A really fun episode with a very bittersweet ending. I very much enjoyed it.
First of all +1 to whatever rating system we're using for the return of Hemmer! Also, another +1 for Hemmer continuing to be freaking awesome. More Hemmer! MOAR HEMMER!
Celia Rose Gooding must have been having a blast filming this episode, because she really gets to ham it up as the evil queen. Also, that outfit... As I said last week, evil is sexy.
It's a good thing that La'an didn't remember anything that happened, otherwise I'm sure she'd be mortified by how she behaved. Also, yup, that's Christina Chong's actual dog.
So the Huntress (Number One) and royal guard (Ortegas) know each other "really well" in this version of the story. Nope, no subtext there. Move along, everyone.
Of course, this is an M'Benga episode, and Babs Olusanmokun does a really good job of portraying him trying to figure out what's going on while at the same time dealing with this massive silliness.
Lastly, we unexpectedly get a conclusion to the storyline involving M'Benga's daughter Rukiya. The nebula entity offers to allow Rukiya to stay in the nebula happy and healthy so that neither has to be alone, which Rukiya accepts. Again, props to Olusanmokun, Sage Arrindell (kid Rukiya), and Makambe Simamba (adult Rukiya) for making the goodbye scene very poignant.
In retrospect, though, they couldn't have kept this storyline going for too long. First of all, keeping Rukiya in the transporter buffer would mean she wouldn't age much, while the actress would. Secondly, there'd only be so many "M'Benga thinks he's found a cure for his daughter but not really" episodes you could do before that gets old.
-------------------- "Kirito? I killed a thing and now it says I have XPs! Is that bad? Am I dying?"
-Asuna, Episode 2, Sword Art Online Abridged
Registered: Mar 1999
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If we were dealing with real world probabilities, I’d argue that there’s a distinct likelihood that over the centuries there are two authors with the same name. But this is Star Trek, where of *course* it’s supposed to be the same person.
-------------------- “Those people who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.” — Isaac Asimov Star Trek Minutiae | Memory Alpha
Registered: Nov 2000
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If we go then by the implication that there was “really” a fictionally-historical author named Benny Russell (whose biography matches what we saw in DS9), I wonder at what point in his life he turned to writing outright fairy tales? There could be a great deal of poignancy, perhaps unintentional perhaps not, in the notion that when denied the opportunity to write about the things he wanted to, even in the guise of science fiction, but that he could then do so through the medium of fantasy. Thus mirroring Star Trek’s own creator’s journey, but at one further remove due to Russell lacking a certain degree of - well, basically, white - privilege that Roddenberry was afforded.
Undeniably a bitter-sweet resolution. I was contemplating at the start of the episode whether we were going to be faced with Rukiya dying - for various personal reasons I particularly struggle with children dying in fiction. So this was probably as best a resolution we could hope for: M’Benga didn’t get to see his daughter grow up and really share her life, but then barring some medical miracle he was never going to anyway. Again, something that troubles me.
[My mum’s parents split up when she was very young and she didn't really ever see her biological father ever again - but not does he seem to have tried to maintain the contact; and the idea of never seeing my children again is intolerable to me, and yet 25% of my genetic makeup comes from this person. As my dad said to me one time, “I think your mum’s father, from what I can gather, was a bit of a cunt.”]
So was that dog La'an was carrying a construct of the sentient space cloud (in which there was almost certainly coffee, for reasons...), or is there also a dog aboard this Enterprise? One would assume that given how everything is somehow connected these days, that this dog is a descendant of Porthos.
Registered: Jul 2006
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Porthos, along with Soong's genetically engineered dog, would later settle in the Beta Renner system. Eschewing further genetic augmentation, their "pups" chose the name "Anti-Khan", and the initial rise of the Antican civilization had begun, much to the consternation of the neighboring Selay.
- Star Trek Encyclopedia, CBS Edition, 2024,
-------------------- . . . ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam.