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HERC Reviews 1st ENTERPRISE of Sweeps!!

Enterprise 1.8 FAQ

What’s it called?

“Breaking the Ice.”

Who’s responsible?

Teleplay is credited to Maria & Andre Jacquemetton (“Relic Hunter,” “Jack of All Trades”).

What does TV Guide say?

“A Vulcan starship interferes with Archer's probe of an oversize comet in a smartly-scripted episode that highlights T'Pol's private turmoil. Early episodes have emphasized the tensions between humans and Vulcans, and no series character embodies that strife more than the icy T'Pol (Jolene Blalock). Here, circumstances force a character thaw when Trip (Connor Trinneer) becomes privy to the content of coded - and personal - messages sent by T'Pol to the Vulcan vessel Ti'Mir. Ti'Mir's captain (William Utay), meanwhile, is less than communicative with the suspicious Archer (Scott Bakula), who must swallow his pride when an emergency arises.”

Is TV Guide right about the “smartly-scripted” part?

It is. This is easily the best episode of “Enterprise” to air since its pilot, and die-hard fans of the “Trek” franchise are certain to embrace the direction this series takes as we soldier on into sweeps. Most gratifyingly, we begin at last to fully appreciate T’Pol’s fundamentally heroic nature.

Heroic nature? T’Pol?

This episode underscores the fact that the Enterprise’s science officer is easily the most Spock-like of the Vulcans we’ve met in this pre-Kirk era. And it becomes easier after this week to infer the respect she brings for the humans and their mission to seek out – and even embrace – cultures beyond their own.

What is TV Guide not telling us?

There’s a fascinating dinner scene with Archer, T’Pol, Trip and the Vulcan captain, Vanik, that encapsulates – and sheds all sorts of light on - the continued strain that categorizes the relationship shared by Earthers and Vulcanians.

What do we learn at this dinner?

That the Vulcans remain highly mistrustful of humanity and continue to withhold technology from them. The word “classified” comes up when Trip makes inquiries about the Vulcans’ warp drive; capable of zipping about at warp 6.5, Vulcan ships are far faster than anything available to Starfleet in this era. The same "c"-word comes up later when Archer inquires about the Vulcans’ strange “tractor beams."

Is it true, as rumored, that T’Pol has to choose between continuing aboard the Enterprise and marrying a nice Vulcan boy?

It is.

Is T’Pol’s betrothed to a doctor?

An architect. Tradition dictates that newlyweds cohabitate for at least one Vulcan year – and an architect aboard an exploration vessel is not logical.

What’s good?

The increasing sense of continuity, and the increasing sense that the producers have been holding back the better stories for sweeps. Also, one’s admiration for this show’s supporting cast grows with each episode, and it’s easy to be especially taken with what Jolene Blalock, Connor Trinnear and Linda Park bring to the party. Oh yeah, and the Vulcan ship is pretty cool-looking.

What’s not so good?

Bakula remains no Shatner. And to those who cry, “Thank Christ!” I counter only that one misses the keen wit and good-natured sense of irony I’ve long associated with his work as Kirk. Bakula just comes off as something akin to an impatient and irritable Boy Scout.

How does it end, spoiler boy?

Archer tells Vanik, “See you around” – and never learns what T’Pol sacrificed to stay aboard.

Herc’s rating for “Enterprise” 1.8?


The Hercules T. Strong Rating System:

  • ***** better than we deserve
  • **** better than most motion pictures
  • *** actually worth your valuable time
  • ** as horrible as most stuff on TV
  • * makes you quietly pray for bulletins

I warn you not to defy me!! Mmm cookies!!

I am – Hercules!!

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