VOY: “Parturition” and “Persistence of Vision”

Date: September 24, 2020

Season 2, Episodes 7 and 8

Musical Accompaniment: Violin Songs

Interstellar News: I am still exhausted. Today I received balloons, a stuffed teddy bear, and Krispy Kreme donuts from the two most important people in my life, and it helped a bit. I wish it helped more, but I can only do my best.

“Parturition” in TL;DR: Voyager is in need of food and they arrive at a “Class M” planet that might have some, so Paris and Neelix head down in a shuttlecraft until the transporters can be fixed. They snipe at each other because Paris is in love with Kes and Neelix is jealous. They find a nest of eggs and one hatches and they decide to keep watch until their parent comes back. They keep the baby alive, the parent comes back, and Voyager is able to move on from the planet that wasn’t really useful at all.

Favorite Quote:

Neelix: Tell me something. In that Starfleet survival course, did your father teach you to check for life signs before you seal yourself inside a cave?

Paris: I checked for life signs. There weren’t any.

Neelix: There are now.

Neelix asking a very, very good question.
"I ain't been dropping no eaves, sir. Promise!" Samwise Gamgee, LOTR
“Noted, Doctor. Thank you. Tell me, just how often do you eavesdrop?”

“Set a course for Planet Hell, Commander.”: This was a very standard, but very needed, episode. Neelix needed to stop being a jealous ass who took things out on Kes because other people were nice to her and Paris needed to stop acting like a lech, which he sort of proves he can do here. For both of them, their past is in the past and this is a chance for them to move forward. I absolutely loved the little lizard baby, who reminded me of the Koopas from Super Mario Bros., and the way Paris and Neelix got all paternal and adorable in making sure the baby would survive and then be accepted by its parent. Kes gets a bright spot too where she decides she wants them to come back only so she can tell them to go to hell, and then they both come back the best of friends and she’s totally floored. The crew also, unfortunately, has to go a day out of their way for the hope of sustenance and they leave empty handed. 5 green balloons for this episode.

“Persistence of Vision” in TL;DR: Everyone wants a piece of Janeway, who is this close to losing her shit, when the EMH orders her to get some rest and relaxation. She rejoins her holo-novel and later starts hallucinating that elements of the holodeck have followed her out. The EMH begins to run some tests while Janeway leaves Chakotay in charge of dealing with the Bothans, whose space they are traveling through. The Bothan mind-fucks everyone and leaves Kes and the EMH as the last two standing. Kes is able to push to hallucinations away and the EMH talks her through what Torres was doing and Kes saves the day, but the Bothan disappears.

Favorite Quote:

Janeway: Why did you do this to us?

Bothan: Because I can.

Well he didn’t strike me as the kind of alien who said “because I said so”, but he kinda is.
Drax from GUARDIANS "shhh, I'm not really here".
“I’m sure you’re very well-intentioned, Captain, and I’d like to be able to accommodate you but you see, I’m not really here.”

“You’re a powerful little thing. I must say, you surprised me.”: At first I was reminded of “A Fistful of Datas“, where everyone wants a bit of Picard’s time, and I thought this would be another “holodeck as a plot device” episode, but it wasn’t really. This episode reminds us that the crew all have something or someone waiting for them at home, even if it’s not all hearts and flowers. What begins as Janeway having delusions from her holo-novel quickly morphs into the whole ship being taken over by telepathy or technology of some kind. Kim sees Libby, Paris sees his father, Janeway sees her boyfriend, Tuvok sees his wife, and Torres hallucinates that she and Chakotay have a night of mad, passionate lovemaking. One of these is not like the others, Torres has an overactive imagination. The EMH is able to walk Kes through Torres’s notes, but Kes gets to save the day because of her powerful mind and abilities. Lots of twists and turns here and it was fun that our usual heroes all succumbed, eventually, to the whims of the alien. It was disappointing, however, that we don’t find out more about the Bothans (no, that’s not the one you’re looking for) as a race or why this one dude picked on Voyager and her crew. I am also sad they never figured out how to transfer the EMH to engineering. Some things we’ll never know. 7 Krispy Kreme donuts for this episode, you know all my favorites.

TA Out!

“The League of Extraordinary Gentleman”

Date: September 23, 2020

Interstellar News: I have been exhausted all damn day.

I never got a nap, had meetings all day, and have been stressed out for at least the last two weeks nonstop. There are no breaks built into this semester and I’ve essentially been working with no breaks or vacation since March. Normally I would have had the summer to regroup or go to some conventions, but Covid has fucked all of that up.

