Star Trek: Voyager

"Prey"

***1/2

Air date: 2/18/1998
Written by Brannon Braga
Directed by Allan Eastman

Review by Jamahl Epsicokhan

"I believe you are punishing me because I do not think the way you do—because I am not becoming more like you. You claim to respect my individuality, but, in fact, you are frightened by it."
"As you were."

— Seven and Janeway

Nutshell: I do believe we have a winner.

Before I begin, I have two sidebar comments to make:

First, given the two episodes previous to "Prey," I had become very worried about the notion of creating an "arc" around the Hirogen. The Hirogen we had met in "Hunters" were utter cardboard and terribly acted, with completely unconvincing and unnecessary shouting and grunting. Although I still have some serious reservations about the Hirogen (and I severely doubt they'll ever be truly interesting), "Prey" was a turn for the better—much better, in fact. The Hirogen here aren't played anywhere near as over the top as the two Hirogen in "Hunters." From the moment "Prey" begins, there's almost a sense that the writers or director or somebody made a conscious effort to tone down the Hirogen to something that's ... well, watchable.

Second, I'd like to point out that this isn't really an "arc" the way DS9's "lost the station" arc was. "Message in a Bottle's" plot line really had nothing to do with "Hunters's" Hirogen plot line which really has nothing to do with "Prey." The only common element are the Hirogen themselves, with which Voyager has never twice come in contact with the same individuals. And the only two reasons I even expect to see the Hirogen return is because (1) I've seen the press releases, and (2) every episode ends with a captain's log where Janeway says something to the effect of "I don't think we've seen the last of them." There's really no dramatic connection, which is kind of unfortunate.

But never mind. I don't mean to start things off on a sour note, because "Prey" is, in fact, the best thing Voyager has done all season. I'd easily rank this in the series' top ten. This is a solidly constructed, very focused story that transcends the lightweight nature typical of season four by addressing a moral issue and framing it in the context of a punchy action/adventure premise.

We have more Hirogen, of course, but this time they're part of a much more probing story—and the key Hirogen character is played by someone who can actually act (fathom that!): Tony Todd. (DS9 viewers will recognize the deep, raspy voice from his appearances as old Jake Sisko in "The Visitor" and Worf's brother Kurn in "Sons of Mogh.")

The opening is atmospheric and effective, focusing completely on the Hirogen and the hunt for their latest prey, which happens to be one of Species 8472, left behind in our galaxy after the skirmish with the Borg. The two Hirogen hunt the 8472, shoot it, think they have killed it, then transport it onto their vessel. They're wrong, of course, and it tears up their ship and attacks them, killing one and severely wounding the other.

Enter the starship Voyager, who happens upon the wounded Hirogen's ship and beams him aboard for medical treatment, after a strong voice of skepticism from Seven of Nine. Janeway attempts to negotiate with the lone Hirogen, with some limited success.

Meanwhile, 8472 breaks into the ship from an access port (there's a particularly nice setup visual that shows 8472 walking along the outside hull of the ship). As 8472 begins causing havoc on Voyager, Janeway finds herself making a weighty decision concerning the Hirogen, who wants to continue the hunt for his latest "prey." When the 8472 takes over a deck of the ship and disables life support and artificial gravity, Janeway grants the Hirogen to accompany a team in finding the dangerous alien. But she doesn't want it harmed; she wants to make a peaceful negotiation.

Does this sound particularly interesting? Probably not, because it's hard to do justice to the finer points of the plot flow. But much of "Prey" is a very pleasant surprise, particularly once the 8472 alien is cornered with nowhere to run.

From a technical standpoint, this episode is probably one of the most engaging action pieces since "Scorpion II." The special effects are convincing and appropriately utilized. The use of environmental suits and magnetic boots (a la First Contact) made for a believable situation of suspense. I'm not sure exactly why, but something about the crew's search for the 8472—perhaps the sense of understated urgency in Allan Eastman's directing and the cast's acting, or perhaps the low lighting combined with the "zero gravity" effect—made the scenes build with much more realism, drawing me into them more than usual.

What proves more interesting is the heart of the show concerning the moral dilemma. Should Janeway risk making enemies with another race by saving the innocent 8472, therefore denying the Hirogen their greatly desired prey? Or should she hand the dangerous creature over to the Hirogen reinforcements so that they'll leave Voyager alone instead of coming in with phasers firing?

Well, this is Star Trek; what do you think?

Like many of Janeway's decisions, her decision in "Prey" is one that looks out for human sensibilities. But, at the same time, it also puts Voyager and its crew at the significant risk of being hunted down and destroyed by angry Hirogen—and I'm sure there's a part of everybody that wouldn't mind seeing the dreaded 8472 taken away if it meant their own safety. But this would of course not be a moral course of action, especially considering the creature's motives as conveyed telepathically to Tuvok: that it just wants to be left alone and returned to its realm. Janeway intends to do just that, even if it means angering a pack of aggressive hunters.

Not surprisingly, but very appropriately, this is where Seven of Nine comes into play. "Prey" features the long-awaited and, in retrospect, inevitable culmination of Seven's differing attitudes and actions as compared to Janeway's. As I said back in "Message in a Bottle," the kind of assertive, dangerous impulse that Seven is capable of is not something that Janeway can simply allow to happen week after week. There's a point where the line has to be drawn, and that line is drawn in the latter stages of "Prey," when Janeway requests that Seven (who would be able to quickly perform the necessary task) open a quantum singularity to 8472's realm—a request Seven adamantly refuses.

There's a dialog scene that I believe will go down as one of the highlights of the season because it's so well acted. There's energy and frustration boiling in this scene, but it boils just under the surface as the characters wrestle their contrasting points of view into the open. Janeway wants Seven to see this as a chance to reach out with compassion to a helpless being—a chance for Seven to grow and understand the reasons and origins of human values. Seven, still looking at the situation through primarily Borg eyes, thinks it is a tactical risk; she believes the 8472 forfeited its rights when it selfishly put the ship in danger to save itself from the Hirogen.

Janeway's frustration is perfectly conveyed through Mulgrew's performance. Meanwhile, I'd like to go on record saying I think anyone who still believes Jeri Ryan is merely eye candy after witnessing the dynamics of this scene is just fundamentally biased against the character, because the performance here is something I think is worth a lot of praise. It's hard to convincingly convey anger through the Borg-like dispassion with which Seven's character has been drawn, but Ryan pulls it off here, and the whole scene comes together. I can't remember the last time Voyager had me on the edge of my seat over a dialog scene, but this one accomplished just that; it's the best-conceived scene of conflicting attitudes since Janeway and Chakotay's "scorpion" argument in the first part of "Scorpion." I really like this stuff.

