Star Trek: Voyager Season 3
SPOILERS TOTAL. You've been warned.
(First watched 2007-01-05) From her deathpoint with near-total memory loss, Kes keeps getting sent earlier in time, and must learn things backward and try to make progress with earlier and earlier forms of the crew. Really a great episode. It only falls apart a bit at the end, with her regressing to a point at least as far back as conception before somehow the treatment in the series' present catches up. Then the explanation that she's regained her memories so she can go on with her life as normal... but she's really the remnant of a future Kes. Why only fully regain the memories up to this point? Reconnecting with the physical memories in the brain in that time period's version of Kes?
(First watched 2007-01-06) Two really good episodes in a row? Is this Voyager? The Doctor is consistently the best thing about the series, so this episode focused on him was enjoyable. He tries to simulate family life on the holodeck; at first with a too-perfect family, and then with a more randomized family that parodies usual family troubles with a Star Trek twist: not only is his son rebelling and taking on "undesirable" traits due to his friends, but they're Klingons and he wants to be a warrior. His reactions to his daughter's accident are quite sad, and grow him as a character. The B-story with the sub-space eddies is almost pointless, except that it gives the Doctor a chance to push his own story forward by getting pissy with Paris.
(First watched 2007-01-07) This one is pretty good, too, but has a bit too much of the Voyager Crap. Interesting to have a big chunk of the episode not from Voyager's point of view. The scientists' lost battle was nice; too often on Star Trek we see things turn out perfectly. However, the very theory being argued over, while a cool idea... well, Voyager may be 70,000 light years from home, but they just CAN'T seem to avoid running into direct connections to the Alpha Quadrant and more specifically Earth, so points are lost. Having the Holodeck speculate on likely evolutions of creatures through millions of years in the blink of an eye with few guidelines given: crap. Not quite as crap as season 2's Threshold's take on evolution, but still crap.
(First watched 2007-01-09) Standard non-crap, non-awesome.
(First watched 2007-01-08) Started off pretty interesting, with the crew treating the mysterious holoprogram like a group of gamers might a very freeform adventure game. However, it then became a standard "stuck in a dangerous program with the safeties off" affair.
(First watched 2007-01-10) Busy episode. As only part 1 it's hard to come to much judgment yet. I will take this as a good opportunity to bitch at Janeway's flip-floppiness and the way she tosses aside any pretense of noninterference when it's inconvenient for her. A season ago or so it was proposed to ally with some Kazon to make their trip through Kazon space more survivable. That didn't go so well, and she concluded it was a bad idea in the first place. But now SHE'S the one all gung-ho about allying with the frickin' BORG for the same reason? Playing a part in the outcome of a war between the Borg and Species 8472 could have vast consequences for the galaxy, but she's deciding it based on the fact that she doesn't want to turn around and disappoint her crew?
Their plan to hide the special data from the Borg seems flawed, though. Even if they hide away the Doctor's specific work, if the Borg assimilated Voyager they should easily enough be able to figure out how Voyager FOUND their solution and know how to activate (even in a way assimilate?) an EMH to get working on it.
Species 8472 is pretty cool, though. I enjoy that though they're a Borg opponent, they're designed with certain similarities. As the Borg assimilate a person or ship, 8472 slowly eats and replaces a person or ship. The Borg are a mix of technology and biology with their ships looking more technological, while 8472's ships appear almost fully biological.