Getting from there to here, an Enterprise rewatch.

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Richard S. Ta, Mar 27, 2021.

  1. Richard S. Ta

    Richard S. Ta Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2021
    Location:
    Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
    Please don’t be under the impression I even want to be agreed with. If you think I’m wrong about something, shout it out! You may even convince me…

    Otherwise, much appreciated and I’m glad you’re taking some pleasure from my rewatch.

    This is totally fair and agreed.

    There’s something interesting here I feel, especially as you said:

    I hadn’t thought of this before, but it is very strange to have a science officer onboard who tends to react as T'Pol does. A given character may say, “wow, look at (insert here) phenomenon!”, only for T’Pol to shrug and say “meh, the Vulcan Science Division have already seen those X amount of times”.

    T’Pol may have been better fulfilling something closer to Hoshi’s role. A kind of xeno-liaison who’s familiar enough with many species and can facilitate and supervise first contact. Of course, this is Berman and Braga not thinking too hard, so we get a Vulcan science officer because that’s what TOS did.

    I’m no expert, but I do know a fair bit about space and so forth and it’s my understanding that such rogue planets would be frozen balls of ice. Certainly they couldn’t sustain a biosphere. But there it is.

    It just about works. As you say, there’s too much shorthand, but yes.

    Low bar for the show to clear. But, clear it it does.

    I don’t know about this. The wry response T’Pol had to Archer with the cuffs put me very much in mind of similar antics between Spock, Kirk and McCoy. T’Pol does have a sense of humour. Also, if there’s anything we’ve learned about Vulcans in Season 1, it’s that they are adept at deception (much like their Romulan cousins). The seduction may be slightly out of her wheelhouse, but T’Pol is pragmatic enough to know that if she doesn’t put a show on, she’ll be sold into slavery. That’s enough motivation to fondle Ferengi earlobes.

    Also, don’t ever think you missed a chance to comment on an episode. The only discussion I really don’t want to open up again is Dear Doctor as it caused a lot of bother a few pages back. Aside from that, anything is up for grabs.

    ENTERPRISE

    EPISODE 20: OASIS

    [​IMG]

    "Well, apart from the landing party, there's no one here."


    I’ll start this one by saying I intend absolutely no disrespect to the late, great René Auberjonois. The man had a stellar career outside of Star Trek and the contribution he did make to Deep Space Nine is obviously nothing short of legendary (in our little sphere at least). Unfortunately, both physically and in the distinctive cadence of his voice, I found his casting here to be distracting. Putting all of that aside, he does wonders in Oasis with rather slight material and his appearance was welcome, but it was nonetheless, just that. Distracting.

    Otherwise, we have a pleasant if unremarkable mystery box here. Auberjonois himself noted similarities between the story and a similar set-up on Deep Space Nine, though he noted that retouching upon certain themes within a long-lived franchise like Star Trek was inevitable. In fact, it’s another episode that could be ported over to TOS with little alteration. Something which I don’t think is necessarily a negative. The tragic father who crafts a fantasy world for his lonely daughter to live in. All well and good I suppose, but the whole thing still feels like a show treading water. It’s been 9 episodes now since we even touched upon the underlying arc elements that were introduced way back in Broken Bow.

    "I was looking at him. I was looking right at him, and he. And he just wasn't there!"

    I didn’t hate it, didn’t love it. Ray mentioned A-stories and B-stories up thread which is normally something that Berman Trek manages to pull off, but again we have an episode in which only one plot-thread is given priority and while it was at times intriguing (the revelation that the actual crew had been dead, floating in orbital tombs for 20 years was well done with a suitably grim reveal when the escape pod was opened), once again I don’t feel there is sufficient story for 40 minutes worth of television here. Even T’Pol lampshades the fact that Trip taking interest in a cute young lady has been done in the not-so-distant at all past.

    That said, Trineer does play this kind of thing well. As shallow and as short-lived as it inevitably must be, the miniature romance here was played well by those involved.

    "They were there, now they're not."

    Oh, one other thing that took me out of the story is this:

    Yet outside looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    Where it seems to me that there’s plenty taking root. The episodes title would suggest that the airponics bay is supposed to be a literal oasis, set within a ship that has crashed on a barren planet, but the visuals don’t bear that out. Maybe Liana meant nothing will take root, aside from those vast swathes of grass surrounding the ship?

    The left hand not knowing what the right hand is doing.

