Observations in TNG: "The High Ground"

A joint project with TrekCore, by Jörg Hillebrand and Bernd Schneider

Here are some observations about sets, props and visual effects in TNG: "The High Ground" without a specific theme, and a comparison of the original TV release (TNG) with the remastered episode (TNG-R).

"The High Ground" HD Screencaps @ TrekCore

Description TNG Other caps Comparison TNG to TNG-R Description TNG-R
A Rutian banner is prominently displayed on the plaza.
Rutian banner
The plaza with the banner in HD. Note the red writing in the black field of the banner.

The lamp posts on the plaza were previously seen on Tau Cygna V in "The Ensigns of Command". They were originally created for "Star Trek V: The Final Frontier" where they appeared on Nimbus III. The lamps will be seen in several later episodes, namely on Moab IV in "The Masterpiece Society", on Romulus in "Unification I+II", on Barkon IV in "Thine Own Self" and on a planet visited by the crew of the USS Voyager in "Time and Again".
Re-Used Props - Furniture

Several glass domes on tripods are seen in the Rutian café. Domes like that could also be found in Riker's quarters in the second season.

"Star Trek V"

"Up the Long Ladder"
No changes

"The Ensigns of Command"

The Rutian plaza features two colorful sculptures comprised of various geometric shapes. Similar sculptures are often seen in the classrooms aboard the USS Enterprise-D in episodes such as in "Imaginary Friend", "Rascals" and "Hero Worship". A sculpture like this was also on display in the Starbase 515 lobby in "Samaritan Snare".

The water bottle next to Doctor Crusher is similar in design to the Romulan ale bottle in "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" and the Ennan VI Ale bottle in "Time Squared". Decades later, such a bottle would also appear in PIC: "Absolute Candor".

"Samaritan Snare"

"Star Trek II"
The water bottle in HD.

"Imaginary Friend"

"Time Squared"


PIC: "Absolute Candor"
The pistol used by the Rutian Police is one of the most often re-used weapons on Star Trek. The pistol reappeared, unchanged, in several TNG episodes, like "Legacy", "Man of the People", "Starship Mine", "Frame of Mind" and "Attached".
Re-Used Props - Beam Weapons

"Man of the People"

"Frame of Mind"
No changes

The Rutian police uniform, likewise, was often re-used in later episodes. It was born by a Vulcan in "Vortex", the Mari in "Random Thoughts" and the New Sydney Police Force in "Prodigal Daughter". The metallic band on the sleeves and the right side of the uniforms was removed for the later re-uses, however.
Re-Used Costumes

The custom-made holster for the Rutian pistol can be nicely seen in this screenshot as well. It was also re-used in "The Passenger" when the weapon re-appeared as a Kobliad pistol.

DS9: "Vortex"

VOY: "Random Thoughts"
A better look at the uniforms and the weapons in HD.

DS9: "Prodigal Daughter"

DS9: "The Passenger"
Rutia IV is a re-use of Drema IV, seen in "Pen Pals". Drema IV was geologically unstable, explaining the lava streams in the bottom left corner of the screenshot.
Re-Used Planets in TNG
In HD, Rutia IV is no longer the same as Drema IV but represented by a new model.

This Rutian PADD looks remarkably like a 20th century circuit board. The same prop was also in use on the Pakled ship Mondor in "Samaritan Snare" and on the USS Hathaway in "Peak Performance".

Security surveillance of Rutia IV can be seen on the monitor behind Riker.

"Samaritan Snare"

"Peak Performance"
An HD close-up of the PADD.
The colorful PADD-like device behind Riker is very similar in design to Vulcan PADDs seen at the beginning of "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home".
"Star Trek IV"
An HD close-up of the device.
Walls similar to the one seen in the background were previously seen in "Hide and Q" on Quadra Sigma III and in "Too Short a Season" on Mordan IV. Similar wall pieces could be spotted in several Star Trek films, including "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" and "Star Trek III: The Search for Spock".
Re-Used Building Interiors

"Star Trek II"

"Hide and Q"
No changes

"Star Trek III"

"Too Short a Season"
Surveillance footage visible behind Riker gives an idea about what the surface of Rutia IV looks like, as no matte painting was created for this episode. No changes
The large wall with white light panels behind Crusher was previously seen in the Rite of Ascension simulation in "The Icarus Factor" and on the Gatherer ship in "The Vengeance Factor".
"The Icarus Factor"

"The Vengeance Factor"
No changes

The Rutian police badge was worn by several other aliens in later DS9 and VOY episodes. It was worn by Jaheel in "Babel" and the Kressari Captain Zef'no in "The Circle". It could also be seen on the unnamed hostile aliens in the VOY episode "Latent Image" and the Imhotep in "Drive".

