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Season 4 Deconstructed

Season 4 Deconstructed

by Peter Simons

Welcome to my "review" of the 4th Enterprise season. Part of the reason why I write this text is that after last year's "review" I was challenged to review a season under the assumption that it was good and go from there, instead of doing it the other way round. Hehe, I bet you, Clicks, you didn't think I could do that. Well, here you are.

To summarize my impression of this season: It was AWESOME. In order to prove that, I'll go through the individual episodes, comment on them, and then assign each of them the maximum of three points. Once that's done, I'll calculate an average score for the entire season. I realize that there are some extremely unreasonable people — a.k.a. bashers — who will not agree with my opinion. Although this troubles me deeply it really can't be helped in any way, because the truth is: the season was AWESOME. I swear, Many Coto is the savior of Trek! If you don't believe me, just look at the ratings.

Here we go.

Storm Front      (3 points)

Last year, I said about The Xindi that whoever decided to open the season with that episode deserves to be fired. I have to admit, I was worried just a tiny little bit that the season opener this year wouldn't be much better. Thank god I was so wrong!

Storm Front really rocked. I mean, the Nazis have won the World War thanks to alien interference — has anyone ever had a wild idea like that before? What I particularly loved about this episode was how it didn't concern itself with any insights into a society ruled by Nazis, but instead put the emphasis on blowing up the space/time conduit the aliens were building. I thought that was a very satisfying way to wrap up that Temporal Cold War story arc we didn't learn anything about in the previous three years. You can say whatever you want about Rick Bermann and Brannon Braga, but they sure put a lot of effort into the TCW idea.

So our valiant crew is stranded in a badly messed up past, and their only way of putting things right is by blowing up some device some aliens are building somewhere. I am on the edge of my seat already. How can they possibly achieve that, given the fact that all they have to work with is a Warp 5 starship with weapons systems far more advanced than anything anyone on Earth has at the time? I can see right away why the 31st century has to rely on the Enterprise crew to perform that job. In fact, it is even more difficult than it sounds, because before they can blow that thing up they have to use their scanners to find it! I swear, if those mobsters down on the planet hadn't helped them by creating a diversion with their .45 millimeter pistols, we all could have kissed the world as we know it goodbye.

But the episode doesn't just throw raw and unbearable tension at you, it also has a great romance between Captain Archer and a local resistance fighter. Awesome. I particularly liked how they underplayed the whole romance by having nothing ever happen. At one point, I had an idea for an interesting angle on the romance. Consider this: Archer meets this local resistance fighter; he sees her, and falls for her hard. He is a lone wolf, naturally, who never bothers with women except for drooling over his Science Officer's breasts when his dog is sick. But this girl, she is just right.

Now, just as he is about to tell his crew to get lost and decides to stay on Nazi!Earth with her, he learns that according to history she will die soon, and her death happens to be pivotal to overthrowing the Nazi regime. Just imagine the drama! Archer would have to stand there and watch the woman he loves being overrun by a car or something, but there would be nothing he could do to stop it. I thought that would be powerful story-telling.

On the other hand, thank god we never get something like that on the show — I would probably cry and be unsettled for days!

Anyway, did I mention Silik shows up too? Yes, it wouldn't be much of a Temporal Cold War wrap up without Silik, would it? What exactly he does and what exactly that has to do with anything is hard to remember right now, but I remember that in the end Archer has to watch Silik die and there is nothing he can do about it. That was so sad! I was unsettled for days after seeing that happen.

And as is if all that wouldn't be more than the average viewer can digest in a two-part episode anyway, this story also wraps up the entire Xindi arc! How exactly it does that is somewhat difficult to describe, but in the end Enterprise heads for the real Earth and is greeted by a fleet of Starfleet ships to escort them. I thought that was a very satisfying resolution to this little interstellar war problem we had last year.

3 points for this one.

Home      (3 points)

While being in the Expanse, our crew was forced to make some questionable decisions. Nothing that questionable, mind you, it was basically just the everyday questionable stuff you to do when having to blow up a Xindi weapon. You know … torture, piracy, attempted mass murder … that kind of thing.

Of course, people in the future have a somewhat more evolved sense of ethics than we grunts do today. For example, assume it would come out that arbitrary Iraqi citizens had been tortured by the brave defenders of freedom in order to further the war effort and to get some pictures, then nobody would care much about that today. There would be a minor investigation to which hardly anybody would pay attention, the offenders would be sent to bed without dinner, and that would be it.

In the future, however, things don't work that way. There is a massive investigation of this entire Xindi thing, and everyone involved in those decisions is interrogated until every little detail has been cleared up! That is, everybody but Reed, Tucker, T'Pol, Maywheather, Sato or anyone else of the crew except for Archer. Since Archer is pretty stressed out after all his war crimes though, the investigation has to be postponed so that he can go on vacation first.

Which is fine with me, because Star Trek never bothered much with ethics. Star Trek is about personal drama, and what is more dramatic than the question of how our beloved war hero deals with his crimes? How can a man ever recover from these experiences?

Duh! By having sex of course.

Unfortunately, poor Trip wasn't so lucky. Granted, it looked good for a while. T'Pol invites him to accompany her back home to Vulcan. He can stay in her mother's house, too. If that doesn't yell SEX at you, what does?

But he had no idea.

What I particularly liked about this episode was how meaningful Trip and T'Pol's sacrifice was. T'Pol's mother, you see, was recently kicked out of the Vulcan Science Academy because of her daughters shameful involvement in the incident of P'Jem years ago. I am sure, the fact that T'Les is a member of an underground sect working to overthrow the government didn't have ANYTHING to do with that. Anyway, T'Les — like any mother would — puts her daughter's happiness before her own and thus allows her to marry any other guy in order for her to get her job back. Not that T'Les is gonna keep that job long because, you know, she is part of an underground sect working to overthrow the government, but that little detail would make T'Pol's selfless act utterly pointless, so telling T'Pol about it would in turn make matters only more difficult for her.

Where was I? Right, Trip! What can I say? Sucks to be you, Trip.

There is still more. Naturally, Phlox, Reed, and Maywheather need sex too, so they go into the next bar on Earth, only to witness an unsettling act of xenophobia. Thank goodness they instantly get into a bar fight to set that idiot straight, and the issue is resolved nicely. On top of it all, we witness Phlox do the puffer fish thing with his face, something he has never done before and will never do again, but still it was awesome for what it was. You didn't see these things on the Original Series, did you? Yes, this is not your father's Trek anymore. Today, racism on Earth can be dealt with by impressive CGI effects. I loved it.

3 points for this one.

Borderland      (3 points)

This episode deals with one of the more serious problems our heros have to face in the 22nd century: the lack of maps. A dozen leftover super-humans from the Eugenic War roam freely in the universe, and since there is no way a few billion societies can possibly survive that, Enterprise has to enter the Borderland between Klingon and Orion space in order to kill them all. Um, bring them home, I meant. The only problem with the Borderland is that nobody knows much about it.

