Enterprise Review: “Singularity”

And you thought Trek fans were obsessive!

Enterprise LogoSingularity

 

Cast & Crew

Director: Patrick Norris
Written By: Chris Black

Starring
Scott Bakula as Captain
Jonathan Archer
Connor Trinneer as Chief
Engineer Charles 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
Matthew Kaminsky as Cunningham

Airdate Information

Originally Aired: Nov. 20, 2002
Season: Two
Episode: Nine
Production: 035

SingularityWhat
Happened

On a “typical” day on Enterprise, the crew finds their routine tasks
turn into uncharacteristically strange obsessions over trivial matters. The
crew’s increasingly erratic and often humorous behavior includes: Archer’s preoccupation
with writing the preface of a biography about his dad; Trip’s fixation on adjusting
the Captain’s chair to perfection; Hoshi’s obsession with her cooking; and Reed’s
concern with a Tactical Alert.

Review

A little humor this time around and, by and large, it works. It’s kinda fun
to watch the crew go OCD on stupid little things. It makes them a little bit
more human and realistic. It was also nice to see the whole crew, rather than
just a small fragment of it.

High Point

“Reed Alert.” Hmm.

Low Point

Archer:: “Could you read it when I’m done?”
T’Pol: “I’d be happy to.”

Hey, Star Trek writers: Pay closer attention! This is a stupid mistake.

The Scores

Originality: Sure it’s not too original, shades of Amok Time here, but at least
they took a fun tack with making the crew obsessive rather than horny/goofy/violent.
5 out 6.

Effects: Beautiful shots of a trinary star system and the debris field looked
pretty cool too. 5 out of 6.

Story: It’s an important piece in the road, just not handled well. 4 out of
6.

Acting: It’s obvious several of the cast enjoyed making this episode and it
shows in their portrayals. 4 out of 6.

Emotional Response: It felt good to laugh a bit at our intrepid adventurers.
Certainly a nice break from the last few episodes. 4 out of 6.

Production: Nice new set for the galley. Other than that, it’s just the same
stuff. Not that it’s a criticism, the Enterprise set is awesome. 4 out
of 6.

Overall: I truly enjoyed this one. Maybe it was really good, maybe it just
didn’t suck heinous rocks. 4 out of 6.

Total: 24 out of 42

Episode Media

From StarTrek.com

Next Time on Enterprise (Nov. 27, 2002)

Next Time on EnterpriseVanishing
Point

Following her first experience in the transporter, a series of eerie events
leads Hoshi to question whether she is the same person. Feeling fearful and
helpless, Hoshi becomes unsure of herself wondering if she is losing her mind,
or if the transporter has somehow changed her, or if there is an alien threat
behind all of these bizarre happenings suddenly taking place.

TheAngrymob

19 replies on “Enterprise Review: “Singularity””

  1. GusherJizmac says:

    Vulcan dialogue

    Archer:: “Could you read it when I’m done?”
    T’Pol: “I’d be happy to.”

    Hey, Star Trek writers: Pay closer attention! This is a stupid mistake.

    There are several explanations, two of which would be that it’s a standard English phrase with a meaning slightly different than that which it’s individual words convey, and that T’Pol was just trying to fit in culturaly with the crew. Or, she’s spending too much time with humans and developing some bad, non-vulcan habits.

  2. rickyjames says:

    Only One Thing Is Worse…
    …than making up Enterprise scripts as straight knock-offs of classic movies like we’ve seen done in the last three eps with Seven Saumeri, Apocolypse Now and Cool Hand Luke. And that thing is to make YET ANOTHER remake of “The Naked Time / The Naked Now” or whatever you want to call it. Is this what you were reeferring to in the review as Amok Time above, perhaps? In Amok Time Spock (tries to) get married. In Naked Time environmental factors on Enterprise NCC-1701 makes everybody go nuts, O’Reilly locks out the bridge controls, and unless Sulu puts his shirt back on and stops swordfighting, Enterprise is gonna crash into an asteroid or planet breaking up or something . In Naked Now, environmental factors on Enterprise D makes everybody go nuts, Tasha and Data get it on and I’m pretty sure there was a threat of Enterprise crashing into something. In Singularity environmental factors on Enterprise NX-01 makes everybody go nuts…etc etc.

    I actually agree the “red alert” wink-wink nudge-nudge was the high point of this ep, and that’s not saying much…it’s pretty sad.

    OK, this ep pretty much does it for me with Enterprise unless they finally show Chef and it’s Shaft, and he’s one mean mother…(watch yo mouth! And if you don’t get THAT classic movie allusion, here’s a hint…South Park). I’m officially switching my primary SF allegence to Firefly, for as long as THAT lasts…

  3. Daemonik says:

    Isn’t it sad…
    Isn’t it sad that we have to ask ourselves “Was this a good episode? Or did it just suck less than all the others?”

    Frankly, when you’re segmenting the quality of a show based on episodes NOT sucking, then something is seriously eff’d up.

