Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Star Trek: Enterprise
Star Trek: Enterprise is a science fiction television series set in the Star Trek universe. (Until the third season its title was simply Enterprise, and it is often abbreviated as ST:ENT or ENT). The series follows the adventures of the crew of the Enterprise (NX-01), the first human-built vessel to achieve Warp 5. Enterprise premiered in the United States on September 26, 2001.
Enterprise is a prequel to the other Star Trek series and movies. The pilot episode, "Broken Bow", takes place in 2151, ten years before the founding of the Federation and about halfway between the events shown in the movie Star Trek: First Contact and the original Star Trek series.
Enterprise marks several milestones in Star Trek production:
- the first Star Trek series to be produced in widescreen
- the first Star Trek series to be broadcast in HDTV
- the first Star Trek series to be produced exclusively on digital video
- the first Star Trek series since Star Trek: The Next Generation to debut at the start of a TV season rather than at mid-season
- the first Star Trek series to have a theme song with sung lyrics
Enterprise was cancelled by UPN on February 2, 2005 after a run of four seasons and 98 episodes, making it the first Trek series since the original Star Trek to have been cancelled by its network rather than finished by its producers. Despite the announcement, production of the series is being allowed to continue until the end of the season, with the final episode on UPN scheduled for broadcast on May 13, 2005. Barring the series being picked up by another network, the 2005-2006 season will mark the first time in eighteen years that a first-run Star Trek series has not been on the air.
- For plots of specific episodes see list of Star Trek: Enterprise episodes
The first two seasons of Enterprise depict the exploration of space by a crew who are able to go farther and faster than any humans had previously gone. It presents situations which are not entirely unfamiliar to Star Trek fans, but which allow its characters to face them unencumbered by the experience and rules which have built up over the following years of Trek history. Enterprise takes pains to show the origins of some concepts which have become taken for granted in Star Trek canon, such as Reed's development of force fields, and Archer's questions about cultural interference which would eventually be answered by the Prime Directive.
The Vulcans are often close by to offer help when needed, but believe that humans are not yet a mature enough species to be exploring the galaxy.
A recurring theme throughout the first three seasons is the "Temporal Cold War," in which a mysterious entity from the future uses technology to help a species known as the Suliban manipulate the timeline and change past events. Sometimes providing bad information to the crew of Enterprise and sometimes saving the ship from destruction, the entity's true motives are unknown. A human from Earth's future visits Captain Archer occasionally to assist him in fighting the Suliban and undoing damage to the timeline.
Low ratings encouraged the series' producers to seek a new direction for it. The third season changes the series' name to Star Trek: Enterprise and introduces a new enemy, the Xindi, whose goal is the annihilation of the human race due to fears that someday humanity will wipe them out. The entire third season follows one long story arc, which begins in the second season finale "The Expanse " in which the Xindi deploy a prototype weapon which cuts a wide, deep trench from central Florida to Venezuela killing seven million people. The Enterprise is refitted as a warship with military personel and travels through the Delphic Expanse to find the Xindi homeworld and prevent another attack against Earth.
The third season, especially later episodes, has been received more favorably by fans and critics. The episodes "Twilight" and "Proving Ground" were popular with fans, as was the arc formed by the last seven episodes of the third season:
Some of these were written or co-written by Manny Coto, a writer who joined the series in its third season. Coto's other scripts, such as "Similitude" are also considered to be of a higher caliber than earlier stories, which likely contributed to his being promoted to executive producer and show runner for season 4.
Season 4 has produced (and is expected to continue with) a mixture of two- and three-episode arcs, along with a few standalone episodes. The general theme of the season appears to be a focus on the prequel concept of the series, with many episodes referencing themes, concepts, and characters from past series. Season 4 has also seen the finale of the "Temporal Cold War" depicted in the previous three seasons. The fourth season also saw the much anticipated return of Brent Spiner (Data from Star Trek: The Next Generation) as the criminal mastermind Dr. Arik Soong in a three-episode arc ("Borderland", "Cold Station 12", and "The Augments") involving genetically enhanced superhumans known as "Augments". Coto has stated that his intent is to push the series towards the eventual founding of the United Federation of Planets.