Now, Captain Kirk would have said: "Sounds like fun, let's go in." What an idiot. Captain Picard, on the other hand, would have said: "It is important that we kill them all … um, bring them home, so let's go in." Amateur. You can see why nobody would ever remember those guys and why Archer is a well-recognized hero of humanity, because he says: "Let's get the criminal master mind who created those super-humans in the first place out of prison so that he can show us the way."

I nodded enthusiastically when I heard of that plan.

To my dismay, it went all wrong!

The valiant Enterprise crew is attacked by Orion pirates who capture several crewmen to be sold into slavery, and then they disappear without the slightest trace. Since they took one of the main characters too, Enterprise heads to the same slave station they went to, Archer singlehandedly frees all his crewmen, and then they all go back en-route to wherever they were headed — only to run into the evil super-humans!

It is a disaster. Soong is gone, the dozen super-humans are gone, the Orions are pissed, and we are treated to the sight of "To Be Continued".

3 points for this one.

Cold Station 12      (3 points)

The dozen super-humans and Soong enjoy their reunion. There are lots of tears, hugs, and love. It is almost sad that each and everyone of them has to die … um, be brought home. They decide that attacking a military research facility next would be the best course of action. For a moment, I was worried that Star Trek airs an episode like this in times like these. I mean, there are real madmen running around on the planet, and it feels a bit reckless to air detailed instructions on how to take over a military research facility on national television! Don't they realize this knowledge could be abused?

Anyway, now that it is out in the open, here is how it works: You fly up to the military research facility, enter it, then you round up the guards and scientists in the main laboratory, and that's it. Of course, there still is the problem of how to access the main computer, which happens to be secured by a hexadecimal security code with more than a hundred thousands different combinations. In case you haven't flunked a major degree in mathematics like I have, that is a one with five zeros. I'll spell it out: 100,000. That is how many different combinations there are to the main computer of that military research facility.

I know what you're thinking now. A hundred thousand different combinations? That's laughable! Any wrist watch can try all of them in under a minute in the 21th century already, what kind of idiot would use such a code hundred years into the future? I admit, I thought the same, but we all missed one little detail: The code is hexadecimal.

So the super-humans have to torture Phlox's best friend for the code. At first I was shocked. Torture on the show and Archer is neither doing nor receiving it? What the hell is going on? Needless to say Archer was pissed too, so he and his assault team use the transporter to beam into the military research facility. Of course, beaming them out later is utterly impossible, but we already knew that phenomenon back from Countdown.

Once the valiant crew of the Enterprise has entered the complex, they are immediately taken prisoner for more torture. At last we are back on familiar ground! The drama unfolds at a mind-blowing pace now. Soong and the super-humans get the code, take hundreds of eggs with more super-humans in them back to their ship, and also add a few containers of madly dangerous diseases into the mix so that they can use them for some genocide later. Then there is a highly dramatic scene in which Malik — the super-human's leader — confronts Archer in the laboratory because he hates his guts for no apparent reason.

"I wanted to kill you all along!" he yells at Archer. "Kill you, maim you, destroy your body, eradicate your soul, wipe your sorry little ass off the face of the universe!" He is mad! So he beats Archer up badly without wounding him in any way, and then leaves.

If you thought the situation at the end of last episode was dire, you had no idea. T'Pol — who remained in command of the Enterprise — has been given strict orders to destroy the military research facility in case anything went wrong. Since things clearly went wrong, she now proceeds to destroy the military research facility. The crew is sick because they have to carry out her orders to kill their Captain, their friends, and the hostages. Trip goes as far as to shoot her a worried look on the bridge!

I gnaw on my fingernails. I am convinced there is no way out of this mess: Archer is as good as dead.

Enterprise attacks the stationary facility in a wild maneuver and fires at them with everything they've got. The one torpedo hits dead center, but nothing happens. The Enterprise crew realizes destroying the station is not gonna work, so they aim to destroy the super-human's ship instead which is trying to escape. And they would have destroyed them, if the bastards hadn't gone to warp speed. Since there is no way to follow them, Enterprise heads back to the station where things become even more dramatic: Archer has to climb up a ladder and press a couple of buttons, or they'll all die.

Aaargh, "To Be Continued". Why do they do this me?

3 points for this one.

The Augments      (3 points)

The super-humans and Soong discuss how to proceed. Soong thinks that finding a planet to live on might be nice, but the super-humans feel that after having ambushed a military research facility just now, doing that would be kind of wuss'ish. So they opt for plan B, which happens to be genocide.

The plan is this: They kill every single soul on some Klingon colony, and then they can go find a planet to live on. I see right away that superior intelligence is one of the traits of these people, and that makes me wonder how Archer is ever gonna stop them. Oh, right — I almost forget about Archer. Back on the military research facility, he climbs up a ladder, pushes a couple of buttons, and all is well. Once Archer and the others have returned to the Enterprise, following the super-human's ship suddenly becomes an option. So they do just that.

Meanwhile, the thoughts and motivations of the super-humans are explored in great detail by showing Malik and his girlfriend wrestle in bed all sweaty in torn clothes. I have to admit, I don't enjoy the character-driven parts of a story that much; I am more of a sucker for explosions and space battles. So I talked to my cats for the better part of those scenes. There was just too much dialogue for my taste. The story recaptured my interest quickly though, when the wrestling turns into first degree murder and Malik stabs his girlfriend.

What else? Soong is pissed that he has been overruled by majority decision earlier, and at last displays what a questionable character he really is by betraying his own children and selling them out to Archer. Archer then proceeds to carry out a brave attempt to bring each and everyone of the super-humans back home to Earth, but sadly fails and has to watch helplessly how they all die.

Then there is a hilarious scene where Soong looks into the camera and decides that super-humans suck, he'll build mad robots now! Hehe, as if that is ever gonna work.

3 points for this one.

The Forge      (3 points)

Some people have been wondering why it is that the kick-ass Vulcans we knew back from the earlier series have mysteriously turned into dumb, dumb jerks on the show, and at last the time has come to find out! Before we do, the utter dumbness of the 22nd century Vulcans has to be really driven home though. So what they do is this: Rather than bombing the shit out of the underground sect that's bothering them, they decide to bomb the Earth embassy instead because then they can bomb the underground sect next.

Granted, that's perfectly reasonable so far. The dumbness is established the moment the Vulcans get caught. Honestly, if your brightest minds can't fool Archer, you don't deserve to rule.

Shit really hits the fan now. Archer and T'Pol decide to investigate the embassy bombing and beam into the desert. Soval does an amazing 180 degree turnaround from being ignorant and illogical to being heroic and illogical. The Vulcan High Commander does an amazing 180 degree turnaround from being Vulcan to being Romulan. I swear, after a while it is hard to figure out who is who!

