Commander Garrett

Story: Embracing the Winds
Written By: James Kerwin & Vic Mignogna
Series: Star Trek Continues
Year: 2016

This episode deals with something from the Original Series that always bugged me.  The final episode, "The Turnabout Intruder" was a sexist crap episode, a pity of an episode to go out on...and it always felt off to me, because in the more idealized future represented in Trek, it seems a shame that it implied that women couldn't be captains of Starships. Roddenberry's "The Cage" actually had a female first it was right there in the beginning.  You go to Enterprise and the second captain of an NX ship is a I personally was choosing to ignore the crappy idea presented in passing in "Turnabout Intruder" and just move on.  This episode of "Star Trek Continues" decides to address that issue though, and to give some legitimacy to the idea, and use it to present it smartly and show it was a wrongheaded move in Starfleet.
The episode's main story is that the USS Hood had a catastrophic malfunction, which disrupted life support, and killed the entire crew.  The Enterprise is sent to salvage the ship, while Kirk and Spock are called to a Starbase to meet with Commodore Gray.  Spock has been chosen to become the new captain of the Hood, but when a female Commander who applied for the position asks for an appeal, claiming that she has only been passed over because she is a woman, Kirk is forced to try and help sort out the situation, all while not wanting to lose Spock in the process.

The episode addresses the issue I had with the final episode of TOS, but does so in a smart way.  It makes the issue that Starfleet is attempting to avoid irritating the Tellarites, thus cause them to make good on a threat to withdraw from the Federation, by just having a bit of an unwritten rule to keep women out of the Captain's chair of the Constitution-class ships.  The episode has a bit of a trial...not really a trial, but more of a official inquiry to present the case of both Commander Garret and Spock, and decide once and for all who should get the Captaincy of the Hood.

Meanwhile, the Enterprise (being commanded by Scotty) heads to the Hood, but attempts to figure out what happened to it before towing it home, because they don't want to (wisely) take the risk f it happening to the Enterprise as well.  There is a bit of a smaller story with Chekov, who is clearly trying to earn his Lieutenant stripes (this was also seen briefly in the previous episode "Come Not Between the Dragons"). Scotty and a team head over to the Hood, but things go awry and the ship is nearing explosion, luckily Chekov does a little something techy on the Enterprise and he is able to lower the Hood's shields in order to return the away team back.  It is a nice little character arc which ends with him becoming a Lieutenant.

The episode had a nice bit of character stuff, and it nicely addressed an issue  I have long had with a small aspect of TOS.  I am hopeful that the plan for STC's final episodes comes to fruition, because I just would love to see 6 more episodes from these guys. They make real Trek stories, ones about issues, told in a way Trek always had...and with pitch perfect TOS style.  This was a solid episode, I wouldn't rank it as STC's best, but it has a lot to offer.

NEXT TIME: A Duplicate Defiant