Star Trek: Voyager

Season 2 Episode 4


Aired Wednesday 8:00 PM Sep 18, 1995 on UPN
out of 10
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Episode Summary


Stardate: 48921.3
When the crew of Voyager investigate a cluster of space-borne life forms, Kes prematurely enters a stage in her life known as the "Elogium". This is the only time in her life when she can conceive a child.

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  • The Ocampa must give birth to litters to sustain their population

    With a swarm of alien sperm creatures attracted to Voyager and Neelix and Kes considering having a child, this bottle show (a holdover from the first season) places a heavy emphasis on instinct and hormones. The idea of a child growing up on Voyager is an interesting notion considering the crew's unique situation, and the episode even strays close to the issue of teenage pregnancy. Unfortunately, most of the plot sees Neelix and Kes struggling (separately) to decide whether they want to be parents or not, an interesting subject in the abstract sense but one that can and has been done on just about every kind of TV show. (What's really frustrating is that the writers force the two characters into making the weighty decision and then strip the decision of its consequences, which is really a writers' cheat so they can have it both ways).

    The swarm of sperm is notable for being an early CGI success for televised Star Trek, but it amounts to nothing more than a vanilla "ship in danger" B story. (It's strongly reminiscent of the B story for TNG's "Galaxy's Child", where an alien space baby mistakes the Enterprise for its mother).

    The interlacing of the two stories does neither any favors, though with Neelix and Kes being the dullest couple in Star Trek history, it's an uphill battle anyway. The most memorable bit is at the end, where we're teased with the foreshadowing of a character who does, in fact, appear later in the season.

  • Mating time!

    Seems like they were going for comic relief here with Kes going into heat, a supposedly once in a lifetime event. It was disturbing because I never bought the whole Neelix and Kes relationship, they had zero chemistry, and Neelix seemed too old for her. Neelix would have wanted to be a father, so his hesitation here, seems very out of character. Kes's symptoms are nasty. This is a good time as any for me to say, daum, that Kes wig is ugly. How did not one person protest about her butchered haircut, it looked so dry and brittle too and don't get me started on the Captains super asexual matronly, rigid governess type bun up do style she had going on the first season or two.moreless
  • Kes's people should have died out ages ago with those pregnancy rules

    Kes's race would have died out long ago if they only live 8 years, and only can be pregnant ONCE in that short lifetime. Ridiculous. No one thought that one through. Each woman would have to produce TWO offspring if men don't also give birth just to maintain the population status quo, so limiting them to one makes zero sense. Unless men also can procreate, or women very frequently have multiples (twins, triplets, litters) the population would be halved every generation, which in this case is maybe two years! The only other explanation I can think of is the Caretaker is also cloning that's dumb, too, because this race existed before the Caretaker ever showed up.

    I like Kes a lot, and the discussions of Voyager turning into a generational ship were interesting and worthwhile, but the space creatures were also silly. They move by flagellation -- against what? Creatures that flagellate on Earth move through water, or air. Think of how you row a boat -- you have to push against SOMETHING. There is nothing in space to push against.moreless
  • Elogium

    Elogium was a good episode of Star Trek: Voyager and I really enjoyed this episode because it was just a silly episode about sex and mating behavior which offered some laughs and serious moments for Kes who entered a natural biological process a little prematurely for her people. It was fun to consider her having a child with Neelix. The space creature amoebas were kinda cool, and this was like a discover channel episode to a degree. Over all not a particularly over exciting episode, but the implications were important to consider. I look forward to watching the next episode of Star Trek: Voyager!!!!!moreless
  • Issue of family.

    Elogium; in this case it translates to an average episode that is a marked let down after the interesting episode that preceeded it. The main theme or issue tackled in this one is that of pregnancy and family; namely whether it is inevitable considering the length of time required to return back to the alpha quadrant and the replacement of crew members that will be required over that period of time as well as it serving to counter the feeling of lonliness that is bound to surface.