There's a lot of substance here, because it gets to the heart of the agenda Janeway has been battling for ever since Seven came aboard: a maternal figure trying to bring someone else into her "family." It's a battle Janeway isn't winning, and you can see how frustrated it's making her. She probably wouldn't have been forced to take the disciplinary actions she ends up taking under "Prey's" circumstances, but the emotional side of it I'm sure has been taking its toll for the months that Seven has been rubbing people the wrong way and disregarding protocol.

In a sense, the family idea echoes elements of how the Starfleet/Maquis alliance used to be before it was unsatisfactorily swept under the carpet. But with Seven the questions are a little easier to deal with because she simply doesn't understand human behavior.

Still, this wouldn't have worked nearly as well as it ultimately does if there hadn't been some real consequences resulting from it. Immediately after the dialog scene, my one fear was that the rift that had become evident would be reversed by some sort of redemption on Seven's part—some redemption that would've made Seven see Janeway's side of the story. Fortunately, this didn't happen. Instead, the opposite happened when Seven made the split-second decision to beam the 8472 and the hunter onto a Hirogen ship in the middle of a battle situation running out of control.

It's hardly a neat or tidy solution for Janeway, who watches a moral decision countermanded (effectively sending an innocent being to its death). But she can't judge the individual who violated her order the way she could any other crew member. It provides Janeway with a true challenge. Just how should she deal with Seven as an individual under such bizarre circumstances? Since Seven doesn't yet understand her own individuality, how accountable can she be for it?

I also think the final dialog exchange served to strengthen the ending. As much as I understood Janeway's point of view and the necessary ramifications imposed (barring Seven from computer access) as a result of Seven's behavior, I had a feeling that this was turning into another "Janeway is right" ending. But "Prey" avoids this possibility by adding a little ambivalence, as Seven announces her belief that Janeway is punishing her because she is not evolving into what Janeway had hoped—and that her individuality, in fact, frightens the captain. It's an interesting and challenging way to end the episode, and it doesn't have an easy answer—partly because, in some ways, Seven is quite correct (especially considering it was Janeway who imposed this individuality upon Seven in the first place). As many undoubtedly know, I like questions that don't have easy answers.

Pretty much everything about "Prey" worked quite well. Even the Hirogen—despite the fact that Tony Todd's character was still a sketchy, half-defined personality—seemed more fleshed-out and believable. Chakotay's briefing about their entire society being "based on the hunt" may not make the Hirogen more interesting or deeper than any other member of the Stock Delta Quadrant Alien Club [TM], but it did manage to make their motivation seem a little more focused and a little less dramatically shoddy. But even though the Hirogen worked surprisingly well this time around, I still say forget them, because that's not where the gold is. The gold, like last time, is within analyzing the behavior of the regular characters.

But if Voyager can use adventure-oriented premises as effectively and with as much panache as "Prey" does, I certainly won't complain.

Next week: Seven of Nine seeks justice in "Retrospect."

Previous episode: Hunters
Next episode: Retrospect

◄ Season Index

48 comments on this review

Ken Egervari
Tue, Dec 1, 2009, 2:01pm (UTC -6)
I Agree with everything in the review.

I also want to comment on Tom Paris - he was great in this episode! The way he has a weapon, but doesn't really know what the hell to do with it, and his expression when Tuvok comes to the rescue.

I was thinking at first... "Why is tom paris going?" And then the writers make Tom act the way he should. I mean, seriously... how many times do you see Tom firing his phaser and stuff? Like never.

Lastly, he has the funniest line in the entire season. The hirogen brags that "I once tracked a silicon-based lifeform through a neutronium mantle of a collapsed star."

And then Tom responds - with the best expression ever - "I once tracked a mouse through Jeffrey Tube 32."

LOL. Best line in the entire episode. The expression on his eyes and just coming out of the blue is so priceless. I laughed so hard.
John Pate
Sat, Feb 6, 2010, 7:01am (UTC -6)
Although I enjoyed the ep, I didn't grok Janeway's reasoning - other than simply as a way to have a confrontation between her and Seven. Seven was so clearly correct, versus Janeway's bizarre stance, in the context of what the knew about the capabilities of the combatants and the situation.

I feel the writers could have come up with a more reasonable basis for a fifty-fifty judgment call leading to a disagreement between the two where Seven should clearly have deferred to Janeway's command authority.
Nic
Thu, Jul 7, 2011, 9:48am (UTC -6)
Great review Jammer. Nice to see such positive comments about Voyager for once. I still think "Nemesis" is superior but this was without a doubt one of the best episodes of the season. It had great character interaction and un unexpectedly dark ending for a Star Trek episode, yet still remained true to the spirit of Star Trek. I agree 100% with Janeway's decision, but Seven did also raise some interesting points. This being may have been responsible for many deaths, but does that make it any less humane to sacrifice it to save ourselvesS? I'm still pondering it.

The only thing that irked me on first viewing was Tuvok's sudden onset of telepathic abilities. Vulcans had never before shown the ability to communicate in this manner without a mind meld. It made Kes' absence all the more noticeable (I still think it would have been better to 'demote' her to a recurring character).
Nic
Thu, Jul 7, 2011, 9:50am (UTC -6)
Oh, and what a great shot of 8472 walking along Voyager's hull. It's probably one of my favorite shots of the series.
V
Thu, Jan 26, 2012, 5:23pm (UTC -6)
@nic vulcans are telepathic. Limited but they still are. See "random thoughts" episode and T'Pol's explanation when they dealt with the Andorian's "telepathic cousins".

Very good episode and i agree with both janeway and seven. I agree more with janeway and honestly 100% agree if i was in the delta quadrant. Sometimes i have to remind myself that the ST universe, the culture is the idealistic notions of today become reality. ST people are on more naive, trusting, and good side than us -from that point of view, you can understand where Janeway is coming from.
Rosario
Tue, Mar 6, 2012, 4:25pm (UTC -6)
You sell Seven short in your review. You say she can't be held accountable because she doesn't know what her individuality is yet. Yet, here she is before you loudly asserting her individuality. Similar to Picard once saying, "Our mission is to seek out new life, well There He Sits!" You clearly have your own moral compass that lets you choose your preference but that doesn't give you any cause to be dismissing differing views out of hand.

