Star Trek: Voyager


3.5 stars.

Air date: 11/27/1995
Teleplay by Lisa Klink
Story by Michael Jan Friedman & Kevin J. Ryan
Directed by Winrich Kolbe

"Vulcans are capable of suppressing certain levels of physical pain. Beyond that we must simply endure the experience." — Tuvok on torture

Review Text

Nutshell: Very good. Standout drama with some exceptional performances.

"Resistance" is a prime example of what Star Trek is all about. Star Trek may be science fiction, but it always works better when dealing with human situations and character interaction. This is an episode that, with a few alterations, could have been written for any of the Trek series. It has nothing to do with being 70,000 light years away from home, or being lost where things are new and unfamiliar. It doesn't rely on worthless technical jargon or fancy special effects to get the job done. It just takes a few actors, gives them a decent story, drops them onto a few sets, and suddenly we have very good drama—one of the best episodes of the season.

Opening in mid-crisis with a compelling teaser, "Resistance" creates an immediate sense of urgency, as Janeway's away team beams down to negotiate with a resistance group on a backward planet. This shows Voyager in a crucial moment of need—if the crew cannot get a hold of a vital substance in the next few hours, the warp engines will never be able to be restarted. This is a fresh opening. It's been a long time since a Star Trek crew has been in such a serious situation that under-the-table negotiating becomes the only option.

In the middle of this trade, the hostile planetary ruling force, called the Mokra, busts the away team—Tuvok and Torres are arrested. Neelix manages to escape and return to the ship with the substance. Janeway is injured in the fight but rescued by a crazy old sympathizer named Caylem (Joel Grey), who thinks Janeway is his daughter.

The remainder of the episode deals with Janeway's attempts to rescue her arrested officers from the local Mokra prison, while Chakotay attempts to negotiate a truce with a stubborn Mokra official named Augris (Alan Scarfe). There are also some scenes inside Tuvok and Torres' prison cell as they wait to be interrogated by the Mokra officials.

Janeway's attempts are simultaneously eased and complicated by Caylem, who wants to help his "daughter" in her jailbreak mission. The plot takes a back seat to the very strong characterization between Janeway and Caylem. Joel Grey turns in a riveting performance as the eccentric but optimistic old man—definitely the best guest star the series has featured to date. Kate Mulgrew is also terrific, with perhaps her best performance yet. The two characters seem to be a fountain of effortless charisma.

Caylem also believes his wife has been incarcerated in the prison for years and wants to rescue her now that his "daughter" has come home. But Janeway is reluctant to take him along—he's quite a liability—but she decides it's the least she can do for him, considering how much help he has been to her.

The episode ends with some adventurous elements, as Janeway gets the chance to single-handedly go undercover to rescue her arrested crew members (something Picard could never do, because, if for no other reason, Riker would refuse to let him beam down). This is wonderfully handled by Winrich Kolbe, who plays the scene with precision that doesn't go over-the-top with excessive fisticuffs, but rather an even-handed approach, while demonstrating Janeway's ability to play a smart and determined heroine.

Similarly, the scenes featuring Tuvok and Torres are also quite good because they remain in the realm of plausibility. The idea of Tuvok screaming in pain during his torture is certainly reasonable enough, as is Torres' misconception of the Vulcan's inability to simply "tune out" the experience. The way both Tuvok and Torres remain in character is definitely in the show's favor—Torres is angry and looking for a fight, while Tuvok keeps a cool head while thinking of appropriate forms of retaliation. These scenes could have easily misfired—particularly during the jailbreak—but careful attention is taken to assure credible characterization takes precedence over the more obvious possibility of oversimplified vengeance.

The only excess in "Resistance" is the Voyager-in-jeopardy angle, which is mostly unnecessary. For that matter, Augris' visit to the ship seems a dramatic dead end in retrospect. But, fortunately, most of the Voyager's role in the plot is wisely not stressed.

What this episode is truly about is the small, two-person drama between Janeway and Caylem, which is a hands-down success. The ending, where Janeway allows Caylem to die believing he has accomplished his mission and saved his family, is a poignant moment. It highlights a character whose life has gone from one moment of suffering to the next, and, as a result, has created a fantasy to compensate for the loneliness. The ultimate tragedy is how the Mokra used Caylem's situation as an example for the rest of the people they oppress. Janeway's final words allow him the very least he deserves—to die with a certain amount of happiness and dignity.

Previous episode: Maneuvers
Next episode: Prototype

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Comment Section

52 comments on this post

    Resistance is the best episode Voyager has had up to this point in the show. The last scene with Janeway and her dying "father" brought a tear to my eye.

    A quick word on Alan Scarfe: that voice! one of the few bright spots in Babylon 5's The Lost Tales.

    I could have done with a bit more play between Torres and Tuvok (maybe something along the lines of Ezri and Worf at the end of Season 7 of DS9, or even O'Brien and his imaginary friend in DS9's AMAZING Hard Time). I would have also loved to know a bit more about the world itself - as in TNG's The High Ground. This could have replaced the stupid Voyager scenes.

