Marill Finishes Season One
I didn't think I'd make it to the end. I started this for a few reasons; I wanted to make sure the rest of the Reboot of this season included absolutely everything to avoid retcons in future seasons. And I thought it would be fun to critique my old work fairly for once, instead of shouting "Hunters sucks" randomly now and then, give it a fair chance you know. I like reading silly reviews of terrible fiction done in this style. FV is not well known enough or at all to get them and hey, as stated on the main page, a lot of this crap felt like somebody else wrote them. Not to say I'm a good writer now, I'm not, but I'd be extremely insecure and ignorant to not admit I'm better at it than I used to be. God, even that was hard to type.
Furthermore when I'm sitting in my office with no work to do since everything I do has to be done before 10am and that's 2 hours out of 6/8 into my shift, and I'm not in a writing/creative mood (or I am but not feeling confident about it), reading through my old crap and criticing it passes the time. At least in a way that's kinda useful and not crossing the line (internet abuse or playing Civilization 2/Roller Coaster Tycoon on the laptop for the 1000th time. Though Civilization 2 abuse is a thing of a past now, RIP my XP laptop, FU 64bit). I spent too many years of this job sitting for 4-6 hours doing sod all, going silently madder. There's only so many Sudoko and Logic puzzles you can do in a day before your brain melts.
So yeah not that big a surprise I made it to the end and am considering reading Season Two. I didn't want to because the episodes are longer and there's Timeless/Muse/Aggressions Part 2 tier stuff in there like The Atamit and Return of Third Voyager, not to mention the controversial probably only to me nowadays Dimension Jump. I dunno how I'd do the latter without explaining a few things I shouldn't, but never mind, I'll cross that bridge if I ever build it.
Re-Reading Season One has been a little enlightening, sometimes fun and at times absolutely horrifying. Test of Time tested my ability to not smash my fist against a screen and will to live, made me actually ill for a few days (I wish I was exaggerating). Aggressions Part 2 took Hunters place as the Worst Episode Ever with no trouble at all, though I'm sure if I gave World Domination a chance it would tie at least. I rediscovered or just discovered some of my teenaged crimes like the racist crap of Upendi, "Damien's" treatment and the less we speak of Timeless the better. BUT I've also found some good hidden within this season. James wasn't as bad as remembered; still random and not entirely figured out but he wasn't the worst character (Jessie was), he even got some pre-Season Two's "plottwist" development which is nice as I didn't remember anything outside of Holo Q. I still liked reading Worse Case and Conspiracy.
Yes it's not all as bad as I like to make out. I have to be honest I think B4FV Season One or Season Three will be worse than Season One, though I had a sneaking suspicion before I started this. At least Season One has the excuse of me being completely new to writing complete stories, especially ones being told in a long series arc. I was young, 15 for the majority of it and you can tell that I was drunk on the idea that my work was out there and people were reading it. Got to my ickle head I think. Nowadays I think oh god more people probably read Fifth Voyager in its Season One days than today, and after what I've just finished reading that's hide under the desk embarrassing.
As of end of Thrown Key Part 1 stats
Enough blabbing for the time being, let's check out the counters to see what stuff was actually overdone to hell and what was just my imagination. Now some counts will be amended like Jessie's Sin Points as I started them later on a whim, but not just yet. I'd have to show a before and after, go over them so you know I'm not fiddling with the numbers. Explanations like why Jessie's Sin Points may have gone from 24 to 30 may be because of Timeless, which actually sounds pretty lax considering but you get the idea. Let's take a look.
Exclaimed Count: 155
Muttered Count: 850
Motto Count: 20
Sexist Crap Count: 33
Jessie's Sin Points: 18
Morgan the Sue Count: 8
Seven Dies Count: 5
James Kill Count: 2
The Exclaimed count isn't that surprising, and I should've known it'd be a waste to keep track of them. Sometime in 2004/2005 I decided to do a mini reboot of the season; editing the problem scenes that I remembered and find/replacing exclaimed with other words like shouted, yelled and very likely muttered. Just think though, that number above is quite excessive if you remember how short most of the season is AND that this is the number after it was fixed. It was a lot worse.
Muttered, well that one was a little surprise. I figured it was an abused word early on because I only caught myself doing it in recent years. If only I discovered just abuse sooner. Yeah this is bad and if I didn't have an actual reboot now it'd be sorted out like exclaimed was. Now, nope it's permanent. I am happy though I didn't reach the big four digits there. Halfway through I feared it would happen.
Motto's could've been worse but it's still not great either. You have 29 episodes and 20 mottos, yes at least two episodes have 2 of the things but that still means 62% of Season One commits this crime. Not one is really original or funny. Painful.
Now this got to a slow start. The Sexist Crap Counter, which started as against my own gender was inspired by my memories of the Upendi "cat fight". At first I expected a high number like this, then I went for a few episodes without any and I started to think it was only Upendi that made me think my work had a lot of SLUT/WHORE shouting in it. I started to notice far more, I wanna say subtle examples that racked up the points instead. I was right about one thing, the number did start to speed up when Morgan joined the cast but I can't blame it on the anti-Seven because of C/7 effect.
At the beginning of the project I was concerrned about reading old school James. Since I'm really proud of what I've done to him, he's one of my favourites up there with Morgan. Don't get me wrong, I love all of my mains a lot. Way off topic... So yeah, I pictured wincing at everything he said or did. The thing is, Jessie was the worst of the bunch for me. I'm sorry, I love ya Jessie (now) but good god, what a bitch Season One Jess is. Jessie's Sin counter was the only one I never planned in advance, even James' Kills was going to happen eventually (Season Two ahem), so what else can I say that I have already.
A one I was surprised hadn't really kicked off was Morgan the Sue. I figured Season One was the worst for this, while Season Two and Three continue the trend until I start to share the wealth with James in Season Four. Yes yes I know James gets a lot of scenes from the very beginning, but if you haven't noticed already he's treated like crap. Even when he's finally upgraded to Slayer he's told he's rubbish at it and gets humiliated plenty of times, even his evil moments are lacklustre. He's labelled as weak and more of a burden on the crew, it's only in Season Four he's treated better... ironically. Even when you could argue he's the new Sue of the series, you may lose the argument to me and hopefully others since he's so deeply flawed he makes me look like a perfect saint lol
Morgan though I can't ignore all the obvious clues, however I was mistaken that they were rich in abundance in Season One. Yeah they're there, but compared to the other new characters she's not that much more of a Sue than them. Oh she's in every episode, so is James, Jessie and Craig. The count's surprisingly low, and I know Season Two is DEFINITELY where the numbers will rise fast.
