Wednesday, March 25, 2015

The Animated Series 2x5 "How Sharper Than a Serpent's Tooth"

rating: *

Memory Alpha summary

via Dan Hauser Trek
More successful than the earlier "Magicks of Megas-Tu," and right there you can see that "Serpent's Tooth" is part of a tradition, and that is Star Trek's arguable defining trope, at least through the duration of Q's appearances, of trying to grapple with the existence of divine beings.

The episode also famously pivots around a Native American crewman, a sort of predecessor to Voyager's Chakotay.  The story itself is not wholly recommendable, spending a lot more time on ideas than making them particularly credible and thereby demonstrating once and more all the limits of the series, although of course the live action show that came before it did about the same on numerous occasions ("The Apple," "Who Mourns for Adonais?").  "Serpent's Tooth" is basically an homage to those stories, and in that regard is also perhaps a sign that the series was mercifully coming to an end (only one episode remained after it).

Perhaps most notable and memorable is in fact the title, which is one of several to draw from Shakespeare.  It may have the distinction of being the most overly elaborate, but it's also artful.  Other than "Eye of the Beholder," it's the only instance in the series where this common practice from the original series is continued, and it's not again until Deep Space Nine when the practice is picked up again.  By Enterprise, it's been completely abandoned, alas.

four quarter analysis
franchise * series * essential * character

notable guest-stars:
James Doohan 

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