Critics Praise 'Cogenitor'By Michelle
May 3, 2003 - 5:39 PM
See Also: 'Cogenitor' Episode Guide
The first reviews for last Wednesday night's Enterprise episode, "Cogenitor", have been posted online. Reviewers appreciated the tough moral dilemmas of the storyline and the performances of Connor Trinneer and Scott Bakula.
- Television Without Pity's Keckler gave Enterprise a grade of A for the second week in a row, praising the episode "aside from the glaring fact that [Archer] seems to pick and choose his ethics based on whether or not they go with his outfit". With trademark humor, Keckler scoffed at the "Stratopod Of Messy Male Stuff" and joked about "Mother Triperior" who slaps on a wimple and encourages the cogenitor "to climb every mountain until It finds It's dream. It really wants to climb mountains." But the tough love at the end impressed Keckler, whose full analysis can be found here.
- Over at TrekWeb, O. Deus returned from hiatus to observe that the inconsistencies in Enterprise as a whole make it difficult to appreciate the dilemmas presented by "Cogenitor":
In "Stigma" Archer self-righteously demanded a hearing for T'Pol from the Vulcan doctors but if the "Cogenitor" ever gets a similar hearing and a chance to defend her asylum request, we never see it. Instead, the Cogenitor asks Archer to be treated equally and he replies that he can't impose his notion of rights on her. That's a ridiculous response even by the standards of moral relativism.Like many Berman-Braga episodes, Deus wrote, this one "suffers from random characterization in that it has Archer adopt a viewpoint because it fits the plot rather than arising naturally from the character's attitudes. When Trip claims that he did what Captain Archer would have done, he's right on the nose and Archer's outrage at the suggestion is comical." More of this complex and interesting review may be found here.
- Michael Austin said that "Cogenitor" gave him "some hope that this series might turn around". He enjoyed seeing a species with different reproductive habits and who didn't immediately dislike humans on first sight: "I always found it hard to believe that humans were the only ones who were out in the galaxy to explore and meet new alien races." He also appreciated the non-preachy ending and character conflict. To learn why he gave the episode a grade of A, read Austin's review at Section 31.
- Monkee called "Cogenitor" a "brilliant, complex, troubling and profoundly sad" story that made her angry at many of the characters, even the cogenitor. "The cogenitor reminded me strongly of Charlie, the protagonist in 'Flowers for Algernon'", who "learned too much, too fast, and couldn't cope when it was abruptly taken away", Monkee wrote. "The loss at the end was brutal, if predictable." With the exception of the subplot involving Reed's seduction, which felt like unfortunate filler to her, she thought the writing and acting were all excellent and awarded the episode a 9.5/10 at her site.
- " Sometimes Berman & Braga can surprise us," wrote C.J. Carter at ScoopMe, who added that "Cogenitor" offered "a good case of Trek-based moral dilemmas" but "also brings to the fore some of the missteps that have happened over the past two seasons." Carter found Archer's ultimate decision "quite Picardian" but noted that most of his crew has only seen "the moralistic boy scout Archer. Who could blame them for not knowing where the line is?" Thus Carter was a bit troubled that Tucker wasn't punished concretely for his transgressions and does not really suffer the consequences of his actions. More of Carter's detailed analysis is at ScoopMe!.
- Paul Pytlik of Lowerdecks.com was one of few reviewers who really liked the Reed storyline, calling it "a welcome change of pace, placed in just the right spots to break up the 'Quest For Knowledge' of Tucker". He gave "Cogenitor" a score of 9/10 with praise for the writing, acting and lighting of the episode. "I think this is the first episode of Enterprise that really made me think, and the first that had [me] actively wondering how exactly it was going to end," wrote Pytlik, whose summary and analysis can be found here.