124 – Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy

Grade: B

Tinker Tenor Doctor Spy (1999) on IMDb


This episode starts out with the Doctor singing some opera music. Don’t worry; it doesn’t last too long. It turns out that the Doctor is having some daydreams. Meanwhile, some hostile aliens are studying Voyager to see if the ship has any items worth stealing. One of the aliens has tapped into the Doctor’s daydreams and misinterprets them as actual events.


When this episode started, and it showed Tuvok crying during the Doctor’s singing, I thought we were going to end up with a similar episode to the one when Sarek is crying. But it wasn’t like that at all. In fact, this episode was pretty funny.

OK, so if you’re like me, I know exactly what you’re thinking – “ugh, another Doctor-centric episode!” But actually, it isn’t bad at all. In fact, this is probably the funniest Voyager episode I’ve seen in a very long time. The opening scene is just flat out ridiculously funny. It’s also pretty funny to watch the Doctor’s fantasy daydreams. Honestly, I’m not sure why the Doctor would want to have his own daydreams, but like him, I would feel pretty violated if everyone suddenly knew mine.

Actually, I think my favorite parts of this episode are when the Doctor acts as the Emergency Command Hologram. He’s had to perform like this before, but this time it just really looks great. I loved the “photonic cannon” – it seemed like it was straight out of a Captain Proton episode. During these scenes, the music bore a striking resemblance to the Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves soundtrack. I don’t know if that was deliberate or of it was just a coincidence. It sounded like parts of the Main Title.

At one point during the Doctor’s daydreams, the warp core is going to explode. The computer announces it by saying “warp core breach a lot sooner than you think.”

All things considered, this is one episode I would probably want to watch again soon. I haven’t thought that about very many Voyager episodes, actually. But this was pretty decent.

Oh, in case you have heard, yes, this is the one in which the Doctor sketches a topless Seven. We don’t see anything, though. What’s funny about this scene is that Janeway says something like how he got the hands right – I’m not sure if that’s a reference to Titanic, when Jack shows Rose his drawings, but it certainly reminded me of it. For what it’s worth, I personally would be very creeped out by a Doctor who likes to draw sketches of his patients – especially while they’re undressed.

Of Note

The Doctor actually nerve-pinches Tuvok in this episode, which is kind of a twist on an old Star Trek cliché.

The film Galaxy Quest shows some aliens that view a TV show and misinterpret the show as historical documentaries. That was also used well for comedic effect.

The aliens in this episode return to the series two more times after this.