Precious Cargo

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"Precious Cargo"
Star Trek: Enterprise episode
Episode no. Season 2
Episode 11
Directed by David Livingston
Teleplay by David A. Goodman
Story by
Featured music Paul Baillargeon
Cinematography by Marvin V. Rush
Production code 211
Original air date December 11, 2002 (2002-12-11)
Guest actors
Episode chronology
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"Vanishing Point"
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"The Catwalk"

"Precious Cargo" is the thirty-seventh episode (production #211) of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: Enterprise airing on the UPN network. It is the eleventh episode of the series' second season.

Set in the 22nd century, the series follows the adventures of the first Starfleet starship Enterprise, registration NX-01. In this episode, the Enterprise answers an alien distress call and Commander Tucker (Connor Trinneer) is kidnapped and then escapes with a spoiled and beautiful alien princess (Padma Lakshmi).


Chief Engineer Trip Tucker (Connor Trinneer) of the starship Enterprise is in his quarters playing his harmonica in the window when he notices that the ship had dropped out of warp. Captain Archer (Scott Bakula) hails him through the comm and offers him a task. Goff (Scott Klace), the captain of a Retellian cargo vessel, docks and asks Archer for help; a passenger-carrying stasis pod is malfunctioning. Archer offers Trip's services to help repair it while also extending an offer of Enterprise hospitality to both the captain and his brother, Plinn (Leland Crooke).

When Tucker enters the cargo hold inside Goff's ship, he clears the frost covering the stasis canopy, and sees a beautiful female alien (Padma Lakshmi). Goff tells him that she is a passenger traveling home from a planet where she was studying medicine. He explains that because his ship can't travel over warp 3, she has to be kept in stasis because there is not enough food to support them all. Soon after Tucker starts working on the stasis pod, it begins to fail. Fearing that the occupant will suffocate, he releases her. Tucker is knocked unconscious by Goff, who then flees from the faster Enterprise by disabling her engines and ionizing its warp trail; Plinn is left behind.

The female passenger, Kaitaama, is initially hostile. However, Trip uses the translator Ensign Sato (Linda Park) left with him, and he learns she is a high-ranking soon-to-be First Monarch and she is a prisoner for ransom. Tucker has a plan for escape, and though she believes that her status will keep her safe, she joins Tucker in a one-man escape pod. Tucker soon finds a system with a habitable world, a journey of one day in the cramped pod. Meanwhile Captain Archer and Sub-commander T'Pol (Jolene Blalock) use a ruse similar to "good cop/bad cop" to persuade Plinn to tell them how to locate Goff's ship. The plan works and Plinn reveals the warp core's signature frequency.

After finding an island on the planet, Tucker and Kaitaama soon set up camp in a swamp, and their mutual antipathy eventually gives way to their burgeoning sexual tension. But Goff soon locates them using the homing beacon on the escape pod. Tucker and Goff fight until the latter is subdued by Kaitaama, just as the Enterprise rescue team also arrives. Kaitaama is later collected by a battle cruiser from her home world of Krios Prime, leaving an invitation for Tucker to visit her in the future when she is in power.

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