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Steve Likes to Curse
Writing, comics and random thoughts from really a rather vulgar man
Shit Trek 
Tuesday, August 14th, 2007 | 03:25 pm [commentary, humor, review, star trek, television]
Steve
Shit Trek
The Worst Star Trek Episodes Ever Made
 
Over the weekend was the big “official” Star Trek Convention in Las Vegas, highlighted by Leonard Nimoy and William Shatner taking the stage together to mutually masturbate one another before an adoring throng of Trekkies. How adoring? One of them who recapped the talk for StarTrek.com referred to them as the “gods who came to dinner.” I’m tellin’ ya. Add to the convention the new film being directed by J.J. Abrams for a 2008 release, ingeniously titled Star Trek, and 2007 being the 20th anniversary of the debut of Star Trek: The Next Generation in first-run syndication, and it strikes me as the perfect time to write a lengthy, quasi-humorous article on a Star Trek-related topic.
 
What really got me thinking about this was my recent purchase of the latest Fan Collective DVD box set released by Paramount, this one called Captain’s Log. I’ve gotten a few of the Fan Collectives over the last few months; they’re nice for people like me, who enjoy the occasional Star Trek show but are unwilling to make the equivalent of a mortgage payment to own a season’s worth of episodes from a television series that, in the case of the original Star Trek, has been out of production for nearly forty years. The Fan Collectives are priced around $30 and you get between ten and fifteen episodes from the various different series — still a rip-off, but a more affordable rip-off.
 
I thought it would be fun if, for the next Fan Collective, assuming there is one, they bundled together the worst episodes from among all the various Trek incarnations, then just sat back and watched to see how many people would drop $30 on a set that openly admits to containing the shittiest work ever done in the franchise. More than a few I’d wager. But which episodes would be included in my hypothetical Shit Trek box set? I have a few ideas below, arranged by series and in order of original airdate.
 
 
Star Trek
 
The original and some still say the best of all the Trek shows, this was also the least successful in its original run. Star Trek just barely lasted three seasons on NBC, and produced only 80 episodes (counting the unaired and seldom seen original pilot). Yet into those three years and 80 episodes, in between the “Amok Time”s and “City on the Edge of Forever”s, it managed to cram an impressive quantity of shit.
 
“Tomorrow is Yesterday.” Some would rank this one as one of the better episodes. I would not. This is the first time travel episode. The Enterprise is thrown into a time-warp by the gravity of an unseen black star and winds up orbiting Earth in the late 1960s. The ship is spotted by an Air Force pilot and when their tractor beam destroys his fighter plane exactly how Spock said it would, the pilot is beamed aboard. The crew spends the rest of the episode trying to erase any record of their visit to 20th century Earth, and trying to figure out what the hell to do with the pilot. The entire story is negated in the last five minutes when they decide to travel a little bit further back in time before returning to the future, beam the pilot back into himself (or something) before he encountered the Enterprise, then warp back into the future before anyone on Earth has a chance to spot them. None of the time travel stuff makes any sense, and even by the relatively low standards of Star Trek, the special effects are god-awful. I haven’t seen the remastered version, but I bet they remastered the fuck outta this one.
 
“The Changeling.” Captain Kirk and his gallant crew encounter an artificially intelligent advanced alien probe powerful enough to exterminate life on a planetary scale, yet so stupid it mistakes Kirk for its long-lost creator despite the fact that Kirk looks and acts nothing like the guy, and obviously has no idea what the probe is talking about. As if it wasn’t stupid enough watching Shatner and Nimoy forced to play scenes with the ridiculous looking Nomad, the top of which was nearly always positioned just above camera frame so we can’t see the stage-hand pulling it as it “floats” through the ship, the probe also kills and resurrects Scotty, and completely erases Uhura’s memory, which Dr. McCoy quickly solves by re-educating her with the ship’s library tapes. Funny how you wouldn’t expect a ship’s tape library to contain a complete record of everything that ever happened to Uhura, just in case a hostile alien probe were to reboot her brain. The dumbest part of all: Spock mind-melds with the fuckin’ thing. I bet Nimoy loved that one.
 
