Star Trek: Voyager


2.5 stars.

Air date: 4/26/1999
Teleplay by Bryan Fuller & Nick Sagan and Kenneth Biller
Story by Bryan Fuller
Directed by Allan Kroeker

"I didn't think Vulcans believed in luck."
"As a rule, we don't. But serving with Captain Janeway has taught me otherwise."

— Seven and Tuvok

Review Text

Nutshell: It looks good, but the needle on the think-o-meter maintains a level very near zero.

Roxann Dawson is an actress of enormous appeal: edgy, attractive, energetic, convincing—and projecting lots of intelligence. It's too bad the stories can't dig deeper into her character in a quest for finding something new. The latest B'Elanna vehicle, "Juggernaut," seems for the most part pitched to a crowd that doesn't want to be bothered with thinking about anything unfolding on the screen. Not that that's necessarily a bad thing, because "Juggernaut" exploits Dawson's talents nonetheless, even if in primarily superficial ways.

This is the type of episode that's all atmosphere and minimal substance. With perhaps one key exception, what substance we have is mostly unmistakably obvious, with the lesson telegraphed far in advance.

But that doesn't really matter too much, because "Juggernaut" is an hour sold almost completely on performance, direction, and production values. The only real mystery here: How did it require three writers to come up with such a bare-boned story?

"Juggernaut" isn't bad; it's just really, really simple. It's B-movie action/adventure, with 20th-century themes that look like they were purchased at a bargain store. Maybe I'm somewhat spoiled right now with the deeply layered story arc of Deep Space Nine currently unfolding, but I think Voyager can dig a little deeper than this.

Here lies the epitome of safe, mainstream appeal. Maybe that's why it was made. Episodes like this make my job as a reviewer a cake walk. I'm scarcely inspired to think about what I've seen (what you see is about all you get), so all I really need to do is react. My reaction is something along the lines of, "Nice sets, nice dirt, nice grime, nice smoky atmosphere." And, of course, "Nice job, Roxann Dawson." Dawson gets a chance to look real cool and badass-esque this week.

Anyway, to get the big gripe out of the way, I must ask: What the hell are the Malon doing out here? Shouldn't they be about 25 years behind Voyager's present position? Supposing they do have some form of ultra-fast travel—which given past stories doesn't seem at all likely—why don't we hear about it? I'm not trying to nitpick, but the presence of the Malon not only seems incredibly dubious, but is indicative of a thinking pattern that is frighteningly similar to encountering the Kazon again and again during season two. One of the biggest appeals of season five is that we got two giant leaps closer to the Alpha Quadrant, instilling a sense of progress in the series. Now all of a sudden the writers bring back the Malon, so what am I supposed to be thinking? That 25 years is just a joke to be utilized when the producers feel like it? (Grrrr.)

Putting aside the continuity holes, however, the episode does manage to make the Malon somewhat more interesting than past episodes ("Night," "Extreme Risk") have depicted them. These toxic-waste haulers, labeled none-too-happily "the scourge of the quadrant" by Torres at one point in the story, take on a certain depth here, mainly because the story has the Voyager crew working with them rather than against them. The Malon here are more fully defined people instead of cheap sources of conflict.

The lead Malon survivor, Fesek (Ron Canada), offers a sympathetic and fairly interesting persona as a laborer who doesn't particularly like the fact he has to haul around toxic waste to earn a living, but simply accepts it as a simple fact of life (as well as all the permanent damage his body takes because of radiation poisoning). The Malon come across as a well-intentioned but flawed society with a toxic waste issue that unfortunately seems to earn them that reputation, "scourge of the quadrant." They dump their waste, but try to do so safely, in isolated areas of space. Internal to their society, there are those who sacrifice their well-being—the "core laborers," who work so close to the reactor that they're likely setting themselves up for an early death—for the benefit of the "greater good," hence the appropriate issue of the "juggernaut."

The main premise is one of those race-against-the-clock machines: Malon ship experiences mechanical catastrophe; Malon crew is mostly killed; Voyager crew happens upon crippled Malon ship, rescues a few Malon survivors; Malon tell Voyager crew that Malon vessel will blow up very soon, laying waste to massive areas of space; Voyager crew—led by engineering whiz Lt. Torres—must help quickly defuse Malon reactor before occurrence of big explosion.

The rest of the story comprises the away team walking, crawling, or running through Malon tunnels in an attempt to shut down the reactor (via loosely story-defined "checkpoints") before it blows. There's a twist: A creature might be looming in the tunnels. No maybe about it—one of the team, an ill-fated Malon that should've been wearing a red shirt—gets attacked (to death) by this "creature." We don't get a good look at the creature, of course, until the end, when the "creature's" identity wraps up the story (more on that in a moment).

Aside from the simple mechanics of the plot, the central character story is about B'Elanna's emotional control problems. A scene early in the episode has B'Elanna being counseled by Tuvok on the finer points of meditation, etc., as Tuvok plays Yoda and offers B'Elanna insights like, "The rage within you runs deep."

This isn't bad, but it's about as subtle as a brick—to the face. The whole characterization is written and played up to an obviousness that requires very little effort on the part of the viewer. And we can tell far in advance that Torres' anger—which can also provide "a source of strength," as Tuvok says—will be used later in the story on the hardware side of the plot (as a source of strength, naturally).

Character-wise, haven't we been here, and done this? Why is it we suddenly have B'Elanna unable to control her emotions, in an overstated manner that seems to regress her character back to season one? I like B'Elanna's fire, but it's much better utilized as an aspect of the character (like her fury concerning the genocide cover-up in third season's "Remember," for example) rather than the embodiment of it.

Also, something in Dawson's contract this season apparently says she must remove layers of clothing every time she becomes the anchor of a show. (Pleading guilty, I'll note the trend, but I won't complain about it.) It's nice to have female-driven action out here in TV land, but given the character's history, couldn't this be worth more? I suppose my biggest complaint is that we don't get enough B'Elanna episodes, and I hate to see the few we get devoted to almost completely hardware-driven stories.

Synopsis of the hardware aspect of the story would be relatively pointless; one can't convey atmosphere in a review (at least not in a way that would be worth the space devoted to description). Suffice it to say the corridor-traipsing is sufficiently well executed for what it sets out to do. The ending has all the major characters trapped in the reactor room while the "creature" is zeroing in on them ... as Seven, back aboard Voyager, monitors a viewscreen with the floor plan of the Malon ship denoting the location of Our Heroes and the "creature" in a cinematic statement obviously inspired by Alien and a dozen other movies.

The "creature" turns out to be not a creature but a core laborer who has gone insane with a quest for vengeance and has sabotaged his own ship, with the new intention of killing everyone on board the vessel and blowing it up. I have mixed feelings on the monster turning out to be a disgruntled crewman. On one hand, it's not very interesting; but on the other, it does make the juggernaut theme more solid.

That brings us to the hour's one moment of genuine thought—the moment where B'Elanna is the last line of defense between the core laborer and his plan to blow up the ship. The obviousness of B'Elanna's temper protecting herself and her shipmates follows the pattern along the obvious line established early in the episode, as she beats him into submission and is able to delay the ship's destruction. However, the consequences of the violence are briefly considered before and after the fact. B'Elanna tries to first reason with the core laborer before resorting to the necessary violence. And after the crisis is over, there's a good scene where she goes back to her quarters and ponders the unfortunate nature of having to resort to anger and violence—something I imagine she hoped to avoid when she started the mission.