Season 4 also addressed some discrepancies between the Vulcans of The Original Series and those depicted in Star Trek: Enterprise. The "Vulcan Civil War" arc ("The Forge ", "Awakening", and "Kir'Shara") was hailed as among the most interesting and intricately woven plotlines of the series. In it, the characters meet T'Pau (a character who shows up in The Original Series in the episode "Amok Time") and the audience sees Romulans trying to undermine the stability of the balance in power between the Andorians and Vulcans.
The exploration element of the first two seasons (and previous Trek series) has been downplayed in the fourth season, which is informally referred to as the "Solar System Arc" due to the fact that most storylines begin with Enterprise being assigned a mission from Earth, rather than simply encountering adventure through exploration. While many die-hard Trekkies have welcomed the show's focus on introducing concepts from other Trek series, some critics have bemoaned the decision to more or less abandon the "exploring strange new worlds" concept of the early seasons.
The creators of the series also made the decision with season 4 to focus mainly upon the three core characters of the series – Archer, Tucker, and T'Pol – in lieu of further developing the supporting characters (Sato, Mayweather, Reed, and Phlox). This format, based upon the similar "triumvirate" format used for the Original Series (which primarily focused on the trio of Kirk, McCoy, and Spock), has sparked further criticism from fans used to the ensemble format of TNG, DS9, and Voyager. However, this plan seems belied by many of the fourth season episodes, which feature characters such as Sato and Mayweather much more than has been the case in earlier seasons.
The series cancellation was announced prior to the writing of the final episode of the fourth season, which allows the writing team to craft a series finale. Spoiler warning: among Enterprise's final episodes are expected to be a two-parter detailing how Klingons become more human-looking during the period of TOS, a two-parter taking place in the Mirror Universe and featuring a starship from the TOS era, and a series of episodes relating to the creation of a League of Nations-style forerunner to the United Federation of Planets. A unique resolution of the Trip/T'Pol relationship is also planned. It has been reported that the planned season finale would--whether purposefully or not--make it very difficult to pick the series up for a fifth season on a new network; these reports remain unverified.
The final episode of Enterprise, entitled "These Are the Voyages ...", is scheduled to air on May 13 in the United States. Described by Rick Berman as a "valentine" to Star Trek fans, Paramount has confirmed that the episode will feature guest appearances by Jonathan Frakes and Marina Sirtis as their Star Trek: The Next Generation characters William Riker and Deanna Troi. Reportedly, Brent Spiner, another TNG veteran who had guest starred earlier in the fourth season, will have a "speaking, off-screen" role which may or may not be as Data.
The episode was originally written by Berman and Brannon Braga during the third season, and was intended to be used as a possible finale had the series been cancelled in 2004. 
Enterprise has been seen as an attempt to move Star Trek away from the political correctness of recent series towards being a more traditional action adventure. The casting of a white male as captain, his preference for unilateral action, the introduction of the Suliban as the clearly-indicated and largely simplistic 'bad guys', and even the dropping of the name "Star Trek" from the title (until season 3) are seen as distancing the new series from those which came before.
One newspaper writer has compared Star Trek's hawkish shift with the advent of the War on Terrorism. The name "Suliban" was, in fact, based upon the name of the Taliban, though the production work for Enterprise occurred well before the September 11, 2001 attacks. 
The series' theme song, a pop song written by Diane Warren and sung by Russell Watson, is a marked contrast to the sweeping instrumental themes used in all other Star Trek series. It is also the first such theme not to have been composed specially for Star Trek, having previously appeared (performed by Rod Stewart) in the film Patch Adams (1998). Like other aspects of the series, the theme song has polarized Trekkies, with many loving the song and many considering it inappropriate for a Star Trek series. A new, more upbeat arrangement of the theme song was introduced with the third season, but this had no impact on the controversy, except to elicit criticism from some who liked the original one.
