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Old March 3 2009, 10:02 PM   #136
TheGodBen
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

JustKate wrote: View Post
I think both sides needed to learn from each other, and we didn't get that, as far as I can remember. I know they are out in the middle of the DQ, but they still have to learn the Starfleet way because ...what else have they got? That Starfleet ship that they're on is the only piece of home they've got. What's Janeway supposed to do? Command it as though it's a Maquis ship? I don't think so.
But they aren't a military vessel anymore, they are a civilian ship on their own mission to get home. I'm not saying they should all be walking around in their underwear, they need to keep some level of order and command, but they don't need to strictly follow the rule-book. Ron Moore suggested, and I agree, that by the time they got home they should be their own culture with their own rituals. Instead they were a Starfleet crew through and through, even the people who weren't in Starfleet.

It is like that in the new BSG series, the society they are now at the end of the show has evolved from what they were at the beginning. I'm not saying that Voyager should have been as dark as new BSG, but Voyager becoming its own culture would have been nice.
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Old March 3 2009, 11:01 PM   #137
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

See, I just don't see them as a "civilian" vessel. I realize their primary mission is to make it home, but they have - certainly Janeway thinks they have - a responsiblity to Starfleet even though they are way the heck out there.

Anyway, if you have a Starfleet captain...well, she's going to be a Starfleet captain. That's her training, that's her experience, and even if it gets modified slightly as the years go by (as it certainly should - you're right there and I don't think enough of that happened during the show's run), that's the kind of captain she's trained to be. There's an old saying: There's no such thing as an ex-Marine. In my fairly extensive experience, this is at least somewhat true, and sometimes it's amazingly true, particularly for career Marines. I think you could exchange "Starfleet captain" for "Marine" and it would still be true.

You put a Marine colonel in charge of a troop of Boy Scouts who have somehow become lost out in the wild, and while he will (hopefully) modify his command style based on the fact that he's leading kids instead of Marines, he will still be a Marine colonel, because he's a Marine colonel in his soul. That's my experience, anyway. That stuff isn't on the surface - it goes down deep. I expect it goes down deep in Starfleet, too.
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Old March 3 2009, 11:01 PM   #138
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
JustKate wrote: View Post
I think both sides needed to learn from each other, and we didn't get that, as far as I can remember. I know they are out in the middle of the DQ, but they still have to learn the Starfleet way because ...what else have they got? That Starfleet ship that they're on is the only piece of home they've got. What's Janeway supposed to do? Command it as though it's a Maquis ship? I don't think so.
But they aren't a military vessel anymore, they are a civilian ship on their own mission to get home. I'm not saying they should all be walking around in their underwear, they need to keep some level of order and command, but they don't need to strictly follow the rule-book. Ron Moore suggested, and I agree, that by the time they got home they should be their own culture with their own rituals. Instead they were a Starfleet crew through and through, even the people who weren't in Starfleet.

It is like that in the new BSG series, the society they are now at the end of the show has evolved from what they were at the beginning. I'm not saying that Voyager should have been as dark as new BSG, but Voyager becoming its own culture would have been nice.
The Maquis only made up less than a tenth of Voyager's crew and in Battlestar Galactica's case you're talking about 39,000 people there's only about 150 people onboard, the need to stick to the rules becomes all the more important, it's less of a society and more of a large group.
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Old March 4 2009, 02:08 AM   #139
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
Learning Curve (*)

I hadn't seen this episode in years and went into it having no preconceptions or memories from it.

Worst episode of the season.

The story idea is good; Maquis crewmen need help fitting in. The execution is TERRIBLE. Firstly, crewman Dalby is completely in the right; Starfleet regulations don't apply out here and he shouldn't be chastised for trying to fix a problem before it gets worse.
I disagree. Dalby was not in the right. His attempt at repairs caused other systems to malfunction because he didn't communicate what he was doing. Sure, it was great he wanted to fix the problem but not letting anyone know what he was up to could have had serious repercussions.

In order to make him seem like the bad guy they write him as a complete ass. However, the coveted GodBen Award for Greatest Ass of the Season™ goes to Tuvok for making people run for 10km without telling them that he turned up the gravity. If I was Dalby I would have taken off my backpack and used it to beat Tuvok to death.
This is typical "basic training" stuff. I'm guessing the Starfleet crewmember had to endure similar sessions when they first entered Starfleet.

This is not a Starfleet ship anymore! You are not in Starfleet, your crew is not Starfleet, your mission is not Starfleet. Why adhere to rules and regulations which don't apply anymore in your situation? The Enterprise was less rigid than this and they were the frakking flagship!
Actually, it is. That is how Janeway and Chakotay agreed to run it. Again, I'm sure the Starfleet crew on Enterprise had to endure similar training.

