Matt and Sean talk about what happens when the thing you forgot wants to be remembered. This episode continues the thread from the last 3 episodes of Star Trek Enterprise in a unique and fun way.
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We’re also taking a look at what each episode landed in. In other words, what was the world like at the time of original broadcast? So right now we’re talking about enterprise Season three, episode 20. Matt, we are so close to the end of season three. I can’t really. , we were looking the season, looking forward to the season so much, and then it suddenly blurred by it’s gone.
And before we know we’re gonna be hip deep in season four, and that’s the final season of this series, so, yeah. Yes. I can’t
believe we’re gonna get, we’re gonna be getting to the next show very soon. Yeah. It’s remarkable. And by very soon, I mean like half
a year away, . Yeah. Six months. Yeah. But soon is relative.
Yeah, so who are we? Well, I’m Sean Ferrell. I’m a writer. I write some stuff for kids. I write some sci-fi for adults. And with me is my brother Matt. Matt is the guru and inquisitor behind the YouTube channel, undecided with Matt Ferrell, which takes a look at emerging tech and is impact on our lives. Matt, how you doing today?
I’m doing pretty
well. It’s good weekend. How about you? I’m doing well.
I’m looking forward to talking about this episode. It’s effectively the third in what feels like a three. Long story. It feels very miniseries like of Yeah. Getting, you know, the show to a place where they’ve. Been in pursuit of the Xindi weapon.
They are looking for it. They find it, They have a battle in trying to reach it, and then there’s the licking, the wounds and recovering as they limp away. And then finally begin to build a bridge with the people responsible for the weapon and maybe an effort to more diplomatically shut down the conflict.
It’s, yep, all very closely tied. These three episodes are, one after the other in a way that feels more reminiscent of a show like Picard than it does the other seasons and other episodes of Enterprise, or even a show like Voyager, which preceded this and Voyager while having an overarching storyline of Can we get home for seven years?
Was. still very episodic and you could mm-hmm. practically shuffle episodes of Voyager out of order and it wouldn’t really have a bearing on it, cuz every episode, while still having that overriding theme did feel a lot more like, Oh, it’s. You know, you can, you can kind of watch them out of order at points.
This feels a little bit, little bit more like seasons of Deep Space Nine to me, where episodes clearly built one into the next, and you had a longer vision and a longer story arc that felt like a more three act structure as opposed to just an overriding. So that’s what we’re looking at. But before we get into this episode, we like to revisit comments on previous episodes.
So, Matt, what comments caught your eye? Well, there’s a couple from
Pale Ghost 69, regular commenter. Thank you. Pale Ghost. Yes. Thank you. Uh, one thing he mentioned was for the record, whenever I mentioned the specific platforms, YouTube would delete my. I have no context as what that’s about. Doesn’t surprise me that YouTube is auto deleting stuff because that happens all the time across my different channels where people will say, I don’t know why my comment got deleted.
And I go and I try to track it down and it’s, they put a link in there and for some reason that link got flagged for some reason. So I’m curious Pale Ghost, what that’s in reference to. Yeah. As well as if anybody else is noticing their comments, just vanishing, let us.
You could reach out through the contact information of the podcast too, like to email us directly, might be a better way for us to be able to get that feedback and then see if there’s something on our end that we can do to keep YouTube from doing that to you.
And then he also dropped a comment, this was on episode 68, which if we were talking about Azati Prime, which is the. Two before this? Yes, I think. Mm-hmm. ? Yes. Two Before this, the conversation with Doctor who should have happened a dozen episodes ago when they found the mining mining colony and learned more about the mammalian Xindi.
I agree that T’Pol’s bit was a bit overblown, but on my rewatch, I took it as her disease and Trillium use had messed up. Her more than what we see, and she was using Archer as a foundation to keep the mask up. We’ve already seen cracks forming with her relationship with Tripp and the jealousy she experienced as well as a couple more instances.
I know there are more, but I can’t remember them at the moment. I just wanted to bring that up cuz you and I have talked about that a couple times. Like the episode that’s still in release, it’s by the come out for everybody. , we did talk about that just a little bit, but yes. , they were clearly laying the seeds and the groundwork for something with her with, there’s clearly chinks in her armor that were being laid, but I don’t think they were executing up well in a sense of was it truly planned or was it accidental?
And if it was planned, it felt like they took a hard right turn. Without getting there a little more methodically cuz it was a little too subtle and then suddenly they just dropped it at a high level with her emotional breakdown. Yeah. So I just, I just found it a little clunky the way they executed it, which is
what’s catching me off guard.