Seven's tactical assessment is 100% correct and she saved Voyager this episode - Janeway's kurt dismissal of this assertion doesn't make it any less true. I am just so glad that there is a character on Star Trek that finally understands reality. Not everyone thinks the same way. Not everyone has the same value system. Not everyone has the same moral code.

The "fiction" part of Star Trek in almost all cases is that our intrepid crew keeps surviving. They would be dead time and time again if they existed in reality. "Ah, a new species, Captain. Shall we raise shields?" "No, Number One, we don't want them to get the wrong impression." NO, NO, NO. Shields UP! Any species that gets miffed at your raised shields is probably just picking a fight. Err on the side of caution - don't bare your chest to the knife and hope for an equal dose of compassion in return.
Chris
Sat, Apr 7, 2012, 4:23pm (UTC -6)
I think Tony Todd as the Hirogen character was the best guest star so far in the first 4 VOY seasons. Nice acting and his deep voice matched perfectly with his merciless attitude.

Tony Todd played a role as a badass terrorist in The Rock movie (Sean Connery, Nicolas Cage) delivering some funny lines.

Great episode, 4 stars!
Justin
Wed, Apr 18, 2012, 2:54am (UTC -6)
Despite my overall dislike of the Hirogen, this episode is indeed a winner. It was also Tony Todd's last ever appearance on a Star Trek show and, as usual, he knocked it out of the park. He really is a terrific actor and I don't think it's a coincidence that pretty much all of his Trek appearances were in classic episodes. He brought something as an actor every time that transformed good scripts into good shows.
Latex Zebra
Fri, Jan 18, 2013, 6:42pm (UTC -6)
Yep, not much to say other than this is good Voyager. Some great scenes that are well acted with some suspense and action thrown in. 3 1/2 is about right.
Leah
Wed, Jun 19, 2013, 3:42pm (UTC -6)
Scene of the 8472 walking on the outer hull:

"There's something on the wing..."
Jordy
Mon, Aug 19, 2013, 6:11pm (UTC -6)
I think Seven was right in this episode and I'm glad she defied Janeway. If things had gone Janeway's way, the Voyager and her crew would have been reduced to their component atoms by the Hirogen in about six seconds flat. Compassion is all very well, but doesn't Janeway have a duty to keep her ship and crew safe? Shouldn't that override her duty to help one single (and definitely not 'innocent', by the way!) alien life form? She seemed all too ready to throw the lot of them under the bus.
When Seven states that following Janeway's plan would have resulted in Voyager's certain destruction, the best response Janeway can muster is the profoundly feeble 'Maybe not.' That says it all, I think. Seven saved the ship.
Petrus
Mon, Oct 7, 2013, 8:08am (UTC -6)
Along with "Equinox," and the second half of "Year of Hell," this episode is probably the strongest example, of Janeway's trademark abuse of authority. We see it to a degree in "Spirit Folk," as well, but not quite as severely as here.

It's these episodes which really demonstrate the fact that, while Picard as a character actually went on to have a book about leadership written from his perspective, by a couple of real-life military generals, ("Make It So,") most of the time, Janeway served as an example of how any sort of leader should *not* behave.

As I've written here before, Janeway's immaturity and immorality as a leader, was by far the most negative and problematic element of Voyager as a series.
RenC
Tue, Oct 15, 2013, 4:42pm (UTC -6)
This was a fantastic episode. For me a full 4 stars. The conflict between Janeway & Seven had been brewing for a while & even so Seven's flat refusal to obey a direct order was a bold move by the writers.

As Janeway says there's a limit to individuality on a starship where there's a hierarchy. The Captain's word is law.
Granted, Seven did not choose to be on Voyager but she should be able to see how the crew works as a collective in their own way to keep the ship & each other alive. And on that ship Janeway is Queen of the Hive.

I see Janeway as trying give Seven a moral compass where she previously had none. Her decision to protect the 8472 despite the species' previous encounters is quite typical of Star Trek. Take for example Picard's decision to protect Q when he was turned mortal by the Continuum & then hunted down by a species he had tormented & who wanted revenge. Picard risked his ship then to save Q.

8472 effectively requested asylum & Janeway granted it. While 8472 would never sacrifice itself to protect the human crew as Q did on that episode of TNG, that doesn't make Janeway's decision any different from Picard's.

Consider also that 1 member of the race cannot be held responsible for the actions of the species as a whole. That particular 8472 was a soldier in a war. (A war which the Borg started in fact & which Seven conveniently ignores when talking about the millions of Borg that were destroyed.)
Now the war is over & it just wants to get back home.

Janeway has made it clear that even though her top priority is to get her crew home, she will still uphold the principles of the Federation. And to me it wouldn't be Star Trek without this.


Caine
Mon, Nov 11, 2013, 10:01am (UTC -6)
To me, this show is an ecxellent example of Star Trek when it works best - i.e. putting the spotlight on a very interesting dilemma without "handing" us a solution. I love that stuff!

On one hand, 7 of 9 is - obviously - in the right: refusing to hand over the "prey" to the Hirogen puts Voyager at high risk ... as it turns ou at SUCH high risk that she would probably have been detsroyed had 7 of 9 not disobeyed the Captain's orders.

On the other hand Janeway is taking a stand for the morally right thing to do.

Now, some of the comments above point out that Janeway is moraaly in the wrong here, because she needlessly endangeres the ship and the crew.
I, however, would argue that Janeway is doing exactly what she and her fellow Starfleet officers have been trained to do: to protect the weak and defenseless from the violent "bully", no matter the personal cost.
As RenC pointed out in the post above this one, Picard has done it before with Q ... in fact we've seen him do it time and again in TNG.

The Starfleet officers are eesentially saying "we do not bow for bullies - you may be able to destroy us, but we will keep doing the RIGHT thing ... you will NOT dictate our actions!"

You might argue that this is stupid, because it'll end up getting you killed. On the other hand you might argue that this is the only right way to act if you want to gain any respect from other species around the galaxy in the long run.

Is it realistic? Well, I don't think I would personally have the courage to stand up for what I think is right in the face of nearly cetain destruction - but then again, I'm not a Starfleet officer, and I didn't sign up to serve on a tarship encountering dozens of species in vast, cold space.

7 of 9's position on all of this is pragmatic. Janeway's position is idealistic. Neither of those views are necessarily wrong - but from previous experience (i.e. many episodes in the past)we know exactly which position Star Trek takes!

The really great thing abput this particular episode - to me, anyway - is that it DOESN'T say that Jabeway is right and 7 of 9 is wrong! This wouls normally be the Lesson of the Day (tm) from an episode like this, but not here - this episode lets the question linger in the air.

