Enterprise: Bullshit.

Brikar

The Dude
Jan 1, 1970
3,661
3
0
Massachusetts
#1
1x01/02 "Broken Bow" - Captain Jonathan Archer of the Enterprise NX-01 undertakes his first mission, to return a wounded Klingon carrying vital intelligence back to his people. Archer paces some more so we know how serious he is. As a pilot episode, this one's pretty decent. It has trouble, of course - firstly being that the cast is almost uniformly awful. It also suffers from some not very prequel-like aspects, and some ideas that are just plain stupid, such as the decon chamber rub-down scene. The flashbacks to Archer's childhood are clumsy and not particularly compelling or useful in any fashion. Still, it has a couple of well-made action sequences and some cool special effects. The thing is that for all its flaws, it does show a lot of promise. But we all know how that turned out, right?
 
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Bean

The Awesome One
Jan 1, 1970
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Canada eh!
cheese.com
#3
I'd like to make one request. For every episode you review, I would like you to include the phrase "Archer paces some more so we know how serious he is."

I promise, you won't find a single episode for which that phrase doesn't apply.
 

Brikar

The Dude
Jan 1, 1970
3,661
3
0
Massachusetts
#6
1x03 "Fight or Flight" - The Enterprise finds a ship whose crew has been slaughtered and is now being drained of their bodily fluids, while Hoshi struggles to decide whether to stay aboard. Archer gets testy during dinner so we know how serious he is. There are a lot of good ideas floating around in this one: that the Enterprise was rushed into service and therefore has some technical issues, protocols about boarding other ships uninvited, the amount of work that goes into trying to communicate with a new species for the first time, that the Enterprise is not a particularly powerful ship... If it weren't for the mind-numbingly aggravating scenes of Hoshi having a crisis of confidence, this is a pretty solid episode. The climactic scene where she must rely on her own talents instead of the universal translator is fine on paper, but in execution takes forever. If I had been the alien on the viewscreen, I would have given up the Enterprise to its fate long before this guy did. I did really like the mess hall scene between Trip and Phlox, however.
 

Brikar

The Dude
Jan 1, 1970
3,661
3
0
Massachusetts
#7
1x04 "Strange New World" - Archer disregards basic and reasonable security precautions to send a survey team down to an unknown planet, where the team is infected by an alien spore which causes them to hallucinate and become paranoid. Archer pouts to show us how serious he is. This episode is nearly ruined by Archer's absurd behavior. He gleefully belittles T'Pol's suggestion that they study the planet further before sending down a team, and then doesn't show the slightest bit of remorse when that decision nearly kills his entire team. What this episode does have is the earliest indications that Connor Trinneer is by far the best actor in this whole bunch. But the all the problems with the script could have been avoided by making Archer less of an asshole, and making the alien pollen more insidious. He talks a lot about Starfleet training and being prepared, but he stumbles like an arrogant ass into this situation that his training should have taught him how to avoid.

1x05 "Unexpected" - Trip visits an alien ship to help them repair their warp drive and comes back pregnant. Archer orders him to take a nap so we know how serious he is. .......Two words: Wrist nipples. Three more words: Fuck. This. Shit. This is just a completely dumb episode from start to finish. It's far too early in this series for them to be doing a comedy episode, and a terrible one at that. The only reason any of the gags in this episode works is, again, Connor Trinneer. His delivery is occasionally chuckle-worthy, but even his fine performance can't save this bad script. An encounter with the Klingons is wasted, and hey, thanks for introducing the holodeck two hundred years early, guys!
 

Brikar

The Dude
Jan 1, 1970
3,661
3
0
Massachusetts
#8
1x06 "Terra Nova" - The Enterprise is assigned to investigate Earth's lost Terra Nova colony. Reed eats cave bugs to show us how serious he is. Meh. Not bad; one or two cool action sequences. Archer doesn't quite act like a total dick in this one, and it does have a bit more of a 'prequel' feel to it, investigating a lost colony and so on. But there's nothing particularly great about it, either. Just a very middle-of-the-road action-adventure episode.

