A Semi-Hater Revisits Voyager

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

  1. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I didn't realise that 'Genesis' was held in such low regard. I've always viewed it as scientifically implausible, but aside from that, it's well paced, it's got cool monsters, the lighting is great, and there's actually a lot of effective suspence.

    Basically it's everything the remake (Macrocosm) wasn't.
     
  2. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Genesis is better than Macrocosm alright, but that's not difficult. I don't hate Genesis myself but I can understand why some would and I don't see it as anything special.


    Before and After (***½)

    I'm surprised this one didn't blow me away considering its reputation. It's a good episode, very enjoyable to watch for the most part, but the episode didn't build to anything and the character stuff is a bit hampered by the fact that it isn't really "our" Kes going through this experience.

    The story is very good, and there is some great character scenes early on between Kes and Tom, and the Year of Hell scenes are good. But when Kes reaches the "present" the episode suffers a little from exposition and babble of a technological nature, the character story gets a little lost in all of this.

    Maybe people love this episode because we get to see a future for Kes on Voyager that we wont get to see on the show, and I can understand people wanting to see that, but I would have enjoyed it more had we seen Kes' past before she joined Voyager. Unfortunately all we get to see is 30 seconds of her with her father and then she's a baby.

    And the episode ends with a joke about time, which is the worst way to end a time travel episode. :rolleyes:

    I don't want to sound negative about the episode because I really did enjoy it and found it to be good fun, but it's not the knockout episode I had hoped it was going to be. Maybe my expectations were too high?
     
  3. Praetorian

    Praetorian Captain Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I suppose so.

    The greatest appeal of this episode to me it's its quite original concept. But there's not much characer insight or any deeper meaning, and once you know what is going on it loses some steam..but I'll be damned if it wasn't a fun and fascinating ride!
     
  4. Jaespol

    Jaespol Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I hadn't really taken that much notice of Kes up until "Before and After" but did afterwards for two reasons 1. I really enjoy the episode, 2. She gets new hair.
    It sounds really shallow but seeing Kes at the height of her beauty in this episode really made me enjoy the episode even more. I could ignore some of the things that might have made the episode a little better- some tighter writing and direction perhaps purely because we got introduced to this Kes

    [​IMG]

    and I really started to take notice because I just thought she looked stunning.
    And I think you're right in a way that this episode is special because it gives us a look at a possible future with Kes that we never got. It was a really great episode to get before she left because of this.
    I still don't know what the hell happened at the end though although I loved the cheesy joke in the very last scene with all the crew looking on as if to say "That's our Kes." It was cheesy but a good kind of cheesy.
     
  5. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Admiral Premium Member

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    But it was our Kes. She has those memories, and even at the end she was like "There's no time like the present." She got to see what her life could be like and I think it changed her.

    It's Star Trek, that's a given. ;)

    What more of the past could they tell though. She grow up on Ocampa, was one of the first to make it to the surface, and really wanted to explore her haritage and the special abilities that Ocampan's had.

    I thought it was a great book-end.

    Oh well. Glad it got at least 3 stars I guess.
     
  6. Jaespol

    Jaespol Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    It would have been nice to have her flash back to being taken by the Kazon, I agree it would have been good to see more of her early life but no episode is truly ever perfect.
    As for the episode not building to anything, it was originally planned to build to a much longer and different "Year of Hell" but alas Jennifer Lien was fired.
     
  7. tomalak301

    tomalak301 Admiral Premium Member

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Now that would have been cool. I have wondered more about the Back story between the Kazon, Neelix, and the Ocompans which seemed a bit muddy.
     
  8. M

    M Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I always loved Before and After. Mostly because I love Jennifer Lien/Kes and am a fan of weird time travel episodes – if they are done well. The premise of this episode feels very original to me, which is always a plus.

    But upon rewatching it the other day I couldn't help but notice some things that bug me. For one thing, how exactly does Kes travel through time function? Because the episode itself is rather inconsistent in presenting her journey. For most of the episode it seems like only her consciousness is traveling backwards. Yet there is one scene in sickbay later on where Paris watches how she slowly disappears – which would suggest that her whole body is traveling.

