Star Trek: Lower Decks - In the Cradle of Vexilon Review

Two Captains Log: “Star Trek: Lower Decks” – S4E3 “In the Cradle of Vexilon” Review

Lower Decks is plowing ahead with the recent promotions of the main characters. Captain Freeman is trying to fix an ancient computer, Vexilon, that regulates the environment of an artificial planet. She starts to upgrade the operating system, but it freezes the computer which causes chaos across the planet. Boimler is on the surface with his first command of an away team. But, he’s very anxious about putting them into any harm with what could be a routine switch of parts. Meanwhile, Mariner, Rutherford, and Tendi are given an “ensign level” task to scan many chips to find the faulty one. They suspect it’s a hazing prank, and devise a plan to put the commanding officer through a Deep Space Nine Chula Game as a prank on him. But, he says he did once and it scarred him to prevent him from doing the scans. The team quickly gets rid of all evidence of the prank, including Rutherford quickly going through it. On the planet, Boimler gets some encouragement from T’Lyn that he is a capable commander, and leads the team in the nick of time as Captain Freeman figures out how to repair the computer by hard restarting it. In the end, it is also found out that the other Lower Decks were going through hazing.

And on with the review!


Mr. Daps: “This week I will admit, the music didn’t stand out to me. I noticed sound effects and voices but the music was just there. I don’t have anything positive or negative to say about it.”

Murray: “The music wasn’t all that notable to me. Not necessarily standing out, but not distracting either. For an episode with a lot in it, that is fine.”


Mr. Daps: “The design this week was simply a joy! I loved Vexilon, I loved Corazonia, and I also liked some of the things that they were doing aboard the Cerritos. All in all, this was a very interesting week to watch and I liked how they designed it from multiple approachs. Corazonia was definitely my favorite, though!”

Murray: “Vexilon was a great ancient computer design. It had a combination of being alien and yet having some common tech to it. It made a nice motif to other encounters Star Trek crews have had with planets.”


Mr. Daps: “There were a few things happening this week. I definitely had to slow down and catch up a couple of times. I almost wish the episode had been longer to spend a little more time on each story arc that was happening. I enjoyed each of the stories that were being told and wanted a little bit more of them. I do like seeing how the former ensigns are settling into their new roles after their recent promotions. I liked how Boimler, in particular, was handled and grew through the episode. I’m looking forward to seeing where everything goes.”

Murray: “There were a lot of plots happening in this episode. It was a little hard to have it all together. Captain Freeman’s struggle suffered in the episode, and there could have been a lot more with her. I also wanted more with the game that Rutherford went through, though the point was that he could do it quickly. It wasn’t a terrible storyline for all, but I wish it had been simplified down to two.”

Hit or Miss?

Mr. Daps: “I thought this week’s episode was a hit for me. I don’t think it was the best episode we’ve seen in Star Trek: Lower Decks, but it also wasnt bad. I liked the different storylines that were happening, but definitely wanted more from each of them. I like where they are taking the characters from a big picture standpoint and I am finding myself really hoping this show lasts a long time so that we can continue to see their careers progress. I’m definitely looking forward to the next episode!”

Murray: “As much as I enjoyed the episode, it’s a miss for me. I loved the reference to both the Betazoid gift box and the Chula Game, but some of that suffered in a dense episode. Like I said about the storylines, it felt like things were rushed and I wanted to stay present in some situations more. But, it doesn’t mean it was a terrible episode. It’s that wish that it were longer!”

This week’s thumbnail was created by one of Daps Magic’s lower decks crewmembers. A hearty thank you to them for pinch hitting while Murray gets married today! Join us in wishing Murray a very happy marriage and very happy life with Alicia!