View Single Post
Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 2 Broken Bow, Review Part 1
01-30-2010, 10:56 PM
Star Trek: Enterprise
Season One, Episodes 1-2: Broken Bow
The beginning of the dream that will turn into the Federation. The NX-01 leaves drydock for the Klingon homeworld...

Episode 1-2 Synopsis (I will include a synopsis for each episode to get people interested): Starfleet wants to launch their first Warp-5 starship. An incendent on Earth regarding an accidental shooting of a Klaang the Klingon serves as the perfect excuse to launch the Enterprise, Starfleet's untested flagship and return Klaang to Qo'noS, the homeworld of the Klingon Empire. Lots and lots of action ensues including: the kidnap of Klaang by the Suliban, the recovery of Klaang by the crew of the Enterprise, lots of zap-zap phase pistol shooting and thanks to the Enterprise - staving off a huge Klingon Civil War. Go Starfleet!!!

Part One

I will start with a discussion prior to the episode, and this deals specifically with Star Trek: Enterprise and how it alters canon. To some, this is a travesty and makes the show unwatchable. To me, its the continuing development of a 30+ year old franchise. For example, in the Original Series it mentions that the Earth/Romulan war was fought at long distances, using nuclear weapons. It was a bloody conflict, but it ended with a peace accord that created the Neutral Zone and during the whole war neither side saw the others face. If Star Trek: Enterprise had a 5th season, it would have dealt with the Earth/Romulan war, but because it didn't they are writing "season 5" as a series of books that I am reading - and the conflict is no longer simply "two sides hurling nukes at each other" but much more detailed, filled with close range starship combat and the drama you come to expect. What I'm trying to say is that some people will dislike anything that was made after Roddenberry (the creator of Star Trek), and that includes Deep Space 9, Voyager and especially Enterprise. I do not feel this way - I embrace the whole franchise! So without any further adieu, episodes One and Two of Star Trek: Enterprise!

Our adventure starts out in the year 2121 with a young child putting together a model of a starship. This is our protagonist, Jonathan Archer as a child. He is with his father, Henry Archer who is one of the pioneers of Earth's Warp program. We find out that the Vulcan's have been on Earth for quite some time (since a pioneer named Zefram Cochrane activated Earth's first Warp Engine in 2063 and attracted the attention of the advanced and warp-capable Vulcans) and have been helping us build our first Warp 5 Engine, though by withholding a lot of information our progress has been slow. Henry doesn't know why the Vulcan's are holding back information but believes it must be for a good reason. Even though he's a child, Jonathan disagrees and his disagreement with the Vulcan's will last long into his adulthood.

With that, the story jumps thirty years into the future (though with Scott Bakula as Archer it should probably have been forty years - Archer is 39 and Bakula is 50ish) and the year 2151. The event that pushes us into space starts on our own homeworld, but the players are very much alien. We see a long-haired alien with a ridged forehead running through a field in Broken Bow, Oklahoma. For those of you who don't know anything about Star Trek, this is a Klingon and they play a rather big part in Star Trek (especially in The Next Generation and Deep Space 9). He is being pursued by two other aliens known as Suliban (who make their first appearance in Star Trek). The Klingon (Klaang) outsmarts his opponents but not the human farmer who shoots the Klingon in the chest with a plasma rifle.

Like all good Star Trek pilots, we see the Captain and his chief engineer on a shuttlepod checking out the first shots of the Enterprise. As a Star Trek fan I must say the NX-01 is a beautiful ship. You can see that it's smaller then any of the other Enterprises which makes sense because its the earliest model. The scene is nowhere as beautiful as the panorama of the Enterprise in Star Trek: The Motion Picture (one of its redeeming qualities) but it's adequate.

