"Carpenter Street"
Page 4 of 5

Leland Orser does a great job as the sleazy, self-serving Loomis. He also did a great job as *Dejaren* in Voyager's "Revulsion" as the psychotic, killer hologram. He is very believable in both instances and they are very different situations. Here he's a greedy low-life whereas in the Voyager episode he was a crazy hologram. He's a good actor as he's able to be very different characters and yet both are appropriately creepy.

The character of Loomis tries to justify his actions. He says early on in the episode to the prostitute he picks up and drugs: "It's ok. They said they won't hurt you." This doesn't change anything however. He is still, for lack of a better word, scum. When talking to Archer and T'Pol he states that he wouldn't help terrorists but how can he be certain that the people he is working with aren't? Money is his first priority. Still, he is a lowly medical worker and most likely gets minimum wage. He is easy prey for someone who would offer him the amount of money it appears the Xindi-Reptilians were offering him. Not that this justifies anything but it makes him a believable character in how he is written. It's a pity the Reptilians aren't as convincing.

In "North Star" we got nearly all the Western movie cliches and here we get *some* of the cop show ones. There's the prostitute (I was waiting for a pimp to show up); there's the run down part of town and T'Pol and Archer being taken for and acting like cops. At least we were spared the good cop, bad cop routine although on second thought it might have helped make the episode funnier and better. Again as in "North Star", we get a serious situation rather than a comedy and that's a shame simply because both would probably have worked better as comedies with a serious subtext.

There are some nice continuity touches here from the mention of Rajiin; the need for the phase pistols to be set on kill as stun didn't work on the Reptilians when they came for her and of course there's the bio-weapon; we see Porthos being fed cheese again and we see Daniels and the story get tied in with the Temporal Cold War.

Unfortunately, the Reptilians are shown to be easy to defeat. I would have liked to see them use the same weapons they used in Rajiin when they attacked the security team. That would have required some CGI work but it would have added some suspense to see Archer dodge as the blob explodes and he avoids the projectiles. We get the ominous line from the Reptilian: "We won't allow you to destroy us. Your species is doomed." Why does this not sound *ominous* anymore? Perhaps if the Reptilians had been shown as more difficult to defeat it would have been more believable. For instance, what if they had been able to escape back to the future with the bio weapon? Granted it wouldn't have been completed but it would have been interesting to see Archer chase them through time. In fact, this would have made a good two-parter. Still, the Xindi need to be fleshed out more and as such become more three-dimensional otherwise their *threat* doesn't really have any impact, at least here it doesn't.

There's an unsettling undertone in the episode regarding terrorists and the idea of bio-weapons. Of all the types of weapons that might be used today, this would be the type as it could be easily manufactured and easily deployed. Needless to say, there are other Loomis'


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