    Still, a great hour of TV.

    While I enjoyed the feeling of danger in the teaser, I didn't care for the character of Caylem at all. I thought Joel Grey's performance was quite annoying. From the moment Caylem first appeared in the episode I immediately thought "Oh God, there going to keep this guy in the whole episode aren't they?" And indeed they did, much to my chagrin. In fact, (I admit this is rather petty on my part) I've only watched this episode once because I disliked Grey's performance so much.

    But I will probably watch this episode again to give it a second chance.

    Finally: a deeply-moving episode of Voyager!

    I loved the final scene between Janeway and Caylem - as the mother of a little girl myself, I really identified with Caylem's unwavering commitment to his 'daughter'. And Kate Mulgrew did a good job portraying grief, compassion, strength (and even love?) in an understated yet powerful way.

    Does anyone else think Tuvok and Torres would make an unbeatable crime-fighting team?

    My better half and I are watching Voyager for the first time (on DVD) - it seems like there's a hell of a lot of spatial anomalies or episodes that are either a bit meh or wtf. Please tell me there are more eps like "Resistance" and less (far less) than, say, "Elogium".

    BTW: Jammer, congrats on getting hitched!

    Disagree. Was boring the first time, and boring the second. Just an exercise in tedium from my perspective- nothing interesting or thought provoking.

    This was an odd episode for me, because I saw everything coming and still managed to really enjoy it. I stayed teary eyed through the entire last half of the show. I mostly credit the actors for this story's success. But, the writing this week was also very good (FOR A CHANGE!).

    Compared to the mediocre crap Voyager usually puts out, this is easily a four star show for me. They needed to do more episodes like this one and less like the 37's, elogium, non sequitur, twitsted, cold fire... Ok, less episodes like the majority of season 2.

    It's interesting to see this kind of situation when in the last series Janeway refused to go with an underground group to get technology they needed. While in this episode they were in danger of losing the warp engines surely being 70,000 light years from home is pretty serious too.

    The show seemed to want to have a Janeway determined to stick to the principles of the federation except when the script required her to do otherwise.

    The contrivance can't be overcome...the one time Voyager has this problem that makes them never restart their engines again (!), this planet happens to be right here.

    This is certainly a decent episode, but I wasn't particularly moved by the Janeway stuff. Mulgrew did a good job, but I didn't think the writing was all that interesting.

    What wonderful performances by Mulgrew and the guest, Joel Grey. Played with real heart. Brought tears to my eyes at the end.

    One thing that really annoyed me, though:
    At the end, in the prison, guards and heroes get into a firefight. Joel Grey's character stabs the leader of the guards ... and then the guards just retreat, leaving our heroes completely alone? Um ... what? "Hey, the boss isn't here anymore ... to heck with this prison break, let's go get some burgers!"

    Correct me if I am wrong, and this goes for any episode where they lose a comm badge, How the hell can Caylem and Janeway communicate without her universal handy dandy comm badge?

    Aside from that the episode grew on me as it did for Janeway. Caylem seemed pesky at first but grew to sympathize and care.

    Good point about the language issue. I too wondered where the guards disappeared to; and it also bugs me that Janeway could pass for a member of the population despite having a different nose. It's already a little difficult to swallow the idea that other than The occasional exception like Neelix, everyone looks so much like humans with some minor facial difference. But then to say that even this facial difference is not noticeable to the local population is just too much.

    My 10 year old daughter posed a good question: if the planetary force field was so sophisticated, how did the Voyager away team get down to the surface at the beginning?

    Overall, I found this episode meh, overrated.

    This episode seems to have many fans, Jammer included, but I found it to be predictable, the characters wholly stereotypical. That said, I liked the way the episode reminded me of old Trek episodes, in which Kirk would typically beam down to a planet and singlehandedly kick butt.

    This episode is problematic to me for so many reasons, and yet I still thoroughly enjoyed the dramatic performances between Janeway/Caylem and Tuvok/Torres.

    Aside from the oversights already mentioned in other comments above, my biggest peeve is the teaser intro itself. Voyager has been in tough situations before, but when has Janeway ever condoned putting the entire crew in jeopardy by means of a covert operation without first attempting diplomacy? It was odd to see Chakotay attempting to pursue diplomatic channels (not only because he did so very poorly but mostly because he's not the captain!). I think the writers took some liberties with Janeway's character in that sense. She's way too level-headed in every episode leading up to this for me to suddenly believe that she woke up one morning feeling daring enough to go on a dangerous away mission (in what seemed to be) completely out of the blue. A bit more backstory in the beginning would've helped this episode make sense. It seems almost like the storyline was slapped together in order to highlight the dramatic scenes right away rather than honor the detail that makes the entire Star Trek franchise so interesting. So in a nutshell: I was confused, then I was intrigued, then I was annoyed, then I was moved to tears. And now I'm just confused again. Wth just happened? lol

    Very good episode, indeed. I also thought it to be deeper than average so far, what was welcome. Acting was also pretty good. I sort of enjoyed the crazy man and how said his character is if you think of it. Also, the dialog after the torture session on Tuvok was powerful.