    Huh. Nitpicking. Not good. If I’m being generous it’s a 6/10. I know this show gets it’s socks on eventually and I guess it should come as little surprise that at times it’s a slog to get through these early episodes.

    Anyway, I actually remember a little bit about the next one. Who couldn’t be happy seeing Dean Stockwell and Scott Bakula reunited for a cheeky Star Trek episode?

    Happy times and places,

    Richard S. Ta.

    Images reproduced with permission of Trekcore.com
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2022
  2. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2022
    I quite like this episode and don't mind that it's pretty similar to Shadowplay.
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  3. Ray Hardgrit

    Ray Hardgrit Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2021
    You're being a little more generous than I would be maybe, and I didn't even catch the fact that things were in fact taking root outside the ship. I wish the episode was better, because I then I could say it was like an oasis of watchability in a desert of mediocrity, but it's more like another sand dune.

    I've heard a lot of people compare it to the DS9 story Shadowplay, but it also reminded me of that episode's counterpart Paradise, the one right before it about the colony of real people who'd crashed years ago. This had a bit of that creepy cult vibe to it. Plus there's a little bit of Progress in there too, with the old man who doesn't want to leave the home he's built on a barren world. It probably would've been better if there'd been a bit more of it actually, as Rene Auberjonois didn't get as much screen time as I expected and he was the most interesting character.

    I didn't really find his casting distracting, but I knew the twist so I was a bit distracted by all the clever lines that hinted at the crew's true nature. "You might say it keeps us alive", "he's not like you, he does what he wants", "I've made all the friends I need" and so on. I shouldn't complain about clever lines though really, as it's all the dull ones that were sending me to sleep. One thing that did amuse me was the reveal that the crash and all the deaths were caused by an ion storm... like the one Archer deliberately flew into at the end of Broken Bow. Ooops. Well, he's learning about these things as he goes.

    Enterprise really does feel like it's treading water at this point and I'm not sure why that is exactly. I was watching this season simultaneously with TNG and Voyager, and it's roughly as episodic as either of them. All three series reconnect with something from the pilot episode around 10-11 episodes in, and there's some light serialisation occasionally (very light in TNG's case), but they're mostly built to tell stand-alone stories. So it's strange that this stretch of Enterprise feels like filler.
     
  4. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2022
    Strange New World:
    • I was surprised that the red shirt made a full recovery
    • There's a lot of dramatic tension in this episode
    • It hadn't occurred to me that this episode is similar to The Naked Time and The Naked Now
    • One of the things Enterprise did very well was Archer, T'Pol and Trip all went on a believeable journey to overcome their prejudices
    • This and "Terra Nova" are ideas that only work very early on in the show

    Terra Nova:
    • It was interesting to see a human colony. TNG mentions that there are loads of human colonies formed in the 22nd century, but perhaps most of them were settled after Enterprise?
    • They could have done more with human colonies, just as they could have done more with the Boomers. I didn't get a clear picture of where Enterprise was in relation to Earth in the first two seasons.

    The Andorian Incident:
    • This is one of my favourite episodes of the show
    • I love the world-building with the Vulcans and the Andorians in Enterprise - it really felt like the Federation hadn't formed yet and like the Federation was needed to prevent a lot of the conflicts between neighbouring species
    • I really don't know whether Archer was right to make T'Pol give Shran the scanner or not: on the one hand the Vulcans are our allies, on the other hand do we want allies who think it's fine to disregard a treaty?

    Actually, the writers not loving Archer would explain a lot. I don't think Archer was an unbelieveable character: he seems to have got where he is by nepotism, he's clearly in way over his head and he's trying to do the best he can. Also he has a weird superpower of getting everyone on his side that seems to somehow involve him being beaten-up regularly.

    I love Spock's Brain. I've never understood the hate for it. I don't know whether it was the first sci-fi story to have the idea of a computer which is a brain, but it's an amazing idea. I actually really enjoyed Threshold - it just bothers me that they left the baby lizards behind.

    The Hoshi "translator" character is in a lot of shows but the only time I've seen that character used effectively was Daniel Jackson in Stargate SG1. I think that was because the second reason for him being on the team was the storyline about his family, he translated written text in foreign languages on and off throughout the show and he had stories about the fall out from him being ascended. In short, there was a lot more to the character than being a translator. I really like Hoshi - she's about 1000 times better at coping with being an astronaut than I would be so I have a lot of empathy for her season 1 storyline but yes, she does need more development.