“Assignment: Earth.” Traveling back to the 1960s proved so much fun in “Tomorrow is Yesterday” that the Enterprise does it again, this time on purpose, to conduct historical research. Arriving on Earth in 1968, Kirk and Spock find themselves supporting characters in a completely different show, one centered on Gary Seven, intergalactic man of mystery. This episode was actually the pilot for an intended series about Gary Seven which never materialized. It may seem odd to try and launch a new series by incorporating its first episode into another series that almost no one watched. And it was. Though it’s unusual now, years ago it was common practice to launch a spin-off by airing the pilot as an episode of a popular series (for instance, over half the episodes of All in the Family were pilots for spin-offs). But why attempt a spin-off of Star Trek when the show was never highly rated during its original run? Because Gene Roddenberry was an idiot.
 
“Spock’s Brain.” No list of the shittiest Trek episodes could be complete without this one. Aliens steal Spock’s brain and use it to operate a computer that controls all the automatic functions of their planet. Thanks to a quirk in Vulcan physiology, Spock’s body is able to survive sans brain for 24 hours, giving Kirk and McCoy just enough time to attach a Rumble Pak to Spock’s head and walk him down to the planet by remote control so McCoy can hook himself up to a teaching machine and figure out how to un-remove Spock’s brain. When McCoy forgets the last few steps before finishing the surgery, Spock, his brain partially reattached, helpfully leads him through the rest of the operation. His marbles fully restored to his noggin, Spock sits up on the operating table and immediately launches into an obscure and convoluted anecdote about something or other, prompting the rest of the cast to erupt into phony “end of the episode” laughter. That’s our Spock!
 
“Requiem for Methuselah.” Searching for the antidote to an epidemic afflicting the crew, Kirk takes the Enterprise to a remote planet where the only inhabitants are a human calling himself Flint and his daughter Rayna, who turns out to be an android. Spock scans Flint with a tricorder and finds him to be over 6,000 years old, which Flint explains by revealing that he is immortal and has lived many lifetimes under many different names. Among the identities Flint has assumed during his life are: Alexander the Great, Leonardo DaVinci, Johannes Brahms, and King Solomon — who probably never existed — and Merlin and Methuselah — who definitely never existed. Somewhere in here android Rayna falls in love with Kirk, which causes her to short-circuit and die. Kirk, who knew her all of about ten minutes, is so broken up over her “death” that Spock is forced to use a mind-meld to make him forget about her before he can get his shit together enough to return to duty. This from the stone-cold motherfucker who once purposely let his girlfriend get run over by a truck in order to preserve the future. How times change.
 
 
Star Trek: The Next Generation
 
This series wound up being such a success and produced so many excellent shows that it’s easy to forget how much utter dogshit was made featuring Captain Picard, Commander Riker, Data and the rest. When you’re a fan and you’ve got episodes like “Darmok” or “Chain of Command” or “Tapestry” to remember fondly, it’s not often necessary to dwell on the shit that came out of the Next Generation years. But there was plenty of it.
 
“Hide and Q.” My pick for the worst episode of the incredibly awful first season, this features the second appearance of Q, who shows up to offer omnipotent power to Commander Riker. Skeptical at first, Riker eventually accepts the power, only to show himself unworthy of it by resurrecting Wesley after the little bastard is impaled through the back by an alien soldier. It was the second episode in three weeks to tease the death of Wesley without delivering, making this not only a poorly written and produced show, but a cruel one as well.
 
