Wacky Reviews: Star Trek

whisky

Boobie inspector
I bought a 1/24th a team van from amazon the other day, got a military police car coming next week, when I'm bored working from home the van is going to slide along the table next to my laptop, then the car is going to flip over in slow motion.
 

CaptainWacky

I want to smell dark matter
The Communicator - Archer, Reed and Hoshi return from an away mission on a pre warp planet and Reed discovers he left his communicator behind. Archer and Reed go back down (in disguise) and Reed lets Archer knows he's ready to be punished (Archer is forgiving.) They track it down in a bar but some soldier type people are watching them. There's a brief fight before Archer and Reed are easily captured (Kirk would have put up more of a fight.) They're locked up as suspected enemey spies and the aliens take their phase pistols and scanners. They're questioned by a senior army type guy. They won't give anything away about their technology and, yes, Archer gets beaten up as usual. Then his alien makeup falls off and the general is really confused (red blood is also unusual.) Trip and Travis work on getting the cloaking device on the Suliban pod that's onboard the Enterprise (since the season two opener? Since 'Broken Bow'? I'm not sure. Would't it have come in handy in some other episodes?) to mount a rescue mission. Trip's arm gets cloaked. Phlox gives him a glove to wear.

The alien army guys do some shooting with the phase pistols. They medically examine Archer and Reed and conclude that they're space aliens from space. Archer gets beaten up again (yawn) and claims he's just from a geneticallyengineered soldier from an enemy nation (the planet is on the brink of war) ratherthan being a spaceman. Err, this seems just as dangerous telling them he's an alien. Like it could start a war. Hoshi intercepts a message stating that Archer and Reed are to be hung. Travis suggests Trip use his invisible arm to grope women (he doesn't really, it was a joke.) Reed lets Archer know he's willing to die for the mission. This seems to be an obsession for Reed. Archer wonders if they should invite the general to the Enterprise to explain everything but concludes that dying is the better option. The rescue mission runs into a problem when the cloak cuts out. Alien planes attack them. The cloaked Suliban pod arrives just in time and there's a phaser fight. The aliens see the Enterprise crew come out of the cloaked pod but hey who cares at this point. Archer gets the captured phasers and scanners back before they leave. Back on the Enterprise Archer and T'Pol talk about how the army guys now believe that their enemey have genetically engineered super soldiers and invisible aircraft. Then the episode just ends without us finding out if the planet went to war or anything. Thanks, Enterprise.

Remember the fun TOS episode 'A Piece of the Action'? That was much better than this was! It ended with Scotty or whoever saying they'd left their communicator on the planet and wondering what that would mean. This one answers that question and it turns out the answer is it would lead to a pretty boring situation with Archer being beat up for the seventeenth time. If this had been a TOS episode there would have been some life to it. Some flying karate kicks. There's really not much here. The episode does acknowledge that Archer fucked everything up and possibly caused a war but then it's over. We don't see the fallout. That's what the episode should have been about: the results of leaving the communicator around and Archer's lies. Instead it's just a run of the mill Enterprise episode. Trip's cloaked arm was good at least.

SCORE: 4/10


Singularity - The crew are all passed out except for Seven T'Pol. They're on a collision course with a blackhole. T'Pol tells the story and we get flashbacks to show how we got here: The Enterprise was headed towards an interesting blackhole and Archer asked Trip to repair his uncomfortable Captain's chair. Archer has been asked to write the foreword to a biography of his father. Hoshi and a chubby guy are filling in for Chef. Travis has a headache and Phox cant' diagnose it. Reed tells Archer he wants the Enterprise to have some kind of ship-wide alert during emergencies. He can't come up with a name and considers "condition red." Isn't "red alert" an actual real thing in the real world and shouldn't he just have thought of that right away? Trip suggests "Reed Alert" and that's not bad! Hoshi is upset Reed thinks her food is too salty. Archer struggles to write his foreword and starts to go crazy. Trip starts going crazy over the chair. Phlox goes crazy trying to diagnose Travis. I think it's clear by now that everyone's going crazy. Phlox sedates him to do further tests. Reed auditions alarmt noises for his new tactcal alert. Hoshi shouts "CARROTS!" at Chubby Guy.

