Star Trek: Enterprise – “Ra-Jiin”

What marketing boob is behind these trailers? Someone needs a bitch-slapping, badly!

Ra-Jiin

Cast & Crew

Director: Mike Vejar
Teleplay By: Brent V. Friedman and Chris Black
Story By: Paul Brown and Brent V. Friedman

Starring
Scott Bakula as Captain
Jonathan Archer
Connor Trinneer as Chief
Engineer Charles "Trip" Tucker III
Jolene Blalock as Sub-commander
T’Pol
Dominic Keating as Lt.
Malcolm Reed
Anthony Montgomery
as Ensign Travis Mayweather
Linda Park as Ensign Hoshi
Sato
John Billingsley
as Dr. Phlox

Guest Cast
Nikita Ager as Rajiin
B.K. Kennelly as Alien Merchant
Steve Larson as Zjod
Dell Yount as B’Rat Ud
Scott McDonald as Xindi Reptillian
Ken Lally as Security Guard
Tucker Smallwood as Xindi Humanoid
Rick Worthy as Xindi Sloth
Randy Oglesby as Degra

Episode Information

Originally Aired: October 1, 2003
Season: Three
Episode: Four
Production: 056

What Happened

Rescued by Archer from an alien bazaar, a captivating slave girl, Rajiin, uses her erotic, hypnotic mental powers on the crew to steal data on humans for her Xindi overlords. But when her deception is discovered, Archer throws her in the brig, forcing the Reptilian Xindi to storm the ship, weapons blazing, to spring her free.

Meanwhile, Trip and T’Pol initiate a dangerous experiment to insulate the ship from further destruction from strange physical phenomena in the Delphic Expanse.

Review

Let’s see: A sex slave and a bare-fisted brawl. All we’re missing is that fuzzy-focus lens (which we nearly had) and we’d be back in TOS. And that’s not really a bad thing.

All that and ::GASP:: we moved the overall plot forward. Again, we’re abused by the trailer, which didn’t do this episode justice. For one, it wasn’t all seduction and sex. For that matter, the part with Hoshi was just plain funny.

As a side note, did anyone else notice the number of “producers” attached to this episode. Two “creative producers” and at least four more “producers,” “co-producers,” and “co-executive producers.” Sure too many cooks spoil the soup, but methinks Paramount doesn’t trust B&B with anything more important than a moist towellette. Could that be the winds achangin’?

High Point

As I mentioned above, there was something definitely funny and reminiscent of The Naked Now in the line “I speak several languages.”

And for those that thought trading for spices was dumb, I’ll simply quote R. Lee Ermey: “Pick up a textbook you lowest common denominator!”

Low Point

When someone shoots a green blob and it sticks to the wall behind you and it keeps on pulsing, here’s a tip: RUN!

The Scores

Originality: Sex slaves aren’t exactly new territory for Trek, but she was used in a slightly different way. Expect Ra-Jiin to return later on. 4 out of 6.

Effects: It wasn’t an effects heavy episode, but they seem to make even the routine stuff look good. 5 out of 6.

Story: The overall story is shaping up nicely with the revelation of a “bio-weapon.” Slightly more insidious than just a big laser beam. The episode itself, doesn’t stand out too much. 4 out of 6.

Acting: Nothing stellar, but it didn’t suck either. 3 out of 6.

Emotional Response: It was funny where it was trying to be and serious where necessary. The writers are definitely edging up the tension overall. 5 out of 6.

Production: Floating cities? At least it wasn’t a cave. 3 out of 6

Overall: At last, plot movement. Sure it’s glacially paced, but at least I want to stick it out and see how it turns out. 5 out of 6.

Total: 29 out of 42

Episode Media

From StarTrek.com

Next Time on Enterprise (October 8, 2003)

Impulse

Boarding a damaged Vulcan vessel adrift in an asteroid field, Archer and his team discover that the remaining crew have mutated into violent, zombie-like creatures. When T’Pol begins to succumb to the mutation, the crew must fight their way out before they lose her forever.Video Preview

Additional Notes and Comments

If you’re interested in what’s in TheAngryMob’s review queue, check out my What’s Coming page.

TheAngrymob

16 replies on “Star Trek: Enterprise – “Ra-Jiin””

  1. Crazy Monkey says:

    Archer still showing insufficient resolve
    Archer allowed the spy to survive. Why? Yeah, she’s cute and it’s all not her fault, but the survival of the humanity is on the line.

    I understand that he would want to keep her alive for questioning, but she clearly had little info for him, and far too much about him.

