Star Trek: Enterprise Review – “The Shipment”

Another B&B-less episode. Feels good to breathe clean air again.

The Shipment

Cast & Crew

Director: David Straiton
Written By: Chris Black & 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
John Cothran Jr. as Gralik
Jack Alsted as Sloth #2
Sam Witwer as Sloth #3
John Eddins as Xindi Reptilian
Steven Culp as Major Hayes
Randy Oglesby as Degra

Episode Information

Originally Aired: October 15, 2003
Season: Three
Episode: Six
Production: 058

What Happened

After infiltrating a Xindi-Sloth plant that synthesizes vital explosive materials for the Xindi super-weapon, Archer, Reed and MACO Major Hayes capture and interrogate the plant foreman, Gralik, who upon learning of the Xindi council’s attack on Earth, establishes an uneasy alliance with Archer.

Review

I don’t know why I liked this episode. It was fairly uneventful and tame. I guess it had more to do with the fact that we actually got some info on the Xindi. Backstory, that has been woefully lacking up till now, was delivered in healthy doses in this episode. And we got some very interesting tidbits, especially regarding the sixth Xindi species, the Avians.

High Point

The Xindi revelations. Good stuff that drives the story forward, bigtime.

Low Point

Major Hayes needs to add more to episode, which I think he can. Make him more aggressive to offset Archer’s cautiousness. That leaves us with better scenes.

The Scores

Originality: This is primarily a bridge piece, nothing too stunning. 4 out of 6.

Effects: Simple, but affective. 4 out of 6.

Story: Enjoyable, if tame. 4 out of 6.

Acting: Bakula is working out better, and the guest cast is working out well. 5 out of 6.

Emotional Response: There’s no sense of urgency, more like annoyance that things are moving faster. 3 out of 6.

Production: Yeah, it’s a cave, but with fire in it. 4 out of 6

Overall: Again, it’s a bridge piece that does help the overall flow out. 4 out of 6.

Total: 28 out of 42

Episode Media

From StarTrek.com

Next Time on Enterprise (November 5, 2003)

Twilight

After Enterprise is assaulted by severe spatial distortions, Archer loses the ability to form new, long-term memories, causing him to wake up each morning unaware that any time has passed since the day he was afflicted. Despite the crew’s best efforts to keep him involved in decisions, it becomes clear over time that they can’t continue to function in this manner, leading T’Pol to become his caretaker and Trip to take command of the ship. [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

14 replies on “Star Trek: Enterprise Review – “The Shipment””

  1. babasyzygy says:

    Best episode yet
    To my mind, this was the best episode we’ve seen on Enterprise. It
    reminded me of some of the most taut Deep Space Nine eps.

    Our characters have a definite goal, and are approaching that goal
    intelligently. We’re learning things about our opponents – giving the
    whole conflict a more real feel. We know some ways in which their
    technology is different from the Enterprise’s, and we know a little bit
    more about their psychology.

    I loved that they made an attempt to show the conflict from the Xindi’s
    point of view – they feel that for them the clock is running out, too,
    against these humans who are fated to destroy them. It’s becoming
    more clear that they are just being used as a weapon in the temporal
    cold war. Too often when we see the Xindi, it’s like we’re looking at the
    Legion of Doom from the Superfriends.

    Lastly, I loved the doubt that the alien tech felt: did he make the right
    choice in trusting these humans?

    Too often, Star Trek is SF at its worst – our characters encounter speed
    bumps that are there for no other reason than to let the chracters (and
    SFX teams) flex their muscles while quippping wittily. SF is at its best
    when it makes us feel that the protanganists are part of a real,
    functioning universe. This was a great episode for making us feel that
    the events we observe are arising out of living, breathing alien cultures.

    • is says:

      Re: Best episode yet
      I agree wholeheartedly…
      This was a great episode. It could have had more action, but it was good for the storyline, it was good for the characters.

      We need more like this.

  2. joe__gee says:

    This is the first episode I got to watch in HD …
    You really need to see it in HD to appreciate the effects. The effects aren’t up to Firefly’s level, but they’re not bad. This story arc is a definite improvement, it’s a shame it’s not being rewarded with higher ratings. Too little, too late? :/

    To diverge for a moment, thanks AngryMob for turning me on to Firefly. You recommended it so strongly. I resisted. Finally one evening I broke down and downloaded all the episodes. I’ll definitely be buying the boxed set. It *is* very special work. Any more news on a movie deal?

    Peace,

    -Joe G.

    • Cerberus7 says:

      Re: This is the first episode I got to watch in HD …

      This story arc is a definite improvement, it’s a shame it’s not being rewarded with higher ratings. Too little, too late? :/

      Yep. I haven’t seen an episode of Enterprise since Smallville started its new eps, and while it kinda saddens me to learn that I’m missing some good stuff, I really no longer care. :P to whoever is responsible for killing the Trekkie in me.

