51: The Xindi – Star Trek Enterprise Season 3, Episode 1

Matt and Sean talk about how adding a splash of Star Wars and a pinch of new costumes remakes a series.

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everybody. In this episode, we’re gonna talk about new haircuts and what they can do for your crew. That’s right. We’re talking about enterprise episode one of season three. We finally made it to season three, which means we’re talking about the xindi this episode dropped on September 10th, 2003. And now you’re asking why is any of that important?

Well, here on Trek and time, we’re talking about all of star Trek in chronological order, which means we’re talking. The first stories of the star Trek universe, which is star Trek enterprise. Well, fun fact. This is the season where they introduced the term, the, the phrase star Trek to the title of the show.

Up to this point, it’s just been enterprise now, its star Trek enterprise. That explains everybody’s confusion. Does it? No. So we’re looking at all of star Trek and chronological order, but we’re also taking a look at what the world was. When these episodes originally aired. So we’re looking at the latter days of 2003 at this point.

And as I mentioned, it’s an episode that aired on September 10th, 2003, which when we get into the news of the day, I think is going to create an interesting juxtaposition. With what was going on in the episode as usual. I’m Sean Farrell. I’m a writer. I write some sci-fi. I write some stuff for kids and with me as my brother, Matt, he’s the guru and inquisitor behind the YouTube channel undecided with Matt Farrell, which takes a look at emerging tech and its impact on our lives.

So we have the writing, we have the teching, we have the star treking. How you doing Matt?

I’m doing good. How about you?

I’m doing okay. As usual. We like to jump to the comments at the beginning of the episode. Don’t forget. You can. Send us information about yourselves and your thoughts on the show, through the contact information in the podcast description or on YouTube, you can just scroll beneath image of our smiling faces and you can leave a comment there.

Matt, do you wanna share some comments from previous episodes?

Sure. There’s a couple I wanted to bring up from the expanse, which was the season two final. We have one from longtime listener and supporter, robo Trav. I agree with you guys about the cling on plot line being completely unnecessary and distraction from the story.

I also didn’t care for the way the Vulcans were portrayed the scene with the Vulcan doctor, trying to surreptitiously psychoanalyze Archer was ridiculous, but Fox of course was still great. It was just very out of character for the species. The very idea of Vulcan psychiatrist seems. Just off. Yeah, I agree.

100%. We didn’t talk about that scene. And yes, that scene felt really kind of dissonant to me. It didn’t quite

jive. Yeah. And it played fast and loose with something that they had constantly been talking about, which is Vulcans don’t lie. And then they have this guy show up and he is lying every direction.

And it just sets up this whole, like to Paul has been wrestling deeply with the idea. Vulcan culture like her, you know, really self-examining and then to throw in a character like that. That seems to be so casually and cavalierly twisting facts. Yep. It, it makes you wonder like, well is to Paul the outlier here.

Is she the one who doesn’t. Doesn’t quite get it are all the other Vulcans, perfectly comfortable with doing whatever. Yeah. It just didn’t, it didn’t feel like it was made of the same cloth and, and like robo points out. I do think that the only defense of that scene is that you get to see flocks, be the defender of the, of

the crew.

The, the other comment is along another Vulcan line here, which this is something else we’ve never really talked about, but it is always been in the back of my head. Whenever these, these scenes happen, I feel it’s from Lambert, Rodney. I feel to Paul’s continuing resistance to accepting time travel as a possibility when faced with mounting evidence is truly frustrating and unrealistic.

At the very least, if the show is going to continue with UL’s cred in cred, I can can’t speak. Yeah. The audience should witness her wrestling with the notion of time travel instead of just simply flatly denying the possibility without a logical argument. Yeah, it does irritate me cuz it’s like, she’s been through all of this with Archer and the rest of the crew again and again, and again, you would think at this point she’s still wrestling with it.

Yeah. But the fact that she’s still taking the party line of the Vulcans have proven the time travel cannot happen. It. Come on at this point, she should at least be saying, okay, there’s a lot of holes in our theory and our knowledge here. Maybe, maybe there is something here. Yeah. It’s

frustrating. And to go further it’s as, uh, Lambert is pointing out here, she doesn’t have a logical argument.

No. The entire point of the depiction of Vulcans is that they follow logic to the final conclusion. Mm-hmm and. The Vulcans are usually the ones in the room you think about SP relationship to Kirk and McCoy, Kirk and McCoy will be standing on one side of the room saying that can’t possibly be true and Spock like mm-hmm, logic dictates that this is the only possibility here we’re left with no other options.