1x07 "The Andorian Incident" - Archer decides to barge in on a Vulcan monastery, only to discover that the monks are being held hostage by an Andorian military unit. Shran beats the shit out of Archer to show us how serious he is. Seriously, I don't know what the writers of this show were thinking when they tried to hide the fact that Archer is a complete asshole behind the tissue-thin justification of "we didn't come out here to bla bla bla." More like, "we didn't come out here to be nice to people." Seriously, who the fuck thinks it's okay to just bust in on a monastery like this? The only thing that saves this episode is Jeffrey Combs' performance as Shran. His forceful temper is a lot of fun.

1x08 "Breaking the Ice" - The Enterprise crew investigates a comet, while T'Pol deals with her hesitance to marry Koss. Archer answers questions from an elementary school to show us how serious he is. God, this episode is just so freaking boring. It takes forever for anything even remotely interesting to happen, and even then it's just a brief scene in which T'Pol asks Tucker for advice about marrying Koss. It's a nice scene between the two, hinting at their future romance in seasons three and four (though I doubt this was done on purpose).

1x09 "Civilization" - Archer disregards protocol once again to visit a pre-warp civilization only to discover that alien technology is making some of the locals sick. Archer belittles T'Pol to show us how serious he is. There are some decent action sequences, and the difficulties with the universal translator are a nice idea. Lip service is paid to the idea that we shouldn't be making contact with less advanced races, but then it's dropped in favor of the action-adventure plot and never brought up again.

1x10 "Fortunate Son" - The Enterprise is ordered to assist a human freighter under attack from Nausicaan pirates, but the freighter crew is suspicious of Starfleet officers. Mayweather tries to act to show us how serious he is. A lot of potential in this episode; the Boomers are a pretty good idea, as are bringing back the Nausicaans... problem is, the Nausicaans aren't characterized like they were in previous shows at all. The way they're written and portrayed here, they could be anyone, and that wastes their appearance entirely. To make matters worse, this episode focuses on Mayweather, played by Anthony Montgomery who is a just plain godawful actor. His big emotional speech at the end is just plain painful.

1x11 "Cold Front" - While the Enterprise investigates a stellar nursery, Silik infiltrates the ship and Crewman Daniels reveals to Archer that he's from the future. Archer paces to show us how serious he is. This episode is fun, a cool installment before the Temporal Cold War becomes total nonsense and is eventually abandoned entirely. The twist that Silik actually saves the ship is pretty cool, one that I wouldn't have expected from these writers, who seem to lack subtlety in every way possible.

1x12 "Silent Enemy" - The Enterprise is stalked and then attacked by mysterious aliens in a powerful vessel. Archer tucks tail and runs home to show us how serious he is. This one's pretty decent, too. It has some nice special effects, good storyline, and an unusually energetic musical score. The b-plot involving Hoshi trying to figure out Reed's favorite food is kind of stupid, but whatever, it's far less annoying than it could have been.
 

Arik

Administrator
Staff member
Jan 1, 2010
2,307
1
38
#9
Terra Nova actually has my favorite "Archer" moment. He storms off the bridge (to show us how serious he is), and he says something to the effect of "If we can't make first contact with a bunch of humans, we have no right being out here".

He's right, of course. Which is also rare for the series.
 

Brikar

The Dude
Jan 1, 1970
3,661
3
0
Massachusetts
#15
1x13 "Dear Doctor" - The Enterprise finds two alien astronauts in space who inform the crew that they're suffering from a deadly plague. But Doctor Phlox discovers that it's not a plague - their species is actually going extinct, and creating a cure could alter the natural evolution of another species. Archer invents the prime directive to show us how serious he is. The concept of this episode is actually rather fascinating, one of the better ideas this show will ever put forth. But the execution of it is rather ham-fisted, as one might suspect. Archer's speech to Phlox about it is awkwardly written, and Scott Bakula's delivery is even worse. Still, it's hard to say that I dislike the episode, even if it succeeds mostly just on the strength of its premise.

1x14 "Sleeping Dogs" - Reed, T'Pol and Hoshi board a Klingon ship that is sinking into the atmosphere of a gas giant and discovers the crew have been poisoned. Archer gets grumpy with a Klingon to show us how serious he is. This episode is boring as hell. I hated it when it was first on TV, and I hated it now. It's not one of those so-absurd-that-it's-terrible bad episodes, it's just plain freaking boring.

