First-Timer's Impressions of Enterprise

Discussion in 'Enterprise' started by Jimmy Bob, Jul 6, 2009.

  1. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    Hello, my name is Jimmy Bob. Welcome to my thread.

    "Hi... I guess. I just wanted to know, like... what this thread is all about and everything... sumthing like that, yeah." - Bill from Chicago

    Well, Bill. Think of this thread as a progress report in the formation of an opinion about the show. Okay the essentials: I'm going to watch the show for the first time, I'll be posting impressions, and in those impressions I often might have the wrong idea about what comes next or who the characters are, because these are just first-timers impressions, but I'll try to understand the series and characters nonetheless.

    It goes something like this.

    Enterprise pilot - Broken Bow

    My first impression - god this show is so white. I know, I know - I did see that two characters were colored, but after Voyager it just feels so ridiculously white. And also very american. This is probably the most american of Trek shows.

    "Hi, it's Bill again. I just wanted to know that what do you mean when you say "this show is very american?" Aren't like all Treks american?"

    No. I mean it feels more entrenched in american national mythos than any other Trek shows. A sort of fulfillment of Manifest Destiny. I can't pin-point it exactly... and true, TNG-era had things like characters loving some 1930's pulp fiction, but despite that, the TNG-era didn't feel american.

    TOS does feel american (but in a different way), so perhaps it is this going back to the roots thing.

    I wonder how, with the theory that after some 50-100 years, when the WASP culture becomes a minority, due to more hispanics, how that would affect the american national identity? Can't be this WASP anymore, and how this new less WASP america would adopt the forefathers and manifest destiny into it's identity?

    I know that hispanic is a ridiculous term to mean a race, since Argentina and Uruguay are whiter than Hitler, but in this case I used the term like the american media uses it - it mostly means mexicans of amerindian/mestizo stock.

    And I managed to start ranting about something else than the show.

    It was very refreshing to see more "less perfect" humans and the whole appearance of the clothes and interiors feels just so nice after 14 years of TNG-era.

    The humans in this are far too nice to be like us, and yet they are far too child-like to be like Picard. Too child-like to be even us. That scene with Archer and that mysterious alien woman, and Archer and that bad suliban... Archer really feels so amusingly child-like and oblivious to the universe in those scenes.

    "We're just taking him home!"

    The future of humanity - kind-hearted taxi drivers with knee-jerk ethical beliefs.

    Am I right to think of the vulcan century as a vulcan occupation of sorts. An enlightened occupation to help the occupied to have democracy... I mean... to have enlightenment. I wonder if vulcan propaganda of those days was anything similar to white propaganda against various "people of color" (happy now?): let's kill the human, to save the race (let's kill the injun, to save the man).

    Anyway, I do find this sort of vulcan-human relationship to be interesting.

    Now some more specific impressions. The pilot wasn't very interesting actually. It didn't really impress. Unlike Caretaker for example, which captured me from the first scene.

    And what do I think of the characters so far.
    Archer - seems like a nice guy.
    Trip - can't really tell this guy apart.
    Mayweather - hello Harry Kim.
    Soto - she is scared of flying.
    Doctor - he is peculiar.
    English guy - he is english.
    T'Pol - she secretly wants to have wild sex with these lowly humans.

    I don't speak klingon, and I don't assume that you guys do, but I was wondering if anyone knows what that klingon leader said to Archer? The klingons felt very medieval mongolian in this episode - especially their fortress. I don't really like klingons. Other than Suzie Plakson, B'Elanna, Duras sisters and a few politicians, they inhale more than they exhale while speaking.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2009
  2. Mach5

    Mach5 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Hell no! Harry was all kinds of cool, Travis wasn't even there...

    It's Sato.

    Meaning?

    What gave her away? :lol:
     
  3. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    Meaning exactly that. It was all I got from the character from this pilot. That he is english. This thread sort of maps how I discover the characters throughout the series and what they're all about.

    As I said, this is an on-going process. I don't yet know what will become of these characters. The pilot painted him to be like Kim - ensign, young, proper, strange hobbies.... and that's my current impression about him.

    She had sexual tension with both Archer and Trip. And the way both those guys yell at her, and then she reconsiders her vulcan ways. And she tended to be a bit more sensual (in a vulcan way) when around those two.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2009
  4. Triskelion

    Triskelion Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    "People of color", not "colored people", and yes, it matters.
     
  5. Mach5

    Mach5 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Geeez, I didn't even notice this (post is too long).

    Jimmy, pal, I think an apology is in order.
    (you got tons of politically correct terms to choose from, yet you use "colored?")
     
  6. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    I'm sorry but this is just ridiculous. What kind of tyranny you native english speakers live under? Well, I'm sorry that I thought "coloured" was a nice wonderful neutral term. "People of color" would sound extra racist in my native tongue (because it would sound artificial and invented) and thus I would never have had come upon the term on my own.