  2. Daemonik says:

    Problems
    Okay, so here I am, flying humanities only hope against a dangerous alien race through hostile territory. So what do I do? Why I take on a runaway slave girl who was recently in contact with my enemies and give her unrestricted access to my ship, that’s what I do! Then, when her deception is discovered and the enemy demonstrates just how important she and her information are to them, I don’t kill her on the spot, because it’s not like the lives of a few billion people rely on us knowing more about the Xindi than the Xindi do about us.

    For that matter, here I am, a Xindi desperately trying to kill a race that will destroy my homeworld in 400(?) years. So do I take the time to build up my information on them? Do I send ‘peace’ envoys to their planet to gather information knowing that I have quite a bit of time to build the weapon that will spell their doom? Shucks no. I attack them with a weapon that won’t kill them all and will rightly piss off the survivors as well as let them know about a enemy they’d never even heard of before.

    Then, when they send a ship to investigate my race, probably to gather information so that they can effectively counter attack, do I swamp that ship with a task force, tractor it to a suitable location and throw its crew my medical teams for dissection? Nope, I send a slave chick with a built-in bioscanner so that she can be discovered and therefore tip off the humans that I’m trying to build a bioweapon as well as a planet-killer. Oh, and I’ll leave a corpse behind so that the humans can find out even more information about my race, possibly create a bioweapon of their own perhaps in combination with that species altering virus they conveniently picked up last episode.

    Yeah, that’s what I’ll do.

    • vanyel says:

      Re: Problems
      Yes, but trading spices for critical shielding was funny at least, and surprisingly enough, very plausible. The spice trade was one of the major factors in exploring The New World, and in fact was what had Columbus out tripping over an unexpected continent.

      I thought it was better than average, but I have to agree, the entire premise is bogus.

    • Boglin says:

      Re: Problems
      It’s the intergalactic standard of courtsey. Yes, it may seem silly not to have killed the spy. Then again, it seems kind of silly for the Xindi to have not just blown up Enterprise and been done with the whole thing. It’s just kind of a reciprocity to do things things.

      I mean, if courtsey dies, the whole system falls apart. Suddenly, ships start exploring the Galaxy in different planes of motion. They build ships with proprietary docking hatches. They might even start evolving into non-humanoid shapes. My god, they might even become incompatible for cross-species reproduction! Then where would we be?

  3. Kaki says:

    Yeah, better than the preview,…
    …I agree. But Archer should have killed her when he saw that they were going to get away with her, or at least he should have tried. You know, just before the alien boarding party leaves, he and she lock eyes as she is pulled down the hall. She silently pleads for help, his is a look of concern and sympathy, then it moves to sleel determination in the face of a hard choice. He raises the rifle that he stole from a grunt that he and two of the marines wrestled to the ground moments earlier, and aims it at her. One of her escorts notices her direction of gaze and, as Archer fires, steps in the way of the shot. The escort thug dies, Archer is pinned down by supressive fire, and RaJiin is pulled off Enterprise.

    Also, why not try to beam her back? Hell, why not have someone beaming out hostile intruders as they come aboard? Maybe they don’t have site to site, but surely they have site to scrambled. I would have someone stationed at the transporter during any red alert just in case such creative ideas occured to me.

    Also, it seems that the Xindi have now been shown to be too powerful. There is no reason why they aren’t just destroying Enterprise.

    And all one needs to stop distortions in space-time and the laws of physics is special paint? Those are some pretty lame distortions. I liked it better when it sounded like you had to put a few inches of some hull plating on. Gee, do they have to paint the windows? The horror.

    • TechnoGirl says:

      Re: Yeah, better than the preview,…

      And all one needs to stop distortions in space-time and the laws of physics is special paint?

      In The B&B boneheaded bizarro Universe….unfortunately yes

      • Kaki says:

        Re: Yeah, better than the preview,…

        You know, now that I think about it, didn’t the Enterprise-D run across spatial distortions in a dark matter nebula? I seem to recall they didn’t have the option of just painting the ship. They had to leave real slow and careful like, with a shuttle up ahead of them to scan for the distortions.

        Picard: Spatial distortions? Damn! Geordi, get your overalls and the spray gun.

        And while we are on the subject of distortions, why didn’t they even talk about turning off the big weird sphere thing they found a couple weeks back? They could have been heros to the local races for getting rid of the distortions if it was causing them. Or alternatively, they could have made them worse if the sphere was supressing them or something, and pissed off the local races. They didn’t even seem to consider it.

        • is says:

          The one good thing in this…
          The one good thing in this was the fact that the stuff they were working on blew up… You gotta admit that it’s pretty rare that things don’t work just peachy , and all in one episode. I expected them to have a “tense” moment making the special paint, but then have it done and applied by the end of the show. This is such a small thing I know, but there isn’t much else good about this episode.

