First off, this blog and some of my art was featured over at The Fleet Workshop today! You should go check them out, especially if you're an artist or maker but even if you're just way into Trek and the awesome stuff people can do when they feel inspired by it.
Over the weekend I re-watched Scorion and today I re-watched The Gift and holy crap all the emotions happened.
Scorpion is the two-part season finale/premier wherein they first encounter Species 83439423085 and we find out The Borg are pretty much terrified of them. Voyager sort of stumbles into a way to freak them out and Janeway hatches a plan to team up with The Borg (I know!) so she can get Voyager safely through their space. Chakotay's all, "But my people have a saying..." and Janeway's like, "Nevermind I'm doing this." But then she gets konked on the noggin and leaves Chakotay in charge and he goes back to being all, "I'm telling you, my people weren't wrong about this..." But then Janeway wakes up and gives him the look and teams back up with The Borg and eventually they find out that (of course) The Borg started shit with Species 8324023049X2 and now they're basically just paying the price. Voyager hightails it out of there all broken up and with Seven still on board.
So far, I think this is the strongest Season Finale/Opener for Voyager. It's non-stop action and intrigue without losing the heart and I actually (even though I poked some fun at it) love Chakotay's story about the scorpion and the fox. I also love that he went against Janeway's wishes. They're both right and they're both wrong because there are no right answers in this situation and I like that they played this out.
Additionally, Kes' psychic powers are really turned up to eleven here which leads into The Gift. This is Kes' goodbye to Voyager. She suddenly finds her ability way more powerful than it had been and she can't really control it. She wants to leave to further explore her talents and the scene between Lien and Mulgrew never fails to make me all teary eyed.
I think it's easy (I'm sure I've done it on this blog) to bitch about how Kes was traded in for a shinier model in Seven. That they sent one pretty blonde actress back and got a new one. And that may be true. But today, as I re-watched The Gift, I thought more about Kes, Janeway, and Seven as a trifecta of characters with their own stories and their interwoven relationships. It's sad that Lien left. Obviously. And I've always missed her presence from the later seasons. But I also love what Janeway and Seven have. The relationship between a mother and daughter. It's set up clearly here. Seven comes along just as Janeway loses Kes. Janeway hopes to reach her and shows no fear in facing the former Borg drone. She's determined to have a relationship with Seven from the outset and the relationship she gets is beautiful and wonderful and awesome.