Star Trek: Voyager- Best Episodes

Discussion in 'Visual Arts' started by greelywinger, Jan 15, 2011.

  1. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    I've caught a few more episodes this summer. "Night" is one I watched this week. There are a pair of decent ideas here, but smashed together in a one hour episode neither idea is given the room it requires, so the whole thing ends up not working as well as it should.

    I can't help but think that if they'd abandoned the contained episode idea and gone with something more serialized, Voyager would have been a much more successful show. As it is, it feels like a continuation of TNG's somewhat bonkers, not often successful 7th season.
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  2. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    Interestingly, Jammer's review of "Night" from back in the '90s kicks off with just such an observation regarding the conventions of Trek and how Voyager was floundering by not striving to go against them:

    An episode like "Night" reveals a duality that exists within much of starship-based Trek. One half of this duality allows me to be interested in where these characters are going next, because sci-fi's possibilities are so broad. But with the other half, I realize that, in creative terms, they've probably already been where they're headed. It's a duality that makes me wonder how long a Trek series can last without striving to break the conventions of formula—which in turn makes me wonder how fatal a mistake it was for Voyager to ignore the more consequential implications of its setting way back when the long-lasting standards were being set.

    What's funny is that DS9 seems strangely immune to this Trek duality because its format these days is so labyrinthine, unpredictable, and particularly mindful of its own history. I'm not trying to go out of way to say "DS9 good, Voyager bad"—what I'm saying is that Voyager continues to come off as a new breed of TOS, whereas DS9 comes off as a breed of its own. (Sometimes I wonder where we'd be if DS9 had turned to exploring the Gamma Quadrant in TNG style rather than exploring its political and metaphysical powers within a war setting.)

    [VOY] Jammer's Review: "Night"
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  3. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    I agree with @Solaris about the Kes character being irritating these days. When the series ran as a new show and I watched week to week, I found Kes to be an intriguing character, certainly a moderating influence on the strange Neelix.

    I also regretted the decision to drop Kes from the show and replace her with Seven of Nine, who appeared to be just there as eye candy to lure in teenaged boys.

    It took me a long time to appreciate the Seven character and now I find that she's way more valuable to the show than Kes ever was. And the Kes-centric episodes are now almost unwatchable.
  4. Pete Sorbi

    Pete Sorbi Well-Known Member

    funny - I have the opposite opinion - it if were serialized - I probably would have stopped watching it (i.e. Enterprise) -and it wouldn't be as fun watching reruns at random - watching a serialized show takes a commitment - (I loved Breaking Bad...for example -but Ill probably never watch it again) - I think they are making a BIG mistake doing that with the new series ....
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  5. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    The first three seasons of Enterprise were pretty awful though, and that had nothing to do with it being "serialized" - it had to do with the show being run by a couple of hacks.

    The final season of Enterprise was really good though under the new producers, if still a bit uneven. I think Paramount were stupid to cancel it when they did, but then Paramount has been run by idiots for years, which is why they're in the mess they're in today...
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  6. Rfreeman

    Rfreeman Forum Resident

    Lawrenceville, NJ
    Personally thought DS9 was the high water mark of Trek as the one that transcended Alien of the week to do ongoing interesting plots.

    I would rank episodes of Voyager (my least fav) roughly proportional to the number of lines The Doctor got in an episode.

    Probably could do that with Data in TNG.
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  7. Solaris

    Solaris a bullet in flight

    New Orleans, LA
    Voyager did have plenty of interconnected episodes with aliens and situations reappearing, so it's not as if each episode was completely self-contained. They stopped short of season-long story arcs, but that can be restricting too, locking you into one narrative without much wiggle room. I liked Battlestar Galactica, but there were times when it got a bit soap opera-ish because of that long form story structure. Voyager's great weakness, especially toward the end, was its tendency not to push the concept of the show farther, and to play it safe in the Trek mode.
    Matthew Tate likes this.
  8. benjaminhuf

    benjaminhuf Forum Resident


    We're basically saying that from our perspective c. 40% of Voyager episodes are weak. Some are painfully bad. This is our guide for how to miss those and watch the better ones.

    This is not a ranked list. It's just our list of the good, to very good, to excellent episodes in broadcast order.
    Erik Tracy likes this.
  9. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident

    I like Voyager quite a bit, including most of the Neelix episodes, especially when he's getting under Tuvok's skin - they were a good pairing (Tuvix was a classic), as was Kim and Paris, Doc and Seven (and Janeway). On my most recent re-watch, I found that fewer episodes were 'unwatchable' compared with TNG (where the unwatchable episodes clustered in S1,2 & 7).

    I have never re-watched Enterprise, and never will!
  10. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    I thought that too at one time. ENTERPRISE aired in the early 2000's, back when videotape was still the only way I had to capture episodes over-the-air. So I had this large VHS collection of ENTERPRISE episodes that I feared I'd never watch because I perceived it as a lesser entry in the STAR TREK canon, and I didn't want to watch VHS tapes on today's big-screen TVs.

    In a purge of junk from our house, my wife wanted me to pitch the ENTERPRISE tapes, but I still thought they had value. She made me a deal I couldn't refuse and bought me the Blu-ray set of ENTERPRISE and I pitched the VHS tapes. That was a sweet deal.

