The Cynics Corner

Star Trek: Voyager

"Year of Hell, Part I"

by David E. Sluss

11 November 1997

 
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THE BOTTOM LINE
: The Krenim alter history in an attempt to restore their lost empire. Meanwhile, Voyager is getting clobbered by the restored Krenim, even as they struggle to sell First Contact videotapes.

CYNICS CORNER RATING: 7.0 (C-)

NEW TECHNOLOGY OF THE WEEK: Is it the Krenim's "temporal incursion" gizmo? No, it's the Built-In Reset Button [TM] which makes its stunning debut in this two-parter. It's kind of a shame that nothing in this episode will turn out to have ever really happened once the timeline is fixed in part two. There were some damned interesting things going on in this show, which just begs the question: Why can't anything interesting happen in Voyager's real universe? Unfortunately, like counting up the number of licks it takes to get to the Tootsie-Roll center of a Tootsie-Pop, the world may never know.

OLD TECHNOLOGY OF THE WEEK: The long-awaited astrometrics lab, which doesn't look any more sophisticated than the one the Enterprise-D had in Generations.

SUCKER OF THE WEEK: It's got to be Captain Janeway. Why would she accept at face value the story the Zaal representative told about the Krenim? She's been deceived and lied to often enough that she should have been a little more circumspect. For all she knows, the Zaal engaged in a genocidal war against the Krenim to gain that territory. I'm thinking specifically about "Alliances," in which she was taken in hook, line, and sinker by the Trabe, just because the representative was charming and had a well-rehearsed sob story to tell. You'd think she would have learned from that experience and others like it. In the end, it didn't matter, since the Zaal were wiped from the timeline, but you have to wonder.

ILL-CONCEIVED ALIEN NAME OF THE WEEK: Annorax?? That's pretty thin, if you ask me.

CRASH-AND-BURN OF THE WEEK: William T. Chakotay thought that cheap, replicated bauble would impress Kathy into the sack. Don't let the door hit you on the way out, chump.

MARKETING PLOY OF THE WEEK: The ... uh ... cynical attempt to sell First Contact videos. Funny, those were only recently priced to sell through. Coincidence? You decide.

MARKETING PLOY OF THE WEEK RUNNERUP: The "special effects special" Kate and Jeri kept plugging during the commercial breaks. Sorry, ladies, you'll have to do better than that to get me to watch The Sentinel. What? Sure, I'm open to suggestions....

FILM HOMAGE OF THE WEEK: The "temporal incursion" looked a lot like the NYC-blaster in Independence Day.

FILM HOMAGE OF THE WEEK RUNNERUP: Gee, Sulu broke his lucky tea-cup too...
 

Previous: "Scientific Method"
Next: "Year of Hell, Part II"
NEXT WEEK: Watch out for the Extra-Large reset button.

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This review is copyright 1997 David E. Sluss
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