Star Trek: Enterprise: Regeneration   Rewatch 
July 1, 2019 3:33 AM - Season 2, Episode 23 - Subscribe

Proof The Thing should be required viewing before digging in the Arctic, even in Star Trek's utopian future.

Memory Alpha has absolutely piles to say, here, maybe the most I've ever seen for one episode:

Background information
Production history
> Filmed: 27 February 2003 - 8 March 2003
> Second unit filming: 11 March 2003
> Premiere airdate: 7 May 2003

Production Edit
> When the assimilated transport attacks the Tarkalean freighter, and later Enterprise, it is seen cutting a circular chunk into their hulls. This was an allusion to the TNG episode "Q Who", when the Borg take a cylindrical cross-section of the USS Enterprise-D. The writers had initially hoped to show the cylinder being tractored away from the Tarkalean freighter, but this effect was deemed too expensive. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Because of David Livingston's often quick directing style, the filmed episode was several minutes too short. Several scenes had to be written in including the scene with Reed and Phlox in the armory talking about the weapons of the Borg, the phase-pistol efficiency test scene with Reed and Alex in the armory, and the scene in the base camp with Rooney scanning the debris of the sphere. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> However, when confronted with the script some production (fan) staffers were initially less than enamored, or as Production Illustrator John Eaves has put it, he being called upon to design Arctic One and its subsequent "borgification", "During Season 2 of Enterprise we got wind of a future script #49 called "Regeneration". Everyone in the art dept.. started to read the little teaser and we all gasped in Horror at about the same time, THE BORG!!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!. We all were not feeling to happy about this new TNG alien showing up in an episode of Enterprise before Kirk... well this will throw all lines of trek history out the window. A few days later the first script arrived and reluctantly we all went to our desks and read away... Hey this is OK I thought It does work and it ties into Trek history as defined in "First Contact". As you recall The Borg sphere went back in time to destroy the Phoenix warp ship thus changing earths history and killing the threat of Humanity in the future. The Sphere gets fired upon by the Enterprise-E and the evil plot is eliminated... Now we are working on Enterprise and this new story picks up on the debris from the sphere being discovered in Antarctica. like "the Thing" once thawed out the Borg go back to doing what they do best! Assimilation! My job on this one was to create an Arctic exploration vessel that makes the discovery and later becomes Borgified. The first sketch is high profile vessel that I thought when Borged could form a cube. This idea was passed on and the second sketch got the approval. The ship is lightly based on a stylized snow mobile. Once Borged it goes thru a variety of changes and this second sketch try’s to convey on of the stages of coverage. Pierre over at Eden modeled this one (...)"
> Arctic One as it appeared in the beginning and borgified was illustrated by John Eaves and rendered in CGI by Pierre Drolet.
> The ENT Season 2 Blu-ray features the special "Outtakes" in which two scenes from "Regeneration" can be seen from a behind the scenes view. The first scene includes the talk between Archer and Tucker in engineering and the second scene includes some goofing around in sickbay with Scott Bakula, Dominic Keating, John Billingsley, and Paul Scott.
> The second season Blu-ray release also features seven production stills from "Regeneration" in the special "Photo Gallery". These shots include David Livingston on set, approaching Borg drones in a corridor, the three Arctic scientists, Reed climbing up the ladder, and stills of Vaughn Armstrong, Brian Avery, and Mark Major.

> The simulated snow for the Arctic Circle set was previously used as salt for the Rura Penthe set in the second season episode "Judgment". (Star Trek Monthly issue 108, p. 39)
Among the debris in the Arctic Circle is a filming model of the USS Enterprise-E's front saucer section, originally created for the crash sequence in Star Trek Nemesis. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> The maintenance shaft sets were later re-used as corridor sets of the USS Defiant in the episodes "In a Mirror, Darkly" and "In a Mirror, Darkly, Part II" and of the Romulan drone ship in "Babel One", "United", and "The Aenar". ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)

Props and costumes
> The arctic gear suits seen in this episode were designed by Robert Blackman. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> The medical scanner of the Arctic Team was a re-use of Daniels' Temporal Observatory device from "Cold Front" and was also sold off. [17]
> The remote control used by Reed at the end was previously used by Trip Tucker in the episode "Marauders".