    Maybe I'm overthinking it, but I'm also not quite sure if I get what exactly is the reason for her time travel. Is it the Doc's experiment in the future or something that the Doc does in Kes' present? And why at the end does she return to her time? And why doesn't she have any memories in the future? Is it because of the Morilogium?

    But, as I said, I really enjoy this episode. It's interesting to see what Kes' future could have looked like. It's certainly a lot better than what we got (The Gift and Fury).
     
  9. Jaespol

    Jaespol Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    LOL, I really think its best not to think about the story too much.
    I was equally confused by Kes seemingly disappearing in sickbay.
     
  10. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Kes was totally hot in the end of the third season. I've long believed that if she hadn't been made to look like a boy for two and a half years, she would have lasted the seven years.

    IIRC, it was only Garratt Wang being named in some spurious beauty magazine that saved him from the chop.
     
  11. neogothboy74

    neogothboy74 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Not I. Season 4 is one of my two favorite seasons of Voyager, and a great season of Trek IMO. I also think seasons 5-7 are more enjoyable than Season 2-3 (I rather like Season 1 where the characters were written as being sane). My only real problems with Season 5 - 7 is that they just feel extremely uneven. Production wise, the show looks better than ever though.

    I also agree that 'Favorite Son' is another example of Voyager sucking beyond the telling of it.

    Agreed. The episode has minor flaws that slightly detract from the episode, but the emotion of the episode, Jennifer's performance, and the beginning of the end for Kes, and the changes we see her go through, and the begining of her final journey is powerful enough for me, that those flaws don't detract from the experience for me...which is unusual for me, but I'm maybe one of the few who was happy with the fallout from this episode. I see 'Before & After' as an essential Voyager episode. And how many Season 3 episodes can claim that? There are actual consequences both subtle ("The Gift") and direct (Kes's style change, "The Year of Hell") from this episode IMO, and there is a degree of continuity between this episode and later episodes that served this episode in ways not often seen on Voyager, especially up to this point. I like it. :)

    While I loathe the 'Fury' episode, and I'm barely able to stomach it (even with the retro-continuty of the 'String Theory' novels that explain how & why that wasn't Kes in that episode) - I love 'The Gift'. Love it. The very first time I saw 'Before & After' I remember thinking that Kes had lived her life...a normal happy life all the way through to it's natural conclusion, and that every second after this episode should be treated as a gift. I thought if the writers handle Kes correctly this will mean a big shift in her character. I mean, she just lived a full healthy life, then traveled back in time with much of her memories intact. We see a physical change in her character (her hair) which is something I thought that the writers couldn't mess up (and they thankfully did not)...and soon after this Kes's powers (seen previously in the series) went into overdrive in ways that couldn't be explained. I know they don't say it's because of her experiences here, but they don't rule it out either and I always interpreted it thusly. And when she finally leaves in the episode "The Gift" I took the title as a layered meaning - the gift that Janeway is giving to Seven; the gift that Kes is giving to the crew during her departure; and the fact that this is the payoff for Kes's gift of life - her cheating death in 'Before & After'. It's like she was living on borrowed time ever since that episode, and when her time comes around again she's completely at peace with it. I thought it was breathtaking, and is one of my favorite moments from Voyager. It's also nicely balanced with 'Before & After' in which we see Kes experience all the things she was likely to have experienced with Janeway and crew, and this moment in which she will leave them for a very different adventure, which makes it impossible for me to begrudge Kes's choice to leave; she's already lived this life once before - which affects what comes after. Add to that, 'The Gift' is balanced by the introduction of Seven and there's all kinds of sybolism of the circle of life and all that (one member of the family leaves and another one arrives; one wanting to be more and the other afraid to be less), and I loved all those parts too; 'The Gift' just works for me. One of my favorite Treks of all time. But 'Before & After' set the stage for what was to come rather brilliantly IMO, even if it was unintentional.
     
  12. Jaespol

    Jaespol Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I think so too

    This

    [​IMG]

    > than

    this

    [​IMG]

    Both are pretty but latter day Kes was much more eye catching :drool:

    Edit- Its a pity the events of this entire episode get erased by Kes leaving the ship prematurely.
     
  13. The Grim Ghost

    The Grim Ghost Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I think she is quite beautiful both ways. I do like the short haired look (I just love short hair on women. I saw Superman II at a young age! Ezri also comes to mind :drool:)

    But I think the longer hair is more striking and flattering.
     