“The Child.” The second-season opener and the first of many, many shitty episodes to revolve around Deanna Troi. I’m not sure if I should blame Marina Sirtis for being a horrible actress, or blame the writers for consistently making Troi such a moron. Every other character on the series turned to her for advice, despite the fact that she was clearly the dumbest motherfucker on the ship. She is far and away my least favorite regular character from any of the Trek series (I don’t count Wesley as a regular since he — blissfully — disappeared for years at a time). Anyway, in this episode Troi is mysteriously impregnated by an alien being and gives birth to a child, Ian, who grows up and dies within a few days, apparently just for the hell of it. Meanwhile, Picard agrees to let Wesley, whose mother has transferred back to Earth, remain on the Enterprise, and assigns various members of the senior staff to take care of him, with Data seeing to his studies, Worf tucking him in, and Riker wiping his ass after he goes caca.  Nothing to like and lots to hate in this one.
 
“Tin Man.” Prick telepath Tam Elbrun comes aboard to attempt communication with a mysterious life-form called Tin Man, a one-of-a-kind creature orbiting a star that is about to go supernova. Tam spends the episode acting like a self-pitying dick, Marina Sirtis does some of the worst overacting of her career as Troi, and Picard looks pissed-off and miserable every second he’s on screen. Plus, just for shits and giggles, about halfway through some Romulans show up. Boring, nonsensical, poorly acted, terribly written garbage. I think this is the worst episode The Next Generation ever produced.
 
“Ménage à Troi.” Though this one comes damn close. Not only does this episode revolve around Deanna Troi, it also features her loathsome mother, Lwaxana, played by the offensively talentless Majel Barrett, the actress who married Gene Roddenberry and thus doomed Star Trek fans to revisit her repugnant character over and over and over again in multiple series. If some tech-geek editor ever wants to try and improve Star Trek through careful omission, like when Thomas Jefferson improved the New Testament by cutting the vast majority of it out, the first step should be to erase all appearances by and references to anyone with the last name “Troi.” This episode, in which Riker, Deanna and Lwaxana are kidnapped by a desperate and horny (and, it seems, blind) faction of Ferengi, would be a great place to start.
 
“Violations.” Yet another Troi episode. Jev, a member of a race of telepaths, inserts himself into sexy memories of various members of the crew (Riker and Troi making out after a poker game, Dr. Crusher viewing the corpse of her husband), causing them to fall into comas. Unfortunately, Troi’s coma does not last the rest of the episode and end with Picard eagerly pulling the plug; instead she revives and happens to be the only other person in the room when Jev, dumbass that he is, accidentally reveals that he’s been behind all the coma-inducing shenanigans and not his father, who he tried to frame for it. This is an excellent example of what makes Troi such an awful character — she’s the ship’s counselor, supposedly well-trained in psychology and behavioral studies, and she’s an empath, and yet she has no idea that Jev is the one who’s been mind-raping everyone until he’s about to shove her onto the floor of her quarters and vagina-rape her. Why would Picard, who nearly always came across as an intelligent and responsible dude, keep such a dense fucking dolt on his senior staff for like fifteen years?
 
 
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
 
Deep Space Nine was the best of all the Trek series. Gene Roddenberry was long dead by the time it got on the air, so the producers were able to discard some of his “humans have solved all their problems” utopian bullshit and start writing stories incorporating conflicts between members of the crew. The result was some the best episodes ever produced by a Star Trek series, shows like “Duet,” “Past Tense,” “The Visitor” and “In the Pale Moonlight.” Unfortunately, like every other Trek series, DS9 was wildly inconsistent. One week it was a brilliant hour of thoughtful science fiction, the next it completely jumped the track. Those weeks when it went off the reservation, DS9 produced some of the most spectacular failures in television history.
 
“The Forsaken.” Christ, will the Trois just leave me the fuck alone? Lwaxana Troi arrives on station Deep Space Nine and spends the next hour crudely flirting with Odo, despite Odo’s total lack of interest. Sadly, this was only the first of Majel Barrett’s approximately 800 appearances on DS9 as Lwaxana. To make a shitty situation worse, by the end of the show, in spite of experiencing Mrs. Troi’s obnoxious and repellent personality in close quarters for an extended length of time, Odo has grown to like her. Is there anything worse than a good character forced to befriend a shitty character? Yes: a shitty character who will not go the fuck away.
 
