Star Trek: Voyager

"Remember"

***1/2

Air date: 10/9/1996
Teleplay by Lisa Klink
Story by Brannon Braga & Joe Menosky
Directed by Winrich Kolbe

Review by Jamahl Epsicokhan

"She showed me everything—no apologies, no requests for forgiveness, just the truth." — B'Elanna Torres

Nutshell: A nicely done allegory. Sensibly written and wonderfully acted.

Star Trek has always been known to venture into social commentary and allegorical content, and with "Remember" the Voyager team comes up with a winner—the best episode of Voyager so far this season.

Trek's best stories are usually those that add up to something beyond what lies on the surface—a story that works on the outside but also has lasting impact on the inside. DS9 attempted this the same week with "The Ship," a story about a crashed Jem'Hadar warship that also turned out to be an analysis of the consequences of mistrust and its resulting death. The problem with "The Ship" was that it just pushed too hard at the end; the conclusion was bluntly overwrought and devoid of the true lasting emotional effects it needed—in my opinion, anyway.

"Remember," on the other hand, is one of Voyager's better moments. It has more of an even hand, more believable character reactions, and a bit more genuine feeling than "The Ship" had—although even "Remember" tends to push its message into the realm of the obvious at times.

The story enters a group from a race called the Enarans, for whom the Voyager crew is providing quick transport to another colony in exchange for mining resources. The Enarans are a friendly telepathic race who can share their thoughts at will, as demonstrated by an early scene where one of the Enarans helps Janeway play a musical instrument by transmitting weeks of memories of lessons in mere seconds.

About this time, and obviously not coincidence, Lt. Torres begins having very sensual and realistic dreams. At first the dreams seem to be harmless—a torrid love affair with passionate nights. A disturbing image, however, appears on the second night—that of her lover being burned in front of her eyes. By this point, Torres' curiosity is too potent to deny, and before long, she realizes these dreams mean something—in the dreams she knows who the people are, and realizes that she herself is another person: a young Enaran woman named Kirina. The dreams begin to organize into a sort of "narrative."

One of the most compelling aspects of "Remember" is the way Torres gets so personally caught up in the plight of the "characters" in her dreams. I respect Torres a lot for her actions in this episode, because she takes a stand for something she believes in, and has the strong, stubborn intensity that originally made the character interesting. At the same time, Torres never comes across in this episode as remotely wrong-headed—something that sometimes becomes equated with such words as "impulsive" and "stubborn."

Torres realizes that Kirina is in the middle of a difficult situation, and refusing the treatment that would prevent her from having more dreams, Torres says she needs to know. "I don't know what I... what she's going to do," she says, with a line that very subtly but effectively indicates how caught up she has become in living the identity.

The dreams reveal that Kirina's lover Dathan (Charles Esten) is among a large groups of Enarans who don't embrace the direction technology is going. The Enaran populace has labeled this sub-group of their culture the "regressives," and have come up with a solution that is in the "best interests" of everyone—banishment of the regressives from the planet.

Dathan is wary of this promise by the Enarans. He has heard rumors of mass execution—rumors that Kirina naively states as completely untrue. But, Dathan points out, relatives that have supposedly been relocated have not been heard from since. Are the Enarans lying about their intentions? Every dream's clues brings B'Elanna closer to unlocking the Enarans' recent history—a history with a dark secret.

As the story continues to develop on both planes, the dark secret reveals itself as a commentary on the Holocaust (hardly less than obvious), but the microcosm here is about one woman—Kirina—and the way she is coerced into accepting mass murder in the interests of "progress." The story's central tragedy builds with a slow certainty as Kirina's father (Bruce Davison) explains the "rational" reasons that the regressives must be sent away—to which Kirina begins the slow but steady process of convincing herself into accepting this situation, marked with perhaps the most simultaneously pointed and subtle line in the episode: "So it's dangerous to have them living here." Whether or not that line ends in a question mark is the whole point of the scene.

When Torres realizes that these memories are being transmitted to her from an elderly Enaran named Jora Mirrel (Eve Brenner)—trying in her final hours of life to expose the truth from elsewhere on board the ship (the story reveals that Mirrel was really Kirina all those years ago), the point becomes clear. The Enarans have lied to their own children. They've covered up their own history. The next generation is completely unaware of their atrocious past. Torres is furious. In a moment of impulse she confronts the other Enarans on board the ship.

I liked Torres' actions (and particularly her point that "It's not just a matter of history. This could happen again if no one knows it happened before"). But Janeway's reactions to the delicate situation are good as well. There's a general sense that "no we really shouldn't interfere in their culture, but feel free to try to convince the skeptic Enarans who have been taught this never happened."

