There are many reasons why Star Trek: Enterprise didn’t last beyond four seasons
I’m one of the many fans of Star Trek: Enterprise who has enjoyed watching the show more than once. While I think there were some issues with the series, I don’t believe it could be attributed to one person or to one situation. Every television show on the air has struggled with problems at one time or another, some of those may have to do with casting while others can be attributed to writers, producers, or the studio executives. But, for Enterprise, to lay the blame at the feet of the actors isn’t accurate.
In an article I read recently, the author lists several reasons why he believes Enterprise failed. One of those reasons was Jolene Blalock, who he believes cannot act. In fact, he’s quite critical of the actress, going so far as to say that “She’s useful whenever you want to photograph a Vulcan female in her underwear (something the show, wisely, did a lot of) but Blalock’s not much good for anything else.” I have to disagree.
How Jolene Blalock actually helped Star Trek: Enterprise
She portrayed a Vulcan with repressed emotions very well, but there were times when emotions slipped through. Vulcans are not perfect at hiding them all the time. Even Spock was taunted into losing his temper by Captain Kirk. Vulcans, much like humans, slip up at times, and that’s why T’Pol wasn’t always able to hide what she was feeling. She was forced into a mind meld after which she contracted Pa’narr Syndrome, a disease that affects the brain and neurological control. One only has to watch Sarek as he suffers with the disease on Star Trek: The Next Generation to see what it can do to a Vulcan.
There were so many times when Blalock was called upon to exhibit a range of emotions that only a good actress could. When T’Pol was first exposed to trellium-D, she was overcome with feelings of paranoia and anger, even becoming violent. And even after the exposure, her emotions remained on shaky ground. While trying to fix the problems trellium-D had caused, she ended up getting addicted, and the prolonged exposure permanently damaged her ability to control her emotions. So, no, she didn’t act like the typical Vulcan.
One only has to watch the season four episodes “Demons” and “Terra Prime” to see that Blalock carried her own with this series. While I choose to disagree with the author of the above-mentioned article, I know there are others who will disagree with me. But I don’t believe the demise of Enterprise is attributable to the actors, especially not Jolene Blalock.