The Great Star Trek Enterprise Rewatch: Countdown

The reptilians have captured Hoshi, with the aim of coercing her to decrypt the third set of launch codes they need in order to launch the weapon. Meanwhile, Archer works with the primates and arboreals to try to get the Xindi aquatics on their side, in the hopes that this joint alliance will be able to stop the reptilians and insectoids.

I have to admit that, by this point, I’m just biding my time until the Xindi arc ends – or maybe even until Enterprise ends. I found myself more interested in playing 2048 than in actually engaging with this episode. I get that it should be the exciting conclusion to a storyline that’s been slowly building all season, but as with so much else on Enterprise, it’s just not connecting with me. Everything is grey and drab and I simply don’t care.

Notes and Observations

  • This episode marks the death of Major Hayes, even though to the casual observer it looks like he was transported away just before the shot hit him. I’m actually starting to get suspicious. Malcolm leered after Hawkins in the last episode, and then Hawkins dies. Malcolm and Hayes have clearly had a (sexual?) tension thing going on all season, and now Hayes is dead. Is Malcolm giving into to his desires and then killing his partners so that they can’t tell anyone?
  • I’ll say it again, Hoshi is specifically on Enterprise to be a linguistics expert. Are we supposed to swallow that this automatically makes her a cryptography guru as well? Her grasp of the aquatic Xindi language is surely no greater than that of anyone aboard the reptilian ship – she’s specifically said to be there to decrypt the launch codes. And of course in the past she’s done things like decrypt Vulcan messages.
    One could argue that, at a high level, translation and encryption/decryption are similar procedures. But you’d have to be beyond even Hoshi levels of amazing to be a prodigy at both – it basically puts her on a par with X-Men’s Cypher. I guess Hoshi could use her language skills to rapidly learn to program in the Xindi reptilian equivalent of python, and then just call whatever standard encryption libraries they have to hand.
  • T’Pol mentions that she is considering joining Starfleet, something which will happen in season four.

Summary – Countdown: In which Archer must make the longest possible word out of a selection of nine consonants and vowels.

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