With time of the essence for tracking down the Xindi weapon, Archer decides to take Enterprise through a patch of reconfigured space. There’s just one problem – conscious humans can’t survive the journey. With that in mind, Phlox puts the crew in the coma and prepares to spend four days tending to the ship with Porthos at his side. But Phlox is used to being surrounded by people, and the solitude starts getting to him.
I’d have more time for this episode if it wasn’t essentially an exact duplicate of Voyager’s One. In that episode, Seven of Nine is left to tend the ship alone because her unique physiology means she can stay awake whilst the rest of the crew must sleep. As a former Borg drone, she is used to hearing the voices of the many, and certainly highly averse to being alone. What follows is an increasingly hallucinatory series of events, culminating in a dramatic and risky use of ship’s systems to clear the affected space.
In Doctor’s Orders, Phlox is left to tend the ship alone (spoilers: T’Pol is a hallucination) because his unique physiology means he can stay awake whilst the rest of the crew must sleep. As a Denobulan, he is used to living in densely packed population centres, and is certainly highly averse to being alone. What follows is an increasingly hallucinatory series of events, culminating in a dramatic and risky use of ship’s systems to clear the affected space.
Yes, episodes of Star Trek have ripped each other off before, but never quite to this extent. Given that One came first, and that Seven of Nine is a far more likeable character than Phlox, I of course prefer Voyager’s take on this storyline. The only thing this episode can really offer us is Porthos being his usual cute self.
How to figure out T’Pol isn’t really there
- I know T’Pol isn’t the most social of people, but there’s no way Phlox would have left her alone for two days.
- Why would Trip have bothered teaching Phlox how to work things in Engineering if T’Pol was going to be awake?
- T’Pol never touches or interacts with anything.
- T’Pol’s emotional control is actually slipping because of her Trellium-D use, but of course Phlox wouldn’t know that.
- T’Pol knows that Phlox told Hoshi that Denobulans think hallucinating can be a healthy thing. Of course, Hoshi might have mentioned this to her, but it seems unlikely.
Points of Note
- Phlox’s good friend Dr Lucas has been recalled to Earth because of the Xindi attack.
Summary – Doctor’s Orders: A remake of One, starring Phlox as Seven of Nine.