The song is known by several titles but most commonly "Faith of the Heart" (the title from Patch Adams). However, the official soundtrack CD for Enterprise, as well as all releases of the song by Watson, give it the new title of "Where My Heart Will Take Me ." Only the first verse is heard in the opening credits; a longer recording by Watson exists and was released on the soundtrack CD.
Throughout the show's run, there was extensive internet speculation as to whether the theme song and opening credits would be changed. This speculation was fueled in October 2004 when the official website startrek.com posted an opening credits sequence in which Scott Bakula recites a modified version of the famous "Space, the final frontier..." speech (with the phrase "where no human has gone before" in place of "where no man" or "where no one"), accompanied by "Archer's Theme", the instrumental used as the closing credits music for the series. Although there was some internet-based speculation that this was going to replace the original credits, no such decision was made. Around this same time an alternate version of the opening credits using music from Star Trek: Generations and carrying a "Paramount Television Operations" notation, made the rounds on file sharing networks; this too was never adopted and there are doubts that this version was a genuine Paramount creation.
Trekkies who disapprove of "Where My Heart Will Take Me" will have some satisfaction before the series ends, however, as executive producer Manny Coto has stated that the upcoming two-part episode, "In a Mirror, Darkly ", which takes place within the Mirror Universe, will feature a unique opening credits sequence and music intended to capitalize on the alternate universe setting.
Many Trekkies have been upset by Enterprise, claiming that it violates the canon which has been established in previous series and movies. Brannon Braga, executive producer of the series, has gone on record as challenging the fans who make such claims to prove it. 
Even before the series premiered, it was controversial, with some vocal fans stating that a prequel to such a well-known franchise should simply not be attempted. Others were upset that a widespread rumor that the new Trek series would focus on Captain Hikaru Sulu and the crew of the U.S.S. Excelsior (featured in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country) also proved false. The final seasons of Voyager were unpopular with many fans, and the fact the same production team of Berman and Braga were going to run Enterprise turned some Trekkies against the series before production began.
Cosmetic aspects of the series were also points of contention. In order to make the series distinct from the previous Trek series, the producers chose not to put the words "Star Trek" in the title. This idea backfired, with many fans rejecting the series based on this decision alone. Early in the third season, the series title was altered to include the words Star Trek.
The production style of the series also led to conflict amongst fans, with some criticizing the series for not replicating the style of the 1960s Original Series while others praised the show for not going for a retro look.
Several episodes have proven to be flashpoints for fan criticism. The first season episode, "Dear Doctor ", was controversial due to the ethics displayed by Dr. Phlox with regards to letting a race of beings die in order to save another. The season 2 episode "A Night in Sickbay" was a comedy episode widely derided by critics and trekkies, although it nonetheless received a Hugo Award nomination and is often cited by the cast as one of their favorite episodes. Another season 2 episode, "Regeneration", introduced the Borg and attracted wide criticism over its alleged breaking of continuity (although the previous series Voyager had already established that Starfleet was well aware of the Borg before the apparent first contact seen in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Q Who?").
The decision to introduce a romance between T'Pol and Trip Tucker also fanned the flames of criticism, as some critics regarded it as poorly executed. Jolene Blalock (T'Pol) criticized the development. Supporters of the decision countered that the Trip/T'Pol relationship is generally better handled than similar relationships in past Star Trek series. However, the pairing was also criticized by ardent fans who felt that such a relationship should instead have been established between T'Pol and Captain Archer.
The series polarized the Trek fan community and two "factions" have been identified. Initially, the term "Gushers" was used to describe fans who enjoy the series, while "Bashers" was applied to Trekkers who did not like the show. Each group tends to object to these titles. More recently, the terms have been modified to usually refer to only the extreme fans on both sides (i.e. those who reject any criticism of Enterprise are called gushers, while those who hate the show and refuse to be swayed are called bashers).
