VOY: “Someone to Watch Over Me”

Date: December 30, 2020

Season 5, Episode 21

Musical Accompaniment: Continuing my iTunes playlist

Interstellar News: I have a bit more energy today, but not much.

TL;DR: Voyager has made first contact with the Kadi, who are very particular and reserved. Neelix will be taking their ambassador, Tomin, around the ship. Seven has been observing Paris and Torres which lead Janeway and the Doctor to encourage her to date. The Doctor creates lessons for Seven and then he and Paris create a wager a la She’s All That (or Pygmalion for those with different tastes). Kim helps Seven pick out a date, Chapman, and it’s super awkward. The Doctor realizes he likes Seven, Tomin gets drunk and needs medical attention, and Paris ruins the moment by announcing the wager. The Doctor wants to tell Seven how he feels, but she makes it clear she doesn’t think of him that way and he decides not to tell her. Tomin returns home and the Kadi agree to trade with Voyager.

Favorite Quotes:

EMH: You’re a woman, Seven.

Seven of Nine: Is that an observation or a diagnosis?

Seven with the sass, and an important question.
tell me a joke funny man - from THE BOONDOCK SAINTS
“Ensign Paris, tell us another one of those hologram jokes.”

Torres: How the hell do you know when we’re having intimate relations?

Seven of Nine: There is no one on deck nine, section twelve who doesn’t know when you’re having intimate relations

Apparently Torres is loud, giggle.

“We worked together on an away mission. He seemed efficient.”: I love most of this episode. Seven doing research, the Captain and Doctor encouraging her to give it a try (be experimental not a theorist), the Doctor turning everything into a lesson plan (that’s soooooooo me), and Seven’s criteria for picking a date (and Kim helping) are all so wonderful. The Doctor taking Seven into Chez Sandrine for a practice round is a good touch and the actual date itself is so fantastic. Chapman is a nervous wreck, Seven is her usual self (just dressed differently) and her manner of speaking just works so well. I love when she calls Chapman beautiful, when she asks where their “designated location” is, and when she tells him she’s sticking to water because she doesn’t want to be impaired. Seven’s reaction to the lobster and the incident with them dancing was hilarious. The bits with the Kadi ambassador were also, mostly, lots of fun. Neelix is so nervous and it turns out his charge wants to do anything that’s against the rules.

"what's this, some sort of outreach program" from SHE'S ALL THAT
“Well, to be honest, I thought one of my friends put you up to it”

This all leads me to what I intensely disliked about this episode. The Doctor falls in love with his student… again. He had this thing with Kes and then he starts in with Seven. He also comments that Seven is “old” to have just started dating and reports that marriage is the ultimate end goal of dating, and that all just rubs me the wrong way. I also disliked the way the ambassador turned into a sleaze at the end of the party, though Seven, Neelix, and Chakotay all handle it the right way. I have also always hated the “let your hair down and put on a dress and you’ll be instantly stunning” trope. Yes, I look different when I put on make-up, a dress, and let me hair down – but that doesn’t mean I’m not beautiful without all those things… just different looking than my usual. I guess it’s hard for me, as someone who is mostly attracted to a person’s personality, to understand why it’s such a big deal when someone changes their appearance. Anyway, if it wasn’t for these three things it would have been a wonderful episode, so it earns itself almost 7 wonderful minutes of dog video.

TA Out!

VOY: “Juggernaut”

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.

Favorite Quote:

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?

Torres: Yeah.

Chakotay: I didn’t hear you.

Torres: Yes.

Chakotay: B’Elanna, I need your expertise on this mission, not your bad mood.

an animal in meditation pose "come on inner peace, I don't have all day"
Me, this is me!

“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.

TA Out!

VOY: “Think Tank”

Date: December 28, 2020

Season 5, Episode 19

Musical Accompaniment: I have combined my 4- and 5-star music playlists into one big giant one and am now playing them by track (so all the Track 1’s first). There are 8.5 days of music across 3,360 songs… this should be fun.

Interstellar News: Today was a day for laying on the couch because I have felt terrible all day.

TL;DR: An alien thanks Kurros and his team for saving their world and tries to pay a different way, but they aren’t having it. Janeway is trying to figure out a puzzle while Seven takes them towards a planet that has dilithium, but it’s a trap as the Hazari have a bounty out for Voyager. Janeway and crew try to figure out how to escape when Kurros appears as an isomorphic projection to offer his services. Janeway and Seven meet Kurros and this “think tank” who offer their services for payment… slipstream technology, a recipe from Neelix, a statue of Chakotay’s, and Seven of Nine. Janeway allows Seven to make her own decision, she declines the offer, and later they figure out that the think tank were the ones that hired the Hazari. The Hazari and Voyager concoct a plan to lure the think tank in, which works, and the Hazari take charge of the group’s capture while Voyager escapes the area.

Dr. Strange recounting to Tony Stark how many futures he saw when he did his thing.
“A few torpedoes will not alter the outcome. If you do not convince Seven of Nine to join us now, the destruction of your ship is ninety nine point eight percent certain.”

Favorite Quote:

Neelix: Should I have the Doctor prepare a hypospray?

Janeway: Excuse me?

Neelix: So you can absorb the caffeine more directly. Save time.

Janeway: Point well taken. I’ll make this my last cup.