I completely lost track of what is going on when Archer does an 180 degree turnaround too. Only moments ago, he used to be the Vulcan-hating bigot we know and love, and then he suddenly is Surak himself!

My head was spinning so badly because of all the shocking revelations, I was actually relieved to see the "To Be Continued" on the screen. Awesome.

3 points for this one.

Awakening      (3 points)

As if the story hadn't been wild enough already, things become really complicated now. At last we learn that something is rotten in the deserts of Vulcan. The problem is that the Vulcans have misinterpreted the teachings of Surak. Which makes perfect sense because logical deduction really is quite difficult and open to lots of interpretation. I sure remember that from school. They give you an equation, you look at it for an eternity without the slightest clue, at last you manage to crack it by looking at your neighbor's solution, and then there is endless discussion whether that solution is correct or not.

Once I see the Vulcan's problem, I begin to wonder how they'll ever be able to set that right. I mean, the very nature of logical deduction is that it cannot be verified in any way! Logic has to be taken on faith, and on faith alone. The Vulcans sure are in deep shit.

Which is why they need Archer! It turns out, Surak in his eternal wisdom has chosen Archer so that he can be the savior of Vulcan. Don't you just love the Captain?

Archer proceeds to kick ass by singlehandedly making Dr. McCoy look like a fool. You remember when McCoy had Spock's Katra in his head, tried to nerve pinch some red shirt, and it didn't work? Hehe, what an amateur. Archer on the other hand can't just nerve pinch people as he pleases, he is also immune to the heat, to the high gravity, to Vulcan martial arts, and to lack of hydrogen. Arguably Spock's Katra might be to blame rather than McCoy. Katras, you see, come with different super powers. That works a little bit like those bonus weapons you can pick up in computer games. You shoot some underground sect Vulcan, and when he dies, you can pick up the Katra and gain special powers and additional lives. So apparently Spock's Katra is something you'll find … let's say on the 3rd level, but Surak's Katra is something you'll find on the 10th level, shortly before you'll have to face the end monster. I swear, if Surak's Katra fought against Spock's Katra, Surak's Katra would wipe the floor with it..

For a while, I was worried that Archer might have the same problem adapting McCoy had. You know … delusions, coma, and imminent death. Thank god Archer didn't change at all. He just kept being arrogant and condescending the way he always is. Although in a slightly different way. Normally, he lectures T'Pol on how Human culture is superior to hers, but this time he lectured T'Pol on how he understood Vulcan culture better than she did. Very refreshing.

Did I mention the interstellar war already?

Yes, there is no story worth telling without the threat of interstellar war involved, and there sure as hell is one in this story. A mighty fleet of ten Vulcan ships or so is on its way to Andoria to end their border disputes for good. Since no-one bothered to inform the Andorians about the approaching fleet, all their sensor grids, spy arrays, and planetary defense mechanism are worth jack squat. That's why Trip disobeys his orders to return to Earth, and heads for some nebular to warn Shran. "To be continued".

3 points for this one.

Kir'Shara      (3 points)

Take a deep breath. You have been wondering how Archer can save the entire Vulcan society after 10,000 years of being dumb? So have I. And here is the answer: You need to find a little stone pyramid, carry that to the Vulcan High-Command, push a button, and then Vulcan is saved.

The little pyramid, it turns out, contains Surak's original writings. Some nay-sayers may argue that with Surak's Katra alive and kicking in someone's head, the pyramid wouldn't necessarily be that important, but you are forgetting something: Surak is in Archer's head now. So you really need the pyramid.

The pyramid works essentially like LSD does. It can make you see mind-blowing light effects and patterns in the room, only the Vulcan-style LSD will make you cool instead of an addict. Anyway, the problem with Surak's teachings thus far was that everyone read them backwards. In most languages that wouldn't matter much, but Vulcan has the peculiar property that when you read it backwards it means the opposite too. For instance, someone writes down the sentence "be calm, logical, and laid-back about everything". While handing you the writing however, you accidently turn the paper around, and now it reads: "Erect a fascist dictatorship and suppress all forms of reason."

So this is what went wrong for the last couple of millennia. Which explains why the pyramid will save all of Vulcan, because there is NO WAY you can accidently put that thing upside-down anywhere.

Back to this little interstellar war we had going on. At this point, the story takes an unexpected turn: We get an elaborate torture scene. Man, I'm so glad we don't have to go without one for over three consecutive episodes! Torturing people left and right has always been an important part of Star Trek; it's good to see Enterprise is returning to its roots by using that more frequently. Seeing Soval writhe in that chair in agony was great fun. Much better than having Shran simply trust him and Trip. After all, there really is no way to verify that a fleet of war ships is en route to your home world other than inflicting pain and suffering to the guy who warned you. I loved it.

After Soval has been thoroughly tortured, all is good. Soval doesn't mind in the least, neither does Trip, nor does anyone else, and so Enterprise and the Andorian ships fly towards the rising sun together to destroy the evil Vulcans.

On Vulcan, things aren't working equally well, because taking the pyramid to the High Command turns out to be pretty difficult. Fortunately, there is an off-screen solution, and we can jump directly to the part where everything is resolved in a way that has never before been seen on any TV screen anywhere.

It all ends with a shocking revelation, namely the fact that the Vulcans are still dumb enough to let their ex-dictator walk around on the planet freely.

3 points for this one.

Daedalus      (3 points)

After having examined the Vulcan's insane ethics in great detail, it's time to be remembered that Humans are scum too. Some guy has recklessly destroyed his son's life, and now he is so guilt-ridden because of it that he destroys his daughter's life in order to make up for it. When that doesn't work too well, he decides that more lives need to be destroyed. Which brings him to the Enterprise, where he pisses everyone off, tells nothing but lies, and is responsible for the death of another crewmen. In the end, however, we find ourselves caring deeply for him and feel lots of sympathy for the poor man.

So does Archer. He scores another home-run by deciding that trying to save the guy's son is well worth the risk of losing the lives of a few other peoples' children. The fact that the to-be-saved son is Archer's best friend from childhood plays absolutely no part in that decision. When his senior officers misread his intentions, he yells at them and threatens Trip to throw him into the brig. Great stuff.

3 points for this one.

Observer Effect      (3 points)

Damn it! I actually liked this episode. What am I supposed to do now?

3 points for this one.

Babel One      (3 points)

In what could have been a follow-up to the Romulan conspiracy we learned nothing about in the Vulcan arc but isn't, we find out that the Romulans have built a remote-controlled ship which is so advanced that it can easily destroy pretty much any other ship. While being maneuvered through a remote control, no less. The Romulan's sneakiness we all know and love from other series is established by having them NOT build several hundred of those, man them with actual pilots, and just engage in war; but instead they built two ships and send them into action by remote control. Sneaky bastards.

