Date: December 29, 2020
Season 5, Episode 20
Musical Accompaniment: Still working through first track songs…
Interstellar News: Today was another “do nothing day”, except that four loads of laundry were completed and I watched Jingle Jangle and it was wonderful.
TL;DR: A Malon freighter experiences several failures and one of the crew is ordered to seal the tanks manually. Tuvok and Torres are working on her anger management issues when Voyager receives a distress call from the Malon, but all they recover is Pelk and Fesek from their escape pods. They can’t outrun the ship, which is poised to explode and damage a range of three light-years, so they decide to go after it to disable it. Chakotay, Torres, Neelix, and the two Malon form an away team, but Pelk is attacked by “a creature” and dies. The team vents the decks one by one. Chakotay also gets attacked and beamed back to Voyager, Torres needs a quick detour for medicine, and eventually they get to the control room where they encounter “the creature” who is really a Malon core laborer who has been highly irradiated. Voyager sends the freighter into an O-type star while Neelix, Torres, and Fesek escape the ship in the nick of time.
Torres: Diplomacy. Janeway’s answer to everything.
Chakotay: This isn’t the Captain talking, it’s me, and I’m giving you an order. Keep your temper in check. Understood? Understood?
Chakotay: I didn’t hear you.
Chakotay: B’Elanna, I need your expertise on this mission, not your bad mood.P
“You can’t order someone to meditate.”: This was a good episode to show that not all Malon are terrible asshats (as seen in “Night” and “Extreme Risk“) and Torres isn’t completely unable to subdue her Klingon side. She tries, she really does, but some people just have a short fuse and Torres has the deck stacked against her with her Klingon heritage and Maquis attitude. Personally, as someone who cannot meditate, I understand the frustration Torres feels. Tuvok has been meditating his whole damn life (or at least his whole adult life after what we saw in “Gravity“) and he’s trying to get someone with absolutely no experience to meditate right away. It’s what happens sometimes when you forget what it’s like to be a beginner at something. I also liked that Janeway’s first response was to get the heck out of dodge and not try to play hero, but circumstances prevented them from doing so… so they had to play hero. All in all, I enjoyed this episode. Torres tried to not let her temper get the best of her, even though she had to use force in the end it wasn’t her first solution. The Malon got another example of why their dumping program wasn’t worth it… an entire dead crew and the core laborers, so totally not worth it. This episode, however, didn’t wow me. It earns itself 6 cocoa butter sticks.