Sunday, May 26, 2013

Renaissance Man

*** (3 stars out of 5)
They can build hulls that keep out the cold of space, and shields that withstand the heat of a star's corona, but they can't make an opera-proof wall so Captain Janeway can sleep through a pleasure cruise with the Doctor.  But then again, why would you want to?  The Doctor is a marvel and a delight!

He can change his shape and voice, run circles around humans without tiring, leap through walls or run UP them, and yet these skills are only deployed today in the service of the Sontarans... uh, Hierarchy renegade Mole Men. With Janeway hostage, the Doctor must take on every key role on the ship, knocking unconscious those he impersonates and hiding them in morgue drawers. Yet sneaking around falsifying B'Elanna's command codes is easier than falsifying a kiss with Tom Paris and his potato salad breath.

Speaking of potatoes, can Janeway and her one-man hologram band outwit the two dumbest spuds in the quadrant, and the 140 smartest? And when the effort takes everything the EMH has, and he thinks he's about to perish, can he embarrass himself any more than he already has?

"Renaissance Man" is an adequate, slightly comic run-around that asks for nothing and gives about the same. But what the hell! If ever Star Trek feels underwhelming I just flip the metaphorical dial for a minute and glance at what a soul-curdling mess is everything else on TV. Then I count my lucky Star Treks.

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