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"The Icarus Factor"
Star Trek: The Next Generation episode
Worf during the ceremony in "The Icarus Factor".
Episode no. Episode 40
Written by Davis Assael (teleplay)
Robert L. McCullough (teleplay), David Assael (story)
Directed by Robert Iscove
Production no. 140
Original airdate February 20, 1989
Guest stars

Mitchell Ryan, Colm Meaney

Episode chronology
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"Time Squared" "Pen Pals"

"The Icarus Factor" is a second-season episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. It was first broadcast on April 24, 1989.



The primary plot of the episode deals with William Riker's decision about taking a command of his own, complicated by the briefing he must receive on the assignment from his estranged father, Kyle Riker (played by Mitchell Ryan). While initially very reluctant to listen to his father's attempt to reconcile, an anbo-jitsu match finally forces him to listen, and reconcile with his father.

The secondary plot point revolves around Worf who is acting more agitated than usual. It is eventually learned that Worf has missed an important Klingon ceremony marking the anniversary of his Age of Ascension. The crew recreates the ritual on the holodeck, permitting him to return to normal.


Anbo-Jitsu is a fictitious Japanese sport shown in Star Trek: The Next Generation. In it, two armored opponents facing each wear a solid visor, rendering them blind, and fight with a large staff. A proximity sensor is worn by each combatant, alerting them to their opponent's location with an audio signal. A protective cushion is worn on one arm and can be used to shield or deflect attacks. It is called "the ultimate evolution in the martial arts" in the context of the show though all the required paraphernalia seems counter-intuitive to the very nature of most martial arts (which train the body and mind), and most of the moves seem to involve clumsily swinging the staves like baseball bats.

In Japanese, "An" means dark, as the opponents are blind folded. "Bo" means staff. "Jitsu" means technique or skill.

Production Notes

External links



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