Other than this one scene, most of the plot is mechanical A-to-B plotting. Still, though, I found "Juggernaut" appealing for all the superficial reasons it probably set out to be. The production values made for good, grimy eye-candy, and Dawson is extremely watchable in a physical role, where ultimately she's fighting off toxic-waste Malon baddies with a pipe. If I'm going to see characters in a potboiler story like this, B'Elanna is a particularly good choice.

I'm a B'Elanna fan. I think she's the most unjustly underused character on Voyager's ensemble (opposed to Neelix, who is generally a more justly underused character—but that's just a cheap shot that I couldn't resist). I was looking forward to "Juggernaut." Dawson doesn't disappoint. Nor does the atmosphere. But the overall simplicity of the story doesn't give the character what she's due.

Next episode: Seven takes some lessons on romance.

Previous episode: Think Tank
Next episode: Someone to Watch Over Me

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Comment Section

78 comments on this post

    This episode was very enjoyable to me, and I love Roxann Dawson. The last thirty seconds defintely would propel this episode to at leat a recommended rating. I enjoyed this episode from the beginning of the hour but the ending with B'Elanna remembering how she just attacked the man at the end was done very well. It showed that she still had yet to get over her internal anger.

    For some reason, I always laugh at the scene were Neelix is tasting his theta-radiation concoction in the mess hall. It's a cute, funny scene between him and Chakotay, and Phillips' "gag-reflex" is just hysterical.

    I'm watching this episode right now and, like "Voyager" in general, this episode has stood the test of time and still delivers entertainment and looks good even by the standards of 2009.

    Okay, I'm only 7 minutes into the episode... but what the hell are the maylon's doing out in this part of space. Wasn't there 2 episodes where voyager put 10 years of their journey... thus moving forward 20,000 light years more or less? Do the maylon's really occupy that much of space? What a joke.

    This episode sucks. I give it 1 or 1.5 stars out of 4.

    There are so many lines and plot devices that are used to death on this show. There is no drama and suspense at all, even though the show requires it. It's just typical voyager affair.

    Even the lesson at the end is telegraphed from the outset, but it comes off as just bad. They've introduced Belanna's temper problem from the first few episodes of the series, yet they try and tackle it now nearly 6 years on the ship? Even then, it's been relatively in check since those episodes.

    More so, I can't get past the the usage of the Maylons. Didn't they discover this species in the beginning of the season? Since then, Voyager has gained nearly 20,000 light years closer to earth as a result of Timeless and Dark Frontier. I would have to think that any species they met in the past are long gone by now. That's 20,000 light years people!

    Yet, we run into the Maylon's again. The episode before, they ran into the Think Tank... and they were aware of the Vidians. Can you believe it? The Vidians! That's season 1/2! There is no way anyone in this part of space would even know who they are.

    The writers clearly don't care about this sort of thing, and I can't ignore it while I watch.

    In the end, the series proves to be as directionless as ever. This is terrible character piece, and it doesn't contribute to anything about the big picture.

    Just terrible.

    I also don't understand how the Think Tank people knew about the Vidians, which is probably 30,000 light years because Kes took them further as well. That's nearly half the span of the delta quandrant. How is it that all the delta quandrant species know about each other from such great distances, but they know nothing of alpha quandrant species?

    I can understand species like the Borg popping up all the time - they have a massive 'empire' so to speak. The federation does as well, as does the Dominion. There are very few powers that rival these, as the delta quandrant has proven to be pretty back-water compared to alpha quandrant. There hasn't been any big species like klingons or romulans or cardassians - the major players. Honestly, any space-fairing civilization has been pretty pathetic in the delta quandrant, having 1 world most of the time. Whoppie. Yet, everyone in the same of 30,000 knows about them. What a joke.

    The Krenim, those xenophobic anti-telepaths from 'counterpoint', and those guys in "The Swarm" (season 3). All had GREAT empires spanning hundreds (thousands? millions? considering how hard it seemed to go around their territories, they must be pretty big) of stars consisting of only one species. (as opposed to the federation, which is only great because its composed of hundreds of species)

    If voyager has managed to cover this much ground in such a small amount of time using spacial vortexes and such, why can't other species do it? Heck, they know the quadrant much better than the voyager crew; they should be able to find the wormholes and such more easily than they can. Not to mention they've had a lot more time to explore than Voyager had.

    Nasa's got 2 probes that were launched in 1977 (named Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 - ha!), since then they've both gathered data about different planets in our system, and by 1998 Voyager 1 was departing the solar system. They're hoping eventually to get data about something called the "heliopause" at the outer edge of the system (whatever that means). Now imagine how much ground you'd cover, how much you'd explore with that amount of time AND ships that can go up to 21,000 times the speed of light? Why wouldn't some species know about another species 20,000 light years away? if you could sustain warp 9.9 the whole trip, it would take less than 20 years to get there. Can't sustain that speed? Need to 'refuel' or whatever? OK lets say 40 years. 40 years is nothing!

    To be fair, voyager has got most of it boosts through weird events, like getting kes' help and through time travel glitches and getting borg technology. The only vortex I remember was in night, and I think that was only a 1 or 2 year boost.

    Yes, the Krenim had an empire in various stages. Mighty convenient that they skipped it in 1 episode after the time was reset. I think when it was all said and done, they emerged with something that wasn't quite so big. Perhaps the size of the romulans.

    Nonetheless, there are loads of inconsistencies. The entire delta quandrant is totally unaware of the alpha quandrant. They haven't visited it. They know of no races in the alpha quandrant. Nothing. And yet we are to believe that the Maylon's have an empire the span of 20,000 light years. A civilization that can't even recycle it's own anti-matter waste. Not buying it. I'm really not.

    Ah, Torres and her anger management problem. Dr. Phil on Line 1! *rolls eyes*

    They're stuck on a vessel with a lethal explosion impending in less than three minutes. Harry "Can't-Get-a-Lock" Kim, of course, can't get a lock - now there's a surprise! And rather than pummeling the angry alien hellbent on the destruction of them all, Torres gets him to talk about his feelings in those 2.5 minutes they've all left to live. Jesus Harold Christ. Such idiotic scripts should be made illegal under criminal law.

    The rest of the show is O.K., if too New Agey meditation-heavy for my taste. 2-2.5 stars is about right. It is, however, FAR inferior to the previous episode, which very undeservedly got the same rating.

    I had a couple of problems with this episode: (1) Wouldn't it have been smart to send the Doctor over to the Malon ship since he can't be affected by the hazards over there? (2) Because of the toxic danger but also because of the danger of being exposed to vacuum, why didn't they wear spacesuits? (3) Neelix may be an expert on toxic-waste disposal (sure, whatever the problem at hand is, you can be sure Neelix has it on his resume), but is it a good idea to send a guy with one lung over to an environment where there are known breathing difficulties? (4) When they were evacuating the depressurizing deck, Chuckles gets hit by a pipe coming at him from the direction he just left. Shouldn't all the debris be flying in the direction of the hull breach? (5) Malon Guy's got medicine that'll fix up Torres. Sure, it's Malon medicine, but let's just assume it works on and isn't fatal to humans and Klingons. (I think it's plausible that the injections the Doctor prepared were calibrated for Malon physiology.)