    The only goofy things for me were the Darth Vaderish soldiers in black, and the fact that it seems now that many diferent species in the quadrant are characterized just by some diferente stuff in their noses. I don't know, maybe it just some Bajor fashion across the galaxy.

    My problem with this episode is that it violates the Michael Pillar rule. For TNG, Pillar famously advised that shows should be about the main characters, not guest characters. The guest actor in resistance did a good job, but I feel like I didn't learn anything about the main characters. Janeway did a good job, but throughout the episode she was acting as Caylem's daughter, so it's not like we actually learned more about Janeway as a character. I did enjoy the Torres and Tuvok scenes, but wish there were more.

    One of the better executed episodes so far this season. No major turns in plot for the sake of itself; just good storytelling from beginning to end. The plight of the old man was touching and tragic. Unfortunately, in this viewers opinion, the episode was not as touching and tragic as it seemed to want to be. I can't put my finger on it, so I won't.

    It is well done, though.

    3 stars.

    Dom, I disagree that this episode doesn't tell us anything about the crew. I mean, the Janeway plot doesn't tell us too much about her, but it does give her some pathos. But no, I'm talking about B'Elanna.

    The scenes in the jail cell did not quite go the way I expected them to. Torres is known for her temper. Here she was, trapped in a cell with Tuvok. Tuvok, who betrayed her Maquis crew. Tucok, who is insufferably calm. Tuvok, who tells her to sit down and shut up when she first gets trapped in there. I was expecting her to mouth off, maybe getting some pent up anger at Tuvok released. I was expecting, given the situation, that she would shed some of the Starfleet tendencies she picked up.

    But that's not what happens. Instead, Tuvok tells Torres to sit down and shut up, and Torres listens! I was a bit surprised at first, and thought it was a missed opportunity for the show. Just more stale scenes to bide the time and give Dawson and Russ a paycheck until we get back to the meaty Janeway story. That's usually what happens in the B and C plots. The people on the ship spout technobabble, the people in jail spout their cliches.

    But the more I thought about it, it makes sense. I like it. We know Torres hates her aggressive side and feels it's just a bastion of her Klingon heritage. She's embarrassed by it. So even though she has every right to be miffed at Tuvok for his betrayal of Chakotay, she is probably envious of his Vulcan emotional control. And because she's envious of Tuvok, she is even more embarrassed by her actions, so of course she listens to him. Because she respects him so much. Well, not him particularly, but his ability to control his emotions.

    There were a few scenes that reinforce this aspect. Even after Tuvok is taken, Torres was seen being calm and deliberate in her attempts to escape the cell. Secondly, she is severely troubled when she heard Tuvok scream. She wants to completely control her emotions, but the one she thinks can do this has failed in the face of extreme stress. I think that's why she brought it up with Tuvok afterwards. Seeing him lose control shows her how serious it is, because she puts such value in control.

    Most importantly, though, was the scene after Tuvok gets back. She goes to him, moves her hands towards his face, clearly wanting to do something to help him. But there was clearly nothing that she could do. One would normally expect her to vent some frustration at this, but instead, she surrendered to the situation, just like Tuvok does. She stopped, slumped over, and just sat there accompanying her troubled friend. Like a well measured, reasonable person in control of her emotions.

    I liked Torres in this episode. I mean, I liked the main plot too, but I thought the Torres part was interesting.

    The tender side of Janeway... this episode always gets me.

    Tuvok gets torchered, B'Elanna has to endure, Chakotay is in command and it all pales in comparison to the wonderful performance we get out of Kate and Joel here.

    Sorry Picard, Sisko, Archer, Kirk... this is something that Voyager gives us that you can't. ... and I think it's because Janeway is a woman. (not afraid to say it either). I'm not saying those Captains didn't give us many wonderful emotional moments throughout the years, they most certainly did. But Janeway takes it to a completely different level for me.

    This is when Kate is at her best...

    "JANEWAY: She's fine. She was so happy to get your letters. She wanted me to tell you something. She forgives you. We both do."

    sniff, sniff...

    Easy 4 star episode for me.

    Unquestionably the best episode of Voyager up to this point in the series. 4 stars for me... Not understanding some of the criticism shown here in the posts. You can quote the "Piller Rule" all you want, but Patrick Stewart said it best: "Star Trek is at its finest when it tells a good story." Well this was a great story, relatable, sufficient action but not too much, and a wonderful understated drama between Janeway and the old man. Agree with Jammer, Joel was one of the best guest actors to appear on the show, and Mulgrew put on one of her best performances. Loved it!

    I wasn't particularly enamored with this episode. I didn't find the plight or the people particularly memorable. No moreso anyways than those wanderlust stricken people in S3's Darkling. At least Robert Picardo's performance in that saved it from the snorefest it otherwise was.

