When Seven of Nine’s ship-wide efficiency report reveals that three members of the crew are underperforming, Janeway decides to intervene. She takes the three crewmembers on their first ever away mission on the Delta Flyer, but what’s meant to be a straightforward outing soon turns into something more dangerous.
Good Shepherd is an episode that Star Trek doesn’t really need. We already have Lower Decks for the junior officers’ perspective, and Learning Curve for the struggling crewmen – Good Shepherd is essentially trying to fill a niche that doesn’t exist. None of the new characters are particularly interesting, whilst their mission is dull in the extreme. By the end, it’s a relief to get back to Voyager and just see everyone get on with their lives – with these three problem crewmembers never to be mentioned again.
Points of Note
- These three difficult officers are all Starfleet officers, not ex-Maquis, and yet they’ve been performing worse than anyone else on the ship.
- Chakotay suggests that these three officers should just be taken off duty because they’re not contributing. In earlier seasons, it was said that it needed to be all hands on deck to run Voyager successfully, and we’ve lost crewmembers since then.
- Tal is the first Bajoran we’ve seen on Voyager who isn’t a former Maquis.
- Given the small display screen on a PADD, it looks really difficult to do maths or study equations on it – you can only see a couple of lines at a time!
- Ultimately, no one seems to care that Harren murdered an alien and provoked a species who may not have been unfriendly.
- Janeway is a starship captain, and yet can hold her own in cosmology with someone who holds five advanced degrees in the subject. That’s either really awesome or downright implausible.
- Janeway likes Neelix’s cooking so much that she orders one of his recipes from the replicator.
Lost, crashed or destroyed shuttlecraft running total: 17
Possibly salvageable shuttlecraft running total: 10
Number of times the entire crew gets enslaved or kicked off the ship: 3
Number of times a version of Voyager gets destroyed: 5
Summary – Good Shepherd: In which Janeway takes some underperforming officers under her wing, for one week only.