Enterprise Review: “Babel One”

Break out the blue flags people. The Federation’s coming to town!

Babel One

Cast & Crew

Director: David Straiton
Written By: Mike Sussman & Andre Bormanis

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
Jeffrey Combs as Shran
Lee Arenberg as Gral (Tellarite)
Brian Thompson as Valdore
J. Michael Flynn as Nijil
Molly Brink as Talas
Kevin Brief as Naarg
Jermaine Soto as Maco Crewman

Episode Information

Originally Aired: January 28, 2004
Season: Four
Episode: Twelve
Production: 088

What Happened

Ordered to transport a delegation of argumentative Tellarites to a peace conference with the blue-skinned Andorians, Archer and the crew find themselves drawn into a confusing, dangerous situation when a secret Romulan vessel begins attacking ships on all sides, including Enterprise.

Review

Finally. The origins of the Federation at long last. So far so good, and next week looks even better.

High Point

While bonus points go to having a MACO that didn’t just give in to hormones, the actual high point goes to the overall concept of forming the Federation. This is what the show should have been about…FOUR YEARS AGO!

Low Point

Was anyone surprised to find out the ship was a drone?

The Scores

Originality: Romulans stirring up trouble in disguise. Pretty sure we’ve seen that before. Still it’s consistant with their personality and it’s as good a plot as any to get the four charter members to work together. 4 out of 6.

Effects: That’s one nasty looking ship. 5 out of 6.

Story: A decent story, it just needs a little more emphasis on the Tellarites, up to now they’re a big blank culturally. 4 out of 6.

Acting: Jeffrey Combs is a big part of what makes this show fun. 5 out of 6.

Emotional Response: I’m just excited to see where this is going. 4 out of 6.

Production: Great sets and shots. 4 out of 6

Overall: A fantastic start to, what I hope will be, a very good story arc. 4 out of 6.

Total: 30 out of 42

Next Week on Enterprise (January 28, 2004)

United

Trapped aboard a mysterious drone ship that’s been terrorizing the region, Trip and Malcolm work to outwit the Romulans, who are piloting the vessel via remote control, in order to save their own lives and stop the feuding Andorians and Tellarites from going to war.

Additional Notes and Comments

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

TheAngrymob

17 replies on “Enterprise Review: “Babel One””

  1. theangrymob says:

    Can you tell…,
    …I wrote the review before I found out the show was cancelled? So much hope. How naiive of me…

  2. AveryRegier says:

    torrents?
    Anyone know where to find torrents for Enterprise now? All of my previous haunts have been shut down, such as tvtorrents.net.

    • Babbster says:

      Re: torrents?

      Anyone know where to find torrents for Enterprise now? All of my previous haunts have been shut down, such as tvtorrents.net.

      I would think it’s probably a good idea to keep B42 free of these kinds of links/requests since, as you say, so many of those kinds of sites are being shut down. Drop this person a line if you’re interested in his suggestions on how to avoid “mistakes” of this type.

  3. Trekkie says:

    While I enjoyed it, very much…
    ….I’m surprised no mention of the paralell to Journey to Babel was mentioned because once again we
    are transporting people to an important conference and someone is shooting
    at the ship with an unknow type ship.

    Seemed Similar, though different. They used the same area name even…

    • Timeshredder says:

      Hopeless geekery

      On another note, I often wished Trek had made its aliens more alien. TOS nodded in that direction, but as the various series went on (not just Enterprise), most aliens turned out to be very much like us.

      Consider the Andorians. Well, they are blue, and they might not have ears… Nope, they have ears. Then Data lets it slip that they mate in fours.

      That fact never gets mentioned again (except, I’m told, in some of the novels). They seemed to come in male and female, and Enterprise establishes that this is so. Perhaps they have two sexes, but mate in fours…. Well, Enterprise appears to contradict that, too. Turns out they’re just like us, just blue and a little more irritable.

      Still, this season was better than 1, and what I watched of 2 and 3.