And that's exactly what Torres does. She tries to expose the secret Jora Mirell could never afford to—again, on a microcosmic level: word of mouth, just one person to another, repeating the cycle (as demonstrated with a final scene that repeats an early scene). She's not trying to start revolutions any more than Mirell was. As Torres aptly puts it, "She showed me everything—no apologies, no requests for forgiveness, just the truth." And that's precisely what Torres hopes to do as the episode ends.

As an allegory, "Remember" is quite nicely handled, but what really makes the episode a standout is the overall vision of the production when combined with the technical credits and the small details. Winrich Kolbe's direction is absolutely stellar. Here is a script that introduces an entire new world and culture, several characters tied together in different ways, and puts them within a series of dream sequences that exist inside their own reality. Yet Kolbe keeps a firm grip on what happens and where we are. In addition, his photography technique is absorbing; in fact, it's top-notch and feels quite cinematic.

Lisa Klink's teleplay deserves high praise as well. It creates its characters efficiently and draws them intelligently. Most of all, Klink develops the true narrative strength through B'Elanna's thoughts and actions. Klink seems to have a clear idea of what the character would do in this situation; so what happens, as a result, is credible.

Still, if one element truly carries "Remember" it has to be the performance of Roxann Dawson, because her work in the dual role is impressive. There are subtleties in the performance that should not be overlooked. The story allows Dawson to display an acting range that I haven't seen before. I can't put my finger on what is so right about her portrayal, but there's something about it that really works. I think it's because when I see Kirina, I think "Kirina" and not "B'Elanna." Dawson's ability to separate the two (with a subtle aura that resides somewhere in the subconscious) is the true standout quality of "Remember."

Another reason this works is because it proceeds quietly, for the most part. The show only hits us with a sledgehammer on maybe one or two circumstances, but even then those circumstances are warranted and effective. The scene where Kirina chants along "Yes! Yes! Yes!" with some other Enarans after the slaughter of a group of regressives (including her own Dathan) sent chills down my spine.

Perhaps the one detraction from the story are the way the ideas near the end of the "dream" aspect are a bit crammed together—the show's microcosm attempts to cover years in Enaran history within minutes of screen time—but that's not a very big problem. This story is still easily one of Voyager's most "mature" stories ever, and genuinely exhibits the Trekkian moral conscience.

Previous episode: False Profits
Next episode: Sacred Ground

◄ Season Index

47 comments on this review

Jakob M. Mokoru
Thu, Dec 20, 2007, 3:49pm (UTC -5)
Just two words: Great episode!!!
grumpy_otter
Thu, Jan 1, 2009, 5:28pm (UTC -5)
I was so impressed with Eve Brenner's performance that I tried to find out more about her. She has a long list of "1 episode" credits on various television programs. An amazing and subtle performance--she contributed mightily to the success of this episode.

I notice that you wisely did not address the silly little sub plot of Harry being attracted to one of the Enarans--it just distracted from the brilliance of the main theme.
EP
Thu, Feb 19, 2009, 8:36pm (UTC -5)
I won't ding the episode for the razor-thin premise of telepathic linkage, since far worse episodes have abused such a thing far more egregiously.
I won't ding the episode either for using Torres as the psychic conduit, considering nothing about Mirrel's story seemed to favor the selection of Torres over any other female cast member.
But why not throw in a little ambiguity? Torres has absolutely ZERO direct evidence of the story that has been implanted in her head. That she is compelled to believe in those experiences without question is supported only because the script demands that she be right. Why not show the regressives' warts? That they actively interfered with the dominant powers? Perhaps even resorted to violence to demonstrate their resolve? Otherwise, it's far too easy to manufacture sympathy for the regressives, who are presented with the same folksy agrarian mystic of the Ba'ku from STIX.
If you can't tell, I really hated the Ba'Ku, by the way. :-)
Matrix
Wed, May 19, 2010, 12:00am (UTC -5)
The scene with Torres confronting the enarans was really good! I'll have to watch this one again.
On a side note, did anyone when they first heard of this episode's title think of star trek's more famous use of the word remember, and that voyager has it's own resident vulcan. Yeah, that's how I thought the story was to go. ;-)
navamske
Wed, Sep 29, 2010, 7:20pm (UTC -5)
Nits: (1) It strains credulity that a person could remove a medical monitoring device without the Doctor's -- or at least Sick Bay's -- being notified. (2) In the dream (or memories, whatever they were), B'Elanna was an Enaran. I don't have a problem with the fact that the other characters in the dream didn't see her Klingon ridges, but why wasn't she wearing one of those ugly shmattas on her head like the other Enarans? (3) Is it that hard for the Star Trek writers to think up original alien names? You got Kes from Voyager and the Kes (from the planet Kesprytt) in TNG's "Attached," you got Dax from ST:VI and the various Daxes from DS9; here you got Jor Brell (think Jo'Brill from TNG's "Suspicions") and Dathan (think Dathon from TNG's "Darmok"). (4) On top of everything else, you got Pinky Petersen from "All in the Family" making music with a giant trackball.
Greg M
Thu, Feb 3, 2011, 2:37am (UTC -5)
Navamske,

