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Fortunate Son
Star Trek: Enterprise, episode 10 (1.10)

Last Modified: 25 Sep 2007 13:11:49

         
Cast:
Scott Bakula   IMDB   Captain Jonathan Archer
Connor Trinneer   IMDB   Commander Charles Tucker III
Jolene Blalock   IMDB   Sub-Commander T'Pol
Dominic Keating   IMDB   Lieutenant Malcolm Reed
Anthony Montgomery   IMDB   Ensign Travis Mayweather
Linda Park   IMDB   Ensign Hoshi Sato
John Billingsley   IMDB   Chief Medical Officer Phlox
Guest Cast:
Lawrence Monoson   IMDB   First Officer Matthew Ryan
Kieran Mulroney   IMDB   Shaw
Vaughn Armstrong   IMDB   Admiral Maxwell Forrest
Danny Goldring   IMDB   Nausicaan Captain
Charles Lucia   IMDB   Captain Keene
D. Elliot Woods   IMDB   Prisoner
Daniel Henson   IMDB   Boy
Elyssa D. Vito   IMDB   Girl
Director:
Levar Burton   IMDB
Author:
James Duff   IMDB
Published
DVD   ST:ENT DVD #02
VHS   ST:ENT VHS 1.5
Teaser
Enterprise Teaser #010: Fortunate Son [S-VCD]
Enterprise Teaser #010: Fortunate Son

Enterprise must intervene when the leader of a human freighter crew sets out for revenge against alien pirates.
Synopsis
Sent by Admiral Forrest to respond to an automated distress call, Enterprise intercepts the Earth cargo freighter Fortunate and finds it badly damaged and not responding to hails. Captain Archer leads an away team to board the vessel, and they are greeted by the freighter's acting commander, First Officer Matthew Ryan. Ryan informs Archer that the Fortunate was attacked by Nausicaan pirates, who have been harassing freighters in the sector for years, including the one Ensign Mayweather grew up on. Claiming the distress call was a mistake, Ryan resists Archer's overtures of help, but Phlox insists on tending to the injured captain. Once Phlox determines that Captain Keene will need two or three days of treatment, Archer talks Ryan into letting Enterprise engineers come aboard the Fortunate to upgrade its defenses. This forces Ryan and another crewman named Shaw to take special precautions to hide their secret: they have a Prisoner on board whom they are torturing for information.

Later, a proud Mayweather gives Ryan a tour of the impressive new Enterprise. They bond as fellow "boomers" who both grew up on freighters, but Ryan proves to be disdainful toward Mayweather for having left his parents' cargo ship to join Starfleet. Meanwhile on the Fortunate, suspicious activity leads T'Pol to run scans and detect the bio-signs of an injured Nausicaan. Informed of this discovery, Archer confronts Ryan, who confesses they indeed are keeping a prisoner and argues they have every right to. Archer concurs, but counters that he also has a right to remove the improvements made on the freighter. Ryan appears to relent and let Archer and his team see the prisoner, but as he leads them into a cargo module, it proves to be double-cross - Ryan and Shaw trap them in the compartment with a breach in its hull, and detach it from the freighter.

The Fortunate then fires upon Enterprise and jumps to warp, escaping while Enterprise rescues the trapped crewmen. Commander Tucker sets out to the repair the damaged long-range sensors so Enterprise can track the renegade freighter, which they figure is after revenge against the Nausicaans. Mayweather approaches Archer and asks him to consider that maybe they should stay out of Ryan's way. But Archer argues that human beings have a code of behavior whether they're Starfleet Officers or "space boomers," and Mayweather agrees. On the Fortunate, Ryan succeeds in beating the information he wants out of his prisoner, namely the shield frequency codes for the Nausicaan raider ships. They find the ship that attacked them and chase it to an asteroid where two other Nausicaan vessels are off-loading cargo to a docking station. Ryan orders an apprehensive Shaw to fire weapons, but their plasma bursts fail to penetrate the Nausicaan shields. A counterattack disables their engines and ability to escape, so the crew prepares to fight the Nausicaans face-to-face as they board the freighter to retrieve the captive. Meanwhile Enterprise has detected the Fortunate's weapons fire and sets course to intercept. As an intense firefight ensues on the Fortunate, Archer hails one of the Nausicaan Captains to negotiate a peaceful solution, letting the freighter go in exchange for the hostage. Faced with the superior firepower of the NX-Class Enterprise, the Nausicaan captain agrees to let Archer deliver the prisoner, but he must be quick or he'll "take his chances" with an assault on both ships. Archer contacts Ryan and implores him to listen to reason. Ryan stubbornly refuses to give up his hostage, but then Mayweather speaks up and chastises Ryan for putting all freighter crews at risk to satisfy his thirst for revenge. When the Nausicaan ships start firing, Ryan finally gives in and releases the hostage to the boarding party, and the Nausicaan ships retreat. Ryan is later stripped of his rank by Captain Keene, and Keene confesses to Archer that it'll be hard for freighter crews to get used to seeing the space they've been traveling for three generations get a lot more crowded.
Reviews

By Jamahl Epsicokhan on 03 Mar 2003 09:10:22
"Fortunate Son" is the first episode of Enterprise that really seems to break free of the past decade of Trek and take us in a fresh-feeling direction. It takes full advantage of this show's central concept of fledgling space travel and gives us some crucial information about non-Starfleet cargo-runner humans in space. The result is an episode showcasing an intriguing set of perspectives on the human role in the interstellar community and how those perspectives are likely facing near-imminent...

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By PsiPhi on 24 Dec 2002 09:30:51
Okay, it's clearly time for those individuals making the ENT previews to get with the program, as this is the second week in a row that they've been seriously, and unpleasantly, misleading. With "Civilization" last week, it looked as though the focus was "Archer romances the alien babe of the week," when in fact that was a fairly peripheral part of the show. This time, "Fortunate Son" looked from advance publicity as though it was going to be one of those "cast member with divided heritage has...

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By The Trek Nation on 17 Dec 2002 17:26:47
Despite being a bit didactic and predictable, 'Fortunate Son' improves on last week's 'Civilization' by tackling a subject that's never been adequately addressed on previous Trek shows - the relationship between merchant ships and Starfleet. Plus we finally get to see Mayweather's mettle. I'm ambivalent about the depth of his loyalty to Starfleet, though perhaps that would be different under a different captain than Archer; the previews led us to believe that the two would have a confrontation,...

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