An ongoing debate among Trekkies is whether or not the cancellation of this series will mark the end of televised Star Trek. In an ironic twist to the years-long fight to bring Star Trek back to television in the 1970s and 1980s, there are a growing number of Trekkies who feel that the concept has worn itself out and should either be retired, or laid to rest for a number of years. A "Kill Enterprise" movement was created by Polish Trekkies in response to fan-based efforts to save the show (i.e. while the Save Enterprise movement raised money for a newspaper ad and planned rallies in the wake of the cancellation announcement, Kill Enterprise supporters threw parties and sent thankful e-mails to Paramount and UPN). Declaring victory, the Kill Enterprise site designers attempted to recast the site as a forum for discussing future Star Trek productions.
Enterprise's producers, as well as Paramount itself, have stated that Enterprise will probably be the last Star Trek television series for some years to come, although it is possible the movie franchise may continue as there is already talk of an 11th Star Trek film.
The producers of Enterprise were faced with a controversy of another kind with the 2004 episode "Harbinger", which included a love scene in which T'Pol's buttocks were briefly shown. Aside from complaints from some fans that such nudity was inappropriate for Star Trek, the episode was also scheduled to air not long after the Super Bowl XXXVIII controversy in which Janet Jackson "accidentally" exposed a breast on live TV, leading to an upswing in censorship in America. As a result, when the episode was finally aired on UPN, the scene was censored. Viewers in Canada, however, saw the uncensored version and it is assumed that the uncensored version will appear on the upcoming DVD release.
A troubled run
Despite most critics agreeing on the strength of the third season and most episodes of the fourth season receiving near-unanimous praise, the series experienced a continual decline in its ratings. (See List of Star Trek: Enterprise episodes for the Nielsen Ratings.) This, along with the poor box office performance in 2002 of Star Trek: Nemesis, cast an uncertain light upon the future of the Star Trek franchise in general. While some placed blame on the current production staff or on the concept of the series, others blamed its parent network UPN for not promoting the series and allowing major affiliates to preempt it on many occasions for local sports coverage. Many fans also reported that they chose to watch UPN's weekend rebroadcasts of the series, which were not counted in the ratings. This led actor Connor Trineer, in an interview with Starlog magazine, to unusually request that fans not watch the weekend replay. Another factor cited for the show/franchise's decline was the fact that, as of 2005, there had been continuous Star Trek production for nearly 18 years, and executive producer Rick Berman in part blamed "franchise fatigue" for the show's poor reception.
In response to reports that the series was headed for cancellation at the end of its third season, several fan campaigns to save the show were launched: most notably those of "The Enterprise Project" and "Save Enterprise". The former purchased several full page advertisements in the Hollywood Reporter to encourage the network to renew the show. The ads were funded by donations from fans and excess funds were donated to charity in the names of several cast members.
On May 20, 2004 it was announced that Enterprise had been renewed for a fourth season but that the show would move from Wednesday to Friday nights. Paramount cut its per-episode price and reduced the number of episodes from 24 to 22 so that the series would be more financially attractive to the struggling UPN; it is assumed that one reason why the show was renewed was so that Paramount would have enough episodes for proper syndication should it be cancelled (100 episodes are generally deemed necessary for this, although Enterprise's total output is considered close enough with 98 episodes). This move echoed the rescheduling of the original Star Trek to a Friday night time slot (see Friday night death slot) for its third season prior to its ultimate cancellation.
Paramount Network Television president Garry Hart was quoted in an August 2004 New York Times article that Paramount and UPN stood by the series and hoped to see it continue for several more seasons. Only days later, however, Hart resigned his position and this, combined with the departure or reassignment of other Star Trek supporters within Paramount and UPN during 2004, placed the future of the series in doubt.
A new co-executive producer, Manny Coto, was brought in for the fourth season. Coto decided to retain the "arc" concept of season 3, but reduce it from one arc for the entire season to several "mini-arcs" of two or three episodes, with a few standalones. In order to attract more viewers, particularly Star Trek fans who had not found Enterprise or the previous Star Trek: Voyager to their liking, the producers brought in Brent Spiner, a veteran of Star Trek: The Next Generation, to appear in three episodes of the fourth season. In addition, the producers attempted to attract viewers by terminating an unpopular story arc (the Temporal Cold War) and scheduling numerous episodes that served as prequels to storylines from the Original Series and TNG.
