The crew takes shore leave on the famous pleasure planet of Risa. For many, it is anything but a vacation.
- "Captain's personal log, February 18, 2152. It took a while but we finally made it to Risa. With any luck, this will be my last log entry for the next two days."
After two aborted attempts, the Enterprise finally arrives at the pleasure planet of Risa. Since they can only stay for two days, the crew draws lots to see who can take shore leave and who must stay on board to keep the ship running. Captain Archer, Ensigns Hoshi Sato and Travis Mayweather, Commander Trip Tucker and Lieutenant Malcolm Reed get to be among the lucky few who get to go down. Doctor Phlox also gets shore leave which he plans on spending by not going down to the planet but by hibernating, telling T'Pol and Crewman Cutler to wake him up only if there is a medical emergency. Captain Archer feels bad going down while half the crew has to stay on board, but T'Pol reassures him that he need not worry because everyone drew lots and it was a fair draw. He still feels uneasy, believing the crew should come first, but she insists that he needs a vacation.
On their way down to the planet in a shuttlecraft, they discuss their plans. Travis plans to spend his shore leave rock climbing on a place called Galartha where the cliff-face changes pitch while one climbs it; Malcolm and Trip plan on broadening their "cultural horizons", as they state somewhat mischievously, making Hoshi wonder if that is all they think about. Hoshi herself plans on doing something constructive with her time, such as learning new languages without relying on her translator so much. Malcolm and Trip poke fun at her, teasing her that she only has two days which she probably shouldn't be spending by just merely talking to people. Captain Archer does not seem nearly as excited and adventurous about his plans for shore leave, stating that he got a little villa overlooking the ocean and plans on relaxing there with Porthos and reading.
Down on the planet, Archer goes to his villa overlooking the ocean to find that T'Pol left him a copy of The Teachings of Surak to read. While he gets ready to spend some quiet time alone relaxing, Tucker and Reed, who plan to spend their shore leave seeking female companionship, go to a bar where they meet two beautiful women who suggest a stroll down to the subterranean gardens. Malcolm and Trip eagerly accept. The women lure them to a secluded place that does not resemble gardens at all, suddenly asking them how much starship captains get paid on their world and about the kind of valuables they have. Tucker and Reed quickly realize that there has obviously been a misunderstanding here, but before they can explain, they find out that the alien women are actually male thieves in disguise, who, disgusted to find that Tucker and Reed are carrying nothing of value, knock them out with their weapons and steal their clothes so they can sell them.
Back on the ship, T'Pol receives a message from Mayweather, asking her to send down a shuttle for him to come up; he had a little rock-climbing accident, currently being treated in the central hospital. He complains that not only does the rock face change but that it also has handholds that change - causing him to fall. T'Pol asks him why he didn't let them treat him down there on the planet, but Mayweather explains that he is not too fond of alien hospitals and wanted his own doctor to take a look at him. However, he soon finds out that Phlox is actually not available as he is in hibernation. Mayweather is not too happy about this, especially since he has been experiencing difficulty breathing. To be sure, they take him to sickbay for observation.
Down on the planet, Tucker and Reed finally regain consciousness. Their hands are tied and the aliens have stripped them down to their underwear. They realize that they have been down there all night and that shore leave is almost half over. They scream asking for help, but no one can hear them as the aliens sealed the door when leaving them down there. While Tucker is angry, stating that he doesn't plan on spending his short time on the planet tied down in some basement, Malcolm notes that the Vulcan database never mentioned anything about crime on Risa. Trip states that actually it contained some warning about such things, and before they know it, they start arguing with and blaming each other for their situation.
On the ship, Travis' health is deteriorating further and he is experiencing more difficulty breathing. It appears as if the pain medication he was given on Risa has caused an allergic reaction. Crewman Cutler recommends they wake up Phlox to treat Travis. However, the doctor isn't fully awake and it takes him a while to both remember what he's supposed to be doing and how to treat Travis. However, despite his almost delirious state, he finally manages to treat him, confirming that he has had an allergic reaction. He promptly passes out face down on a biobed the moment he has finished treating Travis.
In the meantime, Sato, who has been planning to spend her shore leave learning new languages, strikes up a conversation with an elderly Risan couple, who are surprised that she speaks their language so well and that she bothered to learn it in the first place, since so few people do. After the couple leaves, an alien male approaches Sato. He overheard her conversation with the Risan couple and is fascinated by her ability to learn new languages so rapidly. He tells her the name of his home planet (which is quite long). When Sato asks him to repeat it more slowly, he informs her that to do so would change the meaning of what is said. Intrigued, Sato continues to talk with him, trying to learn his language. He invites her to a steam-pool that he has been planning on visiting and she agrees to join him. They get along quite well, and Sato ends up spending the night with him.
Meanwhile, Captain Archer who has been spending quite some time relaxing and reading the book T'Pol gave him, meets a beautiful alien woman named Keyla who appears somewhat reserved and reluctant to share more about herself with him. She says she doesn't want to spoil their good time by telling Archer everything, but eventually she comes around, confessing that she in fact did have a family that was killed by the Suliban. Archer feels bad, remembering how he aided a few Suliban prisoners escape once. They open a bottle of Risan wine but Keyla doesn't appear to be in the best mood. Upon asking her if something was the matter, Keyla begins talking about the Suliban again, asking Archer if he has ever seen any of them and what he knows about them; she insists on knowing where they come from and where they live. Archer apologizes for not being able to tell her more, however, Keyla doesn't stop prying, acting more agitated, yelling at Archer to tell her more about where they live. This is when Archer realizes that something is not right and that there is more going on here than what meets the eye. When she leaves his place to get a sweater for their walk along the beach, Archer transmits a bioscan of Keyla to the ship. It turns out that she is a Tandaran having undergone plastic surgery to disguise herself. Once Archer discovers her true identity and confronts her, she knocks him out and disappears.