    We get to see the issue addressed through some of the crew pairing off and a pregnancy of one of the minor crew members, the attraction of the space based beings that the Voyager flies into and is "attacked" by, but it is primairly presented through Kes and her entering the psysiological state in which she is able to concieve a child. A state that she can only enter once and thus a state that becomes a pressing a story driving issue. As far as the first two plot devices go, namely the pregnancy of the crew member and the alien life form, they both fail to really capture the viewer's interest or stick in the viewer's mind. The crew member is one who (as far as I can remember) we have never encountered before, and as such have no connection to or interest in. Whether we will see more of her and whether her pregnancy will take on a greater significance is left to be seen, but it is highly unlikely. The alien life form again serves as another instance of what is happening on the ship (pairing off and seeking a mate) and serves as the catalyst for Kes entering the Elogium, but ultimately fails to excite or stand out. The idea of nebulous life forms being sexually attracted to the mechanical Voyager actually seems a little absurd and generates a laugh but does not in the least generate the appearence of a serious threat. One good thing that can be said about the whole situation is that we are served with some unique visuals for seeing the beings and the nebula through the windows of the Captain's Ready Room.

    As far as the main storyline with Kes, the physical change and process is a little extreme and seems to be more of a punishment or pain state rather than one which is needed to promote the continuation of her species, but Jennifer Lien does a supurb job in protraying it. From the beginning she has done a great job in getting the innocence, hunger for knowledge and subtle seduction of the Kes character across to the viewer and as such makes Kes as appealing and intesting as usual even when going through such a profound psyiological process. What interferes with the continuity of the whole idea behind the change in Kes and her need to procreate is the apparent conflict in Nelix's character that arises when he is presented with this need in her. Right from the beginning (and even more in the last bit of season one and the start of season two) it is apparent that Nelix borderlines on psychosis when it comes to Kes and their relationship and percieved threats to that relationship. In fact very shortly after this episode we get a story that is based primairly on that jealousy and percieved threats, but even before that we are aware of his mindset and his devotion to her. As a result Nelix's reluctance to jump right in an bond with her and go through the ritual to concieve a child her (one which would in theory cement their bond tighter and would be the first time he could physically mate with her) comes off as a marked conflict in Nelix's character, motivations and previous actions. Without this reluctance and deliberance on his part there would not be a story though, so it comes off as a dual edged sword that both damages the continuity of the whole idea but in whose absence there would be no story to tell at all. One interesting thing and an episode hilight to come out of this conflict is that we get to see an engrossing conversation between Nelix and Tuvok in which we learn some of Tuvok's family life and VERY minimally get to see some emotion in him as concerns his life back home.moreless
Gary O'Brien

Gary O'Brien

Male Crew Member

Guest Star

Terry Correll

Terry Correll

Female Crew Member

Guest Star

Nancy Hower

Nancy Hower

Ensign Samantha Wildman

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (4)

    • This episode establishes for the first time that, although Neelix and Kes may have been virtually inseparable, they weren't sharing quarters aboard Voyager.

    • Trivia: Tuvok reveals he has four children: three sons and one daughter.

    • Goof: When Chakotay is in the turbolift with Paris and Kes, he calls for Deck 6. The next scene has Chakotay following Paris and Kes into the Mess Hall, which is on Deck 2.

    • Nitpick: Kes says that an Ocampa female can have a child only once in her life. Later, in "Parturition", she says that when Ocampa mate, they mate for life and things like infidelity and divorce are unheard of. That means that the men can only have one child as well. There is no way a species could survive like that. The population would decrease by half each generation until they were extinct. However, it's possible that she meant that Ocampa are only fertile once, but that they might bear more than one child during that single pregnancy.

  • QUOTES (3)

  • NOTES (2)

    • This is one of four episodes that were written and produced as part of the first season but held back to air in the second season.

    • This was the first appearance of Nancy Hower as Samantha Wildman. Jimmy Diggs named the character after a seven-year-old girl whose kidneys were donated by her parents after her death, saving the life of Diggs' wife. When he learned the girl loved animals, he made Wildman a xenobiologist.