Yeah. And I think that, I’m speaking for both of us now. Neither of us mind where. Landed with this, and we’ll talk about it in more detail in this episode because this episode also contains elements of the shifting sands beneath T’Pol as she’s trying to figure out how to manage her new emotional state and.
It manifests in this episode in two ways that I really, really liked. One was a continuation of the conversations with the doctor saying, Please help the other way was a manifestation in just her interactions with another person in particular Trip. Mm-hmm. . So I think that this. Episode is a great place for them to land.
It’s a great place for the show to be. It’s a great place for her character to be. I just don’t know that I agreed with if there’s 10 steps to her getting here. I think the first three were kind of either hidden or missing. Yes. And then by the time we see that these things are happening, we’re already at step five.
So I felt like it feels a little bit like, Oh. There was stuff happening. Did they intend it? Were we aware of it? But now that we’re here at step 10, I’m fully on board and saying like, Yeah, this is good stuff. So, yep, we’ll talk about that more as we talk about this episode. So as far as this episode, as I mentioned, this is the episode forgotten.
And you’ll all recognize that noise in the background. Yes. That’s the read alert. And that can only mean one thing. It’s time for Matt to struggle in reading what is ostensibly a synopsis of the episode. Matt, take it away and I’ll give you a heads up when it gets to the synopsis of this episode. Don’t look too hard.
Yes, just, just go with it. Just go with it. Just don’t look too hard.
Okay, , right. Here we go. The forgotten is the 72nd episode of the American Science Fiction Television series, Star Trek Enterprise, The 20th episode of season three. It first aired on April 28th, 2004 on the UPN Network in the United States set in the 22nd century.
The series follows the adventures of the first Star Fleet, Starship registration. XL one. Season three of enterprise features an ongoing story of following an attack on Earth By previously unknown aliens called the Xindi, a group of five surviving races who each evolved on the same planet. The enterprise enters the Delphic expanse, seeking to stop the super weapon with which the Xindi intend to destroy Earth.
Well, okay. So now you can see why I said don’t look too hard for the synopsis of this episode because there is no synopsis of this episode and that synopsis of this episode, it’s a synopsis of the season. It’s a synopsis of television as a whole. It’s a synopsis of the year 2004, but it’s not a synopsis of the forgotten.
So I’ll provide my own version of the synopsis of the forgotten members of the crew wrestle with things that they’ve been holding back as they are trying to repair the. And build a bridge with the people building the super weapon. Emotional repression. Yes. As mentioned, this is season three. This is episode 20, and this episode was directed and I was very happy to see his name appear on the screen directed by LeVar Burton.
This is his third of the season, his seventh. Overall, up to this point, he had directed two episodes per season in the first two seasons, and this time he got this third one as well. This episode was written by Chris Black and David Goodman, and this I thought was an interesting tidbit. This is the first time that these two solo writers would write an episode together.
The writing of this episode was a collaboration between the two of them, and David Goodman had to say about that collaboration. I know that I’m not given credit for writing one of the best episodes of Star Trek ever. It was a real collaboration with Chris. We split up the script and we helped each other writing the script with him.
Elevated the episode for me. That was one of the true one-on-one collaborations with a very gifted writer who is also very confident and understanding of what the rules were for writing Star Trek Enterprise. I thought that that was a very glowing and and lovely spin on pairing that up to this point hadn’t really taken place, and for people who might be working in television and are accustomed to working solo and having their own writing credit on an episode.
You did then be put in a position of, no, you’re gonna co-write this. Egos could very easily get in the way. And it really sounds like good approach. This with a, this guy really knows what he’s doing and it’s making for a better episode overall. And I think that shows in the episode. I think that this is a very, very well written episode.
Yeah, I agree. The original air date of this, as Matt mentioned, April 28th, 2004, guest appearance is included once again, Degra played by Randy Osby. Jamar played by Rick Worthy. The Xindi Reptilian captain was played by Bob Morrisey, who has played a number of different characters on enterprise. Seth McFarland surprisingly, makes an appearance as Ensign Rivers at this point.
Ensign Rivers in this episode does not have a. But the character will be reprised in a later episode in which they do actually name the character at that point. And it was upon seeing Seth, Seth McFarland in this episode that I thought, Whoa. I can’t act right now. Like this is . No, it was, it was not a, an easy one line of him like, but I did that.
Like you can almost see everybody on the crew, like, get him off camera, get him off camera, get him off camera. and the character of Taylor played by Kipley Brown in what would be a dream sequence, but a very emotionally impactful one. There’s also an uncredited. Guest in this episode. It is the photograph at the end of the episode of Trip’s Sister, which was a photograph of the actress who’d played her in previous episodes where they’ve had flashbacks to the Xindi attack and trip’s imagining of what that would’ve been like in which he saw his sister being killed in the attack.
