Star Trek: Enterprise – "Kir’Shara"

MacGuffin in hand, can Archer make it back in time to prevent a galactic war?

Kir’Shara

Cast & Crew

Director: David Livingston
Written By: Michael Sussman

Starring
Scott Bakula as Jonathan Archer
Connor Trinneer as Charles “Trip” Tucker III
Jolene Blalock as T’Pol

Dominic Keating as Malcolm Reed
Anthony Montgomery as Travis Mayweather
Linda Park as Hoshi Sato
John Billingsley as Dr. Phlox

Guest Cast
Robert Foxworth as V’Las
Jeffrey Combs as Shran
John Rubinstein as Kuvak
Gary Graham as Soval
Michael Reilly Burke as Koss
Kara Zediker as T’Pau

Todd Stashwick as Talok
Jack Donner as Vulcan Priest
Melodee M. Spevack as Andorian Com Voice

Episode Information

Originally Aired: November 26, 2004
Season: Four
Episode: Eight
Production: 084

What Happened

Archer, T’Pol and rebel leader T’Pau struggle to reach the Vulcan capital to publicly unveil their discovery of a revered ancient artifact that could revolutionize Vulcan society and topple the corrupt government.

Meanwhile, with help from allies among the Vulcans and Andorians, the Enterprise crew attempts to stop V’Las and the Vulcan High Command from launching a sneak attack upon rival planet Andoria. More from StarTrek.com

Review

The conflict widens, the stakes are raised, and the pressure increases. All the elements you need for a successful Act II.

High Point

V’Los’s final “conspiracy” scene. Thank you Manny! This is going to be fun.

Low Point

Way too rushed ending, but I do understand. There’s a little more to do, but it wouldn’t fill out another hour of TV. It also lends itself to some major tension

The Scores

Originality: OK, it’s not starkly original, but it broadens the overall story canvas. 3 out of 6.

Effects: Capital ships going after each other in fantastic battles. A hint of part of what made DS9 so much fun to watch. 5 out of 6.

Story: We’re left satisfied with the main plot outline, but still yearing for a new plot’s outcome. 5 out of 6.

Acting: Kudos to the main cast as well as Combs and Graham for some great tension. 5 out of 6.

Emotional Response: The interrogation was fantastic. 5 out of 6.

Production: Great sets, once we get out of the “desert.” 4 out of 6

Overall: A satisfying conclusion to a great arc. More, please! 5 out of 6.

Total: 32 out of 42

Enterprise Schedule

Enterprise (like most shows this time of year) goes into reruns until next year. It returns with pair of stand-alone episodes: “Daedalus” (01.07.2005) and “Observer Effect” (01.14.2005). After that another arc begins with “Babel One” (01.28.2005) and continues with “United” (04.04.2005) and concludes with “The Aenar” (02.11.2005). That puts us at fourteen episodes, one more than was initially ordered by UPN for this season. The remainder of the season still hangs in the balance.

Next Week on Enterprise (December 10, 2004)

Borderland (Originally Aired 10/29/2004 – Score: 31/42)

After a dangerous group of genetically engineered humans called “Augments” escapes from their secluded planet intent on causing all-out war between Earth and the Klingons, the Enterprise crew is called into action and Archer enlists the help of criminal genius Dr. Arik Soong, the scientist responsible for creating the Augments.

While searching for the Augments in the Borderland — the volatile region between the Klingon Empire and the Orion Syndicate — Enterprise crosses paths with a band of ruthless Orion slave traders, who kidnap T’Pol and eight other crew members off the ship so they can be sold at auction, forcing Archer to enact a risky rescue mission with Dr. Soong’s help.

Additional Notes and Comments

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

TheAngrymob

42 replies on “Star Trek: Enterprise – "Kir’Shara"”

  1. Eldhrin says:

    Well the break’s irritating, but the episode was good
    Subject says it really. I’m actually following Enterprise again, but the title music is more objectionable every time I hear it.

