I'm fairly sure this was a Star Trek episode. A character went through a horrible prison experience for years, only to find out when he woke up that merely months had passed and it was all part of some mind changing drug/process that the aliens had created to make the time served seem longer.

The character was constantly starving his cellmate, then one day they became angry with each other and he killed his cellmate thinking he was withholding food from him, only to find after the murder the cellmate had been saving food for him?

  • 2
    If you liked that, you'll also enjoy this
    – Valorum
    Apr 16, 2015 at 19:42

2 Answers 2


I believe this was an episode of DS9. O'Brien was the prisoner, the episode was called "Hard Time":

Convicted of espionage, Miles O'Brien is given the memories of twenty years in prison in a matter of hours. Returning to DS9, O'Brien finds he cannot shrug the memory of his awful experience or rid himself of the guilt he feels over the death of his cellmate.

The premise was similar to a Voyager episode featuring Tom Paris called "The Chute".


Riker had a similar experience in the TNG episode "Future Imperfect".

After an away mission to Alpha Onias III interrupts Commander Riker's birthday party, the first officer suddenly awakens in sick-bay sixteen years in the future where he is the captain of the Enterprise and about to negotiate a peace treaty with the Romulan Star Empire.

  • 3
    Similar in the sense of trapped in a hologram. Apart from that there's very little similarity.
    – Valorum
    Apr 16, 2015 at 19:25
  • 2
    He is also led to believe that an extended amount of time had passed. Apr 16, 2015 at 19:27
  • 5
    @SpiderDisco: sure, but in the case of O’Brien, he isn’t led to believe that an extended amount of time has passed — he actually experiences that time, whereas Riker is told he has amnesia of the last 16 years. In that way O’Brien’s experience is more similar to Picard’s experience in The Inner Light. (Man. Star Trek really got the most out of its plot ideas huh.) Apr 16, 2015 at 21:02
  • The Inner Light - great episode! Apr 17, 2015 at 0:50
  • 1
    A better example for Riker, more in line with the episode in question (rightly identified as DS9 Hard Time) than Future Imperfect is "Frame of Mind" - TNG Season 6 memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Frame_of_Mind_(episode)
    – NKCampbell
    Dec 4, 2015 at 23:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.