Reed gets more and more paranoid as T'Pol tries to figure out what's going on. Trip completely takes the chair apart and tells Archer he's going to build him a throne. They get into an argument. Reed does a drill with his new alarm system (without telling anyone it's a drill.) Trip, Reed and Archer nearly come to blows. T'Pol tries to convince Archer that the crew are going mad but he's too obsessed with writing his foreword. Phlox is no help either as he's about to drill into Mayweather's head so T'Pol nerve pinches him. Everyone goes so crazy they pass out because that's what happens when you go too crazy. T'Pol wakes up Archer and runs him under a shower. She needs him to fly the ship through an asteeroid field (not sure where that came from to be honest) even though he's still a bit crazy (and wet.) He has to shoot an asteroid and luckily weapons are already charged thanks to Reed's new protocol. He gets the Enterprise through and the rest of the crew wake up, not insane. Archer reports that his chair is much better now and Trip says all he did was lower it by one centimetre.

It's very derivative of a number of TNG, DS9 (that one where Sisko was obsessed with a clock) and Voyager episodes. But in terms of recent Enterprise it's pretty good. There's some funny stuff. The crazy versions of the characters are a lot more entertaining than the regular versions. There's not much to it at all and it does drag a bit, but I found it fairly watchable. That's good for season 2 Enterprise!

SCORE: 6.5/10
 

CaptainWacky

I want to smell dark matter
Vanishing Point - Trip and Hoshi are on an away mission to some ruins when they're hit by a storm. The only choice is to beam them up to the Enterprise, something Hoshi is ver reluctant to do. She makes Trip go first and both beam up seems to go fine. Hoshi admits to Trip, Reed and Travis after that she doesn't feel right. They tell her about Cyrus Ramsey, an early transporter test subject who never materialised. Hoshi goes to Phlox to have him check her molecules. She also thinks her birthmark has moved. Phlox doesn't take her seriously. Hoshi sleeps in and wakes to find Trip and Travis have been taken hostage by the people on the planet, even though it was uninhabitated. She fails to translate the alien language and Archer tells her to go back to bed. I think it's clear by this point that this isn't reality. Hoshi has a shower and her hands to disappear. T'Pol tells her that some crewman translated the language and saved Trip and Travis, so Hoshi isn't needed anymore. She goes to ask Phlox what the fuck is going on. He tells her it's just the transporter freaking her out and she starts to feel better.

She talks to Trip (who is spinning around in a big wheel) about her recent problems and he basically says the same thing as Phlox, making this scene pointless. Then she phases through the gym equipment and her reflection disappears from the mirror. She finds that no one can see her, like he's Geordi and Ro or something. She watches as Phlox tells Archer that Hoshi's molecules really are coming apart. She also listens in on Trip revealing that there really was something wrong with the transporter and they just didn't notice before. Everyone thinks Hoshi is really dead now and not a cute ghost. Phlox scrapes up some goo which he believes is all that remains of Hoshi. Next she sees two aliens from the planet planting a bomb or something in the lower decks but can't tell anyone. She watches Archer trying to explain to her father that she's dead. Archer does a terrible job of it. Hoshi doesn't realise this isn't real because she's used to Archer doing a terrible job at things. She manages to send a SOS message to Archer using a blinking light but Archer is such a terrible Captain he does nothing about it (I know this is just a dream Archer but it shows that Hoshi must think Archer is a terrible Captain to dream him so incompetent.) Hoshi manages to stop the bombs going off by phasing through the like Kitty Pryde. Then she emerges on the transporter pad, alive and well. IT WAS ALL A DREAM. She was trapped in the pattern buffer for eight seconds and somehow had a forty minute dream. Trip doesn't know who Cyrus Ramsey is. Archer tells Hoshi this whole experience will help her get over her fear of transporters or something.

