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Category:    Home > Reviews > Science Fiction > TV > Adventure > Space Opera > Star Trek: Voyager - Season Three

Star Trek Voyager – Season Three


Picture: C+     Sound: B-     Extras: B-     Episodes: B-



So by now, for its third season, Star Trek Voyager had come into its own and much faster than The Next Generation did.  That did not make it a better show or more progressive, but it did establish it as its own separate show enough.  For that, the producers deserve credit and the effort and ambition put fourth to make this the best season yet is commendable, even if the result is not up to the par.


For one thing, the same flat acting style continued in a way that undermined the series and as it ran this way through other series, eventually caused the implosion of the entire Star Trek franchise.  The acting was not as good as the feature films and not as amusingly classic as the original series.  The quasi-militaristic direction of the franchise brought it to a somewhat dehumanized state and it was very slowly wiping away Gene Roddenberry’s original vision of what this show was supposed to be about.


The ideas of exploring space with an optimistic, progressive outlook was slowly being eclipsed by a Blade Runner wanna-be vision that was about nothing and said nothing much.  The Voyager characters became developed enough at this point to do more with them than was being done, and Kate Mulgrew’s Captain Janeway is even given a love interest.  Instead of undermining her character, as it does on most female lead TV series (think Bionic Woman), it actually helped her here.


Having happened after the feature film Star Trek – First Contact (1996), The Borg are reintroduced for this 1996-1997 season in clever new ways that made for the highlight of the entire series to date.  That even ends the season.  Q, who becomes even more interesting in this series than in The Next Generation, starts to surface more in this part of the franchise.  The episodes are as follows:


Basics Part II


The Chute

The Swarm

False Profits


Sacred Ground

Future's End Part I

Future's End Part II


The Q and the Grey


Fair Trade

Alter Ego


Blood Fever




Favorite Son

Before and After

Real Life

Distant Origin


Worst Case Scenario

Scorpion Part I


The show definitely is hitting some kind of stride here, but the aforementioned limits just hold it back too much, but that was also the language and form of the show at this point and the core audience was set.  If I were not forced to watch these three seasons, I would not have as much respect as I do for it now, but I also see how the whole franchise slowly went down.  This burned out Roddenberry’s original vision and what was here managed to still be a hit, but it is DVD right now keeping it alive more than anything else.  All of Star Trek was considered an evergreen franchise that would always be a huge success, but Paramount and the producers have overextended this second generation of Trek, but no next step was considered and that is why the feature films have ended for now and only the odd Enterprise series is alive.  We deserve better and so especially do fans.  It will be up to Paramount and the producers to decide to take the big risk that brings the greatness of Trek out of its unnecessary slumber.  Here, they got back only to a few basics, but not enough at the season’s beginning to keep the franchise alive fully to today.  There are more good moments, but also some strange ones.

The full frame image is still softer than it should be.  As compared to the first season box, this is similar to the second season set very slightly more refined and Paramount decided to put even more money into the show.  In one supplement, a producer talks about the show not being on the cutting edge with digital effects, but there is still so much digital imaging used that it is still counterproductive to the narrative.  Shots that should not be looking digital and soft are ever obnoxious throughout.  This will still look a bit better than the broadcast equivalent, but only some fans will tolerate it.  The sound is once again remixed for Dolby Digital 5.1 AC-3 and 2.0 Stereo with Pro Logic surrounds.  They are still about even this time, with the 5.1 not sounding as phony as it did in the first box, but it is far from the best 5.1 mix, even for a TV show.  The .1 LFE/subwoofer signal is somewhat of a plus here, but some fans might still again prefer the 2.0 mix.

Extras include Braving The Unknown: Season 3, Voyager Time Capsule - Neelix, Voyager Time Capsule – Kes, Flashback To Flashback, Red Alert - Amazing Visual Effects, Real Science with Andre Bormanis and Lost Transmissions - interviews.  They are all interesting, but some of them are building a larger picture of the entire cast and their characters that should really add up by the time the entire series arrives on DVD.


-   Nicholas Sheffo


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