It does not make any sense that you would have a Vulcan in her position, arguing against things she has literally seen from a position of dog. It just doesn’t make any sense. So good element to point out Lambert. Thank you for the comment. So, as I was gonna say, oh, sorry, we’re being interrupted by that sounds like a read alert.

It’s Matt it’s time and little fun fact. What you are about to read is actually an abbreviated version. I lopped off the part, which is. Series is an American television series, because the way it was laid out on the page, it would’ve been so much reading. You would’ve needed a separate podcast. So I boiled it down to this.

So enjoy. Okay

set in the 22nd century, the series follows the adventures of the first star fleet Starship, enterprise registration NX. Oh one beginning with this episode, season three of enterprise features an ongoing storyline following an attack on earth by previously unknown aliens called the xindi at the end of season two.

In this episode, the crew, the enterprise attempt to track down the location of the xindi home world. By asking a lone xindi enslaved in a mining colony after being tricked by the mining foreman, captain Jonathan Archer, Scott Baula and commander Charles trip Tucker II Connor trier escape with the xindi with assistance from Lieutenant Malcolm Reed, Dominic heating and the shows new military assault command operations, Mako team

And that’s pretty much it there. We have it. xindi wow. Season three, episode one directed by Alan Croker written by Rick Berman, Brandon Bragga and originally aired on September 10th, 2003. Guest appearances include Richard Lineback, Stephen MC catty, Tucker Smallwood, Randy Osby, Rick worthy, Scott McDonald, Marco Sanchez, a very early appearance by Daniel lake.

which I was interested to see him in this, knowing that his days ahead of him, he would well for a little while. He’d be on a little show called lost. And then beyond that he’s been growing as a producer. So he is an extremely prolific and talented Hollywood power man. Also in this episode, re Nathan Anderson, Steven Culp, Chris Freeman and Adam Taylor Gordon.

It is a large. List of extras for this episode, we see a lot of faces, some of whom we will see again in other episodes, there’s also a bit more heavy lifting with set design, some impressive sets, some impressive locations that go beyond the norm, a new room aboard the enterprise, which is supposed to be a battle command center.

There is the inclusion now of the Mako team, which as is pointed out is supposed to be a full blown military operation. I think they’re trying to depict at this point, that star fleet is not considered military. There’s some questions around the efficacy of like, what is the role of this? I mean, it looks like it’s supposed to be five guys.

That’re really sending out five guys to exact revenge for having blown up all of Florida and parts of Venezuela. I don’t like there’s a little bit of illogic in their inclusion there, unless it was also. If there had been some sort of reference to, and they’ve brought along a super weapon, like anything other than like, oh, these five guys are gonna take care of everything.

That’s great. Right. Yeah. Right. Uh, as I mentioned, this air date was originally September 10th, 2003. So here we are at almost the second anniversary of the September 11th attacks in the United States. And I think this show it’s very interesting. It’s almost. Two on the nose with very, the lingering repercussions of this kind of terror attack, they are on their way to exact revenge.

Meanwhile, the United States at this point had largely wrapped up military operations in Iraq after invading post invasion of Afghanistan. The United States was in the midst of two wars, both of which were arguably about setting things, right. While not quite knowing how to get to write. And this episode starts to tease out some of those very questions of, well, how do we do the right thing?

And is it okay to do the right thing in the wrong way? And I thought it was interesting that we’re only two years past September 11th, and it’s already that mentality’ already leaking into popular culture, the kind of questioning of how quickly are we jumping to this. So we’ll get into that more in a moment, but what else was going on in the world?

Well, Matt, get ready. You’re gonna be singing along to where is the love by the black eye PE for quite a few weeks. Oh, geez. And at movie theaters? No. Well, what were we lining up for? You will never guess. I am actually scratching my head over the fact that the number one movie, the week that this episode aired made 6 million in the box office.

Matt is at me. Or was there a day that labor day weekend was basically a non-lease weekend. Now that’s way too low. We basically have constant new releases practically every month of the year. It no longer seems like there’s the dead zone. It used to be. February was where studios dumped all the movies that they didn’t know what else to do with.

And it was the dead zone for, for the block, for the box office, for a movie to be the number one movie to make $6 million. Total just seems to me like this must have been labor day weekend, and I’m trying to recall, was there a day when movie makers simply wouldn’t release new movies around labor day?

Now that doesn’t seem to make sense? Yes. But is that the way it historically.

Yes. That’s that that’s, that was the way it used to be. But at the same time, 6 million seems way too low, even for that kind of like dip of the season.

Yeah. Yeah. Which made in fact what

movie it is. Yeah. Oh my God. I don’t remember this

movie at all.

