‘Star Trek: Lower Decks’ Season 2, Episode 4 Easter Eggs

The fourth episode of “Star Trek: Lower Decks'” sophomore season dropped on September 2, and it was one other Easter egg-filled episode. “Mugato, Gumato” adopted the crew of the Cerritos as they tracked down a unfastened Mugato, an ape-like alien creature, on Frylon IV. The episode introduced again a “Star Trek: The Original Series” alien and aesthetic.

Though the episode was full of intelligent references to the “Star Trek” canon, the writers did not depend on these references as a lot as they’ve in earlier episodes. “Mugato, Gumato” wasn’t a direct parody of the TOS episode it referenced, nor was the plot fully reliant on its Easter eggs. Like the earlier episode, “We’ll Always Have Tom Paris,” episode 4 was an instance of how the writers can craft new tales whereas incorporating canon.

Here’s a breakdown of the foremost Easter eggs in “Mugato, Gumato.”

Mugatos… Or Gumato? Mugutu?

The episode’s major storyline concerned the hunt for the reported Mugato, led by Lieutenant Shaxs. The episode introduced again the horror film aesthetic that labored so effectively for traditional TOS episodes like “The Devil within the Dark.”

“Mugato, Gumato” started with two Denobulan researchers listening to unusual noises within the woods round them. The suspense constructed for a bit earlier than a Mugato burst out of the underbrush, roaring loudly. There have been a number of moments of suspense-building like this and a number of jump-scares all through the episode, making it clear that the writers have been making a tribute to the horror-themed episodes peppered all through “The Original Series.”

The writers additionally acquired super-meta all through the episode by referencing the myriad pronunciations of Mugato. As Heavy beforehand reported, the identify of the ape-like creatures modified from the script to manufacturing due to DeForest Kelley’s incapacity to pronounce the phrase Gumato. However, the actors nonetheless mispronounced the identify of the creatures, resulting in the identify “Mugutu.” Throughout the episode, characters pronounced the identify of those creatures in numerous, generally wildly inaccurate methods. Notably, Shaxs pronounced the identify in another way almost each time he spoke of them.

The writers additionally integrated a jab on the incongruencies inside the Trek canon, utilizing the Mugato for instance. When discussing the variations on the identify of the species, Boimler stated, “Isn’t that neat and inconsistent?”

“Mugato, Gumato” additionally expanded upon the Mugato, including some context to the creatures that have been portrayed as vicious monsters in “A Private Little War.” Though the Mugatos did viciously assault the humanoids they encountered, they have been now not a menace as soon as they have been now not threatened. It appears that they have been solely violent when defending their herd-mates and their territory. This might be one other obscure reference to “The Devil within the Dark” because it was revealed that the Horta was solely attacking the miners as a result of the miners have been stealing and killing their offspring.

An fascinating aspect be aware: the identical actor who performed the Horta in “The Devil within the Dark” additionally performed the Mugato in “A Private Little War.”

The episode additionally launched a brand new approach to cope with Mugato poisoning. Mugato fangs include a lethal neurotoxin that’s deadly to humanoids inside hours of an infection. When Captain Kirk was bit by a Mugato, he was saved by an indigenous alien shaman who carried out a ritual and utilized native vegetation to the wound.

In “Mugato, Gumato,” Shaxs was bit by a Mugato. Mariner attended to his wound by sucking out the poison, very like is really helpful for snake bites. It’s an affordable assumption that within the century since Kirk’s time, new analysis has offered totally different, non-indigenous strategies for coping with Mugato bites.

The Ferengi

The massive reveal of the episode’s major storyline was {that a} group of Ferengi “businessmen,” as they insisted they have been, had arrange an unlawful Mugato commerce operation on Frylon IV. They have been capturing Mugatos and slaughtering them for his or her pelts and horns. When the Cerritos away workforce confronted the Ferengi, a battle ensued.

These Ferengi weren’t just like the Ferengi followers of “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” are used to seeing, although. These Ferengi have been caricatures of capitalist villains, ruthless and malevolent, but additionally type of silly. They have been so pushed by revenue that they did not care how they made it, even when it meant slaughtering an alien species.

The Ferengis of “Mugato, Gumato” will in all probability be acquainted to followers of the early episodes of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” These Ferengis have been very like the grasping little goblins launched for the primary time within the episode “The Last Outpost.”

In reality, Mariner even says that the Ferengi are “some creepy throwback, ‘Last Outpost’ fashion Ferengi.” The writers’ option to have a personality reference an episode identify is… fascinating. It’s potential that the incident was talked about as “The Last Outpost Incident” in Starfleet studies. However, it appears a bit too meta to have a personality referencing an episode identify.

Regardless, Mariner’s evaluation is right. She goes on to ask whether or not these Ferengi have “ever heard of Quark.” The remark serves as a direct comparability between the primitive, silly, avarice-driven Ferengi of TNG and the intelligent, conniving, tremendous capitalist DS9 Ferengi.