Seven Dies has not yet truly kicked off, but that I wasn't quite sure about when I started it. I should've remembered Dark Frontier, the second off last episode written for Season One, started this running gag. To be fair though I didn't know it was C/7 that truly made me bring my Seven hatred into the series, as at first I treated her as anyone else in the series. In fact before then Tom and Tuvok were treated worse. Tom and Tuvok still are treated worse. I'm afraid Seven Dies counter will not start racking up Muttered numbers until Season Two kicks off.
James' Kill Count I wasn't expecting until Season Two, so yeah last minute entry here. I did remember his Victreebell killing Damien, but I didn't count it because I remembered that thing liked to glomp people's heads, including his. I didn't think he himself did anything, but to my surprise he ordered it to kill him. The most shocking of all was Pearla in Fear. I figured it was only fair I started racking up something of his, Jessie had her sins and Morgan had her sues. He still lost but lets see who's the loser next season. Okay I still think he'll lose since Morgan has too many sue moments and Jessie should start to improve, but hey!
Early Review Stats
As mentioned earlier, Jessie's Sins and I guess James' Kills were last minute on a whim decisions. Though the latter was because I didn't expect it in Season One. I don't think Seven dies in earlier episodes, I figured Dark Frontier was where it all started and that's when I decided to keep count. Basically it's only fair that if I'm doing a full season I count the whole season, so I've skimmed the earlier reviews for anything that can add to them. To not bloat this page too much (more) unfortunately I'll be quoting the line and obviously mention which episode it is (with the link) without any context and score it accordingly. Then once I'm done there will be a final tally. Hurray.
"Yeah good idea, we could play Double Trouble," Jessie said. "Too bad we don't have a talking cat."
Jessie's Sin Points: +1
What? She started this stupid play Pokémon(/Steps/Aqua) music craze off, and for that punishment is needed. I would also berate her for wanting a cat but James' phobia isn't a thing until the prequels, and that's a good year or so off from when this was written. Also Hunters was their only guest stars debut episode, at least for the majority of it.
"No of course not," Jessie said. Chakotay and Tuvok began scanning around the room. A support beam collapsed outside the room but it still made a large bang. She jumped again and she hid behind James.
"That sounds like a ghost to me," Jessie said, she grabbed onto James' arm. Chakotay rolled his eyes.
Same scene, within a few lines of each other.
Jessie's Sin Points: +1
Sure she's new and sure she's Team Rocket Jessie in this scene, but despite the cuteness of early J/J shipping it's hard to stomach Jessie cowering behind James in any season. Unless it's because of a rabbit. Jessie's not his damsel in distress, and James shows many times that he's more than happy with that arrangement. Yes I know I ended up keeping the scenes in the Reboot. But Jessie's not meant to be herself in it, as the point of the drug was meant to make her irrational so Kellin's story made her look more sympathetic. The original though I know for a fact the coward scenes were her Team Rocket fear hug influences and nothing story related, other than the original deleted scene of the chat about James' dad doing some haunting abuse.
Jessie's violent scenes will not be counted. The Kellin flashback was definitely meant to be slightly fabricated to make Kellin's actions look like self defence, my only proof which probably only I'd believe is I doubt I'd give Jessie a love confession in her second episode and not do a repeat of it until Season Two if it was meant to be legit. Jessie beating Tom viciously is open for debate. I really would like to believe that was also her illness/drug influenced as James assumed, it's not stated as fact though. Since I'm not sure I don't think it's fair to mark it down.
"It seems a bit unbelievable, I mean, James with a girlfriend. He's avoided girls who've asked him out since junior school," Jessie laughed.
Jessie's Sin Points: +1
This is definitely not drug influenced either. Just S1 Jessie being a bitch and bad friend.
"What about my mother!" Kiara yelled.
"Oh I'm sorry you lost your bloody mother! I care about the crew too I was just saying that I've lost my makeup too!" Jessie yelled.
Jessie's Sin Points: +5
Do I really need to explain this?
And no Seven Dies shouldn't count here what with Timeless being an all a dream episode. Even when/if it wasn't in the olden days it was still an AU so doesn't count. I hate Seven, trust me if it were a legit I'd count it.
"How's your space sickness, Crewman?" he asked.
"I think it's gone, I totally forgot about it," Jessie replied.
Jessie's Sin Points: -1
Minor example of Jessie caring so much about James she forgets about her own well being.
"We were, we needed to be nasty to Tom at least once in this episode. Oh well, see you later," Jessie said.
Jessie's Sin Points: +1
There's plenty of examples in later episodes of Tom being deserving of a beating, and since this was written around that same time it's jarring and quite annoying that Jessie has to fourth wall quota excuse this. A few seconds thought could've cooked up an actual reason, but no make Jessie (and James) a bully. Super.
"My beautiful hair, it's gone!" Jessie exclaimed. "And look at my face, it's a horrible dull grey and they put this horrible crap on it!"
Jessie's Sin Points: +1
Yes Jessie still likes her hair to be perfect, wouldn't be seen leaving her quarters in a tracksuit and makeupless but it's an insecurity thing. She really thinks she's weird looking and ugly, not helped by the fact that she hit puberty early somewhere between 8-10, years before all the other girls. She slapped on makeup, dressed up nicely and perfected her hair to hide those issues and not get attention, not realising it had the opposite effect. By the time she realises this it's too late, it's an addiction. By S2 she feels a bit more comfortable in her own skin, which is sadly written as a byproduct of her getting together with James, and gives up the make up. Clothes and hair though stay with her, the former becoming more of a hobby than an addiction.
It's Team Rocket Jessie talking here, I'm afraid. However as much as I'd like to bitch about it, it was the inspiration for what I've written above. Without it Jessie would've probably done what I did with similar bullying, nothing but learn to hate cameras and mirrors. Personally I prefer Jessie's way of dealing. Still, this vain overreaction is a bit/lot much and very much a sin. Reboot Collective proves it was not necessary.