Yes, here we, here we go. Uh, ladies and gentlemen, we’re, we’re going deep into apparel reality where the number one movie of the week was Dicky Roberts, former child star. It’s a 2003 American comedy. Directed by Sam Weisman, starring David spade, who co-wrote the film with Fred Wolf. It includes Mary McCormick, John Levitz, Craig BICO, Alyssa Milano, and Rob Reiner spade portrays a child actor who fell into obscurity as an adult, and who attempts to revive his career by getting apart in Rob Reiner’s next film.

In addition, the movie shows Dickey interacting with numerous former child stars played by over two dozen actual former stars, lampooning their careers, such as leaf Garrett, Barry Williams, Corey Feldman, Manuel Lewis, Dustin diamond, and Danny UCCI. It is remarkable. How many of those people are now dead? I had zero recollection of this movie.

I read this description and read about the movie several times. I still have no recollection of it. I don’t think it exists. We’re moving. Okay.

And what was on television? That’s what, you’re all wondering what was going on television? Well, not good news for enterprise. Why would that be? You’re asking and rightfully so September 10th, 2003 enterprise on UPN was enjoyed by 4.1 million viewers. Definitely not the low point for viewership for the series.

But when you consider it, say better, it’s actually, um, it’s up from the end of season two, but it’s not great. When you consider that 8 million people were watching a rerun of my wife and kids, 5 million people were watching a repeat of the seventies show 5 million people were watching a rerun of ed and Smallville, which was also a re.

WB was getting almost 3 million viewers. So enterprise with a brand new episode, the only new episode of the evening only getting 4 million. I think we’re seeing a show that a core audience that was its only audience and the show was having difficulty reaching beyond those borders and in the news. Well, here’s the news story that stood out to me from the New York times.

And I think it feeds into the same thing I was talking. Earlier about the us, the culture was starting to wrestle with, wait, what are we doing? What is our goal and is what we’re doing the best way to get to that goal. Post nine 11 from the New York times by Mike McIntyre, two years later, the Patriot act terror, less fading for some Ashcroft says in Manhattan.

Standing on the site where Congress adopted the bill of rights, attorney general, John Ashcroft brought his defense of the Patriot act to the edge of ground zero yesterday and suggested that critics of the act, a sweeping anti-terrorism law quote have forgotten how we felt on September 11th, 2001. I think this is a critically important thing to keep in mind that effectively what John Ashcroft was defending was holding onto.

The fear, the anger, the terror. Yeah, the anger of September 11th. Don’t process it. Don’t move on. Don’t try to take a step back, figure out what happened and why don’t look for causes. Just hold onto the anger and the fear to defend the Patriot act in those terms, I think is accidentally revealing your hand.

Oh yeah. And big time where we were. The other headlines from the day revolved largely around ongoing terror attacks in the middle east, Israel had just experienced a terror attack in a deli that was targeted because it was a place where soldiers were known to get lunch. And it was one of the deadliest terror attacks in years in Jerusalem, seven Israeli soldiers died that attack.

So the war on terror was not. Being won Afghanistan. Iraq had both been invaded, active military operations were winding down in both places or over, and yet both those places were in the midst of some kind of rebuilding that we know looking back mm-hmm long term would not hold. So what was the goal? How were we getting there?

These were things that were beginning to be reported on and talked. In popular culture and they had already in just two years already leaked into storytelling. Like what we’re seeing in this episode of enterprise, when this episode starts, we see that the crew has been on the hunt for the ZDI for six weeks.

They’ve made it through the expanse and they are now in unknown territory and you get right off the bat, the sense that they are just wandering around in the dark.

They’re all angry. Everybody’s very

frustrated and angry. There’s a lot of anger. You have the chewing out scene, which I think was right out of the, uh, starting gate.

You end up wither having a moment with his main security officer Reed. And he, he rips ’em apart for having suggested that they might not be using their time. Well, not the kind of action that we would expect from arch. During the first two seasons, this is not, this is an Archer who is carrying a pretty big chip on his shoulder.

Well, also pressure

because they are the only ship trying to defend, not just, just humans in general, but the entire planet of the earth. So it’s like, he clearly the pressure is getting to him the fact that he cannot, they’re not making any progress. Yeah. So his, for me, it made sense why he’s lashing out.

It didn’t feel out of character at all. It, it fit

pretty. yeah. This episode felt to me like if you didn’t know any of the previous storytelling, if you were jumping in completely, just based on the synopsis at the beginning of the episode, it would not have taken long to get a sense of what the show is doing.

And mm-hmm, it, there were points in the first two seasons where I think you could have dipped in and out of the show and it wouldn’t have matter. , but this feels very much like the beginning of some other kind of storytelling where the tone of this reeks of we’re not gonna resolve this issue by the end of the episode and oh yeah.

