Saturday, December 12, 2009

Tom, get us out of here

Several years ago, a friend gave me a blank book that I never got around to using, probably because it's too small for writing comfortably in for long periods of time. But fortunately it was within grabbing distance a few months ago while I was watching an episode of "Star Trek: Voyager" that featured a line of dialogue so astonishingly cheesy, I had to record it right away. And so a tradition was born.

This book is now filled with only the most superlative dialogue from "Voyager" — the most melodramatic, the most pseudo-scientific, and, yes, the most actually eloquent.

I just finished watching the last season of "Voyager" and, in preparation for writing a review of the whole series to follow up on an earlier review I did, I am now going to list my favorite of these quotations.

My exercise started with "Demon" — a show from the fourth season, just a bit past the halfway mark of the series — so it won't include any gems you might have noticed from earlier episodes.

As a sidenote, you can tell from my list which characters ultimately became the focus of the series. Captain Janeway (Kate Mulgrew) notwithstanding, the pseudo-humans were really highlighted, mainly Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan), the part-cybernetic woman rescued from the Borg, and the Doctor (Robert Picardo), the hologram created in the image of a human. Vulcan Tuvok (Tim Russ), my favorite character, also had some good dialogue.

Here are the quotations:

"I'm having trouble with the nature of individuality." — Seven, to Janeway (from "Latent Image").

"Proposing the same flawed strategy over and over again will not make it more effective, Ensign." — Tuvok, to Harry Kim (from "Extreme Risk").

"With all of these new personalities floating around, it's a shame we can't find one for you." — The Doctor, to Tuvok (from "Infinite Regress").

"Remember the temporal prime directive. ... Try to avoid time travel." — Lieutenant Ducane, to Janeway (from "Relativity").

"Oh, the almighty temporal prime directive. Take my advice, it's less of a headache if you just ignore it." — Admiral Janeway, to her younger self (from "Endgame").

"I ended up stranded in the late 20th century. Have you ever been to that time frame? ... I don't recommend it." — Colonel Braxton, to Seven (from "Relativity").

"Dating is a poor means of interaction." — Seven, to the Doctor (from "Someone to Watch Over Me").

"Fortunately, I was able to create a chroniton-infused serum that brought you back into temporal alignment." — The Doctor, to Chakotay (from "Shattered").

"Like most time paradoxes, it's implausible, but not necessarily illogical." — Tuvok (from "Relativity").

"A soldier and a philosopher. Your intelligence file doesn't do you justice." — Janeway, to Chakotay (from "Shattered").

"I told Lieutenant Torres that your saxophone playing reminded me of a wounded targ. I should have put it more delicately!" — The Doctor to Harry Kim (from "Renaissance Man").

"I am familiar with human banter. Yours is crude and predictable." — Seven to Maxwell Burke (from "Equinox").

"Do you have any idea how inappropriate it is to follow your therapist on vacation?" — Deanna Troi, to Reg Barclay (from "Inside Man").

"It looks like a simple case of space sickness. ... It happens to everyone." — The Doctor, to Janeway (from "Relativity").

"Perhaps there is something to be said for assimilation after all." — Seven, on the merits of small talk and other human courtship rituals (from "Someone to Watch Over Me").

"You are an imposter. Admiral Janeway visits on Sunday. Today is Thursday. Logic dictates that you are not who you claim to be." — Tuvok, to Admiral Janeway (from "Endgame").

"As the Ferengi say, a good lie is easier to believe than the truth." — Janeway (from "Shattered").

"When you take me from the Borg, you're going to tell me that part of being human is learning to trust. Trust me, now." — Seven, to Janeway (from "Relativity").

"Did he ever stop being a doctor? ... I can't stop being a weapon." — The intelligent bomb, speaking through the Doctor's holomatrix, to Harry Kim (from "Warhead").

"My courage is insufficient." — Seven (from "Infinite Regress").

"Do what all good pragmatists do ... compromise." — The Borg Queen, to Admiral Janeway (from "Endgame").

"If you don't like the way I do things, I can leave you on the nearest habitable planet." — Janeway, to a Hirogen aboard Voyager (from "Flesh and Blood").

"Tom, get us out of here." — Janeway, to helmsman Tom Paris, in too many episodes to list!

"Computer, delete audience." — Tom Paris, referring to the other people in a holographic movie theater (from "Repression").

"Fun will now commence." — Seven, to a group of children she is teaching (from "Ashes to Ashes").

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Copyright 2009-2010 by Sasha Sark. Please don't reuse without permission.
"West African Dark Blue Cloth" image is displayed courtesy of the Richard F. Brush Art Gallery at St. Lawrence University.