(written from a Production point of view)
Archer is called in to mediate a territorial dispute between the Vulcans and the Andorians.
Hostilities have escalated on Weytahn (or Paan Mokar, as Vulcans call it). Commander Shran has brought a military force to the planetoid, hoping to renegotiate the old, unsatisfying, and oppressing hundred-year-old Territorial Compromise treaty. The Vulcans managed to get half of the colony back, but both sides have suffered.
Captain Jonathan Archer is ordered by Admiral Maxwell Forrest to go there as a negotiator. Archer is not sure how they expect him to help in a conflict they have not been able to resolve in one hundred years, but Admiral Forrest emphasizes the importance of this mission, stating that this is the first time the Vulcans asked them for their help and that Archer is the closest thing Starfleet has to an ambassador out there. Despite initial hesitation, Archer agrees to get there as fast as he can.
During dinner, Captain Archer asks T'Pol about Paan Mokar, claiming that he doesn't really know much about it except that it is a class D planet, not much bigger than Earth's moon, and that it was claimed by the Vulcans in 2097. Trip Tucker notes that a class D planet is uninhabitable and wonders why they are fighting over it. T'Pol explains that when the Andorians first arrived a century ago, they began terraforming the planet; once an atmosphere was developed, they established a settlement. Archer asks why there is a problem if it was unclaimed at the time. T'Pol explains that the planet's sole value is its strategic location near Vulcan space and that Vulcans believed that the only logical conclusion was that the Andorians were setting up a military base there – even though, technically, they did not have any evidence of a military settlement built on Paan Mokar. She states that the Andorians refused to let the Vulcan High Command inspect the colony, upon which Paan Mokar was finally annexed to Vulcan territory. The Andorian colonists were removed by force and after this forced removal, a surveillance satellite was put in orbit to monitor the agreement. The planet has been deserted for nearly a century – until now.
- "Captain's starlog, Supplemental. In the three days it has taken is to reach Paan Mokar, the situation has grown considerably more tense."
When they finally arrive in orbit, Archer first meets with Ambassador Soval, who is not very happy about the situation and the fact that Archer has been asked to negotiate this. He wonders why an officer of the Andorian Imperial Guard would personally ask for Archer's involvement in such a matter. Soval makes it clear that given the nature of these negotiations, he does not really consider Enterprise's presence there an asset. Archer regrets that he feels that way and offers to leave if they so desire, but Soval does not seem to like this alternative either. He explains that six days ago, Commander Shran landed a force on Weytahn, occupying the settlement. While the Vulcans attempted to enforce the treaty of 2097, several were wounded in these efforts and three taken hostage. Shran has agreed to discuss terms for the safe return of the hostages, however, but only if Archer acts as mediator. Archer's presence during these negotiations therefore, seems indispensable and they need his help whether they like it or not. However, Soval wants to send one of his officers, Sub-Commander Muroc, down with Archer, something Archer does not want to do, stating that this would just makes matters worse. He says that the only Vulcan he will bring down with him on the planet will be his first officer – T'Pol.
Archer and T'Pol then proceed to the surface to meet with Shran. He explains to T'Pol that his first goal is to convince Shran that he can trust him. On the surface, a group of armed Andorian guards meet with them and take them to Shran. The Andorian commander does not hesitate to reveal his demands of immediate withdrawal of all Vulcan military forces, the rescinding of the so-called compromise, and the conceding of full sovereignty of Weythan to Andoria. But Archer doesn't want to play that role, stating that if all Shran needs is someone to deliver his list of demands, then he should find someone else. But Shran says that he needs Archer's help because he wants to speak with Soval personally, someone who actually can make binding decisions without having to ask his superiors and drag on the issue forever. Archer agrees to see what he can do. Shran wants the negotiations to take place on the planet. In return, and as a sign of good faith, he agrees to release one of the Vulcan hostages.
Back on Enterprise NX-01, Soval finds the proposed conditions unacceptable. He says that if he agrees to a meeting, then it simply legitimizes the Andorian position, but Archer says that if he does not, then these negotiations end before they begun. Soval is reluctant, which in turn irritates Archer who is trying to reach a compromise between the two by opening up the channels of communication. Soval says that he did not ask for Archer's help and that he also does not feel obliged to accept it, but Archer points out that at least the Andorians are willing to talk, which is more than can be said of the Vulcans; the next move has to come from the Vulcan, Archer tells him. Despite his reservations, Soval finally agrees to go down to the planet with Archer to speak with Shran.