    Undead toxic waste boogeyman yeahhhh!
    It's only interesting/funny because I'm drunk. In any other circumstances I think I'd definitely struggle to give it the 2.5 stars that it got.

    I have to admit, it had some genuine comedy (although unrelated to the main story) - the turtlehead quote and the gag reflex comments.

    That's about it though. Fun if you're hammered.

    Oh but I do have to add, is it just me or was Torres / Dawson ridiculously hot coated with muck, slime and sweat. YES.I.WOULD. !

    This show makes me want to play Fallout. The final boss was a Ghoul!

    David Forrest said: "This episode was very enjoyable to me, and I love Roxann Dawson. The last thirty seconds definitely would propel this episode to at least a recommended rating."

    Why? Just because she took her top off? :D

    At this point in the series run I'm really starting to get frustrated with the writers' blatant disregard for continuity. Wanna bring the Silver Blood Aliens back? Why not? I mean it will only require a few plot holes (make that gaping chasms) to pull it off. Oooh, how about a story about some toxic waste monsters? Sure, but ya gotta involve the Malon to make it work. OK, so we'll just ignore the fact that we've left them 25,000 light years behind. Yeah, that's the ticket.

    What bugs me the most is that the exact same story could have been told with a new alien race instead of the Malon. Why should the Malon have the galactic market cornered on industrial waste?

    What's more, is that this isn't even the worst offense. The Hirogen come back in season six ("Tsunkatse") and the Hirogen holograms are coming up...wait for SEASON 7! Gah!!!

    Maybe the Malon found another wormhole and are using it to dump their waste? Of course it's weird that there is another ship near that one while the other one was "private", but maybe it's a corporation running that wormhole and not just a single captain. It probably should have been explained, and it would have been easy to do so (just have B'Elanna drop a using wormholes when she wants to insult them).

    As usual, production values were fine. At this point in VOYAGER'S run that goes without saying.

    I did find it odd for them to be characterizing Torres they way they do here. I don't even remember Torres acting quite so out of control in season 1.

    When Tuvok says to Janeway that Torres is unpredictable, I felt the complete opposite. Torres, in Tuvok's mind, is filled with angry emotions and will lose her temper at the slightest provocation. How is that unpredictable.

    I also had to laugh at the "warm fuzzy" moment when Janeway tells Tuvok she won't be sending him over because she doesn't want Torres to think Janeway doesn't trust her. Just another example of the main characters doing whatever they want for the benefit of themselves and not the mission or the wellbeing of the ship and crew.

    Dawson does a great job as usual, but this is hardly a story which really needed to be told.

    Having Torres reflect on her violent act at the end of the episode is a mature handling of this kind of situation which is rarely seen on this show.

    @ Justin...

    The worst offense has to be S7's "Homestead", where we have a Talaxian colony at what must be almost the border of the Beta Quadrant...

    I agree 100% with Jammer about R. Dawson. In my opinion, she's the best actress on Star Trek and I'd have liked to see more about B'elanna.

    On top of that, she's a beautiful women... though, I don't really care about beautiful women. That's something that's always bothered me: all the women are (with very few exceptions) attractive. On the other hand, all the men (with very few exceptions) are not really handsome.

    If you're a man but no top-model, you have a chance of being hired. If you're a woman, you must be somewhat charming. I'm not a feminist, but if I'm not bothered by unattractive guys - if they are good actors - the same should be true for women, shouldn't it ? And if you don't agree, so let us have some good-looking men too !

    Sorry, that was my yearly ranting ;-).

    What the hell are the Malons doing out here? C'mon, it's just ridiculous. And, yes, even worse it the Talaxian colony in season 7. It's completely illogical plot holes like these that made Voyager much less than it could have been. That the writers and powers that be did not do due diligence to set up an even minimally consistent and rational show milieu exhibits a lack of respect for their audience's intelligence.

    Because Voyager was made for unthinking morons. Look at Michael up there - an example of Voyager's target audience.


    "The entire delta quadrant is totally unaware of the alpha quadrant. They haven't visited it. They know of no races in the alpha quadrant. Nothing."

    Not only that, but some of them seem to call their area "the Delta Quadrant" or have no problem adopting that usage when the Voyager people introduce it. "The Delta Quadrant" is an Alpha Quadrant designation. Suppose aliens showed up and said to us, "We're stranded here in the Omega Sliver" -- we'd be like, "This ain't the Omega Sliver; it's the Alpha Quadrant." (Or, "it's the Sol system.")

    Something about this episode reminded me of the classic Tom Baker years of Doctor way back in the 1970s, I can't quite put my finger on why but I got that similar vibe and atmosphere from somewhere. That season 2 episode with the robots (I believe it was 'Prototype'?) was a more obvious Vintage Who homage, I wonder if someone in the writing staff grew up watching Doctor Who!

    Anyways, it was another likably fun and stylishly charming episode that I enjoyed. Its' substance was engrossing without being deep, its' action fun without being tense, and overall it's very likable without quite managing to reach lovable. But for a standard adventure it does the job nicely, 3 stars would cover it IMO.

    On a side note, Neelix could really use a course in basic food hygiene! His hacking all over the food as he stirs it with his used spoon, dipping his fingers in and having that long hair swinging about unchecked...I'd take the replicators thanks, Neelix!

    I am glad that voyager used Neelix less and less as the seasons went on. i think we can thank Seven for that.

    but the gag reflex bit was funny. as so was turtlehead.

    yes, why couldnt have they just added this a few episodes earlier? not like they dont plan shows in advance.

    this was mildly entertaining. i would give it a 2 star..maybe 2.5 stars.

    @arachnea. Nana Visitor is no model. and the doctor in 2nd season of TNG...nuh uh.

    i like the comments about the "Omega Sliver." funny stuff.

    Not a perfect episode and the last bit was completely gratuitous, but I thought the scene where the room's filling with smoke and you can barely make out the menacing shadowy "bogeyman" was suspenseful and well-done.


    When the Hirogen were first introduced in season 4 they were shown to have relay stations that reached all the way to the alpha quadrant. I think it's safe to say that they are a widely traveled species.

    I don't really have a problem with the Malon or Talaxians showing or whoever showing up again ahead of Voyager. Why should we assume that all species gained warp drive when humans did? That's kind of arrogant.

    Besides, at this time in Trek lore, the Feds have listening posts in the Gamma quadrant. That's like what, 25,000 light years from Earth?

    So I just think this argument is a bit nitpicky.

    Well, Tom, if we go with that, then we might as well have seen Hirogen or Talaxians or Malon here in Federation, Romulan, or Klingon space by now.

    So far the comments have come up with a good list of ridiculous-bordering-on-criminal oversights by the writers but I think the craziest thing in this episode:

    A single Malon freighter exploding (everything within 3-5 light years dies) would be enough to destroy the entire Dominion fleet.

    This episode establishes into Star Trek canon that the most powerful weapon in the galaxy is a Malon Garbage Truck.

    I just finished watching this. I'm pretty sure I would have seen it before, but it was obviously so long ago that I don't remember.

