Would someone be kind enough to explain me this joke?

I wonder how often Patrick Stewart has Darmok flashbacks when talking to Star Trek fans.

xkcd 902

  • 9
    XKCD can be explained. This usually updates quickly, too. – Jeff May 24 '11 at 15:32
  • Kalenda's is just a joke name created by Randal Monroe for the comic. – Rigas May 24 '11 at 16:39
  • @DavRob60 Agreed. That's part of why I added it as a comment instead of an answer. Also, there was a perfectly good answer already. – Jeff May 24 '11 at 20:48
  • @DavRob60 Wikipedia is general reference and is the first result for a Google search for "Darmok". ("Kalenda" doesn't seem to be general reference, so maybe that's enough for the whole question to not be). – Tony Meyer May 24 '11 at 23:16
  • Read the alt text. – dkuntz2 May 25 '11 at 0:43

This is from the TNG episode "Darmok", where Picard was stuck on a planet with the captain of a vessel whose language was all based on metaphors. So instead of just speaking plainly they recited stories in their history as part of their language. The universal translator would translate the words the alien spoke, but couldn't translate or explain the metaphors the language used.

So basically Picard had to figure out what "Darmok and Jalad at Tanagra" meant.

From Memory Alpha:

It seems that Darmok and Jalad were two legendary travelers, strangers who faced and defeated a common enemy on the island of Tanagra. Picard realizes that Dathon knew of the creature on El-Adrel IV and brought them both here so that they could re-enact the events between Darmok, Jalad and "the Beast" at Tanagra.

I guess this joke is supposed to mean that they hooked up at a party instead of the "enemies becoming friends" part of the original story, Kalenda seems to be made up in the comic as I don't see a reference to it in the episode.

  • 3
    +1 for making want to watch Darmok again when I get home. – Kalessin May 24 '11 at 15:21
  • Although this answer explains the joke. It does not provide an answer to the question "who". – Sinan May 24 '11 at 15:43
  • @Sinan I've updated my answer to add more detail. – Jorge Castro May 24 '11 at 15:54
  • If their language is all based on metaphors, "Wiiiiiink" mean what? – DavRob60 May 24 '11 at 16:14
  • 5
    It's a sound effect to make it clear the alien captain is winking. – user1027 May 24 '11 at 17:01

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