Star Trek Picard (S01E09) “Et in Arcadia Ego: Part 1”

Hey there, fellow trekkies. It’s time for my review of the latest episode of Star Trek Picard entitled ‘Et in Arcadia Ego’.

Let’s get right into it.

that’s one giant orchid

The episode opens up with La Sirena hurtling through the trans-warp tunnel. After a bumpy ride, they emerge on the other side and are now in the Ghulion System. The synth homeworld is the fourth planet. It’s called Coppelius. Another ship shows up. It’s a Romulan ship. After a brief firefight, they get a shock when the Borg Cube comes through their own trans-warp tunnel.

Raffi (Michelle Hurd) informs the others there are bogies from the planet headed towards them. They look like giant orchids. One of them swallows the ship and they go down. The crew braces for impact, and Picard (Patrick Stewart) falls unconscious.

There are visions from his recent past, and when he wakes up, he is in sickbay with Agnes (Alison Pill) tending to him. The ship has no power, but she was able to find a rudimentary tricorder to do a simple scan. She informs him there is no sign of trauma.

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Soji, Elnor, Picard, and Agnes in the Borg Cube. Photo from IMDB.
facts and figures

Later, Picard gathers everyone together and breaks the news to them. He has an acute brain abnormality and it’s terminal with no treatment. Picard tries to normalize things, ‘Anyone who treats me like a dying man will run the risk of pissing me off’. The others are momentarily stunned.

Raffi gives off some readings about the planet. It’s a Class M planet, smaller and denser than earth. One small settlement. Soji (Isa Briones) tells them it’s called Coppelius Station. It’s about five kilometers from their ship. The downed Borg Cube is also nearby.

Raffi tells them they have at least a day (maybe two) lead on the Romulan attack force. They prepare to leave the ship, and Raffi gives Soji a weapon. The weather outside is very hot and dry, similar to a desert.

The crew goes towards the Borg Cube, and see it’s badly damaged. They go inside and see that many xBs had survived, including Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan). Elnor (Evan Evagora) also survived the crash. After a brief reunion, Seven says they can get the long-range scanners working. It’s bad news. The Romulan fleet coming has at least 218 warbirds.

the settlement

They prepare to go to the settlement. Picard tells Elnor how proud he is of him. Seven says ‘Keep saving the galaxy Picard.’ They say goodbye and leave Seven and Elnor to help defend the Borg Cube.

Upon reaching the settlement, the crew is met with curiosity from the synths. One of them greets the crew. She introduces himself as Arcana (Jade Ramsey) and is happy to see Soji again. She also recognizes Picard. Soji gives a brief explanation of the imminent attack.

Someone else comes to greet them.  Dr. Altan Inigo Soong. (Brent Spiner) the son of the man who created Data. There is also Sutra, who is Jana’s sister. She looks like Soji but has yellow eyes. As the crew goes into more detail with their story, Sutra comes up with a theory that the ‘Admonition’ was meant for a synthetic mind.

Sutra is able to use the Vulcan art of mind-melding to retrieve the Admonition from Agnes’ memory. It’s actually a prophecy from a more advanced race of synths. Later, Agnes is able to talk with Dr. Soong. They speak about Bruce. ‘You owe a great debt.’ Dr. Soong offers Agnes a chance at redemption.

switching sides

He shows her the latest project he’s been working on. It’s a ‘golem’. A synth body with no brain. There is talk about mind transfer. Sutra speaks with the others. She is considering the idea to summon the advanced race to help fight the Romulans. There is a synthetic cat named Spot II, created in homage to Data’s original cat Spot.

Raffi and Rios go back to try and fix the ship so they can take the synths with them and get away before the Romulans come. Picard sends out a priority transmission to Starfleet Command. He tells them there is a first contact situation. He doesn’t get any response.

Narek (Harry Treadaway) is in ‘prison’. Soji confronts him. Afterward, Soji asks Picard some tough questions. Mostly about if there is a logic in sacrifice and the calculus of life and death. Picard is starting to get very worried about what he is hearing. ‘What is killing is the only way to survive?’

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Picard and Soji have a serious conversation. Photo from IMDB.
a storm is coming

Sutra visits Narek in his prison. Offers him a deal to get out. Shortly afterward, Sutra summons the others. Saga (Nikita Ramsey) is dead. Sutra convinces the others it was Narek who killed her. She makes an impassioned speech about summoning the advanced synths to come to and fight off the Romulans.

Picard tries to reason with them. He says he wants to advocate for them, and get Starfleet to lift the ban. Dr. Soong dissuades the others, and the plans to reach out to the advanced synths to come and fight the Romulans are going forward. They place Picard under house arrest so he can’t interfere.

The Romulan Fleet is now less than a day away.

**

Well, this was an interesting episode. Lots of plot twists and turns. They are well set-up for Part II. They have unleashed a storm that they may not survive.

I can’t wait until next week to see how this plays out.

Catch another episode of Star Trek Picard on Thursday, March 26 on CBS All-Access and Crave

Thanks for reading my review!