I'm sitting here trying to figure out what to write because I honestly don't think anything happened in this episode. Let's see if I can winnow something out of my excessive boredom. In the middle of all sorts of wacky happenings that defy the law, orders, and by Trip's own words, "equations," of physics on board the ship, some alien pirates abscond with a bunch of important space things. Quantum stomps around in his new but already excessively played Season of Discontent and comes close to murdering an alien hostage for information. Hoshi acts bored, Mayweather bores, and Phlox orders a run-ragged Trip to get thee to a Vulcanry for some more node bumping. Once they trace the alien pirates to a very Borgish sphere, Hoshi rouses herself slightly to download some Xindi information that may or may not turn out to be helpful. We don't actually get the chance to find out. About the only significant thing that happens in this non-episode is that Enterprise finally has its first Rent-a-Red-Shirt death.
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I'm not in a good mood. The agonizing fact that I have to rewatch this banausic blob of an episode is compounded by the fact that my iBook is in the shop, and by some complicated set-up -- that minimizes visual perception and maximizes back and neck pain -- I have to use my husband's PC. However, I have amended my earlier comment that this episode bored the checked pants off me, because some of the action, though predictable, wasn't that bad. BUT I still think these writers (hereafter referred to as "the poor, stifled writers") produced something that is far from satisfactory. People, I've been inundating myself with second-season Deep Space Nine, first-season The West Wing, and all manner of Farscape this summer -- don't tell me I don't know good TV.
A few "for instances": I didn't like how they handled the Chronicle of a Death Crewmanned part. I'm not saying they should have had a whole mopey funereal episode, à la Tasha Yar, but they didn't do anything, and it just fell flatter than a two-liter of Diet Coke left open in the San Francisco sun. Furthermore, Quantum's bounced around as Angry Unfun Ball in these last two episodes, but it's not he who lost his sister in the attack on Florida, it's Trip, and I see Quantum's anger mismanagement as ringing very hollow because of that. In fact, I resent that, by virtue of its existence, Quantum's anger has become another character on the show. An annoying, overused, overpaid, overemphasized character that walked on for the hell of it and convinced the director that his presence was necessary and vital to the story. Meanwhile, the characters I would like to care about -- if they were ever given the Keys to the Development Kingdom -- aren't getting squat.
Quantum puts in some desk time. Porthos (aww, Porthos!) lies on a cushion on the floor and whimpers. With a coldly disinterested look, Quantum glances at him briefly. Porthos whimpers again, this time getting to his feet, and howls a bit. Finally, Quantum says, "Come here." But without any hint of affection or kindness in his tone. I know they're trying to make Quantum all Angry Man Bad-Ass, but does it have to extend to being a prick to his puppy? Porthos runs over to his person and eagerly puts his paws on Quantum's arm. "What's the problem?" Quantum asks stonily. That's it -- I'm putting Quantini back into his box because there is no way I can be a Kinder, Gentler Keckler to this lout. No. Way. There's a thump as the camera shows that a book fell on the floor. Quantum replaces it and looks around.