In my own personal oppinion Janeway was in the right - but I understand how others think that 7 of 9 was in the right.
What I DON'T understand is how some people can write off Janeway's view as stupid or even immoral, when she is taking the Classic Star Trek Captain Stance (tm) here.
Susan
Mon, Nov 11, 2013, 5:31pm (UTC -6)
There's compassion, but then there's just stupidity. I really DO like the Captain Janeway character, but I so didn't agree with her in this episode. If she'd had her way and they had tried to send the alien back there's NO DOUBT Voyager would have been destroyed and probably even before they could have sent it back. She was making a choice, she was trading the life of everyone on the ship for the life of that alien. Compassion would have been to RISK the ship and crew for the alien, not TRADE it. I can't stand it when people I admire in a show do ignorant things like that, hopefully she'll redeem herself for me in the next few episodes, if not I don't think I can continue watching a ship with a captain who just doesn't give a damn about the crew and would trade it for any stupid alien that came along.
Chris P
Fri, Jan 31, 2014, 1:07pm (UTC -6)
If ever there was a time to mutiny it might be after the events in this episode. Janeway has put her crew in extreme peril numerous times now for flimsy reasons varying from "I want to get a closer reading" to "Hopefully the six warships that have us dead in the water won't kill us". In a recent episode she was going to let B'Elanna be lobotomized for no reason.

Frankly it's difficult to keep watching this show when the captain of the crew is religiously naive and careless with her crew's lives.

This was a good episode but for the fact that Seven alone stood up and protested Janeway's willingness to sacrifice all of their lives for an aggressive creature that had put them in danger and assaulted her crew even though it was clearly capable of communicating with them and *asking* for help. For me that is a major oversight by the writers. As usual.

I may not continue with this show after this episode, as I'm simply not enjoying the contrived way these plots come about. The writing quality is inferior to that which you can find in good fan fiction and I suspect that the writers attained their positions through some combination of political/social favor or because of lazy producers giving jobs to marginal talent within rather than seeking talented outsiders. Just way too many plot holes and way too many scenes that only work if the characters act illogically.
Susan
Sun, Feb 9, 2014, 10:16pm (UTC -6)
Quote - Chris P. Frankly it's difficult to keep watching this show when the captain of the crew is religiously naive and careless with her crew's lives. End Quote

Exactly. I've continued watching, but it was only after a friend of mine said "Didnt you see the episode where they went through an anamoly and it made nearly everyone on the ship brain damaged and backward? You know the one where the Captain loses everything BUT her Liberalness and now just a few non damaged characters have to do their best to keep the ship running from the posts they have?" I said "No, I missed that one." He said "yeah I did too, but it explains pretty much everything doesn't it?" lol. So now, when I watch it, it's more like 'Die Hard' (or 'Die Borg' lol), Seven of Nine is Bruce Willis, and Captain Janeway and most of the rest (not the doctor) are the evil foreigners.

Seriously though, 7 just saved their butts and Janeway is like "Can we pursue?" Can we pursue??? I mean really! Come on. How utterly idiotic. What did she think they were going to do if they DID manage to catch up? "Excuse me, give us your prey back, or I'll blow up my own ship!" What an idiot.
Susan
Sun, Feb 9, 2014, 10:21pm (UTC -6)
It's not a bad show, it just makes some really ignorant non-points sometimes - pepsiadikt
Ric
Wed, Apr 16, 2014, 2:01am (UTC -6)
I can't help but keep saying: it is impossible to keep swallowing how easy it is for someone to escape security measures. To overcome security officers at the sickbay, to by-pass command codes. To beam people without authorization. The lazy writing is extreme. Btw it is funny that Jammer did usually excuse these things more than he did the losses of shuttlecrafts.

That said, of course it was a good episode. Mostly by the fact that we start seeing continuity regarding the development of Seven's character. And finally we see some consequences for her wild actions. The last scenes and the dialogues between her and the captain were a joy to watch.

John TY
Thu, Aug 28, 2014, 11:47am (UTC -6)
Good episode, some meaty questions to ponder.

But I do have some issue with the resolution of the plot. Having Seven countermand Janeway's orders robs us of seeing how Janeway ultimately deals with the impossible decision she faces. I think it would have been good to see Janeway either relent on her moral stance for the good of her crew or deal with the consequences of doing the 'right thing'.

Also, the episode makes Janeway out to be totally adamant, seeing the situation as completely black and white, thinking that her decision is the only right way. Now I'm NOT saying her decision is wrong by any means but I think she should have shown some sign of the pain that decision would cause a Captain. Just because she believed her decision was the moral one doesn't mean she wouldn't have wept blood at the knowledge that the likely result was the capture or destruction of her ship and crew.

It reaffirms unfair stereotypes that having ideals and taking a moral standpoint is naïve and ultimately dumb by portraying Janeway as indifferent to the likely consequences of her actions.
Vylora
Fri, Aug 29, 2014, 11:26pm (UTC -6)
This episode as a whole is a definite step up from the previous one, but not without some balancing issues. Notably the Janeway/Seven scenario. Janeway was very much correct in that the humane thing to do was to try and get the injured Undine back home. Seven was also very much correct that the lives of the crew were of paramount importance if the Hirogen were to attack.

Fortunately, the writers chose the lesser-expected route of having Seven countermand the captain in having the aliens involved beamed away mid-battle rather than opening the rift. Unfortunately, though, instead of making it a grey-area decision; the plot followed along in a black and white matter. Where Seven was 100% correct and made Janeway look 100% foolish to the viewer (even though, technically, she was just as right). Now I understand it was just a series of events, and that, decisions such as those can lead to any possibility based on any given situation in life. I just don't know if the end result was purposely intended this way by the writers or if they didn't fully think it through. At the end of the day, it really does make it look like Seven was absolutely right and Janeway was, not only absolutely wrong, but stubbornly naive. Even though she wasn't. *sigh*

This makes it all the more frustrating for me, because, in retrospect, it almost seems as a major demerit from an otherwise great episode. It does seem like the writers fucked up again. Or maybe they didn't. Maybe they really DID want Seven to win the argument and save the day. And maybe the captain WAS correct, just the circumstances didn't allow her to be.

3.5 stars.