"But it spoils my looks. Who would want to go out with girl who has assimilation tubules on her hand?" Jessie asked angrily
Jessie's Sin Points: +5
This is so un Jessie-like it's in a completely different ballpark to the first Collective Instinct sin. Jessie never complains about not having a date, doesn't gripe about being single, never decides to wear something because she thinks the men will leer, is very much a naive prude at times, is easily embarrassed and usually doesn't even notice when someone does hit on her. I'm trying to remember if she ever checks herself over or decides on an outfit JUST for James' benefit. I can't. I can only remember one scene where she asks him his opinion and he's like I don't care, dress how you want, you look great regardless. But then again I could be misremembering the trigger for that line, as she's made a few comments that he knows as much about fashion as I do about grammar (ohsnap!).
James ran over to Jessie who had hurt her back. He helped her up. The creatures were paralyzed from the glare. One creature ran up to James and Jessie. "Oh get lost!" he yelled, he pushed it off the side. No a car didn't come, a lorry did instead.
James Kill Count: 1
Though it's debatable if these purple things are real beings and not something HoloQ conjured up. Also this is more manslaughter than murder, right?? Meh
Jessie becoming a damsel in Holo Q wasn't really her, no use sinning her for bird creatures flying into her face and grabbing her, zombie dinos choosing her to eat, purple guys shoving her into a wall etc... The issue with this was it was only written in for James to save her (and because most happened in the Power Rangers film too). If anything I should get the sins, not her. The Sexist Counter suited this crap better.
Jessie ran over to James and she gave him a hug. She quickly pushed him away, glaring at him.
Jessie's Sin Points: -1
She does this, A LOT. It's a dynamic about these two I like. Jessie would prefer to suffer than see James get hurt (physically or otherwise) or killed to save her from it. She's grateful though when he does and does love the heroic side of him, it's quite a conflict. This brief line shows this in a nutshell.
She put her hand on his face and she kissed his cheek. Unknown to her Tom had came back into the room. "Oooh!" Tom said. The pair turned to face him, both were red. James was embarrassed and Jessie was angry.
There's a few bits of this I could've chosen and it'd still look contextless without the full scene, this is the best one though.
Jessie's Sin Points: -1
All throughout, until much later seasons anyway, Jessie struggles with her issues revolving around James and their friendship. Test of Time barely showed the bullying they received for being friends despite their opposite genders (Reboot Test of Time fixes that), and I'm reluctant to say it as it looks "I TOLD YA SO" their chemistry, James' overprotectiveness, and their comfortableness around one another were factors too. James' "I hate men they're all the same" only really contributed to the boys calling him gay, yes that makes perfect sense lol (I'd explain but it doesn't apply here as I said. Although a lot of gay remarks were because James didn't date her, killing their stereotypical expectations).
Jessie values her friendship with James greatly, it's really frustrating and insulting when people tease her with "you guys should totally get into bed already" as it devalues their friendship. "Your friendship, it's meaningless, you're gonna end up making out anyway so get it over with." It doesn't help there's various hints throughout that Jessie does have feelings for him, proving everyone right. She not only doesn't want to lose him if they break up messily, or he turns her down making everything awkward, she's annoyed with herself for having those feelings. A lot of the time she goes into super denial mode so people don't find that out. Like here she's fine until Tom catches her in the act, once the anger passes she's left with a confused James, who also has deep routed issues but not the same ones she does.
Yeah I thought for years that her and James' denial in earlier seasons were juvenile and silly, but I've seen only one or two like that, the rest have been like Holo Q. I think it's in character and works quite well. James has had more stupid examples, though they're all either Unforgettable or revolving around women that aren't Jessie.
She crashed into James and Craig, they all fell over. "James, do something!" she screamed.
"Aaagggghhhh! I can't live anymore, I need makeup!" Jessie screamed.
Jessie ran over to Harry and she started strangling him. "It's all your fault I haven't got any make up! If you had just stayed here on your own with your boyfriend, Tom, I would be still on Voyager!" she screeched.
Jessie ran towards them, Craig and James were trying to catch her. Jessie grabbed Jacqueline. "Do you have any make up! I haven't had make up for months! I feel like I'm going to die!" Jessie exclaimed.
"Fine, I'll just go and jump off a cliff, it'll get everything over with," Jessie moaned. Craig and James held her back as she tried to head for a cliff edge.
"I'm the most beautiful member of the crew," Jessie said.
Jessie's Sin Points: +6
Demon started the sins so its only fitting that I show exactly why this is a thing with 6 different quotes. James HALP ME bulls$$$, I can't live without fake crap on my face, hey I'm gonna strangle someone for this, then roughly shake a visitor who could help me, nope suicide is the only answer (only being a drama queen though!), and oh my god the vanity. Yeah she shoves Tuvok over later but that's been marked already.
Sooooooo, let's see the subtotal is before I add it to the main one.
Jessie's Sin Points: +18
James Kill Count: 1
Final Season One Stats
Exclaimed Count: 155
Muttered Count: 850
Motto Count: 20
Sexist Crap Count: 33
Jessie's Sin Points: 36
Morgan the Sue Count: 8
Seven Dies Count: 5
James Kill Count: 3
The Season One Scoreboard
On the 10th and 20th reviews I did a ranking of the episodes I'd read so far, based on the scores I gave them. HOWEVER this one will be slightly different. I don't think I started the scoring system properly until Once Upon A Time (though Unforgettable looks to be scored similarly, it's just not formatted to make that easy for me to figure out), Test of Time excluded since it was written around Hunters time. Also I wasn't entirely sure about Worse Case Scenario's score what with its far too many positives ruining the scoring system made for a negative majority.
It's only fair that every episode is scored the same way. I'll quickly skim through the old reviews and score like I did with the others.
Like I was taught in school and was told I was still not doing enough of, I'll show my working out. Click here to skip all that and get straight to the ranking. All episodes "should" start with 10 points FYI, Worse Case Scenario 2 is a whole other story. 10 points is perfect, negative remarks each take a point off, postives bring them back. Apart from the ep I mentioned, this scoring system worked for Season One.
-7 +3 = 6/10
Comments: I was close, not bad.