This feels

like a long term. Yeah. Play.

And my question to you, Matt, is, does that, did that resonate with you this time around? Did it resonate with you? Yes. When you first watched the series and does it resonate with you.

Yes. Uh, I, we kind of hinted at this as we were going through the end of season two of like, just hang in there, we’re getting to season three, hang in there.

We’re getting to season three. Part of the reason I felt that way was my memory of how I felt the first time I watched it, as well as how I’m feeling this time, watching it, the show actually feels like it has a purpose. Mm-hmm now where it didn’t before it feels like it has something to say, which it really didn’t before.

and it’s doing something interesting that we haven’t seen in star Trek before, which is exciting. Yeah. So it’s it’s, to me ticking all the boxes of what I was hoping for, just like, please find your footing, find it, something can get behind. It’s kinda like when the next generation brought the Bo again, it was like, to me, that’s when next generation felt like it found it stride.

Right. And it like started hitting things at all on all cylinders and like, jean luc got turned into a Borg and then rescued and all that kind of stuff. It’s like, that’s when next generation was like, okay, now we’re like fighting weight and we’re, we know what we’re doing. This is what this show feels like.

To me, it feels like, okay, the xindi and the expanse, this whole thing. They’ve turned a corner. Yeah. So it’s like, I’m I’m I was on board from the first, like 10 minutes, like I said, it’s like, you could see the frustra. If I came into this show, never having seen it an episode before I could step into this.

Yeah. And very quickly grasp what’s at stake. What’s going on? Why is he so angry? Oh my God. They’re trying to protect the entire planet earth. It’s like, okay. That’s why he’s stressed out beyond belief. And so it’s like, it’s very easy to step into this season and it felt very, it felt like they crafted it that way deliberately because it, it seemed like they were taking this as.

Okay. Let’s wipe the slate clean. Let’s kind of start the show over. Let’s add star Trek at the beginning of the title. Let’s give this a, a starting point where people who kind of gave up on the show can come back in and kind of get it to it from the very beginning. And let’s see if we can pull people together and get them stuck for an entire season.

Yeah. Instead of going in and out episode to episode. So it felt like it was. Designed to try to get people to come in and then stay week to week to week to week. Yeah. So hopefully they’re gonna try to stick that, that 4.1 million people, they got this one, it’s like, it’s clear to me that they’re trying to hang onto that 4.1

and not lose anybody.

Yeah. And what’s interesting is if you scratch the paint, you can see it’s the same metal, the nuts and bolts of the writing at this point, I think are pretty clear time. Travel is still a part of this storyline because as we move through this episode, we jump to the end. We’ll talk about things kind of in and out of order.

Uh, a bit they reveal that there is when they get to the location that they believe is the xindi home world. They find that it was destroyed decades earlier. So the question becomes if the xindi are trying to destroy earth before earth can destroy the xindi home world, but the home world is already gone. What is happening here?

What is the, what is the order of events? How can this possibly be true? So time travel is no different than the entire series set up of the idea of the temporal cold war that’s going on. The biggest difference is the temporal cold war literally was introduced with a story that revolved around the Klingons mm-hmm so.

The first go at this series was, well, let’s introduce this crazy new element, the temporal cold war, but let’s do it with all the known players of star Trek this time around. They’re like, okay, that’s not working. everybody’s too beholden to what we know the future of all these different species will be.

So we can’t be like, oh, the Klingons are now going to grow tails and be leopards, you know, it’s we can’t do anything to these people because we know what Klingons are like in the future. So they finally recognized, oh, maybe the problem is too much known space. So literally just taking the ship into.

Through a cloak called the expanse where once they’re on the other side of it, there’s really no communicating back they’re on their own, puts this series in footing, similar to what Voyager had while mixing it with the temporal issues that they’ve tried to introduce the idea of. We don’t know the order of what these things are gonna be like.

Then you get to that newness. And one of the newness elements that I feel like was here is they’ve added a few drips of star wars into the mix. This feels very star wars to me, especially prequel star wars, where you see the nefarious group of villains, which at a certain point when flock is looking at the DNA of the xindi that they’ve come in contact.

His entire interpretation of this is nothing is really making sense because that’s a Indy and he’s got skin like a human, but the DNA I have here is reptilian. So how can this possibly be? And when we see what appears to be some sort of conference of xindi super villains, we see multiple species. Well, the xindi in the prison camp that we meet.

Says, we don’t have a dominant species. We have five different species that all kind of buy for dominance. And depending on who you talk to, each of them claims to be the dominant species. This is the equivalent of here on earth. If we had the UN and the UN was made up of humans, bees dolphins, like every conceivable mix is, is represented and.

