Best Archer Episode?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Odo, Nov 23, 2020.

  1. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic hyperpolypyroferricist Moderator

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    This thread gives me smiles. So heartening to see all the Archer appreciation. :biggrin:
     
  2. Yanks

    Yanks Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, especially the first time watching. I knew the series was only 4 seasons - so I thought they might actually kill off Hoshi. :wah:
     
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  3. Yanks

    Yanks Commodore Commodore

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    To me, moments like this are special too. He's come full circle with his opinion of Vulcan's and his relationship with T'Pol.

    BORDERLAND...

    ARCHER: It's your first official day of duty, Commander T'Pol. A present. It's from the early twentieth century. Should help keep you pointed in the right direction.
    [​IMG]

     
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2021
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  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  5. Yanks

    Yanks Commodore Commodore

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    Why do you choose Twilight? I've always thought of that as a T'Pol episode.
     
  6. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic hyperpolypyroferricist Moderator

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    I'll weigh in on that question, if I may. Yes, it's an extraordinary episode for T'Pol. She's at her most Vulcan at times, striving extra hard to hide her emotions behind her Vulcan mask, but she's broken after that awful collision at the beginning-- she loses a measure of her trademark surety after that.

    As for Archer, to me, he had a touching vulnerability because of he was at such a loss, being unable to remember. When T'Pol gently points out one of his dropouts early on, on the ship, the look on his face, as he struggles to hide his devastation, embarrassment, fear... really got to me. The image I remember the most is when T'Pol told him (for the umpteenth time) that Earth was destroyed, and the shock and pain hits him like a tidal wave, almost literally knocking him over. That moment tells you so much, about Archer, but about everyone suffering through this timeline. The pain so great that he is crushed by it. And you think how many times T'Pol had to tell him, the cumulative pain she had to bear for him.

    I think this episode had stellar performances all around, from all the actors. But for me, Archer stands out because he more visibly carries the shock and pain that everyone is feeling at the loss of humanity, because it's always, always fresh to him, acute and terrible. I think Bakula's performance is amazing, one of the reasons "Twilight" is in my top 5 favorite eps of the show.
     
  7. Mathieu

    Mathieu Ensign Newbie

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    Either Damage or Home, because they showed a vulnerable and imperfect Archer.

    In Damage, Archer had to put all of his moral principles aside in order to complete his mission to save the Earth from the Xindis (when he decided to betray the alien ship and steal their warp drive). It was very hard to forgive him for what he did but I always find that interesting to put a Starfleet captain in a position where he has to choose the lesser out of two evils. I liked that episode because it showed Archer as a human being rather than a never-failing hero and it reminded us even good guys can do bad things sometimes.

    In Home, Archer reflected on how that mission changed him and that he was not the principled man he used to be, when he was alone on a walk with Hernandez. It showed a conflicted and not-so-confident side of him that I personally enjoyed. Although I liked him from the get-go, I found that Archer was a bit too one-note during the first two seasons. Hence, those added flaws made him a more compelling, nuanced and likable character in my opinion.
     
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  8. Yanks

    Yanks Commodore Commodore

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    Excellent! Thanks.
     
  9. JaxsBrokenHeart

    JaxsBrokenHeart Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Damage always stood out to me as both a strong performance from Bakula and a true sign that the show had moved away from his rather lackluster characterization in the first half of the show.

    In seasons 1 & 2 the self righteousness about his actions (along with condemnation of others doing similar behavior) made Archer fairly unlikable at points, and that in combination with questionable competence often had me wondering how he got to be a Captain. He had his solid moments of course, but so often (especially in stuff like Night in Sickbay) it was hard to really appreciate his character because the show seemed focused on making him seem right with his decisions regardless of circumstance.

    In that sense Damage works because the drama of a situation where there is no right choice is actually explored and the effect that pressure has on him is given time to breathe. There's no big metaphorical speech about what this situation means and even the defenses of what they're doing to the Illyrians aren't the moralistic rants of earlier episodes, but the admitted ugly truth of a terrible situation that Enterprise is stuck in.

    And the whole thing leads to fascinating shift in to how I saw the character. Archer being fundamentally changed by the conflict with the Xindi and openly admitting he's doing things he probably thought he would never do means that something I often saw as a writing weakness (him coming off as an effective test pilot that was ill suited as commander of a warp capable ship) was turned into a strength.

    The story of a man who really just wanted to be an explorer thrust into situations where the fate of billions is on the line from his decisions and being fundamentally shaken by that was much more engaging that the directions they had previously gone with him. Archer after the Xindi attack and especially after Damage feels like someone who both experiences as well as respects the weight of command far more and even when making decisions I don't entirely agree with, they're ones that feel like he has given far more thought to.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2021
  10. Oddish

    Oddish Rear Admiral Fleet Captain

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    The series might have been better for it if they had... not because I didn't like Hoshi (I did), but because of the way her loss would have reverberated through the other characters. You want an Archer episode? See how he deals with that.
     
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  11. FederationHistorian

    FederationHistorian Captain Captain

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    The only issue I see with it is that it was kind of time for a male main character to die and be written off a Trek show.

    TNG – Tasha Yar

    DS9 – Jadzia Dax (Sisko went to the Celestial Temple during the finale and will return, so doesn’t count)

    VOY – None (Kes was written off the show, but not killed off. Although Harry Kim was mulled as a character to be killed off during its run).

    I get why the writers went with Trip, although it would have been braver if it were both Trip and Hoshi.
     
  12. Oddish

    Oddish Rear Admiral Fleet Captain

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    Trip's death doesn't count, because there was no definable aftermath. The series just... ended.
     
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  13. dupersuper

    dupersuper Commodore Commodore

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    I'll add my vote to Home.

    Plus, us novel fans know it was fake.
     
  14. NijeFer

    NijeFer Cadet Newbie

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    Yes, Trip's death could've been great opportunity to develop other characters since he had close personal relationships with the most of the crew (Archer, T'pol, Reed and even Phlox to a lesser extent).

    Not that I wanted Trip to die, but they could've done something useful with it.

    But no, all we got was "computer, end the program".
     
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  15. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I enjoyed pretty much all of Archer: 1999 :lol:
     
  16. Oddish

    Oddish Rear Admiral Fleet Captain

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    I've seen some very ballsy deaths, including on Star Trek. I think "Game of Thrones" takes the gold, though...

    Killing off their @#$*!-ing PROTAGONIST in Season 1!!

    Trip's death was not one of them.
     
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  17. FederationHistorian

    FederationHistorian Captain Captain

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    Again, I never said that Trip was killed. I said I understand why they went in that direction that Trip should be the next main character to die in a Trek series, albeit in the episode that they should not have made. Obviously the way they handled it was a disaster. And plans for S5 where that they were going to work backwards to lead up to that moment would have been terrible.

    The gutsier approach would have been to do it earlier in the season. Imagine Archer creating Sim 2 as a way to cope with Trip’s death?
     
  18. Mrs. Silvercrest

    Mrs. Silvercrest Captain Captain

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    The Forge and Awakening I could watch that over and over again and have!!
     
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