7 – Eye of the Needle

Grade: B+

Eye of the Needle (1995) on IMDb


Ensign Harry Kim has found a wormhole, not too far off their route back home. When they arrive at the wormhole, they find it is way too small for the ship to pass through it. In fact, it’s only about 30cm across (only about 12 inches). They send a microprobe into the wormhole and find out that it heads into the Alpha Quadrant. They use the microprobe to send a message into the Alpha Quadrant and hope for a reply.


This is a fantastic episode – by far the best one from this series up to this point, and possibly for a long time. I haven’t seen all of the Voyager episodes in several years, but this is one that I have remembered since the day I first saw it back in 1995. I don’t remember many Voyager episodes, but this is one is an exception.

It’s interesting that this is only the 7th episode of the series, and already we have our first nearly successful return home. Sometimes I wonder how they could have changed this series to make it more interesting and to add to the Star Trek universe, but there’s not much I would change about this episode – if anything.

What I do find very interesting is that Captain Janeway seems to be ready to transport people through the wormhole to the Alpha Quadrant. What would she do with the ship once she’s home? That’s never explained, but it’s probably not important. I’m sure someone would have brought it up sooner or later. But it’s something that I started to think about once the Doctor realized that he’d be abandoned there.

In terms of character development, I thought this episode was better than most. There were several conversations (Kes-Janeway, Kes-Doctor, Kim-Torres) which really helped establish these characters, and that makes for a very interesting series. Actually, it seems developing characters is far more important to the series than to any individual episode. But this episode had both an interesting story and some great character moments.

Of Note

A Romulan ship receives the message in the Alpha Quadrant, but according to the Star Trek maps of the galaxy, the Romulan Empire is in the Beta Quadrant. So this Romulan ship could have been somewhere inside Federation territory when the message was received.

Here’s something else that’s interesting that I didn’t think about until later. When the Romulan officer offers to warn Starfleet in 20 years that they should not send Voyager on the mission to the Badlands, Chakotay is the one who speaks up and says that he should not do this since the ship has already had a major effect in the Delta Quadrant, and we don’t know how it would change things if Voyager didn’t make that mission. Nobody says much after that, and we’re expected to accept that on face value. But Chakotay was not on Voyager when it was sent to the Badlands. So maybe he’s concerned about his own future. If Voyager hadn’t followed after him, maybe he’d be stuck there with his Maquis crew and his tiny ship all by themselves. So maybe that’s why he said the Romulan shouldn’t warn Starfleet.

At one point in the episode, Tuvok says there’s a 75% chance that the wormhole does not lead into the Alpha Quadrant. That would only be true if there are only 4 possible destinations that this wormhole could take them. Couldn’t the wormhole take them to someplace within the Delta Quadrant? Or maybe many different places within the DQ? Oh well, this isn’t that bad of an issue, but it’s still annoying that Tuvok would have been certain about this, when logically it’s not true.

At the end of the episode, Tuvok says that he checked the Federation database on the Romulan character and found out that he passed away. That’s sad, but I still don’t believe Voyager would have had this information just hanging around in their database when they left the Alpha Quadrant. And there’s no way they could have pulled up this information from a remote source in the Delta Quadrant either. Oh well.