Oh it’s more war….maybe. Originally broadcast on January 28, 2005 this is Babel One.
Captain’s Starlog Date November 12, 2154
Shran’s ship is attacked by Tellarites but he is unable to contact his government and is forced to abandon ship. Meanwhile Enterprise is escorting a Tellarite Ambassador to negotiate peace between the two species. After making the delegates comfortable Enterprise gets a distress call from an Andorian vessel and soon finds the escape pods from a destroyed ship. Archer is surprised to find Shran is among the survivors and Shran blames the Tellarites who were supposed to be interested in peace. After several misunderstandings and attacks on Enterprise by ships that appear to be Andorians, it is discovered that it is another alien species who are trying to start a war by using a ship that can project different configurations to confuse their enemies. Reed and Tucker find themselves trapped on the ship after it attacks Enterprise and escapes and, After determining that it must be the Romulan’s involved in these attacks, Enterprise and their feuding passengers must find a way to make peace while looking for the ship that attacked them. The thing is, no one realizes that the ship is in fact a drone that is controlled from the Romulan homeworld itself and now it has prisoners.
To Be continued.
Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:
Once again we are at the start of a three part episode so it’s kinda hard to really judge if it’s any really good on it’s own or not just based on the story. That being said, this has Jeffery Combs in it so….if you have been reading my blog you know that I simply adore that man. I mean, even a bad episode is good with Combs in it and the moment he appeared, well, I was sold. Combs absolutely nails it in this episode. We get a chance to see him lament the loss of his ship and crew, seeing him at his lowest point which really just makes his character all that much more relatable. Shran is not just a hard fought Andorian commander who is determined to defend his people, he is also a caring Captain and leader who honestly is a really good guy.
Ok, now that my adoration for Combs is out of the way, I really LOVE how we finally get a chance to really meet the Tellarites. I always found it interesting that the Tellarites, who would end up being one of the founding members of the Federation, have somehow been left out of pretty much every series after the Original yet should have been represented in some way. Sure we see them in the background at times but never serving aboard a vessel in any real sense. Imagine if the First Officer on STNG had been a grumpy Tellerite instead of a human, or the security chief on DS9 was one? The dynamic of this species would have added a tremendous opportunity for conflict and stories in those series. I really hope that we eventually get a proper Tellerite crew member on a series. Strange New Worlds maybe? That would be really rad.
The thing that makes this episode work so well is that it establishes the Romulans as a significant and insidious threat. While the Federation wont get to actually see the Romulans in person until much later I love how they are already being positioned as a seditious group who are trying to manipulate the universe for their own gains. This lines up perfectly with the Romulans we come to know and…well…not like at all.
Overall, good start to a new three part story. Again, I get the feeling that this would have been a season long story line had the series been able to keep going. It feels like a lot of content to cram into a few episodes but still, it’s actually really solid storytelling.
Gleanings and Cool Bits:
- T’Pol gets her divorce. So that’s a thing.
- You may recognize the Romulan commander as actor Brian Thompson. He is best known for his role as the Alien Assassin in the X-Files as well as numerous other roles.
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: United
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Late To The Game 11/10/2021
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.
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