Cast and characters
> Bonita Friedericy, who played Rooney in this episode, is the wife of Phlox actor John Billingsley.
> In an audio commentary for "Regeneration" on the ENT Season 2 Blu-ray, Friedericy and Billingsley joked that Friedericy got the part of Rooney by sleeping with Tucker actor Connor Trinneer. In reality, Friedericy auditioned for the role of Rooney, but when she walked into the room to audition, Star Trek: Enterprise creators and Executive Producers Rick Berman and Brannon Braga pretended not to know her. "It was very unnerving, because I'm very shy and I didn't know whether I should say hello or not," Friedericy explained. "So, I sort of waved at them and they both kind of looked distastefully at me, and looked up at the ceiling and then they said, 'Go,' and I thought I wasn't gonna get it, and it was sad, but then I got the call and I got it."
> On the set, Friedericy was referred to as a baby Borg. "I was called the baby Borg because Borg are never little, and I'm five-foot-three," she remarked. Applying the Borg makeup to Friedericy for Rooney's assimilated appearance took five-and-a-half hours. This was longer than usual because the makeup team, not having done any Borg for a while, initially made a mistake with Rooney's Borg makeup. To portray the assimilated Rooney, Friedericy also wore a Borg costume that Roxann Dawson had previously worn, in VOY: "Unimatrix Zero". Once Friedericy was made to look Borg, it was time for her to go before the cameras as the assimilated Rooney. > Filming the character's death scene didn't require a stunt performer. "I was really pleased with myself," she reminisced, "because they squibbed me [repeatedly], and I did my own stunt." Each time Friedericy performed the stunt sequence, John Billingsley applauded her from off-camera. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Writer Mike Sussman expressed the remarkable likeness of Phlox actor John Billingsley and his stunt double Vince Deadrick, Jr. who not only was the Stunt Coordinator on Enterprise but also the regular stunt double of Jonathan Archer actor Scott Bakula. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Background actor Louis Ortiz played one of the two Arctic Borg drones. He also played several Borg drones in the prequel, Star Trek: First Contact, and appeared numerous times as a Borg in Star Trek: Voyager. On set he was known for teaching actors how to move like an alien and behave like a specific species. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> This episode marks stunt actor Paul Scott's first Trek appearance. He will make two more in the third and fourth season, though uncredited.

