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Lt. Commander
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 120
# 3 Broken Bow, Review Part 2
01-30-2010, 10:56 PM
Star Trek: Enterprise
Season One, Episodes 1-2: Broken Bow
The Klingon Klaang at Starfleet Medical. The Vulcans want to let him die, while Archer wants to return him to the Klingon Empire.

Part Two

The journey to Qo'noS is not an easy one. The race that was following Klaang in Broken Bow continue to pursue the Enterprise - and it is apparent they can match Enterprises Warp-5 engine (though technically at the beginning of their journey the are travelling at Warp 4.5). Hoshi Sato tries to question a delirious Klaang, but during the questioning, the Suliban transport troops aboard the Enterprise and kidnap Klaang. Archer was able to kill one of the Suliban during the fight, and Doctor Phlox examined the body to discover extensive genetic modifications. Thanks to Hoshi they learn that Klaang was visiting a planet called Rigel X before his crash-landing on Earth and that he had received something that he was taking back to Qo'noS there. Captain Archer decides to set a course for RIgel X and this introduces the crew to their first alien community. Unfortunately, Rigel X is a hotbed of "scum and villainy" and isn't the best example of alien culture. It does have hot, almost naked alien women who dance and catch butteflies with their long tongues (and I do mean long), so that's a plus especially for Trip and Malcolm.

As they explore the deeper areas of the trade complex, Archer and T'Pol are captured by Suliban. However, after meeting with their leader, a female Suliban called Sarin, Archer finds out that there is a lot more going on then both he and Starfleet knew - events that could impact the entire quadrant. The Suliban leadership, known as the Cabal are getting their orders from a shadowy figure from the future - Sarin used to be on the Cabal but she did not like what was she was seeing and now is actively opposing them. Captain Archer learns that there is something going on known as the Temporal Cold War.

Note: Some Star Trek fans hate the Temporal Cold War. I'm the opposite - I usually hate time travel episodes, or rather dislike them, but as I've gotten used to watching Star Trek, I've also gotten used to time travel. Most time travel episodes are single episode events, or two-parters, but what I love about the Temporal Cold War is that its a big event that lasts through the entire show! It also answers a lot of the questions that are brought up due to continuity discrepancies... if history is tweaked a little bit, it could easily be because of this War. Some evidence points to the shadowy figure using the Suliban to be a Romulan (another important race we'll discuss in the future!), which would make sense. Throwing the galaxy into chaos would make perfect sense for a Romulan, and other evidence points out that if there were a 5th season of Enterprise it would have dealt with the Earth/Romulan war and the shadowy figure would have been revealed as being an important player in forcing a confrontation.

Sarin tells Archer of an imminent Klingon Civil War that could throw the quadrant into chaos and that the instrument of the civil war is the Cabal. Klaang was carrying documents that would bring an end to the conflict and stop a civil war from happening and that it was very important to find the Klingon and return him to Qo'nos. An attack by the Cabal disrupts their meeting and they flee toward the shuttlepod - unfortunately Sarin dies on the way, shot in the back by the Cabal. The next combat sequence is really awesome, as they fight their way out and into a snowstorm. They have to find their shuttle in the middle of blaster fire, and Captain Archer saves T'Pol's life as she is thrown far by the errant blast of a launching alien ship. In their escape Archer is also shot, and T'Pol quickly takes over.

Note: An interesting fact that I've never seen talked about in detail - Archer dreams and sees himself on the beach as a child with his dad, testing out the model he was building at the very beginning. It launches into the air and quickly hits the sand. We then see T'Pol watching them and Henry Archer tells his son he "can't be afraid of the wind." Everyone seems to think this is just a dream - but we all know the long lifespans of the Vulcans. I believe that T'Pol really DID see Archer on the beach when Archer was still a child - that this event DID occur, but Archer hadn't ever thought about it and this was his subconscious bringing it up. He also never mentioned it again, meaning just like most dreams, he forgot about it again.

