Sunday, June 2, 2013

The Andorian Incident

**** (4 stars out of 5)
Some of the fun is leeched out of exploring if Those Darn Vulcans did all the star charting ages ago, but then again, Vulcan maps don't mention everything. There's a lot of strip club locations to fill in, for example. However, all the sepulchres and monasteries are clearly marked...

The one at P'Jem, for example, is a popular destination spot. Enterprise pulls up to the lovely computer-generated hacienda to order some quiet contemplation with a side of emotional purging from the monk's drive-in window.  They were beaten there by a quartet of bullies from that delightful Blue Man Group- the Andorians. Their First Contact with the "Pink Skins" goes poorly: as I said, they were beaten there.

The Andorians are convinced the holy Vulcans are spying on them. Of course, they must do their fair share of peeping, too, since they know a staggering amount about Vulcan sex, and it's a safe bet they didn't hear about it from the Vulcans. Creepy Tholos wants to put his knowledge into practice with his overnight hostage T'Pol . Fortunately, the only alien she's forced to endure is Archer. And that a mere cuddling up to her Captain for warmth, despite his stinky, stinky man stink.

Commander Shran uses the full tactical might of the Imperial Guard to punch Archer's face a lot and shatter communicators with rocks. Jeffrey Combs in yet another weird (and radical) make-up is always welcome, and Shran quickly becomes one of my favourite characters. Yes, he's got anger management issues, but let's call it righteous indignation and see how easily he becomes the hero of this tale. The punchy, punchy hero.

And, of course, behind the dusty old mummies, under the stairs, behind an unlocked door that says "Beware of the Sehlat", is the spy station. The Vulcans from U.N.C.L.E., looking sheepish. Shran is vindicated and departs with a twitch of his antennae and a "Nyah, nyah, told you so".

"The Andorian Incident" asks us to accept that Vulcans were not always paragons of virtue and honesty. I'm okay with that. Earthlings aren't all cut from the same cloth, so why should all Vulcans be saints? Dr. Phlox seems more in tune with the diversity tolerance that Mr. Spock embraced in the 2260's than the Vulcan characters, but it seems the Vulcans in this past age are frightened shut-ins with lots of telescopes and rifles pointed at the neighbours.

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