On the planet, Shran's lieutenant, Tarah, asks Shran whether talking is really the way to go because after all, they have been talking for nearly a hundred years with the Vulcans without getting anywhere, except for the Vulcans constantly stalling the situation and lying to them. She believes that backing down now would be a bad idea. But Shran says that he is willing to give Archer a chance. Tarah believes that Shran is putting too much faith into the "pink skins", believing them to be nothing but the pawns of the Vulcans, working for their best interests accordingly. If they attack now, Tarah tells him, the Andorian forces will have the Vulcan warships on the defensive before any reinforcements can arrive. Shran simply notes her recommendation, but this makes Tarah more insistent and she continues to argue the point, which angers Shran.
Meanwhile, T'Pol, Archer, and Soval make their way down to the planet via shuttlecraft. However, upon entering the planet's atmosphere, they are fired upon by Andorian weapons and are forced to make an emergency landing without taking much damage. As soon as they exit the shuttle, Soval is already backing up, suggesting to fall back on Vulcan positions, but Archer insists on trusting Shran and giving this a fair chance. He points out that they really do not know what happened, while Soval is adamant about blaming the Andorians for the attacks that crash-landed them here. He thinks that Archer is naive not realizing that Shran is just using him, but Archer believes that it is Soval who is mistaken.
Before they can reach Shran's base, they are attacked by Tarah and other Andorians, wounding Soval. Archer manages to get around them and neutralize them just as Shran arrives. Tarah tries to accuse Archer of betraying them, but Archer tells Shran he'll find Andorian weapon signatures on Soval's injury and on their shuttle. Shran confronts Tarah and demands the truth. Tarah finally admits she was unwilling to follow "orders to do nothing, while you betray us." She once again urges him to take a stand against the Vulcans, but instead he places her under arrest.
In orbit, the situation is at least as tense. Three Andorian battle cruisers come out of warp and are in a standoff with the two Vulcan cruisers that were there previously. Tucker decides to enforce his neutrality by taking the Enterprise between the two enemies that are already charging weapons. The situation is defused when Archer calls from the surface, saying that everyone is fine.
From there, negotiations can finally proceed, and while both sides are not fully happy with the terms of the cease-fire, they are at least equally dissatisfied, which is at least something they have in common at this point. Shran proposes a toast to their mutual dissatisfaction, which Soval accepts, though Vulcans usually do not drink, given the exceptional circumstances, a drink was merited. The negotiations will be continued on Andoria and Soval grudgingly acknowledges Archer's help in the matter.
Deleted scene Edit
Scene 19 Edit
In a deleted scene, right after Archer established negotiations with Shran, saying that Ambassador Soval in person should go to the surface, he is coming back to Enterprise in a shutttlepod with T'Pol and one of the hostages, a Vulcan commando, who had been released by the Andorians. Meanwhile Archer asks T'pol why she is so quiet, if she is unhappy about how he handled the negotiations. She replies that as Shran said, this is a very tense situation, but she thinks he is doing well. However, T'Pol alerts Archer that her opinions often differs from those of the Vulcan High Command.
Log entries Edit
- "Captain's Starlog, supplemental. In the three days it's taken us to reach Paan Mokar, the situation has grown considerably more tense."
- "Captain's Starlog, supplemental. Ambassador Soval has begun talks with the Andorians. They have been difficult, but productive."
Memorable quotes Edit
"Have you ever known a Vulcan who wouldn't lie to get what he wanted?"
- - Tarah, to Shran
"There is another option. Someone I've dealt with. A pink skin. He's proven to be quite even-handed in dealing with Vulcans. His name is Archer."
- - Shran, on who he wants to negotiate a cease fire between the Andorians and Vulcans
"Jonathan, this is the first time the Vulcans have asked for our help. You're the closest thing we have to an ambassador out there. You know how important this could be."
- - Forrest, when Soval requests Archer's assistance on Paan Mokar
"I don't like pushing the engines this hard. The injectors are running at 110 percent."
"They're rated for 120."
"And my underwear is flame retardant. That doesn't mean that I'm going to light myself on fire to prove it!"
- - Tucker and T'Pol
"Ironic... they weren't overly enthusiastic about you taking command of Enterprise in the first place, and now, your presence is...crucial to their interests."
