Saturday, June 29, 2013

The Communicator

** (2 stars out of 5)
"The Communicator", you'll be astonished to discover, is an episode about a communicator!

Remember how, long ago in the future, Dr. McCoy accidentally left a communicator behind on a planet of highly imitative jerks dressed as Chicago Mobsters? Well, what if Lt. Reed did that exact thing on a planet covered in G.I. Joes? Well, this. This happens. You watch it. You yawn, then you move on. Or if you're a saner person than me, you just don't watch it twice.

Archer and Reed are caught and questioned and agonize over what to say. Will they be mistaken for almighty golden gods or simple slobs who misplaced their iPhone? Somehow, they decide that rather than risk telling the truth, they will let the nervous Allies believe they are evil Germans. Since there is no Prime Directive to lay down their lives for, and the arrival of aliens had a POSITIVE effect on humanity, one wonders WHY they'd choose this!? It seems the one course of action most likely to get them starring roles on Alien Autopsy.

 Although it never gets much more creative than the title, I have to give it props for not simply beaming the prisoners out of Colonel Grat's, uh... I mean Colonel Gosis' clutches. There's a whole subplot where Trip learns to use the stolen Suliban cloaking ship and accidentally turns his hand invisible. It's worth a chuckle and a fart.

For myself, I can't watch the scene where Archer and Reed are discovered to be the only ones on the planet who'd need an eyebrow plucking, not because the beating is too violent, but because the unmasking is just silly. Who looks at a stick-on forehead that comes off like an old band-aid and draws the conclusion "Surgically Altered"? WHAT surgery? If you knocked off someone's hat, would you assume you'd just beheaded them?

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