The photograph at the end of the episode was taken on the Paramount. So either in anticipation of needing this or perhaps for something involved in casting of the show, for whatever reason, they had an actual photograph of her on hand for that. So I’d like to give her credit for actually being in the episode, even though it’s only a still image.
So April 28th, 2004. What was the world like when this episode? Well, Matt, you were still dancing your little heart out to Yeah. Each usher featuring Little John a Ludicrous at the Box Office, the number one movie of the week, Man on Fire. A terrific film. Earn $22 million, and this is a movie that is still available for streaming on Prime or Tobi.
Tobi being of course a free platform, so if you don’t have any other means of getting to it, definitely check it out. It’s a Denzel Washington tour de force and on television. On April 28th, 2004, what were we watching? Well, once again, sadly, we were not watching Enterprise. Enterprise continues to struggle in the ratings rating a 2.2, so it had about 3.3 million viewers total ahead of it were shows like WB Smallville, the NBC special of.
Life’s funniest moments. Matt, I know you remember that show as well as I do. Oh man. Oh yeah. Phlox had that 70 show in American Idol, both doing very well. 60 Minutes too was investigating how Americans were spending billions to find a perfect mate. That was money well spent and on abc, my wife and kids.
So I, I still don’t
get why it hasn’t recovered, cuz it was hitting around 4 million an episode for quite a while. And then after that, Hiatus where it came back at three, it really hasn’t come back from that. I think that this
is a, I mentioned this briefly in our last episode. If you only have one show for a particular audience, on your network.
Yeah. Yeah. And that audience only tunes in for that one program. You eventually are going to bleed out because that audience will, over time forget about the show because they are not getting a reminder advertising because they’re only showing up for that show. I know my experience with U P N at this point was specifically centered on enterprise.
I didn’t watch any other UPN network shows. It’s you, you are caught in a closed loop and you know, you, you end up with your audience if you start with 10 and then one week one of them drops out and now you’ve got nine and you’re not bringing anybody new in, and U P N is a network. its days we’re numbered.
Nobody recognized it. You know, clearly at the time there was a lot of effort and money going into it, but it wouldn’t pan out. And I think the other thing that was at work was this is the beginning of the explosion of well done programming being done outside of the network experience. This is the beginning of the growth of networking being done by USA tbs, T N t, Sci-Fi channel.
All. Yeah. Like the spreading out of the talent effectively. We are a few years away from a show like, uh, Battlestar Galactica really like kind of showing up almost outta nowhere and saying like, This is what sci-fi could be. And yeah, like when you think of the proximity of Battlestar Galactica to this, they’re not that many years apart, but they feel.
A decade, decade apart. They feel a decade apart, but they’re not. And that’s what’s, it’s strange when you, when you stop and, and you consider that. So I think that that’s what we’re seeing in these numbers. I think that they just didn’t have a sci-fi audience. I don’t think that they had a strong enough Trek audience.
I also feel like at this point, Star Trek is following literally 21 years worth of other star Trek. Enterprise is a fatigue, the tail end of fatigue. And you and I have talked about when this show had its biggest numbers, it was very samey. They may have lost the audience before they did the reset of season three and just couldn’t lure anybody back.
Even though the storytelling in season three is so much better than seasons wanted. So, Yep, Yep. And in the news, lots of things going on around Iraq on this day, April 28th, 2004. Among the things that were happening, intense flooding was breaking out in Fallujah. Fallujah would of course, dominate the news cycle as far as Iraq was concerned.
For many, many months after this, US forces responded to attacks in their positions by insurgents, artillery, and AC one 30. Gun ships were used to bombard gorilla positions. But the number of casualties at this point was not yet known. That was reported by the bbc, and then there was this from CNN, USA Today, Gallup, according to a poll conducted by those three entities, 71% of Iraqis saw the US troops in their country as occupiers.
While 19% of them were 19% of Iraqis saw them as liber. , although 61% say that ousting of Saddam Hussein was so worthy that it didn’t matter what hardships they suffered, 57% would like to see the US and British forces leave immediately. So here you have a situation where the argument on our side was entirely like good news.
Everybody we’re showing up to free you. And on the other side they’re like, Yeah, once you get rid of that guy, you can go. Yeah, not a, not a scenario where anybody was going to be able to get what they wanted. There was also this in the news cable tv. Giant Comcast abandoned its 66 billion bid to take over Disney setting a lack of interest from the Disney board.
Comcast in later years would go on to buy NBC and I brought that up. because what a different world. Disney owns everything Now what a different world we would live in. When you think about what Comcast has done with NBC and the critique that NBC continues to get, as boy has this network really drifted downward since it was purchased by Comcast.
