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Star Trek Voy - Season 1 - Episode 02

Star Trek Voy - 1x02 - Caretaker, Part II

Originally Aired: 1995-1-16

The crew races to save Torres and Kim. [DVD]

My Rating - 8

Fan Rating Average - 5.02

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- Voyager's transporter system seems to be more advanced than that employed by TNG, as noted by the new visual effect.
- This episode establishes that the Ocampa live only nine years.
- Janeway claims it would take 75 years to reach Earth from their current position. An accurate approximation.

Remarkable Scenes
- Neelix' introduction.
- Neelix' reaction to the transporter.
- Tuvok suggesting to Neelix that he take a bath.
- Neelix indulging himself in his quarters.
- Neelix annoying Tuvok.
- Neelix' successful manipulation of the events to save Kes.
- Janeway pulling the plug on the doctor.
- Tuvok discovering that the caretaker is dying.
- Paris saving Chakotay.
- The huge Kazon ship.
- Chakotay: "Tell one of your crackerjack Starfleet transporter chiefs to keep a lock on me!"
- Chakotay crashing his ship into the huge Kazon vessel.
- The Kazon ship crashing into the array.
- The Caretaker's final words.
- Janeway destroying the array.

My Review
Following in the tradition of the first part, Neelix and Kes are introduced very nicely in this episode. I like how Chakotay and Tom have settled their differences in this episode. When Tom saves Chakotay's life and asks about the Native American tradition which would dictate Chakotay's life belonging to Tom, Chakotay says "wrong tribe." But at the end of the episode, Janeway tells Tom that Chokotay mentioned something to her about his life belonging to Tom and that he'd be responsible for Tom's safety. He lied! Very funny. The Caretaker's complete motives are finally revealed in this episode, which brings up the moral dilemma regarding whether to use the array to get home or to destroy it to protect the Ocampa. Many fans call Janeway stupid for deciding to stay in the Delta Quadrant to protect the Ocampa, even Tuvok questions the decision in this episode, as does Torres. Janeway herself will question it a few times later in the series. Personally, I wish they had handled the decision in this episode a little differently. Think about it. The Kazon are all over that array like flies on garbage and Tuvok said it would take hours to configure it to send them back. Do you really think the Kazon are going to just sit there while Janeway and Tuvok are tinkering with the array for two hours? No, I don't think so. And for this reason, I say Janeway was forced into her decision, despite the fact that it seems she would have anyway. A fantastic pilot, probably the best pilot episode of any of the series.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Jim on 2008-09-19 at 10:49am:
    Stranding a few hundred people to save an entire species? I think this is a no-brainer, and it boggles my mind that people question it. 'oh, let's kill off an entire species so we don't have to make a long voyage' Amazing.
  • From JRPoole on 2009-01-07 at 5:38pm:
    I've decided to make my slow progress through Voyager as it originally aired in tandem with DS9. Though I'm familiar with the concept and the characters, I haven't seen very much of Voyager, so this is a little bit of a blind run.

    The pilot is much better than I thought it would be based on my perceptions of the series. Like DS9, this is a new, grittier Trek. While I still think DS9 has the best set of characters in all of Trek, the crew of the Voyager is interesting and, for the most part, well-done in this first episode. I think this may be the best premise for a series in the franchise as well: a crew thrown together 75 years from home in the most truly alien part of the galaxy we've seen yet.

    While I still give the nod to the inaugural episode of DS9 as the best pilot in the franchise, this is a close second, and I'm looking forward to the series much more than I expected.

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