Regarding point two, have you ever watched Quantum leap. I think everyone saw her as Kirina, yet we saw her normally. Not sure if that's a valid nitpick.
bigpale
Thu, Feb 17, 2011, 12:39am (UTC -5)
I'm rewatching all the Voyager episodes, and while this one is certainly one of the shows better moments, I felt that it -- like so many others on the show -- fell apart some at the end.

The show reached a great climax with Torres discovering the identity of Kirina, but then the subsequent confrontation and the "murder" plot twist just felt forced, and even a little convoluted.

It is a nutshell of Voyager: A great sci-fi premise that can't maintain it's focus, and falls apart at the end. It had the potential to be a **** show, but it falls to ***.

Great acting by Dawson though.
LWG
Sat, Apr 9, 2011, 4:29pm (UTC -5)
The viewer can understand B'Elanna's position, but I'll bet it didn't win her points in popularity with the crew. She had no proof, and because of her outburst in the mess hall, they lost out on an alliance, a trade agreement, AND shore leave. Or at least that's how it would seem to the rest of them. I'll bet they weren't too happy with her.
Alex
Mon, Mar 19, 2012, 2:17am (UTC -5)
I believe that the set up of this episode is very similar to TNG's "Violations", which is what fueled my expectations while watching the show. In fact, the actress who plays Jora Mirell appears in the TNG episode. It seems somewhat unfortunate that "Remember" follows an earier script so closely; "Violations 2.0" anyone?

That said, I did appreciate the great acting and powerful allegory. One tidbit that I'd like to add is the manner in which the Enarans deny even the plausibility of their wrongdoing. This happens both in memory sequence--when Korenna's father repeatedly denies any abuse on the part of the Enari regime, as well as in present time--when Jor Berel rebukes the captain's inquiries. "I find it impossible that any of us could be doing this purposelly... it just isn't done... I assure you we have strict ethics." are his stubborn and dismissive responses at suggestion that one of the Enarans could be responsible for Belana's psychic "dreams". To me, this furthered the theme of denial and suppression of truth among the Enarans.

There is almost a stubborn about this denial
Ghostwheel
Wed, Mar 21, 2012, 11:37am (UTC -5)
I find it very difficult to believe that these atrocities could occur on a planet of telepaths. With everybody sharing thoughts, feelings, and emotions, wouldn't that blunt any uncompromising differences between them, take the edge off, so to speak?

Would telepaths act like psychopathic war criminals?

Could such an event remain at all secret on a planet of telepaths?

(While Suder is a Betazoid, he claims he can't even feel his own emotions, much less somebody else's, so clearly something is wrong with his native teleathy.)
Justin
Sat, Mar 24, 2012, 2:55am (UTC -5)
@Alex, I too was reminded of TNG's "Violations" when I first saw "Remember" back when it originally aired. They are quite similar except for one distinction - "Violations" sucked.

"Remember," on the other hand, was riveting, poignant, and extremely well acted. Jammer's review was spot on describing Dawson's ineffable performance as Kirinna. Possibly her best acted episode of Voyager's entire run.
Paul York
Thu, May 10, 2012, 1:47am (UTC -5)
I was very moved by this episode. It exposes an old injustice that has been covered up. Yes, the Holocaust comes to mind, but so does any number of atrocities, including the genocide of native North Americans and the mass extermination of feeling sentient non-human animals at the hand of man under various pretexts and excuses and using various rationalizations. The rationalizations used by the oppressor in this tale are common: self-preservation used to justify the murder of others, and then the pretence that that murder did not occur. Unfortunately such things continue on Earth in various ways. Think of Palestine, where an entire group of less technologically astute "regressives" is being decimated and marginalized slowly by another group to acquire land and water. Brilliant episode. Great social commentary. I have a deep appreciation for the Voyager writers and producers for this one.
Peremensoe
Tue, Sep 25, 2012, 11:16am (UTC -5)
This was a staggering episode.

Not perfect--it seemed a bit rushed to me, and IMO could have been developed into two parts. There could have been a better design for the Enarans, and more explanation of the terms of their telepathic ability.

