Again, thanks to Netflix, JPFmovies has been able to “binge” on various T.V. series that, for whatever reason, were not watched over the years. Without giving away our age, the JPFmovies’ crew had just started law school when the Voyager series began its run and our T.V. watching was at a minimum. So, reviewing series that are twenty something years old will hopefully give a fresh perspective on the eve of the next Star Trek franchise move “Discovery.”
Voyager had a lot of potential but just seemed to leave it in the Alpha quadrant so to speak. Running when Star Trek was at the height of its popularity, Voyager managed to sink whatever gains TNG and DS9 made for the Star Trek fans/franchise. Many blame producers Rick Berman and Brannon Braga for letting a potentially great story-line turn into milk-toast—which is what Voyager was at best—milk-toast.
Reading many many other reviews of Voyager on the internet, JPFmovies realized that while we thought Voyager was a bust, Trek fans were ruthless in their criticism of the show. One site went so far as to have a mock-trial of the court martial of Capital Janeway. Now that is some hardcore criticism—we here at JPFmovies can be ruthless, but have yet to be that ruthless over our 5-year run.
After reading many of those blogs about Voyager, we here at JPFmovies pretty much have to agree with the Star Trek consensus on the value of the series. Forget that there is a completely politically correct cast (in the mid-to-late 1990’s when PC was at the height of it power) there is the native American, the female Captain (which was a good idea), the African American security officer, the female engineer and the white guy, Tom Parris, a convicted criminal who is basically on parole when assigned to Voyager. The picture of the cast is a multi-cultural rainbow. Ok we can get beyond that if the characters are well written, good stories are followed and the acting is even satisfactory. With the exception of a few fine episodes sprinkled throughout each season, the vast majority of the series was mired in inconsistencies which anyone knows will drive Star Trek fans crazy. And though we here at JPFmovies are clearly not Sci-Fi fans, but the sheer number of story inconsistencies even got on our nerves.
So much potential: a mixed crew of outlaws (the Marquis) and the spit and polish Star Fleet personal is abandoned really after the first couple of episodes; gritty themes about energy and supply shortages necessary for survival also abandoned after the first couple of episodes with an annoying alien (Nelix) supposedly acting as a cook-tour guide through the Delta quadrant; and let’s just say it when having to choose between survival and the prime directive, throw out the prime directive—to be fair this was addressed in a few episodes very very early on in the series. So what did the producers do to keep the series afloat to that magical 100-episode syndication threshold? Brought on a blond in a cat suit, discovered that the holographic doctor could actually act (but then used him a crutch) and the Borg. While the show limped through its 7 seasons, it also set up Enterprise (previously reviewed) to fail.
There is just too much to write to fully explain all of these points. One thing JPFmovies did read that we could not believe, was that the studio was receiving hate mail and BOMB THREATS as a result of its decision to go with a female Captain. Take it easy, it is just a T.V. show after all.