Voyager Torture features Vincent reviewing an episode of Star Trek Voyager that he’s seen for the first time and Chris Piers drawing an image based on that episode that he’s never seen.
A television series will have an episode featuring no new sets to save money. This is called a bottle episode and Star Trek is famous for having lots of them. This episode takes the concept a bit further by featuring the crew running down hallways for at least 3/4ths of the episode.
More on that in a second. When “Twisted” opens up the crew is having a birthday party for Kes. Which means that we get to have a B story where Neelix is a jealous penis hole. Great.
While that is going on, Tuvok is at the helm while the Voyager encounters a weird energy thing. Hold up. What are they doing? In the original series when confronted by a situation like this, they were in the middle of a mission. They had to get somewhere to save some people (lets say, deliver a vaccine), so not only are the lives of the crew in danger, but so are the people that they must save. It’s odd that Voyager is just tooling around in this episode. No explanation given as to what they’re doing or what their overall plan is.
As opposed to other Trek series, Voyager has no specific mission and but one purpose: To get home. What are they doing while having a birthday party? Dinking along in space? It would be nice if they had some sort of plan or at least a minor goal. This might seem like a small gripe, but the series would be much more compelling if there was at least some feeling of continuity or purpose. Is it too much to ask that our heroes have some sort of purpose? In this case, it would be really easy. You could have a Captain’s log saying, “We’re on the way to track down some possible Thinger Majigs to hopefully boost our warp drive. Also most of the crew is at a birthday party.”
Okay, back to the party. Kes is now two, because she has the lifespan of your average house fly. Neelix bakes an amazing cake (or so he says) and then Tom Paris gives Kes a really kick ass locket. Of course, this drives Neelix into a jealous rage, but instead of exploding right there he huffs and puffs about it a bit with Chakotay. I’ll give him credit for not overtly being an ass face right to her face at least.
Anyway, Tuvok can’t avoid the energy field thing. When trying to communicate the danger to the holodeck where everyone is partying, the message gets all garbled and weird. This prompts a quick end of the party. The crew breaks away to head toward the bridge, engineering, and wherever.
Neelix escorts Kes to her quarters. While walking down the hallway with Kes Neelix does this:
- Brings down Tom’s gift while trying to raise up his (because a cake is such an awesome gift).
- Insinuates that the reason Kes knows the crew quarters of fellow crew mates is because of illicit reasons.
- Implies that Kes doesn’t know where her own quarters are and at the very least, indicates she’s horrible at remembering things like directions.
And with all this Kes doesn’t get angry or show any kind of concern by this behavior. Kes is either used to being emotionally abused or just plain stupid. Any normal person would catch on that he’s being a huge asshole again and yell at him. But nope.
Anyway Kes realizes that a bunch of the rooms are in the wrong place. Janeway and company can’t find the bridge. And Torres is having a tough time finding engineering. Something is wrong!
To wrap this up fairly quickly, the energy field the ship is caught in is messing everything up. No matter what they try to get out of the situation, they fail. Most of all though, they walk down hallways. Seriously, most of this episode is crew members talking about stuff and walking… and walking…
I’m fine with all this rearranging of hallways and stuff. I like haunted house stories where the rooms move. However, it becomes fairly tedious after awhile. And logically it fails later on when they show how the ship is literally being twisted by the energy source thing. If it’s being twisted that badly, why are all the hallways not physically warped? Oh, I know. Budget.
The end is notable and fairly interesting in that they decide that the solution is to do nothing. I’ll give it to them. I predicted that they’d do some sort of fakey science thing and save the day. Instead, the crew accepts their fate. It was a fairly decent moment only made better by the fact that Neelix disappeared about half way through the episode.
Least Annoying Characters:
Paris, Kim, Chakotay, Torres
Most Torturous Moment:
Neelix being an asshole. Again.
Chris Art Accuracy: Chris presents us with a tender moment between Kes and Paris while Neelix stews in the background. While he doesn’t get this animated in his anger, it certainly captures is inner emotions. It also captures the way I look when I watch a typical episode of Star Trek Voyager.
Torture Score: 2 out of 5 Neelixes