    In this I really can't find any redeeming virtues about it. S3's Remember was in similar territory but I guess the devil is in the details. I actually found that ep to be more fascinating than this one, too. The people and their history were a bit more fascinating for me. that and the way it unfolded. There was a certain mystery to it because I didn't know what direction it would go in. In this ep I have to say I was nonplussed about the way of life on that planet for better or worse. It could only end one way, which it pretty much did.

    Kate Mulgrew's performance in it was tender, a paradigm shift from the usual half taskmaster half mommy that normally accompanies her Captain persona.

    I don't know what kind of torture tactics they could have possibly used to make a Vulcan scream like he just saw Bea Arthur naked but it was jarring, to say the least. The self control he retained when dragged back into the holding cell was a testament to a man who knew how to quickly regain and retain it, though. I respect that in anyone nowadays, let alone a Vulcan.

    B'elanna's reaction to it all was what we would expect from her. The Klingon/human battle still rages on within. You can practically see her halves warring internally just like they did externally in S1's Faces. I'll give her that much.

    But I know she desperately tries to deny her Klingon half as much as possible. No surprise she opted to suppress those feelings while she tried to help a colleague whom had just been tortured moments earlier, yet retained a controlled demeanor once the session ended. For him the solution was rather simple. For her not so much. In this situation a Klingon reaction would have been pointless in any event. Just conserve your strength. Any level headed leader would have told her that, not just a Vulcan.

    Interesting that these two polar opposites in emotional control would be paired up. No matter how many buddy cop movies that get put out where the protagonists are polar opposites the concept just doesn't seem to get old. But the only time we'd see them in any scenes together were in meditation. Not out in the field.

    Then again Tim Russ was far too underutilized in the show anyways. Which would be one thing if he weren't such a outstanding actor.

    In spite of their scenes, however, I still can't give this more than 1.5 to two stars at best. I just didn't find the premise all that interesting. It didn't exactly bear repeated viewings for me. Other than the Tuvok/Torres scenes I barely remember the rest of it.

    I'm watching Voyager again for the first time since it was on TV in the 90s. I never finished it. I had gotten so exasperated with the series and had given up on it during it's original run. But after watching all of Enterprise on Netflix and reviewing all the old TNG and DS9 episodes I thought... what the hell. Might as well see all of Voyager as well.

    I'm blown away. I remember hating Voyager so much at the time. But watching it now I can't say that I have any major problems with the series. I could nitpick about the Federation way of doing things or criticize some of the technobabble like I could for any of the series. But when I see episodes like this I can't believe I ever gave up on this show. I obviously missed this one during the original airings.

    In the hands of lesser actors, some of the themes expressed in this episode could have felt forced or hokey. Yet due mostly to the outstanding performance of Joel Grey as Caylem, I found myself moved to tears on at least a couple of occasions. This episode could easily stand up against the phenomenal "Duet" from DS9. If there are any more of these types of episodes moving forward I'm going to have to radically change my stance on whether or not Voyager is "good" Star Trek. At this point in the viewing schedule, it definitively is.

    At last an episode that revels in the performances and characterisation. In truth, it's a fairly well worn plot and signposted a million miles away but at least it's played with passion, and while it flirts with melodrama it never quite crosses all the way over. And at least Caylem offers some genuine pathos.

    The other parts of the story are perhaps less successful, but on the whole this has much to commend. 3 stars.

    All the TV work I've seen from Joel Grey has been good. Especially in House MD. And I liked this story. After 9 episodes which were meh at best - sometimes downright embarrassing - Voyager season 2 is finally improving. But it is wearying to see so many reused TNG or DS9 plots. And, for me, it comes off as inferior copy of the first. And a failure to build on strong ideas set up in the latter. Also, after that brief glimmer in season 1, I really miss the Romulans.

    The way Janeway treasures the necklace, and embraced the face of her surrogate father one scene prior, demonstrates why Mulgrew was such an excellent decision for the lead of this show, and for the first female captain of a Star Trek series (as opposed to the original choice of actress for Janeway, the French-Canadian woman who was stiff and terrible in the original filming of the pilot).

    Mulgrew emotes in a deeply feminine and maternal way, without relinquishing her authority as captain for an instant. It's actually amazing to see how well she does this. I used to think of Janeway as kind of standoffish or too tough, but when I watch the series again as an adult she really demonstrates a fullsome tenderness in complete harmony with her lioness-like ferocity at defending her crew — her family — at all costs. In some respects this echoes for me Olmos' portrayal of Adama in BSG, who literally and figuratively played the embattled, indomitable father, both deeply felt and hard as steel.

    It was cool to see Janeway demonstrating real courage during the rescue mission. She is great in this episode. Really liked B'Elana in her boots. Tuvok is badass.

    If the man in the blue vest was wearing military boots as so was a trap, does this mean that Neelix's contact double-crossed Janeway?

    Or, does the fact that the blue-vest guy was so late indicate that he was an imposter, which would further imply that he incapacitated/killed the real contact and took his vest?