  4. scharkalvin says:

    Amok Time, etc
    Yeah the plot was a little familar. But it worked. Funny how Vulcans always seem to be imune to everything and all other species come down with the bug. Also that the Vulcan nerve pinch seems to work on EVERYBODY, and T’Pol is good at it.

    Now how about an episode where they run into Harcourt Fenton Mudd’s
    grandfather?

    • Eldhrin says:

      Re: Amok Time, etc

      Yeah the plot was a little familar. But it worked. Funny how Vulcans always seem to be imune to everything and all other species come down with the bug. Also that the Vulcan nerve pinch seems to work on EVERYBODY, and T’Pol is good at it.

      Now how about an episode where they run into Harcourt Fenton Mudd’s
      grandfather?

      I’ve been thinking about this a bit recently, and I’ve come to the conclusion that the Vulcan nerve pinch must involve use of their telepathic abilities. After all, there’s no guarentee nerves will be running in the same places in all humanoid species – but they do all seem to have spinal chords. It could be that the hand position is simply to get physical contact with a part of the body close to the spinal chord and the base of the brain, from where a telepathic wham can be delivered.

      • Mr. Vapor says:

        Re: Amok Time, etc

        I’ve been thinking about this a bit recently, and I’ve come to the conclusion that the Vulcan nerve pinch must involve use of their telepathic abilities. After all, there’s no guarentee nerves will be running in the same places in all humanoid species – but they do all seem to have spinal chords. It could be that the hand position is simply to get physical contact with a part of the body close to the spinal chord and the base of the brain, from where a telepathic wham can be delivered.

        Established precedent in TNG shows that it is not the case, Data learned the nerve pinch from Spock in the episode Unification Part II. And Spock claims he tried to teach it to Captain Kirk in one of the original episodes (The Omega Glory? I really don’t remember). One would think he wouldn’t try to teach it to Kirk if it required Vulcan Mysticism.

        Not that those in charge of Star Trek today care anything about continuity. By the end of Enterprise’s run, the ability to do a vulcan nerve pinch will directly correlate to the size of T’Pols Breasts. (ok yeah, so I’m a little bitter :)

  5. SciFi0964 says:

    One among many
    Once again the viewer is asked to watch an old story with a very slight twist; entering a star system with an unusual make up that affects the behavior of the crew. In past shows of Trek the crew is subjected to abnormal behavior due to fields generated by the star systems unusual make up. With the two old episodes mentioned earlier, it was a gravitational field that affected the brains. This time it was a specific radiation that affected just one part of the brain. Wow. (coff,coff) |[

    While I did enjoy most of the characters particular obsessions; especially Yoshi’s barking agrilly about the soup. I was dissapointed at the familiarity of the plot.

    Yes, one can point out minor changes. It was radiation and not gravitational forces that forced the behavior. The Vulcan is somehow immune to this radiation. In the end, however, I saw a rehashed idea played out. Unoriginal and unimpressive.

    With stories such as this I wonder what exactly are the requirements of a screen writer of Star Trek; Perhaps a knowledge of classical TV shows & movies?

    • rickyjames says:

      Re: One among many
      Seems I’m not done ranting about this – guess it bugs me more than I thought to give up on Enterprise. OK, so it’s a recycled plot. If they’re gonna do it, they ought to do it right, and they didn’t. They kept the “Enterprise is in danger of crashing” aspect which is BORING since it aint gonna happen (unless its in a movie and there’s a cat that can be shown to survive in the wreckage) and would be the EASIEST thing to change. They left out the “expression of innermost feelings” aspect that actually made this plot interesting and was used by TOS and NG as a hit-you-over-the-head into to the characters. The original versions on TOS and NG had a great scene that showed Spock really does have emotions, finding out Sulu was a swashbuckler at heart was basically the only character development done on his character in all of TOS, and we learn that Data was a “fully functional” android and that Tasha was inherently lonely. What did we learn about the true character of any of the NX-01 crew? Only that Hoshi has a favorite Japanese soup. Opportunity lost, in my book.

      • bryce says:

        Re: One among many

        What did we learn about the true character of any of the
        NX-01 crew? Only that Hoshi has a favorite Japanese soup.
        Opportunity lost, in my book.

        I actually kind of liked this episode, mostly due to
        the “red alert” and clear tie-ins with TOS. I was half
        expecting the “fixed” captain’s chair to turn out to be
        Kirk’s box-of-a-chair. :-)

        We may not have learned much “true character” types of
        things about the crew, but there definitely were some new
        character developments.

        Regarding the plot recycling/derivation, this has
        *always* been a big trait of ST; I suspect even with TOS
        you could find traces of repetition from other shows
        (perhaps westerns) it drew from. I kind of consider it
        on the same level as remakes of old plays (e.g., Othello
        retold as a western, etc.)