    • joe__gee says:

      Re: Yeah, better than the preview,…

      And all one needs to stop distortions in space-time and the laws of physics is special paint? Those are some pretty lame distortions. I liked it better when it sounded like you had to put a few inches of some hull plating on. Gee, do they have to paint the windows? The horror.

      No, the horror is if the paint is required to be day-glow pink. :)

      -Joe

    • Vesh says:

      Re: Yeah, better than the preview,…

      And all one needs to stop distortions in space-time and the laws of physics is special paint?

      Exactly! But you fail to realize that the spacetime distortions are also just as special since they’re generated from reactors built by the Trellium-D mining, siding and hull beautification industry of the Delphic Expanse, Local 0x9AB6F1.

      • Kaki says:

        Re: Yeah, better than the preview,…

        Exactly! But you fail to realize that the spacetime distortions are also just as special since they’re generated from reactors built by the Trellium-D mining, siding and hull beautification industry of the Delphic Expanse, Local 0x9AB6F1.

        Then they had better watch who they tell about that secret paint formula. If the Local 0x9AB6F1 gets word that someone is trying to break into their insulation market, Enterprise might find itself subject to a hostile takeover.

  4. enloop says:

    The Sun’s A Hoot, But Don’t Believe It
    Hah! The Sun is a sensationalistic tabloid that no one, including, presumably, itself, takes seriously. The paper’s main claim to fame is the amount of exposed female flesh displayed on its pages.

    The paper’s a real hoot, but don’t believe anything in it until you see it reported in at least two other credible places.

  5. grimjack says:

    Marines?
    Ok, No one has asked this yet. The Enterprise is boarded by a hostile race. Along with letting the spy-slave girl go alive, the marines that were such a big deal get used for what? They must be holding their bunks down against those spatial distortions.

  6. Kamakiriad says:

    So many mistakes
    This was the first truly bad episode so far this season.

    1. The Xindi are apparently WAY more powerful than Enterprise. Why are they having big meetings about what to do? If their boarding parties are so stinking invulnerable to federation phasers, why not just take over the whole ship and use the now captured crew to run tests of their bio-weapon? Why not capture the ship and get the entire database? Suspension of disbelief…fading

    2. A confessed spy is in your brig. She holds the information that would allow the Xindi to destroy your entire species! The Xindi come to rescue her at great risk. So obviously her information is critical to their genocide plans. So what should you do? Stand in the halls shooting a laser that has no effect OR run back to the brig, and KILL the spy no matter hot “hot” she is? Plausibility dissappearing.

    3. A ship manages to latch on to your ship while you are doing violent manuvers in the middle of battle. You should…release the ship from your own docking port from the bridge while they’re strolling around your ship, send 3-4 of these uber-marines into the ship with an explosive charge to disable it, close every bulkhead on the ship (this is a red alert) costing the invaders hours to get their objective? No, you leave all bulkheads open, place a valet by their ship so they can easily get away, and throw 2-4 crewmen (not the marines) at them. Captain’s competence…dissolving for the sake of the (supposed) plot.

    I could go on, there were a bunch of lame decisions made to help the story-arc along, but a few more episodes like this one and I’ll start to something else. I’m not a geek that expects perfect SK episodes, but I do expect ompetent writing fer cripes sake!

    • puddleglum says:

      Re: So many mistakes
      Your objections are very clear, well put and I think accurate.

      • 1. The Xindi are apparently WAY more powerful than Enterprise….

        The Reptile Xindi did just waltz in (and wasn’t that an insect at one point?). But it is one thing to do a hit and run and another to completly takeover and hold onto what you have taken (I will make no comparison to current political situations). What the Reptile Xindi are doing is unsanctioned by the Xindi as a whole. This is a rogue operation, possibly with limited resources. What the boarding parties did show were a variety of weapons with different technologies. If that was an Insect Xinidi, it seemed to have a different weapon than the Reptile Xindi. More on this later.

      • 2. A confessed spy is in your brig….

        Yeah, he should have killed her but that is not what the Human Race is all about. By they end of the show she is definitely sympathetic to the humans as is evident at the Xindi council meeting. She also seems to be an operative, an agent and has no voice or standing with the Xindi. She cannot tell them what to do. I am curious to see if she is a mercenary or someone the Xindi kidnapped and trained (like a Janissary).

      • 3. A ship manages to latch on to your ship while you are doing violent manuvers in the middle of battle…

        I could point out that the engines are knocked out. I guess the impulse engines are too, otherwise they could speed up and slow down in little jerks to stop the bad guys from docking. You are correct about their tactics, but if they did everything right then there would be no story. As far as the marines go, I think they are the new redshirts, anonymous cannon fodder to be killed on each show. There is no character developement or interaction with the rest of the crew. Maybe there will be in future episodes (day in the life of a redshirt?) but I doubt it.