Beginning in the summer of 2004, and continuing throughout the fourth season, rumors persisted that William Shatner would reprise the role of James T. Kirk in the series, however an agreement could not be reached.
The fourth season got off to a slow start in the ratings on October 8, 2004 due to preemptions by local sports in some markets, and by coverage of a presidential debate between George W. Bush and John Kerry in others. The ratings also continued to be affected by the "rerun effect" when first-run episodes were rebroadcast over the weekend by UPN affiliates in time slots not registered by Nielsen. Enterprise fans continued to indicate that they chose to watch the weekend showing rather than the Friday broadcast, or chose to "time-shift" the program using their VCR or TiVo equipment. In October 2004, it was announced that Enterprise was the 25th most popular Season Pass on the TiVo television recording system in the United States.
In December 2004, it was reported that Enterprise was the top-rated dramatic program on UPN, although by January 2005 it had fallen behind the law drama Kevin Hill , but it remained ahead of the critically acclaimed mystery series Veronica Mars.
The internet gave rise to near-continuous rumors and speculation regarding the show's future from the earliest days of the series, and this reached a fever pitch as the fourth season began and Nielsen ratings for the show, although an improvement for the Friday night timeslot, still dropped in comparison to the previous season.
Cancellation and aftermath
In the days immediately following the cancellation announcement, the Star Trek fan community remained divided between those who were upset by the news and by those who welcomed it. Some fans, posting to online newsgroups and bulletin boards, blamed Berman and Braga for the cancellation, while others blamed network head Les Moonves, who was identified in the media as the individual who made the decision to cancel the show.
During an online chat at startrek.com on February 11, 2005 , and later repeated in other media, Scott Bakula stated that the major reason for the show's cancellation is that it no longer fit the profile or desired demographic of UPN (the network's schedule primarily consists of so-called "urban" sitcoms and reality programming. He also said that major changes to the management of both Paramount and UPN during 2003-2004 resulted in past supporters of Star Trek departing the organization (most notably the aforementioned Garry Hart). Bakula said the series was to have been cancelled at the end of the 2003-2004 season, but support from Hart and others earned the show one final year.
Soon after the cancellation announcement, Enterprise received its fourth consecutive Saturn Awards nomination for Best Dramatic Series.
On February 15, 2005, during the ratings period known as "sweeps week ", the enterprisefans.com joint group ran an advertisement  in the Los Angeles Times, paid for by fan donations, exhorting the American Sci Fi Channel to pick up the show. The ad received wide press coverage from, among other outlets, the Associated Press, BBC and CNN. Later that month, a group of fans held a rally in front of the Paramount Studios facility in Hollywood.
Around this time, several fan groups including Save Enterprise joined forces to create TrekUnited.com, and announced a drive to raise money via fan donations to finance a further season of Enterprise. On March 1, Trek United and Save Enterprise announced  that three anonymous individuals connected with the fledgling commercial spaceflight industry had pledged $3 million to the cause, although millions of dollars more will be needed in order for this effort to be successful (approximately $30 million US is the goal of the campaign, based upon estimates of the cost for a full season cited by John Billingsley and others). Critics of the initiative have labelled it unrealistic, but supporters have said that it is a symbolic gesture.
Another fan based effort through Trek United sought members of the United States Congress to sign a letter of support for the series which is to be sent to Paramount at a later date. On March 1, supporters of this effort announced that Florida Republican Mark Foley had become the first Congressman to agree to sign the letter.
Production of the fourth season concluded on March 8, 2005, and by the end of the month, Startrek.com was reporting that the Enterprise sets had been taken down, marking the first time that Stage 9 at Paramount Studios has been without Star Trek sets since the late 1970s. The website did not indicate whether the sets have been preserved in storage or if they have been destroyed.