    Shuttlepod One:
    • This is one of my favourite episodes.
    • I think you are right that it would work better if we didn't know Enterprise is fine until the end.

    Acquisition:
    • It really bothered me that they used the Ferengi when I first saw this episode because the Federation didn't meet the Ferengi until 200 years later.
    • On rewatching and knowing that the show didn't do the things I'd wanted from a prequel I really enjoyed this episode, it's very entertaining.
    • It's a shame that they didn't use the whole cast more in this one.
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  5. Farscape One

    Farscape One Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2017
    Regarding the red shirt surviving "STRANGE NEW WORLD"...

    It wasn't until recently that I learned that was more Bakula's doing. He felt there shouldn't be 'redshirt deaths' so soon in the show because everyone is needed on the ship. The first death is in season 3, which makes sense.
     
  6. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2016
    And these posts just made me realize Terra Nova may have shades of "Miri" to it.
     
  7. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic hyperpolypyroferricist redux Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    chillin with Grogu
    :lol: So that's why he gets beaten up all the time! Utter genius!
     
    Summer Solstice likes this.
  8. Phoenix219

    Phoenix219 Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2016
    Random thought.... Or rather, random what if?

    What if... there were no 24th century shows, and ENT was just a reboot of TOS, like the 2000s Battlestar was?

    Archer, T'Pol and Trip as the new trio of Kirk, Spock and McCoy... the Captain, the Vulcan and the Southern boy.... reimaginings of Naked Time and Miri, etc.... the frontier setting..... the "first" Enterprise..... right after the "time warp barrier" had been broken, the whole galaxy is opened up, exploring farther than ever before.... running into old and abandoned Earth colonies, etc.... its a kind of interesting parallel.
     
  9. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2022
    The more I learn about Bakula, the more he seems like a lovely person to work with.
     
  10. Ssosmcin

    Ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2002
    Location:
    ssosmcin
    I'm watching the behind the scenes documentaries and I really feel for everyone involved. Berman didn't want to make a new Trek show so soon, he and Braga didn't want it to be a space series right away and Braga admits to being fried and probably not on his game ("the Ferengi...why? What were we thinking?"). I feel like it was a no win situation for these guys and the cast, bless them, was in there pitching. Bakula is a saint, really. Because they got cancelled and fans pushed back hard at the time, I feel like the cast gets the short end of the stick. But they all seem like great people and hard workers.

    When I look at this series with older eyes, knowing what they were up against, both from the Network and with their own fatigue, I am appreciating the series so much more.
     
  11. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2022
    Totally. There was clearly so much thought that went into making the Enterprise sets look like they were from the 22nd Century and getting the uniforms to look right. They really tried to get it right.
     
    Richard S. Ta and Farscape One like this.
  12. HopefulRomantic

    HopefulRomantic hyperpolypyroferricist redux Moderator

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2004
    Location:
    chillin with Grogu
    Yes. The look of the show was so great. And the terrific production design really showed it off. The eerie creepiness of "Oasis," the shadowy lighting of "Daedalus," the parched look of "Desert Crossing," the bleached out color of "North Star." The music. Great stuff. Top cast and crew, working really hard every week.
     
  13. Richard S. Ta

    Richard S. Ta Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2021
    Location:
    Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
    Wow, where did all this activity come from?

    It shouldn't feel like that, but it absolutely does at points. Such a rich point in Trek history, ripe for exploration, but there is a lot of (as you said) treading water going on.

    It's not exactly a copy paste as in The Naked Time/Now but it is an episode that pushes characters out of their comfort zones into psychological extremes. It is a tense episode as well. Tucker off his nut with a phase pistol is beautifully played by Trineer.

    I'd really like Enterprise to have given us a deeper understanding of what space-faring humanity looked like pre-UFP. As with the Boomers though... sadly it wasn't to be. So much wasted potential in the setting.

    Yeah, it's a great one. Tense and crucially it feels like Enterprise affirming it's own identity in a way that others such as Acquisition don't. I liked the Ferengi episode, but there was not much about it that screamed 'Enterprise'.

    I just don't get the problem people have with Archer at all, in performance or conception... He wouldn't be the first person to get himself into a space program through nepotism, and even if he did, so what? That's just part of his background. He can get people on his side because Archer (through Bakula's performance) is charismatic and he gets beat up a lot because he's always throwing himself front and centre in missions.

