Enterprise: The Breach (S02E21)

This was an episode that had high ambitions, but fell short more than a few times of actually attaining them.  One of the two plots involves a team of three cavers (Tripp and Malcolm, led by Travis, who is apparently really darn good at spelunking.  He must have learned it during all those years aboard a cargo ship…or something) who are sent to rescue a team of Denobulans who have been basically living underground on a foreign planet in order to collect rocks.  Turns out the planet is being taken over by some really nasty people who don’t want these three aliens exploring their caves, so who better to go get them than the crew of the Enterprise?  Yeah, I was wondering that myself.  Meanwhile, back on the ship, Doc is having a culture crisis as one of his patients, who is from a freighter orbiting the planet, is an Antaran, and just as three horns don’t play with longnecks, everyone knows that Denobulans don’t like Antarans, and vice versa.  He kind of wants to treat the patient, but the patient would rather die than be treated by a Denobulan.

Do I sense a lesson in understanding coming?  Yah, you betcha.

Actually, this was one of the better episodes of Enterprise that I have seen recently.  The moral crisis was fairly well done and, despite the invention of some new backstory for the Denobulans (this sort of plot device does pop up whenever it’s needed, I’ve noticed, but I’m learning to accept it), I thought the doctor’s crisis of conscience was believable and understandable.  The ending was as sappy as an after-school special, but it’s Star Trek, and that’s kind of how they roll sometimes.

Meanwhile the save-the-cavers subplot was entertaining, if a bit contrived.  Trip is becoming one of my favorite characters, and I enjoyed how forceful he was in telling the Denobulans that they needed to evacuate or else.  Nice going, Berman and co., for not making everyone a wuss.  :)  The only thing missing was a climbing song.

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