A Semi-Hater Revisits Voyager

Discussion in 'Voyager' started by TheGodBen, Feb 9, 2009.

  1. Bertie

    Bertie Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Ooo, Ooo, I got the joke. ;)

    For what it is worth, Voyager and BSG both had controversial final episodes, but they were controversial for entirely different reasons.

    Voyager's finale was mediocre -- but it was mediocre in the same way that the whole show was sometimes mediocre. We've been through it all before -- too easy, no hard choices, little to no use of continuity, blah, blah, blah. Would that the writers had been able to rise above some of that for their final effort, but alas instead we got another "Dark Frontier" -- kind of neat, and actually pretty re-watchable for its awesome production -- but there's no "there" there.

    BSG's finale was, well, a topic for another board, but it was controversial in a way that no other episode in the show's run was controversial...
     
  2. Gep Malakai

    Gep Malakai Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I recognized it. You're a horrible person. :lol:

    You should also know that I'm not merely a beloved poster on this board, but also Jamahl Epsicokhan's lawyer. You'll be hearing from me shortly.
     
  3. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    My name is Godfrey Steven Benn, I live in Dublin, and my lawyer's name is Dermot Ahern. :shifty:


    I didn't intend to make such a big deal about Endgame, I thought I would say that my complaints about the episode are the same as those made by everybody else ever since the episode aired and I had nothing new to bring to the conversation. But then everybody started piling on expectations so I decided I had better try and give you all a show. Here we go:


    Endgame (*½)

    When I was new to this board I made a criticism about the title of this episode, I said that "Endgame" was a lazy title and all the other Trek finales had much more poetic names. It was pointed out to me then that the endgame refers to the final moves in a game of chess as your grand strategy reaches its climax and your pieces prepare to take the rival king, and as such it was a fitting title for this episode. Well... no. :wtf: One of the most famous rules in chess is that once you take your finger off a piece you can't move it back again, you make your move and you have to live with the consequences. When you find yourself losing the game you shouldn't get upset and demand to reset the board so you can take that move again, that's cheating. You also can't replace all your pieces with queens in order to assure victory, where's the fun in that?

    Issue number 1: Time travel

    I can see what they were going for, an All Good Things style look into the future of these characters. But the very nature of this plot means that this is not the future of these characters, things are likely to turn out very different now that Voyager returned home 16 years early. And the way that this episode decides to use time travel as the means of getting Voyager home stops me from routing for that cause. You can't change history just because you want to, you're not allowed to play at being a god, so I don't want this plan to succeed, I wanted this plan to fail as soon as I heard it.

    The plan also fails to hold up to even moderate scrutiny. If I am to accept that you should be allowed to alter history, and that Janeway has a device that seems to allow her to go anywhere at any time, why should I support a plan that will save 22 lives? Why doesn't she go back prior to Wolf 359 and destroy the Borg cube before it has the chance to assimilate Picard? Why doesn't she go back and save 7 million people during the Xindi attack on Earth? Why doesn't she save hundreds of millions of lives by preventing WW3? When you think about the episode like this it adds a selfish element to a plan I already find to be grossly immoral.

    But why doesn't Janeway go back to the events of Caretaker, use the array to send Voyager home while she stays behind in her shuttle to destroy the array? What about the events of False Profits? She could have shown up in time to prevent the Ferengi screwing up Voyager's attempt to get home through that wormhole. Why not travel back to the events of Timeless and figure out a way of making the slipstream conduit stable? Or steal a few Borg transwarp coils and give them to Voyager after the events of Dark Frontier.

    Basically, I want to know why Janeway doesn't care about Lt Carey.

    Poor Lt Carey, he's not a part of the family. :(

    As opposed to the casualties which happened before now, such as, oh.... Lt Carey. :wah:

    Janeway's cup is more important than Lt Carey. :wtf:


    Issue number 2: The Borg

    The Borg are a popular species and they bring in good ratings, but this is the finale of the show, there's no need to fall back on them here. As others have said, why didn't they try to bring the show full-circle by bringing back Kes and Susperia? TNG began and ended with Q's trial of humanity while DS9 began and ended with Sisko's Prophet arc. Voyager began with the Caretaker and a good moral dilemma, it ends with the Borg and time-travel with some lip-service to a moral dilemma.

