Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by TheMightyQ, Jun 16, 2013.
Kate Mulgrew is a very good actress, but she's not a star.
She is? First I'm hearing about it.
No idea what you're on to... Janeway is pretty easily my favorite Captain. Kirk is the only one who rivals her. Mulgrew was great in the role and probably one of the better actors to grace the ST screen (though I agree with the person who said Ryan is an even better actress).
She has breasts not man boobs
I know I am not the only one who probably had their jaw wide open during Infinite Regress. Jeri blew me away. She didn't have to prove anything to me but damn, that was the cherry on top.
Kate is my Janeway but her acting is subpar. Her mannerisms cross over into most if not all her roles. To give her credit I am most impressed with Red. And grateful she got Janeway.
I think that too often, a lot of ST fans reproched to Janeway her gender. If she has been a man, watchers would have been sadly more benevolent and even more lenient towards her decisions/actions.
-> from Kirk to Archer, all male Captains made mistakes and misjudgements more or less serious but for whatever reasons, those made by Janeway always seem to be of exponential gravity.
That being said, I don't try to sweep some inconsistencies around Janeway's character under the carpet but Kate Mulgrew wasn't in fault on this point and it seems to me that she tried her best to make us forget them with more or less success.
At the end, Mulgrew and her character remain popular among Voyager's fans, what is a good thing. Like what, only those who want Janeway's unpopularity really believe in it!
This is absolutely 100% true... Of course, it does not apply to all viewers, but some, yes. And probably not a small number either. Unfortunately, men are conditioned to treat/act towards women in certain ways that are unequal and women are conditioned to accept it. In another generation we may move past this (it's already beginning), but up to and including the mid-90s: spot on.
To me, Janeway felt a lot like a female character written by male writers. Here's a quote from Rick Berman:
"We didn't want to just create a captain and cast it with a female. We wanted to create a female captain who was a captain that was somewhat more nurturing and a little bit less swashbuckling than someone like Captain Kirk, a little bit less sullen than someone like Captain Sisko, and a little bit more approachable than Captain Picard."
So, she's nurturing, less swashbuckling, cheerful, and approachable? Way to break down gender roles, guys.
You get a good character by starting with the character, not the gender. Look at Kira from DS9 - one of the franchise's most popular characters and it really doesn't matter if she's a man or a woman. She's in a command position, so why don't people reproach her for her gender?
The problem with Janeway's mistakes is that they're very rarely portrayed as mistakes. She just doesn't seem to have any flaws, and flaws are part of what make a character interesting and realistic. I get the impression they thought 'female captain' was character enough, and that giving her flaws would make her seem too weak.
Okay, sure. But look at Starbuck from Battlestar. The fanbase was up in arms when they first heard a woman was playing that very masculine character, then she became probably the show's most popular character because she was so well written.
Cool, man... haven't seen that show. Although it's relic from the time frame I grew up in. One day...
And wow, did Starbuck have her loveable flaws.
But it’s the character, not the gender. Starbuck played tomboy, who was very hetero, and not a bit Trek. Broke all the rules of traditional women’s roles.
Talking about Starbuck as opposed to Janeway here.
Sorry about the confusion on that.
Hit the wrong button trying to edit quotes. It’s an embarrassing ofm moment.
She's arguably the female equivalent of Kirk: Cared for and rescued her crew, even in breaking the Prime Directive to do so. Having a friendship with a person struggling with emotions or lacking them (7, Tuvok). More action-oriented. She showed that she could be a real person and not a walking stereotype.
Yes, she broke the Prime directive. So did Picard. Yes, she contradicted herself. So did Picard. That's due to the lapse in writing quality. But, no, she is not a tomboy: She is an individual. People are free to be what they want in Trekland.
^This. One problem I have with the Janeway character is that she's almost always vindicated, proven right in the end - even when she's clearly not. As if the writers were afraid to let her lose (face) every once in a while. (Seen in that light, Night is an exception, they actually showed J. with a kind of a depression.) You expressed it better than I could have done.
And even then, I'm still conflicted about myself, whether this feeling is justified or just exhibits a hidden misogynistic attitude I might have. Because I don't seem to have similar issues with Picard, who was "shown wrong" just as seldomly.
I don't "hate" Janeway by the way, in fact I think she's one of the strongest characters on the show.
There’s often something a little smug about Janeway’s mistakes. It’s like someone takes all your savings to the roulette table, puts everything on 15, then acts like you were crazy for not believing in them when 15 miraculously comes up.
Other captains also win through when the odds are long, but there doesn’t seem to be quite that sense of ‘see, they were right all along!’ you get with Janeway. The best example would be Kirk in TWOK. He wins against the odds, but this time Spock dies.
About Jeri Ryan being a better actress, I don't know but one thing is sure, she knew easily giving a clear pretense of a special relationship between Janeway and Seven, no matter what it was.
Shame that her other roles did not give her the occasion to show the extent of her talent, often playing the stooge for the lead actor/actress, except maybe her role in Boston Public which showed how at ease she was .
Well, she's the better actress imho, within the confines of the ST series. Mulgrew is great though: highly entertaining as Janeway, but I just felt Ryan sold her character a bit better. They both were fantastic in their scenes together as we've discussed. There was definitely a strong bond between the two onscreen , as opposed to in reality, which makes their performances even stronger.
Edit: don't actually think I've seen anything else that Ryan has been in. Might need to remedy that soon...
Jeri Ryan also got better scripts, imo. The writers frequently wrote Janeway into situations that would make some members of the audience lose sympathy for her.
I think Jeri Ryan did a lot more with Seven than most actors would, but she didn't have to hold the show together like Mulgrew did. Janeway had to do a lot more than Seven, and she had to behave in ways that often conflicted from week to week.
Kate Mulgrew commenting, "Their mistake" through Janeway's lips is all the authority I need to take her seriously.
There was another line that escapes me! She nailed it and now I am drawing a blank.
It's what I loved about Benjamin Sisko in his first 3 seasons of DS9, he was flawed from the start and he had a terrible temper which could hamper plot elements but seeing him work through his own personal obstacle from an episode made him an intriguing character to watch. Janeway was in her first command and stuck in this unfortunate situation and for her it was like, "No problem, it's only Tuesday." She was so dull-witted about her situation that I couldn't buy her as a character and I agree it doesn't help her when the writers are staging every element for her to be right all of the time. I mean, a leader should have some self reflection from their actions, especially when they're bad ones. Kirk had that moment in "Balance of Terror", Picard had that in "Darmak" why can't I see a heroine, who I want to invest in, have her own personal obstacle to overcome? Shame it wasn't Janeway and it definitely ain't Michael Burhnam.
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