In fact, I rather like this episode. It one of the few that show the tension between the two crews and addresses some of the issues that would naturally occur when you take an undisciplined rebel group and try to make them part of a highly-training and highly disciplined Starfleet crew.
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Old March 4 2009, 02:34 AM   #140
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
JustKate wrote: View Post
I think both sides needed to learn from each other, and we didn't get that, as far as I can remember. I know they are out in the middle of the DQ, but they still have to learn the Starfleet way because ...what else have they got? That Starfleet ship that they're on is the only piece of home they've got. What's Janeway supposed to do? Command it as though it's a Maquis ship? I don't think so.
But they aren't a military vessel anymore, they are a civilian ship on their own mission to get home. I'm not saying they should all be walking around in their underwear, they need to keep some level of order and command, but they don't need to strictly follow the rule-book. Ron Moore suggested, and I agree, that by the time they got home they should be their own culture with their own rituals. Instead they were a Starfleet crew through and through, even the people who weren't in Starfleet.
Uh-oh, it finally happened. The moment of disagreement!

They are a still a Starfleet and therefore non-civilian crew because Janeway and Chakotay sat down (off-screen) and (presumably) got everyone to agree to it. The 'mission' may be theirs, but the majority of the people onboard are Starfleet officers and expected to behave as such. If you think about it, since Federation citizens are said to 'work to better themselves and the rest of humanity,' working to get home isn't that far off anyway.

To paraphrase what Lee Adama said to the Commander in the initial BSG miniseries, either they obey the law and she's the captain, or the law means nothing and nobody has to give a damn about what anyone theoretically their 'superior' says. Frankly, I think there's more logic in at least using the Starfleet framework to maintain order and civility given their situation, but there could also be a lot to be learned from ignoring certain Starfleet protocols. We see them struggle with this occasionally, but not nearly enough IMHO.

It is like that in the new BSG series, the society they are now at the end of the show has evolved from what they were at the beginning. I'm not saying that Voyager should have been as dark as new BSG, but Voyager becoming its own culture would have been nice.
It could have happened that way, and I tend to agree it might have been much more interesting had they at least explored the 'option' of being a non-Starfleet crew, but they didn't. To a degree they have a sense of 'family' but I'd hardly say they have their own culture.

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Old March 4 2009, 05:33 AM   #141
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
Learning Curve (*)

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Old March 4 2009, 03:33 PM   #142
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

Praetor wrote: View Post
Uh-oh, it finally happened. The moment of disagreement!
You can prepare for this moment for weeks but it still hurts when it happens.

Let me explain my point about Voyager not being a part of Starfleet anymore since it has become a point of some contention.

If Picard break some Starfleet regulation such as the prime directive then he has to justify that with Starfleet Command, and they have to decide whether he can keep his command. If Janeway breaks the same regulation then she has to justify it with her crew and they decide if she gets to keep her command. Picard can't make the decision to land the Enterprise on a planet and settle there because the ship and crew are a part of Starfleet and they will send other ships after him if he tried. Janeway, with the support of her crew, could make that decision if she wished.

Being part of Starfleet means that authority comes from outside the ship, but on Voyager authority comes from inside the ship.

They made a decision at the beginning of the series to follow Starfleet rules and regulations, but that doesn't make them a part of Starfleet. When the Kazon took control of Voyager they could have put on some uniforms and decided to act like a Starfleet crew following Starfleet regulations, but that would not make them a part of Starfleet. The very fact that Janeway had the decision as to whether they should be a Starfleet crew shows that they no longer were one.

Janeway can forgive terrorists and make them officers. She can make a cook serve as an ambassador. She can make alliances with alien races. She can get rid of the uniforms. She can start a cock-fighting tournament on deck ten. She can execute someone for looking at her funny. All she needs is for the crew to agree with her and she can do what she wants with the ship. Starfleet crews can't do these things because Starfleet has a system in place to maintain rules and regulations. Voyager has self-appointed rules which just happen to be the same ones that Starfleet has.

I'll let the immortal Apollo finish for me. Take it away, Lee...

Apollo wrote:
I'd say we're very forgiving of mistakes. We make our own laws now, our own justice. We've been pretty creative at finding ways to let people off the hook for everything from theft to murder. And we've had to be because... because we're not a civilization anymore. We are a gang. And we're on the run. And we have to fight to survive. We have to break rules. We have to bend laws. We have to improvise.
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Old March 4 2009, 04:05 PM   #143
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

I agree that they could have looked at their situation that way, GodBen, but they didn't have to. Your scenario (of deciding to consider themselves a civilian ship) is a perfectly valid one, but I think what the Voyager officers and crew actually did is valid as well. They decided to remain a Starfleet crew, not because if they broke the code, Starfleet Command was gonna get 'em, but because they wanted to - at least the majority did. They looked at their options, and this is the one they chose.

