Star Trek: Voyager Season 7
SPOILERS TOTAL. You've been warned.
(First watched 2009-07-03) So getting assimilated was part of their plan? And they had a neural supressant to prevent them from being a proper part of the Collective? Hmm. Didn't seem to work very well on Tuvok, though.
Borg Queen seemed a bit stupid destroying those ships with a few unconnected drones. Sure she can't feel their presence, but shouldn't they know where they last were? And couldn't process of elimination (Which drone is moving around that we aren't making move around?) find them out pretty quickly and without so much loss? Interesting, though, that this was used against Janeway, who would prefer to not even bring harm to drones.
(First watched 2009-07-03) So a week after Janeway doesn't want to cause unnecessary drone death, she wants to go hunting to kill a drone to help save Seven. Buh.
So there went the little Borglings, leaving them with only Icheb AKA Borg Wesley Crusher, the prodigy teen who wants to work on the bridge and apply to Starfleet Academy. He's actually a pretty interesting recurring character, though, and well used in this episode. However, things must be different from now on--he no longer has the role of big brother to play.
(First watched 2009-07-04) I'd been wondering what was taking Paris and Torres so long. Those silver doubles got hitched more than a year ago.
(First watched 2009-07-05) So the investigator is also the investigatee... fun stuff. Though I was kind of leaning that way already with all the "hunches" Tuvok had, that the "photonic residue" or whatever bullshit stencil that was in the holodeck looked like him, and that even its pose looked mindmeldy.
(First watched 2009-07-06) Ahh, a strong Doctor episode. We didn't quite get a full picture of the society he ended up with, but it's interesting to see how he reacted to it. They seem to have the worst-case-scenario of universal health care. That is, anyone gets it... if they're valuable enough to the state. Realistically they're probably right that focusing care on "important" individuals helped the whole population of the planet, but it does sound heartless and they went to extremes--like using what would be life-saving medicine for some patients, and giving it to more important people as a daily supplement.
This episode reminds me in some ways of TNG's The Most Toys, with an artificial life form being stolen from Starfleet duty and in the end doing more to harm someone than would've been thought possible of him.
(First watched 2009-07-07) Always a pleasure to see Dwight Schultz, who this time gets to play a very different type of Barclay, as well as the original.
Barclay finding Troi when she's on vacation is a bit What About Bob?
(First watched 2009-07-08) I don't know whether it's because I like the Doctor so much or Jeri Ryan did a better job, but seeing Seven as the Doctor was much more put-up-with-able than that episode where she was acting like a Ferengi and other such people from the Collective.
In any other episode, a line like "You became sexually aroused in my body!" would be really really out of place.
So Tuvok finally has his pon farr problem. And it's much more tactfully taken care of than in the Doctor's daydream from last season. Very sweet of Neelix to try to make a soup for Tuvok when he thinks it's the flu--made without any spices, to be as tasteless as possible, just as Tuvok likes it.
(First watched 2009-07-10) Heh. By now even Kim is getting annoyed at lack of promotion, and thinks back home he might even be up to Lieutenant Commander by now.
I didn't like Seven's convincing him to act near the end, though. It basically went like
Harry: "It turns out their mission wasn't as peaceful as we thought. I can't captain them anymore."
Seven: "Well you're just a bad captain."
Harry: "I'll show you!"
The Icheb B-story was fun. Having been... something less a drone, it's easier to relate to his fumbling of social situations than the way Seven hammers through everything.
(First watched 2009-07-10) Once again the issue of holographic rights comes up, and Janeway wants to take the attitude of "Of course we treat you as equals! as far as it suits us." Her making ultimatums about them needing to shut down or forcibly be shut down and put off their problems until later... that wouldn't go over well if the situations were reversed. Can you imagine someone telling Janeway that she'll need to let the crew die for a few hours, but don't worry because with their advanced tech they can revive them in a few hours?
(First watched 2009-07-10) Sooo we learn too late that Iden is a bit nuts and sees himself as a lead religious figure.
Voyager hiding in a blind spot seemed a bit silly. Like the Millenium Falcon hiding with the trash times a hundred. No Hirogen look out the back window?
(First watched 2009-07-12) Now that was a fun excuse to briefly return to some things of the past, and a preview of a possible future. But how many goddamn times is a pre-Caretaker Janeway going to be asked to trust and assist a member of her future crew?
What a coincidence that nobody seems to be present in multiple timeframes across the ship. They only have access to 1 Janeway, 1 Harry, 1 Tom, etc.
Apart from the bit with future Naomi and Icheb, what part of the experience could cause a temporal prime directive problem for season 7 Janeway, such that Chakotay refuses to talk about it?
I especially liked seeing the early seasons version of the Doctor again, bitter about being ignored and stuck in sickbay.
Tuvok gets to pull a very small scale "dying Spock".
(First watched 2009-07-12) B'Elanna Can't Get Over Her Childhood Issues and Takes It Out on Her Fetus: The Episode
That holographic representation of a baby was uuugly. The holographic godfather was beaming, though.
(First watched 2009-07-12) So this tried to obviously mirror a lot of problems with our justice system. Certain races getting worse punishment. The rich being able to get shorter or no punishment. Questions of mental illness.
(First watched 2009-07-13) At first I was annoyed by them running into yet another Alpha Quadrant thing. Buuut the idea of running into a sect of Klingons who have been heading the opposite direction for a century is pretty neat.
Neelix rooming with Tuvok, and trashing the place with a Klingon woman. Ahahahaha.
