Date: September 25, 2020
Season 2, Episodes 9 and 10
Musical Accompaniment: J.S. Bach, the Cello-Suites
Interstellar News: Today was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day. I did manage to get some work done, have a chat with a dear friend, and eat a wonderful dinner thanks to take out, but everything else was a total shit-show today.
“Tattoo” in TL;DR: Tuvok, Chakotay, Neelix, and Torres are on a planet when Chakotay starts having flashbacks to a trip with his father. Chakotay was young and wanted to leave the tribe, he had Captain Sulu recommend him to Starfleet, and he wanted nothing to do with whatever his father wanted to teach him. There are a lot of similarities to Chakotay’s trip to Central America and this planet and eventually he finds the aliens that honored his ancestors. Meanwhile, on the ship, Kes chides the EMH about his lack of compassion so he programs himself with the flu. He is miserable and out of his mind when it doesn’t end on time, but Kes programmed it to go a littler longer so he might learn some humility.
EMH: I feel like I’m fading. Just fading away. You don’t know what that means to a hologram.
Kim: What seems to be the problem?
EMH: Oh. My simulated virus is leading me to a simulated death.
Kes: It’s nothing to worry about. I just added a couple of hours to his computer program. He’ll be fine in about forty five minutes. Knowing when it would end didn’t exactly make it a fair test, did it, Doctor?
EMH: She is far more devious than I ever suspected.The EMH being overly dramatic and Kes being spectacularly devious.
“Are holograms supposed to sneeze?”: I want to start by saying I loved, loved, loved the side plot with the EMH giving himself the flu. If you’ve never sneezed, or been stuffed up, or had a fever, it can be hard to relate to. As a woman who has terrible cramps once a month I know it’s hard for the men in my life to understand what I’m going through. Sure you can be sympathetic, but it’s hard to be empathetic… which is what Kes was getting at. While it’s true women have been pregnant forever, not all of them react the same way to pregnancy. It’s totally a thing Data would have done to feel more human and the EMH is totally doing it FOR SCIENCE! Kes proves he can’t handle it, and I hope it has some effect on him while he’s treating patients in the future.
Chakotay’s story was interesting right up until the end. You can see he was redeeming himself in his father’s eyes. As a young man he wanted nothing to do with his culture and when it was too late, after his father died, he tried to become one with the tribe. It’s hard to think about how life would be different if we decided to honor the traditions of those who lived in America before the Europeans came over. Using every part of the animal you hunt and never hunting for sport, being one with the land, and giving our elders the important task of teaching the younger generations and leading us with their wisdom. In the end, though, the aliens explain they were responsible for all of the Indigenous tribes and that’s super ridiculous. It would be great if it was just Chakotay’s tribe but all of the tribes have such different culture and language that it’s almost impossible that they all came from one place and then just had different traditions. I mean it’s not like it’s the varied different sects of Christianity… or maybe it is. I enjoyed the backstory and, as I said, the EMH subplot, but the ending wasn’t all that great. 6 stuffed teddy bears with bows around their necks.
“Cold Fire” in TL;DR: It’s been 10 months since “Caretaker“, Tuvok and Kes work on her telepathic abilities, and the remains of the alien start going bonkers as they might be close to his mate. They find a smaller array and a group of Ocampa led by Tanis, who comes aboard Voyager. Tanis is interested in helping Kes grow her abilities, but they get out of control. Suspira, the Caretaker’s mate, believes Voyager killed him so she tries to take it out on them. Kes defends herself against Tanis and Suspira is trapped by Tuvok’s weapon. Janeway tries to get Suspira to help them, but she leaves. They’re no closer to home and Kes is totally Jean Grey.
Tuvok: Without the darkness, how would we recognize the light? Do not fear your negative thoughts. They are part of you. They are a part of every living being, even Vulcans.
Tuvok: The Vulcan heart was forged out of barbarism and violence. We learned to control it, but it is still part of us. To pretend it does not exist is to create an opportunity for it to escape.Tuvok dropping some Vulcan knowledge that is still important for all of us.
“Vulcans make the worst patients.”: Kes is fantastic here as I truly believe she’s a giddy two year old who is super eager to learn and meet more of her people. She leaps before she looks which is what young people tend to do. Neelix is super supportive of her and it’s refreshing because he’s turned over a new leaf after “Parturition“. At first I believed Tanis was cautious because of the rumors but then I realized he just wanted a new female in the mix, especially once who was young and impressionable, and he would do anything for Suspiria. It’s heartbreaking that she won’t hear them out, but Janeway could have explained it while they had her trapped and then let her out, but alas that didn’t happen. Kes gets to be bad ass and sort of save the day again, but Tuvok gets to help Kes understand that we all have “good” and “bad” in us, it’s just what we choose to highlight. 5 bandanas with made up words on them.