'The Communicator' Review Round-UpBy Lisa
November 21, 2002 - 2:55 AM
See Also: 'The Communicator' Episode Guide
Was it an intelligent episode about problems of contact with other species, or a display of chronic stupidity by the Enterprise crew? Opinion seems pretty even about last week's 'The Communicator'.
Here's a round up of comments about the episode to help you make up your own mind.
"Quantum and Reed attempt to pick up where 'A Piece Of The Action' left off," wrote Keckler at Television Without Pity. "But in the past. And without the funny voices, mannerisms, and Spocko in a zoot suit, helping Kirk drive a 'flivver.' If Bermaga were going to borrow from the past (again!), couldn't they at least have made it good? JUST THIS ONCE?!"
For the full review, follow this link.
Jamahl Epsicokhan focused on the lessons in the episode. "This episode shows exactly what can go wrong when interacting with alien cultures," he wrote. "On that level it's fairly effective. But the way it goes about it has me thinking that some forethought should've gone into this mission, rather than improvising solutions to a crisis that should never have been allowed to get so far out of hand. Archer needs to set some serious protocols to avoid these sort of situations."
In his complete review, the episode is awarded 2 1/2 stars.
Matt D at Trek 5 enjoyed the episode in spite of himself. "'Enterprise' bounced back this week with a rock solid adventure that paired André Bormanis's smart, serious teleplay with first class direction by James Contner. After the tragedy of 'The Seventh' last week, I kept trying to convince myself that I was bored, but my imagination was telling me otherwise."
At this page, the episode is awarded a Warp 4 rating.
ScoopMe's CJ Carter had an interesting observation on T'Pol. "The E-Team from earlier in the season has definitely returned. Everyone is doing their jobs and doing them competently - although for once T'Pol is the one making the dubious choices. The First Officer's attempt to contact the landing party unwittingly exposed her captain, and her later rescue attempt further contaminated the culture. Not smart," sh wrote.
For the full review, click here.
O. Deus at TrekWeb had lots to say about the Prime Directive.
The episode is supposedly about the importance of the Prime Directive, and although it's not openly referred to as such, Archer appears to have adopted it wholesale to the extent that he's willing to sacrifice Reed and himself to uphold it. It is rather odd that Archer would be more fanatical about the Prime Directive than later starship captains like Kirk and even Picard. It's hard to imagine either of these characters willing to let a member of his crew be killed outright, rather than doing what he could to save him. Even the Vulcans themselves weren't willing to go that far in "Carbon Creek." But despite a last minute plea to let Reed live, that's essentially what Archer is willing to do in "The Communicator."
For the full review, follow this link.
Mike at Trek 47 felt only able to give the episode 5 out of 10. "I don't know, maybe the Vulcans were right and these people have no business being out in space yet," he wrote. "There should be an episode coming back to this planet and seeing what damage they caused, but I doubt that it will happen. While this episode was mildly entertaining, the stupidity of the Enterprise crew makes me wonder what the writers are thinking."
Read his complete thoughts on the episode here.
Over at Monkee's Place, Monkee felt that we need to see more of the issues raised here.
Repercussions, please. Wow! If ever an episode cried out for a follow-up! The amount of cultural contamination here is staggering. Even without the hard evidence (and we have no reason to believe there aren't other photographs and x-rays elsewhere), there were dozens of witnesses! It's likely that these people now believe that their enemy is far more powerful than they ever could have imagined. Will they back off? Will they plan a preemptive strike? Or will they study other copies of the x-rays and decide that these were aliens after all, and what will they make of THAT? No matter what happens, we can be sure the natural progression of events on their planet has been irrevocably altered. After 'The Andorian Incident' aired last fall, I hoped fervently for a follow-up, and actually got one! 'Andorian Incident' and 'Shadows of P'Jem' were two highlights of the first season for me. So I'm hopeful that we haven't seen the last of this story, either.
In her full review, she gives the episode 9 out of 10.