When you have a network run by people who don’t know what a network is and making programming decisions when they’re not accustomed to being involved in the programming decision making world, NBC took a big step back. It lost a lot of ground that it, it controlled things like the idea of must see TV was invented by nbc and in the years since, well, it’s not quite been that, Imagine if Disney, Disney who now owns everything.
Everything had been purchased back then by Comcast. I think it would’ve looked a little bit like what’s going on with HBO right now. I think that it would’ve been a, it would’ve destroyed the Disney brand. I think they would’ve, they would’ve destroyed it. What is happening with HBO right now where hbo, Warner Brothers is slowly being sliced up?
And parceled off the shutting down of things like Cartoon Network is now going away, which means Adult Swim is going away. And the the talent and the effort and energy that for decades has been going on at Warner Brothers is slowly being dismantled by the discovery purchase. I think the same thing would’ve happened with Disney.
I think they would’ve sliced up. The company sold off discreet parts. And we wouldn’t see the behemoth that we have right now of Disney sitting in the middle of not only Disney, but Marvel and Star Wars. The theme parks, like everything would’ve, would’ve been vastly different. Well,
it all comes down to like the, the whole art versus business.
There’s a tension in the entertainment industry where those two are always at paddle with each other. Yeah. And it’s where you fall in that spectrum. And Comcast falls so hard in the, we’re a hundred percent business. The bottom line, we didn’t wanna milk every dollar we can and the art is secondary. You can watch that on nbc.
There’s, there’s gotta be a a, a, a area in the middle that you gotta. Of you gotta give artists a chance to be artists and work on their art without stifling that creativity too much. Yeah. Uh, Comcast doesn’t know how to do that. Yeah. and neither does discovery cuz they’re doing the same thing to HBO right now.
Yeah. So it’s, it’s, it’s sad. So I
brought that up for the, like the, Alternate reality thinking, but the stories around Iraq, I brought up mainly for the juxtaposition of the calamity of a war in which everybody’s goals were so clearly not in the same place that mm-hmm. , the Iraqi people were not in the same place as the US or the uk.
There, there, there was very little commonality of purpose and I think that, An interesting thing to keep in mind in the storytelling of this episode, which. Whether it’s just because it’s in the zeitgeist, whether it’s like, cuz these news stories were breaking at the time of broadcast. These were not news stories that were breaking at the time of production and writing of the episode.
So I think it’s very interesting. Yep. That this episode is really rooted deeply in measuring what is your goal and how in line with the people around you is your. This episode has a number of different characters, both on the Xindi side and on the Star Fleet side, going in different directions and really taking moments to kind of look at each other and reassess.
And they do a nice job with the parallelism in showing how, What’s happening on the Xindi side is it’s a splintering, I’ve mentioned that before in previous weeks. Mm-hmm. , that we’re seeing a unified group splintering, and on the other side we see the star fleet people. Even with disparate goals coming closer together because they’re, they are building bridges between each other and with the Xindi as opposed to allowing these differences and different goals to fracture them.
So all of that is, is evident in this
episode 500 interest that you’re kind a little surprised by how prescient it was given that these, this news was breaking as these shows were airing. Where it wasn’t happening during pre-production, which would’ve happened months and months earlier. It doesn’t surprise me too much because when all, when the wars were starting, it was very clear to see, Oh, this is not gonna go well.
This is, this is, yeah, this is gonna go down a path. You can look at history and how stuff like this has played out in the past. And I, you could totally see how that even a year earlier was sparking ideas for what they could explore in episodes. And the timing of it is amazing how it kind of coincided, but it doesn’t spark me too much that the writers were able to kind of envision what kind of commonalities there are in war and occupying territory, and how the people would not see it the same way as the occupiers had all splinters out.
It’s, it’s fascinating to me. It’s great to see that the writers were putting on there , What was the, uh, Johnny Carson? Yeah. The, uh, car character. Carac. Carac. Yeah. Putting on the little carac routine.
Yeah. The. The episode, like similar ones, the, the, we talked about last week where there were a number of different storylines that were all kind of seamlessly woven together in that one.
I feel like this one is another demonstration of that, where you end up with scenes that in isolation feel complete, almost like a plot line is presented in. Four minute sequence. In others, it is sprinkled throughout the episode, but all of it feels of a unified hole, even while feeling while you’re watching it.
For the first 30 minutes of this, I felt very comfortably meandering. I felt a little bit like, Oh, now we’re over here. Now we’re listening to these people. Now we’re doing this. The one thing that felt like they were clearly using it. Tension line to pull you forward was the exterior shots of the plasma leak on the outside of the ship getting bigger and bigger and bigger.
