3 Against One On 'Human Error'By Amy
March 9, 2001 - 5:34 PM
There's another set of four 'Human Error' reviews out today, and once again opinion is divided between those who loved it and those who thought it was mediocre at best. However, there's a three to one split this time, arguing for the verdict that it was a good or even great episode.
Starting on the positive side of the fence, there's Julia Houston, Star Trek guide for About.com, whose only real concern with the episode is that they wont have time to continue the developments in it before the series ends.
This one's a complex episode far more worthy of Seven's characterization than "The Raven" and "Infinite Regress." The continuity is great as well. It makes perfect sense that Seven wants to explore the human version of herself that she glimpsed in Unimatrix Zero, and it makes perfect sense for her to do it this way.For the full run-down on Julia Houston's review, follow this link to About.com.
Seven's most interesting aspects have been the dichotomy between her overtly adult physical self and her child emotional self. She was assimilated before puberty, and is now having to learn things as an adult that we usually learn when we're about twelve. That's what makes her character similar to Data and the Doctor, that exploration of basic emotional needs with an adult's unanchored intellect.
Rob Adams (Quinn) of Section 31 is perhaps even more taken with the episode than Julia. Rating it a 9 out of 10, he found virtually nothing wrong with it. In fact, his biggest complaint was also that it came too late in the series.
But what made me happy about this episode was the fact that, despite the fact that this was an illusion, the development wasn't. This was actually Seven of Nine flirting, kissing, and practicing her social skills. Its a lot like "Someone..." Part 2. And this was very refreshing.Again, for the full review, follow this link.
I also liked the variety of small things in the episode. Seven in a Starfleet uniform (at least she's thinking about it), Doc's futuristic version of "Rock-a-bye Baby" and Seven's reaction to the song, Icheb's continuing academy studies, the differences between real and holo-Chakotay, and of course, the hint of jealousy I picked up from Doc. It was all very well done.
- Meanwhile, Jason Bates of IGN Sci-Fi was also impressed with the episode, giving it a high rating of 4/5.
Normally when we get a "Seven Learns About Being Human" episode, we're on the outside looking in, watching as Janeway lectures her on what humans are supposed to do and laughing as Seven takes the advice too literally, often to robotic extremes. Nothing wrong with that, it was fun, but it was getting a little old.Bate's full review can be found by clicking here.
So here that storyline's shaken up, and we're taken inside her head (well almost, there's no voiceover, no internal monologue) and shown just how far she's come along in becoming human and how deep her aspirations in this direction really are, while at the same time we see how far away from realizing that goal she really is and likely always will be.
- Finally, Jacqueline Bundy of The Trekker Newsletter was the lone dissident voice today, though she didn't carry her dislike to the extreme of Michelle Erica Green yesterday, she found it to be rather mediocre all around.
I'm sure this episode of Voyager, "Human Error" pleased a lot of fans. But I was not one of them. It's been a while since Voyager did a story centered around Seven's continued growth toward her humanity. And yes, I know, the writers are exploring the human condition when they do a story about Seven's journey from Borg drone to human being. I can't help it, it hasn't been long enough for me.To find out more about what Jacqueline thought about the episode, and why she rated it a 6/10, click here!
With the teleplay by Brannon Braga and Andrew Bormanis, from a story by Bormanis and Kenneth Biller, some of the scenes fell flat. The above noted scene between Seven and B'Elanna, and the dressing down of Seven by Janeway especially. I had the feeling that the holodeck portion of the story got a lot more attention when writing this episode than the real time portion. And the difference was obvious. Manu Intiraymi did his usual good job with Icheb. His character was well used in this episode. If you are a big Chakotay fan, or of course a devotee of Seven of Nine, this episode is sure to please. Not the best this season has had to offer, but then again not the worst either. I would give this episode a 6 out of 10.
- In other episode review news, AntonyF over at Fandom.com's Star Trek Central has a review of 'Repentance' from early February. He rated it 7/10, calling it "a nice episode, making overall enjoyable watching."