I have to admit that if I were the Romulans, I wouldn't bother with conquest after discovering that kind of thing. I would patent the technology and become filthy rich by licensing it to other species! Just think about it: A remote-control device that can not only steer a starship over a distance of dozens of light-years with sufficient accuracy for battle, it can also cross this huge distance in fractions of a second somehow, so that the controls are fast enough to be worth anything in battle!

Granted, it only works for telepaths, but those are easy to find, and even easier to convince to do your bidding. You just tell them: You may be an utterly principled pacifist, but now that everyone you cared about is dead, why don't you help us killing people? As a bonus, you'll have your brain destroyed and will be treated like shit. Who could refuse that offer?

But apparently buying other planets isn't sneaky enough for the Romulans, so they better use the technology to piss off every other species in the quadrant before it is ready, or before they have found a second telepath.

What else can the ship do you wonder? Well, for one it can self-repair. Yes, that's right. You hit it with your Sunday punch, and it just flies away and repairs itself. Plus, there is the cloak. Not the stupid invisibility cloak everybody has these days — no, a cloak that will make it look like any other ship as you see fit. It is so real that even the most sophisticated sensor technology can absolutely not tell the difference even if the ship is sitting right in front of you. Naturally, all weapons can fire at will while cloaked. It's a shame that little stunt has been forgotten a few hundred years later, but so has the ability to fire phasers at warp speed, so I guess these things just happen every now and then.

Maybe I exaggerated a bit about the cloak earlier. In fact, no sophisticated sensor technology can tell the difference except Enterprise's. Enterprise's sensors can detect the incorrect power signature just fine, but that is because their sensors are operated by a telepath too, so that doesn't count.

All in all, I'd say it's a real cool sci-fi concept.

3 points for this one.

United      (3 points)

I hate it when they overdo it with the tension. You know, not everybody has a heart like an ox. Don't the Star Trek writers realize how dangerous it is to put us through the wringer like that? Archer engages Shran in a battle until death! Holy shit. Has that ever been done on Trek before?

I was so relieved when I found out nobody actually dies. What a great twist. A battle until death in which nobody dies. Awesome.

And it shows once more what a great guy Archer is. Compare that to the battle until death between Spock and Kirk in which neither of them died. Kirk had his ass handed to him by Spock in that one. What a wuss! Not so Archer. The Andorians train with these weapons all their lives, yet Archer — who has never seen one of those before — can defeat Shran without any problem. I think he is awesome.

I generally enjoyed the idea that an interspecies alliance would be formed by trying to kill each other first. That's the way to do it. And it so much more interesting to watch two great heros out-macho each other instead of bothering with details about all those species and cultures this supposed alliance consists of. After all, if you know how species kill each other you know all there is to know.

Once the fight until death is over and all disputes are settled at last, there comes the payoff: a space battle. Yes!

I love it when they give you lots of insights into the way different forms of life learn to understand each other, to respect each other, and to exist in peace with each other. And what more plausible way could there be than by cooperating to kill someone else? I think that's beautifully human, and very Star Trek'ish on top of it. Isn't that the way it works in real life? After all, a true friend is someone who holds the common enemy down so that you can kick him in the face.

3 points for this one.

The Aenar      (3 points)

After a near death experience, Trip decides to be bold and makes another attempt to have sex with T'Pol, only to find out that she brushes him off. Duh! Who could have seen that coming?

Trip, buddy, I envy you for your smile, but it becomes less and less believable that you can spell the term "warp engine", let alone build one. Where have you been for the last 3 seasons? Come on … just sit down, have a beer, and we'll talk. You see, there is a curious asymmetry in your relationship with T'Pol. Which is that you are her lap dog, but she couldn't care less about what you want.

Yes, it's hard to come to terms with that after so much love and affection has been exchanged already, but just look at the facts. The most intimate thought she has ever shared with you is her age. She denies feeling anything for you, she makes it clear that she doesn't want to feel anything for you, and she doesn't care much about what you feel either.

You are right, I know, the skin-tight, bright-red cat suits are awesome. It is difficult not to love her, but keep in mind that other people's daughters know good surgeons too! You should consider the possibility that T'Pol might not be such a terribly good match for you after all. She quite simply ignores you most of the time. Unless, when you lose interest in her and turn to some real nice woman who likes you and doesn't hide it. Then she suddenly cares what you do. The only time she slept with you was when she was completely stoned, she did it mostly to get rid of the competition, and the next morning she brushed you off and called it an "experiment". After that, she invited you back home with her so that you can watch her marry another guy for the sake of her mother's job. Once that's resolved, she told you she has no time to see you because she's busy reevaluating her core beliefs. No, she can't possibly involve you in that somehow.


Thank god he did.

What else? The sneaky Romulans decide that even though their entire scheme went utterly wrong, everything can still be set right by blowing up the Enterprise. A good plan, and it would have worked, if it hadn't been for the heart-wrenching scene in the end where some blind chick tells her brother he is not alone, and thus causes him to commit suicide, which leaves the Romulans without a way to fly their super-ships.

3 points for this one.

Affliction      (3 points)

Man, I love those Klingons. What really rocks about them is how they are real stupid all the time yet manage to build spaceships and sophisticated technology. In this case, they engineer a virus that will (a) make Klingons even more stupid than before, and will (b) kill them all. The Klingons love the (a) part, but (b) came somewhat unexpected, so they have to figure out a way how to reverse that effect. The only problem is that (a) is in full swing by now, so the Klingons have already become too stupid to stand any chance of dealing with (b) on their own. Which is why they abduct Phlox — with the help of Starfleet intelligence, of course — so that he can stop (b), preferably without reversing the effects of (a) too.

Meanwhile, the new super-stupid Klingons are sent on a mission to destroy Enterprise because doing so is pivotal for all kinds of reasons which are too difficult to explain right now. Their plan is to board the Enterprise and to NOT kill anyone, but to sabotage the ship instead. In a great display of phycological warfare, the super-stupid Klingons don't sabotage the ship so that it blows up though, they sabotage it in a way that forces Enterprise to fly real fast for the next couple of hours. The plan works spectacularly, maybe with the possible exception that one super-stupid Klingon manages to get caught in the process.

Back home, the Klingon chancellor proves what a true leader he is. He decides that if the Klingons can't stop the virus from killing them all, then he will kill them all with bombs. When Phlox learns of this, he is dismayed. Clearly the chancellor is infected too! Phlox contemplates explaining the fact that, yes, the virus may be air-borne, but still there really isn't enough air in space for it to travel from one world to another, but his experiences with the local authorities convince him that this is way beyond their grasp by now.

On the Enterprise, Archer is deeply concerned how all those speeding tickets will look in his personal file. He realizes that letting Trip go was the dumbest thing he has ever done because engineering feasts are always the result of an individual's effort; there hasn't been a single occasion in Earth's history where anything was ever accomplished because a team of engineers was good. Consequently, the entire engine room it completely at a loss what do to about the engines.