And yeah, so you end up with a literal physical representation of something tightly contained within the ship is breaking out. And what’s happening with the characters, things that are tightly contained are breaking out. So it’s very on the nose, but not so on the nose as to be a problem or, or eyerolling.
No, it’s not. It’s problem. It’s, it’s like there’s this through line of the ship is damaged to the point where there’s a calamity brewing and nobody’s aware of it yet. But you have just to throw out the ones that are most. We’ve already mentioned T’Pol is dealing with her shifting sands of I’ve got emotions now and I can’t shut them down the way I’m accustomed to.
She literally goes to the Dr. Phlox and says, You gotta help me. And he says, There’s nothing I can do. You may be in a terrain of having to figure this out. You did this to yourself over months. It, who knows if it will ever repair. So I’m here for you. There’s nothing I can do. Then you have Tripp who reveals at a certain point that he’s 48 hours without sleep.
He is tasked with a letter to a dead crewman, basically a letter to her family to talk about her. The captain says you worked with her, you knew her. You should write a letter to her family, and this. Just one task. Too many for the exhausted trip, who is clearly burying himself in work. And with the, It comes across as you know, it sounds, at first glance, like a little bit of ego.
If I go to sleep, the ship will explode. Yeah,
there’s a lot of ego there. He feels like he’s carrying the weight, but it’s,
he’s clearly, it’s, he’s taken the reality and flipped it on its head when he says, If I go to sleep, the ship will explode. What he’s actually saying is, If I’m not working, I will explode.
So he is in a, in a pressure. Point where the reality of what is happening, having people around him dying, has brought back the morning of his sister that he’s not done processing yet. He’s been able to put it on a back burner. There’s a lovely scene in which he has a very wing speech about. I convinced myself that she was just one of many victims and I forgot that she was my sister.
You’re talking about that conversation
with T’Pol in the hallway. My, cuz that was one of my favorite
scenes in the entire show. Absolutely. My favorite scene in the entire episode. I thought that that scene was, was fantastic. And while all of this happening also, I was just, just to get all the plot points out real quick.
Yeah. While all that’s happening, Archer is meeting with Degra and finally has the, the ship. After stealing in the last episode, the warp coil from the aliens that they met, just by happenstance they’re able to get to the meeting with Degra. It turns out that the meeting is taking place at one of the spheres, so they have a very nicely concealed little location to just kind of like hang out for a while and chat.
Mm-hmm. . And there’s a lot of just walking around and chatting in this episode, which I really liked after all the action of the previous episodes, and at this. It seems clear Degra is fully on. Like I’ve been given enough proof. Get it. Oh, he’s on board. He’s like, I can see that he’s on board. I’m, I’m here with you.
He is arguing with his counterpoint point played by Rick Worthy, who is as the sloth, like version of the Xindi, still in a place of like, what if we’re being lied to? And it sounds the, the, his dialogue sounds very much like T’Pol’s dialogue around time travel, like Yeah. Yeah. He gets. He knows that it’s true, but what if they’re lying because he’s hesitant to, on the whim of having just met Archer, throwing away years worth of an alliance between all of these species.
And it seems without him putting too fine a point on it that he’s thinking in terms of if we go back to what we were doing previously, the Xindi are just gonna tear themselves.
He’s being very pragmatic cuz he, like, he, there’s even a reference to the, um, who are the water based ones? The aquatics. How they’re enigmatic.
Yeah. And he’s concerned. The reason he wants all this like die hard proof is because without it, the aquatics who knows what they’re gonna do and they need the aquatics to be able to hold enough of the council together. And so it’s like, you can tell he, he, him, You can tell believes, Yeah. But he’s being super pragmatic of, he doesn’t wanna see the Xindi Council shatter because of this, and so that’s why he’s hammering home and trying to get all of that, that
Yeah. And the conversations between Degra and Archer. Are high level conversations for the most part, like providing of proof, taking him and showing him. I’ve got, you know, like I’ve got Xindi technology right here. This is what we brought from the past. This was the bio weapon that they were building. All the little pieces that he’s putting together.
He’s got Reptilians in the morgue. It’s the first time we’re seeing the morgue. That was actually a set built for this episode. So he takes them to the morgue. I’ve got these reptilians, like, Where do you think I got them? And like, Well, you could have gotten them from anywhere, but Degra is the one just like, Yeah, I get it.
This has been happening. This is all true. And what can we do to stop the weapon? What do we have to do? All of that is happening. Can, can I just, I was just gonna say real quick that that then runs full on into the through line of the pressure building within the ship. Yeah. In the form of the explosion now takes place and we see Deborah’s response to seeing the humans at work and trying to put this fire out literally.
