Jose G. Perez
jgperez at netzero.net
Fri Sep 20 15:46:49 MDT 2002
Show title is Enterprise, no "the."
It is meant to be a return to the original series, although this show is set
quite a bit earlier. The vulcans in particular are portrayed as overbearing,
paternalistic and manipulative. The Captain's rudeness to his Vulcan first
officer has to be understood in that context. I agree it doesn't work, the
captain just comes across as being a barely civilized jerk who proves human
beings descended from monkeys -- and not too far. This sort of thing is
dropped in later episodes, although not the theme of the relationship
between the more advanced and quite arrogant Vulcans and the humans, who are
just taking their first baby steps in *real* space exploration.
This theme, the relationship between more advanced species and the humans,
is the underlying theme in the main arc of the Babylon 5 saga, and
Enterprise is going to have a hard time even getting into the same league,
partly because it relies on the isolated one-hour episode as opposed to
narrative arc over several episodes (and never mind B5's 100+ episodes and
four or five movies, all tied together as one continuing story with, as
Zatharus would say, a beginning, a middle and an end).
Rewatching B5 now, especially the episodes relating to President Clark's
coup, the Nightwatch, etc., brings a whole new series of perspectives on it.
Subsequent episodes after the first one in Enterprise I think show an
attempt to explore more serious issues, like neocolonial pollution,
male/female gender issues & identity (one of the men aboard the Enterprise
gets impregnated by an alien), hunting as a sport. Sexuality/sensuality
versus logic/order/discipline has been looked at in an episode around the
Vulcan first officer who has already adapted quite a bit to human ways and
flirts with going further in the direction of "going native."
I don't think the show's writers or crew show the depth evidenced by the
creators of Babylon 5, but clearly an attempt is being made to be more than
what recent star treks degenerated into.
Although I'll confess my favorite part of the show are still the opening
credits -- I love the grand narrative sweep of it, all in 30 or 45 seconds--
and no, none of the episodes have yet to really live up to the credits, but
some have been pretty good.
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