-21 +2 = 0/10 (or -9/10 but that makes no sense)
Comments: HAHAHA, did you expect anything less... or technically more? You funny.
Illness: -7 +4 = 7/10
Comments: holy moly, Mental Illness did the lists of positives and negatives like later episodes did so re-scoring this was easy. Still to be fair I scored it like the others here and came up with the same score. Who am I to argue?
of Hell: -13 +2 = 0/10 (or -1/10)
Comments: Yeah, not surprised at another minus. Still not as bad as Aggressions 2.
-14 +6 = 2/10
Comments: This episode did also have a positive/negative list too but there's a lot missing here, the score would've been 10/10 if I didn't skim the review. Yeah.
-8 +3 = 5/10
Comments: Demoted by 2 points
Comments first: I kept losing track of my complaints. Sometimes I will summarise one complaint that's prevelant throughout an episode, like the sleepover party or how James' abuse is handled by everyone. This keeping score thing I'm doing here could have me counting things twice which I don't do in later reviews, so not very fair. I started again while keeping notes.
+1 for quite funny opening
-1 for the sleepover in general
-1 for the excessive what people are wearing all throughout the episode
-1 Craig is very creepy in this
+1 James is very James-like in his response to this
-1 Jessie isn't very Jessie-like in her response to this at first
-1 James has his own room, the sleepover is in Jessie's room, Jessie says the sleepover is girls only, but when she lets him into their quarters he has to join in the sleepover, why?
+1 continuity from episodes that hadn't been written yet, it's nice to see some even minor things were planned in advance.
-1 James dressing as Team Rocket James, the music inspiring him and Jessie to do the motto (thankfully interrupted by the writers, never thought I'd say that!), all of this leads to the episode's biggest sin below
-2 The reason James and Jessie are picked on as kids and why Tom is meant to pester them is simply they're a man and woman who are life long apparently platonic best friends. As they're both straight there should be something, a one sided crush at some point, friendship ruining by friendzone accusations/bulls$$$, eventually getting together, they're already ex's etc.
It doesn't matter that in the past/future episodes if any of these are true, it's the generalisation that this is expected of them that especially Jessie has issues with. It's also boosted by the fact Jessie does have feelings for James, for which she is ashamed of because she didn't want to fit into the stereotype/generalisation of boys and girls can't be friends. It also stands to reason she doesn't want to lose him either, something that could happen if she did anything about her feelings.
If you were to describe Season One Jessie, you'd call her vain and very quick to temper/defensive over James. Yet Test of Time (and a few others) retcons this with making it about their names I assume to make it more funny than serious, BUT leaves the original material hinting to the relationship explanation still in there (the description about the gender divide in the class, Jessie's fight with the girl at the end of Part 1, the arranged marriage to name a few). Future episodes abuse this, yes Demon I believe started this stupid joke but Test of Time set the example and for this it deserves all the scorn and extra point I give it. Moving on.
-1 for the Tom attack, it's way too OTT. It's made worse by the above point.
-1 It's a bigger deal than it looks, James' comment about "holding her back" after he did no such thing in the scene that triggered it, and even helped her attack Tom to kick off the flashback scenes.
+1 There are hints to James' later characterisation or present if you count Holo Q; his overprotectiveness of Jessie, that until she could do it herself he stuck up for her when they were kids.
+1 flashback scenes start out quite well. There's some half decent descriptions, the pair aren't carictures and act like kids, it mostly does what it's supposed to (if you ignore the Jesse James parts).
-1 The abuse revelation is done poorly. The teacher makes some ridiculously stupid decisions regarding this, not taking him to the hospital (school nurse instead what?), doesn't call any kind of security/police right away, doesn't stop Alison and encourages the worst idea ever of James going home with a note to his mum, then fleeing to a house filled with little girls and a woman who's afraid of men. Don't get me started on the jumping straight into oh and his dad's dead scene. Sure the Reboot does this, but it's because the original's poorly done version didn't allow much flexibility what with future episodes mentioning this backstory. At least it says he's arrested, tried and got away with it before getting a shuttle in the face. Original misses a few steps, leaving you guessing.
+1 The episode does have the stones to bring up James' abuse by both his father and Jill. True Demon and The Fight mentioned it, but this episode certainly goes there.
-1 The Jill stuff is badly meshed with the dad reveal so it looks like its only there to be a mislead (so you'd think James' injuries were her), and the dad stuff makes it seem like not a big deal and is quickly forgotten about. There is no resolution, nothing. It's a big deal in James' characterisation, his insecurities with flirty women is presented all throughout the season, it should've been done.
-1 Forkknife while a hilarious reoccuring gag now, the episode's original mistake turned into a joke is so bland and unfunny.
-1 THE HEADMASTER VOLUNTEERS TO HELP A GIRL RUN AWAY SCENES
-1 The arranged marriage stuff was clearly written when I had lost the plot already, in more ways than one, and just wanted to speed type till the end. Rushed and badly done.
+1 The twister finale isn't all bad, it's funny until it starts to drag on needlessly.
Yikes that was longer than I expected
Results: -15 +7 = 2/10
Case Scenario 2
Comments First: This episode's a problem because of the fact it had more positives than negatives giving it a score of something like 15/10. Even my season favourite Voyager Conspiracy had more things wrong than good, but still got a 9. I decided to mark Worse Case differently, opting to take 2 points off 10 because of the only 2 biggish negative remarks. Then I thought it seemed very unfair that Conspiracy was marked higher than an episode that broke the score system I use. Since I couldn't overlook just 1 issue with Worse, I changed it to a 9 as well, creating the tie.
Today it still doesn't seem fair what with Year of Hell (and likely Aggressions Part 2) being narrowed up to a 0 despite falling into the minuses. Shouldn't the opposite be true for Worse? It got more than a 10/10 so shouldn't it be simply 10/10? I have issues with that, probably because I'm a negative and insecure person. Whereas I'm perfectly ok labelling a Season One entry as so horrible it deserves no points, I can't call any episode perfect. Worse Case clearly is the closest there is to one. Is it better than Voyager Conspiracy or is it simply a matter of comparing a smaller, harmless, fun episode to an original episode parody which does have some important character stuff going on in the foreground (Morgan/Seven's rivalry, Seven's downfall).
