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PHOTOGRAPHY

ENTERPRISE: THE COMPLETE FIRST SEASON

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 26 episodes on seven discs, deleted scenes, outtakes, featurettes, pilot audio commentary, text commentary tracks, and featurettes

STUDIO: PARAMOUNT

RELEASE DATE: 5-3-2005

DISC 1: BROKEN BOW, FIGHT OR FLIGHT, STRANGE NEW WORLD

DISC 2: UNEXPECTED, TERRA NOVA, THE ANDORIAN INCIDENT, BREAKING THE ICE

DISC 3: CIVILIZATION, FORTUNATE SON, COLD FRONT, SILENT ENEMY

DISC 4: DEAR DOCTOR, SLEEPING DOGS, SHADOWS OF P'JEM, SHUTTLEPOD ONE

DISC 5: FUSION, ROGUE PLANET, ACQUISTION, OASIS

DISC 6: DETAINED, VOX SOLA, FALLEN HERO, DESERT CROSSING

DISC 7: TWO DAYS AND TWO NIGHTS, SHOCKWAVE Part One

ANALYSIS: STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE had a grand idea behind of doing a

prequel show showing the first days leading to the formation of the Federation (starting in 2151 AD), but it's execution sometimes left much to be desired. The first season had some great episodes (THE ANDORIAN INCIDENT, FUSION, FALLEN HERO, DESERT CROSSING, TWO DAYS AND TWO NIGHTS, SHOCKWAVE Part One), but also some moments (and episodes) weren't that good (like T'Pol saying the Captain needs to have sex soon in FALLEN HERO). The second season is an improvement over season one, but the third and fourth seasons are even better (with the fourth season being the best of the series). Scott Bakula leads the way as Captain Archer of the first starship called Enterprise. His second in command is Vulcan Officer T'Pol (Jolene Blalock). Her interactions with Trip (aka Commander Tucker) are more interesting now since I now where it will all lead in later seasons. The prequel series did have interesting spins on the logical Vulcans while breathing life into the Andorians. Still the Ferengi episode (ACQUISTION) proves only STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE NINE can do the Ferengi justice (with well written stories about them).

VIDEO/AUDIO: All 26 episodes are presented in 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen. Image detail is great. The transfer is a little soft at times (a little blurry), but the episodes do look better than when I saw on TV.

All episodes are in Englsih 5.1 Dolby Surround (you can also hear any of them in English 2.0 Dolby Surround) with the option of English subtitles. Dialogue is clear as it was on the other Star Trek TV on DVD sets. Music and sound effects are very distinctive sometimes (the music does almost drown out the dialogue in a few scenes). I'm disappointed agian that Paramount still hasn't included foreign subtitle tracks for their STAR TREK TV show sets.

SPECIAL FEATURES: STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE Season One has an assortment of extras. Deleted scenes are on most of the discs (except disc 2 and disc 3). Many of the deleted scenes aren't that thrilling, but I do love the deleted scenes from SHUTTLEPOD ONE and FALLEN HERO. The text commentaries for BROKEN BOW, THE ANDORIAN INCIDENT, and VOX SOLA provide a wealth of info on the episode's productions, Star Trek facts, and some whimsical points they make about certain things. Also Brannon Braga and Rick Berman did an audio commentary for BROKEN BOW (Hopefully one or two cast commentaries will be on a future season set).

Several featurettes appear on disc 7. CREATING ENTERPRISE goes into the origins of why a prequel series was made and how they approached various aspects of the show. O CAPTAIN! MY CAPTAIN: A PROFILE OF SCOTT BAKULA has his fellow actors (and the crew) giving praise for Scott and how easy he is to get along with. CAST IMPRESSIONS: SEASON ONE has the cast of the show talking about their characters and how they were cast. INSIDE SHUTTLEPOD ONE is a look at the character driven episode, SHUTTLEPOD ONE, while STAR TREK TIME TRAVEL: TEMPORAL COLD WARS AND BEYOND has Berman and Braga blaming UPN/Paramount for insisting on the temporal cold war storyline (which they felt would have been better as it's own series).

ENTERPRISE SECRETS shows how lighting effects on the warp core are created (and the magic behind the replicators). Actor Vaughn Armstrong sings again before he talks about playing Admiral Forrest and a Klingon in ADMIRAL FORREST TAKES CENTER STAGE. However, the nine minute outtake reel is the best extra on disc seven (I love the moment where Archer shows up (at T'Pol's quarters) with a stogie in his mouth and two wine glasses (while the Captain and Tenile bit is funny too). The first hidden featurette on disc 7 has Jolene Blalock talk about SHADOWS OF P'JEM. Another hidden featurette focuses on the visual effects shot of the Klingon homeworld in BROKEN BOW while a third one has a graphics artist talk about design touches on the sets.

MENUS: The menus have a nice design to them. The menus for the episodes reflect the display panels on the Enterprise bridge. These menus are definitely my favorite of any Star Trek DVD.

PACKAGING: The sturdy plastic case (that you take apart in two) actually protects the digipack case. No cracks in any of the trays. The packagaing is the nicest of any STAR TREK TV on DVD set. You even get ae episode guide to the first season ina little booklet that comes with th set.

FINAL ANALYSIS: Paramount has asembled a great group of extras for STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE. I hope future season sets will have better transfers for the episodes (less softness). If you're a fan of the show, go buy it. If you want the best STAR TREK, wait for season 3 and 4 to hit DVD (then go buy season one and season two if you're hooked).

this DVD Review is (c)5-4-2005 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com and look for additional content at http://www.livejournal.com/users/enterlinemedia