    The story is decent and have some touching moment with great acting from Joel Grey (Calem) and Mulgrew, but thats it.
    What is the implication to Janeway as a character with this event?
    What is the moral of story they want to convey to the viewer, I'm really at lost
    At the time of conclusion, it just give the feeling.. OK, it's all over.. lets get back to bussiness

    The inconsistencies is also so troubling. Just before this episode Janeway is hell bent not to give any Federation technology to the Kazon (Maneuvers) even if it's 'only' a single transporter module.

    But now, not only she's willingly trading some feds goodies, but also trading it with resistance movement.. not to the official government.. Effectively changing the balance on allien planet and interfering their policy, a blatant disregard and violation to PRIME DIRECTIVE, and they even dont bother to give the reason? let alone a good one.
    This is really a slap to the face.

    Later it is revealed the planet have this called so so sophisticated defense grid, that an attempt to scan is quickly found and Voyager getting attacked, let alone can beam down stealth.
    So how is the away team can go down to the planet in the first place without being found/tracked?

    Not to mention how easy is to fool a supposedly 'high security prison' just by pretending to be prostitute, and... no guards inside the prison to thwart it? How convinient..

    The story is decent, and it has some moments and potential.. But to enjoy it, you have to suppress yourself to use logic.

    I give 2 stars just because it has strong performance from guest stars and decent storyline

    Meh, I thought this episode was utter crap.

    Joel Grey plays "weird" in every role he plays and that's what he did here. I watched him playing Joel Grey again, like he always does and as others have stated I therefore found him annoying. I couldn't get into the story because he kept dragging me out of it. If it had been an understated performance with true sadness it may have worked, but instead I spent most of the hour watching this character I had never met before play "looney". I had no idea why Janeway didn't ditch him after the first 10 minutes. 1.5 stars.

    This is only the 3rd episode of Voyager I've seen and first I'm commenting on. I mostly agree with Jammer's review -- it is a good story, well acted and the final scene with Janeway and the old man is touching. In Trek, we don't see too many such touching moments that are very relatable and human.
    The relationship between Janeway and the old man started out as annoying but it got ever so much better as the plot went on and I liked how Janeway handled the it the whole way - she was very respectful, tactful and compassionate. The old man has suffered a great deal during the occupation and Janeway eases his mind at the end and he can die in a dignified way -- that is a good story.
    Yes, there were some hokey parts like the final fighting scene when the 2 guards just back away or how Janeway is able to blow up the prison cells and get rid of the forcefield so that the Voyager crew could transport down -- or how Janeway and co. got there in the first place. There will always be some handwaving needed but it doesn't diminish the quality of the story.
    The scenes with Tuvok and Torres was allright. Tuvok does a good job as a Vulcan -- very unemotional.
    A really good episode, 3/4 stars for me. Good to see Janeway show the diversity of acting she's capable of.

    Outstanding episode, one of Voyager's best. Certain scenes in this remind me of both Schindler's List and The Pianist. I'm not saying it's on par with those stories but it did evoke some of the same feelings of pathos I have watching those films. 9 out of 10 stars.

    I forgot that Caylem shanked the nazi with the knife Janeway gave him before he died. 10 out of 10.

    Playing catch-up, so I'll try to be a bit briefer....

    This is an effective drama with fantastic performances from Melgrew and Joel Grey. The relationship between them was well done and led to a very moving ending. Notably, outside the nice scenes between Tuvok and Torres (which Skeptical talked about above), I don't think this episode has much to say about, or is even particularly interested in, living under authoritarian regimes, exactly. Caylem's character doesn't have that much of an arc, since he starts an old man who seems to be deluded who is wilier than he seems, whom Augris believes has been broken but has not *quite* been, and largely ends that way. It's Janeway who, naturally (correctly) has the real character arc here, and her story is about Caylem overcoming her emotional "resistance" to the point where she agrees to bring him along and play the part that he needs her to play -- the beloved, forgiving daughter/angel. And I think that ties in with central concerns of the series, which swirl around the tension between the need to get back to Alpha Quadrant, and the related need to hold onto Starfleet values (mostly the Prime Directive) and as such to play non-interference, and the urgency of the current Delta Quadrant surroundings, to form connections there, and to get involved. I especially like how Caylem's story was about whether or not he should get involved in the resistance, and what impact that can have on his family, and how that ends up mirroring Janeway's own conflict over whether to get emotionally involved with this guy and in his plight. By allowing herself to validate his viewing her as his daughter, she seems to be letting her guard down in general to what the DQ has to offer; in this case she's just telling a white lie to a dying man she's come to care about, and so it's not a big violation of her non-interference principles, but it shows a kind of crack in her emotional armour, that she's willing to play the role of daughter to some Delta stranger.

    It was mentioned above that Janeway's policy here seems to contradict her position in Prime Factors. I think it's a bit ambiguous, but I think that Janeway is more willing to trade with a resistance movement under an oppressive government, and to see them as a legitimate entity, rather than (as in Prime Factors) a lone huckster within a system that seems to be mostly fine, if with a leadership that's selfish in their dealings with Voyager. This mostly makes sense to me, and you could see this as a mild compromise of Janeway's previously stated principles which is basically consistent, or you could see it as basically something Janeway would have done even right after Caretaker, or maybe it's just inconsistent writing. It might have been nice to talk about it more explicitly, but I don't mind in this case.

