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Star Trek Ent - Season 2 - Episode 23

Star Trek Ent - 2x23 - Regeneration

Originally Aired: 2003-5-7

Synopsis:
An arctic research team discovers debris from an alien vessel, buried in a glacier along with the bodies of two cybernetically enhanced humanoids. [DVD]

My Rating - 3

Fan Rating Average - 5.6

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Problems
- The transport the Borg assimilated is said to have left Earth at warp 3.9, yet reaches Enterprise in an impossibly short time at that speed.
- The Borg adapt to the phase pistols on Enterprise, but on the Borg ship, the phase pistols still worked for a while. Not a very efficient collective.

Factoids
- The wreckage found in Antarctica is left over from Star Trek VIII: First Contact.

Remarkable Scenes
- Phlox telling Reed about the Bynars.
- Archer telling T'Pol about Zefram Cochrane's story about the Borg.
- Archer decompressing the hatch the assimilated Tarkaleans were in.
- Archer: "Sounds to me like we've only postponed the invasion until... what? The 24th century?"

My Review
This episode at first would seem to heavily aggravate the Borg's apparent inconsistent portrayal on Star Trek. But I'm a little more forgiving. Consider Seven of Nine's past. By the time of TNG, there was a group of people who defied Starfleet by searching for the Borg, who were only rumored to exist at that time. This episode could in fact provide the necessary background information for where Seven of Nine's parents got their wild ideas. There are two questions to answer if we're to buy into this rationalization. Why did Picard and more importantly Data know nothing about them? It's at least possible that even after the events of this episode, Starfleet lacked any interest in these aliens. Cochrane's statements about the Borg were largely considered ridiculous both before and after this episode. It's likely that officially this episode was considered an isolated incident, and that a connection was never drawn by Starfleet. It was up to minority groups like Seven of Nine's parents, to draw these connections. The second question to answer is what happened to the Borg wreckage and the detailed medical scans of the bodies? Given that the Borg never showed up again until the 24th century, neither the the data nor the wreckage was of any use. I wouldn't be surprised if it never got any recognition outside the scientific minority that Seven of Nine's parents belonged to. Yes, this episode is annoying, to put it mildly. And it would have been nice if the writers payed better attention to continuity, by supporting these rationalizations in the episode. But like Ent: Acquisition, it's not a devastating blow to continuity. No, Enterprise does not exist in a new timeline. No, these types of episodes are not impossible to rationalize. Yes, this was a reasonably entertaining episode, but I do hope this trend stops before it really does become a problem.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Rob on 2008-05-01 at 7:24pm:
    About the possible conundrum's caused by this and other "past history" episodes: There is a theory I read re: quantum-particle mechanics related to possible time travel that goes something like this (assuming for a second you could actually time travel to the past at all) - that it would not be possible to alter history (in 'real time' from your persepective) even if you went back in time to change something (like killing your own grandfather before your parent's birth, for instance) because the effects cannot occur until after the moment when the traveler left for the past. Now whether you would become a condundrum (still existing even though your parents would disappear from history) or whether you'd just vanish at that instant is another argument all together.

    In other words, these Borg and all information pertaining to them could not exist in the past until after Picard and the Enterprise-E followed the Borg back in time and returned. Until that moment, nothing that occurred in this episode could have been recorded as having happened (during the time frame of Best of Both Worlds for example) however, once the Ent-E returned, a look through their historical database would suddenly reveal this information even though no one would have seen it before because it wasn't until this point that it 'actually' occurred. The effects of the Enterprise/Borg's influence in the past could not be noted until the point when the actors in the past returned to a point in time after they originally left for the past.

    It's headache inducing and esoteric and I still don't quite grasp how all of this would work practically in the 'real world' (math is my weak point) but the theory could explain away why no one would have known about this episode's details until far into the future (after ST: First Contact and the return of the Ent-E to a point after they left for the past).

    Hopefully this makes just enough sense that you can see my point!
  • From EvanT on 2011-06-24 at 3:55pm:
    You could assume that all the materials from the sphere and the computers from the outpost were used to augment that shuttle the Borg used (too convenient, granted, but plausible)

    However, what I consider far more interesting is how this episode changes the character of Q. There you have humanity in the 24th century, oblivious of a cybernetic threat that has just discovered the existence of Earth (or is about to), and Q comes along and conveniently sends the Enterprise-D to get a glimpse of the Borg. Q doesn't look as obnoxious as he did when "Q Who?" originally aired, does he (and Picard's suspicions about Q's intent get validated after all)

    I DID hate the thing where the nanoprobes were susceptible to O-radiation. If a 22nd century doctor could discover this, I'd imagine Dr. Crusher or the Doctor would have known about this as well (these WERE 24th century drones, after all).
  • From Mitchell on 2013-10-18 at 8:08pm:
    I love the score in this particular episode, the music is just brilliant.
  • From Roger on 2015-07-23 at 1:58pm:
    Yes, it was an entertaining episode, but as Kethinov observed it really messed up continuity.

    First off, it seems that Picard and the crew of the Enterprise-E did a really lousy job of cleaning up after the destruction of the Borg sphere in ST VIII. Pretty sloppy work, considering all the concern about preserving the time line in the movie.

    Next issue: so the debris from the sphere is able to make it through re-entry, crash in the arctic with some intact borg, flash frozen and ready to be revived? Since when are the Borg able to re-animate themselves - this never happened in either TNG or First Contact.

    These problems could have been avoided by better writing...say some Borg sphere debris is discovered floating in space, gets brought aboard for study and some nanites manage to infect a human who then starts the assimilation ball rolling...maybe not as dramatic though.

    The rate of assimilation seems to be inconsistent with the movie. Ensign Hawk got assimilated pretty quick (a matter of minutes) in the deflector dish scene.

    A minor point was that Reed and Archer got more phase pistol shots aboard the Borg shop, whereas on Enterprise security got fewer before the Borg adapted.

    Well, at least the transporter worked well in this episode. Why don't they use it more? Maybe we need a dramatic transporter malfunction with a 'red shirt' to make the technology look a little more risky...

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