The man who can do in two minutes what the Enterprise crew can't accomplish in several hours couldn't care less though, because he is busy being happy about his transfer. The Colombia's bridge is packed with chicks! One female superior officer after another just waiting for him to say something so that they can mess up his life. He is in heaven! "To Be Continued."

3 points for this one.

Divergence      (3 points)

Archer understands how serious the situation is when the space troopers inform him that he can kiss his license goodbye if he doesn't slow down soon. A decision must be made, and it is to rendezvous with the Colombia so that Trip can handle the problem for him. Fortunately, at the mad speed they travel meeting with Colombia is just a matter of minutes. Unfortunately though, convincing Trip to help turns out to be more difficult, because the moment they arrive he was just contemplating getting back at Archer for all the crap he had to swallow in the last few years by sleeping with Archer's ex-girlfriend.

Reluctantly, Trip offers to log into Enterprise's computer system and to take a look at things first chance he gets, but that doesn't work because his system account has already been revoked. Next he offers to walk Chief Engineer Kelby through the procedure over the radio, but that doesn't work either because the man he has trained and worked with for the last few years spontaneously turned into a nut once left on his own devices.

So the only other option is for the two ships to fly real close to each other, to connect them by a cable, and to have Trip come over to the Enterprise by climbing up that cable in open space at Warp 5. He hesitates for a while, but agrees when he realizes that this stunt will impress the shit out of T'Pol.

The scene where he climbs up the cable is mind-blowingly tense. I swear, it takes ages for him to reach the other ship. That is because getting from A to B in zero gravity really is a lot of effort. It's not like you just grab the cable, push off, and wait calmly until you crash into the next solid thing on the other end. On the contrary, you have to pull yourself up bit by bit and exert lots of force to carry your weightless body.

Once Trip has reached the Enterprise, the tension increases even further because the two ships have trouble flying in a straight line! They rock upwards and downwards, putting lots of strain on the cable that still connects them. Everybody looks real worried because even though Trip is safe in Enterprise's Cargo Bay, only god knows what happens when that cable tears! A moment later it does, but fortunately nothing happens.

Trip has arrived to find the ship is a mess! Reed is escorted back to the brig, T'Pol is all demure and friendly to him, and his engineering team stands around uselessly and waits for him to do something. Trip looks at the problem they have been investigating for the last few hours and instantly proposes a fix: He'll switch the engines off, then switch them back on, and then the problem is solved! I swear, you could hear a dozen palms hit a dozen foreheads the moment he said that. He is such a hero!

Once that's taken care of, Trip hints at getting back to the Colombia. We all hold our breath and wonder whether he'll really leave the Enterprise? So does T'Pol. She tags along on his way to the transporter room, and tries to strong-arm him into admitting that he doesn't like it over there. For the last few days, she has been sending him mad sex dreams about her continuously with her PSI powers, so she inquires whether he has had trouble sleeping, but her plan doesn't work because Trip realizes the time has come to treat her like shit for a change, so he tells her that, indeed, he has had trouble sleeping because he has been banging half the female crew in his off-hours.

Meanwhile, the Klingons have reached the point where they've become so stupid that it proves increasingly difficult to stand upright and continue breathing all the while, so they decide that torturing Phlox good might help speed things up. Unfortunately — and this is my only complaint about this fine episode — the torture scene wasn't shown! What is going on?

Now that Trip has to everyone's utter surprise decided to stay on the Enterprise for a while, Enterprise and Colombia head to the Klingon virus laboratory together in order to wrap that little problem up too. They do so by having Archer beam into the complex alone, because if there is anyone who knows how to survive stupidity … he is it.

There are some space battles and lots of drama, until at last Phlox has to come up with a plan to blackmail the Klingons into letting him cure them. The problem is that although the cure will fix the killing-them-all part, it will also make them less stupid, so they want no part in that. In the end it all works out nicely though, thanks to another unsuccessful suicide attempt of our heroic Captain.

3 points for this one.

Bound      (3 points)

An Orion trader hands Archer the coordinates of some planet packed with valuable ores plus three half-naked sex slaves. Archer loves the slaves but has doubts about the ore, so he heads for the remote location to verify that the planet actually exists. T'Pol is pissed. The sex slaves clearly rock, and now every crewman is drooling over them instead of her! She pesters Archer to get rid of them, but he won't listen.

As it turns out, the Orion trader's intention wasn't to do Archer lots of favors after all, because these women are equipped with some bad-ass pheromones that make grown men act like idiots. Most of all, Ex-Chief-Engineer Kelby acts like an idiot, but on the other hand he is the only one to actually land one of them, so arguably he is way cooler than the rest of the male crew is. Of course, the drawback of having landed one of the sex slaves is that you invariably try to blow up the ship you're on afterwards.

This raises some suspicion.

After having stood in a cold shower for several hours, the senior officers meet to discuss how to handle the situation. They decide that locking the females up in the brig would be a good idea. I hold my breath and wait for Archer to show up in a black leather costume to dish out some torture I'd actually enjoy watching, but instead he leaves them alone with a few male guards to make sure nothing can possibly go wrong down there.

Meanwhile, T'Pol is relieved that Trip is back on the ship, because she really needs someone to take her frustration out on. So when Trip wonders why none of the sex slaves manages to get the slightest rise out him, she reveals that she owns his thoughts and controls his mind now, and if there ever was any chance of getting that thing up again, then it is with her and with her alone. The minute she sees his face, she feels better.

The Orion trader shows up and overpowers the Enterprise without any effort at all, something he couldn't have done without sending the sex slaves on board earlier. To make matters worse, the sex slaves have somehow managed to escape from the brig and run wild on the bridge, encouraging everybody to shoot T'Pol who is busy sending some mad technobabble pulse at the Orion's ship which would disable it entirely. Just when the tension is about to become unbearable, Trip walks onto the bridge, and shoots everybody but T'Pol and the sex slaves. T'Pol shoots the Orion trader. The sex slaves muster every bit of sexiness they have in them to get a rise out of Trip, but all they achieve is that back at her station T'Pol grins happily to herself.

3 points for this one.

In a Mirror, darkly      (3 points)

All sarcasm and irony aside, in all honesty, I thought this two-part episode was awesome. I often disagree with the decisions our beloved heros make, and I don't enjoy seeing all this violence and torture on the show so often. What made the difference this time, however, is that the writers for once chose not to hide the unethical behavior behind a wall of bigotry.

Archer does hate Vulcans, and he does treat T'Pol as if she were stupid, but out of the sudden he stopped pretending he didn't! He tells her to her face that he would shove her out of airlock if he wouldn't need her skills. Arguably, this was the nicest thing he has ever said to her! Or do you remember Archer ever telling T'Pol he needed her for anything? Only a year ago, in The Expanse, T'Pol kept repeating over and over again how Archer needed her to stay on board, but he simply didn't acknowledge it. Instead, he assured her they'll be fine, everything is good, yadda-yadda-yadda. I still don't like his attitude, but the character earned a lot of respect from me for being honest at last.

