DeadlockBy Michelle Erica Green
Posted at January 13, 2004 - 2:10 PM GMT
See Also: 'Deadlock' Episode Guide
Voyager passes through a nebula and immediately notices a power drain. The crew prepares to initiate proton bursts, but before they can do so, the ship is hit by proton bursts from an unknown source, which nearly destroy the vessel. Harry Kim dies when he's sucked into the vacuum of space while working on repairs, Ensign Wildman's new baby dies when Sickbay systems fail. The bridge is destroyed when the fire safeties fail.
Meanwhile, on a duplicate Voyager, Janeway sees a ghostly version of herself cross the bridge...and realizes that when the ship passed through the nebula, every atom of matter was duplicated - but not antimatter, so that both ships are drawing on the same warp core. She gets the attention of the damaged Voyager via a signal in engineering, and the two Janeways talk, agreeing to stop all proton bursts until they can work out a solution. When they realize that it won't be possible to transport the crew from the damaged Voyager onto the undamaged one, nor to exchange significant amounts of materials since that would throw off the balance of matter, the Janeway on the damaged Voyager decides to self-destruct her ship, before it drains all the antimatter from its undamaged counterpart.
Before she can do so, however, the ships are attacked by Vidiians, who fire on the undamaged Voyager but are unable to detect the damaged double. Hundreds of Vidiians cut a hole in the hull and board the ship, killing crewmembers and harvesting their organs. The captain of that vessel contacts her counterpart and announces that to protect the second Voyager, she's going to self-destruct her ship, and demands that the other Captain Janeway get her crew home. The duplicate Voyager and the Vidiian ship are destroyed in the self-destruct after sending their Harry Kim and baby Wildman to the damaged Voyager, which can effect repairs once the Vidiians and the antimatter drain are resolved.
This is one of those episodes that doesn't hold up too well under scientific scrutiny, but I loved it anyway. Two Janeways, at their best and working together...what a dream team! I simply adored the scene where the two Kathryns faced off over the fate of the damaged Voyager in Engineering, with the one insisting that the other had better not try to talk her out of it or she'd be thrown off the ship: "You know I'll do it."
I also liked the way the two B'Elannas were thinking in tandem. In identical shots in engineering, the two women are hunched over a console trying to make contact with one another - the major differences being the condition of the console and the battered crew. Few of the other crewmembers got much screen time, though there was a nice scene where Kes, who has accidentally crossed over from the damaged Voyager to the undamaged one, meets her double and is faced with the cries of a healthy baby after the one she was caring for died.
I am curious what happened to that dead baby when the duplicate Harry showed up with its double: did they have a funeral for baby Wildman even as they were celebrating its birth? And the possibility that Harry could look out a porthole and see his own body floating in space is freaky...though of course they all conceivably face that, depending on how thorough the destruction in a warp core breach is. I wondered how the remaining Voyager had any antimatter, since I would have thought the limited supply would have been annihilated when the duplicate matter was destroyed, but then what do I know about particle physics...
My two favorite moments in this episode were between Janeway and Chakotay, in two different universes: first, when he screamed at her to get off the bridge and she ignored him while trying to stop the bridge from exploding and taking the upper decks with it, and when they rose in tandem to welcome the Vidiians to the bridge, moments before they died together. Chakotay didn't say much in this episode, yet he came across very much as a supportive presence - reminded me of Spock in the Kirk-heavy original series episodes. Nice, especially considering that now we know Kate Mulgrew has as much chemistry with herself as with anyone else.
Michelle Erica Green reviews 'Enterprise' episodes for the Trek Nation, for which she is also a news writer. An archive of her work can be found at The Little Review.