As of April 13, 2005, Paramount and UPN remain adamant that the cancellation of the series is final and that the studio is not interested in continuing the current incarnation of Star Trek and Startrek.com revealed that studio officials had actually denied TrekUnited's fund-raising efforts as early as mid-March. TrekUnited officials, however, still claimed to be in talks with Paramount over the future of the series.
On April 15, TrekUnited revealed that it had joined forces with several Canadian film production companies to put forward a proposal to Paramount that would see further seasons of Enterprise filmed abroad (most likely Canada) and jointly produced by Paramount and these several unidentified production houses.  On April 16, however, TrekUnited, after identifying the British cable network SkyOne and Canadian producer Al Vinci as the partners in the proposal, announced that Paramount had formally rejected the idea and that promised refunds for those fans who had donated to the cause would be issued beginning on April 18.
The website IGN Filmforce , reporting on rumors that Paramount had actually decided to cancel Enterprise after its fourth season as early as midway through the second year, quoted an unidentified "executive involved with Enterprise" as saying this scenario was "very likely". Soon after, Scott Bakula, in an interview with Sci Fi Wire , reiiterated his belief that management changeovers at Paramount in 2003-2004 left Enterprise and the Star Trek franchise without strong support, adding that as recently as 2004 now-departed management at the studio had expressed interest in developing a feature film based upon Enterprise.
In October 2004, Paramount announced that it will release the first four seasons of Enterprise on DVD in North America during 2005, with the current season arriving in the late fall of 2005. There was concern raised in fan circles that the announcement of a DVD release, coupled with Paramount advertising television syndication for the series beginning in the fall of 2005, indicated that the series was less likely to be renewed for another season. It has yet to be revealed whether these two developments had any bearing on the decision to cancel the program since Voyager was offered to syndication midway through its run with no impact on its network status, and TNG, DS9, and Voyager all saw episodes released to home video during their runs, long before those series ended.
The first season DVD set will be released May 3, 2005 and is expected to include a blooper reel, as well as a selection of deleted scenes – the first time either of these extras has been included with a Star Trek series DVD release. The second season is currently scheduled for release in North America on July 26.
- Captain Jonathan Archer (Scott Bakula)
- Subcommander (later Commander) T'Pol, a Vulcan, second in command (Jolene Blalock)
- Commander Charles "Trip" Tucker III, chief engineer (Connor Trinneer)
- Lieutenant Malcolm Reed, tactical officer (Dominic Keating)
- Ensign Hoshi Sato, communication officer (Linda Park)
- Ensign Travis Mayweather, helm officer (Anthony Montgomery)
- Doctor Phlox, the ship's Denobulan physician (John Billingsley)
- Admiral Maxwell Forrest, Archer's superior officer (Vaughn Armstrong), killed during the fourth season in "The Forge ", although a Mirror Universe version of the character named Maximillian Forrest will appear in Season 4.
- Captain Erika Hernandez, Captain of the Enterprise's sister ship Columbia and onetime romantic interest of Jonathan Archer.
- Soval, a Vulcan ambassador (Gary Graham)
- Silik, a Suliban (John Fleck), killed in "Storm Front (Part II)" at the start of the fourth season.
- Crewman Elizabeth Cutler , a young, inexperienced crewmember (Kellie Waymire) who appeared several times during the first season, and was briefly a romantic interest for Phlox. Cutler's status is not known as of the start of season 4; Waymire died in 2003, however the character has been mentioned as being an Enterprise crewmember since the actress' death.
- Degra, a Xindi-Primate (Randy Oglesby ). A recurring character during the third season, murdered in "The Council".
- Major Hayes, leader of the MACO team during the third season, killed in "Countdown " (Steven Culp)
- Shran, member of the Andorian Imperial Guard and an ally of Archer's (Jeffrey Combs).
- Crewman Daniels, a temporal agent from the 30th Century (Matt Winston), who supposedly died several times.
- Michael Rostov , a member of Tucker's Engineering team who has appeared occasionally (Joseph Will ).
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