    I want to agree with the 3.5 star rating, but somehow that Augris seems to be something like emperor, ambassador, beat cop, and prison guard and the basically unbelievable plotting around the prison escape make it hard for me. A very high 3.

    Surprisingly no one has mentioned that Mulgrew and Grey have worked together before, in somewhat different roles .... in REMO WILLIAMS

    A quirky "spy" film from the 1980s

    The crazy guy was so annoying, and I have no idea why Janeway didn't leave as soon as she realized he was insane. Instead she just hung out in his house for like 1/2 hour, then took him with her.

    Janeway pretends to be a whore to get into the prison. I guess that Caylem did too? He came in with her, though the people at the prison obviously knew him. Maybe he was in a pimp disguise. But since the whores weren't supposed to go in there anymore, who let them in? And why did she think that whores were allowed in the prison to begin with? Unless someone told her offscreen, I suppose.

    And I don't know if finding out that the insane guy's wife was actually dead was supposed to be some sort of surprise or not, because it certainly wasn't.

    Whatever. Not a terrible episode. 2 1/2 stars.

    I confess I have to agree with those who said Caylem is annoying. Mental illness is a sad thing, especially when it is brought on by something traumatic. Watching it like this though is unpleasant

    Teaser : ***.5, 5%

    The crew are seen surreptitiously trading for some substance in civilian clothing on an alien planet. Before they can make off with the goods, Tuvok and Torres are captured and Janeway is shot. Before she can be hauled off by the helmeted guards, an old man runs up screaming at them. Only Neelix manages to slip away. Certainly an engaging teaser.

    Act 1 : **.5, 17%

    We pick up in Engineering where Chakotay and Harry are watching the warp core lava lamp churn reluctantly. They are dangerously close to some sort of permanent shut-down that fuck them over. I've seen/read some objections to the bullshit technobabble around this premise; that if the core is ejected, wouldn't that slow the anti-matter reaction rate to zero? I don't really need to defend this topic, but if you watch “Day of Honour” and “Renaissance Man,” you'll see that, even when ejected, the swirling blue energy continues to circulate. There's also “Night” and “The Void” in which the core is shut down entirely, but I have to assume in those instances, they had the macguffin substance they needed to make things not lock up. Whatever. None of this really matters, but for the pedantic at heart, answers do exist. Chakotay and his freshly-died hair is forced to shut down shields to extend their clock. Neelix checks in and gets beamed aboard to deliver the magic goo, stabilising the core and ending the crisis. So we can get under way yes? Oh, yeah we should probably rescue the captain and security and engineering chiefs, huh? Neelix reports that the Okra or whatever (the alien overlords) must of spied on the away team's transactions with a resistance movement on the planet. Kim finishes rebooting their systems, and with his shields and phasers back in working order, Chakotay is ready to confront the overlords.

    On the bridge, Neelix warns Chakotay that the aggressive Okra will probably start shooting them right away. So it's a surprise (assuming you find Neelix reliable) that they are greeted cordially, if stiffly, by Augris. He promises to look into the likely detention of Janeway and co.

    Meanwhile, Torres is getting herself shocked by the force field keeping her an Tuvok imprisoned. Her temper is getting the best of her, naturally. Tuvok's cool logic allows Torres to “hope for the best,” at least for the time being. So, what of Janeway? Well it seems that the old man, who is singing to himself, managed to smuggle her to safety in his home. She awakens to his mercies and discovers her combadge has gone missing. He tends to her injuries in an overly familiar way, calling her “his little girl.” Janeway is to weak at the moment to do more than roll her eyes at the compounding grief this little away mission is causing her.

    Act 2 : ***, 17%

    Later, Janeway has regained her strength and questions her would-be saviour who insists on calling her Raquella or something, his daughter's name. He has clearly succumbed to some sort of dementia, but he is still in control of his basic faculties, and clearly has a great deal of transferred affection for Janeway. She does her best to humour him to figure out what happened to her crewmen. Her insistence on storming the prison to mount a rescue seems to trigger him—he thinks Janeway is going after her long-lost mother. He embraces her, catching Janeway off guard.

    Augris meets with Chakotay on the Voyager and maintains an air of diplomacy. It seems that the rumour mill established in “Cold Fire” continues to plague the Voyager's reputation in the DQ. The Okra have a justification to treat them with extreme prejudice. He confirms that the missing crew have been imprisoned, but promises to do his best and accommodate him. Chakotay privately advises Neelix to resume contact with the resistance in hopes of pursuing better options.

