The Cynics Corner

Star Trek: Voyager

"Scorpion, Part II"

by David E. Sluss

6 September 1997

 
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THE BOTTOM LINE
: The season opener was an interesting show to watch. Unlike many past Trek "cliffhangers," this was not a severe disappointment, but while generally entertaining, there were some aspects of the episode that don't survive any real scrutiny. On the other hand, the introduction of Seven of Nine was better than I expected (though admittedly, I didn't expect much), although there are some problems with her, conceptually, and we have yet to see her real, post-de-assimilation character.

CYNICS CORNER RATING: 6.5 (D)

EUNUCH OF THE WEEK: Species 8472, whose weaponry was severely emasculated in the second part of "Scorpion." These ships can destroy a Borg cube with one blast and a planet with one blast from ten linked ships in Part I, but now hundreds of bioships barely scar Voyager's hull, and an 8472 ship can't destroy Seven of Nine's cube before the cube's Dutch act? Snip, snip.

EUNUCH OF THE WEEK RUNNERUP: The Borg, who used to be menacing but between First Contact "Scorpion," and "I, Borg" have become so individualized that they hardly seem more menacing than Sela and her merry band of Romulans.

SILICON OF THE WEEK: Seven of Nine, who managed to portray an "individual Borg" fairly convincingly, I felt. While some aspects of her behavior seem silly, like typing on a Borg computer -- why would they even have keyboards? -- and saying aloud "We understand," while she and the other Borg on Voyager are still linked to the collective, I think that this character's introduction worked fairly well. On the other hand, we haven't seen the post-collective Seven of Nine, so there's plenty of time left to screw up the character.

SILICONE OF THE WEEK: Seven of Nine, obviously.

TEMPORAL ANOMALY OF THE WEEK: Seven of Nine. Assimilated eighteen years ago? How's that? Obviously, this was necessary so that when Paris introduces Seven to sexuality next week, it'll be clear that she is "of age." Otherwise, we'd get more Neelix/Kes-style hints of pedophilia.  

ETHNOCENTRISM OF THE WEEK: Seven of Nine. Human? There seems to be a sizable colony of Earthlings out there in the Delta Quadrant. Aren't there enough humans on the ship as it is?

WOODEN ACTOR OF THE WEEK: Jennifer Lien, but who can blame her?

DERIVATIVE ENDING OF THE WEEK: Chakotay linking to Seven and trying to bring forth her humanity in a scene which maps isomorphically onto Data linking to Locutus to bring forth his humanity in Next Generation's "Best of Both Worlds" [Menosky: "What happened to all the viewers?" Braga: "I put them all to sleep!"].

RESET BUTTON OF THE WEEK: Janeway's "All's well that ends well" speech to insubordinate Chakotay. It's been obvious since the eighth episode or so that sustained conflict amongst the crew was not going to happen despite all the pre-Voyager publicity to the contrary, but I had hoped... Bright side: the alternative, another one of Janeway's "I trusted you and you let me down" speeches, is just to horrible to contemplate.

EASILY SOLVED MYSTERY OF THE WEEK: "You'll never guess who's going to leave Voyager forever next week!" Ensign Wildman and her baby, of course; the actress missing from the opening credits is a red herring.
 

Next: "The Gift" NEXT WEEK: "The Gift"

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This review is copyright 1997 David E. Sluss
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