VULCAN T&A

I just finished watching the “Enterprise” third season premier, “The Xindi.” The show itself was rather dull; so far, this series has yet to hit the level of enjoyability of “Star Trek” or “Next Generation.”

What’s particularly amusing is the continued use of Jolene Blaylock almost entirely as a sex object. From the beginning, they’ve used the lamest ploys to get her in scanty outfits. I thought the bizarre ritual of having to decontaminate in one’s underwear by smearing ointment all over oneself was the lowest point, but tonight’s episode easily exceeded that. I have no objection to seeing Blaylock’s body; indeed, as best I can determine, displaying it is her primary talent. But that’s not really supposed to be the point of a sci-fi show, let alone one in the Trek universe.

Update (1312): Apropos Jen and Kathy’s comments, I am reminded that the only thing new here is the blatancy. While Uhura in a mini skirt may not have been exploitative in the context of 1966-69, clearly the only reason to have the Deana Troi character on TNG was her sex appeal. They even put her in a different uniform in order to accentuate her bosom. I don’t recall a comparable character on DS9 and didn’t watch Voyager much, although I seem to recall that they introduced a blonde Borg female toward the end of that run.

FILED UNDER: Popular Culture
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Paul says:

    So am I to understand that they came close but you did not see pictures of Jolene Blaylock nude?

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey, that’s the closest a lot of Trek fans are going to get to a girl. . .

  3. JohnC says:

    That was astoundingly gratuitous.

  4. Paul says:

    John… You obviously don’t get the joke…

    Search the archive.

  5. Jay Solo says:

    Argh! There was a premier tonight?! Sheesh.

  6. 42nd SSD says:

    I think it’s called the “we’re desperate” syndrome, otherwise known as the “T&A is cheaper than a good story and draws a bigger crowd” rule. Makes me wonder about the idea of using T&A to increase “Meet the Press”‘s draw. (Is Meet the Press still on? I haven’t watched TV in ages… what year is this again? 1928? Good.)

    Maybe they should just change the Star Trek theme to “Taps”.

  7. mtpolitics says:

    Personally, I don’t think that Jolene Blaylock is all that hot.

    To me, Linda Park is much hotter.

  8. jen says:

    I have no objection to seeing Blaylock’s body; indeed, as best I can determine, displaying it is her primary talent. But that’s not really supposed to be the point of a sci-fi show, let alone one in the Trek universe.

    OK, you’re kidding right?

    Think back to the Original Star Trek…all of the women were in skimpy outfits, which back then were pretty scandalous for national TV. This is just more of the same, imho.

  9. James Joyner says:

    Jen,

    You make a point. Although I think Roddenberry saw miniskirts more as a political statement–a symbol of women’s liberation–than about selling sex. And the female characters were generally rather ancillary, anyway, whereas T’Pol is a central character in Enterprise.

  10. Kathy K says:

    What jen said. Also, I suspect that if the original weren’t ‘selling sex’ that Kirk wouldn’t have ‘fallen in love’ with every babe that he met…

  11. jen says:

    When I first wrote that I wasn’t thinking of Uhura, really. I was thinking of the “alien” babes that Kirk drooled over. Their outfits were very skimpy – lots of skin. And that was blatant in the late 60s. I don’t care that they were ancillary – it was in every episode.

  12. Bryan C says:

    Oh definitely, the original Trek was certainly no exception in terms of alien babe appeal. It’s said that the chief costume designer, William Theiss, considered the appeal of a female costume to be in direct proportion to how likely it seemed that the actress would fall out of it.

    DS9 had actually three attractive female regulars: Major Kira and two incarnations of Dax. And there were generally lots of scantily clad females in Quark’s bar.

    I think I’ll stop now. It’s starting to sound like I know waaay too much about this topic.

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