    • Babbster says:

      Re: Well the break’s irritating, but the episode was good

      Subject says it really. I’m actually following Enterprise again, but the title music is more objectionable every time I hear it.

      The worst thing about the title music to me is that not only do I dislike it but it gets under my skin like a chigger. I have to actively push it out of my head by listening to some music I like…a little Kylie Minogue helps. (I can almost hear the derision already. :])

    • valen1260 says:

      Re: Well the break’s irritating, but the episode was good

      the title music is more objectionable every time I hear it.

      I rejected it at first, then grew to like it when I started watching again last season, and now just fast-forward through it to save time. The weirdest thing is, I was in a Kirkland’s with my wife, and it was playing over their speakers. Though, I think it was a different singer.

  2. valen1260 says:

    more!

    Enterprise is definitely going in the right direction.

    It was nice to see melee combat, a rarity in Trek (completely lacking any beam weapons), but I don’t know how a Human could hold his own against a Vulcan physically. (Stay away, Vulcans! I have fire.)

    I think the ending was a bit heavy-handed. I knew, just looking at the uniform of the man speaking, what he was. It was exciting to speculate who this shadowed figure might be. They didn’t need to both make it obivous and mention “reunification”. Also, I’m confused by the fact that this seems to be an “evil” Romulan plot in this episode, but was later proposed by Spock himself.

    I was scared… TERRIFIED… that Archer was going to reply to the Vulcans, “Live long, and prosper.” Though, if the Syrannites don’t say it like that, where does it come from?

    I would have sworn that the lead opposition to V’Las was none other than The Brain himself, in a plot to take over the (Vulcan) world! But, it was just someone with a voice very similar to Maurice LaMarche. Peace, and long… NARF!

    • TwistyHat says:

      Re: more!
      No, reunification wasn’t proposed by Spock – he was introduced to the idea by some Romulans and then he thought it might be a good idea.

  3. valen1260 says:

    ship design

    I agree that space combat is a fun “seasoning” to the story (and that it was awesome in DS9). It’s interesting to note how Human ship design later dominates the Federation.

    In this episode, you have three distinct design styles: the function-over-form Human, gunship-like Andorians, and artistic and beautiful (and Minbari fighter-like) Vulcans. Also, recall the strangely curved Vulcan vessel from First Contact.

    While it’s nothing new to see different species’ ship designs (Klingon, Romulan, Cardassian, Jem’Hadar, Breen, Reman, Xindi, etc.), it is disappointing to think that *nothing* aesthetic/stylistic is taken from Federation members and contributed to the Federation. Human design supercedes that of apparently all other member worlds, including the co-founders Andoria and Vulcan. While one could argue for efficiency in design, just as many could argue for why the Vulcans have those large rings or wingless fighters.

    I was initially bothered that the ships in The Phantom Menace looked so much better than those in Star Wars, even allowing for evolution in CG. Then I read that the ships in EpI were from a time of art and peace, and that the Original Trilogy ships were mass-produced for the war. While I suppose the mass-produced thing could hold for ST, I can’t imagine the “enlightened” Federation would abandon aesthetics.

    Maybe this echoes what Trekkie mentioned in last episode’s forum about how this story arc sets the humans up as the dominant figure in the UFP (or, more accurately, weakens the Vulcans). It’s disappointing, though, that the Federation is more an assimilation by Earth than a blending of all.

    • GusherJizmac says:

      Re: ship design
      Federation != Starfleet. I think Starfleet is largely run and manned by Humans, thus they are the ones working on the ship designs.

      • valen1260 says:

        Re: ship design

        Federation != Starfleet

        Any fan knows this, but its interesting how the series continually grey the line. Memory serves that the Enterprise-D was always the “Federation starship Enterprise”. Enterprise cements the idea that Starfleet came first out of whatever Earth government(s) existed as a sort of nonmilitarial military branch concerning space. It was seemingly later incorporated into the UFP. If the Federation is simply the governmental bodies, then Starfleet seems to be everything else. But then, Starfleet seems to have its own governmental structure, answering only to the UFP President(?). (I unfortunately do not have my ST Encyclopedia in the office. ;) Perhaps the Federation is only the abstract association of the planets, a president, a council, and ambassadors.

