Star Trek’s Brent Spiner Laughs At His “Prepostrous Acting” In TNG Dud Episode “Masks” – News Today

Star Trek’s Brent Spiner Laughs At His “Prepostrous Acting” In TNG Dud Episode “Masks”

Brent Spiner realizes one particular Data-focused episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation didn’t quite work, and he laughs about “Masks” today.

Brent Spiner Data Masks Star Trek TNG


  • “Masks” episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation didn’t work due to a nonsensical plot and lack of humor, making it difficult for the actors to keep a straight face.
  • Brent Spiner hilariously played multiple preposterous characters in “Masks,” with other actors laughing at his performance and struggling to get through scenes.
  • Despite the episode’s shortcomings, Brent Spiner’s portrayal of Data and other members of the Soong family remains iconic in the Star Trek franchise.

Throughout Star Trek: The Next Generation, Brent Spiner played many characters beyond the android Lt. Commander Data, but he acknowledges the TNG season 7 episode “Masks” didn’t work. Data spent much of his time on the USS Enterprise-D exploring what it means to be human, and he quickly became one of TNG’s most popular characters. In TNG season 7, episode 17, “Masks,” the Enterprise comes across a comet that houses a vast archive of information from an ancient alien civilization. Data soon begins to manifest various personalities of the people and mythological figures from the alien civilization.

“Masks” had the potential to be a fun Star Trek: The Next Generation episode if the story had embraced its absurdity and inherent humor. Instead, the plot makes little sense and takes itself far too seriously. Even Brent Spiner and Patrick Stewart struggled to keep a straight face while filming the climactic scene between Data and Captain Jean-Luc Picard. On Michael Rosenbaum’s podcast, Inside of You, Brent Spiner spoke about his experience filming “Masks.” Read his quote and watch the full interview below:

The episode we did where I play the 5 characters is an episode called “Masks”… I do some of the most preposterous acting you’ve ever seen in your life in it. I mean, the other actors were laughing in my face at some of the characters I was doing. There was a point, when we finally got to the end of [the episode], Patrick and I were in masks and facing one another at 2 o’clock on Saturday morning. He was playing the god of the sun and I was the goddess of the moon. We couldn’t get through the scene. We were laughing at each other so much that the crew hated us because they wanted to go home! But we couldn’t control it.

Star trek Brent spiner Data lore


Every Brent Spiner Star Trek Character Ranked

Star Trek: The Next Generation actor Brent Spiner is best known for playing Data, but he’s played numerous other androids and Soong family members.

Brent Spiner Has Portrayed Several Members of Star Trek’s Soong Family

Including Data, Lore, and B-4, Brent Spiner has played seven different Soongs.

Brent Spiner laughs about his performance in Star Trek: The Next Generation’s “Masks” today, but he more than makes up for it with his portrayal of Data, Lore, and various members of the Soong family. Data’s family has a complicated history full of brilliant, but law-breaking Soong dynasty (all played by Spiner) who devoted themselves to studying genetics and artificial intelligence. In TNG season 1, episode 13, “Datalore,” the Enterprise visits the planet where Data was created and finds Lore, Data’s evil twin brother. Data and Lore’s creator, Dr. Noonian Soong, makes his first appearance in TNG season 4, episode 3, “Brothers,” when he recalls the androids to his new laboratory.

In Star Trek: Enterprise, Dr. Arik Soong continues to experiment with eugenics after the practice was banned by the Federation. In the 21st century visited by Admiral Picard in Star Trek: Picard season 2, Dr. Adam Soong worked with genetics to create clones of his daughter, including Kore Soong (Isa Briones). In Picard seasons 1 and 3, Dr. Altan Inigo Soong improved upon his father Noonian’s research and built a more advanced synthetic body for Data. Since his beginnings in Star Trek: The Next Generation, Data remains Brent Spiner’s best Star Trek character and undoubtedly represents the best of the Soong family.

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