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Star Trek Ent - Season 1 - Episode 01

Star Trek Ent - 1x01 - Broken Bow, Part I

Originally Aired: 2001-9-26

Synopsis:
The Enterprise crew sets on a maiden voyage with a mission to return a wounded Klingon to his people. [DVD]

My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 4.78

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Problems
- Four days to reach the Klingon homeworld from Earth on a ship as slow as Enterprise puts the Klingon homeworld way too close to Earth.

Factoids
- Scott Bakula, who plays Captain Archer, is formerly of Quantum Leap. He has been quoted as being reluctant at first to play the lead in this show, but eventually the idea of playing the first captain of any Earth starship named Enterprise appealed to him after all.

Remarkable Scenes
- The human farmer shooting a Klingon.
- Archer and Trip admiring Enterprise.
- Trip bumping the shuttlepod into Enterprise, scratching the paint.
- Archer making a scene regarding the injured Klingon.
- Archer to T'Pol: "Volatile? You have no idea how much I'm restraining myself from knocking you on your ass."
- Reed and Travis expressing fear of the transporter.
- Cochrane: "Imagine it, thousands of inhabited planets at our fingertips. And we'll be able to explore those strange new worlds and seek out new life and new civilizations. This engine will let us go boldly where no man has gone before."
- Phlox' absurd smile.
- The "sweet spot" scene.
- Hoshi trying to communicate with the Klingon.
- Trip's various reactions to the people on Rigel X.

My Review
Preliminary remark, I'm going to talk about the premise in part I and the plot of the pilot in part II. So here goes nothing. "Enterprise" - Perhaps the most controversial Star Trek series yet. There are many things about this show that are... different. First of all it's a prequel, taking place before TOS. It manages to present a convincing setting without looking too cheesy like the low budget TOS show did nor too much like TNG, DS9, or Voyager. The name of the series deviates as well, there's no "Star Trek" in it, which is annoying. I'm also slightly annoyed that they named it something so generic as "Enterprise." This creates a lot of confusion with TOS, and TNG. TOS was "the old" Enterprise. TNG was "the new" Enterprise. Is "Enterprise" supposed to be "the new old" Enterprise? The opening theme is a deviation too, no longer being a classical composition accompanied by special effects. Instead, it depicts various NASA accomplishments along with some selected Star Trek history. A lot of people complained about the new opening theme, but to be completely honest, I like it. Although I would have preferred the traditional style more. The opening themes of DS9 and Voyager were much better. (Voyager's was probably the better of the two, but I just liked DS9's more...) Anyway, enough of that. Broken Bow, Part I presents us with an interesting glimpse of the 22nd century. A lot of people complained about the behavior of the Vulcans, but I loved it. No, really! Remember back in Star Trek VIII: First Contact in the short scene in which we glimpse Cochrane confusing his new Vulcan friends with his music and other customs? I knew right from that moment that the road to friendship between humans and Vulcans would be shaky. I was hoping for this kind of conflict. In the future, a luddite-like McCoy still pokes at Spock. And in the distant future, people still make fun of Vulcans in a joking manner. Doesn't it at least stand to reason that at the developmental stage of the human-Vulcan relationship that the various insults might have been real and not sarcastic? I think so anyway. The only thing that really bothered me about this pilot episode was the introduction of two new alien species. You know, as a prequel, Enterprise really shouldn't introduce new alien species. Especially one as a main character! Don't get me wrong, I like Phlox. But if you think about it, is there any reason Phlox can't be of a species we already know about, like the Bolians? I would have loved Phlox as a Bolian! The potential for comedy would have been even higher! While the Suliban are convincing villains, as a prequel, I'm looking forward to Klingon first contact and the Earth Romulan wars as being the center of attention. Not new aliens. Anyway, considering all the initial bad press the show got from various sources, I think for the most part it turned out fairly well. It's not without its flaws though. Only time will tell if they can be ironed out.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From warp factor 10.1 on 2012-08-09 at 12:21pm:
    The reason I was looking forward to a prequel series was that the wonder and excitement of first contact would be so great. It was a big disappointment therefore when species started coming thick and fast and aliens we had never seen before were almost commonplace. All we needed was a subset of the many species found in TOS. There was still plenty of opportunity to discover how we came across them etc. This was done with the Andorians but that was all.

    Although two of my favourite episodes of all are to do with time I usually don't like them and basing a story arc on some incomprehensible time story was again disappointing for me.

    There was some good stuff in this series but for me it was all to do with finding out more about known alien species.
  • From TK8 on 2012-11-07 at 12:33pm:
    As a kid who was a bit of an amateur astronomer and TOS through to the present form of Star Trek fan, forgive a pet peeve here. Rigel was named by Arabic astronomers hundreds of years ago. Archer says, it's called Rigel as if was an alien moniker. How's that for a nerdy niggle? This is the first comment I've posted on the internet since 1996.
  • From OmicronThetaDeltaPhi on 2015-02-25 at 7:47am:
    @TK8 Actually, the "Rigel" thing wasn't an error, but a correction of a blunder made in TOS. The Original Series made several references to a star system named "Rigel" which is fairly close to earth.

    For years fans have assumed that this was supposed to be the real (human named) star Rigel, which is problematic because the real Rigel is over 800 light years away.

    So the 'Enterprise' writers cleverly solved this decades-old problem, by stating that Star Trek's 'Rigel' is an alien name for a nearby star. A star that has nothing to do with the human-named 'Rigel', except for the coincidence of the two names sounding alike.

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