“Fascination.” Would you believe another Lwaxana Troi episode? And the episode that aired the week before this one was the also shitty “Defiant,” guest-starring Jonathan Frakes as Thomas Riker. Were the producers of DS9 trying to punish us? If so, they commuted our sentence the following week with the first half of the great two-parter “Past Tense,” followed by three more great episodes in a row before running aground with a shit-tastic Ferengi show. It took that much consecutive awesomeness to make up for “Fascination,” which is really among the worst of the worst. In it, Lwaxana Troi returns to the station with some kind of telepathic fever that projects her romantic and stomach-turning feelings for Odo onto the rest of the crew, causing them to randomly pair-off and lust after one another. Jake goes after Kira, Vedek Bareil goes after Dax, Dax goes after Sisko, Quark goes after O’Brien’s wife Keiko, and viewers went from the channel airing Deep Space Nine to the channel airing Babylon 5 in the same timeslot — and really, who could blame them? Even a Walter Koenig guest-spot is better than this.
 
“Bar Association.” Lwaxana Troi returns to the station to open a legal practice next to Odo’s office on the promenade and hijinx ensue and — fucking relax, I’m kidding. This one’s from DS9’s other bottomless barrel of shit, the one full of Ferengi episodes. Outraged at Quark’s cruel treatment, Rom organizes the other employees of the bar into a union and they go on strike for higher wages and shorter hours ("vacations with pay, take your kid to the sea-shore!"). The strikers picket outside Quarks at all hours, and are the cause of a brawl when Worf attempts to cross the picket line to go get liquored-up and O’Brien and Bashir, supporters of the strike, try to stop him. Eventually a representative of the Ferengi Commerce Authority arrives to break up the strike, since apparently a work stoppage at a bar on a remote space outpost is a matter of planetary concern for the Ferengi. Quark gets beaten up and agrees to Rom’s demands, then Rom quits anyway, which doesn’t even piss me off because by this point I’m just thrilled to death the episode is finally over and the teaser for next week shows no signs of either Lwaxana or Ferengi. Savor these moments.
 
“Profit and Lace.” Maybe the worst of all the Ferengi episodes, and a popular choice among fans for shittiest episode of the entire series, this one gives us the ineradicable image of Quark in drag, complete with dress, earrings, and humongous torpedo tits. Quark endures the disguise because it’s related in some way to convincing the Ferengi authorities to reinstate his mother’s boyfriend Zek as the Grand Nagus. DS9’s Ferengi-centered episodes were all excruciatingly unfunny and appallingly bad, and yet the writers kept cranking them out. This one was written by Ira Steven Behr, one of the most important creative forces on the series, and the guy who wrote or co-wrote practically every shitty Ferengi episode ever made. Why the guy who wrote “The Way of the Warrior,” “In Purgatory’s Shadow” and “By Inferno’s Light” would also wish to inflict “Profit and Lace” on the world is beyond me, but the Ferengi episodes aren’t the only shitty shows Ira Steven Behr scripted . . .
 
“What You Leave Behind.” This one is resoundingly the most disappointing finale for any television series I’ve ever seen. Knowing that the show was going to end after year seven, knowing exactly how much time they had to work with and what they needed to accomplish, with a cast of great characters played by good actors at their disposal, the best the writers of Deep Space Nine could manage is this uneven, underwhelming shit-cake. The Federation wins the Dominion War, various members of the crew spontaneously decide it’s time to move on, and they all meet for a final party at the lounge in Vic Fontaine’s holosuite program, and we are treated to a lengthy musical montage of clips of the characters over the run of the series. Musical montages, especially ones as saccharine as this one, are the writers’ way of saying to their audience, “We literally could not think of anything meaningful for these people to say to one another during these few minutes, so go fuck yourselves.” Sisko is called away with the Prophets, Odo goes back to his changeling homeworld forever, O’Brien leaves to take a job as a teacher at Starfleet Academy, and Worf retires from Starfleet to become a Klingon ambassador, a career which lasts approximately eight seconds before he is inexplicably recalled to active duty in time to star in one of the worst sci-fi films of all time, Star Trek: Nemesis. That Michael Dorn is a lucky sumbitch, ain’t he?
 