    Overall I think he's a great captain and Bakula was absolutely the right Captain for this show.

    Spock's Brain is great fun. End of.

    It's a case of B&B wanting to have their cake and eat it I suppose. We have a comms character to line things up with TOS, but then naturally they wanted to make her more active than Uhura was, giving Hoshi more to do than basically man a switchboard. Sadly, as soon as they start using the UT regularly, her place in the show becomes redundant.

    It's 90% good which is good enough for me. Easy to see why it's regarded as a highlight of Season 1.

    Acquisition:
    • It really bothered me that they used the Ferengi when I first saw this episode because the Federation didn't meet the Ferengi until 200 years later.
    • On rewatching and knowing that the show didn't do the things I'd wanted from a prequel I really enjoyed this episode, it's very entertaining.
    • It's a shame that they didn't use the whole cast more in this one.
    [/QUOTE]

    I was surprised by how much I enjoyed it, largely down to the performances of the Ferengi guest stars I think.

    That's lovely!

    Yes, I can see that too.

    That's an interesting thought experiment. When I finally get to the end of Season 1 I may try to explore that in a piece similar to my 'THE PROBLEM WITH HOSHI' ramblings.

    Saint Bakula. Nobody has a bad word to say do they?

    Time certainly puts things in their context. I know fans gave this show Hell in its' day, but nobody on this show was going about things in a lazy way. There's thought gone into everything.

    Agreed.

    It still stands up. For the most part, even the CGI stands up and the sets look great on a big TV.

    ENTERPRISE: EPISODE 21

    DETAINED

    [​IMG]

    "I don't think I can stand another week in this godforsaken place."


    Well now, what’s this? It’s pretty good, that’s what. Detained is an episode that pulls no punches, making direct parallels between itself and both historical internment camps, whilst commenting upon issues that were pertinent to its’ contemporary audience. Issues which indeed are still pertinent today. This episode still feels punchy and relevant in places, challenging the audiences perception for the Suliban whilst making that same audience question the real world around them. Great stuff.

    Cultural homogeny is a problem that, lets be frank, the majority of science-fiction has. In Star Trek’s case, the roots of this run deep, right back to the sixties in fact, where it was common for science fiction writers to use aliens as analogs for differing human cultures. So a given race or cultural group may have been (for example) Space-Japanese, Space-Jews, Space-Native Americans and so on. Aliens created with broad strokes, purely because those aliens were intended to parallel real-world issues and not because they were intended to be representative of a wider culture. Take Balance of Terror, one of the TOS classics. We have a brief glimpse of Romulans, who are seen to be paranoid, duplicitous and warlike. TNG would go onto to feature Romulans again, at which time we learn that as a culture, as a people and in terms of pretty much each individual, Romulans are paranoid, duplicitous and warlike. We had to wait until Picard until we really got the idea that Romulans are a people, with different hairstyles, ideologies and a varied culture.

    Now, just looking at our own planet, obviously there are more cultures than anybody can reliably count and dozens of nations. Furthermore each of those cultures and nations are comprised of individuals with their own interests, beliefs and value systems. In other words, tarring all Romulans with the same brush is akin to saying all French people have pencil moustaches, like drinking wine, wear onions around their neck and have an unfortunate tendency to run away from a fight. Nonsense in other words.

    "We're not going to hurt you. Is this your home? Do you live here?"

    It’s rare in Star trek that we get to see say, a charitable, generous Ferengi, a Klingon who’d rather go to the library than have a fight or a Vulcan who despite trying, just can’t seem to ‘click’ with the whole concept of logic. As much as I’ve been critical of Enterprise, I have to admit that with varying degrees of success, in terms of the Vulcans the show has made inroads towards correcting this. We’ve had Vulcans behaving to all intents and purposes like Romulans, as well as Vulcans who eschew logic and have daddy-issues. Hell, we’ve had an unrepentant Vulcan rapist which is something I bet nobody expected to see, not that that is a positive.

    Broken Bow premiered on the 26th of September, 2001, weeks after the September 9th attack on America. That makes the episode a little late for me to make an obvious Suliban/Taliban connection or for any link between the so-called Cabal and Bin Laden’s Muslim insurgents to be made, but Detained aired in April the following year. More than long enough for events to sink into the minds of those producing Enterprise. Here parallels between the Suliban and Taliban are made explicit, especially in a world that was at that time reading every Muslim face as that of a terrorist.