Once you start making distinctions like that the whole scoring system falls apart. Do I give Worse Case its perfect 10 to avoid having to judge the rest of Season One similarly. For example can you really lump Mental Illness and Dark Frontier together, one's a late episode entry two parter knee deep in character development mostly written well and the other's a second entry mini episode that's just for fun. Honestly, they're in different leagues and I was uncomfortable placing Mental Illness into that new 7/10 position because of that. However I've wasted so much time on these scores before I even started this page, it seems stupid to change the whole score system now.
That settles it. Worse Case Scenario 2 should follow the same rules as any other episode does, and so I've once more changed the score.
Comments: My issue with Upendi lay solely on the opening to Part 2, with Jessie and Morgan's slut match that almost ended up in sharp objects, which by the way was stopped because men are always stronger than women even when one of the women/girls is already an ex-Borg AND "secretly" has super Human strength by default anyway. gag
Craig being able to hold Morgan back when she's always been stronger than Craig, it's always been canon even IF the Slayer=strong thing hadn't been decided then. If the Slayer stuff had been decided then, it's still insulting because James is remembered, but Morgan is not to suit the male>female agenda. I dunno why, I'm a girl. Season Two, James and Morgan are on equal ground but Morgan is pushed as better. Jessie's described as being stronger than some men in the series, so seriously WTF was this about!?
I gave the scene 4 negative points instead of 1 because of its issues. The strength issue was already seperated from it as it should've been. I marked it down the further 3 points because the scene is setup horribly with Jessie having to be remarkably stupid in the first place, it looks forced. Jessie then is forced into being a bitch, blaming everyone else and thus starting the fight. You could say those two issues are one and the same, this fight had to happen but HOW it happened wasn't figured out and so it was bodged to be this, the problems are one and the same. That ups the score to a 4/10.
Jessie then threatens violence and actually does seem to go for an object that would kill/maim a 16 year old girl. Jessie's a twenty something, 26?? year old. If she were another 16 year old I wouldn't be as harsh, teens can be overdramatic. Jessie should know better though. The other argument for the extra points was the slut comments. Considering the argument was about how incompetant Jessie was and her inability to admit that, how does her being an idiot equal her being a "whore"? Yes yes 16 year old girl says this, but Jessie fights fire with fire.
summing up or rather re-scoring the scene, with the knowledge that
the James and Craig holding the women back has already been scored.
-1 for the forced way the argument started, Jessie had to be insanely stupid and arrogant to the point of ITWASN'T ME IT WAS HER for this to happen
-1 Morgan goes straight for the throat, calling her a slut instead of saying instead "you're useless, get back to your games you stupid idiot". Which would go with the first point as it's also very forced, but Jessie keeps this going with a NO U. Also them arguing over who's the biggest whore isn't the point of the argument, the first complaint was all about getting them into the argument.
-1 16 year old girl calms down and maturely (for her age anyway) goes back to the task at hand, while 26 year old Jessie goes bats$$$, has to still be held back or she'll straight up murder her. Jessie in S1 maybe a psychopath but this is crossing more than one line and should be marked accordingly. It probably still would've happened if negative 1 & 2 were fixed, Morgan was always meant to bring up her and James so yeah...
So that's that. Upendi now has a score of 4/10
Yeah um, lets go with the assumption there's no good in this. It'll be 0/10 easily, but I've got other reasons for doing this and you'll see why soon enough. For now I'm going to count all the crap I can see from skimming it. No quotes or comments. Forgive me, for I have already sinned.
Anything redeeming: Does Marill dying temporarily count?
Other comments: NOOOOO THEY KILLED THINGYMAJIG, yes that earned a point god damn it.
As expected I saw nothing good. As also expected World Domination has a score of 0/10
Phew! Let's take a look then at the results now
1st: Worse Case Scenario 2 (10/10)
2nd: The Voyager Conspiracy (9/10)
3rd: Mental Illness, Once Upon A Time, Collective Instinct, and Dark Frontier (7/10)
4th: Aggressions Part 1, Timeline, Fugitives, and Fear (6/10)
5th: Unforgettable and Spirits (5/10)
6th: The Fight, Too Q, Upendi, and Voyager's Drinking Game (4/10)
7th: Mirror Universes, Fair Haven 2, Prepare For Trouble, and VTV Live (3/10)
8th: Hunters, Test of Time, Holo Q, Demon², and Thrown Key Part 1 (2/10)
9th: Timeless (1/10)
10th: Aggressions Part 2, Year of Hell, Muse, and World Domination (0/10)
That's a heck a lot of ties. 10 places for a 29 episode long season? Something must be done.
An Alternate Scoreboard
While the "10 places for 29 episodes"/ties complaint is a subjective one, you've got to admit the "10 - negative points + positives = ?? out of 10" isn't a workable scoring system. Worse Case Scenario and the minuses of the season are proof enough. It's also a strange way to mark, anything. Season Two onwards can't be scored like this. It's not fair to have Season One ranked differently to the others, so why not experiment with a new scoring system using Season One? That way it can be compared to the others. I can have the separate lists for each season and an overall series tally... then again the thought of Re-Reading Season Five makes my fingers hurt. Re-Read Season One reviews can take a few days, so yeah, YIKES! But anyway, back to Season One.
I need a way to score and rank these using what I already have. There's really only way I can think of;
the Pros and Cons
Instead of ten out of tens, lets do this right. PERCENTAGES;
(100 / total number of points good or bad) x positive points = %
#01 Worse Case Scenario 2: 69%
#02 The Voyager Conspiracy: 47%
#03 Dark Frontier: 42%
#04 Once Upon A Time, Collective Instinct, Fugitives: 40%
#05 Fear: 38%
#06 Mental Illness: 37%
#07 Timeline: 36%
#08 Holo Q, Spirits and Prepare For Trouble: 33%
#09 Test of Time and VTV Live: 32%
#10 The Fight and Upendi: 31%
#11 Aggressions Part 1 and Hunters: 30%
#12 Demon²: 28%
#13 Unforgettable and Fair Haven 2: 27%
#14 Too Q and Thrown Key Part 1: 25%
#15 Mirror Universes and Voyager's Drinking Game: 23%
#16 Timeless: 20%
#17 Muse: 14%
#18 Year of Hell: 13%
#19 Aggressions Part 2: 9%
#20 World Domination: 0%
Hmm. I agree with some of it but strongly disagree on other parts.
