The Shuttle Pod Crew Gets Ready For the End In “Et In Arcadia Ego, Part 1”

‘Star Trek: Picard’ Season 1, Episode 9

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The entire complement of the Shuttle Pod gathers round their podcasting mics to discuss the penultimate episode of the first season of Star Trek: Picard. The episode came as a bit of a change of pace after the previous eight episodes. Particularly after episode 8, “Broken Pieces”, where our heroes really start “putting the pieces together” (I don’t care if you excuse the pun, I’m going to keep using it), episode 9, “Et In Arcadia Ego, Part I” felt like a bit of a step backwards in terms of directionality for the plot. Can the writers deliver a cracking finale next week?

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I was okay with Sutra being able to mind meld. She lives in a colony of highly advanced artificial beings. It’s reasonable to me that she’d be able to master the underlying biology and replicate it within herself.

Sutra’s villainy was obvious to us, but not necessarily to the other androids or even Soong. The timeline of events suggests that she is one of the earliest androids built on Coppelius, which means she probably has a certain seniority. If she was one of Soong and Maddox’s first creations, Soong might be blind to her faults as well. She also lost her brother and sister to Oh’s machinations, which lends her a tragic credibility.

I don’t get why these highly advanced engineered AI life forms don’t build x 1000000 more. Why she could even self destruct and then from all the pieces they could clone a million of her. Also why would they not “upgrade” to super strength, ability to breath in space, float, mind meld, etc. Also why not ensure you can also project yourself as holograms?

Great points. I really, really wish they hadn’t gone the Synth-route.

Heck, I started worrying after the episode that flash-backed to Mars and showed the “limited models” being used as slave labor and treated badly by enlighten (post) TNG-era humans.

Or was it when it was relieved that these new androids are nu-BSG-style Cylons and could be created by a single neuron… or whatever.

What’s interesting to me is that Picard, as Admiral in charge of the rescue armada, would authorize the use of robots who have been almost sadistically programmed with emotions to act as slaves. Was he missing Data that much that he let it slide? Was it the order he misses as Locutus? He doesn’t want to admit he likes robots versus humans because they get jobs done that he wants them hidden under emotions? Tied into the fact that after the defeat he doubles down on it not being due to AI and then seemingly alienates his friends, even Riker/Troy who lost their kid on his watch, makes it even more curious.
Honestly the most logical explanation is that he is compromised by the Borg and that they were trying to push the Federation to develop perfect engineered AI that they could do away with organics and Picard was their tool. You potentially was compromised by the Borg in First Contact where he seemed to ‘talk’ before hitting the cube in the exact weak spot that he didn’t know about an hour before (unless he really condemned those Starfleet officers lost in the battle to death out of a want to be the hero).
Another explanation is that he subconsciously just found Data was his match being more ordered and rational (note that Picard hated kids, didn’t play poker with his crew, etc) and had a huge blind spot to the point he would let ethics slip in the authorize anything to get another Data.

Unmentioned *(but very important!): this is the first Star Trek episode to ever drop a Lou Reed reference. When Jurati says, “They hit us with a flower” This is a line from Vicious, by Lou Reed:

You hit me with a flower
You do it every hour
Oh, baby, you’re so vicious
You want me to hit you with a stick
But all I’ve got’s a guitar pick
Huh, baby, you’re so vicious
When I watch you come
Baby, I just want to run far away
You’re not the kind of person ’round I want to stay

Guess I should look it up, but I still don’t know who Lou Reed is.

You should know. Definitely.

You all sound so bored and frustrated with this stuff as the rest of us are haha

Most atrocious Star Trek adventure since… let’s see, the one wherein Wilson Cruz is resurrected by the Mushroom People? Bananapants, as Mr. Rapp would phrase it. Does Kurtzman owe Akiva Goldsman money or something? Akiva has the beguiling ability to make Kurtzman Trek even worse. All this would be slightly amusing in an absurd and depressing way, if Patrick Stewart weren’t being sullied by it all. Oh well, hopefully his paycheck is sizable enough to soothe any ignominy incurred.