Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies” features some new Betazoid diplomats—or are they? We’ve got party-time shenanigans, secret agents, and getting better at your job through recreation and caring for your mental health. Pour yourself a yard of something glowing and green and let’s jump into my review of Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies.”
Betazoid Party Queens
When the primary example we have a Betazoid in the Star Trek universe is the reserved and composed, Deanna Troi, we can easily forget that perhaps more Betazoids might be more like her mother Lwaxana instead. Our Betazoid diplomats/Betazoid Intelligence Officers are played by a fantastic group of funny ladies as well. Katrot is voiced by Janelle James, who you might know best as Principal Ava Coleman in Abbott Elementary. Cathiw is played by a prolific actress of both the screen and recording booth, Wendie Malick. Wendie recently has appeared in Shrinking and How I Met Your Father, but you might know her best as Chicha from The Emperor’s New Groove. She’ll always be Principal Folsom from Fillmore! to me. Finally, Dolorex is voiced by Rachel Dratch, who appeared in multiple animated and live-action comedies, including Parks and Recreation, Harley Quinn, and of course, Saturday Night Live.
I love watching all of these ladies play off of one another. Individually all of these ladies are hilarious enough, but team them up, and we’ve got a middle-aged team of Charlie’s Angels-style empaths. It’s a new insight into Betazoid culture that we’ve not seen before and I’m here for it. Now, if we can get this in live action, that would be even better. I hope we’ve not seen the last of Betazed’s Angels.
Stress Management, Self-Care, and Mental Health
Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies” continues the throughline of positive mental health and open communication that we’ve seen all season. Lines like, “Hey pal, ease up. That’s my friend you’re calling an idiot,” are so sweet and sincere. I also love the continual showing of positive masculinity with Rutherford and Boimler.
The security team is another example of positive mental health and stress management. We often forget that play can be productive. Blowing off steam through games, art, poetry, or whatever you like to reduce stress can really help improve mental and emotional health. Doing these things with your coworkers can be a great team-bonding activity as well.
The surprise storyline with T’Lyn coming to value herself on her own terms rather than by those of her former crew. The way she summarizes it is great—“By the transitive property, I too must be Vulcan as a mother(bleep)er.” “Yeah, logic that, b*tch!” These themes really make Lower Decks stand out as one of the most positive mental health shows on television today. More of this, please, and thank you.
Overall, Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies” is another solid entry into season four of the series. Strong writing, storytelling, and wonderful performances continue to make Star Trek: Lower Decks one of the most consistently well-written and produced shows on television. Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies” additionally brings more madcap background humor to Lower Decks than we’ve seen in a while. It also highlights some interesting character traits in our crew.
Mariner gets louder and more party girl in her heightened emotional state. Rutherford yells about how much he loves everything and everyone. Tendi becomes even more aggressively friendly, which I didn’t know was possible. There’s also a sweet nod when Rutherford says, “Hey, don’t be mean to Tendi!” and then they all chase T’Lyn. I still ship the heck of out Rutherford and Tendi, so while it might have just been said in passing, it still warmed my heart.
Additionally, any time they have Dr. T’Ana really lean into the idea that she’s actually just a really big cat makes me very happy. I love anything that shows people just being honest and sincere about their feelings, and Lower Decks consistently knocks it out of the park in this manner. I’m so eager to watch the rest of the season.
What did you think of Star Trek: Lower Decks 4×05 “Empathological Fallacies”? Leave me a comment and let’s talk Trek.