When Archer wakes up, he half expects that the Enterprise is heading back toward Earth, having given up on its mission with T'Pol in charge but is pleasantly surprised when T'Pol replies that they are continuing the mission as per Captain's orders and that they are tracking a Suliban ship that launched from Rigel X. This leads them to a gas giant planet. The Suliban ship is nowhere to be seen, but a spectral analysis shows the warp trails of several vessels entering the cloud. Polarizing the hull plating, they laid in a pursuit course into the gas giant.

Note: At this point in time Starfleet did not have shields. Their technology included the ability to polarize the hull plate, which strengthened it against damage. A far cry from shields, polorized hull plating was still equal to or better then what a lot of races had in space - plus, I LOVED the idea of Starfleet having to use a technology that was not as advanced as shields - the same way they had Phase Cannons as opposed to Phasers and Spacial Torpedoes instead of Photon Torpedoes.

The Enterprise didn't have to travel far to discover a Suliban Helix - an impressive structure made up of thousands of cell ships (small one man Suliban ships that can interlock together) connected to a central base.

A lot of "original Trekkers/Trekkies" don't really seem to like the new races like the Suliban but I think they are a very interesting addition to the Star Trek mix, as are the Xindi which we will see in a later season. While I like the race, I hate some aspects of their ships. The cell ships are a neat idea but as later episodes will attest to they can go warp speed and keep up with the Enterprise... excuse me? Not only is a cell ship lacking any warp nacelles, its smaller then a shuttlepod so I find it hard to believe that they can reach warp 5. Perhaps they've gotten a "boost" from their associate from the future, who knows - but I still don't like ship designs that lack nacelles which has been an important part of Star Trek since it was conceived, or at the very least a large engine room placed apart from the crew (as warp speed creates a field that is dangerous to living beings around the warp engines). Anyway, they scan the Helix and discover a single Klingon signature - Klaang is very much alive and within the Suliban base!

In a very awesome space sequence, the Enterprise dives closer to the Helix and some cell ships and using its Grappler (another precursor to the Tractor Beam which Vulcan ships already have but a technology they aren't sharing). Capturing the ship, Archer and Trip prepare to use it to infiltrate the Helix. Malcolm gives them two things, a magnetic device that would be used to throw the Suliban into a chaotic frenzy, and two phase pistols... the latest Federation weapon, and again the precursor to what? That's right... phasers! Trust me though, Phase Pistols rock.

Leaving T'Pol in charge of the ship, Archer and Trip infiltrate the Helix in the captured Cell Ship and after surreptitiously moving about the giant structure, they follow their scanner and find the lone Klingon bio signal. Sure enough, they find Klaang. Freeing the giant Klingon they make their escape. Alerted to the escape attempt, the Suliban try to stop them. The initial confrontation ends with many Suliban casualities, but more are on the way. Archer convinces Trip to take Klaang on the Cell Ship and return to Enterprise, and come back for him - and as much as he doesn't want to Trip follows his Captain's orders. As their Cell Ship breaks free, Archer activates the Gravity Device Malcolm gave them.

Suddenly, all the Cell Ships lose their magnetic grip on the Helix and begin to break away, drifting apart in all directions. Complete chaos ensues as Trip escapes with Klaang! As Trip successfully reaches Enterprise, Captain Archer has been making his way through the Helix and finds himself in what I believe is some sort of Temporal room. It connects the present with the future, and everything acts out of sync with proper time and space while in there (later episodes they remove this effect - I guess they either didn't like it or it took too much time to process the spacial effects. I kinda liked it but I could see that it could get annoying after a while). Anyway, the leader of the Cabal, Silik, attacks Archer and they fight. The fight is brutal, and at the last second Silik opens fire on Archer as the Captain is running for the door - and a Star Trek mainstay makes it's first appearance!

In a blinding flash of energy, Enterprise activates its transporter and Archer is transported out of the Helix! What an awesome scene - and one of the few examples you'll see of human transport in Star Trek: Enterprise. Again, because transporter technology is so new - they only use it when it is a last resort. For most of the show you will see them using a Shuttlepod, which is another thing I really like about the show. Anyway, a desperation maneuver works as the Enterprise moved in close to the Helix to transport Archer aboard and now pulled back away, trying to escape from the gas cloud with Cell Ships in close pursuit. They break out of the gas giant and go to warp.