But this was among the *very* best I've seen from Voyager. The similarity to "The Violated" is superficial; this is much weightier (strange to say that about a Voyager episode over a Next Generation, but there it is).

The execution scene, and B'Elanna confronting the Enarans, are a couple of the rawest moments ever in Voyager.
Peremensoe
Tue, Sep 25, 2012, 11:18am (UTC -5)
(Oops, of course I mean "Violations.")
Eithnepath
Sat, May 18, 2013, 6:57am (UTC -5)
Great ep. Shame they didn't have more political courage and made the allegory a bit more transparent--isreal/palistine.
Michael
Wed, Jun 12, 2013, 12:48pm (UTC -5)
What an ineffably boring, interminable episode.

I guess Jammer and most people commenting here like these ponderous shows where a character goes on a mental trip of some kind. As for me, I can't stand them. I watch sci-fi for lasers and phasers, spatial anomalies, and the much-maligned "technobabble." If I want psychological drama, there are dozens f other genres and media that provide that.

FAIL.
Ian
Sun, Jul 14, 2013, 4:26pm (UTC -5)
First off the allegory is either the Native-American experience or the Holocaust.

To those few who posted here that it somehow represents the Israel "palestinian," situation you are REALLY deluded.
The only way to make THAT comparasion would be if the regressives mentioned here outmumbered the other Enarans 30-1 and had launched FIVE wars of exterimination against them and decades of merciless terrorism as well. All to keep the Enarans from having only a small bit of land that historically belonged to them, after THEY had been ethnically cleansed everywhere else...

Too bad Trekkers are prone to mis-information like too many others...
Elliott
Sun, Jul 14, 2013, 7:42pm (UTC -5)
@Ian :

This is a forum for you and others to voice their opinions about Star Trek, not the Israel-Palestine conflict. This is the 3rd or 4th post I believe in which you've mistaken this site for some sort of Zionist platform.

If this episode is taken as an allegory to that particular situation (which it very easily can, as well as those you mentioned and some others), I think we can all appreciate that the characters and cultures were not portrayed as black and white, good v. evil. The situation is complicated and there are points to be made by either side, but the first step is honesty.
Kevin
Tue, Dec 17, 2013, 1:36pm (UTC -5)
I thought this was a very powerful episode, but the confrontation at the farewell party was a bit much for me. I have a hard time believing Janeway would have tolerated that kind of interruption and outburst - she's much too diplomatic for that. Also, even though Trek is much to saintly to let it happen, I thought that this would have been one of the best episodes of any series had it simply ended with the scene where the children are being taught that the holocaust didn't happen. The idea that a society could go through that and then actually cover it up and move on was truly chilling. If the writers had simply let that stand and force viewers to process those ideas in the raw...wow.
Corey
Wed, Feb 19, 2014, 6:19pm (UTC -5)
If anyone reads Ian's comment and regards it as fact, I'd urge them to read Einstein and Ghandi's comments on the Arab/Israeli conflict, and study seriously the cause of the 1948 war, the Suez Crisis (UK, France and Israel trying to steal Sinai from Egypt), the Six Day war and the 1973 war, none of the latter fought in Israel or for Israeli territory. One should also study the massacres commited by everyone in the in the 1930s (Brits vs Arabs, Arabs vs British Empire, Zionists vs Arabs etc), and read Chomsky's papers online on the illegality of Israel's formation (the UN Security council never agreed).

As for this episode, one of the season's best, but I think it's also the kind of stuff that DS9 did better in S1 and S2. Note also that Jammer opens his review by mentioning that Trek does social allegory and politics well, but actually it rarely seems to do this. TNG has a couple very great political episodes (Drumhead and First Contact leaps to mind), and DS9 as well, but mostly Trek favoured Technobabble over politicobabble.

@Peremensoe: Which one was Violations? That Troi mind-rape episode? Didnt a similar thing happen in DS9 with OBrien's wife being mind-invaded? It seems each Trek series has a mental-invasion episode. I cant think of any better than Remember though.
Trekker
Fri, Mar 28, 2014, 7:53pm (UTC -5)
Best Star Trek "genocide" allegory; it is not commenting on the details of mass murder or concentration camps, but the simple acceptance that "a group of people" were unworthy to live along with another group.

In human history, we've made many similar claims and done many mass genocides based on this premise.

It does not need to be about Jews vs Germans/Aryans, Muslims vs Ethnic Bosnians, Armenians vs Turks, traditional cambodians vs Pol Pot loyalists, and on...

I can name even more, but it is a simple fact that we are far from achieving the enlightenment that Star Trek promises.

