The Cynics Corner

Star Trek: Voyager

"The Disease"

by David E. Sluss

27 February 1999

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: Garbage. A not-particularly-interesting idea that might have been saved by acting, had any actors been cast in the lead roles.


WELFARE RECIPIENTS OF THE WEEK: Big payout from Star Trek's Welfare Program this week, as Garrett Wang, possibly the worst actor in Star Trek history, manages to get paid for a performance that is bad even by his standards. He can't even ham it up competently; his speech about love in Janeway's ready room is downright painful to watch. Other welfare recipients include the Alien Chick, whose performance was almost as bad as Wang's, and poor, wooden Charles Rocket, still doing penance after all these years for that ill-considered obscenity.

LAX SECURITY OF THE WEEK: How could Kim steal a shuttlecraft without being noticed immediately? How could he even think he could get away with his little joyride to the nebula? Probably because he knows how inept Starfleet security protocols and personnel are.

RETROCONTINUITY OF THE WEEK: Well, this "sexual prime directive" is a new one. It's actually sort of a reasonable idea, but unfortunately there's never been any evidence in the past that such a regulation exists, and plenty of apparent violators. Even if you rationalize away all of Kirk's flings, by saying the regulation is post-Kirk (maybe even because of Kirk), there are plenty of New Trek examples of Starfleet officers having un-sanctioned interspecies sex, with no mention of regulations, such as Riker and the female leader in Next Generation's "Angel One" or Dax and Whatsisname in Deep Space Nine's "Meridian."

VOYAGER CLICHE OF THE WEEK: I think the set is now complete; every senior officer has now received the patented Janeway "I counted on you and you let me down" speech.

PREVARICATOR OF THE WEEK: Janeway greases Rocket's character with crapola about how Voyager's trip could last generations. Hello? Isn't Voyager only about 30 years from home now? Three years ago, when Voyager was 70 years away, they would have shown some interest in generational vessels, but now, even without any more big jumps, they should make it home in one generation.

PREVARICATOR OF THE WEEK RUNNER-UP: Seven's closing speech to Kim about how she was wrong about love, and how Kim's experience showed her that love can be a source of strength, is and example of either Seven lying to make Kim feel better (unlikely, given her personality) or of appallingly stupid writing. Show me where Kim demonstrated any strength in this episode, and more particularly, where Seven could have possibly seen any strength in Kim.

CONTRIVANCE OF THE WEEK: So the generational ship is a one-for-all and all-for-one deal, right? So why does each and every segment of the ship have its own engines?

Previous: "Dark Frontier"
Next: "Course: Oblivion"
NEXT WEEK: What, another disease?



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This review is copyright 1999 David E. Sluss
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