Lower Decks 2.1 Strange Energies – A TV Review

Lower Decks is back and hopefully this is the start of 6 months of new Star Trek with hopefully Picard and Discovery to follow. I found Season 1 somewhat mediocre but was surprisingly excited about this week’s premiere. Perhaps it was because it was shown only 1 day later than the US in the UK or perhaps it was because I was suffering from Trek withdrawal, either way I was right in there.

The first episode ‘Strange Energies’ was entertaining, taking a swipe at the trope of God Hood common too much of Star Trek and especially the Original Series. We see Mariner missing Boimler but getting on with her Mum and Ransom deified by an accident.

The story started strong with Mariner fighting off Cardassians, brilliantly realised in cartoon form but subverting me from the start. Last season I felt Mariner was too OP and this opening played right into this until it was revealed to be a holodeck program. For the rest of the story Mariner was less competent and this worked better.

The minutiae of the episodes continue to work well with in jokes and references galore and I loved the mundanity of the job being done, getting a planet to choose a phone number. Sadly, Tendi and Rutherford were side-lined to a B-plot yet again. This was mildly interesting, but they really need to take more of a centre stage this year

All in all a great start and I look forward to the rest of the season and more Captain Riker.

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