While Malcolm and Trip mange to cut through the ropes to free themselves, leaving the cellar and walking back to the bar and to their rooms in their underwear, Hoshi, who has spent the night with the man she just met, is getting ready, albeit reluctantly, to go back to the ship. She explains that she wished she could spend all day lying in bed with him, but that she has to go. Captain Archer also finally awakens with a headache, realizing that he was out all night after Keyla knocked him unconscious.
On the shuttle flight back to the ship, everyone is rather quiet and not nearly as talkative as they were on their way down two days ago. An embarrassed Trip and Malcolm are sitting there in their underwear and a robe, trying not to smell or let anyone know what really happened to them down there, while Archer smiles, stating that he in fact got plenty of rest and went out like a light. Hoshi seems to be the only one with a smirk on her face, even though she also doesn't reveal what really happened, merely stating that she in fact learned several new conjugations. Thinking that Archer had a dull time just reading, Trip suggests that next time they have shore leave, instead of just sitting around and reading books, he should try and get out, look for a little excitement and meet new people. Archer nods and smiles.
- "Captain's personal log, February 18, 2152. It took a while, but we've finally made it to Risa. With any luck, this'll be my last log entry for the next two days."
"I'll bring you a souvenir."
- - Trip to T'Pol, before heading down to Risa
"Malcolm... Bearing 180."
- - Tucker and Reed
"Have you ever been to an alien hospital?"
"Yes. In San Francisco."
- - Travis and T'Pol
"You were willing to follow two strange aliens into a basement!"
"Gorgeous aliens. Don't forget they were gorgeous!"
"They were male!"
"Not at first!"
- - Tucker and Reed arguing after awaking to find that their clothes had been stolen by the two aliens
"We're not in sickbay?"
"We're in your quarters."
"Well then... ernghh... To sickbay!"
- - Phlox and T'Pol, after which Phlox stands and immediately collapses to the floor
- Dey Young previously played Arissa in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "A Simple Investigation", as well as Hannah Bates in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Masterpiece Society".
- The two dogs in this episode, Porthos (Prada) and the Chinese Crested, had actually worked together before as spy partners in the movie Cats & Dogs. This episode was also Prada's last episode. Breezy, who was a stand-in for Prada when they needed a more "spunky" Porthos, took over the role completely from that point on.
- Kellie Waymire makes her last appearance as Elizabeth Cutler in this episode due to her sudden death from a heart condition shortly after.
- This is the only Enterprise episode to be directed by Michael Dorn. He previously directed the DS9 episodes "In the Cards", "Inquisition" and "When It Rains...".
- Dorn's direction of this episode makes him the only Trek regular to be involved with each of the three stories set on Risa. (See also: TNG: "Captain's Holiday", DS9: "Let He Who Is Without Sin...".)
- The Season 1 DVDs contain a deleted scene for this episode. Numbered Scene 1-2, it consists of a one and a half minute exchange between Jonathan Archer, Trip Tucker, T'Pol and Freebus. In it we find out how the crew paid for their shore leave, with Freebus taking an unspecified amount of dilithium to cover "all" costs for the vacationing crew members. We also learn that Risa has numerous diversions for Vulcans.
- The shot of Enterprise flying over Risa was later re-used as Earth in ENT: "Demons".
- Phlox stated in a previous episode, "Dear Doctor", that Denobulans hibernate for six days a year, and in this episode we see him follow through on this necessity (though as he puts it he can "get by" with only two days of hibernation).
- This episode won the 2002 Emmy Award for Outstanding Hairstyling For A Series.
- The door control in Archer's villa is shaped like a horga'hn.
- A script from this episode was sold off on the It's A Wrap! sale and auction on eBay. 
Video and DVD releases
- This was the last volume of Enterprise released on VHS, due to the dwindling home video market, and PHE choosing to focus on the DVD format.
- As part of the ENT Season 1 DVD collection.
Links and references
- Scott Bakula as Captain Jonathan Archer
- John Billingsley as Doctor Phlox
- Jolene Blalock as Subcommander T'Pol
- Dominic Keating as Lieutenant Malcolm Reed
- Anthony Montgomery as Ensign Travis Mayweather
- Linda Park as Ensign Hoshi Sato
- Connor Trinneer as Commander Charles "Trip" Tucker III
- Dey Young as Keyla
- Kellie Waymire as Elizabeth Cutler
- Rudolf Martin as Ravis
- Joseph Will as Michael Rostov
- DonnaMarie Recco as Dee'Ahn (female)
- James Ingersoll as an Risian Man
- Jennifer Williams as an Risian Woman
- Geoff Meed as Dee'Ahn (male)
- Stephen Wozniak as Latia (male)
- Jef Ayres as Haynem
- Solomon Burke, Jr. as Billy
- Dennis Cockrum as Freebus (deleted scene)
- Stacy Fouche as an operations division crewman
- Whitney Hall as a Risian waitress
- Glen Hambly as a operations division ensign (deleted scene)
- John Jurgens as a command division crewman
- Martin Ko as a command division ensign
- Carlos Milano as a Risian waiter
- Marlene Mogavero as an operations division crewman
- Dawn Stern as Latia (female)
- Thelma Tyrell as an operations division crewman
- Prada as Porthos
benzethonium chloride; Galartha; Grat; hibernation; Porthos; preemari; Ravis' language; Regulan bloodworm; Regulus (Regulan system); Risa; Risians; Risian language; Risian mai-tai; Risian sea turtle; Risian wine; Rhylo; shore leave; Skon; Strawberry; Suliban; Suliban Cabal; Tandaran; telescope; The Teachings of Surak; universal translator; Vega Reticuli; Vulcan database
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