Wow,  I can’t believe we are already here.  I started this blog in 2017 as a forum for me just to have a place to discuss the things I loved with whoever wanted to listen and it quickly transformed into a pop culture review blog covering everything from music to moves and, of course, Star Trek.

Here we are now, at the end of the third Star Trek review series about to ender yet another not long from now.  To think that this episode that we discuss today aired nearly 20 years ago is insane to even fathom, all of our lives have changed so much in the past 20 years and I am forced to wonder how much of our lives were affected by Star Trek Voyager itself.  It is indeed bittersweet to say farewell to this intrepid little crew who braved the unknown, but it is also fitting that the final episode, which originally aired on May 23, 2001, deals with looking into the past and wondering what could have been different if you had the power to change things.   This is Endgame.

The Episode:

Captain’s Log Stardate 54973.4 Endgame

Admiral Janeway travels back in time to change the past and getting Voyager home sooner and saving those that she loved in the process.

The Story:

This is going to be lengthy so I will try to cut it as short as possible.  So…here we go.

Vice Admiral Janeway and the remaining members of her former crew celebrate the tenth anniversary of Voyager’s return home. Although some of her former crew are missing, there is no doubt that everyone is remembered.   Soon, after Janeway gives a guest lecture on the Borg for Commander Barclay, Janeway is contacted by B’Elanna and Tom’s daughter Miral Paris who has been on a secret mission to obtain an item for the Admiral.   Janeway acknowledges her discovery and agrees to meet with the Klingon Korath, but before leaving visits an ailing Tuvok who has contacted someting similar to Bendii Syndrome, informing him that she is leaving and might not be back again.   Janeway then obtains an  experimental tachyon resistant drug from the Doctor, who now goes by Joe, and makes one last stop to say goodbye to another old friend.  At his grave, Janeway tells the now deceased Chakotay that she will make things right for all of them.

In the past, Paris and Torres deal with false labor while the crew adjusts to a new chef in Neelix’s absence.  Chakotay and Seven have begun dating and Tuvok is beaten at Kal-Toh by Icheb.   Soon the ship detects a graviton flux in a nearby nebula indicating that a wormhole may be nearby.  Seven presents her findings to the crew informing them that she not only found one wormhole but hundreds giving the ship the possibility of going home. 

Voyager heads into the Nebula only to discover that is is occupied by the Borg.  The Borg do not attack after it is informed by the Borg Queen that she wants Voyager left alone and that she will be watching them. Voyager’s crew is shocked that the Borg did not pursue the ship, not knowing what actually transpired.  Believing that their sensors may have been affected by the Nebula, they determine that they may be able to get to one of the wormholes.  It is soon discovered that there are nearly 50 Borg Cubes making the risk far greater than it is worth. Janeway orders the ship to continue on their original course.

As the ship resumes course, Seven asks to have her cortical stimulator safeguards removed so that she can pursue a relationship with Chakotay. Their date is cut short when the ship detects a temporal rift that has opened in front of them.

Back in the future, Joe (the Doctor) discovers Janeway’s plans after talking with Tuvok while Janeway is meeting with Ensign Paris and the Klingons.  However, Janeway is betrayed by Korath who refuses to honor their bargain demanding instead that Janeway provide him with her ships shield generator.  Upset, she finally agrees but demands to inspect the device before she agrees.  Just as the device is handed to her she has it and herself beamed away where she deploys her ships ablative armour and speeds away.  Her trip is cut short, however when she is intercepted by the USS Rhode Island captained by Harry Kim who informs her that she is now under arrest.  She agrees to go with him but only if he listens to her plan.  After their discussion, Captain Kim reluctantly agrees knowing that what she is doing could change both of their lives. Janeway activates the Chrono Deflector but, before she can head out, she is attacked by Klingons causing her to ask Captain Kim for further assistance.

Kim returns and fends off the Klingons as Admiral Janeway heads through the temporal rift she opened.

Back in the past Admiral Janeway arrives and asks that Voyager close the rift before the Klingons get through.  Doing so, the Janeways meet and begin discussing Admiral Janeway’s presence there.   Admiral Janeway (AJ) informs Captain Janeway (CJ) of some of the events that happen between now and her own future but Captain Janeway does not want to hear too much. AJ informs CJ that she has come back in time to get Voyager home, telling her that the borg in the nebula are the answer to this problem.  CJ recalls the threat of the Borg to AJ but AJ informs CJ that her futuristic shuttle has technology that will protect Voyager from the Borg.