They were...Starfleet by choice. They were on the honor system.

It's not unprecedented, even out here in Reality World. When people were transported from Britain to Australia as punishment, they could have done pretty much anything they wanted - they were cut off from England by distances that at the time were almost as though they were on another planet - I think it was something like a 3- or 4-month voyage (a very expensive 3- or 4-month voyage) over a big ol' dangerous ocean. But they didn't. The society they ended up creating was a lot closer to that of distant England than it was to anything happening in the hemispere in which they found themselves. They even built English-style houses and English-style gardens. They to a certain extent tried to recreat England in the Southern Hemispere, or so I've read, and they kept this up for quite a while. I understand that for a very long time, it was common for Australians who had never even seen England to still refer to it as "home." Over the decades and centuries, it's changed a lot, of course, and I would be astonished if modern Australians (even those of English ancestry) think of England as home - but it took decades and centuries for that change to occur.

This is true for the U.S. and Canada as well - we've had more time to evolve, plus there was that whole war for independence thing to spur the U.S.'s development on, but still, our two societies are a lot closer to Britain's than they are to, say, the Eastern tribes of North America or the Plains Indians.

Voyager didn't have to maintain its experimental isolation nearly as long as Australia, the U.S. and Canada. Is it really so unlikely that they would have decided to stick with what they know can work rather than try some experiment? If the journey had really taken decades, or a lot of the leadership had died or some other major shifts in power and personnel had occurred, maybe that attitude would have changed more quickly. I do think that would have been a valid scenario for the writers to take. (Though I'm not sure it would have been very recognizable as Trek.) But I think the one they chose is valid, too. Maybe that's where we disagree.

Last edited by JustKate; March 4 2009 at 07:12 PM. Reason: Revised a sentence
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Old March 4 2009, 07:27 PM   #144
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
Praetor wrote: View Post
Uh-oh, it finally happened. The moment of disagreement!
You can prepare for this moment for weeks but it still hurts when it happens.


Excellent follow up post, by the way.

I don't want to commandeer your thread or anything but since we are getting your revisitor's perspective it seems worthwhile to get this out of the way.

So, if I'm understanding you correctly, you're not saying that they should have just said 'we're not Starfleet, to hell with the uniforms' and so on, but rather than by virtue of their situation to maintain a functional structure as they did, they are basically 'by the people, for the people' and on their own from Starfleet authority? So the decisions Janeway makes, while coming from a Starfleet perspective must intrinsicly be decisions that also reflect the will of the crew, and in that sense, making their own decisions, they are technically just a bunch of civilians on a Starfleet ship, not answering to Starfleet but to themselves, with Starfleet trappings?

You're speaking more of the absolute truth of their situation rather than the way they choose to behave (i.e., as a Starfleet crew)?

If that's the case, then I can grok that perspective.

But I agree with JustKate that they were essentially on the 'honor system.' You have to remember that (with the exception of some of the Maquis, who seemed to lack some of the more evolved Federation sensibility) these people are still super-developed 24th century people who 'work to better themselves and the rest of humanity,' and therefore even with the Starfleet rulebook thrown out the airlock, the moral decisions they make are likely still not far off from what the rulebook would have them do. I think, though, that after seven years in the Delta Quadrant, had they endured real hardship, it might have been interesting to see just how long their evolved sensibilities would have held up.

It would have, however, been interesting had they actually explored this more on the show itself. (That should really be the 'Voyager' motto.)

It will be perhaps worthwhile to track this as we follow your reviews of the series. I have a sneaking suspicion (from my cursory memory of the series) that the only person who may appear to 'waver' from time to time will be one Kathryn Janeway.
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Old March 4 2009, 09:33 PM   #145
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

"Get the cheese to sickbay!"

That quote alone should warrant two starts.
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Old March 4 2009, 09:35 PM   #146
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

I like to add some comments about "Learning Curve" as well. I find it a good episode. I'll give it 3 points out of 5.

I liked Dalby, Chell, Henley and Gerron. They were good characters and I would have liked to see more of them in coming episodes.

It would have been interesting if their "education" had been followed up in some way. Could Dalby change from being simply a rebel against everything to a responsible crewman? Did he get along better with Tuvok in the future? What about Gerron? Did his personality develope as well and what about Henley and Chell?

