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Zealousgirl’s EARLY EDITION

~ “Trip-centric” Enterprise SPOILERS ~

Production 045
First Air Date: April 8, 2003 in Canada (April 9, 2003 in US on UPN)
Mission Date: unknown

Director: James L. Conway
Story By: Taylor Elmore & David A. Goodman
Teleplay By: David A. Goodman

Disclaimer: I am in no way affiliated with Star Trek or Paramount. I do this for amusement and not for profit. Be forewarned that this will be seen through the biased eyes of a proud Tuckerite!!! (and, a Trip/T’poler!) I will try to focus on what is happening with Trip in these spoilers. I will only briefly talk about non-Trip scenes, so if you want more details check out Li’s Trekpulse review.

About ‘Judgement’: I enjoyed this episode, although it was very predictable. Only 2 mentions of Trip, and one very short scene with him, although some of the Trip/T’pol tension was there again (yeah!)

Synopsis (from StarTrek.com):

Captain Archer stands accused before a Klingon tribunal of conspiring against the Empire, and his only hope of escaping a death sentence or life in the dilithium mines of Rura Penthe is an aging and disenchanted Klingon lawyer with little energy or enthusiasm for the case.


A group of angry Klingons are standing in balconies around a darkened room, banging sticks and chanting. Archer is brought in and asked how he pleads – obviously saying ‘Not Guilty’. The Klingon overseeing the proceedings says that this will be decided starting the next day.


Phlox visits Archer in his cell, under the pretense that he has some sort of infectious disease. He explains that Trip and T’pol are trying to come up with a way to free him, along with Starfleet and Vulcan High Command. Phlox declares Archer healthy, and is forced to leave.

Archer is then introduced to his Advocate, Kolos – a bitter old Klingon who shows no interest in his story. He tells him that he is to stay quiet during the proceedings.

Now, back in the Tribunal room, Archer is standing in the middle with the noisy Klingons up in the balcony. The prosecutor is introduced and then the judge enters.

The first witness is the Captain of a Klingon ship. He claims that they were chasing after some rebels, and found them boarding Enterprise. He then goes on to make up a story about how Archer refused to give them back the rebels, saying that they are going to help them take down the Klingon Empire. Enterprise then attacks the Klingon ship, and takes off for the rings of a nearby planet. They followed but Enterprise set off some high powered weapon that knocked out there power and left them stranded for 3 days. The Captain has now been demoted to a Weapons Officer, and is disgraced.

The prosecutor then goes on to give a big oration about honor etc… Then demands that given the evidence that Archer be sentenced to death.

The Advocate has no defense, so Archer pipes up to say that all are lies, and he gets zapped for speaking up.


Back in his cell, Archer nibbles on some Targ, spitting it out because it’s not cooked. Kolos pays him a visit, to reprimand him for his speaking out in court. He wants Archer to give up the ‘rebels’ so that his life will be spared. Archer refuses.

Kolos does not understand why Archer give up their life for others. Archer insults Kolos about the farce that is the current court system. Kolos explains that he is too old to challenge the rules. Archer convinces him to stand up the others, and show them what a real trial is like.

Later, back in the Tribunal, Archer is again center-stage. Kolos asks for Archer to testify in his own defense. The prosecutor objects, but Kolos has the right (he gives a speech about justice etc…)

The judge allows for it.

Kolos questions Archer (with the prosecutor interrupting several times, trying to bait him).

Archer recalls the events. They had received a distress call. A ship with 27 biosigns, ‘in a bad way’ (as Malcolm says) with minimal life support. They bring on board an alien species (funny ridges on their faces). The aliens gave a story about how the Klingons annexed their colony several years ago, and had promised to care for them. Instead the Klingon Empire abandoned them, with all of their resources stripped. The alien refugees decided to leave to find a better place, but the Klingons were not happy. Enterprise was to help them get to a better place as their vessel was now useless (a 2nd mention about Trip here: “My chief engineer determined that their vessel was beyond repair”). They detect a Klingon vessel on an intercept course – Archer orders a tactical alert.


