Another solid episode with solid Trek principles, about two individuals from two alien species overcoming racial hatred associated with war between their two people. And “The Breach” is solidly executed and valuable to watch, even if the concept has been been done before (“Jetrel” and “Duet” come to mind).
Unfortunately, “The Breach” doesn’t make a lot of room for women in the story. The A-plot revolves around Phlox and his patient, an Antaran named Hudak, who refuses treatment because Phlox’s people committed war crimes against the Antarans centuries earlier.
Archer orders Phlox to treat Hudak, but Phlox refuses to do so without Hudak’s consent.
T’Pol does get a scene with Phlox, but she doesn’t say much – just provides Phlox room to speak about his children. Ultimately, Archer’s persuasion and the conversation with T’Pol help Phlox to confide in Hudak and help Hudak trust Phlox to treat him.
I’m proud to say that my children would consider my grandmother’s attitude archaic. All of them but one. We have grown more open-minded since the last war, but there are still Denobulans who fear Antarans, even hate them. My youngest son, Mettus, was seduced by those people. I did my best to convince him he was mistaken. I told him I wouldn’t tolerate the values he was embracing. It created a rift between us. Maybe I didn’t do enough to reach him. Last time we spoke was nearly ten years ago. You wanted to know what my children would think if they were here now. I can tell you what Mettus would think. He would be happy to have me grant your request and let you die. But that is not the example I tried to set for my children. Why not live and set an example for yours?
But it could have really been anyone at the mess hall table with Phlox. In fact, it might have been better for it to be Hoshi, given her existing friendship with Phlox and how little she gets to do otherwise.
Although she does get to be in a hilarious teaser scene in this episode, in which Phlox introduces her to a tribble, and then promptly feeds the tribble to one of his caged reptiles.
The B-plot features Mayweather, which is cool, leading Reed and Trip to rescue a group of three Denobulan scientists from a treacherous cavern.
He does break his leg at one point and Reed and Trip have to continue alone, but it’s implied they know way less about caving than Mayweather. So cool that he’s given another area of expertise.
Anyway, one of the scientists is a woman, but she doesn’t have a distinct role in the story.
The episode closes with Phlox writing a letter to his estranged son. It’s really quite moving on its own, though not quite in the same league as “Duet” in terms of episodes with similar themes.
Bechdel Test: Fail