Star Trek: Enterprise

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venkatcr

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I am a fan of Star Trek.

I started seeing ST quite some time ago. Naturally, the first I saw years ago was The Original Series. From that, I jumped to The Next Generation, and later to Star Trek Discovery. In between, I have seen all the movies – all 13 of them.

The reason I skipped the other TV series is bizarre. I just did not like the images on the posters or the synopsis of the series.

Recently, I realized Netflix has all the Star Trek series. I thought I will watch the first episode of Star Trek Enterprise and was hooked from that moment. I ended up seeing all the 76 odd episodes in under a month.

Though third in the series, Enterprise preludes the Original Series by 100 years and the Next Generation by nearly 200 years. The United Federation of Planets has still not been formed. It has none of the advanced technology that the other series have. Warp drive was just being discovered and the characters move from Warp 1 to Warp 5 through the seasons and episodes. The famous ‘Transporter’ was still in its infant stages, and new planets were explored the old fashioned way – through shuttle pods.

The ship is designated as NX01 Enterprise. Over the four seasons, the ship was given gradually improving technology. Its armaments started with simple missiles and torpedoes and moved to phase cannons and particle beams through the 3rd and 4th seasons. The main drive started with warp 1 and moves to warp 5 only in the end.

The main characters are
Scott and Jolene were reluctant to act in the beginning, with Jolene even refusing a few auditions. But once the series started airing, they become central and powerful characters. Jolene acting is superb where she tries to show emotions, all the time keeping an unperturbed face that Vulcans have.

Scott acts as the perfect captain, leading his team through tough events without batting an eyelid. Wherever there is danger, he is the first to face it keeping his team behind him. In the end, he literally forms the United Federation and writes most of the rules for First Contact.

The Vulcans are not as perfect as they are shown in other series. They have factions, infighting, and are even xenophobic towards their own people who mind-meld.

Most of the series is focused on single episode stories, though some run to 2, 3 and even 4 episodes. In season 3, the writers introduce The Xindi as a species with 5 sub-sects. Enterprise’s (and Earth’s) interaction with The Xindi runs through the whole series. It starts with The Xindi destroying nearly 4K kilometre of land on Earth and killing 7 million people. Starfleet realizes that this may just be the beginning, and sends Enterprise to find the perpetrators and put a stop to it. Enterprise travels to a new part of the Galaxy called the Delphic Expanse where the laws of physics are routinely broken by anomalies.

One surprising addition is Dr. Arik Soong in season 4. In 2154, Jonathan Archer of Enterprise ‘recruits’ Dr. Soong to capture genetically enhanced humans who had captured a Klingon Bird of Prey and massacred all the crew. The surprise is that Dr. Soong was played by Brent Spiner, who later went on to earn fame as Lieutenant Commander Data in Star Trek: The Next Generation.

Two episodes that seem out of place are ‘In a Mirror, Darkly’, and ‘In a Mirror, Darkly Part II’. In this, the writers explore the concept of parallel universes that were never carried forward seriously till Star Trek: Discovery. When the Vulcans discover Earth’s first Warp ship, they land on earth to meet with Jefram Cochrane, the inventor of the warp drive. Instead of welcoming the Vulcans, Jefram leads a pack of humans to attack the Vulcans and establish an Empire on Earth. The two episodes end with Hoshi Sato declaring herself as Earth’s Empress.

The last episode in Enterprise is called bizarre and appalling by many people including Jolene Blalock. In this, the final events of the Starship Enterprise are viewed as computer replays by Commanded Riker of Star Trek: The Next Generation. I found the episode to be quite apt where Commander Riker has short interviews with the main characters of The Enterprise to understand their mindset.

If you are a Star Trek fan and have missed Enterprise, please see it ASAP. If you have not seen Star Trek before but do like science fiction, watch this before you see any other series. This will give you a good introduction to the Star Trek world. A very enjoyable series, all in all.
 

amit11

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I too like Star Trek, and especially the original generation. Will check for the new one you mentioned.
 

venkatcr

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Could you please list all the series in order?
The TV Series

1. Star Trek: The Original Series (1966-1969) (Seasons 1-3)
2. Star Trek: The Animated Series (1973-1975) (22 Episodes)
3. Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987–1994) (Seasons 1-7)
4. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993–1999) (Seasons 1-7)
5. Star Trek: Voyager (1995–2001) (Seasons 1-7)
6. Star Trek: Enterprise (2001–2005) (Seasons 1-4)
7. Star Trek: Discovery (2017– ) (Season 1)

The Movies

1. Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979)
2. Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan (1982)
3. Star Trek III: The Search for Spock (1984)
4. Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home (1986)
5. Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989)
6. Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991)
7. Star Trek: Generations (1994)
8. Star Trek: First Contact (1996)
9. Star Trek: Insurrection (1998)
10. Star Trek: Nemesis (2002)
11. Star Trek (2009)
12. Star Trek Into Darkness (2013)
13. Star Trek Beyond (2016)

As I said before, if you watching Star Trek for the first time, see Star Trek: Enterprise first. Then you can follow the order shown above.

Movies - again watch in the order of release data. Just remember, the characters of the TV series and movies are intricately linked.

Cheers
 

venkatcr

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I did binge watch Enterprise. I plan to do the same with Deep Space Nine and Voyager. These are the two series I have not seen. After that I have to wait for a new series to start. :D
 

raghupb

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DS9 is quite different from the other story lines and is interesting.
Voyager is OK, if you can get past the Captain's voice (heavy nasal twang).

<Off topic> There is a relatively new space/sci-fi show "The Expanse" on Amazon Prime. It is very engaging and visuals are great.

Cheers,
Raghu
 
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