HolographicAndrew
Thu, Sep 18, 2014, 11:33pm (UTC -6)
I was really surprised in this episode by how easy going Janeway was on Seven. When Tuvok disobeyed orders in an earlier episode to protect the crew she gave him a verbal beat down. Taking away her access to the ship should already be a given in this situation. Seven didn't even get sent to the brig.
Name is irrelevant
Sat, Sep 27, 2014, 6:54am (UTC -6)
Everyone is saying that 7 was right. Well she wasn't, you don't just throw someone who is not an enemy to the wolves. Especially when they could have been a very powerful ally.

There are always infinite other possibilities for endings, this one sucked, 1 possible ending would be for the 'prey' to go through the singularity and then come back with a bunch of ships and annihilate the Hirogen hunters.

And why didn't the doctor stop her.
And why didn't Janeway throw 7 in the brig.
And again, why didn't Janeway throw 7 in the brig.

Janeway is a stupid arrogant hypocrite.

Janeway saw the Hirogen as a potential ally but not the 'prey', why?
Yanks
Sat, Sep 27, 2014, 10:06am (UTC -6)
It's not about making a powerful ally. It's about not provoking an enemy. Janeway was trying to give species 8472 an olive branch.

Justice is not blind either.
Xylar
Sat, Apr 11, 2015, 8:04pm (UTC -6)
I'm with Seven on this one, for the simple fact that she is correct that Species 8472 gave up any rights it may have had when it forcefully invaded their ship, tampered with their systems and attacked 4 members of their crew.
I understand that is a creature that had been hunted mercilessly, but if one can not act with compassion one should not expect to receive any in return either. It acted in its own best interest and in doing so it put Voyager and its crew at risk.

Seven was in the right here. There's no doubt about it, in my mind.
Darknet
Mon, Jun 22, 2015, 8:59pm (UTC -6)
Was I the only one disappointed that Tuvok did not echo Seven's stance on the issue. Janeway's decision was illogical to say the least. The needs of the many out-weigh the needs of the few. Tuvok should have been right by Seven in his view. Of course in the end, I would expect him to follow orders.
John C. Worsley
Wed, Oct 14, 2015, 12:33pm (UTC -6)
The only reason the 8472 was in the galaxy was to purge it of all life.

Engines crippled, shields on the brink of failing, outgunned 6-to-1, Janeway had no plan and no chance other than waiting for another Deus Ex from the screenwriters.

I like the essential concept of what they were going for here but it was badly mishandled in the execution. Seven saved the ship. The end.
Yanks
Thu, Oct 15, 2015, 12:34pm (UTC -6)
John C ....

"The only reason the 8472 was in the galaxy was to purge it of all life."

Don't agree with this.

Species 8472 is in the galaxy because the Borg attacked them in theirs.
navamske
Wed, Oct 28, 2015, 8:26pm (UTC -6)
One of the drawbacks of having myriad opportunities to rewatch episodes of a show multiple times (via DVDs, Netflix, iTunes, etc.) is that on repeated viewings you start to notice things you're probably not supposed to notice. Like when Chakotay is on camera listening to Tuvok's report about the possible intruder and how evidence suggests (paraphrasing) "it might be Species 8472." Chakotay is figuratively on the edge of his seat until Tuvok pronounces the final digit, then bolts from his chair to do something about the situation. What did he think, that it might have been ". . . Species 8473"? Chakotay: "Whew! Dodged a bullet there!"
Grumpy
Wed, Oct 28, 2015, 9:34pm (UTC -6)
LOL @ 8473!
Skeptical
Mon, Nov 23, 2015, 10:31pm (UTC -6)
I feel rather chagrined; I didn't even realize that was Tony Todd. I did notice that he was a whole lot better than the two Hirogen from the previous episode, and he was certainly intimidating enough. The Hirogen were rather derivative in the last episode, but I think they're starting to become a bit more rounded. Yeah, one note culture and all that. But they're starting to sell it some more.

Meanwhile, I find it interesting to note how many commentators would throw an innocent man to the wolves in order to save themselves. Is it logical? Perhaps, in a utilitarian sense. But it certainly isn't honorable, nor is it consistent with the ideals that have been consistently shown throughout the many series. Picard wouldn't even let the Calamarain go after Q, after all. If the Hirogen boarded, held Janeway and crew at gunpoint, and grabbed 8472, that would be one thing. But to just fork him over just like that? Kirk would be ashamed...

Although it would have been nice if there was at least some possibility of Voyager fighting back. Having it be so one-sided was a bit of a copout. By now we are well aware of the artificial danger portion in the final act of any Voyager episode. If the crew had a chance to escape, or fight back, then there would be a bit more tension of wondering how this battle would end. Instead, we're simply left wondering what the shields get down to before the deus ex machina occurs.

But whatever, its a minor complaint. Regardless of whether or not it was honorable, Seven's decision was perfectly rational in her view, and I don't blame her for making it. And it brought some well-needed tension to the ship. While the Maquis never should have started a mutiny or anything silly like that, questioning Starfleet philosophy would have been a legitimate use of them. Sadly, other than Seska and the occasional whimpering from Chakotay, they never used that angle much. Seven's existence allows us to bring some of that conflict back into the show. Janeway didn't do a great job of defending herself here, but she is certainly within her rights to punish Seven for her actions. And it is certainly a delight to see some consequences for Seven's actions, even if they start to disappear quickly...

Meanwhile, the tension throughout much of the episode is real, and made for an enjoyable episode overall. In fact, it's been quite a run of good episodes of late.
John
Thu, Dec 10, 2015, 1:40am (UTC -6)
Plothole #1: Kes threw Voyager 10,000 light years away from Borg space and closer to home. How did 8472 get this far if it was a relic of the Borg war?

Plothole #2: How is it possible for Paris to track a mouse through Jeffries tube 32? How would a mouse find itself on Voyager in the delta quadrant?

Plothole #3: How did Seven beam 8472 to the Hirogen ship in the middle of a battle with either Voyager or the Hirogen ship's shields up?
45 RPM
Sat, Dec 26, 2015, 5:48am (UTC -6)
Petrus - This is the reason episodes like S1's Prime Factors make Janeway look like such a hypocrite. She came on quite strong in that one yet episodes like this one demonstrate that as a Captain its ok to break those same rules whenever they become inconvenient. And in this case it nearly got the crew killed. Once again putting another race over the safety of her own crew. Won't even get started about Equinox or Endgame.

Loved Seven's speech at the end towards Janeway after her sentence was doled out. She didn't have a choice in the collective any more than she had a choice with Voyager. But she clearly had her own mind and it was...inspiring to see her express it. All Janeway could retort with was "As you were".