    I'm tired of The Borg, I'm tired of the Borg queen, I would have much preferred an ending which tried to mirror the beginning of the show somehow. The Borg aren't even used particularly well here, they're just a standard threat that stands in Voyager's way.

    You could have sent a cube or 13 to assimilate Voyager and take Seven back. You're not a very smart queen, are you?

    Noooo! There's 100,000 people aboad that cube! You blew them up, you monster! :wah:

    Seven knows about transwarp hubs, she knows they're vitally important, she knows there's only six of them... but she had to take a good look at one of them before she could figure out what it is? :wtf: She couldn't have taken a guess as soon as she realised there were over 40 Borg ships in the nebula?

    I don't think I need to point out why this is stupid. :rolleyes:


    Issue number 3: The cake wasn't a lie

    Great, now the episode completely undermines the moral dilemma they were trying to create, it is like Night all over again. :( For the last 20 minutes there has been option a) destroy the hub and stay in the DQ, and option b) go home while leaving the hub alone. But now there's a magical option c) which contains the best parts of options a and b but they also get to destroy the Borg unicomplex for MASSIVE DAMAGE! Where's the moral dilemma here?

    Add to this the fact that Voyager last attempt to inflict damage on the Borg (Unimatrix Zero) didn't seem to do anything, so why should I give a damn about this hub when it will probably end up the same way?


    Issue number 4: No homecoming

    I, for one, would have loved to have seen Voyager's triumphant return home, and to see the crew's emotional reunions with their families. But there was not time for that, they blew up the Borg sphere and hey set a course for Earth. The End.

    What did the Klingon sub-plot achieve apart from filling time? That time would have been far better utilised by giving this show a proper ending rather than cutting to black in the middle of the story. (Okay, so The Sopranos did that in their finale, but at least they were blatant about it and added a lot of symbolism into the final episode so that the audience could make up their own mind.) Here it feels like the writers couldn't be bothered to write a proper ending for the characters so they just ended it. Say what you will about the BSG finale, but they had about 40 minutes of screen-time after the big action finale to say goodbye to the characters, and while I've seen some people complaining about that I think that was time excellently spent.


    Issue number 5: Chakotay/Seven

    They still have no chemistry that I can see, and watching Chakotay pleading with Seven to not give up on their relationship is awkward. I can't buy into the notion that these two are going to fall madly in love with one another and the actors don't seem to believe it either. As the for piano music which kicked in whenever they had a romantic moment, it was laughably bad. :lol: How did the music for this episode win an emmy with the cheesy music that sounds like it should come from a bad sitcom from the 80s?

    No Chuckles, I'm pretty sure that somebody from the future can tell you what's going to happen in the future.


    Various other issues

    Unfunny.

    Unfunny.

    Awkward and unfunny.

    47 Borg vessels, you numpty!

    When I was in my early twenties, on a trip to East Africa, I saw a gazelle giving birth...

    If Captain Janeway gets to the AQ then Admiral Janeway wont exist to travel back in time and none of this will have happened anyway. The plot makes no sense.


    The good

    Even if the plot is stupid, it is well-executed. Very rarely did I get bored while watching it, and in the final battle things did get blowed up really, really good. So I'll give a point each to the production staff and the special effects guys for making the show look so good. I also liked the Tom/B'Elanna stuff in this episode, it highlighted how the two of them have grown as people over the seven years. It wasn't stellar, but it worked well enough for me.


    I have to admit, there were times when I thought I would never see this day, particularly during season 3, but I have finally reached the end of Voyager. I had seen most of the episodes before (I missed two or three from the early seasons) but I hadn't seen the show in its correct order, so watching it properly has given me a new perspective. Before I start Enterprise I am going to do two more posts about Voyager; my regular season review and a final post explaining my opinions on the show as a whole. Hopefully those will be done by the end of the week and this thread can finally be allowed to fall off the Voyager forum and into internet oblivion where it belongs. :)
     
  4. rahullak

    rahullak Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Dublin. The truth at last. ;)

    When you have the authority, you have the responsibility. Much like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Sherlock Holmes. Oops...did I just compare you to a literary genius? :wtf: Silly me. ;)

    That's almost a succinct review of the whole show itself.

