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Star Trek Voy - Season 2 - Episode 04

Star Trek Voy - 2x04 - Elogium

Originally Aired: 1995-9-18

Synopsis:
Strange creatures accelerate Kes' reproductive process. [DVD]

My Rating - 4

Fan Rating Average - 3.23

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 37 9 12 9 9 20 8 5 4 7 2

Problems
- So if Ocampa can only reproduce once in their lifetime, exactly how does their species survive? Think about it. It takes two people to have a baby. For any population to remain stable, one couple must have at least two children; more than two is ideal!

Factoids
- This is Ensign Samantha Wildman's first episode.
- Tuvok has four children. Three sons and one daughter.
- A mention of the Breen! The Doctor mentions that the Breen are a warlike species in which pregnancy at a young age is common.
- Ensign Wildman's husband is stationed aboard DS9.

Remarkable Scenes
- Kes eating beetles. Holy nasty.
- Kes can't stop eating. Hah.
- Tuvok: "It appears we have lost our sex appeal, captain."

My Review
A sex episode! Er, well kinda. Lots of relationship stuff in this episode though. Chakotay sees people kissing in a turbolift, more of Neelix' jealousy over Tom's behavior, and of course the main plot with Kes entering puberty early, and the B plot with the space creatures trying to have sex with Voyager. The paralleling themes of the episode are skillfully woven together, but the subject matter just doesn't interest me at all. It seems to me that Chakotay was right, relationships are going to be necessary. For a 75 year trip, it's going to have to be a generational one. Since it's all so obvious, skillful or not, cramming a bunch of relationship stuff into a single episode seems overkill. Though I was pleased to see in the ending the story run full circle when Ensign Wildman proclaims her pregnancy. That was tactful and appropriate; we'll be seeing more of this later.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From askthepizzaguy on 2010-08-11 at 10:21pm:
    You know, I watched the entire Voyager series start to finish several times, and I never noticed the Ocampan reproduction problem.

    9 year life span, one child per couple, wow. They definitely should not even exist as a species. Well caught.
  • From zooky on 2011-08-09 at 7:19pm:
    Maybe it's just the Ocampa females who can reproduce only once. Males may be able to do it more often, so that accounts for their survival as a species. Of course, that implies they are not a monogamous society, an that their male/female ratio is nowhere near 50/50. As far as we know, that's consistent with what we know about them.
  • From Kethinov on 2011-08-10 at 3:30pm:
    Unless there are significantly more females born than males, it still doesn't work.
  • From Anon on 2011-11-09 at 10:51pm:
    I haven't seen the series past this episode, but is it possible that the Ocampa have litters & not just one baby at a time like humans.
  • From Inga on 2013-07-28 at 10:35am:
    "Of course, that implies they are not a monogamous society"

    Kes mentioned in a later episode that the Ocampa choose their mates for life and that there is no jealousy or betrayal.
  • From Damien Bradley on 2017-01-03 at 3:14pm:
    I like Kes a lot. I wonder if all Ocampa are as emotionally mature as she is, or if she's just exceptional in her own right. I liked seeing another side of her here, acting seemingly out of character, not in control of herself. I also liked seeing her getting angry at Neelix's jealousy. Even the most calm and composed of people would get annoyed at that after long enough.

    The Ocampa must have litters if they reproduce only once. If all females only produce one child, no matter the female/male ratio, they'd die out. Even if all members of a species reproduced at a one-to-one rate, they'd die out too, because not all would reproduce before dying.

    I loved the scene between Neelix and Tuvok. When Tuvok said that a parent could teach skills equally to sons and daughters both, I yelled "THANK YOU TUVOK!" It was nice to see the show make such a clearly progressive statement. The scene reminded me of the song "My Boy Bill" from Carousel, where the character singing, Billy, after a whole song about what a strapping lad he'll raise, suddenly realizes his kid might be a girl. Duh!

    I agree about the overkill. I do like episodes that have themes to them, but I prefer if if they don't bash us over the head with it. Four different plot threads or conversations all about reproduction all happening at once is a little much. And yeah, it should be a given that they'll have to reproduce if they're expecting a 75-year trip. There are worse things than being raised on a cushy starship complete with holodecks.

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