Synopsis: ‘wej Duj’ sees the crew of the U.S.S Cerritos take a break from duty. Consequently, we see them get to enjoy the holodecks. However, we also see what happens aboard other vessels too, and get to see events on some Klingon and Vulcan “lower decks” . . .
Using the “rest and recreation” trope is a smart move in ‘wej Duj’. It’s something that has been used in other Trek series, with varying levels of success, over the years. In some ways, this week’s offering is the complete opposite of last week’s episode. The show’s writers find a smart way to once more cast the lovable Ensign Brad Boimler (Jack Quaid) as the geeky outsider. The rest of the crew get “bridge buddies”, which Boimler doesn’t manage to. Other events that worked well are some “mother and daughter” time between Mariner (Tawny Newsome) and Captain Freeman (Dawnn Lewis). Also, it was great to see the ship actually face danger, too.
Voices & Characterization
The dialogue between Mariner (Tawny Newsome) and her mother, Captain Freeman (Dawnn Lewis) showed just how vital good work is. The two actors managed to convey exactly the relationship that the show sees them enjoy/endure. It’s vital for this sort of understanding to come across, and this was a great example of it working well. Furthermore, it was in keeping with their characters.
Once more we see some wonderful examples of attention to detail. The show really uses the history of Star Trek to its advantage, and this was some great proof of that fact. Despite the fact that it’s animated, all of the feelings of hostility and impending death were there, aboard the Klingon ship. Conversely, the atmosphere of emotionlessness was brought to life skillfully, with the Vulcan ship, too.
‘wej Duj’ wasn’t the greatest episode of Lower Decks there’s been. But it was better than some of last season’s “fillers”. That’s a testament to the show, as now even the off weeks are better. Nice to see the reference to Star Trek V: The Final Frontier (1989) as Boimler (Jack Quaid) donned Kirk’s hover boots. The continued use of the Pakleds also drew a few laughs, in particular, their “red alarm”. And finally, hearing how Commander Ransom (Jerry O’Connell) also lied to impress his superiors was a great bit of work. It showed the unofficial “rules” of Starfleet, and smartly mimicked similar aspects that have appeared in other series over the years.
Next Friday (15.10.2021), May The Verse Be With You will feature a Lower Decks special poem – it’s been promised for a while now . . .
- Voices & Characterization8.8