That to me feels very star wars, the insectoid clicking talk, the whale song coming from the giant tank of the very clearly aquatic creatures, the humanoids and the lizard people, you know, talking to each other in spoken language. But the other parts of it feeling intentionally off putting all of that to me, had a sort of star wars feel to it.

And the other place where it felt like star wars was when they. End up at the planet where they know there’s a xindi on a crew without knowing that what they’re actually stumbling into is a slave operation. And end up in a situation where the various players, like the manager of this mining operation, walking around with his breathing mask, that he has to pull in front of his face every once in a while in order to keep himself alive.

And he’s struggling for breath. Most of the time, that all felt very star wars. To me, if mm-hmm , it stepped into being star Trek. When the rescue operation. When you had the very military operation, the sort of decorum of the military operation of the star fleet personnel showing up to rescue their, their other crewmen that felt like star Trek.

But the elements that were a little more, we have to shoot from the hip were kind of like piecing together an escape route. They go through a whole underground sewage plasma event, escape route, all of which, which felt very new. For track, it was in environments that seemed very well thought out. And a lot of money clear, clearly going into set work and set design that we really haven’t seen in enterprise in particular up to this point.

And it had a kind of shoot from the hip feel that I don’t think we’ve necessarily seen in. The, even the original series, it, it, it had a different tone to it. And I wondered if you picked up on that as well. I didn’t pick it up.

Like you said, it felt very star wars to you. It did not feel star wars to me at all, but I see what you’re getting at the vibe was very different than what we’ve seen, but for me it didn’t feel that I think the reason I didn’t feel that shift was because everything that’s happening on the enterprise, Felt very normal.

It felt very mm-hmm, what we’re used to. And it felt very personal and the seeds that were dripping for the threads of the different storylines with teal, with trip, with the captain, with Reed and his new nemesis, the head of the makos, it’s like all that kind of stuff. It was laying down the very kind of personal interactions that we expect out of star Trek shows mm-hmm and how they’re gonna unfold and change and evolve over time and challenge each other.

That aspect felt very star Trek to me, but the vibe with the introduction of the, the xindi once again, it’s like, we’ve seen alien aliens on star Trek before mm-hmm but this is the first time we’ve seen them as, oh, this is one species. Yeah. Together in their little. Doom patrol little setup they had where they’re having their nefarious meetings

and machinations.

It really you’re getting at, but it kind of set up a, almost an anti Federation at that moment. For me, it felt like an anti Federation and the depiction of how the, the heroes were going in, not with swagger, but with grim determination, I think was also a departure from the series where. You know, we’ve seen the operations, you mentioned, uh, Picard’s experience with the Borg, even in that Riker Riker’s response to that entire operation and how to conduct a battle against the Borg, which would allow him to rescue his captain and still be able to defeat the borg in that moment, mm-hmm, felt like it was operating within decorum that we had come to expect.

And in fact, that’s part of. Is at play. There’s that moment in that episode of next generation, when he’s conducting the operations, where in the battle it’s reported that the Borg are ignoring the saucer section and Riker’s response to that is as you should captain, because he knows Picard, doesn’t see the saucer section as the primary target in that he’s using that against his captain.

That’s all very star Trek. Thinking, whereas this, when they wander into the mining colony, it feels very different. And. The way that they even have to negotiate a price of liquid platinum, that all of the negotiations run money and value feels outside the norm for star Trek. Well, I would

say for me, the reason it doesn’t is that this is enterprise Federation doesn’t exist yet.

Right. And like there, they still don’t even have a prime directive. They’re flirting with it. They don’t have it. So it’s like, for me, it still felt very star Treky because it’s like, we’re seeing the formation of the foundations of why they have these different principles and how they operate that we’re used to.

So to see them struggling with different aspects of this makes sense. So here we are. I don’t disagree kinda going in there. I don’t disagree with any of that. We have them with this. But we have this nine 11 mentality of them just grim determination. And so like, you brought up the exact example of them in the mining colony, kind of going in there in a way we’ve never typically seen before, which changes the vibe.

Yeah. But at the same time, the finger gets handed to Archer and his disgust at like, why did you do this? Was very Federation, star Trek of like, This is inappropriate. yeah. It’s like this, you know what I mean? It’s like, they’re going in there, like we’re gonna do it no matter what it takes. And why did you hand me a guy’s finger?

Yeah, this is completely inappropriate. So it’s like, it still felt very star Trek. That’s part of the reason why I didn’t feel like the vibe had completely shifted for me. Mm-hmm um, it still felt it. On the rails. the star Trek, like choo train. It didn’t feel like it jumped off the rails at all with this five change.

