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While Dawson’s direction was adequate, the story makes for a plodding pace nonetheless. We know from the get-go what’s going to happen which doesn’t help things any and we almost know ahead of time what lines will be spoken, the story is so old-hat. Still, we do manage to learn a bit more about Hoshi in that she is a loner, most likely not by choice and that she is extremely gifted with perhaps some latent psychic powers. I do hope they don’t go there as the main character with superhuman abilities has been done to death. Nonetheless, Hoshi’s gift is a little unbelievable. She is given a 1000 year old book which features a dead language from a race that’s long disappeared and in a matter of hours is reading it? Sorry, that’s just a little too much to suspend disbelief for. Regardless of how good she is with languages, she is still human, or is she?

The subplot of Archer and Tucker going to the second sphere to get scans fares a little better albeit not by much. The scene with the shuttlepod falling back down on the sphere looks so fake it’s hard to watch. At least there’s a purpose to it all in that they need the scans and they do come in handy later.

The overall Xindi and Expanse storyline does advance and that’s the good thing about this episode. We find out that there are roughly 50 spheres that were perhaps created to make the Expanse. T’Pol’s query about why anyone would want to create a “web of crippling anomalies” does add to the mystery and makes me want to watch more to find out what it’s all about. Hoshi’s character does grow a bit here as well in that she appears much stronger than she did in earlier episodes.

One thing I found odd is that my son who never watches the show, he can’t stand it, was eyeing this episode on and off while I played the tape. I asked him why the heck he was watching this one when there’s been so many other better episodes that he’s totally ignored. He said he liked the way Linda Park and especially the alien looked. So I guess the makeup is to be commended in this episode if it caught my cynical son’s eye although to me Tarquin looked just like another typical Trek alien.

Continuity continues to be good in that they mention the sphere from “Anomaly” and add to this idea, Trellium-D is cleverly inserted into the story and is logically used, then there’s the anomalies themselves and of course there’s the Xindi weapon. This episode is worth watching at least once in that it adds to the Xindi arc and I would think a must for Hoshi fans.

I give this one a C.

Gisele La Roche, About 

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