Last night I finished watching the entire run of Enterprise, which in itself is quite remarkable since I couldn’t do it with any of the other Star Trek series. You might recall that I tried to watch Voyager but couldn’t stay interested after the first seven or eight episodes of Season 1.
As I previously mentioned, I like the show’s premise, and I mostly enjoy the cast. The Xindi arc really tightened the narrative for Season 3, and there were a couple of real gems in Season 4, namely:
- The “In a Mirror, Darkly” two-parter was fun! For old-time TOS fans the fate of the U.S.S. Defiant in “The Tholian Web” is revealed here. But the way they changed the opening theme to one that features humanity’s warlike nature and the rise of the Terran Empire was particularly interesting.
- The Terra-Prime arc was very poignant. It showed a side of the Trek universe that was never really seen: humanity wasn’t as enlightened and noble as in later centuries, and you know what? That makes things more REAL. The radicals even made some valid points that are resonant of current politics: after the Xindi attack, how can you be sure there won’t be another hostile alien attack? Where were our Vulcan “friends” when the Xindi attacked? Terra Prime might be radicals and terrorists, but they are multidimensional radicals and terrorists that make them believable, rather than cardboard villains.
- And then we come to the Season/Series Finale, “These are the Voyages…”. Let me just say… WOW, I was extremely disappointed! Listen, jumping ahead to when the NX-01 is slated to be mothballed in favor of a new generation of Warp-7 vessels? Yes, that makes sense! Heading back to Earth for a major historical ceremony? Absolutely. I was looking forward to Archer delivering his supposedly historical speech at the ceremony (since every schoolchild in the Federation evidently had to memorize it), and witness the signing of the Federation Charter! That would’ve been a proper farewell to the crew and cast of the show, the culmination of their heroic efforts of the past ten years. Instead? The whole thing was played out as a holodeck simulation for Riker and Troi — and they ended it before the actual ceremony. Jerks!!! To top it off, Trip was killed off for no good reason other than jerk some tears. The whole thing just felt disrespectful to the cast of Enterprise, because the finale wasn’t even their story, and the most momentous event in the birth of the Federation is reduced to the equivalent of a history book entry.
Oh well. At least the last 30 seconds of the episode was excellent, where they spliced together the three Enterprises and Picard/Kirk/Archer’s voiceovers of the famous “Where No Man Has Gone Before” speech. Gave me goosebumps there.