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-   -   In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique? (http://www.trekbbs.com/showthread.php?t=240418)

YARN March 16 2014 08:59 AM

In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
There's something striking about this two-parter. It is ridiculous, overblown, and rather... ...dumb.

The episode ditches strumming guitar earnest tones of "Long road" (the most despised opening music in all of Trek) and replaces it with macho sounding fare with dynamic military images in the background. Things go bang! Indeed, the two-parter is filled with a lot of pew-pew! action and the characters are simple and action-oriented.

The episode feel like a critique of fan-service, even as much as it caters to it. It functions as a guilty pleasure, but clearly does not aspire to be anything more than a guilty pleasure. This was fun as a change of pace, but you couldn't sustain a series with dialogue.

Enterprise failed, but this episode seems like the series making a case for its own virtues. Sure, Archer is stupidly earnest and plucky (like an oversized human version of his Beagle), but consider what might have been... ...surely plucky Archer is better than the MacBeth version? If so, we might be inclined to reappraise the virtues of the regular show.

2takesfrakes March 16 2014 12:25 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
In A Mirror Darkly may be overrated, I'll grant you, but what I really hated was the inclusion of that shitty-assed Playstation-looking Gorn. You know it's bad when the original series version was actually more believable and threatening ...

King Daniel Into Darkness March 16 2014 03:12 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I was very disappointed by it. I never clicked with any of the mirrorverse NX01 crew and thus didn't give a toss what happened to them.

I wish they'd been able to get Shatner to play an aged mirror-Kirk in the Prime universe, as originally planned. Or did a "Tomorrow's Enterprise" -type thing where the regular crew get to explore the TOS Enterprise.

I did love the First Contact intro, though. That was fantastic.

t_smitts March 16 2014 04:04 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
The twisted and chaotic mirror universe itself (assassinating your superiors to get ahead) has never made much sense, but I don't think it's really meant to.

I was highly dubious when I heard "Enterprise" was doing a mirror universe story, because DS9, in my opinion, went to that particular well WAY too many times. I was really well done, and yes, bringing back the Connie Defiant and putting the cast in OS uniforms is pretty blatant fan service, but is it really any more guilty of that than, say "Trials and Tribble-ations"?

Other than the extremely lame shot of Kelby being pulled to his death (re-watch that scene and you'll understand), I really have no complaints. Yes, the CG Gorn may be a bit dated, but can't you say the same about the dude in a suit in "Arena"?

I would hope, had the series continued, they would've had the good sense to keep this a one-time outing (though I get the impression they wouldn't have), but as a stand-alone two-parter, it's just a hell of a lot of fun. Not every episode has to have the depth of "Duet" or "Cogenitor". You can treat yourself to a sugary dessert like this once in a while.

Mr. Laser Beam March 16 2014 04:20 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I loved IAMD, but an even better opening credits sequence would be this:


publiusr March 16 2014 10:15 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I loved the episode myself--great to see the Planet of the Titans asteroid base--even though they called it Tholian.

Mr. Laser Beam March 16 2014 11:02 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I've made no secret of the fact that Vaughn Armstrong is my favorite actor of all time, and it's episodes like this that only serve to reinforce this view. I totally cheered when his character (Maximilian Forrest!!! :techman: ) willingly stayed behind on the ISS Enterprise to sacrifice himself so that his crew could get away. It just showed that even in the mirror universe, there were some people who still acted with courage and honor. :)

daedalus5 March 24 2014 07:17 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I disliked Enterprise, but loved this episode. The whole series was starting to improve and become enjoyable for me by this point, where, sadly, it was cancelled. I loved the premise and seeing the Constitution class in action. I was also pleased to see Bakula being able to act and stretch in the role. I'm a big QL fan and was disappointed by the somewhat bland reactions he gave in the series and what he brought to the role. If only there was a Season 4 set entirely in the mirror universe!

Richard Baker March 26 2014 03:02 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
Quote:

publiusr wrote: (Post 9366421)
I loved the episode myself--great to see the Planet of the Titans asteroid base--even though they called it Tholian.

That and after all these years we finally get a chance to see a Tholian properly.
I could have done without the entire Gorn hiding in the Jefferies Tubes thing and spent that time at the end of the episode seeing what the Defiant could really do.
Matching the location of the bodies from the TOS episode was a nice touch.

I do wish the Mirror NX looked more heavily armed though, like the Warship Voyager in 'Living Witness'
http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Warship_Voyager
The NX we have seen before was constrained by Earth technology being held back by the Vulcans- since the Terran Empire had access to all the ship should have reflected that a bit more I think.

billcosby March 26 2014 05:46 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I consider this 2 parter to be the frosting on the cake of season 4.
I was so impressed with how they handled the 'evil' versions of themselves, I would like Enterprise less as a whole without IAMD.

ssosmcin March 27 2014 02:48 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I would have enjoyed this more if it were a single part episode and not one of the final episodes of the series. We had so little time left with this crew – and nobody expected a 5th season – so spending two weeks in an alternate universe bugged me.

Everyone did a pretty good job, but Bakula was really far too over the top. I honestly find it to be his worst performance in the series, where he was usually rock solid. Not one of my favorite episodes, obviously.

DonIago March 27 2014 03:39 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
Isn't Over the Top a defining trait of basically anything MU-related though, at least when it comes to the principals?

I loved the episodes. Would have been curious to see more of this timeline's development, though I think I might have preferred single episodes going forward.

Galileo7 March 27 2014 04:21 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
Quote:

daedalus5 wrote: (Post 9396382)
I disliked Enterprise, but loved this episode. The whole series was starting to improve and become enjoyable for me by this point, where, sadly, it was cancelled. I loved the premise and seeing the Constitution class in action. I was also pleased to see Bakula being able to act and stretch in the role. I'm a big QL fan and was disappointed by the somewhat bland reactions he gave in the series and what he brought to the role. If only there was a Season 4 set entirely in the mirror universe!

Agree. Season 4 finally got it right.

ssosmcin March 27 2014 04:25 PM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
Quote:

DonIago wrote: (Post 9408115)
Isn't Over the Top a defining trait of basically anything MU-related though, at least when it comes to the principals?

Normally, but if you look at many of the others in the cast, they were more subtle. Balkula was bursting blood vessels doing the smallest things. He was apparently trying to out-Shatner Shatner. At least he was having fun....

LMFAOschwarz March 29 2014 03:37 AM

Re: In a Mirror Darkly: A Critique?
 
I enjoyed the episode(s), but the problem was that it just whetted my appetite for something I knew would never happen: a new series set in the original series time frame. Maybe it's just the wistful old-timer in me...but it sure felt nice, for the first time in a long time, I couldn't wait for next week's episode. :)


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