Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Voyager - Episode Guide - Season 2

A handful of episodes originally slated to conclude Star Trek: Voyager season 1 instead lead off season 2 in rather ho-hum fashion, excepting maybe “The 37s” which too was marred by the awful characterization of Fred Noonan. Star Trek noobs and hardcore fans alike could have some difficultly trawling through the episodes of season 2, as the low-stakes stories and muted character interrelations of this series continue.

In lieu of proper baddies such as Klingons, Romulans and Borg (and how much better does Voyager get when the Borg enter the scene?), season 2 appears to be an attempt to sell viewers on the badassness of the Kazon. How the Borg have failed to conquer these relative wusses’ space is beyond Star Trek Guide’s comprehension.

And along the way to descending into soap operatics to finally crash and burn in a pretty lame cliffhanger, we’re served up two of the most hideously awful episodes ever in “Tuvix” and “Threshold.”

So, yeah, not one of the better ST seasons.

1. The 37s – The Voyager crew discovers not only an Earth-like colony on a planet where it sure shouldn’t be, but also a handful of individuals from 1937, including Amelia Earhart and obnoxiously-portrayed navigator Fred Noonan. ***

2. Initiations – Chakotay takes a shuttlecraft to perform a ritual (don’t ask) and is attacked by a zealous Kazon youth whose own coming-of-age rite calls on him to kill a stranger. Spirit animal, my people, etc. *

3. Projections – Head trip for The Doctor! (Of course; it’s directed by Johnathan Frakes.) The Doctor comes online to find the Enterprise (nearly) empty of personnel and is then told that it is he who is real and the Voyager is in fact- a holodeck hologram! The first of many episodes is which Robert Picardo gets to shine. ****

4. Elogium – As Voyager passes through a cloud of interesting space cicadas (or something like that), Kes goes though the Elogium, kinda like Pon Farr for her race and … well, just imagine watching a lot of Neelix ruminating over whether he wants to be a father. Yeah. **

5. Non-Sequitur – Head trip for Harry Kim, who wakes up in San Francisco, living an everyday life and having never boarded Voyager. ***

6. Twisted – Time and space are distorting Voyager like Escher in 4D; various pairs and trios attempt to maneuver their way through an ever-changing ship. Pretty good stuff, but we’re denied a potential awesome wideshot of a twisted Voyager and/or the bridge crew running about the ship as though in an Escher illustration. ***

7. Parturition – Neelix reaches an apex of annoying usefulness, as he spends most of this episode arguing with Paris over the affections of Kes. In the end, the boys essentially agree that Kes is already more or less Neelix’s possession. Is this even Star Trek? 0

8. Persistence of Vision – Head trip for everyone … literally! Hallucinations and catatonia for everyone except for the show’s stars, then pretty much everyone. ***

9. Tattoo – When Chakotay encounters aliens with identical tattoos, he thinks he’s found an essential part of his ancestry … or something. **

10. Cold Fire – The Voyager crew discovers a second “Caretaker”; this particular caretaker has been taking care of some Ocampas for about 300 years. Kes attempts to act as go-between for Voyager, who reckon this Caretaker might send them home; unfortunately, she’s not as sympathetic as the original … ***

11. Maneuvers – A group of Kazon board the Enterprise, steal transporter technology and kidnap Chakotay, all in an effort to unite the various Kazon factions. And Seska returns to torment Chakotay and bump the soapiness of her sub-plotline up a notch. ***

12. Resistance – On an away mission, Tuvok and B’Elanna are captured while Janeway is injured. She is nursed back to health by an aged member of the resistance who believes the captain to be his daughter. He is not as he seems, etc. **

13. Prototype – Voyager retrieves a robot adrift in space and Torres revives it. The robot rewards her by abducting her (that’s three episodes in a row with at least one kidnapping; quite a common theme on Voyager, eh?) and forcing her to assist in building new robots. Some interesting – and chilling – plot twists in this one. ***

14. Alliances – In the first of many bad-idea alliances, Janeway reckons that allying the Voyager with one or more Kazon groups might help them more easily transverse the damn Delta Quadrant. Fortunately, she realizes the idea went to hell quickly enough… **

15. Threshold – Often cited as the worst episode of Star Trek ever, the “plot” goes something like this: Paris exceeds warp 10 in a shuttlecraft thanks to new experimental technology. He passes through every point in the Universe, evolves into a giant worm-like thing and impregnates the now worm-like Janeway. Must be seen to be believed. 0

16. Meld – How dark does Voyager get? Well, the story arc of Lon Suder doesn’t get much darker. This psychotically straight-up murders a comrade, then begins a therapeutic process with Tuvok. ***

17. Dreadnought – An episode which answers the question, “Is that an AI missile from Cardassia in your tractor beam or are you just happy to see me?” Trust STG here: That joke was undeniably more fun to compose than sitting through this snooze fest. *

18. Death Wish – Two Q, one the familiar trickster played by John DeLancie and the other a rather bubbly would-be suicide. The two try to hash out the issue of upper-dimensional euthanasia in classic style before bringing Janeway and others to the Q’s Beckettesque homeland. ****

19. Lifesigns – To save a Vidiian woman’s life from the Phage, The Doctor downloads her mental processes into a hologram- soon enough, she proclaims she’d rather not go back to her old body. ***

20. Investigations – A neat bit of espionage engineered by Janeway and Tuvok and involving Paris is nearly blown to smithereens when Neelix decides to start producing a daily television news ‘n’ gossip roundup show. (Why would a group of 150 living in a very small space need a news show about the community, anyway…?) Thank the gods that these cutesy nonsense episodes are soon forgotten. **

21. Deadlock – Ah, good old-fashioned temporal paradoxes! A second, alternate-unvierse Voyager is called into existence and one must be sacrificed to Vidiians for the sake of the other. A surprising twist at the end caps a suspenseful episode. ****

22. Innocence – Tuvok and a Red Shirt crash land on an uninhabited moon. Tuvok finds three children who were also aboard a crash-landed ship. Naturally, the children aren’t simple children … ***

23. The Thaw – The Voyager crew finds a handful of aliens kept in stasis (and a mental hell) by a being of their own creation. Why would they willingly create a creepy clown? Well… **

24. Tuvix – A transporter accident (wow, did Voyager have problems with those transporters) results in a highly stupid physical merger of Tvok and Neelix. We mean *really* stupid. Like “Faces”-level stupid. 0

25. Resolutions – Janeway and Chakotay contract a disease which apparently has no effect if they stay on a given planet. They do so and live together for a couple months before Captain Tuvok returns with the ship and everything’s hunky-dory again. **

26. Basics, Part I – And here the soap opera utterly takes over. Seska has a baby that she claims in Chakotay’s – not made the ordinary way, mind you, but by taking some sample of his DNA – and, after a vision in which his father demands that this baby is one of Their People and he must take it away, Janeway agrees to go out of the way to confront the Kazon she’s hanging with. Naturally – and every viewer surely guessed – that Seska was in league with the Kazon. They easily take Voyager and leave the entire crew on a pretty useless planet with a Stone Age population. **