    As I said in my review of "Faces," I find Roxanne Dawson to be probably the single most sexually attractive Trek actress I've seen; and I'd fairly happily watch B'Elanna for hours.

    With that said, this was by far the weakest B'Elanna episode I've seen. Yes, she's fiery, and I love that; but at the same time, temper still usually needs some sort of motivation. Here her temper seems purely arbitrary, most of the time. She's angry just because she's angry, and for no other reason.

    Anyone who's seen "Gravity," will also know how much irony there is in Tuvok teaching Torres anger management; Tuvok might be Vulcan, but it's still a true case of the blind leading the blind, there.

    There also wasn't enough action here for me, or at least not enough action that had a real point in terms of the characters or the story. I like action, but not when it is mindless, or occurs purely for its' own sake. Chakotay gets hit in the head, which doesn't really do much except maybe raise tension slightly, although you know that, as a regular character, of course he's going to be ok.

    B'Elanna attempting to reason with the alien, however, and plead with it before killing it, is a good example of why VOY has become my favourite Trek series of the lot. There was action in this show, and during a few episodes said action becomes fairly intense; but despite survival occasionally being an issue (although nowhere near as much as it should have been, I know Jammer) the characters' commitment to principle demonstrated that this was still genuine Star Trek.

    So yeah; Roxanne looking sexy is always a big plus, but I kept waiting for her to have an interesting character moment like she did in "Faces," and except for the brief conflict and flashback at the end, she never really does. It's disappointing.

    This one gets two stars from me, with an extra half star due to makeup making Roxanne look as though she'd just been mud wrestling. Yum, yum. ;)

    What I really can't stand is the fact that they apparently never DID give the recycling specs to the Malon government after the events of Night. What, that one Malon was a jerk, so they decided to screw the whole species?

    Given her sudden volatility and temper amidst a bunch of episodes where she was more or less normal makes this episode seem a bit out of place. This one seems like it was filmed right around the time they did Extreme Risk. It should have been a predecessor to it. At least then it would have segued into an ep that gave us an explanation for her sudden mood swings. And it would have also tied in with chuckles getting the letter about the whole end of the Maquis conflict that kickstarted her emotional nosedive in the first place. That actually goes back to S4's Hunters.

    And to answer Captain Jim's question: maybe the removal of her clothing and the sonic shower cleansing were to be interpreted as a 'casting off' of her old volatile ways. And a new B'elanna was to have emerged from the shower.

    Then again, could've been just because she took her shirt off. Either way I ain't complainin'.

    Since we never saw the Malon in their own sector of the galaxy all we have to go by are these guys that look like post-nuclear war survivors. They looked even worse off than the Vidiians.

    Voyager already provided them a solution for their theta radiation problems and the toxic buildup as a result of using their technology. Since they rejected it it's hard to muster any sympathy for them, like when the Malon explained to B'elanna his plight and how his son wanted the same job when he grew up. He doesn't realize that implementing Voyager's solution would mean his son would not have to put himself in harm's way. An occupational risk that no longer has to exist. But they need the work. I guess their government didn't have a New Deal program.

    2 stars. If this had aired before Extreme Risk it would explain a lot more. And I probably would have given it 3 stars just for the fact they dabbled with a little continuity. As it is I just have to wonder about her sudden emotional instability.

    Arachnea - Sun, Jan 20, 2013 - 7:19am (USA Central)

    "On top of that, she's a beautiful women... though, I don't really care about beautiful women. That's something that's always bothered me: all the women are (with very few exceptions) attractive. On the other hand, all the men (with very few exceptions) are not really handsome.

    If you're a man but no top-model, you have a chance of being hired. If you're a woman, you must be somewhat charming. I'm not a feminist, but if I'm not bothered by unattractive guys - if they are good actors - the same should be true for women, shouldn't it ? And if you don't agree, so let us have some good-looking men too !"

    Seriously? You think Janeway is attractive? Gag! You thought Kes was attractive? She looked like a little boy! That's pretty disgusting!

    On DS9 both Kira and Ezri Dax look like short haired lesbians and on TNG Crusher is just old! And don't even get me started about TOS. There are plenty of ugly women in Star Trek. I'd fuck very few of them.

    @John - I pretty strongly disagree with your swipe right/left assessment on most of those women, but you are mostly correct. The average man on Star Trek is just as attractive as the women.

    They certainly don't take the hot thing to the same extremes as the CW, but none of the TNG guys are bad looking men. And as attractive as they are Crusher/Yar/Troi are not super models (which in my book is not a bad thing, I don't necessarily like the super model look).

    And women are STILL hot for Patrick Stewart and he's 75 years old (and married to a 37 year old...)

    This episode would be better as a lead-in to "Extreme Risk" and would also make more sense if it aired much sooner (like just a few weeks) after "Nothing Human".

    I guess I don't care as much about the Malon being way out here as much as I do about the Malon still dumping toxic waste. As C Baker said, Janeway offered the technology to the one Malon guy back in Night. OK, so he was an unethical jerk, fair enough. But what's to stop her from offering it to anyone others they met? This episode strongly suggests that they aren't all evil strawmen, so I find it hard to believe no one would want the technology? Or is this more of the Trek silliness of thinking anyone who has the slightest interest in money or industry automatically is close-minded and eeevil? I mean, look how much its costing the Malon to dump all this toxic waste. If someone offered technology to a nuclear plant owner that turned all the waste material magically non-radioactive, don't you think that owner would jump on that opportunity?

    And it really shouldn't be a prime directive issue either. The Malon are advanced, they're warp capable, they're peaceful, they just haven't figured out this issue. We saw Picard helping out independent civilizations all the time, what's the harm in giving them the technology to convert theta radiation? I mean, surely Roddenberry doesn't think that, for example, the US shouldn't tell China about our ability to clean sulfur and other pollutants out of coal emissions, right? That would just be silly.

    Actually, my largest annoyance is that this is the most ridiculous "planet of hats" ever. When we first saw them, I was definitely intrigued. A gritty, amoral, industrialist society? No interest in niceties or conquest or peaceful cooperation or whatever? Maybe these could be what the Ferengi should have been! Instead, all we ever saw were the garbage dumpers, nobody else... What a narrow view of their society; why did we never see anyone else? Talk about a wasted opportunity.

    As for the episode itself, well, see my comments on the Fight. Exact same thing. A blatantly telegraphed, overly simplified "character piece" that comes out of nowhere for Torres. She was actually this belligerent in Season 1 (she punched out Carey in the second episode, remember?), so it would have worked in season 1 or 2. But being a model Starfleet officer for 4 years, without Janeway showing any concern, and now all of a sudden it comes to the forefront in such a blatant way? Sniping to a guest when Janeway is right there? Janeway being concerned with her actions on an away mission?

    Well executed, but an annoyance nonetheless. We have a pattern of the crew living in limbo, with character aspects coming and going randomly, but at least they are shown in an entertaining and well developed fashion. That's a lot better than early Voyager, which tended to be poorly executed with only half-thought out plots. It's a different form of turning off your brain and untapped potential, and probably a better form, but still not quite as good as it can be.

    Apparently every spacefaring species in the history of Trek has figured out how to run their ships and societies without becoming radiation poisoned garbage men. Even the Kazon, apparently, can do it. But the Malon, who apparently are advanced enough to go toe to toe with Voyager (as we saw in Night) can't even do what the Kazon know how to do. * cough * bullshit.