I think the acting on his part is phenomenal because you can see he is carrying, Dre is carrying so much guilt. This experience of, of learning from the humans, the evidence that they’re showing to say, you’ve been spun a lot, you’ve been told a lie in order to destroy us. He is now taking all of that in and with it.
The resurfacing for him of the guilt of, I killed millions of people on a planet who didn’t. and the acting on his part, the guilt, the fact that when the writing around trip, being as belligerent as he is to D’S face and Degra doesn’t get defensive. He doesn’t say really anything in defense of himself.
He’s willing to, he’s, It feels like Degra internally is thinking, I deserve every word. I deserve all of this. I’m gonna carry this for the rest of my life. It’s like, Oppenheimer in developing the nuclear bomb, spent the rest of his life arguing for disarmament because he personally felt like I have introduced to the world a thing that cannot, we cannot put this genie back in the bottle.
It’s some really top notch acting and writing and directing. I think. Yeah,
that, that was gonna be the part I was gonna try to bring up, which was one of my favorite parts of the, the through line was how day grow was being taken around the. by the captain to see everything. It was like wherever the captain was, digger was like his little puppy behind him.
And Digger wasn’t saying a lot you, but you could see through the acting how much he was absorbing of what he was seeing that humans go through. The resilience, what they were trying to do, especially when he was watching them try to stop that plasma explosion that was happening on the ship. It. You could see like not only did he believe the captain in what the truth was, but you could see him starting to empathize with what they have put the humans through.
Yeah. And how the humans were still inviting him on board the ship and showing him around. It’s like you could see that, that he had that tension and it was kind of like unlocking a lot of stuff. And there was a conversation between the two of them when they were the captain was gonna show him their, what they understood about the spheres.
Yeah. There was this conversation where he said, I probably shouldn’t have, you know, knocked you out and wiped your memory. Yeah. . And it probably wasn’t good to build trust and Degra just kinda looked at him, went like, No, that was the, like the, the best thing he could have done. But it was, you could totally tell from that scene that Degra understands Yeah.
Why they did what they did
and he completely buys into all, it’s in that same, it’s in that same conversation. I really loved when Degra was looking at the scans they had of the interior of the. And he is like, these are remarkable, detailed scans for a military vessel. And Archer says we were a vessel exploration.
Like this is not what we, we’re not here to fight anybody. And having Degra have that moment of like, Holy crap, well maybe we can get you back there. Like the, the culmination of all of that of, of, you know, the bridge has been built. It’s not super sturdy. And it’s not very wide. No, but it’s there. One person at a time can get across it, but it’s there.
And that’s, that’s some really great storytelling. Yeah. To go back, you wanna loop back to one of the earlier, I wanna loop
back to the council, T’Pol. Yeah. the hallway conversation. Yeah. Obviously it’s, there’s undercurrent there because she’s grappling with her own emotions and she’s, you know, her, the words she says to trip about the whole I envy.
You, you humans can deal with emotions like this because we feel it too. But clearly saying to him at envy how you’re able to kind of take this and roll with it. Yeah. Without saying to. , I’m breaking down. Yeah. Um, there’s this undercurrent and, and just by her putting her hand on his shoulder. Yeah. What I found interesting about that conversation was if you, if you rewind T’Pol two seasons earlier, she probably would’ve been saying similar things to trip, like just listening to him being a listener and then being a kind of a counterpoint to him just kind of unloading.
But the one difference now that she’s been with him for so long and she’s going through this emotional turmoil, was just the small gesture of putting her hand on his shoulder and then that comment about I envy, yeah, how humans can handle this stuff was really the only difference. But it was so subtle and so nice, not over the top.
It comes back to me for the, the writing, how you talked about these two writers. I love the writing and the dialogue in this. The performances were great. I keep saying it again, again. Jolene Blalock is a better actress than she gets credit for. Yeah. She’s able to give some nice, nuanced, uh, performances to this Vulcan character, and it’s bringing new things to what we’ve seen for a Vulcan on camera than we’ve ever seen before.
Yeah. And so it was, it, I thought it was really, really good. That was probably my, my favorite scene
in the entire episode. Absolutely. This was the best scene for me as well, and. There was a moment for me with like a little emotional gasp from me when she put her hand on his shoulder. It’s just such a small gesture, but it does so much for what she’s going through and what it means to him.
The way he responds to it too, he puts his hands on her hand and he just kind of like, they’re hugging. Without hugging. It doesn’t move beyond a simple, you know, reassuring gesture, but it is. So much deeper than what would’ve taken place two years earlier where he might have vented about the thing. And she might have said something, but the connection again, that bridge wasn’t there yet.
