The Great Star Trek Voyager Rewatch: Revulsion

When Voyager picks up a distress from a hologram whose crew has just died, Janeway sends B’Elanna and the Doctor to investigate. Meanwhile, Harry Kim is assigned to help Seven of Nine build an enhanced astrometrics bay.

I’ve been looking forward to this episode for ages. Star Trek has tried several times to do horror, and usually it fails, but here, it finally gets it just right. Dejaren is a brilliant antagonist who could be straight out of the likes of Criminal Minds, a seemingly mild mannered and nervous hologram who is actually disgusted by organic life forms – to the point of wanting to kill them. It’s well played, and his rants are certainly memorable. We even get the horrific sight of a hologram reaching in and grabbing B’Elanna’s heart – ouch!

The B-story is a lighter counterpoint to the heavy stuff going on in the away mission, as Harry and Seven work together for the first time. Naturally, Harry ends up falling for Seven, leading to an amusing exchange in which she seems willing to explore human sexuality with him. Although it seems inevitable that we’d see Harry getting a crush on Seven, I’m glad they didn’t turn it into a full blown relationship – it would have been too much geek wish fulfilment to have the Mary Sue ensign get the most beautiful woman on the ship.

Speaking of relationships, Tom and B’Elanna kiss for the first time in this episode. I actually liked their interactions here, as they felt more like friends exploring the possibility of a new level to their relationship than their usual antagonistic selves.

Points of Note

  • One from way back in The Gift; The Doctor says stimulating the growth of Seven’s hair follicles was a vicarious experience for him. Obviously, as a hologram, he could easily program hair for himself – personally, I’m glad we don’t have to see Robert Picardo in a toupee every episode, but presumably from an in-universe perspective, he has chosen to retain his current appearance.
  • The astrometrics lab will become an important place for Seven, and indeed is where she spends most of her time when not regenerating for the remainder of the series.
  • Tuvok finally earns a promotion to lieutenant commander in this episode. Amongst the stories at his promotion party is a tale of Tom and Harry essentially bullying him for an entire duty shift. You’ve got to love Starfleet pranks.
  • Paris reminds Kim of the time he fell for a hologram – namely during the events of Alter Ego last season.

Lost, crashed or destroyed shuttlecraft running total: 10

Possibly salvageable shuttlecraft running total: 6

Number of times the entire crew gets kicked off the ship: 2

Number of times Voyager gets destroyed: 1

Summary – Revulsion: “Look at you. Look at you! Grinding up bits of plants and animals with your teeth. Secreting saliva to force it down your esophagus into a pit of digestive acids. You can’t even stand to think about it yourself. What a repulsive creature you are, constantly shedding your skin and hair, leaving your oily sweat on everything you touch! You think that you are the height of intellect in the universe but you are no better than any filthy animal! And I am ashamed to be made in your image!”

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