It had been a long time since Voyager had gone into something. In the beginning it was the space-time anomaly of Parallax, then the artificial meteorite of Phage, then the nebula of The Cloud, recently the atmosphere of The 37’s planet, and today it’s the turn of a school of fish in love. And how could it be a decent episode with that premise? Not surprisingly, Elogium (it’s the term used for Ocampa puberty) isn’t decent, not even close.
It must be springtime on the USS Voyager, as Chakotay runs into two ensigns kissing in the turbolift (see the stunning image accompanying this post). Discussions start on the opportunity of having relationships and procreating so to have the crew’s children taking command of the ship in about 35 years time, halfway through the journey to the Alpha quadrant. At the same time, Kes begins to feel bad, and it turns out that she’s prematurely entering the only fertile phase of her life. She must have children now or never, basically. Also, the ship comes across some horribly CGI-made beings: without thinking twice, Janeway orders to get as close as possible, and it soon becomes clear that now the ship is trapped.
There are two subplots, and not one of them feels like a main plot, both are so silly! Plot A: Neelix has strong doubts about becoming a father, but he changes his mind thanks to a two-minute conversation with Tuvok (who, it turns out, has four children). Plot B: on the bridge, many worthless hypotheses are made about the behavior of the space beings which look like huge brown tadpoles (and I’m being generous here) and by pure coincidence eventually Voyager manages to break free. Then, Kes heals and off we go.
Ah, and at the end there’s a never-before-seen woman (Samantha Wildman, played by Nancy Hower) who suddenly realizes that she’s pregnant, even though she last saw her husband on Deep Space Nine. Now, I don’t know how long it’s been since the start of the mission (Memory Alpha might tell me, but that’s not the point), but we’re in season two, episode four, so I guess it’s been at least four or five months… and now she realizes she is pregnant? Wow!
Anyway, there’s nothing interesting in Elogium, which is almost always the case when Star Trek goes into love and passion territory (think of Fascination, Deep Space Nine’s Season 3…). Ciao!
PPS: The Delta Flyers podcast shout out: I was moved by the anecdote on the genesis of the name of Samantha Wildman. It was the name of a little girl who died in an accident and whose organs were donated by her parents. One of the kidneys went to the wife of Jimmy Diggs, screenwriter of Elogium, and since little Samantha liked animals, the character of the same name on Voyager is the head of the ship’s xenobiology division.
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