On Star Trek: Lower Decks, even when the crew on the USS Cerritos have a little R & R, they still happen to find themselves in crazy situations. The ship goes into warp and has a long travel ahead of them so in the down time, everyone is just hanging out. For the young ensigns, they find it a good opportunity to network and bond with their department heads thinking it will help their career.
For Boimler, he fails to make plans ahead of time and needs a bridge buddy during the journey. He tries to tag a long with his friends during their hangouts. It demonstrates Brad’s aspirations to be something more and climb the Starfleet ladder. But it also shows his lack of social skills and how it holds him back because he always flubs each situation.
However, Starfleet isn’t the only group in the region as we are introduced to other ships from the Klingons and Vulcans. As true to the series name, the episode explores the lower decks of these vessels as well. Seeing the inner workings of these different cultures expands the world building more in the Star Trek Universe.
Though initially this seems as a gimmick to look at how ensigns are on other ships, the episode cleverly interweaves these different stories into a bigger conflict. It even contributes to the season’s overarching Pakled war arc providing more insight into how it all started.
The entire motif of different lower decks is entertaining. The episode does a good job fleshing out the two leads from the Klingon and Vulcan ship. It’s a surprising amount of character development for the amount of screen time they have. Mostly everyone starts at the bottom but these new characters show different examples of greatness to help them move up the ranks or gain recognition.
“wej Duj” has some of the more exciting action sequences this season. On board the Klingon ship there are some brutal fights. Then some of the space battles have a grander feel to them considering the different sides involved and the unexpected team-ups.
The laughs are pretty good. More for comedic effect than actual storytelling, we even see other alien races’ lower decks. There is also some good attention to detail and continuity from before. During one of the scenes, Rutherford can be seen building his Deep Space Nine model kit.
The season two penultimate episode expertly crafts various stories of different lower decks crews and interweaves them into a gripping larger conflict. There’s some of the series’ best action and some good laughs.
New episodes of Star Trek: Lower Decks are released Thursdays on Paramount+.
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