"It's crucial to ours too... Maybe we're not out here to just scan comets and meet new species, maybe we're out here to prove that Humanity is ready to join a much larger community... I intend to do that – whether the Vulcans like it or not."
- - Phlox and Archer
"I imagined my first diplomatic mission would involve sitting around a big table, toasting with champagne, signing things with lots of pens..."
"The pink skin sense of humor."
- - Archer and Shran
"The ball's in your court now."
"It's a Human expression – it means the next move is yours."
- - Archer, then T'Pol, to Ambassador Soval
"Fifty meters. We need to reduce our speed."
"The ground is gonna do that for us!"
- - T'Pol and Archer
"My ears are less likely to draw fire than yours!"
- - Archer, to T'Pol and Soval
"What is their fixation with our ears?"
"I believe they're envious."
- - Soval and T'Pol
"Just because Captain Archer has earned my respect, doesn't mean I've been contaminated by their emotions."
- - T'Pol, to Soval
"I believe someone once defined a compromise as a solution that neither side is happy with."
"In that case, these talks have been extremely successful."
- - Archer and Shran
"Join me in a drink to celebrate our mutual dissatisfaction."
"Vulcans don't drink... but this occasion merits an exception."
- - Shran and Soval
"Captain, your presence here has not been... overly meddlesome."
- - Soval, to Archer, before his departure
"I think he likes you, pink skin."
"I wouldn't go that far."
- - Shran and Archer, about Soval
Background information Edit
- The first draft script of this episode was issued on 12 November 2002. The post-production version of the final draft was submitted to archive on 4 February 2003.
- Jeffrey Combs and Christopher Shea both played Vorta in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Combs played perhaps his most famous role of Weyoun and Shea played Keevan in the season six episodes "Rocks and Shoals" and "The Magnificent Ferengi". Combs and Shea also appeared together in the latter episode, though Combs was playing the role the Ferengi Brunt.
- Suzie Plakson (Tarah) previously played Dr. Selar, (TNG: "The Schizoid Man") K'Ehleyr, (TNG: "The Emissary", "Reunion") and a female Q. (VOY: "The Q and the Grey")
- This is the first episode of Enterprise to have all the monitors on the bridge changed to display alert status during tactical alert.
- This episode continues the Andorians versus Vulcans arc that started in "The Andorian Incident" and "Shadows of P'Jem".
- This episode introduces Archer's love of Andorian ale. Further references occur in "Proving Ground" and "Babel One".
Links and references Edit
- Scott Bakula as Captain Jonathan Archer
- John Billingsley as Doctor Phlox
- Jolene Blalock as Sub-Commander T'Pol
- Dominic Keating as Lieutenant Malcolm Reed
- Anthony Montgomery as Ensign Travis Mayweather
- Linda Park as Ensign Hoshi Sato
- Connor Trinneer as Commander Charles "Trip" Tucker III
Guest stars Edit
- Jeffrey Combs as Shran
- Gary Graham as Soval
- Vaughn Armstrong as Maxwell Forrest
- Christopher Shea as Telev
- Suzie Plakson as Tarah
Uncredited co-stars Edit
- Evan English as Tanner
- Bryan Heiberg as an operations division crewman
- Douglas Lyons as a Vulcan commando
- Marnie Martin as an operations division crewman
- Jessica Vash as a command division ensign
- David Venafro as an Andorian soldier
- Unknown actor as an Andorian soldier
Stunt double Edit
2097; 2112; AM; analeptic radiation; Andoria; Andorians; Andorian ale; Andorian Empire; Andorian Imperial Council; Andorian Imperial Guard; Andorian rifle; Andorian warship; annexation; Assistant Counsel; biosignature; blindfold; Border Incursions of 2112; champagne; Class D; D'kyr-type; Denobulan Infantry; ear; Earth; envoy; gesture; kilometer; logic; Luna; mutagenic pathogen; navigational sensor; Paan Mokar; Paraaga II; P'Jem; pink skin; Pluto; prejudice;puppet; Revised Intersystem Agreement; Shuttlepod 1; Shuttlepod 2; Starfleet uniforms; stun; sub-commander; surveillance satellite; tactical alert; terraforming; Territorial Compromise; toast; treatise; Treaty of 2097; underwear; V'Lar; Vulcans; Vulcan (planet); Vulcan database; Vulcan High Command; Weytahn
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