Gimme That Star Trek Ep.36: Fixing Voyager

What did Star Trek: Voyager do wrong that armchair critics like Siskoid and Married with Comics' Jonathan Schaefer-Hames don't like it as much as the rest of Trek? And can these two podcasters "fix" the show by talking through their ass for 90 minutes? By the Great Bird of the Galaxy, they can at least try!

Listen to Episode 36 below!

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"Star Trek Theme" by Alexander Courage, with the Irredeemable Shagg on vocals. End theme: "Deep Space Nine Theme" by Dennis McCarthy.

Bonus clips from: Star Trek Voyager's "Scientific Method", starring Kate Mulgrew and Robert Picardo; "Message in a Bottle", starring Robert Picardo; "Phage", starring Cully Fredricksen; "State of Flux", "The Cloud" and "Unity", starring Kate Mulgrew; and random technobabble by Tim Russ, Roxann Dawson, Robert Beltran, Kate Mulgrew, Robert Picardo, Garrett Wang, and Robert Duncan McNeill (with thanks to Jogwheel on YouTube).

And thanks for leaving a comment!

15 responses to “Gimme That Star Trek Ep.36: Fixing Voyager

  1. You pitched that Symbiogenesis episode back in episode one…

    Speaking of, my initial thought for a fix was there, have Tuvok immediately put her under arrest and court martialed after that and have her spend the rest of the series in the brig.

    Now, the problem really starts before then. But there’s a seed in there. What if the main arc if the show was Janeway’s descent into madness, spending at least a season Hannibal Lectering from the brig, with a real balance of power between the divided crew in that power vacuum? Mulgrew could have acted to he heck out of that.

    The fix for the Maquis relevance is easy: but some Cardassians in the delta quadrant. The Badlands was in their backyard, lots of ships could have fallen in over the centuries. Some built empires, some are trying to get home too. Maybe one has a federation-threatening caretaker weapon, make a race arc out of that.

    Chakoteh has to go. The Maquis leader role should probably be another woman. Neelix and Kes are useless. I like the idea of a Cardassians crew member, but one that’s from an old accidental colony, one born and raised in the delta quadrant. For the other local guide I’m not sure, but someone inclined to hate the first one makes sense, reflect the ship’s division.

    Let’s make Kim interesting: kill him off. Repeatedly. Give him some technobabble immortality curse early on, like Jack Harkness in Who, make every time hurt and traumatic, and dead with that over time. I’m less confident in that actor’s chops to pull that off, but we can try.

    Ending? I sort of like the idea of having a lot of time pass over the show and especially in the finale. Let them reach a Federation long past All Good Things era,changed perhaps for the worse, maybe spend a few episodes in that world and end with a long day ifght with the Borg/Cardassians threat, with a redemption and sacrifice from Janeway.

    1. They could have done the Crisis on Infinite Kims, where all of the Harrys from all of the different alternate futures have to team up to help Prime Harry study for the Lieutenant exam before they all die.

  2. Great discussion gentlemen. Lots to chew on. I didn’t disagree with any of it. I know Voyager better than DS9 only because for the first few seasons it was prominently aired on one of the few channels we got in our college town. It wasn’t good Star Trek, but it was Star Trek, so I watched it.

    All of your ideas sound more interesting than what we got. You nailed it: this show played it way too safe. Here was their chance to do “edgy” with Trek, and they blew it…for 7 years. Wow.


  3. Enjoyed this episode very much, even though I bailed on VOYAGER after SSN 1 and never went back. Kudos to Siskoid for that “There’s a [BLANK]” montage, the editing of which must have been labor intensive.

      1. They kind of got to do with her what they were doing with Data but then ruined with the emotion chip, of showing him gradually figuring out the quirks of human behavior and becoming more human in the process. But with her, she started off more disdainful of the characteristics she was learning. I wish they’d bounced her off of a different character than Janeway all of the time.

  4. Thank goodness Voyager did not turn out like Battlestar Galactica. That show got so dark and the characters became so unlikable that I stopped watching partway through season three, and I don’t care if they ever found Earth or not. I still have not watched the end of that show. If Voyager had gone that route, it simply wouldn’t be Star Trek.

    I”m one of those who did not like Voyager when it aired, but has since come to really enjoy it on DVD in recent years. Yes, it has flaws, but where I didn’t like characters before, I like them now. Where I didn’t like the plots or the aliens before, I like them much more now. It works for me as an action/adventure show in a way that it simply didn’t when it first aired. Maybe I’m less demanding. Yes, I’d have appreciated more forward character development and more seasons with the Starfleet/Maquis conflict aboard ship, but in a lot of ways, I prefer this show and its characters to TNG, something I never thought I’d hear myself say.

    Interesting commentary, but I’d enjoy hearing the other side of the coin now, and hearing a discussion from some fans who enjoy Voyager.


  5. I haven’t watched all of Voyager, and don’t really remember why. I saw most of season 1, but sort of stopped trying to catch it after that. But when I did, it really became a joke about “how will they reset this time.” I didn’t watch enough to start disliking Janeway, and I liked your ideas to keep her from turning into a Mary Sue captain.

    Great show, guys!

  6. Captain Janeway is a villain. Admit it, go with it, court-martial her in the final episode.

    It’s a bit risky to do that with your first female Captain. But if you screw up a villain, you can always kill them off, no worries. Meanwhile, you can build up your other characters, and maybe find your female protagonist there. Like B’Elanna, and… Oh, she really is the only other option, isn’t she?

    She could’ve been more of an inverse Worf. A human raised by Klingons. She still doesn’t fit in at the Academy, and runs off to join the Maquis. Because of how she sees the world, rather than because of immutable Klingon traits.

    With Janeway in command of an advanced starship in a relatively primitive part of the galaxy, she could be a conqueror. First order of the day is to kick some Kazon ass, which might not seem like the wrong thing to do. They manage to save the Caretaker, for now. They capture ships and build up a fleet to tag along with Voyager. The Ocampans are grateful, the other Kazon don’t know whether to join with Janeway or to rally against her. The Maquis reluctantly comply, and there’s been no reason for either Tuvok or Seska to reveal themselves yet. They still have their ship.

    I agree they should not keep jumping across the galaxy, leaving everything new behind. Or if they do travel thousands of light years, and someone they recognize catches up with them, they should investigate their warp technology, and their knowledge of wormholes.

    If the characters are likely to die of old age before they can return home, they might as well take in their surroundings, and do more in one place. If the possibility of making leaps comes up, go for it. Otherwise, don’t talk about it.

    And don’t ally with the Borg against Species 8472, based on an entirely hypothetical scenario.

    Instead of diminishing returns with the Borg, the characters could stand aside and let them be exterminated. TNG was done with them, at this point. In the wake, there could be a few remnants here and there, including Seven of Nine. And various ravaged civilizations, who are given a chance to survive and rebuild. Or to be faced with a new threat.

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