Galaxy Quest Review Part 2: The Show Goes OnThe movie isn't perfect, but it's fun, and definitely better than The Orville Season Three...
Last time, we began our review of Galaxy Quest, a true parody of Star Trek. In the previous review, we’d ended with Jason Nesmith encountering a group of aliens which had mistaken the campy television show called Galaxy Quest for a record of Earth’s history, and therefore, had modeled their technology after the tv show. The cast found it impossible to explain to the aliens that they were actors and must now find a way to stop Sarris, the alien threatening to wipe out this race which has asked for their help called the Thermians.
Jason and the rest of the cast are led to the bridge to negotiate with Sarris, who, of course, does not wish to surrender at all. He demands that the crew give him the Omega-13, a device that was briefly referred to in the final episode, and none of the actors have any idea what the device does. Jason attempts to trick Sarris by telling him he intends to give him the device but really plans on firing at the alien’s ship, but because Gwen, the actress who played one of his staff on the show, has no idea how to really operate the computer, Sarris hears the entire plan. He begins firing on the ship, so Tommy, the actor who played the pilot on the show, tries to fly away, despite having no real knowledge of how to navigate the ship.
They fly into a conveniently placed minefield in space which further damages the vessel. Sarris, assuming the ship will be too damaged to continue flying, doesn’t chase after them. By some miracle, the ship survives the minefield, but their energy source, called a Beryllium Sphere, is damaged beyond repair. So, they have to find a new one. They eventually do, and the ship limps to the planet which contains the Beryllium, where the crew is forced to pick up another sphere at an abandoned mind.
While on the planet, they encounter some child-like aliens with fangs. Jason is left behind while the rest of the crew barely manages to escape with the sphere. Once back aboard the ship, the crew tries to rescue Jason using a device that is similar to the transporter on Star Trek. Jason does not wish to take this particular mode of transportation as it involves being diced into a bunch of cubes in the hopes of being reassembled correctly back on the ship, but once the little aliens offer him to a giant rock monster, the transporter sounds like a fine idea. Jason is taken back to the ship in one piece, but just when it looks like all is well, Sarris storms into the room. He apparently got tired of waiting.
He takes Jason to Mathesar, the aliens’ leader, and after discovering the truth about the Galaxy Quest television series, forces Jason to explain to the alien that he had lied. To the writers’ credit, they have Sarris help Jason explain the concept since the actors had previously been unable to articulate the concept of lying to these naive aliens. Once Jason’s humiliation and Mathesar’s despair are complete, Sarris orders that the ship be programmed to self-destruct, but not before all the Thermians are slowly suffocated in their sleeping quarters. As for the actors, Sarris orders that they be jettisoned into space.
In the next scene, there is a clever moment between Jason Nesmith, played by Tim Allen, and Alexander Dane, played by Alan Rickman. The actors do a clever job communicating through facial expressions and references to previous episodes that they are going to fake a fight. The hostile aliens, watching the two men bicker, let their guard down long enough for the two men to get the jump on them, and Jason and Alexander overpower their captors.
Jason tells the rest of the crew to save the suffocating aliens while he and Gwen go and turn off the self-destruct sequence. Here, Jason calls a fan, who he previously mistreated, to ask for help because this particular fan had studied the layout of the ship. Jason and the fan patch things up, and the fan leads them through a series of absurd obstacles to get them to the self-destruct button. The aliens had no real understanding of the show, so they included every absurd element on the ship. After going through a terrifying hall filled with random metal blocks which could’ve crushed Jason and Gwen, Gwen, played by Sigourney Weaver, screams, “Whoever wrote this episode should die!”
Gwen and Jason shut off the self-destruct device. As for the rest of the crew, Alexander and another alien named Quellek, save the rest of the Thermians, but Quellek is shot shortly afterward, and Alan Rickman, who played Alexander, is able to deliver the next line perfectly. He takes the catchphrase he’d been forced to say for years and delivers it with conviction which puts a smile on Quellek’s face as he passes.
Allan Rickman is a sorely missed actor.
As for Sarris, he returns to his ship, unaware that the bumbling actors and the Thermians have retaken their vessel. Once he discovers this, he chases after the ship, but Tommy leads them back into the minefield, and this time Jason has Tommy fly exceptionally close to the mines, and since they’re magnetic, the mines follow the vessel. They fly straight toward Sarris’s ship, and at the last moment, dodge the oncoming vessel, sending all the mines crashing into Sarris. However, Sarris is not done. He disguises himself as one of the crew and attempts to shoot everyone on the bridge. He kills a good number of the cast, but Jason remembers the Omega-13 device and activates it. It turns out the device rewinds time, giving Jason a second chance to stop Sarris before he begins firing on the crew.
All seems well, and the actors return to earth in a rather clunky fashion, crashing into one of their own conventions. But Sarris is still not done. He stumbles onto the stage and tries to shoot Jason, but Jason shoots Sarris first, which causes the stunned audience to burst into applause, having no idea what’s really going on. The movie ends with Galaxy Quest beginning a new season.
The movie isn’t perfect, but it’s fun. Much better than The Orville Season Three, which was so obsessed with its messaging, that ninety percent of the time, it forgot to tell a coherent story. I’d recommend Galaxy Quest to any Star Trek fan who is in the mood to laugh.