There are a number of Trek episodes similar to this: TNG's 'Remember Me' and 'Future Imperfect', Voyager's 'Projections'. Those episodes weren't spoiled by the fact that nothing in them really happened, so what's the difference with 'Vanishing Point'? First of all, I wouldn't say this one is bad, exactly. I think a lot of people hated it (from my limiated research) but I found it mostly watchable. Linda Park gives a very good performance, probably her best yet. The way her fears manifest themselves in her weird dream pretty much make sense. There's a few repetitive scenes, and by the time she's imagining the aliens with the bombs it's so obvious it's a dream that it's hard to care, but it held my attention all the way through. So why isn't it as good as some other "it was all a dream!" type episodes? Well, let's take 'Remember Me' as an exampole. In that episode, people start to disappear from the Enterprise and only Crusher notices. Throughout the course of the episode Crusher figures out what's going on. She realises, in a memorable momen, that there must be something wrong with the universe. And in the end she chooses to jump through the weird portal that's been appearing throughout the episode, taking the chance that it's her son Wesley trying to save her. Compare that with Hoshi here. Hoshi works out nothing! She has no moments of realisation. She does nothing to get herself out of the situation she's trapped in. She just has a weird dream and wakes up. If she'd just stayed in bed for the whole dream it would have made no difference, she still would have appeared on the transporter pad at the end. That's the difference. Yes we learn a few things about Hoshi's character here, I geuss, yes it's fairly enjoyable to watch, but it doesn't feel like a complete episode because the ending is just "AND THEN SHE WOKE UP." She doesn't achieve anything. It's like Berman and Braga have forgotten how stories work

SCORE: 6/10


Precious Cargo - The Enterprise meets some cargo pilots who need Trip's help repairing a stasis pod holding a young woman passenger. How did aliens get repairs done before Trip went to space? Trip quickly notices that the frozen chick is hot. Archer offers to just give the aliens a lift but they act a bit shifty and turn him down. The woman unexpectedly wakes up and Trip lets her out her pod, against the protests of the aliens...who then hit him with a pipe. There's some shooting with Reed and one of the aliens flies off in his ship with the woman and Trip onboard. Trip wakes up and the woman hits him with the pipe again even though he was clearly trying to help her before. The universal translator isn't working on her either, for extra annoyance. Trip gets his UT working and the woman explains she's a super famous royal diplomat who was abducted by the pilots. She's Leia, Trip's Han. Except shit. Trip wants to escape, she complains about everything in a badly acted way. She tells Trip her name but I can't be bothered looking up how to spell it so I'll just call her Shit Leia. They escape on the escape pod thing and it's a bumpy ride so she moans more.

There's more unfunny bickering. Archer puts on a little act for his prisoner, telling him the Vulcans have sent a badass inquisitor to deal with him. It is T'Pol (in different clothes!) pretending to be all scary. Archer plays good cop telling the alien he can get hi off if he helps them find his partner. This is far better than the Trip/Shit Leia stuff but still not as good as if it had been Janeway and Tuvok. Trip and the Princess eat food and she tells him she's not allowed to socialise with men. She seems to be softening to Trip just because...he's there? They crashland on a planet. They have to walk through a swamp and she doesn't like swamps. He line delivery is somehow getting worse. Trip takes his shirt off because we're on UPN. They continue to argue but sometimes look at each other in a sexy way. They nearly hit each other, fall into some water and kiss. It's not very convincing! The bad alien shows up. Trip punches him like some kind of old timey boxer and the alien goes "HA HA HA!" I'll admit, I laughed just because it was so dumb. The princess saves Trip, the Enterprise rescues them. Trip and the princess say goobye and she says when she's Queen she'll make it legal for him to shag her.

It has a reputation as being oe of the worst Trek episodes and that reputation is well earned! Okay, that one scene with Archer and T'Pol playing good cop/bad cop is okay (but there's many better such scenes in Trek) and I did like the "HA HA HA!" bit. Otherwise it's painfully bad! Padma Lakshmi is beautifl and I know she was more of a model than an actress at this time, but she is truely awful here, unable to even speak sentences convincingly. You might think that's because she's playing a royal who doesn't interact with people...but I just thinks it's because she can't act. Even Connor Trinneer, who I'm usually a fan of, is pretty bad here and not believable as a Han Solo type romantic lead at all. It's bad it's bad it's bad.

SCORE: 1/10
 
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