The Doctor confirms that the future Janeway is indeed who she claims but notes that there is a device in her brain that seems to be Starfleet Technology.  Admiral Janeway informs the Doctor that it is a piece of tech he designed in the future.  Seven arrives much to AJ’s joy and sorrow, informing CJ that they can adapt most of the shuttles defenses to Voyager giving the ship an advantage. 

After working on the upgrades, Seven awakes to find herself being contacted by The Borg Queen who informs her that if Voyager enters the Nebula that she will destroy and assimilate the entire ship and crew.  Seven pleads with the Borg Queen but the Queen refuses to budge.

Eventually Voyager goes ahead with the plan knowing now that the Borg Queen is protecting something possibly dangerous.  The ship manages to survive the attacks from the Borg only to find that a Borg Transwarp hub was hidden deep in the nebula.  This could help Voyager return home but, if destroyed could harm the Borg even more so than ever before.  Captain Janeway determines that destroying the hub is their best course of action much to the dismay of Admiral Janeway.  AJ attempts to argue with CJ but the Captain winds indicating that now that she knows Voyager gets home, she can do the right thing here preventing the Borg from having this technology.  AJ then tells CJ that if she takes this course of action Seven will die and that her husband Chakotay will die not long after they get back home.  Additionally twenty plus additional crew will die in the time it takes them to get home and Tuvok will become a broken man due to a mental issue he has that could have been healed.  CJ questions Tuvok about this disease and he comes clean explaining that the only cure is a mind meld with a family member.  Even though going through the node will get them home and possibly save him, he must think about the crew and not himself. 

Eventually Admiral Janeway agrees to help destroy the hub while Voyager uses it to get back him. As the Janeways begin their missions,  Seven and Chakotay come to terms with their relationship and Torres goes into Labor.

Admiral Janeway leaves the ship and is captured by the Borg Queen hoping to assimilate her and the future ship. Admiral Janeway strikes a deal with the Borg Queen informing the Queen that she knows Voyager will not survive the attack.  The Borg Queen is shocked that Janeway would betray her own and begins to assimilate AJ only to discover that this was the Admiral’s plan all along.  Admiral Janeway’s blood has infected the Borg with a Neurolytic Pathogen causing the Borg Queen to begin breaking down.  While Admiral Janeway sacrifices herself to destroy not only the Borg but the Transwarp hub as well, Voyager slips through and begins it’s journey to the Alpha Quadrant.

Voyager emerges in the Alpha Quadrant greeted by a small armada who are expecting a potential Borg Invasion.  Just as Voyager passes through a Borg Sphere appears and is obliterated from within by Voyager surprising the fleet.  Admiral Paris and Lieutenant Barclay welcome Voyager home while Tom and B’Elanna welcome their daughter into the universe.  

Voyager heads home with an escort to Earth.  

The End.

Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:

I really don’t know what I was expecting for a series finale on Star Trek Voyager.  I mean, we all knew that, unlike Quantum Leap and Sam never returning home, Voyager would make it back home somehow.  The thing that bothers me is not the fact that they made it back home but how they made it back.  

Time Travel has always been a derisive tool in Star Trek, from the early events in TOS with the Guardian of Forever to even the feature films dangerously tinkering with events in time.  The problem with Time Travel is that it is an easy out for a series such as this despite all of the speech concerning the Temporal Prime Directive and how changing the past can have catastrophic effects on the future.   What really gets me is how it is Janeway who initiates this attempt in changing the past.  Many times Janeway has made it clear that such a thing is not only improper but completely irresponsible, especially the fact that she will be erasing over 30 years of history at the blink of an eye.   Who is to say that Voyager’s presence in the Delta Quadrant and it’s eventual return home did not have significant impact on a plethora of species and events in the known galaxy.  Heck, the events of Picard may have even played out quite differently seeing that Seven of Nine was not alive in the original future, you have to wonder, would any of the event has transpired at all?  Now, that isn’t to say that time travel should not have been used but to have it used so flagrantly and by Janeway herself is horribly out of character for the Janeway we know and love. It could have been anyone, like Harry in the episode Timeless or maybe even pull a note out of STNG’s history and have Miral Paris travel back in time to prevent her parents deaths.  Any number of other options could have been explored but, no, we had to have time travel. 

