Voyager has to power down in order to enter a Class-J nebula, and that means that someone needs to look after the Borg children when their regeneration cycle is interrupted. Neelix decides to pass the time by telling them a scary story about a deadly life form that once took over the ship.
The latter half of Voyager season six has been largely disappointing, and it feels like it all culminates here, in the “stupid ghost story” episode. It’s deliberately left ambiguous as to whether Neelix’s story is true or not (although strongly implied that it is largely true), so I’ve personally decided to disregard it, just because I can’t really face another derivative story about a dangerous but not actually evil energy being. I also care very little for the ‘ghost story’ framing device, since it brings us more of all the characters I care little for – namely Neelix and the Borg children. For me, this is an episode to be endured rather than enjoyed.
Points of Note
- Neelix’s fear of nebulas is said to be left over from a time when Talax (and presumably Rinax) was engulfed in a plasma storm. What isn’t linked into this narrative is the nihilophobia he experienced in Night. In fact, I’m pretty sure back then it was already suggested that he install curtains in his quarters, and yet he still hasn’t done it. Not that I can talk – it takes me ages to get around to doing DIY.
- Why does Kim order everyone to go to their posts? Surely this will just result in too many people milling around getting in everyone’s way? Also, why would Neelix possibly be needed in the mess hall? I guess they do sometimes take excess casualties there, but it feels like Neelix is left there (with a pan left on an active burner for four hours) for no good reason. Maybe someone might need a snack at some point.
- Ensign Tal Celes from Good Shepherd makes a return appearance here, which I had completely forgotten about.
- Neelix initially suggests reading a Flotter story to the children. I got the impression that Flotter was for very young children, so only really Mezoti would be young enough for it.
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 – The Haunting of Deck Twelve: Voyager’s ghost story episode.