Agreeable: Dark Frontier being third, all of fourth place, Hunters not being as low as it was in the other list (imagine that!). The bottom five, Mirror Universes' position.
Disagreeable: Test of Time being 9th, yeah it had some good in it but with how painful the negatives are it doesn't deserve to be so high up (although that's the issue with the +1 system, I only score more than 1 if it's exceptionally bad. Yes I did it right for Test, but most episodes I didn't). Hunters being better than Unforgettable, what? I'm okay with the other episodes it beats though. I'm not so sure about Holo Q and Prepare For Trouble being tied that high up, both are pretty terrible.
So yeah this way is hit and miss. It's still better than the first rankings though. When I mark Season Two episodes I must be a bit more consistent with my points. If I really love something instead of like, +2, and the opposite for hatred. It might make the list a little more accurate.
Brief Final Thoughts on each episode
Aggressions Part 1 - Pretty bland but followed its plot. Introduced Craig well enough, had a couple of funny moments. It copied Coda far, far too much. Actually Coda and Q and the Grey's scenes were pointless and had little to do with the storyline, especially with the latter's point of being there not being evident until mid Season Two.
Aggressions Part 2 - What the hell was I smoking/drinking/swallowing? A huge whiplash after Part 1, it feels like a completely different episode. I refuse to class the parts as the same entity because the content backs me up. I can't be the only one who can see it.
Mental Illness - Harmless episode only there to give newcomer Craig a little time to shine. Unfortunately the introduction of the writers steals his thunder. Could've been better but at the same time didn't really have the potential to be a great.
Year of Hell - Adds nothing original to Year of Hell or Pikachu Revolts, the Pokémon episode it quotes. It's the Writers Show, Year of Hell takes a temporary backseat and goes on while the readers are forced to see the Pokémon episode. Absolute rubbish with no redeeming qualities.
Hunters - incorrectly labelled as the worst episode ever. It is bad with its plot going off the rails, distracted by the James and Jessie creation. However it has some good bits, explores Craig's past a bit, James and Jessie's introduction isn't as bad as I thought and some is in character, even the bobbles bit wasn't wholy terrible. Still deserves the shoutouts it gets, just not in favour of Aggressions 2 and Year of Hell.
Unforgettable: Actually pretty clever story behind it, IMO a refreshing alternate version of an original episode. Its potential is squandered though. James' character, even though new is still monstrously OOC. Somethings aren't explained but assumed. Could be better if given more time, as evidenced by its reboot.
Once Upon A Time: First half is almost perfect for a Season One entry. Good opening, the bridge scene made me laugh, the Harry powermad stuff was good at first but grew pretty stale near the end. It's ruined by Enterprise cameos and the writer appearance where they threaten kids for no reason. Rushed and misses a few important points.
Timeless: HOLY CRAP. This crapfest has it all; copied original scenes with different characters saying same things, adult Kiara crushing on an underaged boy, J/J's kid only being born to give her a love interest, MY MAKE UP STFU ABOUT YOUR DEAD MUM. Need I say more?
The Fight: Started out well enough. Shows some promise by extending Chaotic Space's influence to the new cast, who wouldn't have been on the ship in the original series. Only it gives it up to rush to the ending. James' part makes no sense.
Mirror Universes: FANFIC DIMENSIONS
Worse Case Scenario 2: Good idea for an episode and a sequel to an original episode, once the program gets going its a good laugh. Harmlessly short episode. Tom deserves his abuse, Kiara acts like a kid, James gets something revealed about him. Very little bad to say about it.
Collective Instinct: Has an intruiging and quite a daring premise which is buried, kinda on purpose and at the same time accidentally. On purpose so the crew don't find out, yet, and accidentally as it expects the reader to notice clues that aren't there. Foreshadowing for Timeline and James' part in the series. Could've been so much better.
Holo Q: Another episode that has a good idea at its core but ruins itself by turning into a rip off quote fest of Power Rangers the Movie. Pokémon battles are everywhere. Some good stuff in there, with James' character development, some shippy moments.
Demon: For once the writers sideplot is better than the main storyline, and neither really clash or distract from each other. The main plot is though taken over by Vicky crushing on James, and Jessie's blabbing of his darkest secrets he would never even tell her. Goodlord.
Timeline: Morgan's first episode could've gone much better. It's confusing, tries too hard to be convoluted when it's doing fine on its own, boring in places. Morgan herself has none of her personality. Shame since it's an important one.
Spirits: Good concept but not explained, as usual, rushed to the finale, as usual. The opening expositionathon is atrocious and should be deleted since little to none of it is canon today. At least Tani's jealousy with Jessie is used well. Morgan's fake bravery with dead bodies backfiring is a highlight.
Test of Time: Goes from absolutely terrible to good so often you're gonna be sick if you read it, and trust me I'm being literal here. Stupid premise to get the flashbacks, the flashbacks themselves start out good but fall into a pit quickly. I will never forgive the head master scene. NEVER
The Voyager Conspiracy: Since it was meant to be a parody of an original episode from the very beginning, does just that and well enough to be a bit of harmless fun. Morgan and Seven's spat though ruins it.
Fugitives: Another one to put on the Good Idea=Sh$$ Excecution list. Vicky really should get the hint, BUT at least James shows improvement in his dealing with unwanted crushes scenes. Episode doesn't make sense, is rushed, you get the idea.
Dark Frontier: Putting Morgan as the forefront instead of Seven worked and didn't at the same time. Worked as it showed her past, her insecurities, developed her well. Didn't as the original scenes still were there as if Seven was kidnapped. It's off putting more so with Morgan's development.
Upendi: Was supposed to be a racism is stupid, stop fighting episode, but was so badly handled and in turn very racist. Jessie and Morgan's fight is painfully awful. The opening scenes ripping off Red Dwarf do nothing to help it. The finale with the cliff battle and fall does save it from the bottom of the pile.
Muse: WTF is this?
Fair Haven 2: I like the idea, I like Tom solving his problems with the Holodeck, and I do like the opening scene. Everything else, NOPE
Too Q: Short and barely sweet. B'Elanna doesn't want to be a mum, is forced twice to be one but who cares, Tom's happy. 16 year old Morgan is guilt tripped and strongholded into keeping her fake 3 year old kid, despite not sleeping with anyone, dating, and for that matter being terrified of the thought. It leaves a bad taste. Foreshadowing though! It mostly does it well.
