Enterprise was promoted as the show that would explain
how the Star Trek universe all began. The first mission,
the first ship, the first crew, the first look into deep space.
The show was going to be gritty, tense and the embodiment
of the frontier spirit. So has season one measured up or has
Enterprise warped off into some all too familiar space?
Anthony Clark looks back at the first season...
is immediately obvious in Enterprise's
first year, was how quickly the show's writers lost interest
in Mayweather. The grinning 'boomer' gets sidelined from halfway
through the run and barely registers at all by the end of
the season which is a blessing as the character is wetter
than a wet thing on a wet day - and he's the only human character
that's supposed to have experience of deep space! Would a
man brought up on freighters, facing daily dangers from pirates
really be so immature? And that stupid grin...
mastery of the pout is clear from her first scene as is her
permanent state of barely-suppressed hostility towards her
human compatriots - and we believed that Vulcans don't do
emotions. Get away with your silly notions. But at least T'Pol
had an excellent comedy costume and a 'keep 'em in place in
up who can tell Trip and Malcolm apart if they don't speak.
And hands up who thinks Hoshi is almost as wet at Mayweather.
Oh dear, a poor showing for both suggests that maybe the Enterprise
bridge crew should be stocking up on character traits for
the next season. But at least down in sick bay there's the
ever-reliable Nelix hamming up his lines to great comedy effect.
What's not explained is how he travelled back in time after
Voyager got home.
what of Captain Archer? Reliable, calm under pressure, friendly
and honest to the last, here's a character that has so few
rough edges that you'd almost believe he was perfect. And
that's just dull. Surely, the first captain in to deep space
would be a fearless explorer with fire in his/her belly, not
a slightly pedestrian do-gooder - albeit with a nice square
original Star Trek was a far better depiction of life
on the frontier. Chief engineer Scott always making do with
little more than string, a doctor who didn't know all the
answers when confronted with a new alien disease and Captain
Kirk, a firebrand driven as much by instinct as duty. And
let's not forget the show's humorous interplay between Spock,
Kirk and McCoy. All these ingredients should be a part of
the Enterprise matrix but instead we're presented with
something far less interesting - a show with every sharp edge
softened and every emotion suppressed.
don't be fooled by the Temporal Cold War plot - it's neither
interesting or exciting if only because our understanding
of it is so slight it's impossible to have a feeling for it
one way or another. Just try explaining it to anyone who hasn't
seen the show and you'll quickly realise that it's not much
of a thriller: "A dark force from the future is using genetically
modified troops for no good." But as we have absolutely no
idea what's at stake or why we can't care.
should be exciting roller coaster ride across a new frontier
- instead, we're presented with a group of dull characters
looking at stuff. If the show is to work it must be less field
trip and more strange, new worlds. And as for the title song...