"Countdown"
Page 8 of 8

the Insectoids as their pawns. They are the true villains and yet we know next to nothing about them. We know they built the Spheres and that they've been manipulating the Xindi for quite some time. However we don't know *why* they are configuring the Expanse other than they want to turn it into a place where they can live. Why do they need to do this? What would make them have to or want to commit genocide? It's too bad this hasn't been explained as it would have given their machinations more depth and reason.

It's also a pity that the Reptilian commander, Dolim, hasn't been more developed. He's somewhat limited in the sense that we don't really know why he so stubbornly wants to believe in the Guardians. He's the quintessential despot who is corrupted by the Guardians' promise of absolute power and yet it doesn't quite ring true. Something's missing and I don't know what it is. Scott MacDonald has done a great job portraying the commander but he was given a narrow range to work with and that's too bad. I wish we could have seen Dolim playing or talking with children for instance to contrast his cruelty and his ruthlessness. Still, the murder of Degra in "The Council" was well-played by both MacDonald and Oglesby and is the dramatic highlight of the arc so far. But it's the fact that even after Dolim sees the anomalies and is aware that the Guardians control the Spheres, he is still ready to destroy Earth. Even the Insectoids have doubts but he just gets rid of them. It makes you wonder if he is a little stupid which makes him less powerful and less of a threat and that lessens the whole storyline. Nonetheless, it's been a great story arc and it's not that difficult to ignore the flaws if the storyline is viewed as a whole. I've enjoyed it immensely.

I give this one a B.

Gisele La Roche, About
giselelaroche@yahoo.com


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