Mm-hmm. . And so it’s, it’s on full display. And the other aspect of this episode that takes, it’s like, it feels like it’s three steps removed from the focal points of the episode, but the use of the plasma fire. The building of the plasma fire from just a storytelling perspective. It’s like seeing a ticking time bomb in a handbag and knowing, mm-hmm , oh, now it’s done to 10 minutes, now it’s done to five.
You just know this thing is gonna blow, and when it does, the response being, Well, we gotta go on the outside of the ship. We gotta put this thing out, and then, From just a physical action perspective, it’s gripping. Like there’s nothing about that sequence that feels, even though we’ve seen them on the outside of the ship before, we’ve seen them doing stuff like the episode where the mine had attached itself to the hull.
We’ve seen these characters doing similar things, but it felt, in this case, like. We’re doing what we have to, to process the stuff that’s bubbling underneath. It was such a perfect metaphor. Yep. What’s going on in the episode in Archer’s experience with having to deal with literally delegating, mourning to other members of his staff?
The episode includes a speech from Archer that is reminiscent of speeches we’ve seen like Kirk give. To crew after the death of, of Spock or the, the moments where a passing of a character like Tasha Yaar, where we’ve seen the morning. Being part of the story. And in this he refers to the 18, which is the 18 deaths since being attacked in the Azati Prime episode.
And there’s an aspect of that speech that suddenly it like hit me like, like they’d never forget. September 11th patches that firefighters wear here in New York City. As soon as you said the 18, it suddenly occurred to me like, These people are gonna wear the 18 patches on their, On their uniforms. Yeah.
Like this is gonna become a thing and it’s going to become a through line for all the people on that crew. And it’s a very impactful speech. But the fact that he has to then delegate reaching out to families to other members of his staff, simply because he’s got too much on his plate, he’s. There’s 18 people that need those kinds of communications to the family, and he can’t as captain, do it alone.
So he reaches out to trip to take care of one of them, and that being the one that punctures trip’s bubble that he’s kept himself in. Mm-hmm. . The dream sequence I thought was, Oh, that’s such a good scene too. It’s very nicely done and there are so many times. This series or in other series where dream sequences are a little too on the nose or they’re distracting, or you just feel like, Okay, I know it’s a dream, you’ll just get past it.
This one handles it so perfectly by. flat out saying very quickly into it trips, saying like, Oh, I’m, he’s, Oh, this is a dream. I’m dreaming. And then just has a conversation with a dead woman. And it’s a very nice moment of this, this dead woman. And it’s clearly trip’s, memories of this person speaking to him and saying, Talk about the fun that I had.
Talk about the jokes that I played. Talk about the things that you said about me when you took me onto this position. Talk. How I did this, this, and this. So he has things to talk about, but he can’t write the letter because to write the letter would be to reawaken for himself the personal hurt and the, the way that that is managed in, in that scene, like I found it very difficult in thinking about this to really kind of.
Recognize, what is your A story? What is your B, and what is your C? It’s similar to the last episode. Everything feels of a whole, and when you have that kind of blending, Of, It’s not just about braiding storylines. It’s literally like they’re cohesively. One that is like, that is top notch. So I give this episode for me, this all three of them working beautifully together as a, as a trio, almost like a long movie.
This is a beautiful piece of storytelling and I give it very high marks. I give this episode in a plus. Yeah,
I, I, I’m. To take your, how it all feels like a cohesive hole. . I’m gonna bring up Master Chef cuz I’ve been watching Master Chef recently. But it’s like, you know how they come up with a, a plate and then as they’re being critiqued for their food, they’re like, it’s not, doesn’t feel cohesive.
It’s like this thing and this thing and this thing. They don’t feel like one thought, one piece. Um, it’s the same thing for this, where this all feels like a cohesive meal that they’ve given us where it doesn’t feel like I’m going through one plot through. It’s it, you are just very comfortable just kind of weaving your way through all these different storylines cuz they all feel cut from the same cloth.
And because of that, it’s everybody struggling with the emotional situation they’re in. It doesn’t matter that you’re shifting from character to character to character because it’s a very similar throughline. We’re all, uh, going through. I, I keep coming back to, for me it wasn’t just the writing, it was also the acting like the, one of the things about having degra as this kind of like little puppy that’s being taken around the ship Yeah.
And seeing everything. And degra is just taking it in and absorbing it like a sponge. One of the things like if this was like a soap opera, that would’ve happened like when, when tripped in. That one room starts to hammer on Degra About where? Where de. Is offering like help and asks how things are going.
