118 – Relativity

Grade: B

Relativity (1999) on IMDb


We see a Federation shipyard, and suddenly Janeway beams aboard the ship. She gets a tour of the “new” ship Voyager and discusses personnel issues with the Admiral who is showing her around. Suddenly, Janeway sees an Ensign on the Bridge, and when she turns around, we can see it’s Seven of Nine, but she appears to be fully human. Is this some kind of alternate reality?


Probably the best way to describe this episode is simply “fun.” You can’t really think too hard about this one, because it doesn’t really make any sense. It seems even the actors knew this episode would be silly, but at least they played it the way it should have been.

I rated it a little low, however, because I really think the plot should make some kind of sense, even if the whole purpose is to make fun of itself. So here’s what I mean. Near the end of the episode, when Captain Braxton is arrested for crimes he supposedly “will” commit, it’s actually for crimes he committed in the past. At some future point, he will go back into the past and commit sabotage and try to destroy Voyager. So it’s not really crimes he will commit, but crimes he already has committed. But then what really bugs me is that since he has been apprehended, that means he will no longer commit these crimes, so therefore, the crimes didn’t actually happen, did they? Sorry.

Also in this episode, there are two errors made when the action turns to the first day that Janeway is on the job. First, she talks about bringing Tom Paris onto the ship as a pilot. However, Paris wasn’t originally brought on board for this purpose. Instead, he was brought as an observer who could help them track down the Maquis. The second error is when they activated the holographic Doctor. But during the original pilot episode, Voyager had a human Chief Medical Officer who was assigned to the ship. He died during a battle, and that’s why Voyager had to activate the EMH. It’s because of errors like this that I have to rate this a little lower. But it’s such a fun episode that maybe I can overlook these errors to some extent.

Of Note

The character of Captain Braxton appeared in Future’s End, but he was played by some other actor.

During this episode, the Doctor leaves Sickbay and turns to another Voyager crewman in a blue uniform and tells him to take over. So who is this guy, and why does Tom Paris need to spend so much time in Sickbay if there’s someone else who can take over?