Observations, rewatching Season 1 for first time in a while

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by JirinPanthosa, Sep 23, 2018.

  1. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I slowly started a Voyager watchthrough a while ago, and it's the first time I've watched in a few years.

    Most of the episodes so far were about as I remember, only when I saw Prime Factors, I couldn't believe how bad it was. I remembered liking the episode. Every line of dialog in the episode was cringe-worthy. I looked up the writing credit and the only other episode he wrote was Unforgettable. In the entire episode where wasn't a single line that seemed like natural real human speech (Originating from humans or otherwise). It wasn't a bad idea, having Voyager wind up on the receiving end of the prime directive for once, but the execution is bad even by Voyager standards.

    Then, State of Flux was as good an episode as I remember, even a better one. But it strikes me this time how much of a mistake it was to have Seska escape the ship. She would have been so much more interesting sitting in the brig, subtly trying to sell the rest of the crew on her philosophy of establishing a base of power, manipulating Chakotay, maybe having a Silence of the Lambs style episode where her expertise is needed for something.

    One thing I forgot or maybe didn't see it that way at the time is 'Alien Simpleness Syndrome'. This is not something unique to Trek, as shows that aren't in space have a similar problem with the human guest stars. All the aliens we meet seem like just a little dumber than the heroes at all turns. Or maybe a better word is 'Intellectually helpless'.

    Aliens are presented with some unique thing that makes their customs cause a dilemma for Voyager, and they either push on it with no self awareness, or they have such weak convictions that they can't wait to be morally led by the first outsider they meet. Maybe this comes out of the feeling of the 90s that 'Our culture and belief system is the only possible best one and all those other cultures just need us to generously offer it to them'. But in 2018 it really stands out.
     
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2018
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  2. shreefe

    shreefe Ensign Red Shirt

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    I love the second half hour of Prime Factors. It cracks me up. I particularly like the scene wherein Torres just shoots the... thingmajig... with a phaser.

    I agree with you about Seska though -- it was disappointing to just have her beam away. She would have been better to stay on the ship, as you wrote. I'll take it a step further though -- she should have been Bajoran in truth. Nothing was really gained by her being a Cardassian. I think keeping her as a Bajorian villain would have been a good idea.
     
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  3. thribs

    thribs Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Just ignore that torpedo line. they can make more.
     
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  4. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    ^I consider that line to be true at the time it was spoken (which is episode 5, they hadn't been long in the DQ). However, I'm assuming they gradually got better in self-reliancy skills ... eventually they could even build the Delta Flyer.
     
  5. Four Lights

    Four Lights Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Big European convention I'm going to in a couple of weeks, so have decided to be brave and attempt a complete rewatch. I remember at the time of broadcast wanting so much to like this show, and briefly in season 3 and certainly season 4 that faith seemed to be getting rewarded. Am just dreading the moment season 5 begins though. Braga's cack handed schizophrenic remake of Janeway from motherly likable leader to barking, obnoxious, scenery chewing, fembot is going to kill me inside. Was never able to rewatch those dreadful last 3 years previously.
     
  6. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I've found seasons 5 and 6 to be my favorite in previous viewings. I'm not sure I see those changes in Janeway
     
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  7. Farscape One

    Farscape One Commodore Commodore

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    One thing about season 1 that I thought stood out was the amount of space dwelling life... the nebula in "THE CLOUD", the photonic lattuce in "HEROES AND DEMONS", the Komar in "CATHEXIS", the creatures in "ELOGIUM", the twisting phenomenon in "TWISTED". (Yes, the last two aired in season 2, but I always count them as 1st season because they were produced at that time.)

    It really gave the Delta Quadrant a unique identity, and a way to really set it apart from the Gamma Quadrant of DS9, which seemed to focus more on aliens having a much higher level of technological achievement... Tosk and the Hunters of Tosk in "CAPTIVE PURSUIT", the Wadi in "MOVE ALONG HONE", 'Pup' from "THE FORSAKEN", the Parada in "WHISPERS", the guy in "SHADOWPLAY" who created a whole colony of fully sentient holograms, and of course the Dominion.
     