Then, a D-5 Battle Cruiser arrives, and the Captain of that vessel (the one that testified earlier) contacted Archer to demand that they hand over the ‘rebels’. Of course, Archer refuses. The Klingons fire on them. Enterprise rids behind a big rock in the ring of a planet, and just as the Klingons are about to find them, they fire a modified torpedo which sets off the plasma in the rings, and disabling the Klingon ship.

Kolos then goes on to rationalize that Archer was purely defending his own ship. He points out that Archer could have destroyed the Klingon ship if he had wanted to. He then goes on to present the facts that Archer has helped the Klingons in the past: the undercovering of the Suliban plot to take over the Empire, and to save a group of Klingons in a decaying orbit around a gas giant.

Kolos states that Archer is guilty, but of meddling and not of trying to incite a rebellion.

Now back in his cell, Archer and Kolos share blood wine as they wait for the verdict. They exchange niceties. Kolos explains that not all Klingons are of the warrior class. Archer is surprised that all Klingons are not soldiers. Kolos talks about how his mother was a biologist, and his father was a teacher. But now, the youth only want to pick up weapons because the way they are told that victory is gotten at all cost. He finds that its all senseless bloodshed. Archer tell him that life on Earth used to be like that, but now all is great.

Archer is back in the Tribunal. The judge agrees that Archer was not trying to incite rebellion, although he still should be held accountable for his own actions, therefore is guilty. The judge commutes the sentence of death, as he can not ignore the good things that Archer has done for the Empire. He will be sentenced to life in the dilithium mines of Rura Pente.


Kolos is upset by this, saying that this is not an act of mercy as the average survival in these mines is 6-12 months. He insults the Tribunal, with regards to its honor. The judge deems him in contempt of court, and sentencing him to join Archer on Rura Pente, for a full year.

~Back on Enterprise~

All the senior officers are on the bridge, including Trip (our one and only sighting for this episode). T’pol is explaining that Archer was found guilty and was sentenced to a penal colony, and that Vulcan High Command is still working on diplomatic ways to have him released.

Trip: “So what do we do?” (He is standing in the middle of the bridge, hands behind his back, a look of concern on his face)

T’pol explains that they are to leave immediately. Malcolm protests, saying that they haven’t left for the penal colony yet. T’pol replies that it is too risky.

Trip: “I’m willing to risk it.”

T’pol replies that the Captain explicitly stated that he did not want Enterprise to be endangered on his behalf. She crosses the bridge to stand almost nose to nose with Trip (maybe a bit of an exaggeration here, but they do stare at each other quite intently – my Trip/T’pol senses were tingling!!!)

Trip: “So you’re saying we just forget about him?”

T’pol: “I’m saying a rescue isn’t an option. But there are diplomatic channels.”

Trip: “We tried diplomatic channels.”

T’pol: “Not all of them. I’ve dealt with several Klingons bureaucrats in the past. Some of them can be. . . persuaded.”

Trip inhales slowly, giving her the ‘I think I know what you’re thinking’ look, and they break eye contact finally. (although not long enough for me)

T’pol asks Travis to take them out of orbit.

~Rura Pente~

Inside the mines of the ice planet, Kolos and Archer with big furry coats are pick-axing the walls, looking for dilithium. Kolos takes a break, and one of the guards zaps him. Archer comes to his rescue. There is a bit of a fight, but Archer ends up losing and getting zapped. Kolos tells him that he is stupid to be meddling in others affairs. They have a good (wheezy) laugh, and get back to work.

A new group of prisoners arrive, and the one in the back in wearing a hood. He has a familiarity to his gait ( and he is a bit short). He approaches Archer slowly, pick-axe in hand. Kolos stops him from coming closer, and then ‘low and behold’ he flips off his hood and it’s Malcolm.

Malcolm explains that T’pol knew someone who agreed to look the other way so that someone can come down and get Archer. They have bribed the guards to let them go. Archer wants Kolos to go, but he doesn’t want to since he would like to return some honor into Klingon society and that he could not do this while a fugitive.

So they leave.


Return to Miscellany

Two folks have made comments

Man, I wanna more Trip!! Oh well . .. I hear that in some May episode, T'Pol's tightly controlled "primal" side will come out. And it is May sweeps . .. .

i heard somewhere that trip and t'pol hook up in february episode after she gets jealous that he is flirting with some girls