    Well, once the Blu-ray set arrived, of course we wanted to watch them, - and they weren't as bad as I had remembered them. Some altered-canon stuff still bothers me and some episodes just weren't that good, but overall, I found a lot to like. If nothing else, it was the first widescreen STAR TREK series and the Blu-rays look great on the HDTV.
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  11. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident

    That was the primary gripe that I had with it. I just couldn't compartmentalize the cognitive dissonance (and the same type of issues are arising for the new Disco series). But the cherry on top was the Dallas ending - it was all a dream simulation! A horrible ending to a very weak series.
  12. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    That ending was just s***. But then Berman and Braga came back to impose it on the series, as a "tribute" to the wonderful work they'd done (running Trek into the ground) so what do you expect?
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  13. Solaris

    Solaris a bullet in flight

    New Orleans, LA
    I abandoned Enterprise only a few episodes in and was never aware of the ending, but I just looked it up and...WOW. I thought the ending of Voyager was lame.
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  14. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    This statement has me confused. Do you or others think that the entire *series* was a holodeck simulation? In DALLAS, an entire season was wiped out because it was a dream.

    My thought about the final episode of ENTERPRISE was that it was a way to further establish that it was really happening and that future space-jockeys would find the events of that episode inspiring. But if people are believing that the whole series happened in a holodeck, then I'm fearful that there's been a horrible misunderstanding.
  15. I revisited Enterprise more recently after originally abandoning it at the end of Series 1.

    Back then I just didn't see the value of a prequel with inferior technology and a pre-ordained outcome.

    On revisiting it by way of a complete DVD set, however, I stuck with it and found that Season 3 was excellent and that Season 4 was also generally excellent apart from the final episode, which was a let-down, and the explanation as to why Klingons looked human during Kirk's time, which was a bit desperate, really.

    More generally, however, I still struggle with the prequel concept. For me, prequels are sometimes more about milking a cash cow than being truly creative. I'd rather see an entirely new idea on screen or a forward-looking extension of an idea such as ST TNG, since both of these approaches are effectively open-ended and enable the authors to do what they like without causing too much upset. Even the Star Trek reboot allows for this by dropping the lead characters into an alternate time line. (Clever, really. Only science fiction can do this properly, however. Hmmm! Was Dallas aspiring to become science fiction?)

    So why can't someone create something new in the Star Trek universe?
  16. Deesky

    Deesky Forum Resident

    I never bothered watching the series again after it aired, but that's how I took it at the time, as a way of reconciling all the rewriting of history/canon that the series trampled over its run.
  17. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    Wow. No wonder it gets so much hate.

    I saw it as a standalone episode - with a TNG framing story - that wrapped up the series properly with the founding of the Federation.
  18. Erik Tracy

    Erik Tracy Meet me at the Green Dragon for an ale

    San Diego, CA, USA
  19. OK. If you assist.

    I'm working my way through a complete Voyager DVD set right now, having dropped out somewhere around season 5 when the series was first shown.

    Into Series 3 right now and just watched "The Swarm".

    Some good episodes and some not so good.

    Too many humanoids with lumpy noses and foreheads who measure their age in Earth years in the Delta Quadrant.

    Also, couldn't quite work out how after 2 years of Voyager travelling with maximum haste towards the Alpha Quadrant the Kazon and Seska were always there, and sometimes anticipating the arrival of Voyager and setting traps in advance. Either Voyager was very slow or it went in circles or there's something very dodgy about space and curvature in the Delta Quadrant. I was glad when that all finished.

    Combining my recent viewings with distant memories of watching some episodes the first time around, my favourite episode(s) amongst those that I did see was "Year Of Hell".

    Kes doesn't annoy me apart from the fact that she had these powers that were rarely exploited before she left the series. As a character I think that she was hugely underused in this respect.

    Finally for now, isn't Robert Picardo a great actor?
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  20. HGN2001

    HGN2001 Mystery Picture Member

    While I agree with too many "head-bump, wrinkled-nose" aliens, I understand the necessity. Hiring anything other than humans to act in the show is problematic, so having them all be humanoid-like is understandable. Let's just say that they were better than Jar-Jar Binks...

    As for the use of years, kilometers, and other Earth measurements, that can easily be explained with the handy-dandy Universal Translator. Think about it - with the right app on that smartphone in your pocket, you can virtually have a primitive version of the Universal Translator!
  21. RK2249

    RK2249 Forum Resident

    South Jersey
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  22. sunspot42

    sunspot42 Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    That was a decent Voyager episode. I think if they'd all been that solid the series would have been more fondly remembered.
  23. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Forum Resident

    Not a huge fan of that one.

    I prefer something more intense like the episode where everybody on Voyager dies except for Kim and Chekoteh (sp?) along with the Doctor and they try to fix a mistake by sending calculations back in time.
  24. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    Giant fan of BLINK OF AN EYE. Life is quick, fleeting. Make the most of it.
  25. greelywinger

    greelywinger That T-Rex Guy Thread Starter

    Dayton, Ohio USA
    I've checked some of the 'best' lists on the net & they are mostly filled with a lot of 2 parter episodes. I don't consider those because they count as 2 episodes (not one) in my book.
    I put together my list of 5 of my favorite Voyager episodes.

    Death Wish (S2:E18)
    Tuvix (S2:E24)
    Sacred Ground (S3:E7)
    Real Life (S3:E22)
    Latent Image (S5:E11)



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