    To hear then that the Suliban Cabal doesn’t make up the entirety of the Suliban culture is more than welcome and makes for engaging viewing. Lines like this are pertinent:

    And:

    Or even this from Travis:

    All particularly welcome. At a time when the world itself was becoming a darker, nastier place to live, Star Trek was sending out messages of hope, respect and tolerance. There’s something to be said for that and it’s a message that rings clear and true 20 years later. Not everybody from a given culture is going to behave in a preprogrammed way. Nations are not homogenous. The Suliban may have a Cabal, but the implication here is that said organisation isn’t representative of the Suliban as a whole. Rather they are a minority group of insurgents, with the rest of the Suliban being a nomadic species that have integrated themselves successfully into several alien cultures. There’s value in the message of Detained and it’s a message that can’t be repeated enough. More tolerance, more respect, more understanding, less preconceptions, less judgments and less assumptions.

    "You said you'd let them go!"

    All of this might be enough to let the episode have a thumbs up from me, but it goes a little further and tells an interesting and dynamic story too. Tracing back communication signals, beaming communicators into cells, clogging up the antagonists data stream with information spam and lightning Shuttlepod raids?

    Fabulous.

    Then, the late Dean Stockwell, playing a layered antagonist. More a pen-pushing administrator than a concentration camp overseer. Stockwell brings a great deal of nuance and weariness into the Tandaran, Grat, making it possible to understand his position without sympathising. I believe had Archer played it cool and just simmered down with Travis for three days, they’d have been off to the tribunal and pardoned just as Grat said. Plus of course, who (of a certain age) doesn’t get some joy from a covert Quantum Leap reunion?

    I actually watched this episode way back in February and drafted this write up then, but I never got around to giving it a once-over. I’ve got some holiday weeks coming up so I should be able to get a little further through Enterprise then. This rewatch has been going for more than a year now and I’m still not through Season 1, but I’ve stuck with it… Thank you all for reading and commenting and I hope to watch the next one soon.

    Happy times and places,

    Richard S. Ta

    Images reproduced with permission of Trekcore.com
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2022
  14. Summer Solstice

    Summer Solstice Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2022
    It's an interesting idea. There are no longer any issues with anything disagreeing with the 24th century shows.
    It would feel more like Earth was at risk during the Xindi arc. I'm not sure whether I would have felt emotionally invested in the 29th century time traveller/temporal cold war episodes though - I never did because I was emotionally invested in Archer and the Enterprise crew and what happens 700 years later doesn't really affect their lives.

    I can't imagine any Trek captain being able to play it cool for three days in this situation. Kirk would have talked until they let all the Suliban go and I think both Janeway and Sisko would have lead a sucessful prison break out.
     
    Reanok and Richard S. Ta like this.
  15. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    From what I heard, that was the higher ups doing. They didn't want any familiar Trek technology malfunctioning and killing people.
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  16. Ray Hardgrit

    Ray Hardgrit Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2021
    I can't remember if this was an issue in season 1, but I really started to notice a few episodes into season 2 that Archer seems kind of sick of space. He just wants to do exploration and make new friends, and all these Star Trek adventures are really wearing on what little patience he has left. There are probably ways to make a character like that work, but I don't think Scott Bakula does stern and angry very well. For me he's at his worst as an actor when he's pacing around his ready room, dressing someone down, but the writers kept giving him scenes like that to play instead of letting him be fun and charismatic.

    For what it's worth I think the first story to be written after 9/11 was episode 10, Fortunate Son. So yeah, this came long enough afterwards for the writers to have given the subject some thought.

    Absolutely, I can't fault this episode on its message at all. Though to me the episode feels more like a message with a story than a story with a message, which is always a bit off-putting to me. Especially when it means that everything's so depressing and serious. Plus it's kind of weird that it's a Suliban prisoner that has to learn not to assume that everyone who looks like the enemy is the enemy.

    A few things worked for me in this episode. I liked the Enterprise crew being smart with how they tracked down Archer and it was great to see T'Pol being 100% part of the team. I also liked the bit of an action scene at the end with Trip flying down to blow stuff up. But my favourite part of the episode was probably when Reed went to rescue his captain in disguise and was disappointed when Archer recognised him. That's the kind of character moment the series needs more of. We don't need any more scenes of Reed rescuing Archer from prison though; three times is enough for one year!