> This episode is a sequel to the events of Star Trek: First Contact. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> The Bynar species, which first appeared in TNG: "11001001", are mentioned in this episode by Phlox as being an example of an admirable use of cybernetic technology.
> The oft-mentioned Tarkaleans, first named but not seen in DS9: "Past Prologue", make their first and only on screen appearance in this episode.
> The invasion that Archer predicts does indeed happen in the 24th century, in 2366, 213 years after the events in "Regeneration", in TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds".
> This episode contains the only mention of the Delta Quadrant in the entire run of Star Trek: Enterprise.
> This episode shares a similarity with "Acquisition" in that the antagonists remain unnamed, though they are a well established species within the Trek universe. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Reed's line about shooting the Borg drones with holographic bullets was an in-joke by the episode writers. In the holodeck scene in Star Trek: First Contact, drones could indeed be killed by holographic bullets, assuming the holodeck safety protocols were turned off. ("Regeneration" audio commentary, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Archer's method of physically disabling one of the Borg, by tearing some of its wires out, is reminiscent of the way Captain Picard disabled a Borg in TNG: "Descent, Part II".
> This episode includes the only appearances of the Borg in Enterprise. Similarly, the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine pilot episode, "Emissary", was the only appearance of the Borg in that series, although the USS Defiant was among the defense fleet against the Borg during the Battle of Sector 001 in Star Trek: First Contact.
> For the sequence outside of Starfleet Headquarters, a recurring moving matte painting was chosen. This shot was filmed way back during the first season and also appeared in the episodes "Shadows of P'Jem", "Shockwave, Part II", "First Flight", and "Home".
> The episode introduces a potential predestination paradox into the overall Borg story arc. At the end of the episode, it is revealed that the assimilated Earth freighter dispatched a subspace message to the Delta Quadrant. T'Pol theorized it would take at least two hundred years for the message to reach the Delta Quadrant, implying that this may be how the Borg Collective originally learned of Humanity's existence (it is worth noting there is no evidence the signal was actually received). If the message was received, it may explain why, in the 24th century, the Borg specifically wanted Captain Jean-Luc Picard to speak for them and why they sent at least one vessel to the vicinity of Federation space, destroying several Romulan and Federation outposts in 2364, in the episode "The Neutral Zone". A series of incidents with the Federation followed over the next several years, culminating in the Battle of Sector 001, wherein a Borg sphere travelled to the 21st century in an effort to assimilate Humanity in the past, as seen in Star Trek: First Contact. The sphere was destroyed, and several drones from the vessel were frozen in an Arctic glacier in 2063, which were uncovered by the Arctic scientists 90 years later in "Regeneration", starting the causality loop all over again. It is also worth noting that if the signal which was sent by the Earth transport was not received by the Borg, then the Borg's first contact with the Federation and Humans would have been by way of assimilation of the USS Raven in 2356. If, however, the signal was received then the information in the transmission would have been 200 years out of date by the time the Borg received it.
> The ending of the episode is notably similar to that of the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Conspiracy", in which the crew of another starship named Enterprise fight and destroy a hostile alien species, though not before said species managed to transmit a signal giving the location of Earth, and raising the fear that more of the aliens could invade again someday. Interestingly, the parasitic beings featured in that episode were originally intended to be agents of what would become the Borg, though no on-screen connection was ever suggested, due to it being dropped in light of budget constraints and the 1988 Writer's Strike.

> The episode has a much darker theme than other installments of Enterprise, reinforced by the music score composed by Brian Tyler. This is Tyler's second and last contribution to the second season, the first being "Canamar".
> The soundtrack "Star Trek: Enterprise Collection", released in 2014, featured five pieces from "Regeneration" on disc four - fan favorites:
Borg Crash Site/Borg Awakening (3:13)
Archer Tells Plan/Distress Call/Phlox Attacked (3:10)
Hive Mind/Borg Hunt/Dead in the Water (6:43)
Borg Attack/Borg Attack 2 (7:23)
Message in a Bottle/Postponed (0:58)

> There was some controversy among fans over the fact that the Borg drones omitted their standard greeting ("We are the Borg") when they hailed Enterprise, conveniently keeping Starfleet in the dark about the identity of the cybernetic species. In their podcast commentary, the writers' justified this by pointing out that the Borg in TNG: "Q Who" never said "We are the Borg" when they encountered the Enterprise-D, nor did they use that catchphrase when they confronted Picard's ship again in TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds".
> According to Friedericy and Billingsley, many fans thought this episode "violated the timeline" and that it was a "jumping the shark" episode. Sussman mentioned that there were many concerns to bring back the Borg to Enterprise as it was the wrong era. ("Regeneration" audio commentaries, ENT Season 2 Blu-ray)
> Manny Coto cited this as one of two episodes, from the first two seasons of Star Trek: Enterprise, that he "especially enjoyed", the other such episode being "Cogenitor". (Star Trek Magazine issue 118, p. 25)
> The 2008 calendar Star Trek: Ships of the Line has the January cover by John Teska, titled "Things From Another World". This cover featured the crashed Borg sphere and the transport Arctic One from "Regeneration".
> On the broadcast of this episode on Channel 4 in the U.K. several scenes were edited including Phlox being injected by nanoprobes and his attempt at curing himself with radiation.
> The events of this episode form the basis of the story for the 2006 non-canon game Star Trek: Legacy. A Vulcan scientist named T'Uerell is assigned to study the Borg debris and after learning their true nature, injects herself with Borg nanoprobes. Armed with knowledge of future events, she spends the next two centuries building her forces and waiting for the opportunity to seize control of the Borg Collective in order to use them to bring a state of total logic to the Alpha Quadrant.

