SF Debris – Star Trek (VOY): Demon

Opinionated Voyager Episode Guide looks at Demon, named after a hostile planet type no sane person would ever approach. So Voyager decides to land the whole ship on it.

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  1. “500 Degrees Kelvin”

    Oy vey…
    1. The term “degree” is not used on the Kelvin scale. It’s just “500 Kelvin”
    2. For the “most inhospitable type of planet for humanoid life”, that seems kinda low. Our next door neighbor Venus has an average mean temperature of 735 K!

    • And I imagine Venus would also be on that list. Once you are past: Oven hot and air quality of chlorine gas they are all “Class Y”.

      • Perhaps.

        Oh, and of the probes WE sent to Venus lasted far longer than Voyager’s did on this planet!

        • There might be an in-universe explanation for that:

          When we send probes to Venus, we know what kind of horrible conditions they will have to endure. But we don’t have energy-shielding technology, so we just have to build them to be physically tough.

          The Federation, on the other hand, does have shielding technology, so they don’t feel they have to make the probes as tough. With the power conservation in effect, they probably felt they couldn’t spare enough power to a probe to allow for energy shielding.

          Or it could just be a terrible scientific error on the part of the writers. Yeah, I think I’m going to stick with that.

  2. Wasn’t there some episode after this showing those duplicates following Voyager?

  3. Oh Harry, no one gives a damn about your and your backstory least of all the writers.

  4. I’m surprised you didn’t mention that Kobo e-readers are apparently banned for their drain on ships systems, but the energy needed to maintain an operational medical ai and manifest itself as a hologram? Yah, we can spare that.

    Oh Voyager, stuff like that is why I gave up on you, only to come back to see the Rock lay a rock bottom on the crew.

    • Well to be fair, the medical AI is the only medical professional they have on board. Shutting him off would leave them without a doctor at all.

      • There is an “E” at the start of his name for “Emergency”. They could shut him off until someone actually needed medical care.

        • I’ll simplify my comment for you: if you don’t watch the show or know about it, you don’t get to complain. He’s their FULL DOCTOR. That’s kinda the point of his character.

          • Yes, but he turns off, and it takes about two seconds to reactivate him. He doesn’t NEED to be active all the time. It’s not like turning him off will destroy him, or that they need a doctor 24/7.

            That’s like saying that the human doctor characters on other ST shows should never sleep because that would leave the ship without a doctor.

      • And it’s not like there aren’t other doctors and nurses on the ship that are trained in medical procedures. Seven could just assimilate the skills, Tom is trained as a nurse, and I’m sure there would be others that could take care of medical situations. But nope, Tuvok bans literature, lets one of their few trained nurses go on a a dangerous away mission, and lets an unnecessary drain on engergy like the EMH just annoy everyone in sick bay.

        I’m wondering, is Tuvok vulcan for A-Hole? If it isn’t, it should be. No wonder he’s Janeways go-to goon.

        • It’s been established from the beginning that there aren’t other doctors on the ship, that’s why they have to use the medical hologram all the time. It’s one of the few things Voyager has been consistent on. Ergo he’s not unnecessary since, if they shut him down as you suggest, they wouldn’t have a doctor.

        • You don’t get to complain about the show if you know so little about it, that the Doctor fought hard to be seen as a fucking living being and not something that could just be shut off. There is a whole episode about how it’s wrong to just shut him off like a machine. And it’s early enough on that if you “gave up” on the show, you should know about it.

          And he has a mobile emitter, meaning he doesn’t necessarily take up any of the ships power.

          • Of course, it’s also demonstrated that he doesn’t see other holograms as living beings unless it suits him, since he murdered another sentient EMH.

    • Actually they could have addressed the issue by simple having the the Doctor use his mobile emitter.

      (There’s also the really stupid fact they established early on in the series that the power supplies used for the holodecks aren’t compatible with the rest of the ship.)

      • thespecialneedsgroup

        There’s something I’ve always wondered about that particular voodoo shark, and anyone with a firmer grasp of thermodynamics is encouraged to educate/ridicule me:

        Since the power used by the holodeck is incomparable with the rest of the ship, and is apparently generated from a different fuel source (Voyager runs its holodecks even when the ship is starved for deuterium), would it be possible to have the holodeck conjure up a power plant capable of generating energy that *can* feed into the ship’s main power? This would obviously be ludicrously inefficient–you’d be expending a huge amount of energy to keep that plant running–but you’d be trading a bunch of energy that you *can’t* use, for a small amount that you *could*. It wouldn’t solve Voyager’s energy problems, but it might keep the Doctor and a few extra replicators on-line.

        • You could, but you’d probably be stuck with mechanically produced energy, which would be just too little for anything.

          Not that it makes any sense, since the tech they are using in the Voyager holodeck is just holograms and forcefields. Even if they minimize the forcefields, forcefields tech is just a normal part of the ship. And so it light.

          Far better would have been to say it uses so little energy (in low energy mode–basically just holograms) that turning it off completely seems pointless. It would maybe get them an extra replicator meal or two.