    Personally I'd rank the episode somewhere in the middle of the season, which isn't all that great considering where I'd rank this season. I think I mostly enjoyed it however. It definitely didn't bore me into a coma like some season 1 stories have, and I appreciated how it pushed the Temporal Cold War story forward a little. Well, it mentioned it at least.

    I definitely didn't hate seeing the two together again, but I was more relieved that they didn't spoil the story with any cheeky nods to the series. The writers did well here, and it was never a bad idea to cast Dean Stockwell.

    I'm glad you're still going with it!
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  17. Angel4576

    Angel4576 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2001
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    I started a rewatch last week. First time in well over a decade. I bought the blu rays when they came out and I hadn't seen the show for a while before that, and I've not watched it since I picked them up, so it's probably about 15 years since I last saw it.

    I've now finished the first season and I'm four episodes into season two.

    I have to say, it's a hell of a lot better than I remembered. I'm not sure if it's because I'm now so far removed from my previous viewings that I no longer have hang ups when comparing it to the other Berman-Trek shows, or whether it's because I'm not overly enamoured with modern Star Trek and I now appreciate ENT more because of that, but either way, it has gone up substantially in my estimation. It's interesting watching the extras, the conversation between Berman/Braga at the start of season one, the three-part overview of the first year on the final disc, and then the cast group interview at the start of season two, it seems to be universally accepted that the first year was nowhere near what they wanted it to be. TBH, I'm surprised at how negative Brannon in particular is about it because I actually found it fairly decent, with some great episodes in there and not many real clunkers at all. Even the Risa episode which he seems to hate I found decent enough. Sure it could have been better, but it wasn't too bad.

    It's a shame that the series had so many things against it from the get-go, and it's a crying shame that we didn't get a full seven years. It has a fantastic cast that deserved a lot more. I feel that they eventually paid the price for UPN's insistence on milking the franchise at a time when there was a general malaise with Star Trek and they ended up being pushed back to the well one time too many. They should have given it a year or two and then aired ENT. As it was, UPN was in trouble and ENT ended up the silver bullet that turned into the sacrificial lamb.

    Very much looking forward to (re) watching the rest of the series, even if it is a rather bittersweet experience at this point.
     
  18. Ray Hardgrit

    Ray Hardgrit Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2021
    It probably helps that you're exactly four episodes into season two. I found that to be one of the high points of the series.

    I think that fatigue was more of a problem for the writers. Sure a lot of people thought 'oh, it's another Star Trek' at first, but when they learned that it was a prequel about the first explorer ship that got people's interest. And the fall in ratings echoed Deep Space Nine and Voyager, with a sharp drop in season 1 followed by a more subtle decline. I'd blame a change in how people watched TV more than anything else for Enterprise's failure to impress UPN with its numbers. If they'd waited a year it might have gotten even fewer viewers.
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  19. Angel4576

    Angel4576 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 3, 2001
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    Quite possibly! It’s funny though, it may be my memory playing tricks, but I always remember being a bit “meh” about the first few years and feeling that it really hit its stride with the Xindi arc. Again though, it may also be because my preferences have changed over time. The third year was obviously a serialised story rather than the largely episodic stories with moderate character and general series arcing. 20 years later and sitting through every show under the sun ramming serialisation down my throat I find I’m a lot more nostalgic towards the episodic nature of the storytelling of the first two seasons.

    I think the prequel setting was pretty divisive decision tbh. I remember a lot of fans not being happy with that. I think it was a fair concern that they’d be restricted by the established canon largely being known with little latitude for universe-changing events, but I didn’t mind it myself, considering the plethora of events that we already knew did take place in that era, and how fun they’d be to explore.

    Fatigue was definitely a factor to some extent though. I know at that point I’d sat through nearly 15 years of there being 26 (usually) episodes a year, and by this point with there being a fair amount of competition (Babylon 5, Farscape, Stargate etc), there was a general wonder as to whether the entire nature of Star Trek was being left behind.

    Either way I don’t think the network situation helped. UPN was struggling and their priorities were changing. Voyager’s ratings were not great in the latter half of the series to put it mildly and ENT inherited some of that viewer malaise. Plus there was the inevitable “I don’t like this, it’s not <insert name of another Trek series>” which happened to both DS9 and VOY as well.

    Of course the network could only be blamed to a certain degree though, the negative trend in the viewership had started while Trek was still in syndication, with DS9, a trend that continued with the jump to UPN.
     
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  20. Timofnine

    Timofnine Vice Admiral Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2001
    Location:
    The World