 
Star Trek: Voyager
 
But now comes the true hurting. Next Generation and Deep Space Nine were essentially good shows that occasionally produced awful episodes; Voyager was the proverbial blind squirrel that sporadically lucked upon a nut. It was a brainless, derivative series populated by an ensemble of vague characters portrayed by actors who usually looked bored or embarrassed to be there. The show was so thoroughly, unrelentingly shitty that it’s difficult to pick the absolute worst episodes. I’ve decided to narrow my focus to the Voyager segments which were not only bad, but destructive to the (snicker) integrity of the overall Star Trek universe, not to mention contemptuous of the audience. Even doing that, it’s tough to choose only five.
 
“The 37’s.” In the season two opener, Captain Janeway and her band of interchangeable lackeys visit a planet populated by descendants of 20th century humans captured for some reason or another by evil aliens. Still in cryonic stasis are a few of the original humans abducted in 1937, including, it just so happens, Captain Janeway’s lifelong hero, famed lost aviator Amelia Earhart. The captured humans overthrew and killed their alien captors a long time ago, and built themselves a nice little fusion-powered city on the planet, where Earhart and her navigator Fred Noonan (who was banging her before they got kidnapped and taken to the other end of the galaxy) decide to remain. Janeway gives the crew a chance to remain, too, but because they are all devoted masochists, everyone remains on the ship. The episode is full of really, really stupid scenes, but the worst of all is the first one, when Tom Paris detects a 1930s Ford truck floating around out in space, beams it into a cargo bay, and is able to start it. The thing’s been floating in the vacuum of space for 400 years, frozen and exposed to fuck-only-knows what kind of radiation, and Paris gets the engine to turn over in like five seconds. Even the radio works.
 
“Threshold.” The most universally maligned and reviled episode of any Star Trek series. This one’s so bad that future Voyager episodes refused to acknowledge it even happened. The producers knew they’d fucked up, and granted themselves an indulgence, a take-back, if you will. This is a horrible episode for at least two reasons: one, it violates the built-in laws of the series, as Tom Paris and his souped-up shuttlecraft are able to fly at Warp 10 (previously established as the unattainable velocity, like Star Trek’s equivalent to the speed of light) by midway through the episode; and two, it violates the laws of nature, as the Warp 10 flight causes Paris to spontaneously mutate into a giant catfish with arms. This transformation is referred to by every member of Voyager’s well-trained Starfleet crew as “evolution” even though clearly it is not. Evolution is guided by natural selection and takes many generations, Brannon Braga, you fucktard — and even if it were possible to somehow evolve all by yourself in a couple of days, why the hell would a human being aboard a starship — which was designed by human beings, for the use of human beings, and is thus an environment perfectly suited to human beings — evolve into a slimy amphibian that can’t breathe oxygen or drink water and has no manipulative organs? But all that is just shit-sauce for the shit-goose; the real reason people hate this episode is because Salamander-Paris kidnaps Captain Janeway and takes her past Warp 10, too. After they’ve both “evolved,” they land on a planet, crawl into a hole in the ground, fuck real nasty and have lots of babies. Revolting.
 
“The Q and the Grey.” Next Generation left its audience with two great villains, and Voyager managed to ruin them both. First came Q, whose antagonistic chemistry with Picard always made for a good time. This was Q’s second appearance on Voyager; the first was in “Death Wish,” which was one of the better episodes of the series. This time, Q appears to try to persuade Janeway to be the mother of his child. Why would an omnipotent god-being like Q want to have offspring with a mortal? I have no idea and neither do the idiots who wrote this one; they must’ve figured if it was good enough for Zeus, it’s good enough for Q, or something. The stated reason for Q wanting to bump uglies with the charmless Captain Janeway is that the Q continuum is in the throes of civil war and Q hopes his half-Q/half-human child will somehow end the conflict. To illustrate, Q kidnaps Janeway to the continuum, which appears as a scene from the American Civil War, complete with Q dressed as a Union officer. The Q-Rebs eventually capture Q and plan to execute him and Janeway, but luckily (for them, not for us) the crew of Voyager has been able to enter the continuum with the help of Q’s ex-girlfriend, steal some Q-weapons (which look suspiciously like 19th century muskets) and save the day. Then Q impregnates his ex by touching his finger to hers, and he shows up a few days later on Voyager with his new bouncing baby boy, for whose sake he will act more responsibly from now on. Sound eye-gougingly stupid?
 