Memorable quotes
"There's no reason to assume they're hostile."
"They don't exactly look friendly."
- Drake and Moninger, discussing the frozen drones

"You seem a little jumpy."
"Cybernetic corpses, digging through frozen remains in the middle of the night. Why would I be jumpy?"
- Drake startles Rooney after they find Borg in the Arctic

"Buried in the ice for a century."
"Hard to believe anything could survive."
"Handsome devil."
- Tucker and Archer viewing images of the Borg taken in the Arctic

"What sort of people would replace perfectly good body parts with cybernetic implants?"
"You, of all people, should be open-minded about technology."
"Well, I don't have a problem with it... so long as it stays outside of my skin."
- Reed and Phlox

"Use extreme caution, Lieutenant, their physical strength has been enhanced. It is critical that you do not let them touch you."
- Phlox, having been injected with nanoprobes

"... you will be assimilated. Resistance is futile."
- The Borg

"I doubt there's any immediate danger. It would take at least 200 years for a subspace message to reach the Delta Quadrant, assuming it's received at all."
"Sounds to me like we've only postponed the invasion, until what... the 24th century?"
- T'Pol and Archer

This Week In:
* Pointless STO Comparisons: Basically endless. The Borg were the original endgame villains in the MMO, though they have suffered substantial villain decay in-game. (One of the original major Borg encounters is now used as the punching bag to measure how much damage players do.)
* Vulcans Are Superior: Didn’t see any, but I think Phlox is the only individual we've ever seen cure himself of Borg assimilation, so maybe Denobulans were superior this time. (Wouldn't be the first instance.)
* Non-Catastrophic Equipment Failures: The warp plasma thing was instigated externally, so unfair to count.
* Aliens Outclass Enterprise: The Borg obviously need no introduction there.

Poster’s Log:
This is probably a divisive episode.

Taken on its own, I actually liked the viewing experience: this is ENT trying to be a horror movie and mostly hitting the right beats. Creepy Arctic dig, dumb decisions (like the failure to quarantine the Tarkaleans), hunting monsters in tubes and so on. All pretty classic. I think it worked better than a lot of their other attempts to try on a genre.

Taken as a Borg episode, I feel it’s a classic example of why villain decay occurs. I already wrote a lengthy essay about it during Unity though, one that references Regeneration, and I don’t think anything’s really changed. The tl;dr is: the more powerful the Borg got in each successive story, the more that they had to be undercut or nerfed because it became increasingly difficult to tell interesting stories about confronting them. Regeneration isn't the worst example, but it is the culmination of many poor decisions made in VOY.

So... mixed feelings: decent horror outing versus kind of a sad note for one of Trek’s most iconic antagonists, victims of their own success.

Curious what everyone else made of it, or if anybody had a third way to consider those events.
posted by mordax (12 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
This is one of my favorite episodes of ENT and one I will rewatch every time when skimming the episode list on Netflix. I love a Borg story and the crew of the Enterprise are in way over their heads here. That they managed to hold their own is a triumph.
posted by Servo5678 at 5:47 AM on July 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

Yeah, I actually went back and rewatched this one to make sure, and I think it's a solid Borg story and a good horror space show.
I don't really think I agree with you on the Borg decay, but I haven't seen VOY at all, so I can't really argue (tho I will), but the way I see it is that the Borg aren't any stronger in Q Who, they are just a total unknown with what seems at that time to be their version of a flagship. They outmatch the Entreprise, which they see as a mere bit of tech to take over, and then Picard begs Q and they flash away, and now the Borg have a new, more important target, the captain of that ship that somehow got away. That's why they shift into wanting to take over people, because they were beaten and didn't know it was Q who did it.
Like I said, haven't seen VOY, so I don't know what happens in that, but on its own and as part of the TNG Borg canon, I think it does a good job of making them a terrifying and almost overwhelming force. Two of them frozen in ice for a hundred years upgrade a science shuttle into a warship that does serious damage to Earth's flagship, and it's only through some trickery and daring do that they get out of it.