(First watched 2009-07-13) Finally being forced to deal with limited resources again. Not a year of hell, but perhaps a week of heck.
Listening to Fantome and his people "speak" their new language was quite cool. Under other circumstances that might've made for a more fleshed-out episode of its own. Though how such a species can be native to the Void is beyond me. There seems to be nowhere there for them to have originated from, so it would mean they've just been bouncing around from ship to ship for long enough for it to become a culture? And for as frequently as ships got sucked in in this episode (and how many it would take to keep pirates supplied for long), it seems there should've been a lot more wreckage in there.
Heeey... Fantome's actor was also Hugh?
(First watched 2009-07-14) Heeey, the ECH is back, but this time it's not a joke. Sooo, what, they've given him command/tactical information... but it's just not available to him when in "regular doctor" mode?
It's not like this is the first time such a thing has happened in sci-fi or Star Trek, but it's still a bit crazy how people's behavior can be almost identical to what it was before, even when they believe they have a completely different backstory. Tuvok was an interesting exception, in that he didn't repress his feelings as he normally would, but still overanalyzed things in a Vulcan way.
Neelix is right: it would've been much more fun if Chakotay had gone disguised as a Talaxian.
(First watched 2009-07-15) The ECH is too good. It's almost too bad they didn't have him around at the beginning and it wasn't the doctor that died but the captain. They'd probably have been home 3 years ago.
I'm surprised Jaffen survived. Once it was clear he wasn't going to turn them in, I thought for sure he'd die helping them so he and Janeway wouldn't have to make a tough decision. But oh, whatever will Janeway's holographic boyfriend think of her having temporarily moved in with another man?
Also, Victor Kiriakis?
(First watched 2009-07-18) Well, there's a moral for you. If at first your emotional experiences cause your Borg implants to fail, don't try, try again.
Was interesting to see Seven making actual advancements before we learned she was playing Barclay and living out an idealized version of her shipboard life.
(First watched 2009-07-18) Good fun to see some silly Q action again. Nice job with the lights and dancers in engineering.
The Q Continuum sure seemed pretty easily willing to let this kid turn into an amoeba or human, given how hard they fought against it with another Q in an early season.
As a fanboy thing it was neat to see other Qs wearing the "judge" uniform Q did in the first and last episodes of The Next Generation.
Shades of other Star Trek episodes, but this was good stuff. It started off fun, with the doctor's exaggerated view of his problems as a hologram as played through slightly altered versions of the Voyager crew. Then when he's got things worked out with his fleshy peers... they run smack into an example of his holographic problems as a publisher tries to take advantage of him. Then we get to a holographic The Measure of a Man.
The scene at the end with the repurposed EMH Mark 1s spreading knowledge of the Doctor's work is strong.
To nitpick on a technical thing... the way Voyager handles its limited contact time with Earth bugs me. Whether it's a day every month or 11 minutes every day, it seems there's always a squeeze to be the one to send mail or have face-to-face time. Now, while real-time conversations have their advantages, it seems the same bandwidth could be used to send a shitload of non-realtime messages. At times in previous episodes they've been all "OH NOES YOUR HOLOGRAM WILL PREVENT US FROM SENDING LETTERS." Well, suck it up and just send the text version that time.
I like how the story's "Tulak" had a beard. Evil Vulcans gotta have a beard.
(First watched 2009-07-22) Why the Prime Directive is a Good Idea: The Episode
(First watched 2009-07-24) Oops We Violated the Prime Directive Anyway: The Episode
Not exactly Darmok, but their learning of the bits of Ventu sign language was interesting.
(First watched 2009-07-26) Aww. Bye-bye Neelix. On the one hand it's so very weird to see a character who's been on the show for every season go away just before the finale. On the other hand, not every character gets their very own final episode.
So... these Talaxians were about as far from their home as the Klingons earlier in the season. How long had they been traveling away from Talax? Or is just another one of those mysterious episodes of amazing speed that the Voyager crew doesn't seem interested about in the slightest. Oh well. I guess after running into so many things from the Alpha Quadrant, we can put up with them running into something actually from the Delta Quadrant.
(First watched 2009-07-26) This episode just goes to show how lucky everyone is that the Doctor is a friendly guy. When motivated, he can drop the entire senior staff. AND provide the means for them to come help afterward, even without people seeing through his own eyes being the wiser.
(First watched 2009-07-27) Man, I really don't like Admiral Janeway's initial motivation. What did she say, something like 22 additional deaths over the next 17 years? Frankly, that sounds pretty damn good; that's less than they lost over the course of the 7 years of the series, so a much lower rate. Hell, the TOS Enterprise lost nearly that many per season.
On top of that, what about all the missions they now didn't do during those years? Back with Season 5's Night I was complaining how Janeway was second-guessing her decision to destroy the Caretaker. They'd helped a shitload of people through those four years. I presume they would've over the next 17 years, too. Now they're boned.
There's also the matter of the future technology. Though they definitely delivered a big blow to the Borg, they still assimilated knowledge of a future Kathryn Janeway. Now they'll probably adapt to the new technology before Starfleet even has a chance to finish developing it.
There's also that, frankly, life seemed pretty good for the survivors in the future. It seems completely awful to just completely change their lives without their knowledge on a gamble that the changed timeline will be something she considers "better".
And hey, at the beginning of this season wasn't Captain Janeway disgusted with how their actions to free some drones was causing the deaths of many drones on the ships the Born Queen was destroying? But this time around nobody seems to give a damn about all the drones on the cubes they blow up, the facility they destroy, or any other that are affected by whatever weird thing Admiral Janeway infected them with.