Frankly they should have mutinied back in the pilot just before she destroyed the array. That's really where the bad decisions began for this crew.

This was an awesome ep regarding Species 8472. It didn't showcase them as total monsters despite their fearsome appearance. In fact, knowing they were the ones being attacked by first the Borg and now the Hirogen we can't really fault its actions. I think of poor Ripley from Aliens whenever I think of species 8472. First impressions will dictate your actions towards a race. But all this 8472 alien wanted to do was return to fluidic space.

But I still wasn't crazy about their story in S5's In the Flesh. The storyline would have been awesome if it were another species. It didn't really fit with 8472 tho.

I never really found the Hirogen to be all that interesting. No moreso than the Ka-zon. Tony Todd, however, did essay the role quite well. Still, I didn't find them to be as nearly as fascinating as their prey.

The pacing and the storyline itself were first rate in spite of Janeway's pious posturing and decisions that nearly turned the crew into flotsam. Oh yeah, and puttng the Hirogen hot on their trail. 3.5 stars is doable.
Diamond Dave
Sun, Feb 14, 2016, 9:16am (UTC -6)
Excellent intro featuring the marvelous Tony Todd, who actually serves to give the Hirogen just a little more nuance than previously. Species 8472 is always a crowd pleaser of course, and the action is just different enough (eg the suits) to make it all interesting.

But it's the conflict between Seven and Janeway that is the real highlight. It's great to see two strong characters butting heads, and the fact that Janeway doesn't win the argument through the mere force of her moral convictions but is met with a flat rejection of the idealistic approach with a flatly pragmatic one makes for a wonderful concluding scene.

Yet another good episode (The 10th 2.5 or above rated episode in a row, equaling the record for any series in my re-watch so far). 3.5 stars.
icarus32soar
Fri, Feb 19, 2016, 8:53am (UTC -6)
Totally agree with Petrus. Janeway is a disaster on legs. "Erratic, conflicted, disorganised." Ring a bell? Seven of Nine is the single best thing on Voyager, possibly in the whole of ST, no small thanx to Jeri Ryan's screen presence and natural talent for under-delivering rather than over-deliveting her lines. She is consistently pitch perfect and has an extraordinary range.
Void
Thu, Apr 7, 2016, 11:21pm (UTC -6)
I really liked this episode for the conflict between Seven and Janeway. And I think I never hated Janeway most. I rewatch Voyager for the third time or so now, and I never particularily liked Janeway, but now that I am older I really start to hate her. She is just a bully, abusing her position to impose her judgement on everyone. Seven says it best at the end. Janeway wants to form her into a carbon copy of herself, and she gets punished if she does not obey. Now, I understand that on any ship you need a clear chain of command, and in the end, the captain gives the orders. But that does not mean that the crew has to follow their captain blindly. Janeway acted in the most illogical and dangerous way, stubborn to the point of blindness. This episode could have been a great moral dilemma if the odds weren't so in favour of the hirogen. She is a bad captain because she puts her morals above anything, regardless of the circumstances. And it is not that she struggled with the decision to kill her crew (which was essentially what she was doing), she acted like a religious zealot, principle above all else. I know that it is a Star Trek motto to help those in need, but there is a point where that is just not possible without killing yourself. And in the end they still got lucky that the hirogen just turned away after they got their prey. They could just as easily have destroyed the Voyager, especially after she offended them the way she did (by stealing their prey). It is also Star Fleet custom to respect other cultures, is it not?

In this episode, and also the next, I felt really sorry for Seven. She is basically a usefull pet that gets called upon if there is a difficult problem, but if she acts human, and rational for that matter, she gets confined to the cargo bay, and is only allowed to still work the astrolab because that suits Janeways needs. She traded one oppressive regime for the next. And in real life, the crew would have mutinied, if not earlier than after this episode. Risking all their lives to save a creature that would most likely kill them if they bring it home. There is only so much a captain can demand. Look at Captain Bligh. Technically, he was right in his descisions, because it were his to make. In the same way Janeway is right here: It is her descision to kill her crew. But she can't blame the crew for disobeying such orders. I would have loved to see her replaced, even by Chakotay, who may be boring, but at least he is not clinically insane.

If Janeway listened to her peers, changed her opinion from time to time, or even admitted to making mistakes now and then, she would not be such an unlikeble character. But with her adamant irrationality and adherence to principle when it is not appropriate, she is the single most dangerous thing that the Voyager ever encountered, and is the only reason I am reluctant to watch this series again.

And to Name is irrelevant: Well, yes, you don't do that. Under normals circumstances, and when you have a fighting chance, if the odds are not impossible. When you are already disabled and outnumbered 6:1, and the only options are to either: 1) Try to save one innocent being (the odds of succeding are exceedingly rare, remember, Torres said she needed 1 or 2 hours, and Tom said he could shake the hirogens for mere minutes), 2) Save 148 innocent lives by handing over one not really innocent being , it is not such an obvious descision anymore. If Janeway acted tortured, while ordering to beam Species 8472 and the hirogen over, and lamented how that descision was the wrong one, but the only possible option in the circumstances, then yes, I could see her as right. If she just ignores the odds and acts as if she is immortal, she is just insane.
Amagnonx
Mon, Apr 18, 2016, 4:41am (UTC -6)
Janeway is incapable of viewing reality outside of her own emotional lens. While it is interesting to have such a flawed character - the writers never question her morality - it is presented as if it is somehow the 'only right way' - this is what makes it annoying. The conflict between her and Seven is an opportunity for Janeway to grow - but it is presented from a totally biased perspective - as if it were only Seven who is in need of the 'enlightened' views of Janeway - where its clear that the reverse is in fact the truth.

Janeway constantly projects human emotion and empathy onto alien races that obviously have no empathy. Her idea to 'save the alien at all costs' in this episode makes me wish Seven had quietly strangled her and the irrational magical medicine bag clutching Chakotay - their deaths would put the far more rational Tuvac in charge of the ship. He might be boring - but he is empathic and at least slightly rational.

Like the Borg, the new alien race (8472) appears to be devoid of empathy - they are a psychopathic civilization - and we should expect that this is common in the universe. The complex chemical systems that provide humans with compassion and empathy - also provide humans beings with a competitive and cooperative advantage - but are not necessary to allow civilization. An extremely brutal system of laws, combined with an hierarchical system of rule will allow a psychopathic species to achieve a highly advanced civilization. Most of the population would have to be a disarmed and subjected to virtual slavery - but those subjected to such conditions are also psychopaths - and they would never be able to organize a rebellion - more than that - they would never want to. Instead they would each simply seek to rise to a higher level in the hierarchy themselves.