    Little did the "Trek fandom" realize that long before a little bird called Abrams came along, the "timeline" had already been drastically altered at least once onscreen.

    Huh? Lt. who? Carey? He isn't part of the "family". He is therefore expendable. Don't look at me like that. I'm just following Janeway's logic as you can see below.

    Amen.

    The whole episode (or at least part of it) took place in the holodeck. A Mr. Kim's Day Out classique adventure, not for the faint-hearted. :p

    You mean the same way Ensign Harry Kim won a "Best People of the Year" award from some magazine during the show's run that basically saved his ass from being fired off of the show?

    Chuckles can't tell future from past from present.


    Even if it did make sense, this review would still get 0 stars. :p

    Time for the season review. Swell! Time for the final post on the whole show. Fantabulous! Time for Enterprise to be slaughtered. May she rest in peace.

    This thread deserves to be one of the crowning jewels of your literary career. I humbly request it be placed on your website where it shall reside forever more as a tribute to the greatest Trek show ever, Star Trek: Voyager

    GodBen I must say, I thoroughly enjoyed your trek through Voyager. I have not been a regular poster here. It's been a pleasure. Looking forward to your next few posts here and then "Once More Unto the Breach....."
     
  5. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    TheGodBen! :mad: My name is TheGodBen.

    Seriously though, thanks to everyone for reading and putting up with me, it encouraged me to continue through season 3 and it stopped me from skipping certain Irish-themed episodes.

    Yup, 125 pages of spelling errors, poor punctuation and simplistic thought-processes; this thread is up there with The Da Vinci Code. :techman:
     
  6. rahullak

    rahullak Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    ^
    THEGodBen . Noted!

    Yup, that's basically how the Da Vinci Code was written. Spot on!
     
  7. Dane_Whitman

    Dane_Whitman Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I want to thank you, it's been one helluva read. I finished rewatching VOY myself yesterday, and while I remain convinced VOY is my least favourite Trek show, I tried to focus on the good stuff instead of the frustrating aspects and I can say overall I had a fun time rewatching the show.

    I'll be onboard for your ENT reviews.
     
  8. Vic Sixx

    Vic Sixx Commodore Commodore

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I also wanted to say thanks, I've been lurking here every day since you started it, but enjoyed it a lot. I admit you faked me out, I'm not a fan of BSG and I've never heard of Jammer.

    Thanks.
     
  9. Smiley

    Smiley Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I've enjoyed reading this thread, even though I disagree with many of the reviews. I hope your overall experience was a good one, TheGodBen.
     
  10. Pemmer Harge

    Pemmer Harge Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    This has indeed been a great thread, I salute you! But I'm still a bit disappointed you were only joking about giving Survival Instinct six stars...
     
  11. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Admiral Premium Member

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    This has been an interesting thread. It was fun reading, even if I disagreed with most of it, but still fun. Thanks for doing it. :)
     
  12. Silvercrest

    Silvercrest Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    It's been a terrific and fun thread. I agreed with the vast majority of the reviews. Thanks, TheGodBen! Looking forward to Enterprise.
     
  13. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    TheGodBen, you pretty much seem to have thoughts that mirror my own with regards to Voyager and Enterprise, so I look forward to your Enterprise reviews. I think it's shocking how quickly I gave up on regularly watching Voyager and when I gave up on watching "special episodes" (I'm not sure if I saw an episode between Dark Frontier and the finale). At the very least, you've inspired me to watch Voyager again and catch up on the episodes I missed. I hope you can live with yourself :p

    BTW, I would have given Endgame 2 stars pretty much for the reason you gave it 1 1/2. It was at least entertaining. It cheats in many ways, it doesn't really give a proper send-odd to anyone, and it's full of logical contradictions. But there are worse ways to spend two hours.
     
  14. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Misery loves company. ;)

    And thanks again to everyone for their kind words, hopefully most of you will continue along in the Enterprise thread, but if not then I can understand why.