It still felt like it was on course. Yeah. For

what we’re used to. I don’t disagree with any of that playing I’m those boundaries. Yeah. When I think I’m trying to, uh, convey is that in comparison to itself, this feels very different from season two. Yeah. That this, oh my God. This is a, yeah, it’s a, it’s a reset.

It’s a reset to a degree that is really quite surprising in. You know, within itself, it would’ve been like if in season three of Voyager, they got back to earth. It, well, let me it’s, I didn’t look into

this before we start. I didn’t look into this before we started talking, but like we’ve always bagged on Berman and Bragga, mm-hmm for feeling like they’re burned out.

Yeah. And they’ve been going to the old playbook. It’s not working, but they keep going to the playbook and it’s still not working. And this one, I don’t know how much. Influence they had or how much they were forced to make this shift. Yeah. Or did it just take them a couple of seasons to realize we can’t do this the way we’ve been doing it.

We have to come up with something new because this ain’t working. I’m

curious about this. I don’t know how much. Yeah. Yeah. I, they were involved in writing this episode. So I’m, I’m, I’m very curious as to, as you’re just saying, like, was there something going on that was. Going to did network executives say, look, your numbers are not good enough to continue.

Like this is, this isn’t working. Were they in some way pushed into doing this? Were

they scared? Straight? Yeah. It’s like, they were kinda resting on their laurels and then they may have a, the show’s gonna get canceled unless you changed things. Yeah. And they were kind like, oh crap. So they kinda went back.

They’re very, they’re very talented guys. Yeah. And so like, it feels.

Oh, this is the

Berman bragga that we know. It’s like, okay. They’re kind of, yeah. Reinventing themselves.

Yeah. What’s interesting is that there’s. The reception of this episode, overall, wasn’t super strong. There were some reviews at the time, which said, uh, IGN in particular gave it a one outta five and compared the Macs, the Marines to Starship troopers and the aliens, the xindi were compared to Farscape, which I think is an unfair comparison, because I think Farscape is a really good show.

So I’m like, I’ll defend, I’ll defend Farscape to me. The thing that this show is doing, I find it similar to Stargate universe in, yeah. You know, in Stargate universe was doing something that the most easily readily available comparison would be dev Voyager. And the idea of like we’re super far away and we trying to get home, but I actually feel like this reset feels more like what was happening on Stargate universe, which.

Our listeners or viewers haven’t seen that series took the Stargate model. And instead of the Stargate being on a planet, it was on a spaceship and they find themselves aboard this spaceship, which is incredibly ancient. They don’t know who built it. They don’t know how it works. Exactly, but they’re just trying to get home.

Um, This felt like that to me, of taking, taking this crew into a place where, okay, we’re not gonna be able to rely on, oh, let’s go do this. Fill in the blank from known star Trek lore, like it, the first two seasons really feel like a chore because everything that they were trying to do, 90% of the time was stuff we knew what 200 years in the future would be.

And here we are in a position of they’re going up against a species that we’ve never heard of before. They’re going up against a species that apparently attacked out of a fear of being destroyed. So in our star Trek knowledge, you could make the logical argument. Well, maybe the reason why we don’t know about them is because humanity does destroy them.

So you end up with the actual stakes. As Matt pointed out, the idea that they start this with, we’re gonna do whatever it takes, but the moment they’re handed a finger, they kind of reel back. Mm-hmm you end up with some elements in this episode that stood out as clearly trying to plant seeds for the future.

You have trips dream in which. He is, he is the one who is being depicted as living the pain of the attack on a daily basis. Yep. Archer feels the burden of the mission trip is the one who is holding onto and having difficulty processing the loss of his sister. And it’s manifesting itself in these nightmares and the inability to sleep.

And it is affecting his overall health to the point where flock in an attempt to help alleviate this because apparently the medicine of the future doesn’t help you sleep tries to connect trip with, T’Pol for some Vulcan acupuncture or pressure techniques to help trip sleep, which then leads to you.

Season talk about this season three has let of a lot of stuff that was unnecessary stuff from the first two seasons in very good ways, but apparently it held onto one thing which was okay. Okay. How can we work sex in the show? I,

I want, I do wanna talk about that, but I also wanna say, I like what they were doing with trip and T’Pol in this entire.

Storyline. It, it didn’t feel out of place. Mm-hmm I thought it was good. I liked, I liked to Paul’s reluctance to help him because she knows trip. Yeah. Is belligerent and will just not wanna do this, but she is willing to give it a shot because she clearly cares for the crew and does want to help if she can, but doesn’t see.