9.5/10
Ric
Tue, Apr 1, 2014, 3:49pm (UTC -5)
Excelent episode, with a fantastic ending. Sure, mind-invasion episodes are not new in Star Trek. But this one was helded with a soft nice touch, and a such a feeling of powerlessness in last part. Really good.

As of the comparison with Israel-Palestine, I regret to have read Ian's comment and strongly second Corey's suggestions above.
kapages
Mon, Jun 16, 2014, 11:18pm (UTC -5)
Trekker got it right. This is Star Trek.

Of course, Belana is not acting as a senior officer but as a teenager.
Even if she did feel she was right, the confrontation should have been performend only with the captain's consent.
Robert
Thu, Jul 17, 2014, 11:08am (UTC -5)
@kapages - A senior officer could have maybe handled that better (as she acknowledged) but she didn't even finish her Starfleet training and even in Starfleet I doubt they teach you to feel less angry at genocide.

Also, I have to wonder if that's why she was chosen, because she looked like if she got pissed off enough she'd deal with it loudly.
Vylora
Sun, Aug 24, 2014, 8:38am (UTC -5)
One thing that I've always appreciated Star Trek for was its ability to tell any kind of story. First and foremost it is a show about people; humans and aliens alike. It just happens to be in a futuristic setting. Therefore it makes sense that it can have episodes with nearly unlimited opportunities for plot and subject matter. An extremely well-written allegorical episode, such as this one, only serves to remind me of said appreciation.

Really great dialogue and performances, beautifully directed, and a plot that is very nicely thought out. It also helps that the guest stars hold their own quite well and enhance the experience. Nearly a classic Trek outing and one of Voyager's best thus far.

3.5 stars.
SlackerInc
Sun, Dec 28, 2014, 10:08pm (UTC -5)
I agree: I thought this was fantastic in so many ways, easily one of the top two or three Voyager episodes up to this point and maybe the best.

I read at Memory Alpha that while Roxann Dawson, Kate Mulgrew, and director Winrich Kolbe all thought very highly of the episode's script and Dawson's performance, both Brannon Braga and Jeri Taylor thought it was unsuccessful. I wonder why?
Skeptical
Tue, Jan 27, 2015, 7:11pm (UTC -5)
I admit to having two biases against this episode that may color my opinion:

1) How long has it been since Voyager met up with an actual friendly reasonable species, rather than a hostile or xenophobic or some other ways irrational group? Honestly, I think it's the first season. The alien of the week is almost inevitably the bad guy, and even the ones that seem somewhat ok at first end up proving to be rude and untrustworthy anyway. So when the episode started, I thought we had FINALLY made an episode where the aliens are friendly and engaging and all around pleasant. Nope, guess not. So that bugged me when it became clear that they were hiding a dirty secret.

2) As others have mentioned, there is a massive plot hole here. We have the common theme of one person stuck between two people she cares about, both of whom are saying that the other one is actually evil. Like I said, a reasonably common theme. Except Kirina is a telepath. Now, they don't seem to be like Bajorans in that they can read each other's minds, but they do have the ability to project their memories and experiences to another person. So instead of trying to convince Kirina with words, either Boyfriend or Dad should have mindmelded or whatever with her. Well, maybe only Boyfriend, since it's implied Dad was lying. And maybe he planned to but then heard Dad coming and had to hide. But then, why didn't Kirina demand it from either Boyfriend or Dad? Seems like that would be the only way to convince someone of it. After all, that's the whole point of the episode!

So maybe those two annoyances color my opinion of the episode as a whole. I think it's good, but don't hold it in the same high regard as other commenters here apparently do. The story did seem to take a bit too long to develop. I was rolling my eyes a bit at Torres dreamy love affair before realizing that there was something more going on, and I think they could have cut down a bit on the slow rollout and expanded more the aftermath of Torres' outburst. I also thought things escalated way too quickly in the dreamworld, with Kirina being conflicted about a resettlement in one moment and jumping to support for public executions the next. That was way too much of a leap for me.

But other than that, good job! I want to give particular props to the writers and Mulgrew, as Janeway's diplomacy worked quite well here (far cry from The Swarm, that's for sure). She stood by her engineer's convictions while simultaneously obeying the letter of the Prime Directive and not creating a new enemy out of these people. And, of course, props to Dawson for her acting in this episode as well.

And as a random aside, I found it humorous that the evil government in this episode was so clearly a Leftist one (even calling themselves progressive at some point), given the typical political bent of Hollywood. Nice to see that it wasn't yet another caricature of what Hollywood thinks Republicans are...
Yanks
Wed, Aug 12, 2015, 3:44pm (UTC -5)
I only have one tiny nit-pic in this episode.