  3. dubbayoo42 says:

    Next week…
    Let’s hope the originality score is about a zero or 1 given the show is ripping off Memento for the premise.

    • theangrymob says:

      Re: Next week…

      Let’s hope the originality score is about a zero or 1 given the show is ripping off Memento for the premise.

      But if you’re gonna rip something off, go for the best!

      • y42 says:

        Re: Next week…

        Let’s hope the originality score is about a zero or 1 given the show is
        ripping off Memento for the premise.

        But if you’re gonna rip something off, go for the best!

        GroundHog Day? : )

        Oh yeah, that was a TNG ep allready…nevermind.

        • Trekkie says:

          Re: Next week…
          Oh come on. that was not a rip off of Memento. Memento wasn’t even written or out yet. Plus the premise has nothing to do with short term memory, it’s just an evil space anomoly that’s only been done 50 times

        • Kaki says:

          Re: Next week…
          According to the dates on those sites, that TNG episode was first aired before GroundHog Day came out. The [pre|post|]production times likely overlaped some. But surely the “caught in a loop” plot is much older than both.

          When I saw the description for next week’s Ent, I didn’t think Memento so much as that it would be an allegory for Alzheimer’s.

          • puddleglum says:

            Re: Next week…

            But surely the “caught in a loop” plot is much older than both.

            Are there any Doctor Who fans here? I remember Tom Baker Episodes in the 70’s when they get caught in loops a lot. Definitely before Ground Hogs Day, but that was a great movie too.

            I have not seen Memento, but from what I hear of it reminds me of “Soldier of Arete” by Gene Wolf where a Roman or Greek Soldier runs around ancient Greece with a wound to his head that makes him forget everything whenever he goes to sleep. He writes down everything that happens to him each day and then reads it the next while trying to find out who he is. He also sees Gods, though no one else does. I think this was supposed to be a trilogy but I only read two books long ago and forget the details. I did read the Earth of the New Sun series by Wolfe and Severin in that series notes that he has the opposite problem: he remembers everything in great detail and can never forget.

  4. Daemonik says:

    Whuh?
    I was shocked, SHOCKED! I tell you, at the total lack of gratuitious boobies this week. What has happend to the Enterprise that I grew up with when you can’t even see a decent decon-gel rubdown, or Vulcan accu(feel-me-up)pressure?? I was already disappointed that last weeks episode showcasing Hoshi left out the bikini scene AND the Hoshi/Slave Girl in a cage scene.

    Where am I supposed to find my cheap porn now?

    • Christine243 says:

      Re: Whuh?
      You are soooo right on the money with your comment. The Trek franchise has gotten so bad with the introduction of Enterprise. The writing is horrible, the characters don’t gel or mesh with each other, the series is cheapened by the constant overt sexual “energy” that T’Pol’s character keeps trying to pull off. Its ridiculous. None of the deep, well written stories of the past Treks are showcased in Enterprise. The actors almost appear not to like each other or something, its weird. I could care less what happens to any of them. If they die in the expanse, so be it! Who cares. There is absolutely nothing that makes Enterprise work except for its original (not the new jazzed up version) intro music. They need to scrap Enterprise now and start over with a different Trek premise… the franchise is going down the drain.

  5. TechnoGirl says:

    Archer gets Alzheimers …. WTF ?? !
    After Enterprise is assaulted by severe spatial distortions, Archer loses the ability to form new, long-term memories, causing him to wake up each morning unaware that any time has passed since the day he was afflicted. Despite the crew’s best efforts to keep him involved in decisions, it becomes clear over time that they can’t continue to function in this manner, leading T’Pol to become his caretaker and Trip to take command of the ship

    Oh fer heaven’s sake! I’ll bet my eye teeth this is a B&B episode…who else could be so UNoriginal? What? Does Bill Murray makes a gest appearance as the forehead of the week maybe?

    You know…I’ve missed the last 3 episodes of Enterpoop and I feel I haven’t missed a thing…actually spent my time better NOT watching TV dreck….and I’m a Trekkie way back from the 60’s but this crap is just too insipid to watch.

    Oh and one more thing…it’s “THE Enterprise” not “Enterprise” you B&B assh*les .THE THE THE ….”THE” is a part of speech called a “definite article” . SO USE IT you witless overpaid hacks because it’s just plain ANNOYING (not trendy) when you don’t.

    {sigh} … What? Me annoyed?

    • TwistyHat says:

      Re: Archer gets Alzheimers …. WTF ?? !
      From the description it sounds nothing like Groundhog day. More like ‘The Scholars tale’ by Dan Simmons, except Archer is presumably not growing younger.

      As for Enterprise, it can be without “the” :)

Comments are closed.