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Resistance is futile.

Renaissance Man

Cast and Crew

Directed by: Mike Vejar
Story By: Andrew Shepard Price & Mark Gaberman
Teleplay By: Phyllis Strong & Mike Sussman

Starring:
Kate Mulgrew as Kathryn Janeway
Robert Beltran as Chakotay
Roxann Dawson as B’Elanna Torres
Robert Duncan McNeill as Tom Paris
Robert Picardo as The Doctor
Tim Russ as Tuvok
Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine
Garrett Wang as Harry Kim

Guest Cast:
Andy Milder as Nar
Wayne Thomas Yorke as Zet
Alexander Enberg as Vorik
David Sparrow as Alien/Doctor
Tarik Ergin as Tactical
J.R. Quinonez as Overlooker/Doctor

Original Airdate

May 16, 2001

What Happened

Our episode starts with the Captain and the Doctor returning, in the Delta Flyer, from a medical conference. The doctor comments how much he’s enjoyed the time away, getting to know the captain. They encounter some spacial turbulance. When we next see the Captain she’s communicating to Voyager via their main deflector. They’ve taken damage and she needs to speak with Chakotay in her ready room urgently.

The captain informs Chakotay that the ship has entered an alien empire’s space and that they believe that Voyager’s warp drive is polluting their space. As recompense, they must hand over their warp core, thus rendering the ship incapable of returning home. They are ordered to set down on a local class M. Chakotay feels skeptical, the Captain’s always been so dead-set on getting home, that to lay down so easily now is completely out of her character. Janeway then speaks with B’Lenna about modifications to the Flyer so it can tow a warp core. Chakotay finds out about these modifications and confronts the captain. She blows him off and leaves the bridge, ordering that she not be disturbed. She also appears to be hearing voices…and answering them.

Chakotay speaks with the doctor and gets his limited view on the attack on the Delta Flyer. Chakotay asks the Doctor to give the Captain a full check, just to make sure nothing’s wrong. Chakotay and Seven meet in Astrometrics to scan for cloaked ships (the deadly armada that will destroy Voyager if they don’t turn over the core). While there, they receive an angry message from the alien fleet ordering Voyager to hurry up and get their core ejected. Chakotay checks back with the Doctor, Janeway appears to be fine. Chakotay’s fears are not allayed. He visits the Captain and asks why she’s behaving this way. He then trips up the Captain with a made up story of when she was a lieutenant. She attacks him with a hypospray, knocking him unconscious. It is then revealed that it’s actually the doctor in disguise. He hides the first officer in the ship’s morgue.

The Captain is actually a hostage and the Doctor must get them the core, or she will be killed. Since they can see and hear what he does, he is completely unable to warn the crew. What follows is the Doctor shapeshifting around the crew to get the core ejected. He manages to succeed and tows the core with the flyer to Janeway’s captors. The alien race (unnamed) are the one’s introduced in “Tinker, Tenor, Doctor, Spy” last year and featured again in this year’s “The Void.” The Doctor is captured trying to get the captain rescued. Back on Voyager, power has been restored, but an out-of-tune piano concerto is playing on all comm channels. Analysis of the wave frequency distorting the music shows a warp signiture. Chakotay dispatches Tuvok and Paris to rescue their imprisoned comrades using a shuttle. In the hope he can do some more spying for the aliens, the Doctor gets several new templates added to his program, causing him to destabilize. Tuvok and Paris attack, freeing the Flyer, which Paris promptly takes command of. The alien commander orders the Voyager warp core ejected and destroyed. His subordinate revolts, knocking his commander out and saving the core.

Back on Voyager, the Doctor’s program continues to degrade. Afraid that he is doomed he makes several, highly embarassing, “death bed confessions” to his crewmates, including professing his love for Seven of Nine. Fortunately B’Lenna saves his program by deleting his excess subroutines. Embarrassed, the Doctor hides out in Sickbay for a week, before the Captain lures him out to join her for coffee on the holodeck.

Review

Well gang, this is it. The last regular episode before the two-hour finale. Excited? Me neither, but I’ll try and reserve judgement until the end. At any rate we are graced with a so-so outing as the penultimate episode. Not as bad as “Natural Law” but certainly not better than last week’s “Homestead.” I need to stop watching West Wing and then Voyager. The writing and acting is so far removed, my standards are just too high. While focusing on the Doctor and Janeway, each character gets a little screen time, which is always nice to see. Also, I didn’t focus much on it in the synopsis, but the various scenes where the Doctor impersonates various crew members and then has to escape Voyager were pretty well done. Most are excellent examples of the Doctor’s ability to “out-grow” his programming.

It was also nice to keep some continuity with these particular aliens returning. The writers have already established their ability to use the Doctor’s senses for spying (“Tinker, Tenor, Doctor, Spy”) and use sensors to see inside other ships (“The Void”).

Anyone else notice that the entire bridge crew was on hand in the holodeck for the Doctor’s confessions? Actually, one person was missing and it took me a moment to figure out who it was. Chakotay! He’s become so inconsequential to the whole series, he’s hardly missed in large group scenes. Also, if you have a chance, this week’s TV Guide has a full article on the final days of Voyager. Several paragraphs mention Robert Beltran’s whining and moaning about having no lines. See what happens when you piss off the writers?

High Point

The Doctor’s “Death Bed” confessions are pretty funny. Yes, a lot funnier than the Tuvok Two-Step. Vulcans acting out-of-character just doesn’t equal humor to me. The Doctor’s always a little melodramatic and this is just his character at its peak.

Low Point

There didn’t seem to be any stand out low points last night. If I had to single something out, it would have to be stall in action after the Doctor steals the core, and before they are rescued. This just deadened the pace a little too much.

The Scores

Originality: Putting the Doctor on the wrong side of his normal orders was an interesting change, but I think we’ve all seen one too many hostage crises from Voyager. 4 out of 6

Effects: Hot stuff. New effects for core ejection, the Doctor (as a very pregnant B’lenna) doing a bit of Matrix-style flipping over Tuvok, and some nice battle scenes. 5 out of 6

Story: Some pacing problems towards the end and the beginning was a bit predictable. 3 out 6

Acting: Clean performances from Picardo, Mulgrew, Dawson, and McNeil. 4 out of 6

Emotional Response: The one thing this series has never been able to pull off nicely is suspense. You never worry about the characters. The humor at the end was a nice treat though. 3 out of 6

Production: Well directed, with nice effects. Also, I don’t think I mention enough just how cool Michael Westmore’s makeup effects are. 4 out of 6

Overall: A nice mid-season episode placed at the end of the series. 4 out 6

Total: 27 out of 42 (64%)

Stills & Videos

Next week, Voyager’s Series Finale! “Endgame” This is it gang!!!