    How does Augris make good on his promise? By interrogating Tuvok and Torres! Tuvok's unflappable logic and Torres' frustrated lashing out yield nought but frustration from Augris. So he opts to have Tuvok tortured for information. Apparently, this confrontation between the Voyager crew and the Okra has led to increased police presence, as Janeway observes from her would-be childhood home. He's gearing up for their two-man raid with such essentials as a pretty dress and jewellery for his wife to wear. But Janeway's not crazy. She's going in alone. Eventually, their conversation leads to the revelation that the old man has a collection of letters he's written to his wife, the tragedy punctuated by Joel Gray's quirky, pathetic and desperate performance. Despite herself, Janeway is touched by this victimised old man and his plight. His garbled recollections give us hints about the effects of the totalitarian regime. Janeway is still adamant that she go alone, but a raid by the helmet people sends the pair running out together through a secret exit.

    Act 3 : ***, 17%

    The pair make their way to the home of a resistance-member. Augris himself appears on the street, triggering the old man once more. It was he who captured the wife, apparently, as it is his duty to do, well, everything on this planet except wear a helmet. Janeway observes Augris and the helmet club question some civilians and stop the resistance contact from the teaser before he can get to her. The begin to haul him off, but the old man (Janeway calls him Caylem) intervenes, playing up the street-hobo clown persona to its fullest. Augris is so entertained by this little act that the contact is able to slip away. Augris is happy to humiliate the old man before the crowd, shoving a fruit on his head. Appropriate that he should remind me of Diogenes: “Man is the most intelligent of the animals—and the most silly.” While Torres continues to vainly find a way out of her cell, she hears Tuvok's unbridled screams of pain in the distance as the Okra have their way with him.

    On the Voyager, the crew search for a way to break the away team out of the prison, but there are tech-problems. Taking a cue from DS9, this problem is presented in an un-belaboured fashion that is most welcome. On the planet, Janeway is also working on a way to infiltrate the prison. The contact is understandably incredulous about Caylem's involvement. He proves himself useful once again, letting Janeway trade the wife's jewellery for some weaponry.

    Act 4 : ***.5, 17%

    Janeway and Caylem await the overdue weapons merchant, providing another opportunity for exposition. The wife was a resistance fighter in her own right. Caylem was finally convinced to join the fight, but he didn't quite have the chops for it and she ended up getting arrested waiting for him to join her. He never told his daughter, whatever happened to her, out of shame. We can start to piece together what drove this poor fool insane. The merchant finally arrives, but Janeway notices his military boots which give him away as an informant for the Okra. Undiscouraged, Janeway spots a pair of prostitutes ambling by and realises that when violence fails, sex always sells.

    Tuvok is tossed back into his cell, looking badly-beaten by his ordeal. Torres manages, just barely, to control her temper and adopt a modicum of Vulcan discipline. She apologises to Tuvok. The exchange is telling:

    TORRES: I guess I always assumed that Vulcans didn't feel pain like the rest of us. That you were able to block it out somehow. Until I heard. Was that you I heard?
    TUVOK: Vulcans are capable of suppressing certain levels of physical pain. Beyond that we must simply endure the experience.
    TORRES: How can you say that so calmly? You must feel some anger at what they did to you, some desire to fight back.
    TUVOK: Under the circumstances, physical resistance is ineffective. We are fighting back by refusing to give them any information.

    Tim Russ is especially effective in his portrayal here, heartbreakingly Vulcan in his demeanour, struggling through the intense pain he feels. Torres notices the contact being tossed into another nearby cell. Janeway has gussied herself up, meanwhile, and propositions one of the prison guards. Caylem gets the drop on him and Janeway is able to collect a weapon. She gets herself into the prison, but makes sure to keep Caylem safely outside, promising to try and find the wife. She hasn't lost her objectivity, despite the outpouring of feeling she clearly has for this man.

    Harry Kim has devised a clever plan of his own to give Paris and his rescue team a small head start in its efforts—ah, but the Okra quickly adapt to this cleverness and open fire on the Voyager. Augris makes contact and warns them away.

    Act 5 : ***.5, 17%

    Janeway, meanwhile, is able to shut down the internal force fields, giving Tuvok and Torres the opportunity to escape their cell. From the Voyager, Paris surmises that this presents an opportunity to mount a rescue, and Chakotay consents. Caylem has also taken advantage of the situation and stumbled his way inside. Augris, too, has made his way within this prison and the helmet boys capture the resistance members, the Voyager crew and the wise fool.

    AUGRIS: I must say I'm impressed, Caylem. You never made it this far before. Every so often he goes on one of his missions to rescue his wife. She's been dead for twelve years...Sometimes he gets all the way up to the front gate. We send him on his way and allow him to serve as a reminder of just how futile it is to challenge us. I thought you'd learnt that lesson when you lost your daughter. She made it as far as the tunnels before she was shot...So much tragedy for one man to bear. And now your foolishness has condemned another innocent woman.

    Caylem once again provides a momentary distraction and manages to stab Augris in the gut, but not before getting shot himself. Janeway makes an unusual choice here, play-acting as his daughter and offering him absolution before he finally dies. It's a lovely scene that makes the most of the enormous talent on the screen. Paris and his team finally arrive and complete their rescue, and the contact promises to memorialise Caylem for his contribution to the resistance.

