When Star Trek: Enterprise began in 2001, it started with a grueling schedule of twenty-six episodes per season, much like the other Star Trek series had done. But series star Scott Bakula, who portrayed Captain Jonathan Archer for the entire four-year run of the series, wasn't a fan of the schedule.
In 2012, Bakula and the rest of the cast got together with executive producer and co-creaator Brannon Braga for a special feature for Enterprise's season two Blue-ray edition, and he didn't hold back when it came to his opinion on how many episodes were being shot. [via Screenrant]
"Listen, I’m the one who fought, and you guys can all blame me, but I said [doing] 26 episodes a year is stupid… Absolutely. If you recall, we were airing shows, [two] new shows on the same night. I said, what the hell was that all about? It was like, you have too much product, you don’t have room to air it, and [the cast is] exhausted."- Scott Bakula
Season three and four of the series were reduced to twenty-two episodes each, but that could have had something to do with the ratings not being what UPN wanted. Bakula also agreed with Braga when it came to the timing of the series, saying it should not have debuted right after Star Trek: Voyager.
"We should not have come on right on the heels of Voyager. That was the other thing. In a perfect world. But I know what the world was. The world was, ‘We have to launch UPN, we have to hold up UPN.’ But… in a perfect world, if we could have waited and let the smoke settle. Let you [Rick Berman and Brannon Braga] relax, rest…"- Scott Bakula
There has been much speculation on whether the timing of the series' release had a lot to do with the reason why it only lasted four seasons. Some call it franchise burnout, and that's certainly a possibility. Others blame it on poor writing. It wasn't until Manny Coto took over in that the series really began to take off in season four, and by then, it was too late. Midway through that season, the cast learned that the show would be cancelled. Whether it was because of the length of the seasons, the timing of the release, or any other number of reasons, Enterprise didn't have much of a chance with UPN. To this day, that remains a sore spot with Enterprise fans.