    Once more with feeling:

    Season 7 Review

    [​IMG]

    There's a very standard looking graph; it goes up and down, up and down, I don't have all that much to say about it. The average score for the season was 4.792, slightly below average but up a tiny bit from season 6. The trendline is going down very slightly, but like season 5 this was a very consistent season in terms of quality. It certainly wasn't as bad as I remembered it.

    [​IMG]

    Your standard bell-curve with a bit of a tail on the high end. There was a lot of average or "meh" episodes, but there was no episodes I considered to be outstandingly bad this season, and Author, Author stood out as being very good.

    13 episodes were below average, 4 were average and 7 were above average, which almost makes this season seem more terrible than it is.
    Best episode: Author, Author
    Worst episode: Q2


    The Writers

    I'm only going to take a look at this season's results this time, the final results for the writers will come in my overall series review. It is interesting to note that the writer I considered to be best this season was James Khan with a score of 5.75, but since he only wrote those four episodes in all of Voyager's run he falls one short of being included.

    [​IMG]

    The best included writer this season was Raf Green who returned to write three more episodes that gave him a score of 5.667. After him is Bryan Fuller who bounced back from a disastrous result last season to score a respectable 5.333 out of 3 episodes. Sussman joined the staff this season by writing four episodes with Phyllis Strong, a writing partnership which I believe will last throughout Enterprise's run, and he scores an average 5. Biller took over as head writer but only earned a score of 4.75, while Michael Taylor takes another knock back to 4.5. Robert Doherty recovers a small bit of ground to score 4 out of 5 episodes. But the two losers this season were Brannon Braga and Joe Menosky; Braga only wrote two episodes to score 3.5, while Menosky mirrors his debut on the show by only writing 1 episode this season and that episode scored a 3 as opposed to a 7.


    What Would TheGodBen Do?

    Brannon Braga and Rick Berman are off in their offices together giving life to Enteprise and Joe Menosky quits because he is tired of me making fun of him even though he's actually a good enough writer. Berman fears Kenneth Biller because his elbow clicks, so he hires me as the new head writer. How would I have done things differently?

    At this point in the show it would be far too late for me to remake it in my image, the best I could hope to do with this final season is to get in touch with these characters and give them a proper send-off. I think that the final episode should have devoted 20-30 minutes of showing Voyager's triumphant homecoming, we can watch Voyager land in San Fransisco properly and see the crew disembark into the arms of their families and friends. One thing I thought I was going to hate about season 7 was the two-way communication with Starfleet, but that actually threw up some good scenes and I think that is one thing the final few episodes could have used more of as a means to wrap up the character arcs.

    I do like Brannon Braga's idea of the final season being a tragic one for Seven where she ultimately has to sacrifice herself to get Voyager home. There is something poetic about the girl who never wanted to be human eventually becoming one of us until she makes the noblest decision she can make. It is one of the things I sort of like about Data's death in Nemesis, but the way it was executed in that movie made the whole thing seem kind of stupid. And if it would have achieved anything then at least it would have replaced the awkwardness of C/7.

    There were some things about season 7 I really liked for the most part, the big one being Shmully's arc about fighting for holographic rights. It could have used more work to explain some of the details about how it is that holograms manage to become sentient, and Flesh and Blood desperately needed a different second part. Another good thing about season 7 was the B'Elanna/Tom coupling, which I admit I was dubious about at first but it turned out some of the best episodes of the season. These two characters came a long way since Caretaker, I would have never believed when I first saw Voyager that they would have ended up as they did, but it worked quite well.


    In Summation

    This was the season where I gave up on Voyager while it was on air, and it gets a lot of criticism from fans of the show, so I was surprised to find that it wasn't as bad as it could have been. It had too many filler episodes, and there did seem to be a lack of ambition, but there was some very nice character pieces mixed in that helped to buoy the season up. Not a bad season, but a little disappointing overall.
     
  15. The Grim Ghost

    The Grim Ghost Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    It was a fun ride THEGodBen. I'm kind of sad to see it end and I won't be following you over to your Enterprise reviews. I'll be back when you tackle DS9 or TOS though.

    From the beginning I've felt like you were too hard on the show. But by your standards you were fair. You are a self confessed continuity/arc whore (I say that with love pal ;)) and Voyager has serious problems with one, and very little of the other.

