86 – The Killing Game, Part 1

Grade: C+

The Killing Game (1998) on IMDb


A Klingon who sounds like Janeway fights with a Holodeck character. Suddenly a Hirogen warrior contacts Sickbay to help heal Janeway of her injuries. It seems the Hirogen have taken over the ship and have forced the crew to participate in fights to the death. Then the Hirogen make Voyager’s crew pretend to be fighting the Nazis in World War II. It’s up to Kim and the Doctor to try to find a way to take back the ship.


I think we’re supposed to like this episode, but personally, I don’t really care for it. It’s ironic in a way that this episode is about turning Voyager into one giant Holodeck. With the safety protocols turned off, the injuries are real but the stories are fake. Whenever people are injured, the Hirogen send them to Sickbay, have them patched up and re-sent into the Holodeck so they can fight again.

What I find strangely ironic is that this entire series seems to be just like this. We often have hostile aliens fighting with Voyager and causing all kinds of havoc. But then by the start of the next episode, the ship is in pristine shape and none of the crew seems to suffer any adverse effects because of it. And then we repeat the process.

And that really explains why I don’t like this episode. As soon as you see that this is taking place on the Holodeck, you know nothing that happens here will have any lasting effects. Even when the episode ends, with Chakotay leading the Americans through the destroyed doors of the Holodeck, you know nothing is going to be permanent. That’s a general problem for Holodeck episodes. By definition, you know they don’t matter one bit.

But it’s not all bad. I actually liked Harry Kim in this episode. I think he showed some strength and intelligence that he isn’t normally expected to show.

Of Note

It’s funny that the Hirogen officer in this episode is tired of this simulation. Yeah, that makes two of us, buddy.