Think he’s gonna take it. I did like how they were setting this all up. They do have to titillate for some. Bizarre reason. And so to have a scene with her, with her shirt off holding her breasts yes. Moaning harder, harder. Yeah. Uh, was you, there was no masking what they were trying to do. Yeah. And it could have been done in a such a tasteful way.

Yeah. And

still had

a, I don’t wanna say erotic, but they could have still had it an intimacy.

It was this

ultimately an intimacy to it. Without being gratuitous and it, it went into that gratuitous territory with her yelling harder, harder. Yeah. It was just, I don’t know. What’s wrong with them. dunno. What’s wrong with them?


felt like it, like you’re saying, there’s, there’s a way to promote the intimacy between characters and intimacy between characters on star Trek is something that has existed from the beginning of star Trek. Some of the most heartfelt moments of the original series are. Nurse chapel looking at Spock.

And there’s, there’s an element of longing there that is, is nicely rendered without it being. And then nurse chapel took off her top and went to Spock and said, I needed to bring you these samples, like the way that this is played out with, you know, you could have had. One, the way it was shot. You never needed the full frontal shot of T’Pol with her hands over her, her breasts, it could have been shot from the back.

It could have relied on her giving him instructions, saying you’re going to have to press much harder than you might think. And I’ll let you know if you’re, if you’re doing it too hard, but to have it be in the moment of harder, harder while she’s got her eyes closed, none of that was necessary. And. If it was also all done while they were talking about anything else, you could have had a moment where the dialogue about another subject could have revealed that in this moment, there’s an intimacy, which is not about sexual charge, but about letting down of barriers.

Ultimately it means more to both characters and us and our audience as an audience. If trip lets down a barrier that he. Desperately holding onto, he has nothing at this point, but pain and for him to let down a barrier and reveal some of that to, to Paul, especially since the series started with him being the most distrustful of her.

So in this moment for him to reveal something, he’s kept hidden from Reed and from his captain to let her know. Yeah, I’m really struggling with this. This is, this is hard for me. Could have been really impactful. Instead he stands there and says, look, I can’t have sex with you. He literally says, yeah, I’m, I’m honored, but I can’t have sex with you.

He, the writing in this moment is literally taking something that women complain about all the time, which is any kind of attention given to a man is interpreted as sexual. Up to this moment in this scene, she has not said anything that would reveal any kind of sexual attraction in any way, shape or form to trip.

But the moment she says, now I will give you the same massage you just gave me. His response was, well, clearly you’re trying to have sex with me. and I sat there. Yeah, just like, come on. Can we get past the 13 year old? Fan fiction and just get into, like I said, if the two of them fully clothed, like, I’m sorry, I could locate your spine without having to see your naked back, like fully clothed.

If she walked him through, here’s what I could teach you. And while they’re doing this, he is revealing something about his personal pain that he is going through. That would’ve resonated better than what is played up for titillation and worked against the scene. It is, yeah. Him in that moment, like they’re laying, they’re laying out.

The idea that trip is so is shutting down because of his morning for his sister. He’s not gonna pick up on sexual over. He’s not like that would be distracted from everything would, he would be so distracted by everything that’s going on inside his head. He, even if somebody did say like, Hey, do you wanna go to the movie night with me?

And maybe we could share some popcorn and maybe hang out afterward. He’d be like, no, I’m not into that. I’m gonna go to bed early. Like he’s not gonna pick up on those cues for him to read her action and the way he did doesn’t actually make sense within the context of the character at that moment. So. It was, it was a, like a bad, it was an element that left a bad taste in my mouth.

And I just was like, you you’ve done so many good things with resetting this season. And I disagree with the, the negative takes on what this, how this show was interpreted at the time of like Starship cup Chi per clones, and far escape, you know, knockoffs. They’re trying to do something. With a series that is literally like, this is now four decades of star Trek.

They’re trying to reimagine where they can go with this with this universe. And yeah, maybe it’s a little bit referential to other things, but when as much science fiction exists in the world by the year 2003, as does. Of course, they’re gonna refer to things that we’ve seen before. Of course there might be a whiff of star wars or a whiff of far escape.

I don’t, I don’t, uh, hold any of that against the series. In fact, I think it’s good for them to try and tread a little bit into terrain, which seems different from what we’ve seen before. So they did so many nice things with this episode overall, I really felt like, okay, this is a good starting point for the next part of this show.

And I, and like you’ve said previously, We’re looking at some exciting episodes and storytelling for season three, but I just, that one element, like I’m fine with the two of them having like a romantic storyline between the two of them. I’m fine with that being planted. Yes. I’m fine with their be, you know, the beginnings of the two of them looking at each other in a different way.