    Even accepting the ridiculous premise that the Malons can't figure out how to do what everyone everywhere can do, the concept is just plain dumb. Toxic waste disposal should not be an issue in the vastness of space for a species with warp drive. Unless theta radiation travels faster than light, it should be a non issue - just toss it into any old sun.

    I just feel with the Malon the writers had this allegory they wanted to go with to wag their fingers at us about environmental degradation or whatever and they just forgot to make the slightest sense.

    As for this episode, it was garbage, figuratively as well as literally. Dawson is as far from a good actress as I can imagine. Her alleged rage comes across as bitchiness more than anything. And the confrontation at the end with Mr. garbage radiation monster - what was the point of that? That she needed to control her anger? Apparently not. Pipe meet head. End of story.

    @Jason R. - As I understand it the Kazon robbed all their technology from the Trabe, their former slave masters (Very Game of Thrones).

    A better example would have been the Pakleds, who really are the Gobshites of the Galaxy!

    As someone noted above, pretty much every week the production values of these episodes are fantastic. Great atmospheric sets here and some wonderful FX.

    But writing wise this is just a mess. It seems to be a B'Elanna episode, but what does it tell us that's new or developing her character beyond 'B'Elanna gets angry and needs to control her temper'? Nothing. Indeed the conclusion seems to be that in failing to reason with the Phantom of the Opera at the end she's not angry when she clubs him with an iron bar. And then gets her shirt off for a shower scene. Sheesh. 2 stars.

    'Bout time we got back to Roxann. She's awesome.

    I like this one. Don't love it, but any episode featuring B'Elanna (almost) is a winner for me.

    Some side-splitting humor (even if it's only because of the source) :-)

    "Whatever you say, Miss Turtlehead."
    "As a rule we don't, but serving with Captain Janeway has taught me otherwise."

    Tuvok's humor seems to be pretty prevalent recently.

    Thank the gods for smoldering jackets. :-)

    3 stars, primarily because we get a whole episode of Roxann.

    Oh, we finally see a sonic shower actually work! :-)

    This episode is awesome. Yeah it's a one off Voyager adventure but god damn B'Lenna makes it worth watching. Watch this episode drunk and you'll totally enjoy it.

    Ugh. Another "B'ellana's angry" episode. Seems like I'm the only one, but god I hate that bitch.

    2 stars. Very middling. They had me curious about the monster but the reveal was underwhelming to say the least. The malon beyond "Night" have been pretty boring adversaries. It also didn't help that there was no suspense or sense of urgency which is vital in these jeopardy plots. Also as mentioned Torres anger management issues resurfacing seems inconsistent to her characterization.

    Why is it when there's an actor who's starred in a Next Generation episode that was awesome, they turn around and do a Voyager episode that sucks? If you're looking for a good Ron Canada episode - The Masterpiece Society was way better.
    This episode isn't getting me excited for the new Star Trek TV show I can tell you that much...

    Ron was pretty awesome as the Klingon lawyer in that DS9 episode as well.

    Yeah , I hate the continued disregard for distances as Voyager makes its way through the quadrant when they keep meeting species who are on short trips yet somehow 25,000 light years away from their home world. (these guys were talking about their kids like they would be back home in a few weeks). However, if I put that aside this is a good episode.

    I liked how the "evil aliens" were shown to be just normal family people like the rest of us; doing this garbage run to provide for the family or help save the planet. Voyager rarely explored the "other side" of the conflict.

    Dawson as an action star was pretty good in this show. She does look great with the arms showing. I would have liked to see more of her, however, Voyager did become the 7 of 9 show for the most part.

    The evil deformed crewman was a bit over the top at the end (I would have preferred an actual chemical monster or something).... however, it served a purpose to show Torres unleashing her anger and feeling bad about it after in the shower.

    I think it's safe to assume that some Delta Quadrant species explored & colonized space long before Voyager arrived by Caretaker; so why can't they already be somewhere tens of thousands of light years from home? The Talaxians had many years & generations to get to where Voyager drops off Neelix.

    And if the Malons traveled thousands of light years 'back' to where Voyager was in "Night", they can certainly travel 'forward' as well.

    "This episode establishes into Star Trek canon that the most powerful weapon in the galaxy is a Malon Garbage Truck. "

    Well, second most. Most powerful is apparently 1 Omega molecule. One of Voyager's silliest conceits was establishing so many ridiculously superlative phenomena.

    I think I remember reading someone doing a psychoanalysis of this episode, with the monster as id -- I read it years ago, and don't remember much. Anyway, here's my take, possibly informed by that: the teaser features the first genuinely sympathetic Malon characters we've seen, and establishes the importance of a happy childhood as the two Malon discuss what toys to get Fesek's child. Then after a rupture of containment, the teaser ends; when we come back, the B'Elanna/Tuvok scene establishes that B'Elanna, wounded over her pile-up of childhood and young adult injuries, takes her anger out on people who happen to cross her. B'Elanna is hostile to the Malon, but what she emphasizes repeatedly is her disgust that these people are dumping their garbage on innocent people rather than dealing with it. I'm sensing a theme. So B'Elanna reacts badly to the Malon partly because they remind her of her own problems (at least her problem-of-the-week), because she's in grave danger of dumping her own unprocessed garbage on anyone who happens to be nearby, when a rupture is ready and containment fails. This comparison comes to a head in the climax, when it turns out that the monster is a Malon who has been sufficiently poisoned as to "die" and then go mad with rage and want to kill everyone, and here B'Elanna articulates that she understands that kind of anger -- no longer fully separating herself from what she sees as the monstrousness of the Malon, even in its most extreme form. Tuvok also mentions, early in the episode, that anger can be a powerful tool if channeled properly, and so yes, B'Elanna ends up pouring out her anger on the diseased Malon in a life-threatening (lives-threatening) instance. And then she showers to get rid of the grime on her while she revisits her memories of the fight, and we're meant to see these two actions -- the processing of what just happened to her and the sonic showering to vibrate the dirt away -- as being the same thing. So this is a show about emotional waste management, about finding ways to remove the theta radiation of pent-up feelings without harming innocents, and maybe sometimes to use that as a power source. In addition to B'Elanna relating to the poisoned Malon directly, still feeling like an injured outsider all these years later, it also serves as a reminder that the parts of oneself that one doesn't want to recognize still live on and can end up causing considerable damage; the Malon ship is also in some ways analogous to B'Elanna, with the hidden creature inside being the congealed anger and pain she tries to deny until it continually sabotages the ship (her life) and threatens to hurt anyone near her, including those trying to help.

    On that level, the episode is a decent psychological study with a good central metaphor. The performances I thought were good, especially Ron Canada's guest turn as Fesek, and I like that he is rendered sympathetically throughout. The episode gives Neelix something to do in a way that's pretty in keeping with his character history and is not annoying. I also like that Voyager works on plans B and C while the Plan A goes on, suggesting a kind of competence and decent planning on the main staff; and I think also that this ability to make relatively cool-headed decisions contrasts with the difficulties B'Elanna is facing. There are two main problems I have with the show:

    1. B'Elanna has always had a temper and this is a consistent point that has been raised. However, the idea that in *this* particular episode, she is a constant live wire unable to control herself, to the point where Tuvok recommends pulling her from the away mission, seems a little out of nowhere. She's been on life-threatening missions before. Why is it that they're so sure that she's unreliable *now*? Relatedly, B'Elanna's frequent outbursts seem to be implausibly intense throughout the show. The episode just doesn't justify why her garbage is all coming out right now. This is as opposed to something like Day of Honor, which clearly identified an initial trigger and then showed her day gradually worsening, and even so her professionalism was not in question, so much as her failure to make sense of her personal life.