The so called 'moral dilemma' is personal to Janeway - it is not a an ethical (logical) dilemma. The alien is powerful, hostile and extremely dangerous - it broke through the ships hull - they have proven weapons to use against it which can be used immediately - every second of delay increases the probability that a crew member will be killed, or that a vital system might be destroyed leading to multiple crew fatalities.

Janeway's first obligation is to her ship and crew, therefore the logical and ethical response is to deploy the only known weapon they have against the 8472 alien immediately - instead she asks Seven to start tinkering up a non lethal weapon. This is utterly reckless and vastly increases the danger to the ship and crew. This decision alone makes it clear she places her personal beliefs above the safety of the crew and the ship - if she was the only one at risk - then its fine to act that way, but she is clearly incapable of seeing things from a broader context.

The 8472 alien is powerful and telepathic, its an unknown quantity that might be able to crush Tuvac's mind like a bug at close quarters - or potentially it could disable, kill or even control crew members at range with its virtually unknown telepathic capability. Having it running around the the ship at a time they are facing multiple hostile ships is simply stupid.

The details of the the battle between the alien and hunters is initially unknown, but once more hunters are detected incoming, and the hunter they gave medical treatment makes it demands - then they should have done exactly what Seven did - return them both to the hunter ship. That's how they found them, and that fight is nothing to do with them - they owe neither of the combatants anything. They should have simply followed the Prime Directive and got out of there.

Janeway then tries to justify her actions by saying the alien might be useful as prisoner for intel. Kess had previously explained that the 8472 aliens intended to 'purge' the entire galaxy. The 8472 had also explained that they had no respect for any living creature that could not repel their attack. Not only did they have the capability of destroying entire planets - they had already destroyed several hundred worlds controlled by the Borg. Voyager had created an effective weapon - this was by pure chance - Seven was on board and had both the required technology, and the knowledge required. Supplying this weapon to the Federation should be the highest priority for the entire ship - it should be 'the' mission. While more intel and a living alien is certainly valuable - it is not worth risking the destruction of the ship. If the Federation was attacked - then it could conceivably be completely destroyed before developing that weapon independently.

When the hunters arrive and make their demands, it is like being surrounded by six armed men who say 'give us your prisoner or we shoot you in the head'. If you say no, you get shot in the head - but its not just Janeway's head on the line - an idea she seems to be unable to comprehend.

Her story about the wounded Cardasian is irrelevant - the Cardasians are empathic - to the contrary, there has been no indication that the 8472 aliens are. This is like watching a house burning down, and when its almost gone out - you see a small flame left. Do you run in and 'save' it? Carefully keep the flame 'alive' and then 'release' it into the nearby forest? Projecting the attribute of empathy onto psychopaths is identical to treating forces of nature as if they were living things - its absurd - just one more thing that both the writers and the Janeway character seem incapable of comprehending.

If they had opened a singularity to release the 8472 alien, what then - simply toss it through? It would probably be like beaming someone into deep space - a useless act. Were they going to carry it through aboard their ship, once more invading the plane of the 8472? Were they going to supply it with shuttle from their apparently infinite supply of disposable shuttles? That would provide it with intel. If they had created such a singularity - there seems to be a good chance that the 8472 on the other side would come straight back through at that point - guns blazing. Trying to send the alien 'home' would have potentially placed there entire galaxy at risk again - for the sake of preserving Janeway's conscience - let the galaxy burn, so long as Janeway feels good about herself.

There seems to have no acknowledgement by the writers that any of the rest of the crew might agree with Seven - as if she was wrong and Janeway always right.

This biased lens of 'morality' is not the hallmark of good writing - people should not be told what it right and wrong - far better to simply present it and let them decide for themselves.

Seven's observation that the hierarchical structure on the Voyager is the same kind of collectivism practiced by the Borg is accurate - however there is a veneer of individualism on the Voyager - ultimately Janeway has made it clear - she is the Tyrant of Space - and the lives and wishes of the crew have no value compared to her personal beliefs and feelings, and she will sacrifice their lives on the pyre of her vanity without hesitation - and the writers seem to endorse this as if it were ethical.
Brian
Sat, May 14, 2016, 10:58pm (UTC -6)
"As you were" in military parlance means to rescind an order. Nonmilitary it means to undo what what was just done or forget what you just saw (a real life reset button).

Hence, when Captain Janeway says this to Seven of Nine she takes back everything that she just said about Seven's "punishment". She is saying to go back to the way things were before I stepped into the cargo bay!



Yanks
Thu, May 19, 2016, 8:01am (UTC -6)
Brian,

"As you were" is a military command to withdraw an order, return to the previous position, etc. or to withdraw something just said,

"JANEWAY: Individuality has its limits, especially on a starship where there's a command structure.
SEVEN: I believe that you are punishing me because I do not think the way you do. Because I am not becoming more like you. You claim to respect my individuality, but in fact you are frightened by it.
JANEWAY: As you were."

What it means here is Seven has stepped to far in this conversation. She has gone somewhere she shouldn't and Janeway is not going to continue this debate. She has not taken back anything she said and has not rescinded anything.


Yanks
Thu, May 19, 2016, 9:36am (UTC -6)
Wow.... lot's of interesting comments on this one :-)

It seems just about everyone is hating Janeway and loving Seven.

The Captain is wrong and Seven is right.

Mom is wrong and the teenager is right.

Let's look at 7's first reaction to the situation presented in this story.

"SEVEN: The Hirogen vessel is a potential threat. We should destroy it."

Now, a vessel approached Voyager, fired nothing, has week/intermittent life signs onboard and Seven's reaction is to just frakin blow it up? .... and everyone is on Seven's side here? sure.... she's beaming with reason here.

Captain Janeway deals with this situation appropriately. ... about as "Star Fleet" as it gets. She rescues an injured Hirogen, provides medical aid. Nothing wrong there.

She figures out who this big fella is hunting... then species 8472 gets into the ship, is seen in engineering (where it doesn't kill anyone BTW).

Then she receives a demand from the Hirogen. "Let me continue the hunt or I'll kill you" .... yeah, like she's supposed to allow that.

After trying to find it, they do and the Hirogen tries to kill it, then gets stunned by Tuvok.

The Tuvok melds/read it's mind with this thing.