    I think these are legitimate complaints, but the show just wasn't set up to be like that. Voyager was never a really deep show in the same way something like DS9 was. For me, Voyager was more of a fun show and I enjoyed the switch to a more episodic format after DS9's arc heavy run.

    Despite my disagreements with you, I've really enjoyed reading these and I appreciate all of the thought and time you put into this. This was always the 1st thread I would check when I logged in, and I'll miss that!

    I wonder if someday you might soften your feelings about the show a bit or see it in a better light? Only time will tell. Let's see your take on the show again in 10 years! That should be enough time for you to recover.
     
  16. startrekwatcher

    startrekwatcher Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I have to give him credit since he did well with so few episodes as compared to Nick Sagan in season five. Plus I knew his writing from Melrose Place where he wrote some of my favorite episodes.

    A lot of fans were jumping for joy when they heard B&B were leaving VOY to Ken Biller this season. I was never a fan of his as a writer and as a showrunner not too crazy about that either.

    This season needed some big arc to drive it to its conclusion like the Unimatrix Zero rebellion and the homecoming. It was ridiculous that they didn't mine the one or two big ideas that were actually decent by turning them into arcs rather than trying to squeeze the last of their creative energies into the multitude of filler episodes that couldn't justify their existence in the season.

    At the very least they could have devoted the last six episodes to a homecoming arc.

    DS9 still has the best final season which was its best season overall in my opinion when it comes to Trek shows and one of the best final seasons in sci-fi outperforming nBSG, The X-Files etc. "All Good Things" is still the best series finale with "What You Leave Behind" is a close second. Voy's final season might be a tad better than TNG's.
     
  17. Frazzled

    Frazzled Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I agree with Startrekwatcher - DS9 has the best final season. I don't even really like DS9 very much, but boy did I enjoy those final few episodes. Makes me want to weep when I think of how good Voyager, which I generally love so much more, could have been. Hey ho - from such disappointments spring masses and masses of fanfic!

    THEGodBen - I agree with your summary of endgame, all except your Homecoming point. I used to think that it would've been great to see them disembark, but now I've decided it's perfect leaving it to the imagination. Besides, in my opinion treklit totally screwed the Homecoming, I hated that book - at least it's not Canon, onscreen such rubbish would be.

    Can I also add my appreciation of TGB here? I haven't agreed with more than about half you've said, but you've really made me laugh, thankyou! I'm disappointed it's finished!
     
  18. Pemmer Harge

    Pemmer Harge Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Now here's where I really disagree with you. I've heard this suggestion before and I flat out hate it! Why should Seven have to be noble? I don't want the abnormal person to have to die so the normal people can live and I really think that if someone has to make a noble sacrifice it's just too easy for it to be the one person who has no loved ones back home, the person who wasn't desperate to get to Earth anyway. I'm very glad they didn't decide to go down this road.
     
  19. kes7

    kes7 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    QFT. Why should Seven sacrifice herself just because her parents were criminally negligent and let her get assimilated by the Borg? Don't you think she suffered enough with the memory of all that she did as part of the Collective? And all the ongoing medical crap she had to deal with due to her implants? And the fact that most people didn't truly accept her (at least not for a while)?

    I think Seven sacrificing herself would have been really cheap -- just a suicide.
     
  20. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Ken Biller wasn't that great a writer on Voyager, but he wasn't awful, and I think the same can be said for his tenure as head writer. But they had to hand it over to him, he was the next rung down after Braga and they couldn't hire somebody else to do the show just for one year. I wonder what that felt like for him, to know that he was in charge for the final year because everyone above him buggered off.

    It stems back to something Data said in Time's Arrow; he found it reassuring to know that he would die some day because that made him feel more normal. Dying is normal, it is going to happen to every one of us, so having Seven die would be the ultimate act of normalcy for her character, it would make her more human in my eyes.

    As for having nobody caring about her back home, that doesn't matter too much because it would have a huge impact on the crew, particularly Janeway. The crew are the ones we got to know over the last seven years so seeing them react to Seven's death would have been more powerful than watching some random characters we've not seen before reacting to it.