    2. It's kind of boring for some stretches and I'm not sold on its effectiveness as a horror story. The "monster" ends up not being that interesting except for what it tells us about B'Elanna, and the POV shots just seem silly.

    All in all, it's an episode with a cool character core idea, somewhat fumbled in execution by insufficiently justifying what makes B'Elanna so totally unreliable in this situation, as opposed to others -- and which is not all that entertaining for me. 2.5 stars, probably.

    As far as encountering the Malon again, it's a plot contrivance, of course. Although the first Malon they encountered, they only met because he had traveled through a wormhole, so he could have come from anywhere. That doesn't explain the second encounter though, which was still thousands of light years from where they are in this episode.

    And let me get this straight. Plan A is to send a bunch of people over to the ship to possibly die, which at least one did, and others nearly did. Plan B is to throw the ship into a star. I'm thinking maybe they got the plans mixed up.

    Also, this monster business. It's ridiculous. The Malon have heard of this 'mythical' creature before, and some even claimed to have seen it! Oh my! But wouldn't they notice a psychotic mutated crewman on the ship when they got home? Or notice that one of their core workers was missing? The fact that this happens to some of their crew and they don't know about it is beyond stupid.

    And really? B'Elanna gets angry sometimes? Really? No kidding! What an in depth exploration of her character!

    This episode is just dumb.

    1 1/2 stars.

    Mostly basic action adventure here with Dawson/Torres putting on a decent show given what she had to work with. She affirms Janeway's faith in her as Tuvok's faith in her wavered. The idea of disgruntled laborer wasn't bad either, otherwise the plot would have been razor thin.

    I get this is a Torres episode and it's about time. Dawson is a good actress and the fiery personality just comes naturally for her. She's supposed to get her anger tested here and maybe develop some control over it. Who knows if she improved in any way. What the writers intended for her character is fine -- for me, they didn't quite pull it off. But it seems they also wanted to play up this notion of "G.I. Torres" as also some kind of sex symbol -- this is where it gets dumb. Why was Torres in a tank-top while all the men were more fully clothed? And then there the shower scene at the end -- gratuitous. She could have her remorse etc. without disrobing...but ratings etc.

    As for the Malon again, I see it as a quandary for VOY: if it's like every week a new alien species comes along, it gets harder to care, some groundwork needs to be re-laid, different forehead/nose ridges need to be invented etc. It makes no sense that Voyager should be encountering the Malon here but at least there's some familiarity to build on. OK, so they're the toxic waste dumpers but there was an opportunity to do more with them here. Unfortunately, the episode is another twist on their toxic waste dumping.

    Why wouldn't the Voyager away team have protective suits when they go aboard the freighter? The whole idea seemed ridiculous at first -- the Malon themselves admit they can't deal with the sabotaged freighter but Voyager boards it believing it can do something about it. So there's plenty of fumbling around the vessel, giving Torres a chance to control her temper.

    As for the core laborer, this is like the worker going postal -- so that's all well and good as the unexpected element. Decent suspense with 7 saying he's approaching the team in the control room. Torres has her hero scene when she hits him with the metal rod and saves the day -- she's done this kind of thing before ("Revulsion" and even "Dreadnought"). I don't think she should have too much introspection to do for sending the core laborer to his death.

    Barely 2.5 stars for "Juggernaut" -- Dawson does everything that is asked of her well. It's just that the emphasis was excessively on action/adventure instead of character development. Didn't feel like there was very much to this episode. Have to also question this radiation dumping by the Malon, although they do develop a bit more as aliens here as we understand the core laborer phenomenon and a tad more about their homeworld.

    Skeptical said re:the Malon:

    "What a narrow view of their society; why did we never see anyone else? Talk about a wasted opportunity."

    Well...note dialogue from Redemption, written by Ron Moore, where he writes this dialogue:

    "You're a fellow officer and I respect that... but no one would suggest that a Klingon would make a good ship's counselor or that a Berellian could be an engineer. They're just not suited for those positions."

    Ron Moore is the godfather of the "planet of hats" on Star Trek.

    Ok. Read the review and comments already. So anyhow:

    A good episode, good exploration of how B'Ellana is trying to deal with her own "garbage." (You beat me to it, William B - notice too, not just the mention of toys and childhood, but the repeated comments about having children . . . another reference to growth, change, maturity.)

    I think B'Ellana continues to be touchy and her long buried garbage is surfacing for two reasons: the Maqui deaths and her relationship with Tom, which is going well.

    I do foster care. Guess what happens when a scared, angry, emotional kid finally, finally starts to feel safe and loved? It can be quite the roller coaster ride.

    The objections to seeing the Malons make no sense to me. We don't even know what part of the Delta quadrant they are from, since we first see them coming through a worm hole, no? Plus we don't know much about their tech or how long they've been space faring (hundreds of years? thousands?). Had zero problems with this.

    A great character episode that takes us down into B'Ellana's core. It's best to keep the plot fairly simple with this kind of ep.

    Well done.

    @Springy (not sure if you'll see this -- whether you're using the comment browser or not)

    "notice too, not just the mention of toys and childhood, but the repeated comments about having children . . . another reference to growth, change, maturity"

    I hadn't thought of that, but that's great.

    "I do foster care. Guess what happens when a scared, angry, emotional kid finally, finally starts to feel safe and loved? It can be quite the roller coaster ride."

    I hadn't thought about it. That's really interesting...and I think it makes a lot of sense that it can happen at any point in a person's life, if they've felt unsafe/unloved for a long time.

    And that does seem to be B'Elanna's issues -- that the point isn't that Voyager is a bad place for B'Elanna and that's why some long-buried things are coming back, but because it's a good place. The trick is whether she can deal with all the garbage without alienating Tom and the others, and it's really hard for her (and requires a lot of patience from them).

    I think a lot of the time, people who have it rough as kids deal by becoming precocious, successful, or by convincing themselves -- and others, even, if they are very good -- that they are doing all right, by burying, and they can maintain it for a long time, but it wears them down. It takes a lot of energy to keep the buried stuff buried. And eventually it is possible to start lashing out against certain people who deserve it least, because they are the ones who show some evidence of not hurting them, or stopping loving them...but it's also hard for the person to process it. Or people who are isolated for a long time, and seem to be able to deal with it, and then lash out when they do get close to other people...because they've also never really learned how to do that. B'Elanna makes me hopeful.

    William B, just recently discovered the comment stream.

    Yes, what you describe is exactly what happens . . . it's when things are starting to go really well that I can expect an explosion with the foster kids. It seems contrary, but it's not. I've gotten pretty good at knowing when to brace for impact.

    The whole picture is complicated these days with drug treatment, which can help when it allows a super-anxious kid to calm down enough to function and think, or hurt when it zombifies a kid into not feeling anything at all.

