The Cynics Corner

Star Trek: Voyager


by David E. Sluss

13 February 1999

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: Dull and derivative, though well-acted.


RECYCLING OF THE WEEK: The writers threw quite a few old episodes into the pot this week, with big helpings of "Persistence of Vision," an oft-forgotten episode from Voyager's oft-forgotten second season, a smidgen of last season's "One," and a dash of some half-baked hybrid of the original series' "The Immunity Syndrome" and "The Doomsday Machine." The result is an episode with nothing outrageously bad, but nothing especially fresh or interesting either. At least the writers had the sense to get the Gilligan thing out of the way quickly, by way of Janeway's debunking of the "wormhole" in her log fairly early on.

LITERATURE REFERENCE OF THE WEEK: Moby Dick, what else? Sometimes I think that's the only book the Star Trek staff has ever read the Cliffs Notes for....

SURPRISE OF THE WEEK: Or of the season perhaps, is the way Naomi Wildman still fails to annoy me. I find her to be well-acted and well-characterized, better than some of the principals, in fact. This week, for instance, her lack of interest in seeing Earth is absolutely reasonable, and reflects some thought going into the character. Unfortunately, we're also starting to get glimpses of a Wesley Syndrome with this kid piloting a shuttle and keeping Kim from bringing down Seven's force field. The staff should remember that, despite her appearance, Naomi is only three years old. They should also remember that she has a mother...

STAR TREK TREND OF THE WEEK: In what is possibly a sweeps gimmick of some sort, both this episode and Deep Space Nine's "Field of Fire" feature women with BFG's (big f^&#ing guns). This is the second time for Seven this season. I predicted in my review for "Night" that we would see a lot of this, but we haven't. Plenty of episodes left, I guess.

QUESTIONABLE DIRECTION OF THE WEEK: The inexplicable super-slo-mo used for Seven's BFG attack on the engineering staff, which only served to slow down an already-slow episode. I'd call it self-indulgent, if it weren't so inept.

CONTINUITY OF THE WEEK: The deuterium shortage, first mentioned in last year's awful "Demon" and referenced earlier this season, was brought up again, and again I say to hell with continuity; the idea that deuterium is hard to find is ridiculous, and should be dumped into the continuity ashcan, along with Warp 10 and Janeway's Gothic Holonovel.

LAX COMPUTER SECURITY OF THE WEEK: Access to the Captain's Log is restricted, but all one has to do to read it is move some little gizmo around? And Seven starts to rebel, but no one even tries to revoke her computer access, thus allowing Seven to raise force fields and use the transporter? Come on. Even if the crew is that dumb, the creature could have made them revoke her access.

RESET BUTTON OF THE WEEK: The hull of Voyager was partially digested ("demolecularized" -- <snicker>), and yet there seems to be no problem with it after they escape from the creature. I suppose it just remolecularized itself...

Previous: "Gravity"
Next: "Dark Frontier"
NEXT WEEK: Another Star Trek Event [TM] sweeps onto your screen.



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