B'Elanna's rant at the end should have been with Jessen in private in quarters. Janeway should have seen to it and Yoyager then could have had some relaxing shore leave and restocked. Folks like this don't come along much in the DQ. Every race has skeletons in the closet.

I honestly didn't think Roxann could outdo the performance she gave us in 'Faces'.

But I think she did.

Well done. 4 stars from me.
Robert
Thu, Aug 13, 2015, 7:40am (UTC -5)
@Yanks - I'm glad to see you give Roxanne such high marks. I totally loved her in both of those episodes (as well as Parallax, Prototype and Dreadnought... 2 of which you also gave really high marks). At this point in the run she was easily shaping up to be my favorite character. It felt like they literally couldn't miss with a Torres episode.

I honestly think that's where a lot of my bitterness with the later seasons came in. I understand the ratings weren't high enough but they really were shaping up to have an ensemble that rivaled DS9 at this point.

Let's face it, we love the TNG crew, but the TNG ensemble left a lot to be desired. Nobody here is going to say that "Oh! It's a Crusher/LaForge/Troi episode, this is definitely going to be good!!" I love the TNG cast, but the best episodes (within reason) all feature Picard/Data.

I think literally EVERY character on DS9 has carried at least one absolute 4 star masterpiece (and several guest cast). Kim is a weak point here and Neelix/Kes are hit/miss... but if you look at the first half of the VOY run...

Janeway is amazing. She has a few inconsistencies, but this is the Janeway I love. The mother hen. The one who is a little more warm/gentle/loving than Picard but also able to kick ass like Kirk. She shines even in random single lines in episodes she's not in.

Chakotay is absolutely awesome in S2. Seska really elevates him. In S3 he's amazing in Scorpion and Unity.

Paris gets more impressive every single time he's featured, and McNeil manages to add a lot of depth to this guy. Although Paris/Kim are no O'Brien and Bashir yet... I felt like they could have become that at this point.

As for Torres... enough said above.

Tuvok is really good with everyone. I love him comforting Chakotay after Seska's betrayal. I love him with the Captain. He was awesome in Meld. I love him mentoring Kes in Cold Fire. I love him with Suder. He's a great Vulcan.

I'd talk about the Doctor, but that's pointless. I've sang his praises a dozen times before.

And even Neelix and Kes can shine when the material is there. Neelix is great in next season's Mortal Coil and Kes in this season's Before and After (sadly right before they boot her).

But mostly Chakotay, Torres, Paris and Tuvok can be so good that when they shift from a DS9 style ensemble cast to a TOS style Captain, Doc, science officer (Seven) type setup it was just disappointing. It's not that those characters can't be good... it's just that the other characters can be good too.

And what's worse, it felt like they are only allowed to have certain kind of stories after that. Torres is up, we need a Klingon/relationship with Tom story. Gone is Torres the brilliant engineer from Parallax, Prototype and Dreadnought. And a story like this? She'd never have been given "Remember" in later seasons.

It's been nice reading your reviews of S1-S3 though, because it's reminding me of all the things that made me fall in love with early VOY.
Yanks
Thu, Aug 13, 2015, 11:17am (UTC -5)
Robert,

I think I'm in lock-step with every thing you posted here.

I will add, I don't think it's fair to compare DS9 and Voyager ratings. DS9 was syndicated and Voy was not.
Robert
Thu, Aug 13, 2015, 11:40am (UTC -5)
I wasn't comparing ratings. When I said the ratings "weren't acceptable" I meant to the UPN brass. I thought the ratings were just fine for the third Star Trek show in 9 years.
partypie
Sat, Oct 10, 2015, 2:06pm (UTC -5)
Good acting but I am really not a fan of the episodes where a character lives another life. I'm in the minority but I wasn't a fan of the 'Inner Light' either. Doesn't make them bad episodes but they simply aren't things I enjoy watching. I always skip this one.
Andrew
Thu, Oct 29, 2015, 1:22am (UTC -5)
A strong episode although not quite one of the best; the parallels with "Violations" were clear but not bothersome (OK if not interesting to make the audience suspicious and then reveal a different kind of villainy-story) but I did dislike how Torres suddenly, pretty inexplicably knew the memories were Jora's. Janeway seemed a little too inflexible in the end, especially after the previous episode, and it would have been nice to see Chakotay's perspective but Torres's challenge and the resolution in the last scene were great.
Philomena
Sat, Nov 14, 2015, 7:51am (UTC -5)
"Ineffably boring" and "FAIL" better describe Michael's comments than this episode.
Shannon
Sat, Nov 28, 2015, 11:34pm (UTC -5)
Absolutely brilliant episode, 4 stars all the way! Voyager was at its best when great writing, directing, and acting all came together to, as Patrick Stewart always used to say, "tell a good story". Roxanne Dawson is amazing, and I only wish the writers could have found more ways to show her amazing range of acting.
JC
Sat, Dec 19, 2015, 2:30am (UTC -5)
Not a bad standalone ep. It was nice to see this side of B'elanna where she isn't in battle ready mode. Even if the memories belonged to someone else. When it first aired I was amazed at her tenderness in it. A word I never ascribed to our resident Klingon.