Fear: MC's get slowly kidnapped and tortured, Tom's torture makes you feel sympathy for a character you didn't like. James and Jessie go from snivvelling cowards to badass shoot to killers in a blink of an eye.
World Domination: Oops pressed the skip button
Prepare For Trouble: Pointless and stupid. Not much else to say.
VTV Live: Would've been a good one like Worse Case Scenario if it had cut out the boring Making of VTV scenes. Some of the skits aren't great, some are okay. Pals helps this be not dull.
Voyager's Drinking Game: Troublesome. It's Territory's prequel in a way, and almost as bad. Very Friends in Las Vegas'y. Worth it for the James and Tom scenes.
Thrown Key Part 1: Sorta good idea for an intended to be season finale parody. Not executed properly but I'm used to that by now. Part 2 is better but I only know that because the poster scene is a highlight for me and I always thought it was in Part 1.
My MAIN characters only, not the ones demoted to regular guest stars (Tani, Triah, Lilly and Emma). In order of appearance.
Craig: He started out as a one-note comic relief character, a guy who would make notes on all girls he saw and/or fancied and would fail all the time to get a girlfriend. When I started writing the series I had already decided to flesh him out to make him a MC. I did know though before doing this Re-Read that he hadn't had much done to him, so I wasn't surprised to find him 99% of the time still that creepy weirdo.
I could accept it if it were not for his obsession with Morgan. He knows from minute 1 she's Kiara, the kid he babysits, and 15 but still adds her to the list, and drools over her.
The potential is there. Upendi is a good example where he shows off his brave side. It's a rare glimpse of the great character to come.
"Damien"/The Boss: Oh boy. If you want to read my main thoughts on Damien, have a browse through Prepare For Trouble's review again. He started out as a bland 2 episode villain, was written in as a re-occuring parody villain you couldn't take seriously. He ended up as being hated so much by the characters and writers FOR NO REASON that I can see, that he had to be murdered while his dastardly plan of the day was to sing a parody of the Pokémon Theme. I don't know when the shift started to happen but worse of all, I don't understand why. It's a big deal because his origin story is not clean by any means, and his change into the actual Damien in Season Two is a long, very complicated and sensitive subject/story.
From Season Two onwards he's presented as a new character who has the same history with the crew as him. I'd have been better off starting afresh with Damien there, and keeping the Season One version as simply The Boss and permanently dead to keep them forever separate. The actual Damien could've easily been an usurper to the Boss with similar tastes (rabbits basically), be killed off in Dimension Jump and nothing really would change in the rest of the series, except for a few haha you tried to take over Voyager with rabbits insults.
There's so much dirty laundry with "Damien" as it is, that reading through the latter half of Season One has been an eye opener that's filled me with a massive amount of regret, which I wouldn't be surprised contributed to my December to present day as of editing this (late April) depressive breakdown. It's deserved I guess, or at least what happened in between Games Resistance and Dimension Jump was, I just wish I could explain to myself why I did it. Maybe I could make peace with myself, as I know the incident sparked off my depression in the first place. I was fine until this kicked off. Until I figure it out all I can say is I was a stupid 15/16 year old girl with a screw loose who got what was coming to her, and so much more.
But anyway, this Damien probably shouldn't count here in a "my main character" analysis. Damien wasn't really ever mine until Season Two. Still, only fair to bring him up anyway since they're linked.
Kiara: I wasn't expecting much. She's a baby/toddler for Season One. She's around a lot in the first half of Season One, only to be more or less replaced by Morgan for the second half to the point she disappears. Unless she's got a huge part in an episode, Kiara acts like the mischevious kid, speaks her mind and does what she wants. Still manages to be cute. However in episodes like Timeless or Mirror Universes her age triples, or more, and she becomes dull and pretty much annoying.
My biggest compliment though revolves around Morgan. Dark Frontier shows what Morgan was like as a kid, and its nothing like the way Kiara's presented in the series. You could say their upbringing creates two different people, that Kiara and Morgan are not the same girls anymore because of it. BUT it's really delicious foreshadowing.
SPOILER ALERT FOR S2 EP13 TRUE Q ONWARDS. I'll admit this much to you, as hinted anyway by my Kidz Trek notes, Morgan and Kiara were created as one girl and her alternate future self. My plan for FV was to bring my only prized storyline with Roxanne and Kiara into it, and instead revolve a series premise around the idea of them changing Voyager's course. I changed Morgan and Kiara's paradox later whilst writing the series, or really expanded on it. Even in the beginning there was a huge difference, other than what order they appeared. Q's involvement was always there from day 1, it just hadn't been fully figured out yet.
There are brief signs in Season One (or in Mirror Universes shouting from the rooftops with a megaphone) there was always more to it than Kidz Trek's version, what with Kiara being able to hear voices and see the/an alternate future in her dreams. Morgan doesn't really get this, Dark Frontier is influenced by the Borg Queen. She's had a few incidents of being shown to be strong but nothing else. To sum it up, Morgan and Kiara had plenty of hints they weren't the same person long before The Love Spell and then True Q hammers it home. Dark Frontier is a great example of a hint I had forgotten was there, and it made me so very pleased. SPOILERS END
As I mentioned already, Kiara is too young for her actual character to really be assessed too much so until Season Two, that's all for now.
Jessie: I'm very, very disappointed in her. Yes I knew she was Team Rocket Jessie for a while, and I knew she hadn't been fully developed until Season Two+. She's super vain, extremely violent and bad tempered over the silliest of things, holds grudges on the wrong people. What's her beef with Tuvok?
Her good moments are few, it's difficult to remember them all amongst all the turds she dropped here. I don't know exactly when her vengeful angry traits are toned down, but it can't come soon enough.
The only really good moments with Jessie are usually shared with James. Holo Q where she's always worried about him after saving her (forget the mummy crap), Upendi (same). They do have glimmers of chemistry in this season, ruined of course by OHMYGOD THEY'RE SO SIMILAR, LIKE TWINS rubbish and of course the mummy crap.
