Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Fight or Flight

*** (3 stars out of 5)
Before we get started, I neglected to complain yesterday about T'Pol's dialogue in 'Broken Bow'. Since writers Berman and Braga also wrote today's story, I will indulge myself anyway!

After slapping Trip down when he's trying to help in what looks a hell of a lot like two violent altercations, the Vulcan schoolmarm launches into an explanation of why the second one is not what he suspects. Then I imagine she MEANT to tell him to think more objectively, or to use more objectivity, but what she SAYS is: "You should learn to objectify other cultures." That can't be right, can it? Treat them as things without regard to their dignity? If only T'Pol wasn't such a know-it-all, maybe she could ask Hoshi for an English lesson.

But not today: today Hoshi is taking care of the sickly slug she has adopted! It soon becomes a metaphor for Ensign Sato's own utter unhappiness with space travel. And who could blame her? Their ACTUAL first contact is with a dozen corpses being drained for their arousing fluids by some unseen Lymph Vampires!

And speaking of arousing, Dr. Phlox is both avuncular and a little too interested in exploring humans. Or at least watching them explore each other! Still, he's following (or is that establishing?) a long and venerable tradition of pervy Starfleet doctors. How did Bev Crusher manage to avoid this terrible curse?

Since Stardates aren't a thing yet, we discover that it's May 6, 2151. Thanks to Hoshi's brilliantly unlikely ability to translate brand-new languages merely by hearing a few spoken words, first contact is established with the Axanar: androgynous Newt-Manoids with a four century lifespan. Which could mean one of these "guys" would later be killed by Starfleet's Captain Garth or pin a peace medal on Captain Kirk. (Probably not both, though.)

"Fight or Flight" begs the question: who has a SLUG for a pet? Wouldn't you rather be sneaking cheese to an adorable puppy than watching a banana slug ooze across something? Hey, I'm not being mean here. I'm just following that sanctimonious Vulcan chick's advice to objectify other cultures.

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