Mariner additionally brings up the long-debated contradiction of the Ferengi as a species. In a universe the place nearly something individuals need could be replicated, why do the Ferengi insist on destroying pure sources to promote them for revenue? Instead of capturing and killing precise Mugatos, they may simply replicate Mugato pelts and horns.

Though Mariner’s level is truthful, it highlights the whole cause the Ferengi exist within the “Star Trek” canon — to reveal the lasting energy of shady capitalism. The existence of the Ferengi and their prospects acknowledges that even in a utopian future, there’ll all the time be individuals who need real, not replicated, merchandise and sources whatever the hurt it takes to get them. And there’ll all the time be greed-driven people who do not thoughts profiting off of hurt.

However, of their episode, the “Lower Decks” writers selected to think about a unique final result for each the Ferengi and the Mugato. Boimler and Rutherford offered the Ferengi on the thought of making a nature protect for the Mugato and making it right into a type of theme park, to which they may cost admission. The profit-driven Ferengi could not ignore the truth that this was a way more sustainable stream of revenue. The workforce behind “Lower Decks” appears to be driving house the purpose that there are all the time much less dangerous options, even when revenue is the one objective.

Starfleet Intelligence and Section 31

The secondary storyline of “Mugato, Gumato” concerned the rumor that Mariner was really a undercover agent of the Starfleet black ops group Section 31. The bartender within the mess corridor instructed Boimler and Rutherford that he’d heard Mariner was a sleeper soldier for Starfleet black ops, positioned on the Cerritos.

Rutherford commented that he could not imagine Starfleet would embed a Section 31 operative on considered one of their very own ships. Boimler agreed however talked about that Starfleet Intelligence, a separate company from Section 31, typically put intelligence operatives on their very own ships. He identified that Tuvok additionally went deep cowl to infiltrate a Starfleet ship that had gone Maquis and that there have been a number of undercover operatives on Starfleet vessels throughout the Dominion War. Boimler’s feedback have been references to the occasions portrayed within the pilot episode of “Star Trek: Voyager” and within the fifth by means of seventh seasons of “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.”

There have been so many extra Section 31 references to be made, however the writers determined to skip them on this episode, choosing extra authentic storyline and fewer Easter eggs. They did, nonetheless, reveal that Mariner had began the rumor herself so that folks would preserve their distance.

Other Random Easter Eggs

Like all the opposite episodes of “Lower Decks,” “Mugato Gumato” was peppered with one-off references to the Trek canon. In this episode, Boimler, Rutherford, and Mariner did some extremely aggressive Anbo-jyutsu sparring. TNG followers know that Anbo-jyutsu is a martial artwork Commander William Riker and his father practiced collectively.

Another fast martial arts reference occurred throughout one other secondary storyline, which concerned Tendi monitoring down officers who’d skipped their physicals. Tendi snuck into the holodeck as Ensign Jet and Lieutenant Kayshon ready to spar with one another. They have been carrying conventional martial arts gis, as have been the scholars sitting in a circle round them.

Though Jet and Kayshon weren’t carrying headpieces, the remainder of the scholars have been. This means that they have been coaching Aikido, as Tasha Yar did within the TNG episode “Code of Honor.” However, it is also a reference to Lieutenant Worf’s Mok’bara lessons on the Enterprise-D.

The Denobulans at first of the episode chatted about consuming raktajino, a Klingon drink just like espresso. Raktajino was a favourite beverage of Major Kira Nerys, Captain Benjamin Sisko, and Jadzia, however not Ezri, Dax. The Denobulans agreed that human espresso was a lot weaker and fewer efficient than raktajino.

The alien who conned Captain Freeman, and was revealed to be working a con all through the Quadrant, seemed to be a Benzite. The Benzites first appeared in season considered one of TNG and made a number of appearances in DS9 and Enterprise. However, they don’t seem to be a very distinguished Trek species.

Another uncommon alien look was a Kzinti onboard the Cerritos. The Kzinti first appeared in “Star Trek: The Animated Series.” They have been an aggressive species with a cat-like look. The Kzinti fought a number of wars with humankind, however misplaced all of them. Eventually, people stripped them of all their army property. According to Memory Alpha, a non-canon “Star Trek” e-book established that the Kzinti had shared ancestry with the Caitians, one other cat-like species that had significantly better relations with people. The look of a Kzinti on the Cerritos might point out that the “Lower Decks” writers plan to canonize the Kzinti-Caitian connection.

Lastly, on Frylon IV, Boimler and Rutherford encountered a Tellarite biologist who had a reasonably distinct Steve Irwin vibe.

“Mugato, Gumato” was much less heavy-handed with the Easter eggs than earlier episodes of the show’s second season. However, it was heavy on good comedic storytelling.

The subsequent episode of “Lower Decks” drops on September 9 at midnight Pacific Time/3 am Eastern Time. Check again for previews of episode 5 and a full breakdown of the episode’s Easter eggs after it airs.

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