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Star Trek Ent - Season 4 - Episode 12

Star Trek Ent - 4x12 - Babel One

Originally Aired: 2005-1-28

Synopsis:
Enterprise journeys to Babel with a Tellarite ambassador on board for peace talks with the Andorians, when a distress call from Shran is received. [DVD]

My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 5.44

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Problems
- You can easily tell when a stunt double is used for Talas during her fight with the guard. Her stunt double has a vast difference in breast size!

Factoids
- Shrna commanded the Kumari for twelve years. It was the first ship of its class.
- Thanks to Enterprise's upgrades, the ship can now hold warp 5.06 safely.
- Enterprise was officially canceled at about the time this episode aired. Amazing timing, isn't it? Just when the show starts to get bloody good. Just like Farscape.

Remarkable Scenes
- Hoshi and Archer pretending to argue.
- Archer to Gral: "You people are even uglier than I remember."
- Gral: "I've heard this ship is the pride of Starfleet. I find it small, and unimpressive." Archer: "Funny, I was about to say the same thing about you."
- Archer insulting Trip, tricking him.
- Shran and Gral getting into a fight.
- The revelation that the mystery attack ship was in fact Romulan.
- The Romulan ship suddenly coming to life.
- Reed regarding the alien life support system: "With our luck, they probably breathe fluorine!"
- Reed: "There's no rule that says the bridge has to be on the top of the ship!"
- Talas being shot.
- The zoom out at the end when its revealed that the ship was being controlled from Romulus.

My Review
And season 4 continues to deliver the prequel we've been waiting for. This episode expands on the Romulan aspect of the show, showing us once again that in their early days, they tried to manipulate galactic politics from afar, rather than attempt to directly participate. Again, this is perfect for continuity, because Spock said no one had ever seen a Romulan prior to TOS: Balance of Terror. I also liked the nice reference to Babel, which was also the site of a conference in TOS: Journey to Babel. Bringing back the Andorians; especially Shran, and the Tellarites was a perfect development. Daniels once told Archer that Humans, Vulcans, Andorians, and Tellarites were the initial members of the Federation. And T'Pol told Archer that the Romulans probably fear an alliance between these parties. What they fear is the Federation itself. I wouldn't be surprised if the Earth-Romulan wars were a direct attempt by the Romulans to disrupt the founding of the Federation in 2161, which is six years from this episode and plenty of time to wage such a conflict. The Romulan ship itself was fascinating. Controlling a ship remotely could have several advantages, but many disadvantages as well. If these are the types of ships that will be used during the Earth-Romulan wars, I can see how a stalemate might be possible. Earth might even find a way to jam the transmitters so those ships can no longer receive instructions. That could be why the Romulans eventually abandon the design. There was only one thing that annoyed me... I wish we'd got to see a little bit more of that ship. I want to know how it works and why they designed it like that. It's fascinating. Okay, I was wrong, there was one other thing that annoyed me. Did anyone else catch that Travis was interrupted in the middle of one of his lines? First they give him barely anything to say, now they're not even letting him finish sentences! ;) Anyway, this episode was marvelous, and I'm looking forward to seeing more.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Bob on 2012-03-26 at 7:26am:
    OK... so this annoys me, if you watch Balance of Terror, where the Enterprise fist meets the Romulans, Spock says no human has seen a Romulan, because viewscreens where not availiable during the Earth - Romulan war!!

    So...just saying we are not seeing the Roulans now is not enough, because your just ignoring the very reason Spock gave!! Either follow the written history,or dont...on this basis the entire Enterprise series is not canon because they have viewscreens. Also, spock makes it clear the Romulan war is fought with old nuclear(?) technology, not phasers and photon torpedoes....*sigh*
  • From Kethinov on 2012-03-26 at 5:56pm:
    Spock's exact line was this: "As you may recall from your histories, this conflict was fought by our standards today with primitive atomic weapons and in primitive space vessels which allowed no quarter, no captives. Nor was there even ship-to-ship visual communication. Therefore, no human, Romulan, or ally has ever seen the other."

    He didn't say there were not viewscreens. He said there was no ship-to-ship visual communication. That statement allows for Enterprise's interpretation that the Romulans possessed the capability but refrained from using it to conceal their identities. No continuity error there.

    As for "primitive atomic weapons," that one is harder to rationalize. Spock did also say "by our standards today" though which could imply that the phasers and photon torpedos of Ent and TOS may in fact be based on some type of atomic power, with Ent's simply being less advanced.
  • From krs321 on 2012-11-02 at 11:29am:
    Yeah, the only thing that's way off is the use of atomic weapons. There is obviously no way this is reconcilable with any timeline. I don't think the writers even wanted to waste time on it.

    I don't recall which, but there is an episode where the Enterprise is damaged by an old nuclear weapon and I'm pretty sure by now we'd have heard if the NX-1 used atomic-based weapons vs antimatter weapons (slash the antimatter-engine powered phase-cannons)

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