I actually really liked all the references and call-backs in this one, I really like seeing a tarkelean, that was a long time coming, and I'm a dead sucker for anything that involves exploring old ruined space ships, the first act was candy for me.

I am however utterly fucking baffled how by the Enterprise time we haven't explored the poles well enough to find a danged borg sphere. Even right now we'd notice the wreckage of a 600 meter wide space ship in the arctic, let alone after 100 years of Vulcan aid and restriction from further exploring space. Really, they didn't use Vulcan-tech to blanket the Earth in satellites? I also enjoy the polar bear mention in a sad way.

I also liked how everyone pretty much got to do their job really well this episode, with no one being demeaned, and at no point did I feel bad for any of the actors.

Solid Trek in a series that rarely manages that.
posted by neonrev at 6:28 AM on July 1, 2019 [3 favorites]

The episode is not badly done at all; well written and executed. From a technical standpoint, very solid.

What I was left with, however, was very much a sense of "been there, done that" - this might be the first time that Starfleet encounters the Borg, but it isn't for the majority of the audience. All of the expected beats of a Borg episode are covered, right down to beaming over to their ship to destroy some equipment to force them to slow down and/or stop (hello, Best of Both Worlds) and there is nothing new here. There are no chances taken.

In short, for me, this is one of those episodes where I feel like the studio execs didn't trust Enterprise enough to allow it to be it's own show; it's importing villains and references from the other Treks to keep winking at the audience ("see? we know Trek!") while not really doing anything to give Enterprise a sense of identity separate from them.
posted by nubs at 6:35 AM on July 1, 2019 [1 favorite]

Bluntly, and this is grading on the ENT curve again, it was a palpable relief after "Cogenitor" because of what a mess that episode was. Of course, it was yet another [those guys] episode before official first contact with [those guys] (see "Acquisition" and "Minefield"), but it does make sense that the debris would be there from the destruction of the sphere in Star Trek: First Contact--the movie doesn't say that the sphere debris fell to Earth, but it doesn't say that it doesn't--and I can accept that it wasn't discovered until recently because the First Contact events happened around the end of a world war. There's a rich historical precedent for encounters with people from other civilizations before quote-endquote official first contact--I may be in the last American generation who was originally taught to believe that Columbus discovered the Americas in any significant way--and we've already seen that the Raven (i.e. Annika Hansen/Seven of Nine and her parents) had previously encountered them before the events of "Q Who", not to mention that the Hansens may have found out about them from the refugee El-Aurians, including Guinan, who were escaping them when they were rescued by the Enterprise-B in Star Trek: Generations. So, it doesn't bother me so much that they've added United Earth running into the remnants of some hegemonic multi-species cybernetic civilization, the NX-01 filing a report on their encounter, and then everyone kind of forgetting about them over the next couple of centuries, whatever the El-Aurians could tell them about the beings who destroyed their civilization notwithstanding. Trek has often featured one-off civilizations, some of them very dangerous indeed (such as the triglobulin-collecting aliens of "Fight or Flight"), that are never encountered again. As for the episode itself, it was pretty tight, with the The Thing homage appropriate and not too obviously larcenous, and the running battle with the assimilated ship, and Phlox's personal battle against being assimilated; the latter made sense, even though they didn't explain why Denobulans were naturally resistant, because it's possible that the Borg just haven't assimilated a species like them up to that point.

