13. Malcolm Reed: A Character Study

In episode thirteen, of THE EXPANSE – A STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE PODCAST, Kris Hill and Kyle West take their first close look at a member of the NX-01 crew: Dominic Keating’s Malcolm Reed.

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13. Malcolm Reed: A Character Study

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What is in Episode 13 – Malcolm Reed: A Character Study?

English, But Different

At first, our co-hosts discuss their first impressions of Lieutenant Reed, and how he was the first English character to be a part of a main Star Trek cast since Deep Space Nine’s Dr Julian Bashir.

Reed’s job title is discussed, and how it differed to that of characters who had filled his particular job role, in previous Trek shows.

Fan Clubs

We find out that whilst Reed was a personal favourite of Kyle’s, Kris’ heart belonged to Charles “Trip” Tucker III.

Kyle reveals that, back in 2001, he created an appreciation thread for Malcolm Reed, on TrekBBS.com, following the release of the first season episode, “Terra Nova”.

The thread blew up! Kyle soon found himself being the founder of a group of mostly mature ladies who were fawning over Dominic Keating and Malcolm Reed, each and every week.

It was a lot for teenage Kyle to handle!

Reed and the Ladies

We hear both host’s thoughts on Reed’s continuing search for love or just the touch of a woman. As Kyle points out, Reed was actually far more successful with the ladies than most remember, from Vissian’s to Andorian’s.

It wasn’t just Reed’s own success with the opposite sex that caught Kyle and Kris’ attention, however, as they discuss Reed’s regular support of Trip during his own pursuits of love.

Kyle reveals he found parts of their friendship to be incredibly entertaining, including Reed’s cheeky grin at Trip being caught in his underwear with an alien princess.

Don’t forget them discussing the intimacy of Vulcan neuro-pressure whilst Trip is trying to have his dinner!

Best Friends

Kris tells how “Shuttlepod One” warmed him up to Reed, and that he enjoyed the interplay between Reed and Trip during what both characters thought was their final days of life.

This episode, as stated on previous podcasts, is a personal favourite of Kyle, who says that it is amongst his favourite Star Trek episodes of all time.

Trip and Reed were the only two characters to enjoy what could be described as a farewell scene with each other, in Enterprise’s final episode, “These are the Voyages”.

Kyle and Kris discuss the significance of this, and what it meant to the friendship as a whole.

Shady Business

A lot of time is spent discussing the Season 4 revelation that Malcolm Reed was a former Section 31 agent.

As Enterprise had been Kris’ first Star Trek show, after growing up on The Original Series, this was his first encounter with the concept of Section 31.

Kris has now seen all of DS9, where Section 31 was first introduced to the audience. He admits that he preferred their portrayal on that show, as opposed to Enterprise.

Kyle hates that the reveal happened so late in the show’s lifetime, causing it to be often forgotten about when remembering Malcolm Reed’s journey on the television series.

Kyle wishes it had been introduced earlier, especially given fans had long suspected such a twist was going to be revealed.

We find out that Kris feels Malcolm’s work with Section 31 was over, following the end of the Terra Prime two-parter.

Still, Kyle isn’t so sure, and regrets that it is another plot point fans have missed out on seeing develop, following the cancellation of the show.

Where Did Malcolm Reed End Up?

Following up on the discussion that was had in their episode covering the series finale, “These are the Voyages”, Kris and Kyle discussed where they thought Reed would end up.

Kris settles on the idea that Reed commanded his own ship, following the decommissioning of the NX-01 Enterprise, in 2161.

That idea doesn’t sit so well with Kyle!

Kyle believes that Reed was less of a leader, and more of a follower who would sacrifice his life for a leader, so wouldn’t be suited to commanding his own vessel.

His own headcanon is that Reed took up a Head of Security role at Starfleet Command, following the founding of the United Federation of Planets.

The Man Behind the Phaser

Kyle is full of praise for Dominic Keating, who he says played Reed perfectly.

He admired the awkwardness Keating inserted into the character in the early days, as well as the bravery, and quick wit.

Kyle also discusses an aspect of Keating’s work on the show that he feels doesn’t get praised often enough: his comedy, and comic timing.

Like Kyle, Kris was more than impressed with Keating’s work on Enterprise.

Both men admire how Keating managed to turn Reed into a fan favourite who would eventually break into the “troika” that headed-up the show, in Archer, T’Pol and Trip.

Useful Links

Episode Credits

Hosts: Kris Hill & Kyle West
Editor: Kyle West

Small Print

Music used in this podcast is licenced by Holosuite Media through Epidemic Sound. The theme music is “Heroics” by Boil The Ocean. Other music used includes “Red Red Shoes” by Czar Donic, and “Prescient” by Howard Harper-Barnes.

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