Date: September 8, 2020
Season 1, Episodes 2 and 3
Musical Accompaniment: Disney piano music
Interstellar News: Four loads of laundry complete and one hell of an emotionally draining day, ugh.
“Parallax” in TL;DR: Janeway is trying to best manage the crew and Chakotay advocates for some of the Maquis to be promoted. They run into a spatial distortion and notice a ship being pulled into the singularity so they try to help. Nothing works so they try to visit another planet for help when they realize they haven’t moved and they are the ones stuck in the singularity and it was a reflection of their ship… insert some technobabble about temporal mechanics here. Janeway and Torres geek out over figuring out a way to bust a hole and totally bond, even finishing each other’s sentences, and also have to make the hard choice to figure out which Voyager to get back on because one isn’t real. The choose wisely, Paris does some fine piloting, and Torres is promoted to Chief Engineer. All the while, the EMH’s projector is malfunctioning and no one remembers to fix it so he keeps shrinking.
Kes: I’ve been thinking that you might be able to convert one of your lower decks into a hydroponics bay to grow your own food. I understand that the replicators are down and that the emergency rations won’t hold out much longer.
Kim: What about Cargo Bay 2? It was designed for organic storage and it already has adjustable environmental controls.
Janeway: When can you start?
Janeway: It’s your idea. It’s your project.Janeway giving Kes a project, because what else is she going to do?
“If you’re wrong, we’re going to have a long time to debate it.”: There’s a bit of “The Immunity Syndrome” here and a lot of “Where Silence Has Lease” but of course with a Voyager twist. I loved that Janeway gave Kes a project because it was her idea but then hated that she basically turned about and gave Carey Torres’s idea simply because he’s an OG Starfleet officer. I get that the Maquis joined their crew out of necessity and Janeway isn’t just going to promote them above Starfleet officers, but at the same time she’s LOST IN SPACE and needs the best people in the positions. I also liked that Chakotay is trying to make the best of a bad situation, he could have easily been plotting to take over the ship.
My favorite part, though, was when Janeway and Torres do the thing when two people get on the same wavelength and finish each other’s sentences… it was fantastic. Janeway is totally a science nerd in a similar way that Sisko showed his love for engineering. I can totally see young boys and girls watching this show and seeing that anyone can do science and it’s totally cool. Their chemistry also shines when they’re in the shuttlecraft together. Torres is so sure but so is Janeway so they each present their argument and ultimately Janeway reasons in a way that would make Tuvok proud, plus she’s the captain, and Torres abides. I also enjoyed the EMH because he just wants his program to run correctly and for people to remember to use him properly: state the medical emergency and turn off the program when you’re done. It’s just like when you leave a room and make sure to turn the lights off or shut the front door and lock up when you leave the house. A very good second episode that earns itself 6 sun-butter and jelly sandwiches, so as not to kill me.
“Time and Again” in TL;DR: Paris is trying to get Kim to go on a double date with him when they’re hit by a wave, there’s been a horrible accident at a nearby planet. Tuvok, Janeway, Paris, and Torres beam down to investigate when Paris and Janeway are sucked into a subspace fracture and are on the planet one day before the accident. Kes is having some visions and goes to the EMH for assistance, but there’s no brain scan on record for her and the EMH is shocked to find out there’s new crew members that he doesn’t have a file for. Janeway and Paris discuss the Prime Directive but then come to realize that they’re the reason for the planet’s destruction. As Kim and Torres try to save them, Janeway stops it which resets everything to the top of the episode. Kes comes to the bridge and is delighted to see the planet is undamaged.
EMH: Another crew. That’s nice. This is the Emergency Medical Holographic system to Captain Janeway.
Neelix: She’s not on board. She’s missing on the surface of a planet.
EMH: Missing. The Captain is missing. It seems I’ve found myself on the Voyage of the Damned. Very well. Please advise the highest ranking officer who is not missing, to see me at his earliest convenience. You may shut off my program now.The EMH has had enough revelations for the day.
“You have a lovely brain. Everybody should drink plenty of fluids.”: Kes reminds me of Guinan in “Yesterday’s Enterprise” where she knows something happened, isn’t quite sure what’s real, and then settles on being happy that all is “right” in the universe again. The EMH is overwhelmed by the limits of his programming, his being used so much more often than before, and having responsibility he wasn’t prepared to handle. The exasperation can be heard in his voice and seen in his face. He’s this very interesting mix between Vic Fontaine, Data, and the sassiest bits of Sisko.
The bulk of the episode focuses on Janeway, Paris, and the Prime Directive. On one hand I understand Janeway’s position. They don’t know anything about this area of space or anything about the inhabitants of the planet, and it’s not their job to interfere. However Paris has a point that now that they’re there and in the past, why not find out what happened and see if they can prevent it? Maybe Voyager was sent to right the wrongs of history in the Delta quadrant, no wait we’re not in an episode of Quantum Leap. The improv skills must be taught at the Academy because I can’t imagine this many people in the 24th century are that good at lying when thrown into an unusual situation. Paris jumping in front of the kid and being shot helps to try to redeem Paris, but he’s also shown twice in the same episode being proud of his cheating ways… so it’s a wash. Janeway has no idea what’s going to happen, but she realizes she’s got to do something and it takes a lot of courage to do what she did. Overall, I’m over time travel episodes for a while. I’d like 6 rolls of sushi, please.