The same can be said about pretty much anyone on the ship. Reed, for example, simply admits to the sadistic pleasure he feels when destroying an enemy ship; Phlox dropped the pretense of "studying" when inflicting pain and suffering on his subjects, and Hoshi no longer pretends that she got her position through skill instead of sleeping her way up the ranks. It was so good to see true faces for a change, and I sure hope the writers keep pursuing this route in the next few episodes.

I particularly like that T'Pol dropped her charade too. As an avid Trip/T'Pol shipper, seeing her behave the way she did in the past often was troubling for me. Granted, she doesn't behave any different here, but this time she tells Trip to his face that she uses her physical attributes to manipulate him to her advantage. At last we have some real communication between our favorite couple! I thought he took it pretty well. Although he understandably wasn't pleased, there seemed to be genuine care and affection between them for a moment. I was a little fuzzy about that Pon Farr reference though. When was that? The only time they have ever been intimate was in Harbinger, so she must have referred to that, or not? That was her Pon Farr? Or was there something going on in Bounty that we don't know about yet? Anyway, finally we are making some progress!

The only thing that felt strange was how the two episodes seem oddly out of synch with the rest of the season in terms of continuity — something Enterprise has traditionally invested a great effort into. For example, why is Archer a mere First Officer on his own ship? How come Admiral Forrest is alive again? And why is the Temporal Cold War revisited after all questions have been answered and all threads have been resolved in Storm Front?

But those are minor details, really.

3 points for this one.

Demons      (3 points)

This episode absolutely kicked ass! Star Trek really is at is best when it tells stories that are allegories for social problems we have today, and I have rarely seen a more in-depth exploration of racism and hatred than in this episode. The story starts with a bang by introducing us to a complex and multi-layered character who clearly has some issues with other species. There is something deeply unsettling about this Paxton guy, and I think it is the awesome line delivery.

Peter Weller really treaded a fine line with his performance here, he could easily have overdone the scenery chewing and would have come across as a caricature of the 08/15 evil henchmen with no clue at all. But thankfully he totally avoided that trap! To no small amount, the believability of his character is rooted in the brilliant plan he had figured out. Most madmen have plans that look good but are in fact utterly dumb because they'll never work in the long run. For instance, some guys would have threatened that unless all aliens leave the solar system, they would use some giant laser to destroy all kinds of cities and populated areas. Which immediately begets the question of how long they plan to keep that laser aimed at those targets. A day? A week? A decade? You know, sooner or later you'll have to sleep, and then the good guys will do the ethical thing and bomb the shit out of you.

Not so Paxton. He recognized that threatening a few billion societies with a stationary laser won't be enough. What you really need is something for the fascists to rally against. You need an icon that incites hatred, and desire to kill and maim; something that appeals to the deepest, darkest sides that lurk inside of each of us. And what better way could there be to turn civilized people into murdering madmen than showing the TV image of a cute little baby girl? I have to admit, for a moment I got real mad too. That's right, I'm not perfect either. Seeing that cute little girl really made me want to go out there and beat up some foreigners! How dare they live in my country, pay taxes, and raise their daughters to be nice and beautiful just to lure me away from my own kind?

Of course, the many interesting angles on the issue presented in the story quickly calmed me down. Had I met some racist asshole a few weeks ago, I would have had totally no idea what to say to him. But after seeing this episode, I could easily rattle down a hundred different reasons why racism sucks.

Add to that the personal drama we got. Trip and T'Pol have a child. Again! The number of children had on the show is really amazing when you compare it to the number of times they had sex on the show. I also thought it was cool how it wouldn't occur to either Trip or T'Pol that it is possible to grow a child from someone's DNA. Well, thinking about Sim could have given them some pointers, but I was glad they didn't because that made it possible for them to have some really deep and meaningful conversations. Like T'Pol knowing its their child because she is Vulcan. That was awesome. You take a hair from both of them, grow a baby out of that, and the second someone hands them hard evidence of the child's existence, she knows about it. Aliens rule!

So I am on the edge of my seat and wonder how they will tackle this one. Thankfully, Reed's cloak and dagger friend knows pretty much everything you need to know. After a flabbergasting total of 20 minutes of investigating the carefully planned and highly secret scheme to raise all hell in the solar system, they have figured it all out. Terra Prime is to blame! Bastards.

Now that it has become clear that the Terra Prime people used Trip and T'Pol's DNA to grow their hate-inciting cute little baby girl, naturally Trip and T'Pol are the obvious choice to send on an undercover mission into their stronghold. It may sound odd, but it works if you send them there without any disguise at all, because the evil henchmen certainly wouldn't expect that to happen, so you have the element of surprise on your side.

And it worked nicely. They can uncover almost the entire conspiracy before they are taken hostage due to bad luck.

Then comes the time for Paxton to show what a complex character he really is. Any other henchmen would have killed them on the spot, but he doesn't. On the contrary, he invites them into his multi-functional spaceship mine. That was an awesome idea, by the way. Space flight and mining deep underground are two things that naturally belong together, I thought it would make perfect sense that a mine can fly at warp speed.

I gnawed on my fingernails when the mine took off all the while Paxton delivered one of his insightful, original, and well enunciated speeches at Trip and T'Pol, who stood there totally shocked and paralyzed. Yes, that's what happens when you have to leave without a backup plan. If they hadn't been discovered, they would have known exactly what to do, but with their plans blown into smithereens by the unexpected events, what could they possibly do? Alone in the room with the criminal master mind behind it all? Snapping his neck certainly wasn't an option, that much was obvious.

Anyway, I yelled at the screen in frustration when I saw the "To Be Continued" because I had absolutely no idea how that story would continue. In fact, I watched the episode right again in order to pick up all those subtle twists and unexpected turns the story made. I hadn't even noticed those the first time I watched!

3 points for this one.

Terra Prime      (3 points)

What an awesome episode. I dare say, it was even better than the first part. The situation is this: the evil Terra Prime people have taken over a giant laser, and threaten to shoot at Starfleet Command unless all aliens leave the solar system now and forever.

For a week I wondered continuously how the valiant Enterprise crew could possibly remedy that problem. When I saw their plan unfold on the screen, however, I was totally unprepared. If you haven't seen the episode yet, do NOT read this, because when it happens it is an awesome surprise. Wait, I'll add some spoiler warning, just to make sure. SPOILERS AHEAD! Okay, are you ready?

Archer and gang fly down there and overpower them in a phaser fight!

Awesome. Where do the writers get those ideas? I didn't expect that at all. I would have thought they'd steer the Enterprise into the sun, use the slingshot effect to travel back in time, and fetch some of those extinct whales that know how to communicate with Paxton.

Now that I know how it really played out, I realize this would have been stupid beyond imagination. Thank goodness we don't see that on the show.

There are some great scenes which show nicely that women really all become completely irrational the moment you give them some biomass grown in a test-tube and tell them it's their child. T'Pol certainly does. At one point, she marches into Paxton's office like a fury and outright demands that he surrenders and gives up his plan. If he doesn't, she threatens, she'll tell his men that he uses Rigellian medicine to stay alive. When he refuses, however, T'Pol just shrugs, turns around, and goes back to talking with the little girl who has no idea who she is. That was hilarious. Hehe, you better watch out, T'Pol. First you forget what you want to do from one moment to the next, and before you know it you'll find yourself craving tuna in honey sauce, or spaghetti with walnut chocolate.

While T'Pol is busy being all motherly to the little girl grown out of some DNA samples, Trip is busy helping Paxton get the giant laser in shape. Yes, no madmen has ever had time to make all adjustments before the plan is carried out; you always need one more thing done before you can actually fire the weapon, and you never have anyone who is qualified to do it but the guy who has come to stop you. That's just the way it is.

There are some additional twists in the story, of course. Like, that there is a Terra Prime spy on Enterprise, and everybody is really afraid that he'll sell Archer and gang out to Paxton when he learns of their plans. It's fortunate he didn't do that, because if he had, Archer would have been dead. Why exactly he didn't sell Archer out is one of those great mysteries that are never quite explained so that you have something to wonder about even months after you've seen the episode.

Also, the chick Travis had sex with really wasn't Terra Prime scum, she was in fact a member of Starfleet intelligence. Although her character had absolutely no relevance in the story, I was still relieved to hear that because I really cared about her a lot. She was the reason Travis had 10 lines in a row for the first time since Fortunate Son, so I think she was awesome.

At last Archer and gang land on Mars, parade into the spaceship mine, shoot lots of people who are not Paxton, and then all of them but Archer disappear without a trace so that Archer can have a heroic fist fight with Paxton in the end.

Once that's settled, the writers put us through the wringer about the fate of the hate-inciting, cute little baby girl. First she's perfectly healthy, then she is sick, then she healthy again, then it turns out she is healthy but will die anyway because Human and Vulcan DNA are incompatible, then we learn Human and Vulcan DNA actually are compatible and the problem is that the henchmen used bad tools to grow her. It was horrible. Trip and T'Pol stand in front of her glass tube and look unbelievable sad all the time. Phlox doesn't waste any time to assert that he feels very strongly for the little freak. Archer barely manages to resist the urge to deliver a speech. It was horrible.

I for one was totally sad because the hate-inciting, cute little baby girl is dead in the end. I love it when my emotions are manipulated by introducing completely random characters for no other purpose but dying in the end. I think that is so much more interesting than, say, committing to the Trip/T'Pol relationship a bit after it has been dangled in front of our noses for two years and letting them have a real child of their own.

Thank god that will never happen, because in that case I would have probably cried my eyes out when that kid was sick or in trouble somehow.

3 points for this one.

These are the Voyages …      (4 points)

What can I say?

This episode is off the scale. In years to come, fans all over the world will still speak the name These are the Voyages … in hushed tones because of the sincere awe they feel for the master minds that brought us this valentine gift. This episode really had it all.

The story is clearly meant to provide us with some clue regarding the significance of the Enterprise NX-01 crew in the grander scale of things. And that was really necessary, because after four years of watching Archer rescue dozens of planets, uncovering the evil spy array on P'Jem, settling the border dispute between Andoria and Vulcan, rescuing Earth from the evil Xindi, rescuing the entire quadrant from the Sphere Builders, rescuing the 31th century from the Nazi!Aliens, preventing a war between Earth and the Klingon Empire several times, introducing logic to Vulcan, fighting off the Romulans, and for all practical purposes personally founding the United Federation of Planets — after all that we really needed some clue whether the Enterprise crew was any significant.

I for one thought the reason why no-one in the future seems to know anything about Archer isn't that TOS, TNG, DS9, and VOY were created before ENT was, but that in fact the NX-01 crew really wasn't that significant. Good thing you guys set me straight here, I would have thought Archer was an idiot!

I also thought it was extraordinarily fitting that the final episode of Star Trek was a holodeck episode because it is a well-known fact that those are the ones the fans always loved best. It's a shame we had none of those holodecks on the NX-01. Really, that could have been so much fun, particularly for Brannon.

So a somewhat chubby Riker has to figure out whether he should disobey orders so that he can uncover some mad conspiracy that threatens to throw the entire Federation into war with the Romulan Empire, and he does so by posing for Chef on the NX-01. That's fucking brilliant. I could see right away how the discussions he had with our valiant crew provided him with tons of new insights into that. T'Pol comes for a visit, for instance, and he asks her whether she misses Trip. Man, if I were in Riker's shoes, that's the first question I'd ask too. Because if she misses Trip, then I'll decide to disobey orders and uncover the conspiracy. If she doesn't miss Trip on the other hand, then I'd disobey orders and uncover the conspiracy nonetheless. Should she choose not to answer my question … in that case I'd be screwed, of course, but then I could still ask Trip whether he misses T'Pol.

One thing I've wondered about is how the holodeck knows the answers to those questions. I hate to burst your bubble, Will, but it's not like anyone asked those people all those questions and recorded their answers in case someone might have to decide whether to disobey orders and uncover a conspiracy. As a matter of fact, since holodeck technology didn't exist at the time Archer and gang lived, what you are seeing is some stuff a fat computer geek put together in his off-hours mostly because he wanted to run the Vulcan Love Slave program with T'Pol in it. But hey, if it helps to talk to some computer program to make that kind of decision, I say go for it.

To be fair, Riker said that he thought the idea was nuts; it really was Troi's idea. Which is beautiful in a way, because that's exactly the kind of idea Troi had all the time back on TNG.

The attention to detail was awesome though. When Riker had the utterly pointless discussion with Phlox about how he ordered Trip to sleep back in Damage, and Phlox says that Trip had no choice because he was under orders, you see Riker note up and go hmmmm. On the other hand, when T'Pol said that she has come to embrace the notion that sometimes you have to follow your instincts rather than following orders, Riker's face brightens up and he goes ahhh. I was so enthralled that I almost forgot he was talking to a version of T'Pol who had the following her instincts bit hardwired into her personality by the fat computer geek.

Anyway, it was good to see that T'Pol talks to Chef about her intimate relationship with Trip just fine. Too bad she never talked to Trip about that.

Clearly all this helpful information is bound to exhaust a man who carries a terrible burden, so we need some B plot. Which is that completely random aliens have abducted some completely random child, about which we care deeply though, because it happens to be Shran's. Archer and gang fly to Rigel 10, shoot down the aliens, rescue the child, and off we go back en route to the signing of the Federation treaty. Now, as it happens, everybody underestimated the random aliens a bit. We thought they were a bunch of criminals with a Warp 2 spaceship. In fact though, they can easily catch up with Enterprise, can approach it completely undetected, and can transport onto the ship right in front of the Captain's doorstep. Uh oh.

