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RonB
Tue, May 11, 2021, 5:21am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Dragon's Teeth

@Caedus you are a royal idiot and/or a troll.
Screw you back, but 10 times more!

Sure Seven was a bit careless by getting one guy out of stasis, but seriously how much harm can one guy do? Do you have this little confidence in our trained and experienced starfleet officers that you you think they could not handle one humanoid waking from stasis?

The blame (I want to say: as always is the case, but I will just say: as often is the case) is of course 99.99% on Janeway. She woke up the entire army before figuring out what these guys had been up to and why their world had been obliterated 900 years ago. Cant be that they were a menacing society, they had to be victims of course. It’s not like they are hiding in caves with a small army of warships ready to be used the minute they wake up. Also as others have mentioned if she had not antagonised the Turei she would not have put the ship & crew at risk in the first place. Just imagine the same scene with Kirk or Picard, or Sisko, or even Jellico. Guaranteed they would have become best buds with the Turei by the end of the episode.

And to think she goes on explicitly blaming Seven to her face after all this. Just makes you think she is not only a reckless bad captain, but probably completely delusional too.

Almost every episode of VOY there should be a mutiny relieving Janeway of command. Her character is so badly written it’s unbelievable, and as I have said before it unfortunately does more harm than good for the gender equality cause.
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RonB
Wed, May 5, 2021, 8:48am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Course: Oblivion

@Peter G.

Absolutely, I do agree with your point that in some instances the critic will create more meaning or value than there actually is in the work being reviewed.

I am just not sure that is the case here. Or at least not completely. @Proteus’ reflexion indeed probably goes much deeper than the writers ever thought. That being said, this episode (as I remember it) is so depressing — it portrays a facsimile Voyager crew being unsuccessful at everything they try, ultimately leading to their death — that I would contend their story arc, with all its dramatic weight, was the intention of the writers. This is what triggered people to reflect on it in many interesting ways (with all the posts above), so I do think this episode definitely has something to it!
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RonB
Wed, May 5, 2021, 7:52am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S6: Equinox, Part II

What a terrible episode.

Pretty much everything has been said above:
- Janeway is horrible, turning into a cold blooded murderer twice (mass murder on the second attempt)
- Ransom’s change of heart makes no sense, it’s just a contrivance to close the episode
- Chakotay / Tuvok should have relieved her of command, she was a madman. As in not that I personally think they should have (which I do), but in the sense that their characters as we know them for the past 5 seasons would have never allowed things to go that far
- The doc’s behavior makes no sense, ethical subroutines deleted or not, it makes no sense they are easily removable anyway without major impact on other aspects of his mind/functionalities
- Voyager should have outgunned the Equinox in an instant
- Voyager’s tactics to follow the Equinox into the atmosphere is so stupid
- Voyager’s security team are really the worst of starfleet, couldnt stop a few scientists who escaped the brig

Etc. Etc. Etc.

First part set up was so good I knew they would end up butchering everything in part 2. There were so many interesting ways to take this.

But I would say above all, not being a feminist (or woman) myself, I liked the idea that in the 90s they were promoting gender equality with a female captain... but when you look at episodes like this one, it actually achieves the opposite, many people will draw the conclusion (consciously or subconsciously) that the last thing they want is a woman in command. Everyone involved would have been much better off with Chakotay or Tuvok at the helm.

What a horrible show.
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RonB
Tue, Apr 27, 2021, 7:28am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S5: Course: Oblivion

@Peter G.

You could say the same about a lot of (modern) art. And you might feel that way about it, which is fine, but one of the key aspects about modern art is INTENT. A pile of dirt meant to be an exquisite meal is just a failure. A pile of dirt served for dinner, but meant to be a pile of dirt, actually has *some* artistic value. It is meant to create reactions / thoughts / emotions. Not great art if you ask me but still art, at least in my book.

I personally found this episode wonderful, for several reasons:
1- it is different, it stands out. Bleak, no happy ending, no technobabble saving grace etc. For that alone it is worth watching. Watching VOY episode after episode just felt like the same recipe served over and over again. This in a weird way is refreshing.
2- it makes people think about their life, and life in general (see all the comments on this website)
3- fake within fake becomes real: the duplicate mimetic voyager in the TV show actually has the most realistic fate — failure at everything it attempts and ultimately death (even though that crew was ‘better’ at pretty much everything compared to the original crew). So much has been said about how unrealistic voyager is, they should have a hard time finding resources, etc etc. Well there you have it, this is the realistic fate of a voyager lost in the delta quadrant. They dont make it home because the ship and the people decay and cannot find the resources on the way.
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RonB
Thu, Mar 25, 2021, 8:19am (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S4: Retrospect

It is extremely frustrating to watch these episodes where characters make 180 turns on positions without explanation.

Almost as if the writers want to confuse the audience on purpose. Here for instance Janeway goes from sensible and rational investigation to concluding Seven made it all up, and then accusing her of the consequences (the way she looks at her when the guy blows himself up).

It is also depressing to come on this site to try and find answers (or at least interesting interpretations) that can provide clarity, only to find 90% of the posts being biased opinions with heavy preconceived political messages.