I’ve never completed a single New Year’s Resolution. I wanted to so much, especially this challenge I set out for myself. Three of the most important people in my life have been sharing this journey with me. I don’t know if I’ll stop watching, stop posting, or just not worry about finishing by the end of the year. Maybe I’ll get some sleep and I’ll be back to speed. Maybe this year will get better. All I know is tonight my brain doesn’t work, so I’m watching The League of Extraordinary Gentleman because it’s been on my mind and I need something mindless to watch.

I’m sorry to be a disappointment to you all.

TA Out.

VOY: “Twisted”

Date: September 22, 2020

Season 2, Episode 6

Musical Accompaniment: 25 Piano covers or another BBQ show on Netflix, haven’t decided.

Interstellar News: Things at work are heating up and I’m worried I won’t even make it to Enterprise at this point. I’ve been super stressed but I got a lot done today, including five loads of laundry.

TL;DR: It’s Kes’s second birthday and they throw a surprise party in the holodeck, leaving Kim and Tuvok on the bridge. They encounter a subspace distortion and communications go down and then everyone gets lost. Torres can’t find engineering, Janeway, Chakotay, and Paris are in the turbolift to everywhere but the bridge, the EMH is stuck on the holodeck, and Kes and Neelix can’t find her quarters. They all wind up back at the holodeck and break off to try again. Paris and Torres go to the turbolift to retrace their steps back to engineering, which works, though they wind up back at the holodeck when they try to transport themselves to the bridge. Neelix and Chakotay go on foot, encounter Tuvok at some point, and then Neelix disappears.

"so... repeating the same actions and expecting different results? well then, this should be predictably interesting" Willy Wonka meme

Kim and Janeway go through the tubes and encounter the distortion, which effects Janeway. Kes stays with the doctor to help in case there are any medical emergencies, which comes in handy when Kim brings Janeway in, she’s delirious. Everyone winds up at the holodeck again, and Chakotay chooses the more risky plan proposed by Torres as opposed to Tuvok’s. It doesn’t work and they decide to do nothing and see what happens, which turns out to be the correct thing. Janeway wakes up and explains the distortion was trying to communicate with her and their computer has over 20 gigaquads of new information, though their information was also downloaded. Neelix brings the birthday cake to the bridge and Kes asks for a picture of him to put in her locket that Tom made for her.

Favorite Quote:

Sandrine: My new bartender. Handsome, isn’t he?

EMH: I’m here in an official capacity, of course. In case of a medical emergency.

Kes: Emergency?

EMH: Surprises have been known to cause acute hyperventilation, oesophageal spasms and in extreme cases, even coronary arrest. One can never be too careful.

The EMH, always a font of medical information.

“When every logical course of action is exhausted, the only option that remains is inaction.”: This was a very strange and, dare I say, twisted episode. We start out with introducing Kes to a surprise birthday party, everyone gives her gifts, Neelix bakes a cake, and then there’s the disaster… similar in some ways to TNG’sDisaster“. Everyone is trying to get somewhere and they all keep winding back up in the holodeck program that never ends. The crew is doing what they always do, trying to find a way out of a situation they don’t even understand. It’s what is so wonderful and dangerous about engineers. Just like we saw in “Statistical Probabilities” when the “Jack Pack” thought they knew what was best and forged ahead, Torres can’t sit still. THING BROKEN, MUST FIX.

engineering flow chart. if it moves and shouldn't, use duct tape. if it doesn't move and should, use wd-40. otherwise, it's not a problem!
“So we’re just supposed to sit here and let this thing kill us?”

There’s not a lot of great here. Paris is still a little skeevy, Neelix is jealous in a way that is unfair to Kes, Torres lets her temper and confidence get the best of her, Kim’s mostly there to support, and Janeway is unconscious for most of the episode. We do get to see how Chakotay and Tuvok each choose to lead, a bit, but it’s nothing to write home about. Kim did have the fabulous idea of making the map out of the tri-corder data and the ending was interesting, as there’s all this new data to take a look at and Janeway got to do Starfleet proud by encountering a new life form. Baxter, who was last seen in “Eye of the Needle” acting a fool and not exercising correctly was at it again, which I did like as a call back to the other crew members who are also stuck on the ship. I also really disliked Chakotay and Neelix’s conversation about jealousy. YOU CANNOT “LOSE” A PERSON, because you can’t own someone. Neelix doesn’t own Kes, so he can stop being her partner or they can stop being friends and maybe they won’t be in each other’s lives but a person is not in your life to be yours. I choose to share my life with the people that love me and if they ever choose to stop then maybe we won’t share my life as much any more but they are always a part of my life.

