“Bound”

"Captain Archer, I represent a deposed Orion prince. If you can send me your bank account and pin number he can deposit..."
“Captain Archer, I represent a deposed Orion prince. If you can send me your bank account and pin number he can deposit…”

Orion trader Harrad-Sar (William Lucking) asks Archer to go into business with him (really). As part of the deal, the Orion trader gives Archer three Orion slave girls as gifts (ridiculously). Archer allows the slave girls aboard the ship (amazingly) and they start driving all the men wild (predictably) and give all the women headaches (stupidly). Turns out it’s all a plot by the Orion females to take over the ship and turn Archer over to the Orion Syndicate (laughably). Oh, and we learn that Orion females actually run Orion society (goofily). But Tucker — who’s still on Enterprise despite being chief engineer of another ship — is immune to the Orion females’ charm because … he really digs T’Pol’s chili (hard-to-swallowy). Tucker and T’Pol are able to foil the plot and Tucker, before the episode ends, tells her he’s going to stay on Enterprise, setting up a will-they-or-won’t-they thing for the rest of the series and beyond (pointlessly).

Why it’s important

We learn about the Orions. The enslaved females are really the ones running things. Everything else we seen has been a rouse.

Haven't you ever had some reaally goood "chili."
“Haven’t you ever had some reaally goood ‘chili.'”

What doesn’t hold up

We learn about the Orions. The enslaved females are really the ones running things. Everything else we seen has been a rouse.

Nope. Not a copy-and-paste issue, folks. This episode is significant for the same reason it, well, sucks. Or, at least, one of the reasons it sucks. The “drive men wild” part is pretty stupid and so is the “women get headaches.” Yuck.

I’m not saying that any species couldn’t be dominated by women. I’m saying that the twist here — considering that Orion females have ALWAYS been referred to as slaves — is far too cutesy and dumb. It’s almost like modern Trek trying to retcon ’60s Trek into being a little less sexist — in an episode that features more scantily clad women than just about any episode of this series. Irony is pretty ironic at times.

The only thing that could have worked in this episode is the Tucker/T’Pol stuff. But it’s just done much too flippantly. Considering the weight that their relationship had (and will have) at times, putting it into rom-com territory was a terrible decision. And how can Tucker get a transfer and a transfer back so easily? Bah.

Of course, Tucker’s short-lived replacement on Enterprise, Commander Kelby (Derek Magyar), is one of the weakest characters/plot devices in all of Star Trek. He’s about as competent as Cameron/the Enterprise B’s captain from “Generations,” despite holding a very high rank on Starfleet’s most important ship. In this episode, he’s basically conned by one of the Orion women into nearly KILLING EVERYONE — which doesn’t make sense, as the Orions were trying to capture Enterprise, not destroy it or kill themselves in the process.

I've never tried "chili" in that pos... uh configuration.
“I’ve never tried ‘chili’ in that pos… uh configuration.”

Final thoughts

File this one under the we-don’t-like-it-but-had-to-review-it category, right up there with “The Savage Curtain” and “The Assignment”. The Orions — and, particularly, the Orion slave girls — are iconic in Star Trek. Too bad more wasn’t done with that, as this is really a poor excuse for a callback. It’s fan service for fan service’s sake with extremely bad execution.

Coming later this week …

Mirror universe time!

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