        Thinking about it seems to make it worse. ;)

    • Timeshredder says:

      Still picking nits

      While I have to agree that Enterprise has improved significantly this season, I really felt that this story arc deteriorated somewhat as it progressed. Most significantly, I took issue with the handling of the Vulcans and logic.

      Both the Syranites and the High Command claim to follow some sort of logical philosophy. Why, then, were both sides so damned emotional? And why shift all the blame on one angry despot Vulcan, one in cahoots with the Romulans, no less? It would’ve made more sense to have the High Command coldly and logically reason their way towards the decision to exterminate the Syrannites, and have a genuine conflict of philosophies (albeit one clearly more “evil”)

      And yeah, what Valen said about the physical conflict. Is Archer secretly genetically enhanced, or what?

      • GrimSean says:

        Re: Still picking nits

        While I have to agree that Enterprise has improved And yeah, what Valen said about the physical conflict. Is Archer secretly genetically enhanced, or what?

        Perhaps he was contaminated with something when he jumped into space in The Augments?

        Seriously though – Kirk held his own against Spock in Amok Time (although Spock was ‘sick’ with the Pon Farr) and Archer had been semi-hijacked by Soval, (who was demonstratably pushing him past most human limits, wandering through the desert like a Vulcan without rest or water), so it’s not that far of a leap for him to be holding his own against the Vulcans.

        • Timeshredder says:

          I’m going to sound like such a nerd here….

          Kirk held his own against Spock in Amok Time (although Spock was ‘sick’ with the Pon Farr) and Archer had been semi-hijacked by Soval, (who was demonstratably pushing him past most human limits

          Kirk received a tr-ox compound shot from McCoy in Amok Time to even the odds a bit. The ep made it clear that he could never have held his own against a Vulcan, on Vulcan, otherwise.

          • dkichline says:

            Re: I’m going to sound like such a nerd here….

            Kirk received a tr-ox compound shot from McCoy in Amok Time to even the odds a bit. The ep made it clear that he could never have held his own against a Vulcan, on Vulcan, otherwise.

            Well to really sound like a nerd… The tri-ox was not to even the odds with regards to Spock’s physical strength. It was to even the odds with regards to the thin Vulcan atmosphere.

            Which come to think of it, they kind of glossed over in this ep.

            • Timeshredder says:

              Yeah, but can you write that in Klingon?

              Well to really sound like a nerd… The tri-ox was not to even the odds with regards to Spock’s physical strength. It was to even the odds with regards to the thin Vulcan atmosphere.

              Hence, “on Vulcan.”

              • GrimSean says:

                Forget the Klingon – read the fine print!

                Well to really sound like a nerd… The tri-ox was not to even the odds with regards to Spock’s physical strength. It was to even the odds with regards to the thin Vulcan atmosphere.

                Hence, “on Vulcan.”

                The kicker is that it wasn’t a tri-ox compound, it was a knock-out drug that simulated the signs of death – remember? Spock thought he killed Kirk, and came out of the pon farr? Then when he returned to the Enterprise and discovered Kirk wasn’t dead he exclaimed “Jim!” and smiled?

            • theangrymob says:

              Re: I’m going to sound like such a nerd here….

              I’m going to out-nerd you both. He didn’t get Tri-Ox. He was given a sedative to make it look like he was dead (to get out of the fight). You’ll excuse me, I need to pack so I can move back into my parents’ basement…

              • Timeshredder says:

                toj

                I’d have to go back to the ep, but I’m pretty certain he was really given the tri-ox, in addition to the sedative that made the plot twist possible. At least, that’s how I always interpreted it, since it was consistent with the thin atmosphere/strong Vulcan situation.

                • GrimSean says:

                  Re: toj

                  I’d have to go back to the ep, but I’m pretty certain he was really given the tri-ox, in addition to the sedative that made the plot twist possible. At least, that’s how I always interpreted it, since it was consistent with the thin atmosphere/strong Vulcan situation.

                  and that’ll teach me to scroll down to the bottom of the page before posting…

                  However, I always thought that the Vulcans weren’t that much stronger than humans – it was just the mental discipline coupled with the harsh nature of Vulcan itself that made them seem that way. Kirk was weakened by the atmosphere and the knockout drug when Spock ‘killed’ him – but before the injection it could have gone either way.

                  • Timeshredder says:

                    Y’know, I have actual work to catch up on….

                    However, I always thought that the Vulcans weren’t that much stronger than humans – it was just the mental discipline coupled with the harsh nature of Vulcan itself

                    Tricky. Roddenberry said that Vulcan had higher gravity and therefore Vulcans were stronger than humans (see The Making of Star Trek), and I’m told that some of the novels state that this is so, but I can’t actually recall an ep that discusses Vulcan gravity. In the DS9 “Take Me Out to the Holosuite” Sisko does state that Vulcans are stronger than humans, but he doesn’t say how much stronger.

                    Of course, there were a lot of other elements to this ep than just the fight scene…

                    • GrimSean says:

                      and I have an exam to prep for….

                      Of course, there were a lot of other elements to this ep than just the fight scene…

                      True, but could we really call ourselves fans if we stopped quibbling over minor things?

                • hck says:

                  Re: toj

                  I’d have to go back to the ep, but I’m pretty certain he was really given the tri-ox, in addition to the sedative that made the plot twist possible. At least, that’s how I always interpreted it, since it was consistent with the thin atmosphere/strong Vulcan situation.

                  Time to geek to the script

                  [SPOCK]
                  Jim!
                  I’m … pleased … to see you, Captain.
                  You seem … uninjured.
                  I am at something of a loss to understand it, however.
                  [KIRK]
                  Blame McCoy. That was no triox compound he shot me with.
                  He slipped in a neuroparalyzer.
                  Knocked me out — simulated death.

        • valen1260 says:

          Re: Still picking nits

          Archer had been semi-hijacked by Soval, (who was demonstratably pushing him past most human limits, wandering through the desert like a Vulcan without rest or water), so it’s not that far of a leap for him to be holding his own against the Vulcans.

          (Vulcan) mind over (Human) matter.

        • hck says:

          Re: Still picking nits

          and Archer had been semi-hijacked by Soval, (who was demonstratably pushing him past most human limits, wandering through the desert like a Vulcan without rest or water), so it’s not that far of a leap for him to be holding his own against the Vulcans.

          He nerve pinched, so he probably also knew _where_ to hit a Vulcan.

      • Babbster says:

        Re: Still picking nits

        Both the Syranites and the High Command claim to follow some sort of logical philosophy. Why, then, were both sides so damned emotional? And why shift all the blame on one angry despot Vulcan, one in cahoots with the Romulans, no less? It would’ve made more sense to have the High Command coldly and logically reason their way towards the decision to exterminate the Syrannites, and have a genuine conflict of philosophies (albeit one clearly more “evil”)

        First off, I think the stakes here were explanation enough of Vulcans pushed to the limits of their emotional control. When contemplating the possible destruction of one’s entire race and culture, that’s pretty trying; the struggle itself is an emotional thing in that, theoretically, both sides would be concerned for the future. The fact that Surak’s teachings had been corrupted also provides a reasonable explanation for the lack of control.

        On the “angry despot Vulcan,” I got the impression that V’Las could BE a Romulan. His mention about wanting to be taken off of Vulcan is an indicator that he either fears for himself or wants to go back home. Or, could he be the product of a Romulan “sleeper” couple?

        Me, I was too busy enjoying myself to get too analytical (a reason I don’t even try to write “reviews” of the things that entertain me). Enterprise is flying in the right direction and things look like they’re just going to get better.

      • valen1260 says:

        Re: Still picking nits

        Both the Syranites and the High Command claim to follow some sort of logical philosophy. Why, then, were both sides so damned emotional?