    But I digress. Yes, B'Ellana is a great character!

    @ navamske

    I agree-using the Doctor and Radiation suits would seem obvious-how the writers missed it, I don't know.

    I know Janeway has to use what she has, but if this is how B'lanna is after half a decade on the ship, I would have ordered her to have at least semi-weekly sessions with Tuvok on anger from day 1! How do people put up with that?

    I also agree with whomever said that the degradation of women is getting ridiculous. I know it supposedly wasn't played for seductive reasons, but there is no reason for us to have to see B'lanna get ready for the sonic shower (although the actual usage of the shower was cool)

    I honestly don't find any of the girls on Voyager that attractive except for Kes & Samantha Wildman, and for whatever reason they barely used her in the show, even in episodes with her daughter, but I still don't see the need to use them in this kind of fashion.

    @ C Baker-YES! Why didn't Voyager give the tech to them! They wouldn't have to use these toxic waste ships!

    I just finished rewatching this episode, and honestly, ignoring the obvious plot holes in terms of the broader show, I found it to be very enjoyable as a kind of old school action/thriller/sci-fi episode, elevated by a great atmosphere and environment, consistent tension, and very good acting by Dawson as B'Elanna of course, but also by guest star Ron Canada as Fesek. For a race that generally hasn't been that interesting on this show, he really helps to almost make them fully compelling. His presence was one of my favorite parts of this episode. But all in all, great entertainment taken on its own.

    I think Jeri Ryan was one of the sexiest, most attractive , and interesting characters of all the Star Treks. And that is among many other gorgeous actresses/candidates who played in Star Trek. Whenever seven of nine is the highlighter in an episode it is always good!

    This particular episode was ok but I have always found B'elanna's temper annoying and immature for a Starfleet officer.

    Dreadful. Dawson’s performance was the only thing that made it barely worth watching.

    I really like B'Elanna. Too bad the story is just an extremely lame version of Alien.

    1 Star.

    I’m with William B and Springy on this one. I think they’ve nailed the psychological core, which gives the episode some structure which bridges some of the (minor, in my view, for ST) plot holes. I don’t think it hurts to revisit B’Elanna’s demons if it’s plausible that she still harbors them (as I think it is).

    Aside from the all-too-obvious environmental message, I’m curious about “toxic waste” in space. As I understand it, most - maybe all - of space is toxic. Every star (never mind supernovae, neutron stars, pulsars, quasars) are sources of radiation which would be lethal to us, even through our atmosphere, if earth’s spinning molten iron core didn’t create a magnetic shield. We don’t really know how we’re going to shield spacecraft well enough to get humans to Mars in healthy enough condition to burrow underground to escape the same radiation which would kill them on the surface there.

    So I’m having a hard time understanding how we can pollute space, esPECially with radiation, given that space makes a helluva lot more of it than we do. So yeah - launch it into the gravity well of a star and forget about it.

    But I can’t find anything in real science about “theta radiation,” so it’s one of those Trek things we just have to accept and go with. But a “by-product of anti-matter reactions?” I thought the point of such reactions was that matter and antimatter were annihilated, yielding nearly 100% of the energy of both. No doubt radiation across a wide band is produced...but wouldn’t it dissipate rapidly in the vast expanses of space, contributing negligibly to what’s already zipping around there?

    FWIW, I didn’t think seeing B’Elanna’s bare back at the end was gratuitous or constituted any sort of “degradation” of women. I think it was necessary to contrast the dirt and grime she’d accumulated (both physically and emotionally) during her visit to the belly of the beast with the comparatively clean and unstained condition she might attain after her shower. It also serves to remind us of her vulnerability, and contrast it with the strength she’d shown in doing what had to be done to survive.

    That’s all compliments of Ripley’s similar strip-down toward the end of Alien - which is, yeah, yet more evidence of this episode’s debt to that movie. But I can live with that.

    It’s weird, the “regret” scene of Torres at the very end confuses me a bit. It seems to suggest a connection to her anger issue, which would make sense to bookend the episode, but it doesn’t.

    She wasn’t angry toward the core worker. She was understanding and tried to reason with him. She feels badly having to kill him because he’s a victim.

    The only way I can see the ending connecting to Torres’s anger issue is that the core worker is operating on pure anger, and defeating him is symbolic of her defeating her own anger. But viewing her that would make her look like a monster. Would make no sense.

    Oh my gosh, what an unpleasant episode. B'Elanna is a caricature of herself. Every single sentence she utters is suffused with rage; she spits out every single word that comes out of her mouth.

    Nice ass though...and the rest of all is forgiven ;)

    Neelix was also a pleasant surprise: He came across as constructive, professional, quick-on-the-trigger, and competent... - def. a far cry from the annoying bellybutton lint he's been for the past five seasons.

    This episode needed to be earlier in the season before Voyager made those big jumps in Timeless and Dark Frontier. Apart from that, I enjoyed it more than I expected, largely because it elevated the Malon beyond villains of the week who dump toxic waste. Glimpses of their society, their motivations for what they do and the presence of the Malon as allies of the Voyager crew are very much in keeping with Trek's habit of allowing us to understand an antagonist's point of view and sometimes bury the hatchet. The writers did the same thing earlier in the season with species 8472, and now we get to see the other side of the Malon.

    The moral of tonight's story: "If you suffer from uncontrollable rage, it's ok, because most of life's problems can be solved by beating someone to death with a rod."

    B'Ehlanna is angry! What an interesting, fresh character development.

    So the Malon are the "scourge of the quadrant"? Not the Borg, not the Vidiians -it's the race of mutated garbage men that are the REAL threat.

    I thought Voyager was going to give the Malon some environmental tech after "Night"? Was that ever mentioned again?

    Why is Neelix shoehorned into this episode?

    Wouldn't having the ability to dump toxic waste into any nearby star solve all of the Melon's disposal needs? I know the producers wanted to do a show with an environmental message, but they did absolutely nothing to establish the Malon as a believable society.

    Skuffle notes: "This monster business. It's ridiculous. The Malon have heard of this 'mythical' creature before, and some even claimed to have seen it! Oh my! But wouldn't they notice a psychotic mutated crewman on the ship when they got home? Or notice that one of their core workers was missing? The fact that this happens to some of their crew and they don't know about it is beyond stupid."

    William B has a very insightful comment above and it convinces me that there are some genuinely good ideas in this episode. Those ideas get drowned in an ocean of crap, but they are still there.

    Let's play "fix the episode":

    I like the idea of "emotional toxic waste." I like B'Elanna being the central character. I also like the character of Fesek.

    I don't like having a literal monster, B'Elanna being in constant "Hulk Smash!" mode, the idea of "space polluters", the inclusion of Neelix, or the violent ending.

    Start the episode with the Tuvok and Miss Turtlehead scene.

    Make this a planet bound episode. Torres is asked by the Malon to help repair one of their power plants. Torres is outraged by their polluting ways. She harangues a middle management type, Fesek, for his role in what's going on. He's at least somewhat receptive.

    Disaster strikes. Torres and Fesek are in a race against the clock to stop a total meltdown. As the story progresses Torres continues to press Fesek about his society's shortcomings. He becomes more and more sympathetic to her POV. As the show gains momentum and the tension increases, it becomes apparent that Fesek isn't just being influenced by Torres - he's also being affected by the radiation.