    Race is nothing sacred or meaningful, as it's the socioeconomic and sociocultural influences that shape the person (and nation). Identity is in culture, thus a black person born and raised central european is by all means central european. But this kind of jumping around makes race more special than it is. It's not race one should respect, but the culture.

    However, I'll edit it into "people of color", but I still find it ridiculous. English seems to be the only language burdened by this. In spanish, black is negro. Nothing I can do about it, but that's the way it is. There were wonderful black civilizations and there were african tribes who ate people. There are still indians living in stone age, and there were indians back in the day who did social welfare before social welfare (inca's - probably my favorite ancient civilization) and who had steam baths in their houses (aztecs) while europeans shitted into their armor. These things all depended on socioeconomic and sociocultural influences and not on race.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2009
  7. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic Phloxist Moderator Moderator

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    Welcome to the forum, Jimmy Bob.

    It's always great to hear from new viewers of Enterprise. However, in future, please dispense with the non-sequitur political and socio-economical musings and inappropriate racial references; this is not the proper forum for them. ("Injun" isn't any better than "colored people.")

    Discussions on politics, race, economics, and the silliness of the English language are better suited for Misc or TNZ.

    Thanks, and I hope you find something about Enterprise that you enjoy.
     
  8. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Well, I hope we haven't scared you away, Jimmy Bob. Your OP was hilarious, the way it was written and I hope you keep it up.


    You might be unto something here. I agree that the show felt quite American. I remember reading a review in a newspaper when the show started airing here that harped on about that before going off on a tangent to Bush-era America. I agree with what you said about TNG.
    As for the whiteness, well, I didn't notice that so much since I'm from a really white country but I guess you do have a point, although Voyager doesn't strike me as more diverse in that regard (3 non-whites in the main cast, just like on ENT, unless I'm forgetting someone).


    :wtf: I have no idea how you arrived at this conclusion. I thought it was pretty obvious that the Vulcans were more like advisors since the humans then did what they wanted. But of course, they would have influence since they helped humanity so much and you don't want to piss off people who did so much and have resources/knowlegde you want.

    Well, not with all of them... ;)
     
  9. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    Well now I see that each Trek subsection is indeed a different world. I did a lot of this political and socio-eco... socio-cultural actually, on Voyager forum too, and there no one minded. I just took it for granted. I'll keep this in mind and honor the local traditions. Perhaps mild, very mild references? And as to "injun", when I said it I was just ironically comparing vulcans to past superior races, using that particular word as to illustrate this sort of attitude.

    If I may be so bold to explain what I was talking about... the show just felt very WASP and I was just musing on how America might not be so WASP anymore and why it was a bit funny that this show is so WASP, while the TNG-era wasn't.

    Slightly, but I recover.

    "I have no idea how you arrived at this conclusion. I thought it was pretty obvious that the Vulcans were more like advisors since the humans then did what they wanted. But of course, they would have influence since they helped humanity so much and you don't want to piss off people who did so much and have resources/knowlegde you want."

    I just wondered what it was that made humans feel so discriminated. So I thought the vulcan era must not have been like eating ice cream.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2009
  10. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    That's certainly true.


    I don't think they felt discriminated so much as held back. The Vulcans were pretty much like authoritative parents who knew everything better. They meant well but at some point you'd grow annoyed with them.
    Even after the humans disregarded their advice they would help them if needed, as you'll see later on. So I think it really was a sort of parents - children coming of age analogy.
     
  11. JB2005

    JB2005 Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, but see it from the Vulcans' point of view, the only reason we think the Vulcans are wrong, is because there have been four (five) series which have shown what an impact humanity has on the galactic stage. If Enterprise had been original SF told from the Vulcan POV we'd have an entirely different take on it...
     
  12. Praetorian

    Praetorian Captain Captain

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    C'mon! Those so called "non-sequitur political and socio-economical musings" are an essential part of the Jimmy Bob Experience! If not *the* essential part. I find them fascinating and quite insightful!
    Please, let Jimmy Bob proceed undisturbed!

    Anyway, great post as always, though I hope this doesn't mean you gave up on the Voyager thread. I know people haven't been quite responsive lately but I certanly enjoyed reading it.

    I also find it interesting that your views about the world, race and culture pratically match mine. Fascinating!
     
  13. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Mmh, I didn't say the Vulcans were wrong. From their point of view their behaviour made perfect sense. And they were sort of right. The humans did destabilise the balance of power in that region of space, after all. It did lead to something great eventually (the Federation) but that wasn't evident at the beginning at all, of course.
    Also, we got the more extreme human view of the Vulcans. Archer was kind of a prejudiced jerk towards them and even T'Pol in the beginning. Others seemed to be more moderate, like Admiral Forrest.
     
