The Great Star Trek Enterprise Rewatch: Shockwave I+II

When a plasma discharge destroys a colony of 3500 people, it seems as if Enterprise’s shuttlepod is the likeliest culprit. On the advice of the Vulcan High Command, Starfleet plans to cancel Enterprise’s mission and recall the ship. Should Archer give up and return to Earth with his tail between his legs, or can the crew of Enterprise discover who was really responsible for the accident?

Star Trek has come up with some excellent season finale/opener combos in its time. Shockwave is not one of them. Which isn’t to say it’s particularly bad, but neither does it stand out. It’s a functional, even workmanlike feature-length episode, which dutifully ticks all the boxes. There’s the obligatory cliffhanger, plenty of space battles, even the return of the shady comic book villain who directs events from the future. In the book of how to write season finales, this would be the worked example.

Franchise nods

  • Daniels mentions a statue commemorating the birth of the Federation to Archer.
  • Archer comes across a book on the Romulan Star Empire in the 31st century library.

Points of Note

  • It’s vitally important to return Archer to his correct time in order to fix the timeline, but no one seems to care about the impact on history of losing those 3500 colonists who were never meant to die. I guess now that the colony has been destroyed, Enterprise is officially following a different timeline to the rest of Star Trek.
  • Previously, Daniels said that Earth only existed in his time ‘in a manner of speaking’. When he is with Archer on the altered 31st century Earth, he describes ‘his’ Earth as if it were just a normal, physical location. Unless of course he was referring to a holodeck simulation of Earth or something.
  • The Suliban are meant to be genetically enhanced super-soldiers, and yet they are easily defeated by Archer, T’Pol and Trip.
  • Going back to Silik’s original ‘punishment’ in the pilot, what was the point of removing his genetic enhancements and thus making him less effective at his job? He already failed once, so why intentionally make it harder for him? Yes, I know – bad guy logic.
  • Why did Silik only torture T’Pol, who as a Vulcan was going to be more resistant to interrogation than any of the human crew? Of course the junior crew were less likely to know anything, but he could have had a go with Trip.

Summary – Shockwave: Adequate series finale with some gratuitous topless Hoshi.

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