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Star Trek Lower Decks: Temporal Edict

Mikey, Samantha and I discuss the third episode of Star Trek: Lower Decks.

Mikey Heinrich: He's got wood! He's got wood!

I have to admit that there's something intrinsically charming about putting the word 'Temporal' into the title of a Star Trek episode and then making the plot all about an update to their work schedules with nary a hint of time travel in sight. It's not 'laugh out loud' funny, it's just 'I see what you did there' funny. Which isn't a slight. Both have their place.

What did make me laugh out loud was the crewman clearly scratching his butt right before the Captain yelled at him for not walking fast enough. That and all the wood jokes. Because I am classy like that.

I honestly don't know if I want to date Ransom or be Ransom at this point. Maybe both? The sequence about him and Mariner fighting to be the one who gets to do the fight was probably the funniest bit in the episode. And I'm not the only one shipping Mariner and Ransom at this stage, am I?

Lots more to say on this one, but I'll pass the Chat'leth with just two last words for the moment: Miles. O'Brien.

Billie Doux: I liked this one a lot more than the first two. Maybe because I absolutely believe in buffer time. Not giving people time to goof off nearly started a war. That'll teach them.

Are they setting up a Mariner/Ransom romance? Sure looked like it, could be fun. I didn't think Ransom was going to win the fight, because I keep expecting things to keep getting sillier, but then they did something Star Trek, with Ransom channeling Kirk. And the big scary alien loving to read.

Let's see, what else? I've probably mentioned it before, but I really love the bunks in the hallways every time I see them. I liked Boimler's "purge dance." I loved the graffiti problem. And the future worship of Miles O'Brien.

Plus – in space, everyone can hear the bass. :)

Mikey Heinrich: For some reason, the opening music concert scene was the only part of this one that didn't really land for me. Although I do want to hear 'Requiem for a Hug.'

This was just solidly structured all the way through. The Captain gets ditched from a plum assignment, so she's all pissed off, when she finds out about 'buffer time' (which as you say, Billie, is completely reasonable and necessary), completely overreacts, which leads to everybody being too frazzled to work effectively which leads to them bringing the wrong totem, which leads to, etc. Etc. Etc. It's really nicely put together.

Billie Doux: I liked Mariner's choice to keep her scars. It's an interesting choice for a cartoon character to make.

Mikey Heinrich: I really liked that too. Although I did spend that entire scene imagining them as Richard Dreyfuss and Robert Shaw in Jaws. Which made the following shirtless lusting... sit a little differently.

Not that I'm judging. #YourHooperAndQuintFanficIsValid

Samantha M. Quinn: I've always thought micro-managing was stupid and wrong, leave it to Lower Decks to prove me right. I think this was a good opportunity for the characters to learn some things about the nature of living on a starship, specifically Boimler and the Captain. Boimler learned that not everyone has to be like him to do well and he may be a bit weird when it comes to work/life balance. The Captain learned that just because someone isn't going 100% twenty-four hours a day doesn't mean they aren't putting in their best effort. I wish more employers would learn that, because 'buffer' time is generally important for both morale and sanity.

I somehow missed the names of Mariner and Ransom in the first episode, and was using Ransom to describe Mariner's actions... so I guess a 'ship between them wouldn't be horrible. Speaking of Mariner, I kind of loved her desperate fight to fight only to be out Kirked by Ransom. I was surprised he ended up being pretty competent, and the entire gladiator fight situation wasn't tiresome at all and they almost always are, as one of my least favorite genre tropes. I thought the culture of the aliens was kind of interesting, if a bit cartoonish, and that the solution was diplomatic and was very Star Trek.

Like Billie, this was my favorite of the first three, and really felt like the show was showing us what it was going to be in the long run.

Billie Doux: So what do you think? Three out of four wood jokes? Or should it be retained scars? Okay, frozen margaritas will do.


  1. (For once I'm not years behind the Doux crew in watching a Star Trek series.)
    This was the episode where I realized ST:LD was much better than I'd thought it would be. Not a parody, just a very funny version of Star Trek. Ransom is annoying, but he takes responsibility for his team. Captain Freeman imposes a ridiculous policy, but instead of being court martialled and never seen again she listens to a subordinate, admits she was wrong, and fixes it. Imperfect people who manage to live up to the Starfleet ideals anyway.

    1. Hugh, an excellent point. Imperfect people who manage to live up to the Starfleet ideals anyway. I think that's what made me a Lower Decks convert -- it's not just silly, it's still Star Trek.

  2. I’ll agree with this episode being the one where I began to like LD. Funny indeed and unexpectedly interesting and invest-worthy!


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