Next thing we know, Trip is dead. Awesome. That was exactly what I wanted to see in the final episode of all of Star Trek. Especially since there was ample time to show how all of his friends reacted to the loss. It's not like they shoved Trip into some device in Sickbay, then had T'Pol sniff his uniform in his quarters, and then went on to handle the founding of the Federation bit in the last two minutes. Not that the founding of the Federation was actually shown, but I certainly understand that because the time was so much better spent on having Troi and Riker discuss how Archer's quarters are small, and show them wonder how Archer can survive without a fish tank.

Speaking of Archer, I loved how modest he is. Don't you think? What a hero. He never gave any of his senior staff any chance of doing anything when he was around, yet he is deeply worried that it might look as if he was trying to take credit. Some pedantic people would argue that not caring about getting credit for things you do is contradictory with worrying about nothing else the entire time, but great heros are often full of contractions, so that didn't bother me. I was busy being happy that Trip is dead. And what a meaningful death it was. Just imagine what could have all happened if Trip hadn't thrown his life away for no apparent reason. In the end, Archer might not have had the chance to not take any credit! Thank god Trip is dead.

Of course, since the entire thing happened only on the holodeck, Trip isn't really dead. That's just what the fat computer geek came up with to get rid of him so that T'Pol is single in the program.

Ultimately the episode was very satisfying. Not only didn't we see Archer not take any credit, but the story also added another layer of meaning to the TNG episode The Pegasus. I swear, if I ever watch that episode again, I'll look at it with completely different eyes. Knowing that Riker made his decision after cooking several dozen dinners on the holodeck really adds tons of depth and drama.

My favorite moment was at the very end when T'Pol said to Archer that he looked very heroic. I thought that was awesome. That really sounded like something T'Pol would say, and not in the least like something the writers would have her say to shove any Archer worship down our throats. And she was right. When I saw Archer running around awkwardly in his unbuttoned shirt, the first thing I thought was how heroic he looked. Call me shallow, but in great historic moments the first thing I wonder is whether the guys who sign the papers do look heroic or not. I thought he did, and I was glad T'Pol thought so too. Although telling him that was rather insensitive of her. I bet Archer thought that T'Pol thought she should tell him that because she thought Archer thought he didn't get enough credit. And that was the exact opposite of what he wanted!

So this is the episode that sent the valiant crew of the starship Enterprise and all of Star Trek off into the well deserved retirement. And it sure did in the most satisfying way possible. When it was over, I was so happy that I couldn't help but yell out: "Yes, it's over!"

FOUR points for this one. I said it was off the scale.


For the longest time I have wondered why I watch the show even though it thoroughly annoys me more often than not, and at last I've reached a conclusion. I watched it because the actors pulled off the amazing feat of making me care about those characters despite the way they were written. So I'd like to use the opportunity and say thank you to Scott Bakula, Connor Trineer, Jolene Blalock, Dominic Keating, Linda Park, Anthony Montgomery, John Billingsley, and everybody else who gave their best to create believable characters under difficult circumstances. I can't even begin to imagine what Mrs. Blalock must have felt when she saw the script for Bounty for the first time, or how Mr. Montgomery and Mrs. Park must have been disappointed by being neglected for four full seasons, or how much effort it must have been for Mr. Billingsley to keep a straight face when sprouting all this technobabble. I wonder: Had any other group of people played those characters, would Enterprise have gotten four seasons, even?

Unfortunately, it is moot to dwell on any of this. So instead of letting the pathetic wimper of a finale we got drag us down, I say let's remember the many great moments we had too, and let's make good use of that extra hour per week by using our own imagination. For me, that is what Star Trek is about; it's about being able to imagine things that seem to be impossible today, because if we can't even imagine them, then they will stay impossible forever.

Without a doubt, Enterprise has stimulated the imagination of millions of people from all over the world. What better thing could you possibly say about a TV show?

Return to Miscellany

A whole mess of folks have made comments

Peter, you rule! Not only are your reports great but your fanfic is the best out there too! I only hope that my ass kissing can inspire you enough to keep writing Enterprise fanfic because it is the only way myself and a myriad of other fans will have any peace after the lameness of the sendoff that the show got. You are absolutely right, this show sucked in so many ways, but boy, I LOVED the characters. PEACE OUT Y'ALL. XXX

that was frakkin' hilarious. :D Brilliantly done. Here's a mop; you'll want to clean up that puddle of saracasm you're standing in or you'll slip and break something.

Peter, while I am not as critical of the show as you are, I love you. Your satire is right up there with Swift's "Modest Proposal!" Brilliant!

Nailed another one, Peter. Love your deconstructions and your stories. And I have to agree that I got into ENTERPRISE because of the characters, too. Every new episode had me hoping for something better plotwise, something that involved the whole ensemble instead of just Archer or Archer/T'Pol/Trip, something that wouldn't make me roll my eyes even once during the show; and I didn't OFTEN get it, but once in a while I did and I guess it was enough to keep me watching. I will admit, there was a long stretch where I only watched for Trip. He seemed to be the most consistently enjoyable element of the show. (Phlox was also consistently enjoyable, but we didn't get to see as much of him as we did of Trip.)

I'm angry that they couldn't let the show end with a hopeful and optimistic future for ALL the characters. I feel suckerpunched for caring about Trip and his and T'Pol's relationship. I feel like the writers teased me for two years, then went "PSYCH! Just kidding!"

I'm sad the show has been cancelled. Despite my own eye-rolling and laughing my head off at the admitted truth of your deconstructions, I did enjoy the series overall and after four years, I'll miss having these folks visit for an hour each week.

I know I'm not alone.

ha ha ha..
very funny but..
the vulcan high command didnt know where the rebel camp was until after archer and tpol reached it.
that is why they tried to discredit them instead.

also the vulcans had been setting up a fake invasion of andoria for awhile.
due to that the andorians had most of their fleet in that sector so that when the real invasion fleet moved in it would be too late for the andorian fleet to reach them in time.
check out operation bodyguard and quicksilver to see how well a little deception can help an invasion force.


Okay, that was completely awesome... took the words right outta my mouth... especially for the very last episode... I mean... who WASN'T happy about Trip FINALLY being dead! *rolls eyes* Thanks for all that... it really got me laughing.

That. Is. Great. Sad thing is, I know people who think the exact same thing, seriously.

Very funny Peter, but will you please stop killing puppies now? Even if you do it in various humourous ways, it's not very fun for the puppies.

Fantastic reviews. They were so spot on. I also wondered at times why I continued to watch the show but like you it was because of the characters. The whole shoving heroic Archer down our throats was definitly the most annoying, but yet I kept watching. I think if it hadn't been for Trip though I may have given up after season one.

Laughing out loud, at work, on my lunch break. Have to get serious. But its, going to be hard to tear myself away. Thanks so much. That was way too funny.