        This is where this arc really gets under my skin. While it’s possible that logic can be followed “religiously”, religion is rooted in blind faith while logic is rooted in proofs. There can’t be two camps both with “ideal logic”, though they could each argue their case for such. Logic precludes multiple logical truths.

        • PianoComp81 says:

          Re: Still picking nits

          This is where this arc really gets under my skin. While it’s possible that logic can be followed “religiously”, religion is rooted in blind faith while logic is rooted in proofs. There can’t be two camps both with “ideal logic”, though they could each argue their case for such. Logic precludes multiple logical truths.

          But isn’t that the whole point of this three-part story arc? BOTH sides have lost the of ideal logic (though the Syranites seem closer to Surak’s way of teaching). But, they found the original writings of Surak which will help them get back on track with respect to Surak’s philosophies (and the Vulcans that we’re used).

        • Timeshredder says:

          Logical philosopy

          True, but a logical argument leads to a false conclusion, if its premises are incorrect, and a lot of the difference between the camps seem to be premise-based. (do they have a katra? Is the mind-meld harmful?). Also, there may well be more than one logical solution to a problem (is it more logical to suppress all emotions, given that you in fact have them for some reason, or to channel them?)

          In any case logic-as-religion is a long-standing problem with Vulcans, logical beings whose culture nevertheless seems based on tradition and quasi-mysticism.

  4. vanyel says:

    Storylines
    I have to completely agree with the high point: they’ve finally figured out how to keep a story going to give you something to look forward to, as well as making the actual stories more interesting. It’s still not Babylon 5 or Firefly, but it’s definitely worth looking forward to now.

    • yodapez18 says:

      Re:Archer, the living plot hole
      Archer was having some trouble at the beginning of the episode, so id go with whoever said that the thin atmosphere was coutneracted by the katra in his mind. The other possibility is taht because he was there for a few days, maybe he just acclimated, they enver really say how MUCH thinner Vulcans Gravity is.
      Of course having thinner air yet higher gravity doesn’t neccesarily make sense either, i have NO idea what makes oxegen on taht planet, considering its mostly desert, but theoretically there wouldn’t be as much living on the planet to breathe it all up.
      Anyway back to Archer holding his own, he was unpredictable and not logical in his attacks, there is NO reason you would think a flaming torch would stop a vulcan with a gun, so clearly he just confused them with his nonsensical behavior. You don’t neccesarily ahve to be strong to win a fight either, that is the WHOLE point of martial arts, so taht a weaker opponent has a chance against a stronger one. Spock was definitely pretty strong, there were a couple times he did things like crushing a phaser, and smashing a computer screen to a pulp, apparently EVERYONE is stronger then humans beause now the orions are too?
      but it doesn’t matter, humans are plucky

      • Babbster says:

        Re:Archer, the living plot hole

        …i have NO idea what makes oxegen on taht planet, considering its mostly desert, but theoretically there wouldn’t be as much living on the planet to breathe it all up.

        Spice worms?

        • Timeshredder says:

          Re:Archer, the living plot hole

          …i have NO idea what makes oxegen on taht planet, considering its mostly desert.

          Yeah, Vulcan suffers from Old School SF Planet Syndrome. A lot of planets in media SF used to be deserts and moonscapes. I can only assume that some non-desert areas exist that we don’t ever see. Add to that the suggestion made in The Paradise Syndrome that Vulcans were seeded on their planet, and did not evolve there, and you could probably cobble together some possible explanations for how the planet Vulcan we see in Trek could exist.

          • Captain_Avatar says:

            Desert Vulcan
            Anyone remember the novel that came out in the late 1980s called “Spock’s World”? According to Vulcan history the planet was a lot wetter and full of life when the first proto-Vulcans were milling about doing the caveman thing. A tremedous solar flare blasted the planet making it an arid place. It was nice to see large bodies of water and clouds on the planet, but there should be some sort of plant life to support the higher life forms (Vulcans and whatever the Selat eat).

            …i have NO idea what makes oxegen on taht planet, considering its mostly desert.