Rushed to Starfleet medical, Klaang is put on life support. His fate becomes a heated discussion between Starfleet officers and the Vulcan ambassadors (Vulcans are another important race in Star Trek. Their most prominant feature is pointed ears and they believe in the pursuit of logic. What I really LOVE about Star Trek: Enterprise but is a heated topic is how the Vulcans are portrayed on the show - these aren't the completely logical creatures we see in the Original Series. They embrace logic but hide emotions that spill out from time to time. I actually prefer this version of the Vulcans, and in my opinion in makes sense that like every race they are still developing). The Vulcans want the humans to take Klaang off of life support and let him die, while Captain Jonathan Archer (now an adult) wants to use this incident as a reason to finally launch their first Warp-5 starship. Apparently humanity has been in space for a while now, but until the creation of this Warp-5 reactor, they had been travelling at Warp 2 which made a trip that would take weeks turn into a trip that took years (and most of those ships were simple cargo-haulers). After a heated debate, Archer perseveres and gets the nod - Archer will leave Earth and take Klaang back to the Klingon Homeworld of Qo'noS. The Vulcans are none to happy but the decision has been made and humanity is about to take a big step forward!

This is where we meet our crew - the crew of the starship Enterprise!


Captain Jonathan Archer: He's a bit disgruntled a the way the Vulcans treated humanity, holding back the secret of faster Warp technology for an entire century. He's kind of bitter because his father passed away before the Warp-5 engine became a reality and he blames the Vulcans. As he says in the very first episode: "I've listened to you Vulcans tell us what NOT to do my entire life. I watched my father work his ass off while your scientists held back just enough information to keep him from succeeding. He deserved to see this launch. You Vulcans have a lifespan of 200 years, we don't." He has the weight of the world on his shoulders - unlike the captain's in TOS, TNG, DS9 and Voyager he is traveling into a completely alien universe. His mission will determine the fate of Starfleet. Is humanity ready to take to the stars? The Vulcans don't think so.

Commander Charles Tucker the 3rd, or Trip: One of Archer's best friends, Trip is an amazing engineer and he treats the Warp-5 engine like his baby. A very likable character, Trip is featured in a many of the episodes along with Captain Archer. Though he tries to portray himself as serious, he often fails and is the center of a lot of comedy.

Sub Commander T'Pol: She is the Vulcan officer assigned to the Enterprise. Apparently, the Vulcans are fairly adamant about having one of their own on Earth's first foray into space. As the series progresses we see her slowly evolve - gaining an understanding of human beings and their nature - and how emotions can sometimes work to our advantage. She is also rather hot.

Lieutenant Malcolm Reed: The senior armory officer aboard Enterprise, Malcolm believes in the philosophy of "might makes right" and wants the Enterprise to always be prepared for any sort of engagement with hostile vessels. Unfortunately, he will find out soon enough that there are plenty of races out there with better weapons and shielding then the Earth's first Warp-5 starship. Thankfully, the Enterprise slowly is refitted with more powerful weapons (Phase Canons, which weren't even installed when they left space dock, eventually were upgraded to Phasers and Spacial Torpedoes were eventually upgraded to Photon Torpedoes). Always one to jump into a situation, he slowly learns that sometimes you have to take your time and learn more about what's going on.

Ensign Hoshi Sato: She is also a very attractive Asian female and a natural linguist. The Universal Translator still has a lot of rough edges and sometimes fails to translate languages and it is Hoshi's job to figure out what's going on and open up dialogues. Even when the Translator begins to work properly, she is still a very vital member of the crew and their communications officer.

Ensign Travis Mayweather: Though he is not the center of a lot of episodes, he is an exceptional pilot and saves the Enterprise on multiple occasions with his skill. A "space boomer" his family travelled the Galaxy for years on the old Warp 2 cargo haulers which allowed Travis to experience a lot of things the rest of the crew hadn't experienced yet. However, most of his life was spent on the hauler because of the months (or even years) it took to travel between worlds.

Doctor Phlox: Everyone will have their own opinion but to me Phlox is the best Doctor they've had in a Star Trek TV show. His character is dynamic and the actor plays the part like he was born to play a Denobulan (the alien race Phlox belongs to). He is part of the Interspecies Medical Exchange program, and has been on Earth for a while and was the doctor working on Klaang, the wounded Klingon. Archer sees him and asks if he would take an assignment on Enterprise. Phlox agrees, and the rest is history.

This is the end of part one of the review of Broken Bow. Stay tune for part 2!