    Episode as Functionary : ***, 10%

    For me, this is a typically strong episode of Star Trek. Not exceptional, but strong. There's a competent story that gives us a framework to meditate on some weighty themes, delivered by strong performances. The depiction of the fascist state is a bit rushed, but Augris proves to be an effective (if ridiculously omnipresent) antagonist. I like the way the he baits the Voyager into giving him a legal excuse for firing on her. Obviously, he never had any intention of returning Tuvok and the others, so by just sitting on his captives, he forces Chakotay's hand and makes the Voyager look like aggressors against this planet.

    I very much like the way resistance to the state is explored in its different manifestations; there's the overt paramilitary activity taken up by young men like the contact, but the story is careful to point out that those whom society punishes most severely have their own contributions to make. Janeway manages to mount her rescue by virtue of posing as a sex worker, an activity that the regime doesn't celebrate but privately tolerates in corruption. And of course, Caylem has been driven to madness by the state's injustices. Giving him the killing blow against Augris was a bit pat, but the message couldn't be clearer; eventually the oppressed masses will overthrow their overlords.

    The Torres/Tuvok dynamic is nicely handled, beginning a new relationship for the series that will be explored further in later seasons. The Voyager material is also competent and manages to give Kim and Chakotay a sense of purpose that is often missing when Janeway is on the bridge. It should also be mentioned that, unlike in “Prime Factors,” Janeway has chosen to make an illegal deal with members of an alien society. What has changed since that episode is the Kazon arc (“State of Flux,” “Initiations,” “Cold Fire” and “Manœuvres”). Seska has propagated harmful rumours about the Voyager that has made trade extra difficult, and Janeway has become more desperate as a result. That issue is not reckoned with here, but it will be.

    Final Score : ***

    A stellar story. Out of all the captains in the previous series I like Janeway the most, in this episode she is at her best. Very moving.

    4 stars.

    It got me all sad at the end when the poor man dies with his head turned towards the camera and then on the wide shot 2 seconds later it is turned away from the camera... I doubt very much Janeway flipped it! I liked the episode. Pretty great acting from Joel and Kate.

    As Tuvok was supposed to be Torres' mentor in the Voyager Bible (but wasn't really followed), I wonder if this was a concession to that.

    I can understand some nitpicking about the plot, but man, that last scene is just brilliant. For me, it's just as powerful re-watching it the 10th time as it was the first time I saw it. Mulgrew's eyes say it all without verbalizing anything.

    Joel Grey and Mulgrew acted their asses off the entire episode.

    4 stars.

    I think this is the best episode so far in the run of "Voyager." Kate Mulgrew hits a home run, and I liked the Torres/Tuvok scenes a lot. Great idea to put those two together.

    These DQ races sure aren't nice folks.

    "Correct me if I am wrong, and this goes for any episode where they lose a comm badge, How the hell can Caylem and Janeway communicate without her universal handy dandy comm badge? "

    I thought universal translators were implants, like in the DS9 episode Little Green Men. In any case there's no point trying to understand how the universal translators work because they have never made any sense at all and never will. They're just a Macguffin to explain why we don't have to read subtitles.

    Squiggy, I too have always assumed that Starfleet implants its away teams with translators.

    That said, the portrayal of universal translators in "Voyager" remains exceptionally bad. In TNG/DS9 most of the races encountered were races familiar to the Federation, and so one should expect seamless translation.

    In "Voyager", however, Starfleet is repeatedly encountering civilizations for the very first time, and yet has instantaneous, perfect translations. IMO most scripts on "Voyager" would play better if we had to wait a few seconds for the translators to do their magic, or if we were privy to a few lines of untranslated gibberish before things kick in.

    I agree the dramatic heft of this episode is on Janeway and her "dad." When he was telling her about how his wife got captured and asked Janeway to forgive him was actually moving. You could feel the empathy and compassion Janeway had for this man, simply by the look in her eyes right before she hugs him. Mulgrew is a great actor and it really shines when she has good material like this

    Again, my opinion is in the minority, but I truly hated this episode! There was nothing offensive about it, but for aesthetic reasons and personal preference, I would give it 1 star. It didn't capture my interest, and the character of the confused man who thought Janeway was his daughter was very annoying to me. Mental illness is a sad state, and I sympathise with those who suffer from it-I just don't see the need to watch it on television. But again, this is just my opinion

    "Mental illness is a sad state, and I sympathise with those who suffer from it-I just don't see the need to watch it on television."
    Well, you are part of Christian denomination that predicted the second coming of Christ five times and the Armageddon once. For anybody who didn't noticed, the world ended In 1975. Nevertheless, you are still with that group.
    I'm just posting two links for no reason:

    Let's recap:
    - you don't want to see people being intimate before marriage
    - you don't want to see any representation of mental illness

    I would assume you are against any representation of LGBTQ people or women in positions of power, considering that both are forbidden in your denomination. You are part of a group that in sociology is frequently defined as totalitarian so why even watch a show about a progressive and democratic future??

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