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Daedalus

Review

Series : Enterprise Rating : 1
Disc No : 4.3 Episode : 86
First Aired : 14 Jan 2005 Stardate : Unknown
Director : David Straiton Year : 2154
Writers : Ken LaZebnik, Michael Bryant Season : 4
Guest Cast :
Bill Cobbs as Emory Erickson
Donovan Knowles as Quinn Erickson
Leslie Silva as Danica Erickson
Noel Manzano as Ensign Burrows
YATI : So the inventor of transporters was badly injured by one; his son was "killed" testing one; and he says that several other people were killed testing them. Call me a coward, but I'd want to know that they had sent a few monkeys through the transporter at least ten thousand times each before I went anywhere near it. Don't they do animal testing in the future?

Emory says his sub-quantum transporter is a completely flawed concept. So how come it worked on the probe? And if we say that he just did a normal transport on the probe, why would it end up 40,000 kilometres away? Previous episodes have indicated that the Enterprise transporter range is a few thousand kilometres, tops, so this was extended by at least tenfold! And even if we assume that Emory came up with some upgrade to the normal transporter to allow this, what was all that about "maybe you can extend your range a few hundred kilometres" at the end - he'd already beaten that by a long way!

New fact about Archer - he was one of those child prodigies! In this episode he talks about a heart-to-heart chat he had with his father the day before he went to flight school. In "Cold Station 12", we are told that Archer's father died when he was only twelve years old. So Archer must have gone to flight school when he wasn't even a teenager!

Great Moment : I have to go with Bill Cobbs. He does a good job as Emory, especially when talking about the loss of his son.
Body Count : Two - Emory's son Quinn and Ensign burrows.
Factoid : Emory Erickson was the first Human being to be transported; the transport cycle took a minute and a half to complete. Transporters do indeed pull a person apart into their constituent particles and then squirt them through space, just like McCoy always said they did.

Since Emory invented the transporter, we can have a reasonable window on when this happened. We can be fairly sure that the transporter wasn't cleared for biomatter (people) until shortly before Enterprise began in 2151 thanks to "Broken Bow". Emory was already working on the sub-Quantum transporter fifteen years before this episode, in 2139. So he would more than likely have built the original transporter somewhere in the region of 2120 - 2135.


Plotline

Emory Erickson, inventor of the transporter, comes aboard the NX-01 to test a new invention - the sub-quantum transporter, a device which could beam people between star systems. The ship travels to a barren region of space to test the device, but when a crewman is killed by a mysterious anomaly Archer begins to suspect that Erickson may be working to another agenda entirely.

Analysis

I didn't like this one much. The idea of bringing the inventor of the transporter onto the ship is a reasonable one, but the story used to frame it is a bit nonsensical and, frankly, silly. The idea that this guy has been floating around in space in a dematerialised state for fifteen years... I couldn't get past that and the episode suffered because of it.

There are shades of Voyager's "Jetrel" here; in both episodes a scientist who comes aboard saying he wants to do one thing when actually he is lying to cover his true mission. In both the real mission involves using the transporter to recover a person apparently killed by the scientist's actions in the distant past. In both the recovery attempt proceeds once the plot is uncovered, and in both that attempt then fails.

Unfortunately, while Jetrel makes an outstanding episode out of this premise, Daedalus just feels flat and lifeless somehow. It doesn't really grab you or involve you in any way.


Copyright Graham Kennedy Page views : 9,253 Last updated : 24 Nov 2014