My quibbles with the episode are mostly ten-percent stuff. The scene where the Jeffries tube panels are converted to Borg tech by the simple method of using assimilation tubules to shoot nanoprobes into them irritated me because it's dumb space magic. The whole Borg aesthetic is about creating cyborgs by the simplest, most brutal expedient: taking off a limb or an eye and grafting on whatever they happen to have laying around. They're extremely efficient recyclers. A better, less lazy way of telling that story would have been for them to have shown the assimilated Tarkaleans physically rearranging things and then for the green glow to have gradually come on, or have them sticking a data cable in themselves and downloading the Borg OS that way. Plus, the whole thing about their having to have set up the Borg coming to the Alpha Quadrant is also dumb, since we know that the Borg found out about the Federation in "Q Who" when the cube that they encountered (Thanks, Q!) cored out a sample of the saucer section, including eighteen crew members, which could have told them all that they needed to know, including where the Federation was and who their commanding officer was. A more compelling reason for them to have tried to contact the Collective was that they were effectively 24th-century drones that could have given the 22nd-century Collective a leap forward with whatever knowledge they might have with them. (I don't know how much information was stored in the nanoprobes--another reason why the space magic assimilation of the NX-01 bothered me so much--but the revived drones from the sphere may have had some info that survived the sphere's destruction and landfall.) Regardless of the easily-fixable errors, though, like I said, at least it wasn't "Cogenitor."
posted by Halloween Jack at 8:43 AM on July 1, 2019 [1 favorite]

This is one of my favorite episodes of ENT and one I will rewatch every time when skimming the episode list on Netflix

Yeah. This is the episode I've actually been looking forward to this season. I sound lukewarm, but if all of ENT had looked more or less like this, I'd have 80% fewer complaints at least.

I don't really think I agree with you on the Borg decay, but I haven't seen VOY at all, so I can't really argue (tho I will)

Hahaha. All good. :)

Seriously, I recommend checking out the Borg episodes of VOY sometime to get a look at what worked and what didn't for yourself. I liked some, hated others, but overall, it was just interesting to see what happened to the Borg in popular imagination over time. (And I mean, agree or disagree with me, you gotta be fascinated by it too. Half the reason Trek is interesting is that it has been on the air longer than some of us - myself included - have been alive, and we get to watch something like a myth change over time, right in front of us.)

What I was left with, however, was very much a sense of "been there, done that"

Mm. Fair.

Bluntly, and this is grading on the ENT curve again, it was a palpable relief after "Cogenitor" because of what a mess that episode was.

OMG yes. A weight lifted.

My quibbles with the episode are mostly ten-percent stuff.

As ever, I prefer your ideas about this to the actual show's. :)

Couple other random thoughts I had because I posted this super late and just plain forgot:

- John Billingsley is killer at body language. Phlox moves weird, and I do love it. (His commitment to this reminds me of the Borg drone in Drone, even though the motions are totally different.)
- Scott Bakula seems a lot more comfortable in this outing. His emoting/body language/etc. felt... dunno. Better to me? Dunno if anybody else thought so too.
posted by mordax at 9:29 AM on July 1, 2019 [3 favorites]

Scott Bakula seems a lot more comfortable in this outing. His emoting/body language/etc. felt... dunno. Better to me? Dunno if anybody else thought so too.

I thought everybody seemed more comfortable in this outing; I think part of that is down to the fact that this was an episode that was pretty much a horror movie - everyone knows the beats and when to hit them. The only conflict for Archer was in the "can you rescue them/no you can't" tension about the Tarklean crew - which really doesn't have a lot of tension in it, because it is a foregone conclusion.

Anyways, it was a solid episode, even if I didn't find it all that noteworthy. Then again, a straightforward solid episode at this point maybe should be considered noteworthy.
posted by nubs at 10:05 AM on July 1, 2019 [1 favorite]

This was indeed refreshingly competent. I noticed sharper, quicker editing and much more distinctive camerawork than ENT usually has. And Bakula (and others) did indeed seem more confident—certainly more emotionally in-sync with the events surrounding them. I bet at least some of that can be credited to the episode's director, David Livingston, one of the TNG/DS9/VOY stalwarts.

Likewise, the music was nice and dark and driving; a generic B&B-era Trek score would've been much worse.

this is one of those episodes where I feel like the studio execs didn't trust Enterprise enough to allow it to be it's own show; it's importing villains and references from the other Treks to keep winking at the audience ("see? we know Trek!") while not really doing anything to give Enterprise a sense of identity separate from them.