  14. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    'Before and After' was a good premise that felt a bit distracted and a bit rushed, but is still good overall. I agree with GodBen's and NCC-1701's assessments.
     
  15. Tomalak

    Tomalak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Sure, short hair can look great too. The problem was that awful wig that made her look like a blond Donny Osmond, and that unflattering costume.
     
  16. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Real Life (***½)

    It's amazing how the little things annoy me. During the final scene where Belle dies, Dr Kenneth Shmully (henceforth known as K-Shmull) pulls out a tricorder and spends ten seconds scanning her to check that's she's really dead. I found that distracting and it ruined a great emotional scene, so it lessened the impact of the death. Combined with the fact that we'll never see K-Shmull's family again and the episode doesn't even think about addressing the impact of this death beyond the final scene, this episode loses some of its power.

    But overall I found it to be pretty good, K-Shmull and his family at the beginning made for some humorous scenes, and his attempts to relate with his family after B'Elanna changes the program make for some good character moments for K-Shmull. I found most of this episode enjoyable.

    Then there's the b-plot where Voyager encounters blah blah blah and explores blah blah blah shuttle gets stuck blah blah blah moose testicles blah blah blah blah. To be fair, this weird sci-fi plot didn't annoy me too much, and the special effects were cool so the shallow side of my brain enjoyed the pretty colours. It was standard fare as far as sci-fi plots go and it at least tried to tie into K-Shmull's story at the end.
     
  17. Jaespol

    Jaespol Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    Real Life annoyed me and I felt it was ruined by the manipulative, unrealistic and mean-spirited ending. Seriously, what is the casualty rate for Pirizzi squares anyway? I really doubt many people die playing that game but conveniently the doc's holo-daughter manages to die after only two days? The statistical probability of that happening must be infantesimal and I just couldn't get over how ridiculous and emotionally manipulative it all was.
     
  18. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    This episode really needed a follow-up. I mean, the Doctor (you realize, don't you, that when you say K-Shmull, it makes me think of 'K-Fed' and I don't WANT to think of K-Fed) has experienced this traumatic event and should be persuaded to continue this - in real life (no pun intended), you can't just shut the program off after the end. Not to mention, part of me wants to see this family continue and the Doctor go for a 'take the family to work' day.

    And all of this holo-programming stuff for the Doctor really makes me wonder why no one ever thought to program a holographic staff - make them interns that the doctor teaches so he has a medical staff and doesn't need to draft Tom for his medical assistant - in situations where Tom would be needed in Sickbay, they'd also need him at the helm, and what happens in Sickbay if anything happens to Tom?

    EDIT: To Jaespol, and I'm willing to be corrected if I'm wrong, but I believe that what happened to the Doctor's daughter was that she was playing without safety equipment and taking more risks. I have an aunt who is living with the consequences of not doing that while bike-riding, so I know what it's like - my aunt is essentially confined to a wheelchair after she crashed into a tree and hit her head. It was before I was born, so I'm fuzzy on the details behind it, but those 'statisical probabilities' mean jack to the people it does happen to. Life's one big crap-shoot, and the snake eyes come up more often than one might think.
     
  19. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    I have to agree here, as soon as parisi squares is mentioned somebody is going to get hurt. The game seems to be more dangerous than Russian Roulette.

    I don't want to think of him either, but if they're not going to give him a name then I'm going to and it is my duty as a viewer to give him the most humiliating name possible.
     
  20. startrekwatcher

    startrekwatcher Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: A Hater Revisits Voyager

    "Real Life" was a very average episode. I wasn't pulled in by the emotional manipulation. It failed miserably to bring me to tears and I'm a big old marshmellow who gets all emotional at the drop of a hat. The family scenes of trying to be "Leave it to Beaver" and then dysfunctional were obviously intended to be cute and funny but I found them to be absolutely boring. If I wanted to watch an actually clever and funny family sitcom I've got Roseanne.

    Then you've got the perfunctory technobabble-laden B-plot that is just there to pad out the hour and you have an episode whose only interesting contribution to the series was Torres' neat one-time hair braid.

    Overall another weak outing from Jeri Taylor.