Star Trek 628: Renaissance Man

628. Renaissance Man

FORMULA: Brothers + Tinker, Tenor, Doctor, Spy + Inside Man

WHY WE LIKE IT: The Doctor's multi-tasking.

WHY WE DON'T: Nothing's done with Vorik.

REVIEW: The Doctor doesn't do himself any favors with his smug and superior attitude in Renaissance Man, but as with Data in Brothers, it's really fun to see a super(non)human cut loose and really show his abilities' potential. The Doctor manages to impersonate a number of crew members, jump through walls, befuddle Tuvok on the holodeck, and totally own him with some Matrix-style fighting. He's a surprisingly good actor here (especially considering his "restraint" in Body and Soul when impersonating Seven), but that may be more new subroutines. He even makes use of his ECH persona to steal the warp core and get away (command codes are the best).

Pulling his strings are rogue members of the Hierarchy, once again using his matrix to see through his eyes. One of them's bad, the other's a nice, dumpy loser, in keeping with the species comedic tone. They've got Janeway, and the Doctor is only complying to save her life. The first scene makes a point of his ability to multi-task, and it's they key to their victory and rescue. While running the scam to steal the warp core (that cover story is a doozy), he has to play five parts (including his) AND manages to leave Voyager a clue to his whereabouts. So while Janeway is pissed that he disobeyed her orders and took the core, he still built an escape into his plan, with enough time left over for a little bedroom farce with Tom Paris.

Of course, they didn't want to create too powerful a character with this episode, so it's revealed that all the subroutines he had to take on in Renaissance Man are causing his matrix to decompile itself. While B'Elanna rushes to fix him, he breaks down and confesses all his secrets, including his love for Seven (she's in total denial though). B'Elanna's rueful expression when she saves his program is priceless. So much for his dignity. The Doctor gets his comeuppance.

Vorik makes his final appearance on the series here, but doesn't go the way of Joe Carey. Actually, nothing much happens to him at all. He gets about as much play as regular stuntman/extra Ayala, now in red at the conn and getting some lines. Gee, talk about a bad time to get your character developped. One episode to go!

LESSON: The Hierarchy is aware of Douglas Adams ("mostly harmless").

REWATCHABILITY - High Medium: A lot of fun.

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