The metallic ribbon of the Rutian uniform is made from the same material as Q's 21st century post-atomic horror uniform in "Encounter at Farpoint" and the Ferengi head gear in "The Last Outpost" and "The Battle".

DS9: "Babel"

VOY: "Drive"
A good look at the uniform and the emblem in HD.

DS9: "The Circle"

"Encounter at Farpoint"

VOY: "Latent Image"

"The Last Outpost"
On the small table behind Riker, next to a sculpture of a hand, transparent PADDs can be seen. These PADDs last appeared in the season 1 episode "Symbiosis" where they were used by Dr. Beverly Crusher.

An HD close-up of the PADDs.
The wall ribbing behind Crusher previously appeared in the mess hall of the Klingon Bird of Prey Pagh in "A Matter of Honor" and in the recreation of the Hall of Ascension in "The Icarus Factor".
"A Matter of Honor"

"The Icarus Factor"
No changes
The two crew members are seen leaving the medical lab, last seen in "Evolution". The two small consoles have been part of the set since the first season.
"Home Soil"

No changes
The Ansata rifle prop was re-used numerous times in later episodes. It is most well-known as the Romulan disruptor rifle, first appearing in "Unification I+II".
Re-Used Props - Beam Weapons

"Unification II"
We can see more details of the weapon in HD.
A short corridor can be briefly seen behind this door close to the warp core. In "Encounter at Farpoint", this still was a turbolift door.
"Encounter at Farpoint"
No changes
The Ansata bomb appeared many years later, as another bomb in the Voyager episode "Time and Again".
VOY: "Time and Again"
A good look at the bomb in HD.
The prop Geordi uses to detach the Ansata bomb from the warp core later serves as a DNA scanner in "Legacy".
No changes
The Ansata bomb is beamed off the ship just in time before it detonates. The shot as it was recreated for TNG-R.
The effect of the folded space-transporter can be seen in these two screenshots. The effect in TNG-R.
The Ansata pistol Kyril Finn drops here is almost identical in design to the Varon-T disruptor seen later in this season in "The Most Toys".
"The Most Toys"
No changes
A graphic of the southern hemisphere of Rutia IV showing the location of the Ansata base. The display in TNG-R.
Kyril Finn's sketches of Beverly Crusher. No changes
The inverter can be seen hanging from the ceiling here. This is the first appearance of a prop that would continue to be re-used in various forms in many later episodes. It shows up in the warp nacelle in "Eye of the Beholder" and as USS Voyager's main computer processor in "Concerning Flight".
"Eye of the Beholder"

"Concerning Flight"
We can see a few more details of the device in HD, such as the yellow/red markings.
This Ansata pistol was also re-used in several later episodes. It was used by colonists on Turkana IV in "Legacy", the Ennis and Nol-Ennis in "Battle Lines" and by the colonists on Dorvan V in "Journey's End".
Re-Used Props - Beam Weapons


"Journey's End"
No changes
Kyril Finn's pistol is different from the three other types of pistols seen earlier in the episode. Similar weapons were used by the Mariposans in "Up the Long Ladder" and Dr. Paul Stubbs in "Evolution". The Ferengi Sovak will also use a pistol of this type to threaten Picard in "Captain's Holiday".
"Up the Long Ladder"

"Captain's Holiday"
No changes
The footage of the USS Enterprise-D leaving orbit of Rutia IV was filmed using the 2-foot model of the ship. A final look at the new planet.
A final look at Rutia IV, again a re-use of Drema IV from "Pen Pals".


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