Then, to add insult to injury,   they looped in The Borg.  Since the appearance of Seven Of Nine, the Borg have been a massive player in the tapestry of Voyager.  This threat developed into a significant rivalry between Janeway and The Borg Queen that rivals that of Batman and The Joker.  These two are always at odds with one another and, after their last encounter it was pretty clear that the next time we saw the Borg Queen it would not be pleasant.  So, I was rather surprised when The Borg Queen didnt just assimilate Voyager the moment she saw them in the Nebula, especially with the fact that they nearly ran into one of the six existing Transwarp Nodes. If anything this is one of the biggest Deus Ex moments of the show, literally using a known technology to get them home.  Frankly, they should have went home a season prior and had a full season in the Alpha Quadrant as they adopted to their new life. Even a few episodes wrapping things up would have been great but no, the most we get is a firework display.  

Now, I know I sound like I am saying that this was a bad episode and it isn’t that. In fact, there were a lot of cool moments with Paris and Torres’ daughter, seeing Naomi Wildman’s daughter, showing Harry Kim as a Captain and of course the Doctor finally taking a name. There are also some interesting revelations in this that have yet to be wrapped up in any official capacity.  Seven started dating Chakotay for real in a relationship that just kinda came out of nowhere.  I could understand if there had been some interest earlier in the season but the most we got was Seven dating a holographic Chakotay.  Seems a little creepy at this point, I mean I wonder what Doctor Brahms would think….  Plus, now that we have seen Picard, we all know that relationship didn’t last but…whatever became of Chakotay in the future?  Who knows?

Then there is Tuvok and his mental issues.  It is established in this episode that this has been an ongoing concern between Tuvok and The Doctor.  The thing is, this is literally the first we have heard of this issue in the entirety of the series.  No hints, no suggestions, just a sudden, ‘oh yeah, Tuvok might have something like Bendii Syndrome so that sucks’.  This, of course, is used as one of the catalysts for Admiral Janeway to alter history but, much like that of the transwarp node, this is literally out of nowhere.   Had they established this as an ongoing arc it probably would have been a bit more impactful but no…not a thing.

  Unfortunately this is just not enough to make this a satisfying end for this seven year series.  As a series finale this feels like a cheap way to end a series that has had similar opportunities time and again.  Had this been a simple two part or a season finale with Future Janeway sacrificing herself to save Voyager and Voyager getting a boost closer to home, with a final season depicting them crossing the finish line themselves. That probably would have been a much more satisfying conclusion instead of the cheap shot that we got instead. 

Gleanings and Cool Bits:

  • 7 photon torpedoes fired, -40 remaining.
  • 0 shuttlecraft lost or destroyed, -6 remaining
  • Between the Time Crystals on Discovery and the Chronoton Deflector, what is it with Time Travel and Klingons?  If they have had this kind of access why have they not used it to conquer space?  Are they actually more civilized than humanity?
  • Note Admiral Janeway’s uniform and Combadge, it happens to be the same as the All Good Things Future as seen on STNG.   I have to wonder if this is not an alternate timeline now where not only did Voyager take another 20 years to get home but Picard and Crusher married and the Enterprise had three nacelles. 
  • If you pay attention you may recognize Alice Krige as the Borg Queen.  Alice also played this character in Star Trek First Contact and it is only appropriate for her to return once again. 
  • We really don’t know the extend of the damage done to the Borg in this episode. It is assumed that this event led to the freedom of the XD’s in Picard but that has not been officially established so far.  Plus, we only see the destruction of a single Trans Warp Node,  there are five more in existence…

So what’s next for LTTG’s Retro Tv Reviews?  How about we go back to the future and visit a ship called….Enterprise?  Until then…

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: Enterprise Season One Episode One: Broken Bow

For more reviews: check out the weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Thursday and for more retro TV goodness check out the rest of the Retro TV Reviews here.

As always, please feel free to comment below and share your experiences with these episodes as well. If you just happened by, tell me what you think! Don’t Forget To Follow me if you like the blog!

Late To The Game 4/23/2021

‘Whatever you do, whether you get back home or not, you CAN NOT promote Harry Kim. If you do, it will be detrimental to the future of everything. He MUST remain an Ensign. Promise me this.’

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.

Star Trek and all related marks, logos and characters are solely owned by CBS Studios Inc. This fan production is not endorsed by, sponsored by, nor affiliated with CBS, Paramount Pictures, or any other Star Trek franchise, and is a non-commercial fan-made production intended for recreational use.  No commercial exhibition or distribution is permitted. No alleged independent rights will be asserted against CBS or Paramount Pictures.”

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