’ best performance?

Gemma, Baz and Geoff talk about the opening scene and how we’re already thrown into Riker’s protests of ‘I’m not crazy.’ Gemma talks about the famous study ‘Being sane in Insane Places’ and how long it took sane people to prove they weren’t insane – and how this mirrors Riker’s journey over the course of the episode.

Gemma talks about how effective Frakes is in conveying Riker’s madness. Geoff suggests this is the actor’s best performance on the show as it pushes Riker outside his limits.

Pulpy horror and Star Trek: HR

Baz draws upon Brannon Braga’s love of how pulp horror. They reflect how Frame of Mind uses Dutch angles, lighting and music to play up those horror tropes. The discussion turns to the new crewmember on board and what a Star Trek HR episode might look like!

Shadow selves and reflection therapies

Gemma shares her insights on Troi’s discussion on embracing tour dark side of Jung’s theory of shadow selves. Everyone agrees that reflection therapy using members of the crew is one of the episode’s highlights.

Playing with audience expectations

Baz appreciates the use of non-linear narratives and how the audience can’t trust what we see on screen. Gem discusses the hope of the scene with Susannah Thompson’s character and how it gets destroyed and takes Riker to the next level.

Breaking the mirror

Baz asks how effective the final scenes are in Riker breaking the façade. Geoff loves the effect of Riker shooting the phaser and the illusion shattering. Gem notes that the audience applauding is part of Riker fighting and not giving up. Geoff also asks how long it would have taken Riker to cover – the answer is it’s TV, so everything is fine in the next episode! Everyone appreciates the cathartic nature of Riker dismantling the set and the representation of the trauma he went through!

Episode Credits


  • Baz Greenland
  • Geoff Owen


  • Gemma Greenland


  • Baz Greenland

Small Print

The theme music is "Sunrise on the New World" by Grant Newman, and is licenced by Holosuite Media through Epidemic Sound.

The theme includes a short clip from the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Encounter at Farpoint.

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This podcast is a fan production. All views made are that of the individual(s), and may not represent that of Beyond Farpoint, or the Holosuite Media network.

Beyond Farpoint
Beyond Farpoint
15. Being Sane in Insane Places