        • Or even just generate some nice fires and lights, in a pleasant Lothlorien-like holographic paradise so the crew can hang out there and sleep until the crisis is over.

  5. I always find it hilarious that despite being hundreds of years in the future with a mankind paradise and the elimination of racism and prejudice for humans, Americans still call them “Indians”. The casual indifference (or racist views) of Columbus continued into our utopian future.
    Seriously, “Aboriginals”? “Native Americans”? “First Nations”? No? Ah, 90s racism, don’t ever change.

    • It could simply be that, with the strong sentiments of racism pretty much gone, the terms themselves simply don’t invoke the same offensive feelings, and so people are more comfortable using them and don’t get as offended by them. Frankly, I think that situation would be much easier on people, considering that these days, we have to come up with new terms for every people group just about every other day because someone somewhere will find whatever we call them to be offensive.

    • Actually, many of them call themselves “Indians”. They seem to have taken ownership of the word, much like African Americans and the ‘N’ word. Actually, I’m not so keen on the “__-Americans” trend anyhow, especially in a future where many humans are born and raised on other planets and nowhere near America (either the country or the continents). Really, to a humanity which has long since expanded beyond Earth, none of the terms work. Calling them “native”-anything doesn’t apply unless they’re actually living in the place where they would be considered native. “Aboriginal” implies a very primitive lifestyle, and also is usually (if inaccurately) associated with the native people of Australia, neither of which applies here. “First Nations” doesn’t work either since – well they never really had a concept of “nations” by any common definition, and even if they did – they’re not living in said nations even today, let alone in the future that Voyager is set in. Really, the only term you can use that isn’t somehow wrong would be the actual name of the specific tribe they belong to or self-associate with, and even that isn’t always possible in the cases where cultural history has been lost or forgotten.

    • American Indians tend to prefer the term Indian. They tend to view “Native American” as a way to cover up for how white people treated “Indians.” They don’t see themselves as Americans, either, since America was name that came after their various tribes were established.

      “Native American” is treated basically like “African American,” i.e. okay when being overly formal, but otherwise strange. They prefer to be called Indians, the same way black people prefer being called black.

  6. Considering the deuterium thing: aren’t he ships Bussard collectors (the red things in front of the warp nacelles)designed specifically to obtain deuterium? I know it’s on the nerdy side of argument to address something like that, but back in the day of TNG they put in some real effort to create a plausible futuristic technology (with various degrees of success) and it’s just a shame to see Voyager’s authors ignore so blatantly just to further their plot.
    But this episode is putting on high heels to tap-dance on the back of common sense anyway, as was pointed out repeatedly in this review.

    • Unless I miss my guess, in this episode, they’re trying to claim that the concentration of deuterium is much lower in the Delta Quadrant than in the Alpha (or at least in that region of DQ). Thus, the collectors aren’t able to pull enough out of the surrounding space, and they have to try to find a concentrated supply.

    • The way it is set up in these earlier episodes, it really seems like deuterium is not the same substance that we call deuterium these days. Only later on in Voyager do they seem to fix this.

  7. It’s a testament to your restraint, SF Debris, that you heard Neelix talk about how “Durex is essential” without making the obvious joke. Kudos, sir.

  8. If these are the quality fo comments we’re going to get on the show, I think I’m going to stick with talking to people on YouTube. We have two people who don’t even know enough about the show to know that the Doctor is not just a machine.

    • If that were a legitimate argument, Chuck would have brought it up.

    • You certainly are excessively butthurt over a legitimate point, namely that the doctor should frankly be VOLUNTEERING to turn himself off or switch to his mobile emitter. If flesh-and-blood members of the crew aren’t even allowed to use non-power-draining items like blankets or physical books, then it seems a wee bit ridiculous to claim that the Totally A Person EMH should be allowed to keep draining power so he can prance around causing trouble.

      Then again, he apparently views the sickbay not as an essential part of the ship used for the good of all, but as his personal kingdom. Not even the office, which is his own, but the BEDS. There’s no empathy in his actions, so I doubt he’d care about the fact that the whole ship is dying.

      Oh, and Chuck doesn’t always bring up every point that can be made. Like, for instance, how the finger-duplicating thing is copied directly from the superior TNG episode “Aquiel.” Doesn’t mean it wasn’t copied.

      • thespecialneedsgroup

        Regardless of the logic, I actually kind of liked the character development that is implied by leaving the Doctor on. In the first or second season, nobody on Voyager would have thought twice about shutting the Doctor off to save power. By season four, though, no one even considers it as an option. All of the squatters in sickbay would have had to do to get a good night’s sleep was say, “Computer, end program.” They didn’t, though; implying that they’ve come to respect him as more than just a computer program.

        It would have been nice, though, if he had volunteered to go off-line for a while. It would have been a great character moment for him. It also might have been one for Janeway, who could have been shown to be struggling with that decision.

  9. See, it would have been funny if someone had beamed out the real Nelix because the liquid creature thought he was to repugnant to duplicate so they took the opportunity and got rid of him.

  10. when blip close have fought of dailymotion

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