Fortunately those characters show up in the books "The Final Fury" and "Marooned" where they got a lot of action.

As for their training, I do agree with those who state that Voyager was a Starfleet ship. It was a deal which Janeway made with Chakotay when the Maquis joined the crew. However, I do think that some of the Starfleet rigamarole could have been dropped and as a matter of fact, it loked like it wasn't as strict all the time on Voyager.

I remember when I watched the episode the first time. I was really p***ed off with Tuvok then. I thought he acted like a bully. I hope that this military bullying is gone and forgotten in the 24th century. It was ridiculous to force Chell to demagnitize the transporter room (or what he was doing there) with that tiny instrument, it didn't serve any purpose. Neither did the complaints about Gerron's earring (Ro Laren was allowed to wear her earring on the Enterprise), Henley's scarf (which was only decorative) and Chell's amulet (which couldn't be seen at all).

However, Neelix did advice good old Tuvie not to be so rigid and it looked like he took that advice.

As for the subplot about the cheese, that was actually fun, although a bit exaggerated and gave us the wonderful phrase "Get the cheese to sickbay!"

As for "Jetrel", that episode is definitely one of my favorites, mostly because of Neelix's background story. Suddenly the rather clownish Neelix is revealed as a character with a very tragic background. The confrontation with the man who invented the weapon which killed his family is a great idea from the writers which brings us a very interesting scenario. The whole interaction between Neelix and Jetrel is brilliant from beginning to end. I must also state that I find Jetrel and intersting and tragic character as well. I couldn't help feeling sorry for him too even if I really understood why Neelix hated him. As a matter of fact, deep down inside Jetrel really regretted what he had done.

To this day, I really wonder if Neelix really forgave him or if he just said it so that Jetrel could die in peace.

There were some criticizm in previous posts to the Kes-Neelix relationship. I must state that "Jetrel" is one of the episodes where the relationship really works. I like that scene when Neelix reveals that he wasn't fighting with the army, instead he deserted from the army because he didn't want to fight in a war found unjustified. Neelix blames himself and calls himself a coward. The Kes ask him what the penalty was for deserting. Neelix's reply is "death". Kes then asks him if it was cowardice to risk his life for something he believed in. A great scene.

As for the dream Neelix had, it was a good nightmare. I have had similar nightmares as well (but not about that particular situation).

I'll give "Jetrel" 5 points out of 5.
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Old March 4 2009, 10:43 PM   #147
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

JustKate wrote: View Post
Is it really so unlikely that they would have decided to stick with what they know can work rather than try some experiment?
Oh, I'm not disputing that, if I had been Janeway or Chakotay or just some random guy on the ship then I would have decided to go the Starfleet route as well.

But think about that for a second; they made a conscious choice to be a Starfleet crew and the follow Starfleet rules and not be a Maquis crew or a civilian crew. Picard never made that choice, the Enterprise was a Starfleet ship and he couldn't choose otherwise. The very fact that Voyager chose to be a Starfleet ship shows that they weren't in Starfleet anymore, they were on the outside wanting to be in.

They have the luxury of relaxing the rules a little. I'm not saying that they should be allowing people to paint "FRAK EARTH" on the walls, but they don't need to force Gerron to take off his earring. The only rule they would be breaking is a uniform code which doesn't really apply in the DQ. Voyager is more than just their workplace, it is their home now.
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Old March 4 2009, 10:49 PM   #148
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

^ I agree about the earring. That was just silly. If Picard could let Ro wear her earring, it seems to me a little leniency would have been nice on Voyager, too. I think the writers foolishly thought that nobody would notice this inconsistency. What a bunch of maroons!
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Old March 4 2009, 11:09 PM   #149
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

GodBen wrote: View Post
They have the luxury of relaxing the rules a little. I'm not saying that they should be allowing people to paint "FRAK EARTH" on the walls, but they don't need to force Gerron to take off his earring. The only rule they would be breaking is a uniform code which doesn't really apply in the DQ. Voyager is more than just their workplace, it is their home now.
Ah, it seems we still are on the same page then.

Indeed, the earring incident is very illustrative of what you're talking about. In the military (the modern military at least) such conformity is designed to 'humble' trainees and inspire camaraderie among colleagues and loyalty to superior officers. Their situation, having to not take orders from Starfleet to go on a mission every week, makes that very blind loyalty rather unnecessary.

Voyager: A Starfleet ship by the crew, for the crew.
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Old March 5 2009, 12:51 AM   #150
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Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

Praetor wrote: View Post
Ah, it seems we still are on the same page then.
Order is restored to the universe!
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