“Scorpion.” Not content with having fucked up Q forever, Voyager decided to pursue bigger game and try to ruin the Borg, too. Which they did. In the opening teaser, two fearsome Borg cubes are obliterated by a single shot from an unseen alien ship. The ship belongs to a species that inhabits another plane of the universe known as “fluidic space,” called Species 8472, and boy do they hate the Borg. Janeway makes a deal with the Borg — if they allow Voyager safe passage through their space, she will help them fight Species 8472, though how she figures her one ship is going to make any difference is beyond me. It sounds good to the Borg, though, who have contracted stupid from their brief exposure to the Voyager crew, and they send Seven of Nine, an assimilated human female, to negotiate with Janeway on behalf of the collective. Talk about castrating your villains — by the end of this two-part episode Voyager is able to single-handedly defeat massive fleets of Species 8472, the enemy so fearsome the Borg feared them, and escape assimilation from the Borg. And as an added bonus, they got to keep Seven of Nine, who, it turns out, cleaned up real good and provided conspicuous T & A for the rest of the series’ god-awful run.
 
“Year of Hell.” Of all the gleeful pokes to the eyeballs of its audience delivered by Voyager, this one might be the worst. The captain of a time-ship flies around the galaxy making “temporal incursions,” erasing certain ships or planets or races from history in an effort to prevent an attack on his homeworld and restore his dead wife. An unintended consequence of his fucking around with the timeline is that things keep getting worse and worse for Voyager. The ship takes a pounding, Tuvok is blinded saving Seven of Nine’s life, most of the crew abandons ship, and Janeway finally ends things by crashing Voyager into the time-ship that’s been causing all this trouble . . . and fixes everything! The time-ship explodes and everything it ever did is somehow undone, putting Voyager right back where they were at the start of the episode. A two-part episode containing a year’s worth of character development, completely erased in the last few seconds without so much as a “Sorry for wasting your time!” from the producers. “Year of Hell” is two hours of television that cost money to make and time to watch, with the lasting impact on the series and the characters being absolutely jack-shit. Nobody remembers it, nobody is affected by it, it never even happened. I don’t know if it’s outright contempt for the viewers or honest idiocy; either way it’s evidence that the writers and producers of Voyager didn’t have the first fucking clue what they were doing.
 
 
Enterprise
 
Or Star Trek: Enterprise, as it was re-christened in the third season, apparently with the assumption that finally admitting that it was just another Star Trek series would draw hordes of viewers. Of all the Trek spin-offs, this one had the most promise. If it had been taken seriously and produced by writers who really knew what they were doing and wanted to make something original rather than just another retread of Star Trek, this one could have been great. It’s set a hundred years before Captain Kirk’s era, and many of the familiar trappings of Trek — transporters, tractor beams, force fields — haven’t been invented yet. Shit, people still wear neckties and ballcaps! Sadly, those inconsequential details wound up being all that distinguished Enterprise from its predecessors. This was a series with a promising premise, made by people who had obviously had enough of Star Trek and had no fucking clue what more to do with it.
 