Anyway, I say all that to then point out that Tuvok was super out of his element and it takes a lot to flummox a Vulcan and he played it perfectly. I was neither underwhelmed nor overwhelmed by this episode. I was just… whelmed. 5 new pairs of socks for this episode.

TA Out!

The Monday-ist Monday

Date: September 21, 2020

Interstellar News: Today has been the most Monday a Monday has ever Mondayed.

It started last night with husband being delayed in returning from his trip as he didn’t get in until 2 a.m. There was an incident with a cockroach, I’ll let your imagination run wild. I barely got sleep and the sleep I did get was broken. I was up for my morning office hours that not a soul showed up to… sigh. I took two naps and wrote at least 100 emails, mostly in reply to progress reports about all the first years who are failing Chemistry 101. My emotions are all over the place and, after a walk and a shower and dinner, it’s somehow almost 10 pm.

Needless to say, there is no Trek tonight because I don’t have it in me.

So much for getting caught up. In repentance, here’s an adorable picture of Loki who is totally on Zoom’s blanket. Not one minute after this picture was taken, Zoom jumped on the bed, Loki ran away, and Zoom spent the next TEN MINUTES trying to make it smell like dog instead of cat.

My cat, Loki, on my dog's blanket on the bed... not one ounce of shame.
Loki Cat, HOW DARE YOU!

Maybe Tuesday won’t be so bad.

TA Out.

VOY: “Non Sequitur”

Date: September 20, 2020

Season 2, Episode 5

Musical Accompaniment: I’m watching The American Barbecue Showdown on Netflix while I write this. I can cook and bake, but I cannot fry or grill… and I love watching grilling competitions. I absolutely love ribs and that’s the episode I’m watching.

Interstellar News: The last few days have been absolutely terrible and today has only had one highlight… watching Silverado. I’m sorry I’ve not been up for more than one episode a day, I hope to be back tomorrow.

The four leading men of SILVERADO
“I don’t wanna kill you, and you don’t wanna be dead.”

TL;DR: Kim wakes up on present-day Earth and it’s what life would be like if he never was accepted to the Voyager‘s crew… except he remembers all of his time on Voyager. Libby is his fiancee, he’s in Starfleet’s Engineering Corps, and he get a Vulcan mocha, extra sweet from a very flamboyant Italian man named Cosimo every morning. Kim tries to figure out what happened and he goes to see Paris, who also never made it to Voyager as he got into a fight with Quark and Odo put him in lockup. Paris is a drunken mess and when Kim returns to San Fransisco he’s put under observation because they think he’s a spy. Kim and Cosimo speak, Cosimo is an alien who was sent to check up on Kim because he was in an accident and got lost in the time stream. He tells Kim what he could do if he wants and Kim attempts to escape. Paris comes to help Kim, they break into Starfleet headquarters, steal a runabout, and recreate the accident… and it works. He’s transported back to Voyager from the runabout, debriefs with Janeway, and tells Paris he owes him.

Favorite Quote:

Kim: You also told me you were afraid of what would happen to you if you didn’t take Captain Janeway up on her offer. Now I see why.

Paris: What do you see, Ensign?

Kim: A loser and a drunk.

Kim: I guess in this reality, that’s all you’ll ever be.

Kim getting one on Paris.

“Look, that was another lifetime. I’m doing the best I can.”: This episode reminded me of a less successful “flash-sideways” like they did in Lost. I thought this was a fun way to show how Kim’s life would be different, but the story never sucks me in to WHY Kim is so determined to get back. Just four episodes ago Kim was figuring out if he wanted to stay with the 37’s or live the rest of his life on a starship and now he’s fighting against an almost idyllic life to return to life as an Ensign? I don’t get it. Maybe if there had been more to what happened on the runabout or if he was trying to stop Voyager from getting blown up, but all he wants is to get back and doesn’t help me to understand why. Kim never once tells anyone about what he thinks happened to Voyager and it’s also not really clear what they think happened to Voyager either.

Harry Kim and Cosimo discuss things
“Ah, to be young. Don’t worry. I’ll keep your secret.”

I also have no idea why Paris shows up at the end. The Paris we see is down on his luck, drunk, and has never met Harry Kim before. Why would he travel from France to San Fransisco to help some guy he just met and why oh why would he be okay with dying when he had no idea if Kim was even right? I’m also appalled by Starfleet Security’s ineptitude for the last half of the episode, they were just abysmally awful. I don’t really have a lot to say about this episode, because it just wasn’t great. There were so many things that were missing or could have been done better and this was not Voyager’s best. I’m going to watch more BBQ show now, because it’s more entertaining.

TA Out!