Then there's her denial of her crush on James, which is probably the only consistent thing in the season and I'm all for it. Apart from that one "eew" line in Upendi, it's not as silly and eeewcooties as I remembered it, and it fits with her character and backstory.
James: As a stark contrast to Jessie, I was pleasantly surprised by him. Sometimes though. He is all over the place, has different personalities to suit the scene he's in. Why am I pleased with him then? The moments where he is modern James, or shows signs of him, are far more common than I remembered. I figured Holo Q and Voyager's Drinking Game was it. He's been snarky, funny, aggressive, violent to the point he has killed twice already, clever, protective of Jessie, kids love him and he's wrong & good with them at the same time (Kiara scenes with him have been cute and funny, I don't count Timeless here), had moments of badassery, his abuse back story and the resulting insecurities have been handled sometimes quite well.
Sometimes, it's been absolulely horrendous. The flirty girls part most of all, all of these but Fugitives have been cringeworthy embarrasing.
I have said for years that I thought his Season Two development comes out of nowhere, is presented as a huge retcon as I thought I couldn't pull off any hints in Season One and left it till the last minute. I was a little wrong though. There's plenty of hints that there's more to him, that he's bad tempered and vengeful. I knew it wasn't made up on the spot when I wrote Interactions, sure, but I always thought I never showed it. The potential's there, the idea came from what I had done with him in Season One.
It's still abrupt, I'll admit. Definitely. Just not as much as I thought.
Yeah he's not perfect, and when I say perfect I mean in contrast with his modern day persona. I have many complaints. It all comes down to one thing though, inconsistency. One episode he can figure out what's going on and the next he's confused that his game saves aren't on a clearly different station. He's all for fighting the bad guy in one scene and the next he's squeamish and hoping to get out of visiting a planet. Can be cheeky and witty one moment, and another be like OHMYGOD YOU MEANIE and huffy/crying the next. It's off putting.
Morgan: Put another one down for the inconsistent tag, although James is still the king here. Morgan starts off in Timeline as a boring emotionless exposition machine, like Seven actually, almost as if she IS Roxanne in her first "chapter"/episode after being freed from the Borg Collective. Only in FV she never was in the collective and had a childhood, so what gives? It seems I remembered Morgan was supposed to have a personality from day one whilst writing Spirits (remember Timeline was written months in advance). Then she's very teenage like; abrupt, huffy, mischevious, against authority, morbid and all-talk.
All qualities that I'm A-OK with. This is supposed to be Morgan. She's 15-16 in Season One. Sure she can be annoying but what teenagers aren't? The only issue here is that she gets away with it far too much. The only exception I recall is Upendi and that has a whole boat load of problems you already know about.
It's in episodes like Upendi when it all goes to hell. Morgan is yeah supposed to be a little impatient because she's a hormone bomb 16 year old, has a little Janeway fire in her, but it seems like homicidal violent girl is the theme of Season One. It was like I was trying to make her more like Jessie. Or maybe it was so I could hurt Seven, I dunno.
Later seasons do portray Morgan as a girl with very little impusle control and can be hot tempered, BUT when compared to James is simply the good one. The one who always wants the better solution. Sees the good in some, which shows in her friendship with Craig sometimes. What I had in mind was she'd have Janeway and Chakotay qualities, she could be impulsive and yet is capable of being calm enough to think things through. She's less likely to make a deal with the Borg for example. The Equinox Saga in Season Four shows this much better than I can explain here. Episodes like Upendi do the opposite of the intention and ruin what characterisation she's had so far, which is the moody teen who wants to be like her mum but is years away from getting close, with glimmers of potential that she may even do better.
Meh, it's still a first season so I can't really complain all too much. This happens in a lot of serieses, books, films. Characters grow, develop, I'm just fortunate all of my cast do for the better as it can go the other way.
Season One's a mix bag. It's been a real eye opener going through it again, especially with the series now complete under my belt. I've enjoyed doing the reviews sometimes, and at times absolutely hated it (I'm looking at you Test of Time). It's easy to give Season One a pass because I was young, it was young, neither of us knew any better. It's a shame though that for years that was the gate to the series, which I believe would've put people off one way or another before they got to Seasons Four and Five, both of which I'm very proud of. You'd either have people who hate S1 and vow not to read anymore, or the ones who liked it and because of that didn't like what the series did gradually turn into.
It's a shame.
With the reboot I have a chance to fix one of those possible paths. I want people who'd like Season Five to read it, so Season One must appeal to them while at the same time not be TOO different so references/jokes still fit and still show the growth from 1-5 the original seasons have. If that makes any sense. No use Season One being better than Five, now is there?
I realised before I started this that Season One isn't the worst season, and my Re-Reads haven't changed my mind. Season Three had so much potential, ruined by my edgy wannabe depression years. B4FV1 was sort of spared this and instead went down the opposite path, trying badly to be Season One (despite my desire to have a different starting point to the series) and failing. It's hard to explain. Both S1's are similar as they're rushed, copied original episodes word for word and other material too, characters OTT, ridiculously silly and fourth wall mad with writers, but B4FV1 is worse in my opinion for one reason alone. Season One has a charm to it, a soul. B4FV1 feels hollow in comparison. It tries too hard.
Season One did bring in readers, not many but enough to keep me going. It had reviews on fanfiction.net that weren't WTF IS THIS themed. Something about it had appeal, which backs me up really. It's not great but it isn't wholly terrible, barring a trio/quartet of episodes. It doesn't match the style of later seasons but why would it? Season Five was mostly written by a 29-30 year old with years of experience with FV's world and its characters, while One was written by 15-16 year old naive newbie to everything, life, fanfiction, the internet. Of course it's going to be different.
I have learned to let myself off for some of the bad stuff in Season One, there is some stuff there though I can't believe even that 15 year old did. To close this season off I will say this, Season One wasn't perfect but as a first outing it could've been a lot worse. It had staying power, I got a series out of it. For that I can forgive a lot of its sins, that's for sure. No matter what stress and issues Fifth Voyager has given me in my life, and believe me it has done plenty, I don't regret it. I'm proud of it and I'm glad I stuck it out, and especially glad I came back and finished it.
Now I'll see you in 10 or so years for Marill Re-Reads Reboot Season One haha
For the moment maybe look forward or not to Season Two.