**** (4 stars out of 5)
"Home". It's a great word, isn't it? Home at last. Home is the hunter. There's no place like home. What a breathtaking opening shot, too! That shuttlepod arcing in, throngs of adoring fans cheering the guys what brung peace in our time and suchlike. The command crew standing proudly while Captain Archer praises the ones who did all the actual sacrificing. The only part I don't understand is why they parked the shuttle ON STAGE between the audience and the podium. The premium seats probably can't SEE anything! Well, that's the convention experience for you.
Archer sends a shout-out to MACO General Casey, and I'm glad to hear the Casey military family is still fighting the good fight even after Mars Attacks.
Tucker visits T'Pol's hometown since his is a crater dustbowl, then realizes he had it pretty good. Vulcan's stark beauty and oppressive heat are its good qualities. T'Pol's mommy T'Les essentially guilts her daughter into marrying Koss after all, to save her own reputation and career. There's nothing like filial affection. And this is nothing like filial affection!
Speaking of alien jerks, a human bigot tries to bully Phlox at a bar, putting in his two credits on the subject of Starfleet handing out Earth's address so very blithely. (Although he phrases it more "Earth-billy" than I did.) When the punches are being doled out, Phlox stops everyone dead with shock by inflating his own head to look fierce. Go Denobula!
Speaking of guys with big heads, Jon Archer does a little soul searching (and underpants searching) on a mountain climbing vacation with fellow starship Captain Erika Hernandez.
"I lost something out there," he confesses, "And I don't know how to get it back."
Erika's got a gentle way of reminding him what Starfleet's meant to be all about.
Less airlock torture, more fun in your underpants.