"TUVOK: It's ship was damaged during the conflict with the Borg. When the other members of its species retreated into fluidic space, it was left behind. It has been trapped in the Delta Quadrant ever since. Alone, pursued by Hirogen hunting parties. It has no desire for further conflict. It only wants to return to its domain. It is dying, Captain."

So our Captain is proven right once again. This actually makes TOTAL sense. 8472 wasn't their enemy, the "provoke a fight" borg were. They were just thrust into that situation. This is a perfect opportunity to hand species 8472 an olive branch. Oh that's right, the Hirogen say they will kill everyone. ... so screw this sentient helpless injured dying creature. .... yeah, that's the Star Fleet thing to do. Let's just side with Seven and kill the damn thing...

Then we have this wonderful exchange between Janeway and Seven.

She tells a war story, blah blah...

Then.

"SEVEN: No. Your decision is tactically unsound. We will be surrounded by Hirogen ships in approximately two hours. If we do not surrender the creature, they will destroy us. A lesson in compassion will do me little good if I am dead.
JANEWAY: It is wrong to sacrifice another being to save our own lives.
SEVEN: I have observed that you have been willing to sacrifice your own life to save the lives of your crew.
JANEWAY: Yes, but that's different. That was my choice. This creature does not have a choice.
SEVEN: It invaded our ship, put our lives at risk to save its own. In my view, it has already forfeited its freedom.
JANEWAY: I'm giving you an order. Report to Deflector Control and begin working on creating a singularity.
SEVEN: I will not comply. I have agreed to remain on Voyager. I have agreed to function as a member of your crew. But I will not be a willing participant in my own destruction or the destruction of this ship.
JANEWAY: Objection noted. We'll do this without you.
SEVEN: You will fail.
JANEWAY: And you have just crossed the line. End of debate. Report to the Cargo Bay and remain there until this is over. Is that understood?"

Janeway gives her every chance to see why she is making this decision. To read some of the comments above, you'd think all Janeway did was barking out and order and massaging metal balls in her hand while demanding strawberries.

Seven is the stubborn self-centered teenager here. Janeway sent her to her room.

As the plot thickens, they need more nano-probes... Seven complies without any hesitation.

Now, as the circumstances unfolded where the force field weakenes and 8472 and the Hirogen resumed their fight, I think Seven's actions should be supported here. This is where I have trouble with the ending and how it unfolded. Janeway's conversation at the end condemned Seven's actions where I think some discussion of how things happened should have taken place. Seven didn't go up there with the intent of beaming them off the ship.

The only thing Seven should have done was informed Janeway of the changed circumstances as she was preparing to take action (beaming them off the ship).

Seven should still be "grounded", but for refusing to help earlier, not her actions under duress at the end.

Overall this is a great episode. I'll go 4 stars even with the miss-step at the end.
Yanks
Thu, May 19, 2016, 11:42am (UTC -6)
...and for all you Janeway haters.... she just takes the moral high road.... folks.

Remember this?

SISKO: "Worf. We don't put civilians at risk or even potentially at risk to save ourselves. Sometimes that means we lose the battle and sometimes our lives. But if you can't make that choice, then you can't wear that uniform."

This isn't the Boy Scouts or a High School field trip. It's frakin Star Fleet!

I just know Picard stated something similar, but I don't feel like looking it up right now.
Niall
Fri, May 20, 2016, 6:07am (UTC -6)
I agree with Amagnonx.
OrangeCube
Wed, Jun 8, 2016, 4:32pm (UTC -6)
@Yanks

Just because one's the "mother" and the other is the "teenager" doesn't mean the mother is right.

7 of 9 was taken aboard the ship against her will, humanized against her will, and forced to be a member of the crew against her will because Janeway decided that 7 of 9 didn't have the right to make her own choices so long as they were choices that she did not agree with. Picard would never have done that - in the end he would have recognized that she was ultimately a child of the borg now, and let her go back.

So here we are in a situation with a person on the ship who has been shanghaied and forced onto this ship against her will, and thus far she has mostly followed the captains orders... but she is not star fleet and she is not obligated to follow the captains orders whatever Janeway may think because she is still a prisoner there against her will.

As far as the Sisko and Worf example, I also thought that was incredibly stupid; especially given the fact that Sisko poisoned an entire world to get Eddington to turn himself in.
Yanks
Thu, Jun 9, 2016, 9:00am (UTC -6)
OrangeCube,

Is mom always right? Of course not, but that's completely irrelevant here.

Seven was wrong and irrational here. Clearly proven above in my post.

... and has already thanked Janeway for saving her from the collective.

What was incredibly stupid? Sisko's actions to capture Eddington are a completely different ball of wax here... not sure how you can make the comparison. Sisko didn't kill anyone... he "smoked the out".
belowzero
Sat, Jun 11, 2016, 10:05am (UTC -6)
Well, Janeway has got a point. Even today with the constitutional right of human dignity (at least in my country) forbids to sacrifice another human in order to save other humans.
I dont know if it applies to aliens though since the constitution only affects a certain country. but then again when youre space travelling they probably widened their fundamental principles.
Joey Lock
Thu, Aug 4, 2016, 2:53pm (UTC -6)
Janeway's logic in this episode is the very reason the Federation almost lost the Dominion War back home, it's the Federations peace loving "Do not harm anyone" attitude that allows species like the Borg, Hirogen, Jem'Hadar, Species 8472 etc to walk all over them, because they portray weakness and a vunerability, their morality.

The age old quote "War is Hell" is something Starfleet doesn't seem to understand, it's a dog eat dog unvierse out there, either you do what you need to survive or you won't be surviving, Seven of Nine saved the crew and the ship. The quote from Spock "The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few or the ONE" is very important here, one viscous, slaughtering alien who got trapped away from his home because he was an invading xenophobic, is not worth an entire ship full of people who have been trapped away from home for years because of an accident.
mephyve
Mon, Aug 29, 2016, 3:16am (UTC -6)
Boring. Look out there's an alien on the ship. Janeway continues to pat herself on her inept back (*)
Mikey
Mon, Nov 7, 2016, 4:51am (UTC -6)
The best Trek offers dilemmas for which there are no easy solutions. This episode is a prime example. I would side with Seven on this one, not for lack of compassion but because the alternative was a hopeless situation. But I can also relate to the opposite position. That's what makes it great.

3.5 stars sounds about right.

To nit-pick:
The scene in engineering was unnecessary. Species 8472 attacks a room full of people and nobody is killed? It could be argued that it didn't have any animosity towards the voyager crew, but then why attack them at all? That scene just didn't sit well with me.

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