“Detained.” Sam leaps into the body of a starship captain imprisoned by the Tandarans, and discovers to his horror that the commandant of the internment camp is his holographic buddy Al! Not really, but that would have been better than what we ended up with. One of the worst parts of Enterprise was how uncreative so many of its plots were, even by Star Trek standards. This was the first episode of many to employ the “Archer and a member of the crew are captured and taken to an alien prison” formula. Half the episode is spent in the internment camp with Archer and Mayweather, in this case, while the other half depicts T’Pol and the rest of the crew aboard the ship scrambling to rescue them. The story with Archer and Mayweather in the internment camp is so uninteresting, and their rescue such a foregone conclusion, that the only possible reason anyone would want to watch this episode is to see Scott Bakula on-screen with Dean Stockwell for the first time since the late, lamented Quantum Leap. Even seeing that was a let-down — I kept waiting for Stockwell to start frantically pushing buttons on the electronic gadget in his hand while looking up at the ceiling and shouting “Ziggy!”
 
“Canamar.” This time instead of Archer and Mayweather imprisoned in an alien internment camp, we get Archer and Trip imprisoned in a transport ship on its way to an alien internment camp. Just crackles with originality, doesn’t it? Archer and Trip plot their escape only to have Lt. Reed and his security team swoop in to rescue them at the last second. How lazy were the writers of this show, and what the fuck was so great about the “Archer goes to jail” plot that forced them to keep rehashing it week after week after week? There was another one just two weeks after this one! All the Trek spin-offs were derivative of the earlier series to a certain extent, but Enterprise was the first one to actually plagiarize itself.
 
“Carpenter Street.” Enterprise had this incredibly dumb ongoing storyline about a temporal cold war between races from the far future. In this episode, members of the Xindi race travel back to Earth in 2004 and set up shop in Detroit, trying to develop a weapon to destroy humanity, or something. So naturally, Captain Archer and T’Pol are chosen by the other side of the cold war to go back to 2004 and investigate. Why Archer and T’Pol, and not a more qualified team of ass-kicking, time-traveling detectives? Because Archer and T’Pol are characters in the series and ass-kicking, time-traveling detectives are not. The 2004 sequences, which account for most of the episode, are bad to the point of being unwatchable. The script is by Brandon Braga and Rick Berman, also the creators of the series, who present a 21st century so inauthentic that, watching a character drink a can of soda in an early scene, I found myself unconvinced. When you’re producing a television series that takes place 150 years in the future, and you can’t even get a handle on the world you fucking live in every day, there is a problem.
 
“Storm Front.” Another lame-ass, overlong time-travel episode. For a show that was pitched as being more realistic and contemporary than other Star Trek series, Enterprise sure loved the fuck outta time-travel. In this two-parter, the Enterprise finds itself flung back to Earth in the 1940s, where the Nazis are winning World War II thanks to help from an alien from the future. Archer and crew help to defeat the evil Nazi-loving alien Vosk and destroy the infernal machine he was building to transport himself back to his own time, and the temporal cold war ends and everything goes back to the way it was before, when Nazis didn’t rule the Earth and life was great. As an added bonus to fans of the show, the episode begins with Archer — wait for it — a prisoner of the Nazis! “This week on Enterprise: When Shitty Formulas Collide!
 
“These Are the Voyages . . .” The final episode not only of Enterprise, but of all of Star Trek, at least for the foreseeable future, and it’s an hour of Commander Riker and Counselor Troi (during the events of the Next Generation episode “The Pegasus”) playing a holodeck program about the final mission of Archer’s Enterprise. It’s like a rerun nested within another rerun. Underwhelming? A bit, yeah. Not to mention insulting to the cast of the series. I hear-tell Bakula, Blalock and company were none-too-thrilled to hear that their finale was going to revolve around characters from another show that had been off the air for over ten years. Add to that insult the arbitrary killing-off of Trip and the fact that regulars like Dr. Phlox, Hoshi, Mayweather and Reed get almost no screen-time, and you get a real shitty send-off for a real shitty series. The montage at the end featuring the three Enterprises (Picard’s, Kirk’s, and Archer’s) flying away while Picard, Kirk and Archer all read part of the classic opening narration was nice touch, but would have been even nicer at the end of a well-written episode that didn’t whip its cock out and piss all over the last four years of the show it was wrapping-up. Or maybe that’s just me.
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