            Yeah, Vulcan suffers from Old School SF Planet Syndrome. A lot of planets in media SF used to be deserts and moonscapes. I can only assume that some non-desert areas exist that we don’t ever see. Add to that the suggestion made in The Paradise Syndrome that Vulcans were seeded on their planet, and did not evolve there, and you could probably cobble together some possible explanations for how the planet Vulcan we see in Trek could exist.

        • Eldhrin says:

          Re:Archer, the living plot hole

          Spice worms?

          Oh, don’t, please, the thought of a load of Vulcans riding Shai’hulud has me in fits of laughter.

        • vandemar says:

          Re:Archer, the living plot hole

          …i have NO idea what makes oxegen on taht planet, considering its mostly desert, but theoretically there wouldn’t be as much living on the planet to breathe it all up.

          Spice worms?

          Syrannites == Fremen

          When Archer activated the artifact at the end, I was half expecting someone to say, “He is the Kwisatz Haderach!”

  5. viceclown says:

    Romulan Collaborator
    Does anyone know who played the Romulan at the end? I would sware the voice sounded like John Fleck (Sillik) until he came into view. Couldn’t dig this up anywhere but the voice was unmistakable. Just curious.

  6. hck says:

    My high point
    “Your technique has improved.” Think they’ll let him keep it?
    And so another B+B screwup fixed. Thanks Manny!

    • Timeshredder says:

      Re: My high point

      Curiously, McCoy expressly didn’t inherit the technique when he was carrying Spock’s katra. However, that isn’t necessarily an error.

      • babasyzygy says:

        Re: My high point

        Curiously, McCoy expressly didn’t inherit the technique when he was
        carrying Spock’s katra. However, that isn’t necessarily an error.

        Well, McCoy’s carrying of Spock’s katra was clearly much more traumatic than
        Archer’s of Surak. This might be because Surak was Surak after all,
        and Spock was always torn between two worlds, or because McCoy was so
        broken up over Spock’s death and wasn’t in clear communication with Spock’s
        Katra.

        Either way, it seems to be clear now that humans can do the nerve
        pinch but it takes a lot of work. Notice that in the episode the first time he
        does it, he uses two hands. He clearly was thinking about how to do it, where
        McCoy’s effort was much more of a half-remembered instinctual reflex.

    • GrimSean says:

      Re: My high point

      “Your technique has improved.” Think they’ll let him keep it?
      And so another B+B screwup fixed. Thanks Manny!

      I’m sorry, maybe I missed something, but I’m not following your reasoning (it is 2 in the morning for me though). Where is the B&B screw-up that was fixed by this? I don’t remember Archer doing the nerve pinch before this episode, and it was clearly (at least to me) a result of his carrying the Katra. Care to clear that up?

      And, no, I don’t think they’ll let him keep it – that would reek of continuity!

      • Timeshredder says:

        We don’t discuss it with outsiders

        Roddenberry (I think; maybe it was DC Fontana) once said that a psychic link of some sort is involved along with the physical contact, and if so, it would follow that only humans with a Vulcan’s Katra could do the nerve pinch. However, Data learned it from Spock, so it would appear that this is not so.

        This begs the question of why all future Federation security types don’t learn the Vulcan nerve pinch as a matter of course. It’s damned efficient.

        • fiziko says:

          Re: We don’t discuss it with outsiders

          This begs the question of why all future Federation security types don’t learn the Vulcan nerve pinch as a matter of course. It’s damned efficient.

          Kirk tried to learn it, but couldn’t. I suspect that the human hand isn’t strong enough to cut off the nerves as necessary. Worf may have been able to learn it, but as a Klingon, he would choose not to use it. (Klingons tend to use “scream and leap” tactics instead of stealth when given the choice.)

        • Kaki says:

          Re: We don’t discuss it with outsiders

          However, Data learned it from Spock, so it would appear that this is not so.

          Data probably adjusted some internal power supply to provide a little jolt to the nerves in question.

Comments are closed.