Star Trek 705: Storm Front

705. Storm Front

FORMULA: The Killing Game + Azati Prime + First Contact

WHY WE LIKE IT: The promise of an end to the Temporal Cold War.

WHY WE DON'T: Paradox blues.

REVIEW: Enterprise goes back to World War II, but time traveling aliens have changed history and helped the Nazis conquer a good chunk of the world. On the surface, it looks a lot like the Hirogen holodeck scenario from The Killing Game, with even one of the human Nazis making a repeat appearance. As the plot thickens however, we find a connection to the Temporal Cold War. Vosk, leader of a time-active faction, has stealthily escaped into the past, changed history and is destined to build a time tunnel from which he launches a full-out Temporal War, which has already destroyed the timeline. Don't think about the paradox too much (which includes the murder of Lenin which helped this Nazi victory in the first place), it's just what happens/happened/will happen. Daniels' last action before being all screwed up was to send Archer and Enterprise back to undo the Temporal War, which in turns undoes Lenin's assassination, and thus, even this alternate WWII. Like I said, don't think about it.

As a parallel history story (in the style of Sliders, say), it's rather good. Archer is caught between the lines, but rescued by the Resistance. It only dawns on you later that this an American Resistance and not the French one. The Nazis have taken the Eastern United States! There's certainly some goofy fun in seeing the White House in Nazi regalia and Brooklyn mobsters using their weapons, skills and connections to wage an insurrection. Life in occupied America is summarily, but well presented, mostly though the character of Alicia. The battle scenes are intense and have an almost documentary feel, and the CG effects are cool.

The Suliban are also back, in the form of Silik, stowed away aboard Enterprise. There's a hope then that this will be the final Temporal Cold War story. All the elements are in place, though Silik doesn't yet show his agenda. His escape by shuttlepod draws Travis and Trip down to Earth where they are captured by the Nazis and interrogated. Vosk suspects them (and the escaped Archer) to be time agents, but he will not be deterred. Indeed, his offer to Nazi Germany makes a nice parallel to the Sphere Builders' manipulation of the Xindi.

If there's resistance on my part to gleefully getting into Storm Front, it's most certainly the time travel fatigue talking.

LESSON: Communism is what gives Russians their power.

REWATCHABILITY - Medium: As a season opener, it's odd and "off-model", if you will, but still does the job.


De said...

Based on your comment about "time travel fatigue," I can't wait to see your commentary for tomorrow's episode.

Siskoid said...

It is the next day and now you know.

And knowing if half the battle.

Yo Joe!!


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