I'm positive that's part of what's happening here. OTOH, and maybe I was just in a generous mood for some reason, but on this rewatch I tried to imagine myself as a non-Trek-fan inspired to tune in to this one on UPN due to casual interest in and knowledge of the franchise (e.g. from having seen First Contact, or at least promotions for it). I think such a viewer might have been impressed overall by what they saw here. (Only to be DEpressed depending on which ENTs they followed it up with, but anyway)

Random tidbits:
- Great callout to the Bynars, a noteworthy species from one of the less-terrible early TNGs.
- Rootleaf, which Phlox feeds his Edosian slugs, is also what Yoda feeds Luke in The Empire Strikes Back. Phlox must have a supplier who makes trips to Dagobah.
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 11:20 AM on July 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

... okay, the rootleaf thing about killed me. Thank you.

Rootleaf: whether you're an aspiring Jedi or a humble nonsapient space slug, it's what's for dinner.
posted by mordax at 11:40 AM on July 1, 2019

I liked this a lot.

(Sorry, I've been watching and following, but sometimes I get to the conversation late, and it's often so negative that I just log off.)

I watched through this show about 8 years ago or so, so while I've seen this one before, I had totally forgotten what the ending was. I spent almost the entire running time thinking "This is too dire; how are they getting out of this? Shoot, I hope they don't get bailed out by the Future People. Oh, that's the only way they get bailed out, isn't it?" When that didn't happen, I was pleasantly surprised. The directing of this one may be the best action episode of the entire series if I remember correctly—I know I was on the edge of my seat in a way I don't encounter in almost any Trek episodes.

If I had to nit-pick, I thought it was weird that the Borg on Enterprise adapted to the phasers before the Borg on the ship, but that's just classic Comic Book Guy grousing.

I honestly think, going back to Borg lore aside, this is the best outing of the first couple of seasons.
posted by General Malaise at 4:20 PM on July 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

About five years ago I was working with a very smart young lady who was 21 or so. I mentioned the Borg and she had no idea what I was referring to. She knew Klingons, IIRC, but not the Borg. You will be assimilated, the Borg cube, all that stuff, she'd never heard of it. When I was growing up everybody knew about the Borg even if they didn't watch Trek, and it was depressing to learn that for Gen Z even major Trek stuff like the Borg had fallen into obscurity. (Of course this was pre-Discovery and all these other Trek shows that are in development, which have probably boosted Trek's profile with the youngsters. But even now a lot of them probably only know the Kurtzman/Abrams-verse and they've never checked out the classic stuff.)
posted by Ursula Hitler at 5:17 PM on July 1, 2019 [2 favorites]

(Sorry, I've been watching and following, but sometimes I get to the conversation late, and it's often so negative that I just log off.)

Sorry 'bout that, sincerely. :(

It's funny: I honestly remember this show being better than the rewatch is going. I think maybe it's because I have a lot of fond memories about S4. (For what it's worth, still looking forward to it.)

I honestly think, going back to Borg lore aside, this is the best outing of the first couple of seasons.

... that's probably true, actually.

When I was growing up everybody knew about the Borg even if they didn't watch Trek, and it was depressing to learn that for Gen Z even major Trek stuff like the Borg had fallen into obscurity.

This is a good point. I hadn't really thought about it: I'm so used to everybody here knows everything about Trek, especially since it's sort of the fandom's hat. But I remember the first time I met someone who hadn't ever seen the original Star Wars, and... gah.

We're getting old, aren't we?
posted by mordax at 5:49 PM on July 1, 2019 [3 favorites]

The best thing about the Borg is how their defenses adapt, which requires new tricks and often times straight up running away.

I liked how a borg guy summoned up a Hellraiser-like (what is the term for the borg space aesthetic? spooky space industrial?) interface out of the Enterprises engine panel.
posted by fleacircus at 5:39 AM on November 3, 2019

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