Archive for May, 2013

Trekathon 735: Terra Prime (2) (ENT)

May 5th, 2013

Archer has to stop Terra Prime from firing on Earth.

Still too complicated, but the core plot makes a bit more sense this time around. But the main villain still seems like he’d be more at home foiling 007 than NX-01.

What, exactly, was the point with the hybrid baby? From any perspective? I don’t understand why Terra Prime created it, it seemed to be an unnecessary add-on to their cause. I don’t understand why they used T’Pol and Trip, there must have been plenty of other DNA sources around. And I don’t understand what the point of saying ‘she died because Humans and Vulcans aren’t compatible’ only to strike that a few moments later with ‘No, it’s cool, they can do it’. Deeply confusing and misguided.

Callbacks: We see the Mars Pathfinder, at its Carl Sagan Memorial Station – complete with plaque.

735 down, 2 to go.

Trekathon 734: Demons (1) (ENT)

May 5th, 2013

The formation of the Coalition of Planets creates a bit of stress on Earth.

The villain here is straight out of a James Bond film. He has a long monologue explanation, but more directly he has a giant flying mining facility, takes over a cannon and uses it to fire on the moon. Actually, I take that back – most James Bond villains keep it a little bit more restrained than that.

The episode is a bit of a mess all round – too many threads running, between Travis’s reporter girlfriend, Trip and T’Pol’s apparent surprise daughter, plus the Coalition of Planets negotiations. It’s just too much to be coherent. There was a clear ending to get to, the writer just seemed to throw a bit too much in on the way there.

Funnily enough, I believe this is the first episode in all of Trek to have scenes set on either Mars or Luna.

Callbacks: The first Vulcan-Human hybrid. We also see a video of Colonel Green from WW3, last mentioned in The Savage Curtain.

734 down, 3 to go.

Trekathon 733: In a Mirror, Darkly (2) (ENT)

May 4th, 2013

Archer steals the USS Defiant from the Tholians.

The first half is a bit lost, with the only highlight being a Gorn fight – nice callback sure, but not the most interesting way to spend time during the episode. They don’t make nearly enough out of the mirror universe nature of the ship – it had more potential than just the cue for a mutiny by T’Pol.

But the second half picks up substantially, with Archer’s attempted coup, T’Pol’s counter-mutiny, and the revelation of who the secret mastermind really is here. Hint: her name rhymes with ‘Roshi’. Sorry, I mean ‘Empress Roshi’.

There are many great touches, but my favourite was dressing everyone in original series uniforms. The perfect reference back to the start, just as we’re reaching the end.

733 down, 4 to go.

Trekathon 732: In a Mirror, Darkly (1) (ENT)

May 4th, 2013

Commander Archer leads a mutiny to take command of the ISS Enterprise.

So, remember 668 episodes ago, when the Tholians tried to steal the USS Defiant? It turns out they were from the past of the mirror universe, and this episode tells the rest of the story. In a welcome departure for mirror universe stories, there isn’t any cross-over with the ‘home’ universe at all, everything is set in the mirror universe.

Unlike DS9, we get the attractions of the mirror universe in terms of allowing the actors to have some fun, and an opportunity to work out what the ‘dark side’ of everyone is. Phlox in particular is great as a gleeful vivisectionist, but all of the counterparts work well. There’s maybe a bit too much skin in Hoshi and T’Pol’s costumes, but that is consistent with everything else from the mirror universe.

But the cherry on top of a great episode is the USS Defiant, and the full 60s style bridge. But we’ll see some more of that next time. Changing the opening credits was a nice touch.

Callbacks: The origin of the mirror universe Terran Empire. And Phlox is the inventor of the pain booth.

732 down, 5 to go.

Trekathon 731: Bound (ENT)

May 3rd, 2013

Archer acquires three slave girls, apparently traded for most of his brain cells.

Archer and Reed (among others) wander around the ship panting after three Orion Slave Girls, in the most embarrassing thing Star Trek has put on screen since Precious Cargo. Of all the various elements of the Star Trek universe that did not need expansion, I think we can safely put Orion Slave Girls at the very top of the list. After avoiding decon gel for so long as well.

It isn’t made any better by the fact that the situation is discussed explicitly. And it’s not made any better by one of the Orion Slave Girls turning out to be the ones in charge. This is exploitation pure and simple, and it’s not even in service of an interesting story. Insulting to everyone involved.

Callbacks: Surveying for the first Starbase. And the Gorn get a mention.

731 down, 6 to go.

Trekathon 730: Divergence (2) (ENT)

May 3rd, 2013

Enterprise has to stop the Klingon’s from destroying their own colony to stop the virus.

Phlox may need an ethics refresher. While I agree with him on the ‘don’t kill patients’ thing, I think that engaging in biological warfare probably also fits under ‘not ethical’, even when done to save a planetary population. It was a well acted scene, but it felt just a bit too far out of character for me.

The transfer at warp sequence is both one of the silliest things Star Trek has ever bothered to show on screen, but I have to admit, also one of the coolest. It’s also about the only consequence of the ‘Trip goes to the other ship’ plot, which seemed to serve little or no purpose.

Callbacks: Interestingly, more than the Klingon appearance is explained – we also get some hints at why it is that Klingon culture was so different in TOS. And yeah, that was Section 31.

730 down, 7 to go.