Who’s Hunting the Hunters

Story: Prey
Written By: Brannon Braga
Series: Star Trek: Voyager
Year: 1998

Yet another episode in Voyager’s growing Hirogen arc, this episode is a definite step up from the previous episode. It involves Voyager trying to help a wounded Hirogen, only to find it’s prey is actually Sepcies 8472. This puts two of Voyager’s biggest threats on board the ship with them. The real conflict though comes between Janeway and Seven, as Seven refuses to help Janeway or the crew in any attempts to help send the wounded Species 8472 back to where it came from.
It is a solid argument, Janeway wants to help anything sentient or wounded no matter the personal risk to herself or her crew, while Seven would rather just get rid of the cause of all their pain and save EVERYONE on board the ship. Janeway is always risking everyone for her own selfish reasons, it was nice to see someone not only stand up to her, but not back down or tell Janeway she was right all along in the end. Seven sticks to her guns, and brings up a valid point: Janeway has been encouraging Seven to be an individual, but now punishes her individual thinking after Seven sent the Hirogen and the 8472 onto a Hirogen ship.

I’m personally with Seven all the way here. Janeway comes off like a tyrant all too often. I think in their attempts to make Janeway appear to be a strong female lead, they went so far that she almost becomes a villain. She is too strong willed, too stubborn, too willing to risk hers and everyone around her’s life, and is proven to be so “perfect” in her decision making and getting results in that she becomes an irritating character. I like a character with some flaw, but her flaws are ignored and treated as good traits. Picard had flaws, but he was able to balance out his flaws with actual skills. His flaws were treated as such in the writing, but Janeway’s flaws seem to not be apparent to the writers. She is the Captain therefore she is always right. That line of thinking goes against everything Starfleet should believe in. If the Captain is almost always needing to be questioned in her decision making, then the Chief Medical Officer should promptly relieve him/her of command. That is how it works. Starfleet shouldn’t follow orders blindly, it should be much more advanced than that.

I liked this episode, but I still hate this ship’s Captain. My reasons are not because she is a woman, for I could care less about that. My reasons are purely because I think she is a homicidal maniac, who at times acts like Gollum (“we’s loves the crew, WE’S KILL THE CREW!”). That is really it, I just hate Janeway.

NEXT TIME: Seven vs. The Merchant