Saturday, May 14, 2005

Alright, so I sat through the series finale of Enterprise last night. Jolene "Big Lips" Blalock -- who has been very vocal about her unhappiness with things like the show's writing -- described the finale as "fucking appalling" in an interview. I'd describe it as... Fucking appropriate.

On Friday, they showed two episodes. The first one wasn't really any kind of lead-in to the second and final, so it wasn't like all the other recent Trek series that got the two-hour finale treatment. Clearly, after all that hard work they've been doing raping the franchise for the past four seasons, they couldn't be bothered to write a finale that big.

The sad thing about the finale was that it wasn't even an episode of Enterprise -- it was an episode of The Next Generation. I'm not kidding. It takes place at the same time as another Next Gen episode from season 7, "The Pegasus." In it, one of Riker's former captains, now an admiral, comes on board and starts a bunch of shit. Riker is all conflicted, torn between his duty to the chain of command and his loyalty to Picard, blah blah blah. In the finale of Enterprise, Riker is working through the issues of "The Pegasus" by fucking around on the holodeck.

Yup, the last episode of Enterprise isn't even real in a sense. That's pretty appropriate; it gets better (or worse, depending on your perspective).

In his little holodeck excursion, Riker is watching events taking place six years after the second-to-last episode of Enterprise. At this point, the ship is about to be decommissioned and the Federation charter is going to be signed. By watching and interacting with the holodeck recreation of all this shit, Riker is supposed to get some kind of insights into command. The whole ridiculous exercise is, naturally, Counselor Troi's idea. Counselor Troi, quite possibly the most worthless character in Star Trek (yes, he's hiding something, Deanna, thanks for the help), played perfectly by a shitty actress.

I love Next Gen and all, but yeah, a lot of the acting isn't exactly what you'd call a tour de force. Marina Sirtis definitely led the pack on that one. Jonathan Frakes was always pretty good, though; he played Riker perfectly. Nowadays, though, he is looking a little worse for wear. He's put on some weight, and throughout the whole Enterprise series finale, he just looked tired. They could have just gotten Jay-Z to play the part, because that guy always looks like he needs a nap. Sirtis, on the other hand, is just fucking decaying. She just looks scary now, although that's partly due to all the goddamn makeup they cake on her. So of course, you can imagine what's going on beneath that paint job.

As far as Enterprise goes, about the only character I really cared about was Trip Tucker, the Chief Engineer. Sad when the hick on the show is its best character, but he really was. He's the show's best character, so what do they do with him in the finale? They kill him off, of course! All that shit and Trip dies at the very end. How very... Appropriate.

The final moment of appropriateness came at the end, when Riker gets pretty much to the end of the saga. Scott Bakula is about to give his big speech to the gathering of delegates at the founding ceremony. Of course, we don't even get to see the speech, but that's par for the course. Right as he's about to start, Riker ends the holodeck program, saying that he was going to go talk to Captain Picard and tell him what he's been hiding from him. That's... Fucking bullshit. I just saw "The Pegasus" a couple weeks ago, and that's not how shit went down. Riker didn't suddenly go to Picard and come clean. He let Picard know what was going on at a critical moment in the episode when the information he had was suddenly vital to the ship's survival. There was no indication in the action leading up to that moment that he was planning to fess up.

Yes, I know, maybe Riker was on his way to talk to Picard and he got interrupted, blah blah blah. The point is, had the Enterprise writers not been so fucking lazy, maybe they could have made things fit in better. You know, maybe they could have watched "The Pegasus" instead of just saying "Hey, this sorta fits" and calling that good enough. Oh, and all of this really isn't a complaint, by the way; I'm happy that the Enterprise writers handled it in this manner. It goes along perfectly with their continual disregard for established story lines. It was one final "fuck you" to continuity.

Star Trek is off the air now, for the first time in forever, and I'm very sad to say that I'm very happy about that. I didn't think it could get worse than Voyager, but oh yes it could, and it did. The powers that be who are in charge of the franchise are indicating that it will be years before Trek is back on TV, so that's good (assuming the time is used to come up with some new ideas for Trek, if that's even possible). Rick Berman supposedly has an idea for a new movie which sounds like total shit, but hopefully they don't let him do that. I would think that it's pretty unlikely after how poorly Nemesis did, plus it sounds like Trek has fallen out of favor over at Paramount. I guess being the first Trek series cancelled in over 35 years will do that to you.

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