  14. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic Phloxist Moderator Moderator

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    Regarding discussion of contemporary race, religion, politics, and other potentially contentious real-world subjects... the idea is to bring them up within the context of the series, which you are welcome to do. We're just trying to avoid inadvertent dust-ups that may result if folks veer off topic to talk about contemporary issues for their own sakes. That's what Misc is for, or TNZ if you're feeling particularly ornery.

    Carry on. :)
     
  15. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    Flight or Fight

    Perhaps back in 2001, watching it on tv, this episode might have felt very boring. But on dvd, this felt like a wonderful quiet character episode. True, not that wonderful.... but still, it was filled with characters casually interacting.

    I like the casualness of the crew - the captain snacking while making a log, Trip and Doctor sharing food, captain searching for weird noises, that sort of thing.

    It's also nice to feel the primitiveness of this technology - torpedoes bouncing off asteroids and returning towards the ship. But I'm not sure about one thing - it still looks pretty close to future Trek, just more buttons and less chance for working. There doesn't seem to be that much progress in 200 years. But it's probably very hard to make futuristic look even more futuristic, and that's why the future Trek technology doesn't seem to be that different from this primitive one.

    The primitive translating is probably the most wonderful idea. I feel for Hoshi. It also made that scene on the bridge very intense.

    The Doctor is a very peculiar morbid character... very, very different from what I've used to. Refreshing. Disturbing.

    I don't find the other characters to be very interesting yet.

    Archer is the knee-jerk ethical outrage kind-hearted taxi driver of the universe: "We will take these people home, no matter the cost!" Could be interesting.

    Trip... I dunno about him yet. Doesn't stand really out.

    And about other characters I can't really say aything different from my first impressions.

    For example, Hoshi was still scared of flying. Her problem just had now more focus. I already learned from the pilot that she be scared... so other than centering on that she be scared, it didn't really expand from that. I do hope that the writers didn't consider her problem do be done with that slug analogy.

    Praetorian wrote: "Anyway, great post as always, though I hope this doesn't mean you gave up on the Voyager thread. I know people haven't been quite responsive lately but I certanly enjoyed reading it."

    Much appreciated. No, I will continue with Voyager too. Today-tomorrow.
     
  16. lceb

    lceb Commander Red Shirt

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    Now that you mention it I remember I had thought exactly the same. There was an optimism and an innocence in the humans that I found fascinating and I liked very much. Like if after WW III and the Vulcan presence on Earth people had become cleaner, more child-like as you say and I consider that a positive characteristic. It was one of the things that attracted me to Enterprise.
     
  17. Jimmy Bob

    Jimmy Bob Commander Red Shirt

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    Strange New World

    I think I really... really like Trip. I think that Trip is... awesome. And I don't why. Some things just are like that. Trip is amazing.

    "Gimme your boot!"
    "What for?"
    "So I can squash it!"
    "Are we allowed to squash alien lifeforms!"
    "If they're inside your sleeping bag! ... Where'd you put the phase pistols?"
    "You want to shoot a bug?"
    "I'm just gonna stun it!"

    - Trip and Travis

    I enjoyed this episode. I liked the child-like joy and innocence the crew had when exploring the planet. Taking pictures and walking dogs. Also they had similar tents to mine. And I think I've yet to hear "son of a bitch" in Trek before.

    Both Flight or Fight and this are pretty much quiet episodes, where the crew members just casually interact with each other. And both manage to portray rather well just how small and insignificant humans are at that moment.

    "That's it. To the left of that trinary cluster."
    "What?"
    "Our sun."
    "Are you sure?"
    "Yeah I'm positive. Just another speck of light... no different than any other."

    However this episode is way better and way more entertaining than Flight or Fight. Because of Trip. Trip rules. I realize that now. I don't know how I could not see this before. That scene in the cave, where Trip goes mad... that was so awesome and intense. And I believe T'Pol was really frightened in her vulcan way. It really felt like he is really going to kill T'Pol. Trip is awesome. Not because he yells and points guns at women... he just is. It's something you feel. I can't explain it.

    Also I think that T'Pol has some S&M tendencies. She was so flirting with Trip when she said: "I'm afraid I did (shoot you)."

    I'm also glad that the stupid crewmember survived. I actually hate to see these sort of random deaths, so I'm glad he survived.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2009
  18. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Yeah, that was a nice change to the custom redshirt death in Trek. I really expected him to die. Apparently, he was originally supposed to die, but Scott Bakula argued that it would be wrong to have him die and not address his death in any way, so they changed it. At least that's what it says on Memory Alpha.
     
  19. Mach5

    Mach5 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Welcome to the club! :lol:
    (You ain't seen nothing yet, BTW)
     
  20. seigezunt

    seigezunt Vice Admiral Admiral

    political wrong-way-rubbing aside, good post. I hope to do the same as soon as amazon sends me my first season set. Damn, I opted for the free delivery, so it will probably be a while...