1x15 "Shadows of P'Jem" - The Vulcan High Command orders T'Pol off the Enterprise as punishment for the Andorian destruction of the monastery at P'Jem. But before that can happen, Archer and T'Pol are kidnapped by Coridan terrorists. Archer puts his face in T'Pol's tits to show us how serious he is. Not as good as "The Andorian Incident," but still some fun to be had. The scenes of Archer and T'Pol struggling to get untied are painful, but Shran is still a lot of fun and there's a pretty cool phaser fight at the end. It's cool that the show is willing to acknowledge the consequences of previous episodes.

1x16 "Shuttlepod One" - Thinking the Enterprise destroyed when they see some debris, Trip and Reed face the possibility of suffocating slowly in a small shuttlepod. Reed obsesses over T'Pol's "bum" to show us how serious he is. This is another episode that could have been good. There's some decent acting here, especially from Connor Trinner (surprise, surprise) but the script is predictable and basic. The performances, essentially, elevate a mediocre script.

1x17 "Fusion" - The crew helps repair the ship of a group of Vulcans who claim to have embraced their emotions, which leads to a crisis of faith for T'Pol. Trip asks a fat Vulcan about sex to show us how serious he is. This episode sucks ass. Move on.

1x18 "Rogue Planet" - The Enterprise discovers a planet in open space that is not part of a solar system, and encounters alien hunters who threaten the locals. Archer rants about a young woman in a nightgown to show us how serious he is. This episode probably wouldn't be so bad if it didn't look so fucking cheap. It's painfully obvious that this was shot on a soundstage instead of really out in the woods, and the costumes and gear of the alien hunters don't help, either.

1x19 "Acquisition" - The Enterprise is commandeered by Ferengi who want to loot the ship of valuables and women. Trip doesn't bother to put pants on for half the episode to show us how serious he is. Apparently, the justification for this episode is that since the humans never hear the word "ferengi," it's not a problem that the Federation won't make 'official' contact with them for another 200 years. Fuck you. There's no way in the blue holy hell of Andoria that Archer, who disregards every protocol of reason and politeness to meet every alien species he can, would let the people who took over his ship get away without finding out who they are. That said, there is actually some fun here. Jeffrey Combs is great playing a shy Ferengi, and Ethan Phillips (Neelix) also gets to ham it up as a villain.

1x20 "Oasis" - The Enterprise discovers a crashed ship on an alien world, and are shocked to find that the survivors aren't who they claim to be. Rick Berman and Brannon Braga give Trip an expertise in holographic technology just to show us how seriously they want to fuck this show up. Seriously, man. Holograms. I don't even know where to start with how fucking wrong this concept is for this show. I thought you assholes were trying to make a prequel? Pre meaning 'before'. So why are we having ships full of holograms? Guh.
 

Bean

The Awesome One
Jan 1, 1970
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cheese.com
#16
I actually rather enjoyed Dear Doctor. Billingsley is actually a fantastic actor as far as this series goes. He's on par with Trineer at his worst. The problem with the character is that the writers didn't give him enough (pardon the use of the word) "serious" material. They tried to make him almost comic relief, and an advisor at the same time.

It's as if the writers said "Let's make him a mix of Neelix and Deanna Troi, but for fun, let's only use the characteristics of those characters that failed miserably."

In Dear Doctor he was given his chance to shine, and the material he got was actually on the right path. Like your comments on Shuttlepod One, the performance in this case elevated the material.

I think they should have, like Voyager (ironic thing to say no?) given the Doctor on Enterprise more of the spotlight. Him and Trineer were the only two actors on that show that really deserved good material.
 

Cymro

Religious Fanatic
Nov 30, 1999
5,028
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Shitsville, CF63
#19
Yeah he always got on my nerves, though I wasn't sure if it was just cause Archer was written so badly. Mulgrew was never great at emotional stuff but at least she could pull off being captainy.
 

Bean

The Awesome One
Jan 1, 1970
5,243
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0
39
Canada eh!
cheese.com
#20
I dunno what happened with Bakula. He was ok in Quantum Leap, and I've watched a few episodes of "Men of a certain age" and he's alright in that.

It's like the combination of a mediocre actor, and terrible writing came together to form one giant, massive SUPER SUCK!

Although he's still not the worst on the show. Anthony Montgomery has got to be, hands down, the worst actor to have ever been cast as a regular on any Trek series EVER! It's not at