The Borg have arrived…wait…what?!   Originally broadcast on May 7,2003 this is Regeneration.

The Episode:

Captain’s Starlog date March 1, 2153

Borg drones are discovered in the arctic in a ship that had crashed nearly a hundred years in the past.  Before they can be taken to Starfleet for examination, the Borg regenerate, assimilate the researchers and leave Earth in an attempt to contact the rest of the Borg Collective.  Enterprise is called upon to track down these dangerous aliens only to come across a freighter that has been attacked by them.   Taking the Tarkallean survivors aboard they soon discover that they have been infected with some strange technology that is altering them.

Archer soon recalls stories that Zephram Cochrane told where he discussed aliens and people from the future but no one ever believed him.  It is soon apparent that these could be those very same beings.  Soon Phlox is infected when one of the survivors injects him with nanoprobes and the assimilated Tarkalleans begin working through the ship to try and take over. 

After being forced to jettison the infected Tarkalleans into space, Phlox finds himself facing full assimilation and forces himself into the imaging chamber to undergo a horribly painful solution to his dilemma.   Soon Enterprise overtakes the Borg transport and is able to destroy it but not before it is able to send out a subspace message to someone in the Delta Quadrant.   T’Pol surmises that whoever receives that signal will be coming back to see what has happened to these aliens. 

Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:

I have been waiting to get to this episode because I have a massive theory as to how Enterprise, and subsequently Discovery could exist in the established timeline in Star Trek with the clearly advanced technology over that of the Original Series….and the theory involves significant timeline alteration that is essentially Picard and the Enterprise D’s fault.

So, due to the events of Star Trek First Contact, the Borg went back in time and directly interacted with Earths past, specifically the events of the First Contact between humans and Vulcans. During this event Enterprise destroys the Borg vessel causing some of it to plummet to Earth resulting in the parts found in this episode to be found in the Arctic.  This implies that Picard and his team completely neglected to clean up the mess that they essentially caused only to pollute the timeline by leaving future technology in the extreme past.  

Now, how this effects the future’s past.  While it is claimed that no one believed Cochrane’s story about the future humans and the Borg, Cochrane never encountered the Borg themselves.  Someone else did and she is never mentioned, the person?  Lily Sloane.  Remember Lily?  For some reason she is never mentioned in the same breath as Cochrane despite the fact that she was as instrumental in the events of First Contact as the creator of Warp Drive is.  You even get the sense that she helped in the construction of this engine but, after the Borg invasion, she simply vanishes.  What if, while no one believed Cochrane, Lily kept quite and used her own future knowledge to slightly alter the future?  In fact, she could have removed technology from the Arctic crash well before it was rediscovered in the future and used this technology to help spearhead what would later become Starfleet.  This influence would explain some of the interesting advancements and looks to Enterprise and Discovery in the future while also making these series a slightly alternate timeline.  In the original timeline Enterprise NX-01 may not have actually existed, or it did but in a significantly different way which is why Archer and his crew are never mentioned in the Original series, STNG, DS9 or even Voyager.  (the real reason is, of course, that they hadn’t been created yet but this solves their sudden existence in the timeline.)  In fact, this even explains the events of the episode The Neutral Zone where both the Federation and the Romulan Empire are are investigating missing colonies…that signal the future Borg sent…yeah it made it and certainly got the Delta Quadrant Borg interested. 

Now looking at this episode as a direct sequel to Star Trek First Contact and the introduction to the altered timeline, this is a tremendous episode.  Not only is it action packed and a solid Borg story, it is very careful to never identify this species in any way in an attempt to keep the timeline intact.  Now, what is frustrating is that you would think someone on the NX-01 would have kept logs and seeing how the finale to this series plays out (oh boy is that a doosey) we know that the crew of the Enterprise D know about Archer’s crew.  So, how is it that no one recognized the Borg when they showed up in STNG, when they were clearly a species that had been encountered before?  Why?  Well, we have to assume that Enterprise simply did not exist before the events of First Contact bringing us back to the above theory.  In fact, this also explains how the Ferengi exist but were never mentioned until Enterprise D encountered them, none of these adventures had even happened.  Heck, this might even be the catalyst to the Temporal Wars….an attempt to correct the mistake made when Picard never cleaned up his mess after the battle above the Earth with the Borg. Sadly, none of this is ever explored but, in a way, it makes this series a little more palatable for me.  

Gleanings and Cool Bits:

  • We get to see the Tarkalleans for the first time.
  • Archer jettisons two Tarkallean Borg into space leaving them to be found by accident at some point.  These two bodies are never referred to again and could pollute the timeline even further. 
  • Phlox finds a way to counteract the Borg nanoprobes yet this tech is never mentioned again.
  • We witness a rare use of the transporter in this one.

Thanks for reading the Retro TV Review,  I look forward to discussing the rest of the series with you, one episode at a time every Monday, Wednesday and Friday!  Next Review: First Flight

more reviews I have a weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Thursday and for more retro TV goodness check out the rest of the Retro TV Reviews here.

As always, please feel free to comment below and share your experiences with these episodes as well. If you just happened by, tell me what you think! Don’t Forget To Follow me if you like the blog!

Late To The Game 8/13/2021

A: ‘T’Pol, I assume you will be making a full report to Starfleet letting them know that we have a potential threat 200 years from now?’ T: ‘Sure….I’ll get right on that’

Special Thanks to Memory Alpha as they are one of the best sources for details on Star Trek information available.  Although I have a pretty deep knowledge on the subject, they have proven invaluable as a regular resource.

Star Trek and all related marks, logos and characters are solely owned by CBS Studios Inc. This fan production is not endorsed by, sponsored by, nor affiliated with CBS, Paramount Pictures, or any other Star Trek franchise, and is a non-commercial fan-made production intended for recreational use.  No commercial exhibition or distribution is permitted. No alleged independent rights will be asserted against CBS or Paramount Pictures.”

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