        So I expect we’re going to get the “alien-influenced
        crew-member takes over the ship” plot, the “crew has to
        mutiny against the captain, but for a good reason” plot,
        “strange alien appears to be destroying the Enterprise,
        but really it’s just a strange form of life and means no
        harm, and is just hungry|lonely|confused|lost”, etc.

        Also, is it just me, or with the promo for the next
        ep is it starting to seem like this this crew is a bit
        “clothing challenged”? ;-)

        • vanyel says:

          Re: One among many

          I actually kind of liked this episode, mostly due to
          the “red alert” and clear tie-ins with TOS. I was half
          expecting the “fixed” captain’s chair to turn out to be
          Kirk’s box-of-a-chair. :-)

          Same here ;-) One thing that struck me at the end was: “there’s a *lot* of present day engineers that need to learn Trip’s lesson, and not just hardware engineers”

          But even though it had its fun aspects, overall I thought it was boring and clearly the Naked Time for this series.

        • scharkalvin says:

          Re: One among many
          I suspect even with TOS
          you could find traces of repetition from other shows
          (perhaps westerns) it drew from.

          Why not if it works. One of TOS best shows was a remake of a famous
          war movie. “The Balance of Terror” which introduced the Romulans was
          a re-telling of “The Enemy Below”. But that episode was very well written and acted. Recycling a plot isn’t a bad thing, when done well.

  6. is says:

    could-a been better, but…
    I liked it. This episode was “lighter” than the others and not as poorly written. There are obvious Trek items like the neck pinch and the use of english, but those are common as grass on a hill in Trek and I don’t consider them a problem.

    Vulcan neck piches always work on everyone. Lets face it, it’s totally unrealistic, but it’s TV and just makes the show feel like Trek.

    The english thing I’d say is just a simple matter of the way phrases gain different meanings over time. It happens very often and very quickly in our culture now, imagine 200+ years into the future.
    Maybe we should call it engrish?

    I still think that Trek could go original, but hey… we can’t expect that. One good way to do something different would be to crash the ship, lose a few unimportant crew members (non-regulars), and stay wrecked on a planet/asteroid for a few weeks.

    • GrimSean says:

      Re: could-a been better, but…

      I still think that Trek could go original, but hey… we can’t expect that. One good way to do something different would be to crash the ship, lose a few unimportant crew members (non-regulars), and stay wrecked on a planet/asteroid for a few weeks.

      I’m pretty sure Deep Space 9 did that for a few shows, so yet again we would have a ‘stolen’ plot. Mabye instead they could be thrown to the other side of the galaxy, and have to work their way home…er…no… that would probably suck too.

  7. rfs says:

    Gender bias
    Was I the only one disappointed by the fact that while the men got obsessed with things pertaining to their jobs (except Archer), the only obsessive woman shown, Hoshi, was worried about her performance in the kitchen? Any way I look at it, it seems sexist. Is the only way to flesh out a female character to expose her feminine side? These writers seem to think so…

    • SciFi0964 says:

      Re: Gender bias

      Was I the only one disappointed by the fact that while the men got obsessed with things pertaining to their jobs (except Archer), the only obsessive woman shown, Hoshi, was worried about her performance in the kitchen? Any way I look at it, it seems sexist. Is the only way to flesh out a female character to expose her feminine side? These writers seem to think so…

      I am not sure that Hoshi’s activity in the kitchen was a sexist thing. True, they could have had her obsessed with the proper syntax of a language she was studying, or get obsessed about one of her many, slightly irritating list of fears she displays. With respect, I suggest one event does not espouse an attitude, many do.

      The master of commications has however been shown as a poster child for fear and uncertainty. That it happen to a female character may suggest such a thing except the other regular female character shows less emotional reaction. In fact she was immune. Would that not balance?

  8. Jethro says:

    I’m surprised they didn’t call it “The Naked Then”
    Yup, same old plot, without the Red Thing passing between people.

    Of course, the ‘newer’ Trek ones affected Vulcans, and heck, Androids.

    Despite all that, I did find myself laughing occasionally.

  9. TechnoGirl says:

    Why wait for the next Episode Thread? – Discuss the suckiness NOW !!
    It was all just a dream ??
    WTF ? !!!

    Could it ****POSSIBLY******** suck any MORE ???

    • fiziko says:

      Re: Why wait for the next Episode Thread? – Discuss the suckiness NOW !!

      It was all just a dream ??
      WTF ? !!!

      Could it ****POSSIBLY******** suck any MORE ???

      I just watched it on tape. I should have turned it off during the last commercial. It still would have felt like a ripoff of the TNG episode (The Next Phase, if memory serves) but at least it would have been salvagable.

  10. suspend_disbelief says:

    O/C behavior
    Hey, these are great reviews, I really enjoy them.

    Perhaps I’m being a little O/C myself…but I couldn’t let this go:

    5 + 5 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 + 4 = 30

    If this was just a ploy to get one more person to create a user id, it worked :)

Comments are closed.