    The episode's climax takes place when Torres and Fesek make it to their destination. Fesek has become unhinged due to radiation poisoning. He is both mentally and physically damaged. He has taken Torres' advice about the need for societal change and combined it with his own pain and rage. He sees the faults in Malon society, and blames it for "forcing" him into a job where he has been harmed and has done great harm to others. Instead of preventing the meltdown, he believes that the only way the Malon will change is if they feel the consequences of their own selfish actions - he's going to let the reactor explode.

    Torres finally recognizes the wisdom of what Tuvok told her in the opening scene, She realizes that her anger, which she had thought of as "a useful tool" for most of the episode, is nothing more than emotional toxic waste; waste with which she has polluted Fesek.

    Our Trekkian ending: Torres does not, I repeat, does NOT beat Fesek with a rod to solve her problem. Instead, she talks him down. She opens up about her life and explains how her uncontrolled anger has hurt her and hurt the people she loves. She convinces Fesek that the best way to fight for change is to go public with what has happened to himself and let the people know what their pollution is doing to others. In the end, he agrees.

    /cue sonic shower scene

    Better? I don't know. But it did allow me to kill some time on a lazy Saturday morning.

    Bob said "B'Ehlanna is angry! What an interesting, fresh character development."

    Literally her whole persona is making bitchy remarks, threatening to break your nose and hating being Klingon. All of which gets tired very quickly.

    I do like how this episode demonstrating the parallels between B'Elanna's emotional toxic waste and the Malon's actual toxic waste. You can't dump your mess (anger) out wherever you want just because it's convenient. That negative energy will eventually start to affect everyone around, yourself included.

    I haven't read all the comments here (my apologies if this has already been said), but on a different review of this episode, the question came up about why the away team wasn't wearing environmental suits when they beamed over to the Maalon ship. I mean, wouldn't it make sense, considering the toxic/radioactive levels they were heading into? I know the obvious answer is that it gave the producers a chance to show off Roxann Dawson's body, but aside from playing into some fanboy's fantasies, was it really necessary?

    I'm afraid that the bottom fell out of Season 5 with this stinkerooni....I try to see the best sides of every episode, but this one is tough. The meditation scene with Tuvok is fine. The Neelux soup gagging scene with Chakotay is also fine. The core crew monster was revolting...not simply because he followed the worn-out disgusting mutant CHUD-archetype, but because he couldn't be reasoned with-- period. This blunted B'Elanna's attempt to find her better self and instead reinforced her return to anger, accentuated by a new variation-- blunt force trauma. Why no bookend scene with Tuvok you may ask? Using the lead pipe in the library by Miss Peacock is not his cup of tea. For retuning Voyager to early season 1, Juggernaut warrants 1.5 stars max. Did kids under 10 watch this violent garbage?

    "A scene early in the episode has B'Elanna being counseled by Tuvok on the finer points of meditation, etc., as Tuvok plays Yoda and offers B'Elanna insights like, 'The rage within you runs deep'."

    The reviewer might have expressed that better as "Within you the rage runs deep."

    In the episode "Juggenaut", the crew of Voyager solve the theta radiation threat from the Malon freighter by directing it into a star. If that is the way to solve a pollution problem, why haven't the Malon made use of stars as the depository for their waste products? Given the size of stars, even space going civilizations wouldn't produce enough waste to make a substantial addition to the star's mass (or energy output).

    I mostly dislike this episode because my two least favorite characters come off as useful and authoritative. The scene between them in the mess hall was great. Not just because of Neelix's gagging. But also because of how Mr. Weird-Rocks-Allow-Me-To-Talk-To-My-Insane-Grampa rolled his eyes at the Talaxian medicinal elixir. So hypocritical and disrespectful! What would gramps say?

    As I'm revisiting the series, I sometimes think Chakotay is my least favorite character. But then, when I'm actually invested in a scene (in which he's basically background furniture) Neelix will blunder in and re-take the bottom slot immediately. I actually kinda liked him in this one! Back to the bottom, Chuckles!

    The Malon ship exploding would destroy everything within 3 light years?? Does literally everything travel at warp speed in the star trek universe? Ion storms? Distortion waves? Explosions? I assume they meant that would be the radiation "kill zone" the same way a powerful supernova could irradiate life within 1500 light years after enough time..etc.

    Also it makes no sense how the waste disposal is such a problem for a society as advanced as the Malon. Just toss it into stars/black holes..etc. And if this waste is so dangerous that an explosion of one ship could destroy everything within (laughter) 3 LIGHT-YEARS, how does their planet safely deal with it before its loaded into ships? What "landfill" is it sitting in before that? Also in such a Utopian society, who would choose to work such a miserable career? And who would do so for profit when money probably doesn't exist in a society like that? Also, why aren't these ships automated? I didn't even realize how stupid this episode and Malon theme was before reading these comments, good job guys! But yeah I am sick of the term "light years" being used like we use miles. Just because star trek has warp drive doesn't mean a simple explosion travels at warp speed and obliterates everything within a light year. Physical phenomenon like Shockwaves, ion storms, energy fields, explosions..etc don't just casually cruise through space as if they had their own warp drives, that's just lunacy. 3 light years means it takes 3 years to go that distance even at light speed. No pure anti-matter explosion could cover 1% of that.

    just rewatched this last night for the first time since, goodness, 2010 I think. It was much better than I remember- or maybe I've watched enough Voyager and Enterprise since then that my standards have lowered, lol.

    I wish we had seen more of the Malon after this- Fessek really sets up the contradictions of Malon society in a way that could have been its own season long arc. I'm ultimately happy with what we see here on screen because it humanizes them while also condemning the exploitation of their system so effectively.

    I like this episode, but it could have been truly great if it took a few risks. After a season in which Neelix was somewhat relevant, finding a new niche among the crew as the resident baby sitter in "Once Upon a Time" and did his best to reach out to Torres in "Extreme Risk" in a way that could have deepened their friendship if followed up on, I loved him in this episode. Though mine is apparently a poisonous love, because I must say Neelix should have died here! The point about Torres' emotions being useful to protect her and others - a necessary correction to early seasons' tendency to play them for laughs- would have hit so much better if the stakes were higher- if B'eLanna was mourning Neelix at the same time she was protecting Chakotay, this episode would have been a really meaningful shakeup. Who knows- maybe that could have been an opening for one of the Equinox survivors to become a regular, or for Kes to come back, but whatevs. Enough about what could have been.

    One fun curiosity I've noticed is that while I don't particularly dislike B'elanna as a character, I'm very rarely on the same page as Jammer with what makes a good Torres episode. (I love Day of Honor and enjoyed Dreadnought, but I can't stand Barge of the Dead. I like Extreme Risk, but find "Faces" the most racist thing the franchise has done since "Code of Honor". Lineage is tied with Timeless for best Voyager episode in my estimation, just fyi.

    B'Ellana to Tuvok: "You as a child, those pointy little ears, you must have been cute."

    Me: "He still is! 💕"

    I am not a fan of this episode, but it was done very well. (I just don't like the plot itself)

    @Elise I genuinely want to know: how was Faces a racist episode?

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