Neelix has got the jokes!
Jason Alexander as George Costanza "we are living in a society, we are supposed to act in a civilized way"

“Cheating is often more efficient.”: Jason Alexander plays Kurros and it was quite entertaining to see him so subdued from other roles I’ve seen him in. I will admit that I found it strange Voyager had a hit out on them, but then again they have been around the DQ and made some enemies… so maybe not. Once the pieces started to come together, though, I realized the “think tank” knew about Seven before they had even made contact with Janeway. What I don’t understand is why Janeway took Seven, as she usually takes Tuvok (security reasons and he’s her sounding board) or Neelix in his role as ambassador. I did love the idea of an intergalactic think thank comprised of individuals that are like their own little Collective, but I think it was also great that Seven saw them for what they were. I love that Janeway gives Seven the option and that Voyager and the Hazari work together, and there are a lot of good lines of dialogue. However the Hazari and think tank are not only introduced in this episode, but they also are neatly wrapped up at the end and it’s too quick for me. 6 minutes and 30 seconds of “All For You” by Sister Hazel (or at least on the live version I have).

TA Out!

VOY: “The Fight”

Date: December 27, 2020

Season 5, Episode 18

Musical Accompaniment: The last two songs on Fantasies & Delusions, “Film Noir” and “Dublinesque”

Interstellar News: Today I watched Ratatouille with a dear friend and participated in a virtual baby shower for another friend.

TL;DR: Chakotay was boxing in the holodeck and some aliens who live in chaotic space, and pulled Voyager in with them, try to communicate with him through a gene he has due to his heritage. It causes him to hallucinate, however, and he thinks he’s being trained by Boothby for a big fight. Chakotay encounters his grandfather, who also had the gene, and eventually communicates with the aliens who help him get Voyager out of chaotic space.

Favorite Quote:

Janeway: Tuvok tells me you’ve got a mean left jab.

Chakotay: Never spar with a Vulcan.

Chakotay trying to give his captain some good advice.
Boxer dog wearing boxing equipment

“It’s not an hallucination, not a vision quest. It’s a prize-fight!”: I’ll be honest, this was not one of my favorite episodes. It bounced around way too much, I wasn’t sure what was a flashback and what was happening in linear time, and they use the word “crazy” to describe a gene that causes Chakotay to have visions. As a counselor, I highly detest that word to describe a behavior that happens because of a biological function in a person’s body. I was also lost for a lot of the episode, although I did enjoy the boxing scenes and the way Chakotay was so immersed in the lingo. I thought it was an interesting way for the aliens to communicate, similar to “Bride of Chaotica” but just different enough to make it interesting. Not really a lot to say about this episode other than it gets 4 chubby cats meowing asynchronously.

TA Out!

VOY: “Course: Oblivion”

Date: December 26, 2020

Season 5, Episode 17

Musical Accompaniment: Continuing Fantasies & Delusions, as each song is quite long.

Interstellar News: Tonight we social distanced with three dear friends around their bon fire and it was good to get out, though it was hella cold outside.

TL;DR: Paris, who is strangely a Lieutenant again, and Torres get married, Seven catches the bouquet, and the happy couple gets showered in rice that suddenly disappears into Voyager, as the ship is falling apart. They’ve installed the enhanced warp drive and believe they’ll get home in two years, give or take a few side quests. Torres and Seven realize Voyager was affected by the enhanced warp drive when suddenly Torres and a few others get sick, in fact the whole crew has cellular degradation. Torres dies and Chakotay and Tuvok figure out that they’re actually all of the duplicates that were created during the last few minutes of “Demon“. Janeway still thinks their mission is to get back to the AQ and nothing will deter her, except for Chakotay dying. Once this happens she has the ship turn around to try to get back to their planet, but more folks die and deteriorate. Janeway dies, Kim is in charge, and their time capsule explodes so they send out a distress call. The real Voyager finally gets in range but is too late, the ship has completely lost shape.

Favorite Quote:

Neelix: Are you sure this rice isn’t supposed to be cooked? Steamed, fried?

EMH: The idea is to shower the couple with a symbol of good fortune, not garnish them like a roast chicken.

Rice is no longer used in outdoor weddings as it can make the birds explode.
Paris and Torres in front of Janeway
Seven of Nine: “Given the volatile nature of their relationship, one might have predicted homicide rather than matrimony.”
Tuvok: “When it comes to affairs of the human heart, it is wise to look beyond logic.”

“We’ve come too far to be stopped by dust.”: This was a fun little episode, because some of the clues where there. Paris suddenly being back to his promoted rank, he and Torres getting hitched when there was no proposal beforehand, and the enhanced warp drive (where there was no mention of it before) was all a little fishy, not to mention the bit with the rice. However I had completely forgotten about the events of “Demon” until Chakotay and Tuvok were doing their investigation. I knew something was up when Torres died, but once I realized these were the duplicates it was hard to feel shocked when someone else died. The Janeway duplicate was so deep in the fantasy of Janeway’s life and mission, as were the rest of the crew, that they kind of screwed themselves when they didn’t immediately return to the planet. Once they realized what they were, they should have all said “fuck it, let’s go back to our home where we can live and be happy”. I’m also wondering what happened in the 10 months between when they were off having their own adventures if the real Voyager ever encountered someone who had heard of them and thought it strange. It was kind of fun and kind of gross to see them all deteriorating, but I will admit to not really being invested in their journey as much when they didn’t immediately turn around. 6 sweet potato dumplings for this follow up.

TA Out!