STAR TREK: VOYAGER
Review by Mark Wiechman
Kate Mulgrew, Robert Beltran, Roxann Dawson, Jennifer Lien, Robert Duncan
McNeill, Robert Picardo, Ethan Phillips, Tim Russ, Garrett Wang, Jeri Ryan
Video: Full Frame 1:33:1
Audio: Dolby Digital Stereo and 5.1
Length: Seven discs, 19 hours, 53 minutes
Release date: September 28, 2004
in its fourth season Voyager continued
to evolve and go where no sci-fi series had gone before, it never hurts to add
another interesting character with tons of sex appeal.
Jeri Ryan, the excellent actress who went on to work on the series Boston
Public, joined the cast this year as a Borg designated simply as Seven of
Nine. She is rescued from the
collective and once she is free, she actually has many of her non-human
electronic appendages removed and her humanity restored.
This was the classic android cliché in reverse: the robot regains
humanity, and in a uniquely female way. Voyager
definitely added many exciting tales to the Battle with the Borg saga, and just
as members of other races served on Federation ships, now a Borg has joined the
ranks. Her relationship with
Captain Janeway is very complex, very feminine, and she also serves as a second
science prodigy with Tuvok.
there is no denying her voluptuousness, which doubtlessly added male fans to the
viewing audience, Ryan’s 7/9 is a very complex and interesting character.
Her remaining Borg features and complete obliviousness to her beauty make
her seem cold, yet ready to explode with childlike human emotions at any moment. This is probably because she was abducted by the Borg when
she was only a child. It is
only natural for TV executives to want sexually appealing characters, and there
are few women on television as attractive as Ryan.
But she also radiates intelligence and a regal charisma, which would
prevent her from ever being just eye candy.
This was a smart move for the series, which like most needed a little
extra something to spice things up after three seasons.
list: Scorpion, Part II, The Gift, Day of Honor, Nemesis, Revulsion, The Raven,
Scientific Method, Year of Hell, Part I; Year of Hell, Part II; Random Thoughts;
Concerning Flight; Mortal Coil; Waking Moments; Message in a Bottle; Hunters;
Prey; Retrospect; The Killing Game Pt. I; The Killing Game Pt. II; Vis-à-vis;
The Omega Directive; Unforgettable; Living Witness; Demon; One; Hope & Fear.
with prior seasons, the picture is crisp and clear, despite the fact that so
many special effects were done before the digital revolution and so many dark
scenes. I could not detect any
fiction rocks in 5.1!!! While the
rear speakers are not used as much as in some adventure movies such as X-Men,
they are still used mainly for background effects and explosions, and the
dialogue is still heard easily in the mix.
Voyager always featured excellent sound production and mixing, as good as
any on TV, and that translated well into the DVD mix.
season’s extras include an extensive interview with Garrett Wang, who plays
Ensign Harry Kim. He discusses how
his character evolved over seven seasons and includes clips from episodes in
future season releases. He also
discusses cruises with fans and his character’s romantic pursuit of Seven of
Nine. Extensive interviews
with Jeri Ryan are also presented as well as comments from producers about her
significance, especially in the face of rapid male fans who finally had a female
character with serious sex appeal and some criticism from female fans of the
character for that very reason. Also
included is a featurette on the origins of species 8472, who slaughtered the
Borg at will and might be one of the most frightening villains in the Star Trek
universe. They were also the first
fully CGI characters. There is also
a beautiful program about the art of Star Trek called “The Art of Alien
Worlds” and a photo gallery. Not
as interesting as some of the other seasons’ collections, but the Wang
interview is surprisingly candid and entertaining.