There is no evidence that the arms dealer is guilty or innocent. What’s the point of trying to infer whether he is or not, based on his reaction, or statistical data of false vs true claims, or whether Seven’s story is believeable, etc? We just don’t know, so he remains innocent, from a legal perspective. Given the facts presented there is nothing more to say or do about it, that’s it.

What is truly appalling however is that for some reason, the fact that he is not proven guilty automatically seems to mean that Seven made it all up and is at fault!!! This is so wrong on many levels. We actually don’t know, it has NOT been established, so 2 possibilities exist:

1/ If Seven indeed made it all up, it means she is in a pretty bad place psychologically speaking and needs support. She is a member of the crew (the ‘family’ as the show has tried to convince us so many times), she should be helped. Seeing Janeway blaming Seven really is revolting. That’s right, as the SINGLE and ONLY authority figure in these people’s life, blame them when they are in distress and something bad happens to them, that’s the right approach. I can only pray the writers did not have kids themselves because these poor little ones must have gotten messed up pretty bad. What I wanted to see here is compassion and much more discussion with Seven to try and help her as she has extreme difficulty dealing with this and more generally adapting to her new situation.

2/ If the arms dealer actually did violate Seven, well, it means Janeway is blaming the victim, great

The only thing I am wondering is whether the writers are idiots/incompetent, lazy, or purposely making Janeway’s actions and reactions contentious / provocative for the sake of it. If I had to guess I would say it is all of the above. In any case that shows contempt for the audience, and this is where I see a big difference with TNG. I only felt respect as a viewer when watching TNG. Whereas with VOY I feel like I am being played with, confused gratuitously more often than not.
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RonB
Fri, Mar 5, 2021, 3:10pm (UTC -5)
Re: VOY S3: Sacred Ground

As a previous commenter mentioned, reading the posts on this forum makes the experience so much greater. It is a real pleasure to come here and read different opinions and views, and think further through the episodes.

My personal take on Janeway’s reaction at the end - and what makes this episode really interesting in my opinion, both from a character development perspective and as a more general philosophical reflexion - is the following: she has found limitations to her way of thinking and more importantly, her way of being.

Her scientific approach, which she uses to control her environment, was not the right solution here, given the time constraints. It had the potential to work but not fast enough. Her only other option was for her to trust her gut and go with the 3 stooges’ recommendation.

She did, and it worked. So when the doctor provides the full explanation using their conventional scientific referential, this is not what is interesting for her. She is on the contrary pondering on the various limitations of their current scientific knowledge and is trying to come up with a new systemic approach to decision making, but what else should this be based on? What other ways of making decisions are there? How can you trust other people without factual proof? Is she even able to use other decision-making approaches given how engraved her scientific approach is in her personality? In her life there must have been times when her scientific approach was actually not the right way to do things, what could she have done differently, and better, in her past? If these beings are not gods but aliens, do they have more advanced scientific knowledge, if so how limited is her current knowledge vs. other aliens? Etc. Etc.

It is a profound moment of self questioning.

While the writing is (voluntarily?) ambiguous on whether this is a science vs religion/faith episode, my personal interpretation is that it is not the question raised here. To start with, opposing science to religion is, as many have posted above, quite sophistic. More importantly, the episode does not portray Janeway as developing religious faith (pretty sure she did not convert to the alien religion in order to stop the forcefield).

What the episode says, however, is that these gods/aliens (whatever they are) not only knew the way to cure Kes but also managed to ‘trick’ Janeway in getting to the solution without coercion. One could even speculate that they engineered the whole thing (by purposely harming Kes in a specific manner) for the purpose of getting Janeway to change her way of being or at least question it. If this is the type of stuff these gods/aliens do, then it is quite logical (!) that the people on this planet developed this into a religion. All the more that based on the information provided in the episode these beings definitely seem to be benevolent.

Nowhere did I feel a strong intent on the part of the writers to say that it was good or bad to base decisions on scientific facts nor did it seem to infer that considering these beings as gods, developing a religion around them and having faith was good or bad (or right or wrong).

The question whether the gods/aliens engineered the whole thing from the start is also something Janeway might be wondering about when she ignores the doctor’s speech at the end. Which would add to her recognising of her limitations and self questioning.

Personally, I really appreciate that Star Trek (from what I have seen through one viewing of TNG and DS9, and thus far in VOY) never pins science against religion. It does however portray the manipulation that can be made of them and it does play with the stereotypes that can be triggered in the viewer’s mind, and hopefully questioned.
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RonB
Mon, Nov 16, 2020, 9:47am (UTC -5)
Re: DS9 S2: Cardassians

I am trying to like DS9 after having thoroughly enjoyed TNG.

While I must say I am rather unimpressed by DS9 so far (except Duet, and perhaps a few other good moments), this episode in particular bothered me.

Good set up, interesting insights into Bajoran / Cardassian history, good execution with complex characters... all kind of butchered in the end.

No motive or reason for Sisko’s choice other than “Cardassians should be with Cardassians”... Not only is this so not Star Trek (at least what I saw in TNG), but it paints Sisko as an idiot who should not be given an arbitrator role ever again. Shame because Sisko is the only character I find interesting so far. Others are too mono-dimensional for me.

Also — what is wrong with Pa’Dar? He just learned Dukat actually stole his son away from him years ago and shows no reaction? Should he not jump at Dukat straight away or at least swear to seek out revenge or something? So odd and weird.
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