And Trip basically starts to go, Oh, how are things going? Yeah. And starts to come at Degra and really start to hammer him with these very sarcastic cutting remarks. In a soap opera, you would’ve had Degra going, pleading for forgiveness or saying something, and then it would’ve been like lots of turning away from the camera and conversations like that.
Yeah. Degra basically says virtually nothing. In that entire sequence. And it’s pretty much all tr to just choose the inside of his, just hammering on him. It’s chewing him, chewing him, and Degra is staying there, just taking it. And so again, it’s the actor just reacting to all of this undercurrent of hatred that’s coming at him.
That’s Randy and him realizing he can’t say anything.
Yeah, that’s Randy OGLs be doing a great job as Degra. And I also think that, like you mentioned, that is not only Randy Ogelby doing that, that’s LeVar Burton, like the two of them letting, letting the character. Literally boiling over, take the focal point and the two of them playing the part of like, how do we make sure that the entire room is seen, not just the boiling over pot, but how is the entire room?
but, but, but was brilliant about having deger, basically saying nothing. , it speaks volumes of him as a character. Yeah. To know, there is nothing I can say right now that is gonna help this man. Yeah. Nothing I can say. So I just need to let him say his piece and just let this happen because there’s nothing I can do.
And it speaks volume of. Volumes for his character. Uh, I just ate that scene up and I also liked how the Captain came in and basically says, How are repairs coming Trip? Yeah. Like, like you better basically the undercurrent of like, shut up dude. Yeah. And the staring the stare down that he gives to Degra as he responds to the captain of just a four few more minutes.
Yeah. like in this long stare. And then he like exits the room. I thought that was. It was, it was, it was nice to show the relationship of how the two of them don’t need to really say. To each other. The undercurrents there. Yeah. Reading between the lines. Is there, There’s also
the chewing out that trip gets from T’Pol, which I found to be perfectly pitch perfect.
Her emotions are right below the surface. She’s very upset with Trip for the way he’s conducting himself and doesn’t hold back and saying like, the captain is trying to do something. You idiot. She basically, you know, be you idiot in parenthesis. But it’s there like, like why would you like, I, it’s, it’s like she’s saying, I understand your.
Circumstances right now and how hard this is for you. But you can’t let that derail what is attempting to be a peaceful solution to this, that you’re not serving anybody by doing that. And it’s all of that is said in one simple line from her. It’s really, really, really top-notch. So what I would ask Yep.
Of our viewers and our listeners, was there one part of this? Like for me, I. The cherry on top for me is the scene between Tepa and Tripp, where he breaks down mm-hmm. and she gives him the comfort that he needs in that moment. But as a whole, it. It’s almost impossible to say that that scene is that much better from the rest of the episode.
It’s also, mm-hmm. , we were talking about it all feels like a cohesive hole, like there’s not an a plot line. But I’m curious from our listeners and viewers for you, was there something that stood out as particularly above the rest of it, or was there a plot line that stood out as the most important of all of them?
Let us know in the comments. Next time we’re gonna be talking about E Square. And Matt, do you have any predictions about what that episode’s gonna be about? Trip gets a math lesson. Mm mm Finally he learns about square roots. That’s right. Before we sign off, Matt, is there anything you’d like to remind our listeners about what is coming up on your other channel?
Yeah, keep uh, keep tuned to undecided cuz I’m going to be releasing another video. My home build that’s going on. I know there’s a lot of people that are interested in that about building a sustainable home, net zero home, got to tour the factory. There’s a whole lot of stuff coming out, so stay tuned
As for me, please check out my website, sean Ferrell dot com. You can find that information about my books. You can also just check with your local book seller. Amazon, Barnes and Noble, local bookstores, public libraries, wherever it is. You wanna find your books. You can find my books there. I recently received a very lovely email from one of our listeners who checked out my books and shared w.
A couple of my picture books with her class. She’s an elementary school teacher and she shared them with the class and then her class, one of my books is called the Urch. Her class drew their snitches, and I got to see those pictures, so it was really lovely. That’s awesome. Yeah. That’s so cool. So I’d appreciate any interest in my work in that way.
And as far as future work coming out next year, I will have a middle grade novel coming out. It’s the first part of a multi-part story, and it’s called The Sinister Secrets of Sin. So I hope people will check that out when it comes out. Don’t forget, you can jump into the comments. Let us know what you think.
Like I said before, is there an A plot for you or a a plus scene that you really think stands out in this episode, or do you just wanna share your thoughts with it as a whole? Jump to the comments, let us know. You can find the contact information in the podcast description or on YouTube. You can just scroll down to the comment section below the video.
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