That’s all perfectly acceptable. We’ve had romantic relationships and star Trek from the very beginning. I have no problem with. Is just make it fit within the parameters of what’s going on with the characters in this moment.

Now how much we’ve been talking about this one scene? You’re talking about something that’s two minutes of internal episode.

Yeah. It’s like, I do wanna, I do wanna emphasize for my review of it where IGN gave it, what was one outta five out of five. Yeah. That seems absurd to me. I’d be given this like a four to five. Yeah. It’s like, this was a really good reboot yeah. Of the series. Yeah. They’re, they’re laying down. Really strong threads that you can see coming.

Like, you don’t know what’s gonna happen, but you can see they’re laying down a bunch of threads of stories. They can explore over the next, over the coming season. It’s exciting. Yeah. The show actually feels like it has promise a newness to it that the first two seasons did not ever have. So it’s like for me originally watching this and rewatching it, now, it.

Yeah. It’s like, this is where the show to me gets good and gets interesting. And I’m excited for the next few episodes that we get

to talk about. Yeah. They, they hinted things like tensions between Reed and the military crew, which at a certain point in this very episode, there is a little bit of the lessening of tensions as Reed sees.

Okay. There’s a purpose for this military crew here, but it hints at a kind of, Abys like storyline of what is the mm-hmm what is the relationship here between a crew that has been built around exploration? And they’re forced into this mission of like, oh, you’ve gotta go defend humanity and you’re taking along a military component and it raises those questions of, okay.

What is star fleet? What is the overriding mission? Does military. Interaction taint that or is it need to be incorporated into that? So you have that element added in, in, I think a really nice way. It gives Reed a different place to go with his mm-hmm constant refrain of this ship. Isn’t run tightly enough.

Now he’s looking at a military crew and he is like, well, we don’t need to be that tight. And so it puts him in an interesting place. You have them in an isolated location where they are forced to. Operate in ways that they’re not accustomed to like they’re stripping stuff out of their ship to barter with people.

That’s, that’s a new element. That’s very Voyager. Yeah. That’s very Voyager. We haven’t seen that in this series before. And the interaction between the crew and the knowledge of the crew of each other. Is on display. You don’t have the same kind of like, can we trust the Vulcans? Because, well, that’s largely been put on hold they’re off by themselves and they all know and trust to Paul.

And the thing that stands out the most, uh, is everybody had a new haircut. So. Yeah. Yeah. From the moment you start, like, like T’Pol new look. Yeah. like, oh, T’Pol got a new outfit. Like, yeah. They’re off in deep space. They’ve never been here before, but she’s got a nice new outfit and her hair looks really nice T’Pol.

Did you do something with your hair? It looks great. Yeah. Even archery had a new haircut, which made him look like he hadn’t showered in about three weeks, but yeah. So that’s. I think that overall, I agree with your summary of, you know, give it a four outta five. I think that this, I think it hits a lot of very good notes.

It still has those things that I’m just like, okay, can we just let go of that? But overall, like you said, it’s three minutes of the overall episode. And on the whole, I thought this show, this episode did a lot, including it had action that actually made sense. There were some tense moments. Like one of my favorite moments in the episode was them trying to get through the plasma ducks and they have the debate of, do we keep going up or do we go back because we’re about to get fried.

And that whole moment seemed very, uh, well crafted and made what would’ve otherwise been a couple of seasons earlier, probably just a couple of guys running up a staircase. Turned it into something completely different and a real, uh, nail biter in that moment. So I think that this episode did a lot of really good stuff.

And like Matt just said, I’m looking forward to the next couple of episodes and coming up next next week, we’ll be talking about the episode anomaly. Matt, any predictions, what will we be talking

about? Things flying around shuttle bay. we didn’t

even mention that. Which, which we didn’t talk about.



but I like that part. Yeah. I like that part too. So we’ll probably be talking about that. It’s just another element of the series that at this point, they, they did a nice job of planting some seeds that we were not directly referenced in this episode. So we’ll be getting into more of that. Before we sign off Matt, is there anything you wanted to remind our listeners about?

What do you have coming up on your other channel? Well, I would just recommend

checking out still to be determined our other podcast, where we kind of follow up on feedback from my undecided videos. And by the time this one’s out, Sean and I just talked about heat pumps. Yeah. Got a heat pump, all the things.

So listen to that.

As for me, you can check out my website, Sean ferrell.com you’ll find out some information about my books there. Or if you just directly go to your local bookstore or Amazon Barnes and noble, wherever you’d like to pick up your books, you can find my work there or your public library.

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