      • valen1260 says:

        Re: Hopeless geekery

        I often wished Trek had made its aliens more alien.

        Roddenberry wouldn’t have makeup obscuring actors’ faces. While that still leaves culural points to the writers’ imaginations, the physical appearance has always been rather limited. In contrast, look at some of the lesser-species on “Babylon 5” (N’grath comes to mind) and “Farscape”.

        But, one thing Trek has done that few, if any, other mass-media SF has done is come up with what I thought was a plausible, interesting reason for such similar alien species. See TNG episode “The Chase”.

      • Babbster says:

        Re: Hopeless geekery
        On Andorian reproduction: In the DS9 followup novels I’ve read, they did a lot about this aspect of Andorians without getting into the “nitty gritty,” so to speak. Yes, they reproduce in fours. Yes, they come in two sexes that are recognizable by humans as male female – though things are a LITTLE bit more complicated in that Andorians themselves recognize four true genders. Yes, they do tend to pair off and are really only in their “foursome” in order to do the actual reproduction and then possibly to raise the child(ren) – it’s probably pretty rare for all four Andorians to act “married” in the human sense.

        In other words, Andorian reproduction is just a good old-fashioned bitch-and-a-half. :)

  4. is says:

    good ep.
    typical network… they let two babboons run the show into the ground and then give one good guy a year or less to fix it…

    Why is it that the fans see the idiots long before the network sees them? If we know what we want, why doesn’t a network ask us and do it? never ceases to amaze me.

  5. valen1260 says:

    questionable fictional physics

    If the drone lacks the inertial dampers to keep Tripp and Reed from being thrown around, what keeps them (and the ship) from being completely destroyed when jumping to warp? I would think there is no “in-between” IDS. What would be the point?

    • babasyzygy says:

      Re: questionable fictional physics

      If the drone lacks the inertial dampers to keep Tripp
      and Reed from being thrown around, what keeps them (and the ship) from
      being completely destroyed when jumping to warp? I would think there is no
      “in-between” IDS. What would be the point?

      Did you miss the dialog just before, where the Romulans turn off the intertial
      dampeners?

      • valen1260 says:

        Re: questionable fictional physics

        Did you miss the dialog just before, where the Romulans turn off the intertial
        dampeners?

        Not having them at all or having them disabled are equivalent. The bottom line is NOTHING existed to keep everything from being destroyed when the ship jumped to warp to pursue Enterprise.

  6. valen1260 says:

    more’s the pity

    High Point

    While bonus points go to having a MACO that didn’t just give in to hormones…

    It’s a shame that even though he didn’t jump right in bed with Talas, Shran still got the drop on him. So much for discipline.

    • pdavis says:

      Re: more’s the pity

      It’s a shame that even though he didn’t jump right in bed with Talas, Shran still got the drop on him. So much for discipline.

      Actually Shran didn’t get the drop on him… went back to confirm it just now. The MACO hit Shran first knocking him down and then fought Talas for several seconds before she defeated him. It appears that they do have ears though.

  7. madhack says:

    The proto-cloak
    I also thought that the ship’s ability to disguise itself was an interesting take on the possible precursors to the cloaking device. One assumes that such things don’t simply develop in a vacuum… (no pun intended)

    I agree that it’s too bad Manny Coto won’t get more of a chance.

    • valen1260 says:

      Re: The proto-cloak

      I also thought that the ship’s ability to disguise itself was an interesting take on the possible precursors to the cloaking device. One assumes that such things don’t simply develop in a vacuum… (no pun intended)

      I thought the neural control center was also interesting, though that research seems to have been abandoned.

      • madhack says:

        Re: The proto-cloak

        I thought the neural control center was also interesting, though that research seems to have been abandoned.

        I also thought that was interesting, but I don’t think it really belongs on Enterprise, simply because it’s so far ahead of the technology we saw in the other series. If it were another race I’d be willing to accept the beg-off of “they discovered it was harmful to the pilot,” but since it’s the Romulans I somehow doubt they’d let that get in the way.

        I guess it hardly matters now, eh?

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