The Enterprise Docks at
Ent 008
airdate 11-07-01

Finally, a teaser that lasted longer than Tasha Yar.

For the past few weeks the scene right before the opening credits has been lasting about fifteen seconds. Deep Space Nine used to let their trailer run as long as 7 minutes on certain episodes, while Voyager would roll sequences so short it seemed like the writers were having trouble coming up with ideas (which they were). It's a great sign that Enterprise won't be following in the steps of Voyager, not the least because the Delta Quadrant is dumb.

As for timing, this was the first episode where the action didn't fly by at warp 9. Since the pilot we haven't had any serious character building moments. Sure, Hoshi had to overcome her fears of failure, and T'Pol has had to bite her voluptuous Vulcan lip more than once, but there hasn't been much exploration of why the characters are acting the way they do.

On the pilot for The Next Generation, Data's existence in the Star Trek universe was crystallized when he told Riker that as a superior android he "…would give it all up, to be human." On Enterprise we didn't even learn the name of Dr. Phlox's people until episode 6, two weeks ago. By taking their time the producers are building a lot more room into their storytelling, and it's a good thing that we don't learn everything on the first night. But if we went much longer without getting a tighter grip on who these star trekkers are Enterprise would have very quickly looked like a Mighty Morphin Power Rangers spin-off.

This story also had a much more familiar structure to returning Trekkers and Trekkies. Few of the Enterprise episodes have had an "A" story line and a "B" story line. Episodes of the original Star Trek for the most part didn't have B story lines. And it's clear Trek producers of today are trying to replicate that breed of show. But the "B" story line is so common to modern television it would be hard to keep it out of every episode.

For this week's "A" story line, Commander T'Pol has been sending a series of secret messages to a Vulcan ship, which makes Captain Archer's eyebrow raise when a Vulcan ship babysits the Enterprise's missions. Over in the "B" story line Enterprise discovers the largest known comet, and sends a team down to investigate.

You're secretly betraying us? Okay. Can you do that lip-biting thing again?
The commercial for this week's episode would have viewers believe that whole comet thing was the "A" story line, since it got more commercial air time. Granted, its scenes are more interesting than T'Pol arguing with Commander Trip.

To make things more accurate the commercial should have revolved around the overly anal Vulcan captain. Now, Spock wasn't exactly Mr. Fun. Sure he knew a lot of stuff, and he could read the minds of giant rock-like aliens - but if you really got to know him, he's a pretty stale guy. With all that said, Spock was never rude. Never overly rude, at least. He had moments of correction, telling panicky cadets to sit down, and quiet themselves, but he never went around insulting people.

But the Vulcans of this time period sure seem to be very bitter towards humans. It's one thing for them not to be interested in the same sorts of things that fascinate humans, but we have yet to meet a Vulcan who wasn't a jerk. Enterprise has been depicting the Vulcans as the 70-year old geometry teacher that everyone avoids in high school. Mean, arrogant, and stuffy. Spock would not be proud.

The tensions are mounting. By taking their sweet time to introduce certain key elements weeks after the pilot, Enterprise is suggesting long character arc throughout the run of the show. Perhaps over that time the Vulcans will find their space in the galaxy. Or Spock will have to travel through time and teach them the true meaning of logic, and of becoming beloved icons so you can make convention appearances for years after the show gets cancelled.

Kevin Miller

Discuss this and more in the Fanboy forums.

Guidelines fot Submitting Guest Columns to

You are invited to submit a " Guest Column: for possible publishing on this site. The column must be submitted to only. Please specifically state in your submission that you have only submitted it to us. is under no obligation to use any unsolicited columns from its readers, but if the article is not used within 1 month, it's fair game to submit it elsewhere. The column should be about one topic somewhere between 500 and 1,000 words in length. Other than the potential admiration of loyal fans, there is no pay, compensation, or stipend to the author if publishes the column.

Submit your guest editorial in straight e-mail text form (not as an attachment; we never open attachments) to

Click Here!

Copyrights and trademarks for existing entertainment (film, TV, comics, wrestling) properties are held by their respective owners and are used with permission or for promotional purposes of said properties. All other content ™ and © 2001 by FanboyPlanet. If you want to quote us, let us know. We're media whores.
Movies Comics Wrestling OnTV Guest Forums About Us Mystery Sites