      • What I think is going on is the thing everyone always says they want: story arcs and continuity. For example:

        • Archer, is still feeling the effects of the transformation from the previous episode.
        • T’Pol and Engineer Boy are developing a relationship through these recurring treatments. (I keep expecting her to grab him the wrong way and discover the Vulcan neck pinch)
        • T’Pol had some damage to her brain from Rajinn’s voodoo. I expect this damage will permanently loosen her up and that she will have trouble controlling her emotions in future episodes, maybe become involved with Trip
        • Rajinn, through Archer not killing her is now sympathetic to the humans. She will either be sent out on further missions against the Enterprise, guiltily doing her master’s bidding or she will work on the inside of the Xindi organization to help Enterprise, maybe by turning one Xindi faction against the other
        • The Xindi are conflicted, treacherous and at odds with one another. They are not a unified group of bad guys (like the Legion of Doom).
        • This last is important. The Xindi are not just a stereotypical bad guy group.

          From this episode I get the impression that the Xindi are like the Federation. The multitude of species is one hint. The divergent technologies is another. If they all developed on one planet they would have more or less the same technology as each other. I think there was a character in a previous show saying the Xindi were all from one planet. This planet was shown destroyed. Maybe instead, there were a number of species fighting over a planet and in the wake of the conflict that destroyed that planet, they had a peace treay and formed an alliance. Like the League of Nations or the UN after the WWI and WWII.

          I think it would be more interesting if they were a sort of Bizzarro World Federation. A Federation without all the goody-goody rules and brotherly love of the real Federation. One without all the qualities that fans of Babylon 5 et al. always object to.

          This Xindi Federation are allied and work together but don’t really like it. They plot, jockey for power and go behind each others back. They would shoot an unarmed prisoner in the brig, whereas Archer from the proto-Federation would not. They would commit genocide to protect the Federation( I mean Xindi Alliance). They would even create Biologic Weapons and use them reluctantly, not out of evil but out of self-preservation. They are so powerful they let Enterprise come to them, thinking they can take it out at anytime. They are so divided, they can never decide when to take it out. They develope terrible weapons while objecting to it the whole time, thinking they would not use them. They are being manipulted by the Temporal Cold War guys to destroy the real Federation before it gets started. They are not evil. There intentions are good, and in many ways they are more advanced, culturally, technologically and politcally than the Vulcan/Human/proto-Federation region of space. The only trouble is they are so amoral and conflicted that they come off as evil and corrupt (sort of like Europe vs. the US at least before and between the two World Wars).

          Parallels can be drawn between this scenario and present day politicis. Any one of these rogue nations (North Korea, Iran, Iraq) or terrorists groups can be taken out by the combined might of the Xindi Alliance (UN) but the UN doesn’t want to, or can’t decide what to do. The Enterprise is an agent of the rougue nations. The Enterprise is a terrorist mission to attack the Xindi Alliance. The various Xindi are France, the US, Russia, China fighting over what to do. Who do you think the Reptiles are?

      • Kamakiriad says:

        Re: So many mistakes
        I like your points, but I still have issues more with the inconsistent behavior of the crew than I do with the overall story arc.

        Today, on a warship, we have developed protocols that are put in place in certain situations. Most of them would still transfer to a spacecraft 200 years later. Basically, all that is being thrown out. When B&B need to make a plot point, they turn their charachters into helpless idiots to get from A to B. THis was the same thing they did on Voyager. It’s something Gene would never have done and one of the things that makes latter-Gene Treks suck. TNG and DS9 were the last Trek that actually kept their crew in a competent position. Intruder on your ship? Close the bulkheads.

        I disagree with your take on killing the spy-vixen. It’s one thing to spare the life of someone with minor information, but when they tell you they are going to destroy all life on your planet with the information they have, you don’t feel sorry for them because they are hot. It’s doubley lame when the week before Archer had no problem putting a guy in the airlock and flushing. So…let me get this straight…you (Captain Archer) are willing to kill a guy to get back your anti-matter to save the lives of your crew, but you aren’t willing to extend the same courtesy to a spy that is risking the lives of your entire planet? The writing sucks, and this particular episode was yet another moral hyporicy real people would never have. Archer is either capable of killing a person to save lives or he isn’t. That isn’t something you change your mind on.

        This is like the Tuvix episode of Voyager (worst episode ever). The creew loses Neelix and Tuvok. They morn them. They get to know this new creature Tuvix who is sensitive, and obviously an entirely new life form. Janeway decides to go against ALL her previous moral decisions and make this guy “change back” at gunpoint. She kills a new and unique being who is completely innocent of any crime to get back her two buddies who are considered dead by everyone on the crew but her.

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