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  8. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Cathexis was better than I remember it being, but of course it's the episode that introduces the "Wide beam dispersal", which leads you to ask in almost every other situation, "Why didn't they think of using wide beam dispersal"?

    And Jetrel gives us the side of Neelix we should have seen more of. Coming from a conquered planet where his family was ethnically cleansed should have informed more of his choices than it did, and maybe even made him identify with the Maquis given what the Cardassians did to Bajor.
     
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  9. Janeway_74656

    Janeway_74656 Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Couldn't they have just blown up Seska's escape pod? Because that's what I would have done.
     
  10. Farscape One

    Farscape One Commodore Commodore

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    I like to think the reason wide beam hand phaser shots are never again used is because it completely drains a phaser after that shot, unless you have a power pack handy. It makes sense, though it would be nice if it was mentioned on screen once. Just a single line of dialogue is all it would take. From any series.

    (I suppose we can infer this by using DS9's "THE SIEGE OF AR-558", with that soldier giving extra phaser power packs to various people right before the Jem'Hadar swarm them. They obviously set their phasers to kill, which likely drains phasers more than keeping them on stun, hence the extra packs. I use this scene as reasoning behind it, though it is more putting pieces together than outright established dialogue or visual.)
     
  11. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    You can make the argument that it wasn't used widely because it was draining, and of course because of damage to the ship. But there's situations that come up where they just should have used it. In Power Play it'd be useful both to the aliens for controlling hostages, and to the crew for trying to stun all three at once.

    Or, in DS9, to spot shrouded Gem Hadar. I guess in Way of the Warrior when they were training to hunt changelings they kinda used a wide beam.
     
  12. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Anyone else have a problem with Starfleet's uniform policy not allowing for religious wardrobe? Even Picard made an exception for the earrings.

    A lot of things in Learning Curve don't quite make sense for a Maquis crew. Really, the Maquis don't want to retreat against a superior force? This is a guerrilla group! They use hit and run tactics and ALWAYS retreat when outgunned.

    The Voyager writers always seemed to think the Maquis were some random group of space bandits.
     
    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
  13. Four Lights

    Four Lights Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Have just finished the first season and it really is such a tragedy. Janeway full of emotion, love, decency and compassion. Attempts made to give every character a few moments to shine. The wonderful Kes, who would later not just be dropped, but turned into some sort of enraged demon in season 5. Lots of allegorical tales from different planets with a point and purpose to them. All in all a real great opening chapter in what could have been a show with the potential to be as good as TNG.

    I only thought it was solid but not exceptional when I saw it way back it 94. Maybe being starved of the talents of Michael Piller and Jeri Taylor for over 20 years has made me appreciate even more just what Trek has lost in the intervening decades.
     
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  14. Bad Thoughts

    Bad Thoughts Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My son and I recently watched a spate of Voyager episodes. I don't want to open a can of worms by giving my opinion of the stories themselves. However, I was very struck by the energy and earnestness that almost all the actors put forward in all the early seasons.
     
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  15. Four Lights

    Four Lights Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    They didn't at that stage have a hack producer in charge with no sense of human drama or ability to convince the cast the show was capable of creating quality work.
     
  16. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I really enjoyed season 1 of "Voyager" and even liked it better than season 3 of "DS9" which was airing in that same year. "Caretaker" is Trek's best pilot episode. I feel I am the only one who loves "Parraylax." The show best represents what I think people expected from it with the looking for surplies and some conflict with the Maquis but not outright rebellion or anything silly like that. To me the show has 3 really strong seasons in season1,2 and 4 and one okay season in season 5. Season 3,6 and 7 is where most of the bad stuff is.

    Jason
     
  17. Four Lights

    Four Lights Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I remember seasons 5 to 7 as a clown show. Berman and Braga didn't then start to be called the "Killer Bs" for no reason.
     
  18. Jayson1

    Jayson1 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Which fair for the most part but I think Biller was in charge in season 7 so I don't think Braga can take blame for that season.

    Jason
     
  19. Refuge

    Refuge Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I really enjoyed Season 1 to Season 7 of Voyager. :techman:
     
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  20. Bad Thoughts

    Bad Thoughts Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Furthermore, Braga had original ideas on where to take the series. Berman effectively beat them out of him.