Watch her Klingon half in Faces then watch this. The dichotomous reactions to her situations in the respective episodes is incredible. All from the same person. 3 different personalities if you will. Kudos and a half to Mrs Dawson!

Yet I came to expect the Klingon side to surface on a regular basis with her. So this episode remains a pleasant surprise even after all these years.

It really doesn't involve her directly; she was the stand-in for someone else's past life so I don't really see the point in mentioning it with her usual inner struggle.

It fits in more with atrocities committed in the past and the present day people trying to bury it. Real life parallels were bound to be drawn. Too many to really get into. But I believe the emotional payload was enough to put this one at the top as one of the better offerings of S3.

3.5 stars.
Dave
Fri, Jan 1, 2016, 1:50am (UTC -5)
I've been watching through all of these episodes and then reading these reviews and all the comments as I go. I hardly ever comment. But I had to mention that the comparison to the Israel/Palestine conflict is absurd. The palestinians are not conducting public executions of Israelis in the streets. Their attacks are much more lone bomber or genocidal stabber and much less public executions. The holocaust metaphor is much more obvious here.

But I have to wonder, if the Regressives were all killed, where did these Fima Colonists come from? I assumed throughout the entire episode that the new home they kept mentioning was Fima Colony. Or did they create two colonies and kill off one of them? In that case, why would they go to all that trouble of starting a second colony? It all lends too much credency to the theory that these memories aren't 100% accurate after all.

I actually felt a sense of solidarity with the majority in this episode when they mentioned plague. Certainly, this episode was written a decade or more before the anti-vaccine crazies began their nonsense. But it seems as though the Regressives were of the same sort of health crisis nut jobs. Granted, one wouldn't support or accept the idea of killing off anyone who won't properly vaccinate their children. But I could certainly see the benefits of separating them from the general population. Why should my kid die of smallpox just because you don't trust needles?

But I also found it fascinating that this episode's villains were the ones trumpeting progress and science over the more traditionalist ideology of the Regressives. Typically in Star Trek, we see science and atheism as the ultimate good. The villains tend to be the folks who want to destroy the drumbeat of social and technological progress with their voodoo and silly appeals to faith. So it was interesting to see the opposite mistake being made here.

I'm also with the commenter who wondered whether or not a society of telepaths could commit a massive conspiracy and bury it for all these years. We understand that the Enarans consider telepathy to almost like nudity... never to be entered into unless both parties are willing. But we also know based on B'Elanna's experiences that one can receive experiences without their consent. So doesn't it stand to reason that at least a few of the Regressives would have cried out in pain in their final moments and implanted their experiences into a telepathic witness or two?

Again... this all continues to add credency to the idea that nothing in this story is really that accurate. My perspective is that there were hints of truth in the memories, warped by the passage of time and the weakening of a dying mind to create a story that accurately reflected Mirell's feelings... but possibly not her true experiences.

Still, the whole experience was enjoyable to watch primarily due to the amazing acting by Roxann Dawson.

Huh. I broke my habit of silence to make a simple comment or two and ended up writing a novel. Guess it's back in my hobbit hole until the next time. :)
Diamond Dave
Tue, Jan 26, 2016, 4:09pm (UTC -5)
This one didn't connect with me at all. Indeed I found the allegorical element to be heavy handed and overbearing, and the delivery slow. There are some strong performances here, but not enough to save it.

I don't really understand why B'Elanna had to act as a conduit for the memories either. If she is able to pass them on and another Enaran know them as truth - why couldn't Jora just do that herself? Still, then we'd have no story at all. 2 stars.
Greattrekker
Mon, Mar 7, 2016, 9:11pm (UTC -5)
Re watching things give you a lot of appreciation for how Star Trek was spot on timeless issues. People 3-4 years ago, were writing reviews on why they just can't connect with the story or how a group of people could be so dense and in denial over what they were doing or how bigoted and genocidal their actions were.

This year 2016, in the US, I think I understand how a society can get that far off track. I know a lot of people that support Donald Trump and they will not listen to reason or even consider the ramifications of what is being advocated or supported. These people are not racist, bigots, or genocidal madmen, but they soak in the message of "progress" and "change" like they were in the desert for weeks and just got their first drink of water.

