The ‘Maquis’ problem comes to a head in the episode that originally aired on October 25, 2000 this is Repression.
Captain’s Log Stardate 54090.4: Repression
Someone is attacking the former Maquis members of Voyager and Tuvok is determined to find out who it is.
After watching a ‘3D’ movie together, Paris and B’Elanna discover the unconscious body of a crewmember hidden in their simulation. Unable to find the cause of Crewman Tabor’s assault, the Doctor and Janeway lean on Tovok to begin an investigation.
Before long additional crewmen are being found unconscious and they all have one thing in common, they were all former Maquis members. It seems someone aboard is attacking the Maquis Crewmen but there is little to go on as to whom. Chakotay advises that all former Maquis carry phasers and it is soon suspect that maybe this is Starfleet’s doing…
Ultimately it turns out that a crazy Bajoran Vedek by the name of Teero Anaydis, had hidden a mind controlling message in a communication from Tuvok’s Son. This activates a repressed program that caused Tuvok to attack the Bajoran crew. Tuvok has been mind melding with the former Maquis implanting a suggestion into their heads causing them to eventually take over Voyager. However through some use of trickery Tuvok ultimately resists and is able to reconvert everyone back to normal returning the ship to Janeway.
Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:
So what did we learn here class? Starfleet has some pretty crappy security when it comes to high profile transmissions. I mean, seriously, with a ship like Voyager lost in the Delta Quadrant and Starfleet being able to only transmit to them on occasion, you would think that not just anyone would be able to manipulate, let alone send, a message to this ship. Star Fleet is literally using a singular system to transmit these bursts all at once so, either someone in Starfleet Security fell asleep on their job or they have the worst security in the galaxy. If a rouge Vedek can highjack a transmission like this, what is stopping the Romulans or any number of enemies from sending Voyager an even more insidious program that does more than just brainwash a certain Vulcan. Yes, sure, Tuvok and the rest of the former Maquis had some strange brainwashing before hand but still…you’d think someone at Star Fleet would have caught a tampered signal being sent through a singular transmission point to what should be a highly classified ship.
That massive plot hole aside, it is always a pleasure to see Tuvok conduct one of his investigations. The dude is thorough, even if it does end up being himself he is investigating. Tim Russ is a tremendous actor so any episode that gives him a chance to shine is worth watching, despite massive plot holes and odd story choices, he can carry even the worst scripts through. The guy is good, no doubt.
Now, there is another strange issue with this story that really bugs me. The issue, Chakotay himself. This guy has been working with Janeway for nearly seven years, and all it takes is a single incident for him to suddenly revert back to his momma bear protector personality and act like all of the Star Fleet members are suspect. This guy’s loyalty is so damned flighty and frankly, this sense of protection he has for these members should have waned significantly over the years as he and Janeway developed a trust. The fact that he still acts this way shows that a) he hasn’t grown at all as a character which is a shame and b) if this is the case he probably should never have been placed as second in command.
Overall, while this is a really solid story on it’s own and Tim Russ does a wonderful job in his role, this episode just doesn’t work. I would understand if this episode happened earlier in the series. Maybe one of the Maquis had a holodeck program that they brought with them or maybe this could have been tied in with Lon Suder, but no… we get what feels like a leftover script that is being used to flesh out the final season of the series. Sadly, this seems par for the course as even STNG had some pretty rough final season episodes… remember that strange one called Masks….
Gleanings and Cool Bits:
- 0 photon torpedoes fired, -20 remaining.
- 0 shuttlecraft lost or destroyed, -6 remaining
- We get to see Tuvok’s son…so there is that.
- …and what is it with Crazy Vedeks? I swear, between Vedek/Kai Winn, Vedek Anaydis and the rest, there seems to be a significant problem on Bajor with some insane religious leaders. The Prophets Must Be Crazy…nah just the Vedeks.
Thanks for reading the Retro TV Review, I look forward to discussing the rest of the series with you, one episode at a time every Monday, Wednesday and Friday! Next Review: Critical Care
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Late To The Game 3/10/2021
Special Thanks to Memory Alpha as they are one of the best sources for details on Star Trek information available. Although I have a pretty deep knowledge on the subject, they have proven invaluable as a regular resource.
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