In "Who Watches the Watchers," Deanna and Riker have subcutaneous communicators implanted in their skin. In the episode "First Contact," Riker loses his combadge. Is there a reason why they didn't inject subcutaneous communicators for all missions?

  • 2
    because then it would have been a really short episode.
    – Paul L
    Jul 26, 2016 at 14:24
  • 1
    No need for this silliness. He obviously wants an in-universe explanation. Jul 26, 2016 at 19:29
  • 2
    @T-1000'sSon - Lighten up. Comments aren't meant to be answers and a little frivolity is perfectly acceptable.
    – Valorum
    Jul 26, 2016 at 19:50
  • for @T-1000'sSon: meta.scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/1289/…
    – NKCampbell
    Jul 26, 2016 at 19:54
  • I am sorry, sir. Jul 26, 2016 at 21:53

1 Answer 1


Riker's visit to Malcor 3 was only intended to be a very short one which is why his hands and feet were merely hidden by clothing as opposed to being altered to match the native species' features along with his face while the long term observation team members were more comprehensively disguised.

Most likely this also accounts for no one taking to time to implant a communicator.

  • His visit in Who Watchers The Watchers was also intended to not be a long stay, but they still had time to plant a communicator
    – Pioneer
    Jul 26, 2016 at 20:58
  • That was because he and Troi were intending to interact with the locals and concealing the communicators in that environment would be much more difficult than on Malcor where he could simply duck in an alley and make the call. Put simply the necessity wasn't there, the only time he'd need a communicator would be calling for beamout and he would of course already have gotten away from observers for that.
    – IG_42
    Jul 26, 2016 at 21:07
  • yes, but he I presumed he had a ut implant for the mission to malcor 3, as his combadge with it unit is taken away. If they took the time to impact this, why not a communicator. The question also remains, why not install it just in case, surely simulations have shown such circumstances?
    – Pioneer
    Jul 26, 2016 at 21:18
  • Always such fun trying to justify the writer's inconsistencies. The medics could have taken the time to disguise Riker properly and give him all the kit but it simply seems that due to the short visit they couldn't be arsed. My answer lacking specific evidence uses the same principle behind the rest of the normal disguise not being applied.
    – IG_42
    Jul 26, 2016 at 21:31

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