We're not that far off from being like these people if given the wrong incentives.
Yanks
Wed, Mar 9, 2016, 11:19am (UTC -5)
Greattrekker,

Now we know how Obama got elected. simply put, a lot of people are tired of the status quo politicians. They are tired of electing folks to do something and they do nothing. They are tired of the only answer being to tax more and spend more and erode our constitutional rights.

You can blame Trump and his supporters on one thing. Obama, and a completely partisan law named the ACA. It resulted in record turnover in the House and Senate.

Maybe instead of labeling folks "dense" you should understand what their issues are and what caused them.

Maybe congress should listen to and represent "We the People" instead if ignoring them, catering to the lobbyists and being fascist.

While I'm not a "Trump guy", I completely understand what is happening. Folks are tired of the same old crap... and the louder the "attackers" get, the louder the folks are going to respond.

"bigoted and genocidal"? - Trump has been misquoted more than anyone in politics in well ... forever.

How are these "extreme"?

- Build a wall and control ILLEGAL immigration and drugs. (note that word in caps that you will never hear Hillary or Bernie say)

- Improve trade and tax law so companies don't need to move out of the country. Bring manufacturing jobs back to the US.

- Take better care of our veterans.

Can he get it done? Who knows, but the folks are convinced he has a better shot that a career politician and they don't feel they are being lied to.

We elected an uncompromising, executive order milling machine, Israel hating, Iran loving, Muslim Brotherhood supporting, race-baiter with no executive experience because he was well spoken, good looking and black... so can it really get any worse? At least Trump has executive experience and if elected 2/3's of congress is going to hate him so it's not going to be like it was when Obama was elected and everyone kissed his feet. (majority in both the House & the Senate)

Hillary had 22 TOP SECRET emails on her personal server... and the FBI is still doing what? Ask anyone that has ever been responsible for classified info from the military or government service what would have already happened to them had their last name not been Clinton. How the fuck can she be running for POTUS?

Bernie said their are 29 million Americans without health insurance during the last debate... why isn't that all over the news? How many were there before the ACA? How is it possible that anyone is not or under insured? Why are there dozens of waivers from the ACA? Why isn't the law completely implemented yet?

The people are tired of being lied to during election campaigns and ignored the rest of the time. They are tired of the media setting the agenda instead of reporting on it. Maybe the holier than thou fascists should be less "dense" and pay attention.
Es
Wed, Mar 9, 2016, 10:52pm (UTC -5)
There are very, very few people that I'd outright call a fake(troll), but yanks is right up there.

He is the epitome of how the insane have been able to find echo chambers, so that their insanity is normalized in their mind...that is, IF he is for real.

Don't worry though, he has some token gay friends! Sounds legit!
Robert
Thu, Mar 10, 2016, 6:26am (UTC -5)
Yanks and I get along well when talking Star Trek, and aside from finishing a really old conversation on this site I'm keeping politics off here this year. That said I think it's an awesome example of IDIC that we all had some great conversations about Trek even though things went off the rails in politics land.

I disagree with Yanks post above but honestly the only part that really is off the rails to me is the caricature of Obama and Clinton. But I have to step back and assume I'd probably have similarly awful things to say about Cruz if I really let loose.

Go ahead, let Yanks have it for a good portion of that post, it's not even hard to pick apart a few bits of that. But Yanks is not the resident troll here (and actually I would classify his views as on the moderate end of conservative from what I've gathered).

And one thing in Trump's favor. If Trump is what scares you the most in this election you aren't paying enough attention to the other guys. He's louder, but he's not scarier.
Chrome
Thu, Mar 10, 2016, 11:01am (UTC -5)
US Politics in my Star Trek boards???

Anyway, this was a decent if not great episode; Roxann Dawson is good as B'Elanna and the story was intriguing even though it wasn't action packed. While the message was a little heavy handed there is nothing wrong with being critical of such behaviour. The way the story ended with B'Elanna passing on the memories was pretty good; better than having what she said believed without question.
Robert
Thu, Mar 10, 2016, 11:09am (UTC -5)
@Chrome - Totally agree!! If we're going to ruin a board with political trash talk, let's pick a crappier episode :P
Ruth
Tue, Apr 19, 2016, 6:30pm (UTC -5)
Andrew - she knew because of the scar. It was highlighted to the viewer in several scenes and Torres had been working closely with her. She recieved the wound that left that scar just as she woke up
belowzero
Sun, Jun 19, 2016, 3:20pm (UTC -5)
Belanna Torres Episodes are pretty fine episodes to watch. I just like Dawson play the part. I wished they would have used her more often.
mephyve
Sat, Aug 20, 2016, 6:19pm (UTC -5)
boring

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