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Thursday, October 02, 2003


Those of you who follow the new Star Trek incarnation, Enterprise, but haven't seen the latest episode, might want to go away now, because there will be spoilers.

OK, so, Archer and the crew are looking for information about the Xindi, plus a way to synthesize the magic beans that will keep the space-time knotholes from screwing up the ship. They "accidentally" rescue a luscious slave girl, who turns out to be a Xindi spy. She has some sort of juju which turns her into an organic medical scanner---she can read people's insides and store the information.

This is handy to have. The Xindi want it because they're building a bioweapon that will wipe out humanity without having to go through the trouble of blowing up Earth. It's tricky to build a planet-busting weapon without busting the planet you're building it on.

She gets her info, and tries to return to the Xindi ship, but Archer is on to her, and has her thrown into the brig. So the Xindi board the Enterprise to get her back.

The Enterprise crew then put on The. Lamest. defense action since Dr. Smith was last in charge of the Jupiter II. You'd think that an airlock would be the easiest thing in the universe to defend. It's small, the enemy has to come through this tight space, and if you can break the seal, they all die. But the crew cannot manage this simple task. Three whole people gather to defend the first airlock, fire off a few rounds of comical, squeak-toy sound effects, then retreat.

The Xindi get to their spy in the brig. Archer gave instructions to the guards of the nature, "They will not get to her." To me, this means that if the Xindi do get in, the spy dies first. But no. The supposed defenders are nowhere to be seen when the Xindi come busting in.

Forget quagmire; our mission is an instant failure. Earth is doomed.

Fortunately for our heroes, however, they are up against an enemy even stupider than they are. The Xindi are running all over the ship at will, felling crew right and left, and it never occurs to them that they could just grab a couple of humans and they'd have their info. Hell, they didn't have to go through all this cloak and dagger crap, they could have just arranged to kidnap some humans at the last planet.

But I guess you couldn't really expect sense from a race that would toast Florida then retire to tinker with their weapon (so to speak) for another decade or so, secure in the knowledge that they sure showed those Earthmen.

There's a slight suggestion that she has sabotaged the Xindi's plans by giving them false info, but that's not at all clear.

As the Flea says, this starts out as a red-blooded, bare-chested, he-man episode of the original stripe. Kirk, though, would have done something boldly stupid, not cautiously stupid. Perhaps they (the writers) are still trying to recover from their "protocol"-obsessed Voyager days. They're lucky Field Marshall von Ashcroft doesn't have them taken out back and shot. I would have.

Flea also says, The Flea is still waiting for Starfleet-issue red-shirt uniforms. Last night one of those Marines they took along bought the farm, and I said, "Hey, where's his red shirt?" You have to watch for the silvery-black Marine uniforms.