WHY WE LIKE IT: The Borg are very creepy.
WHY WE DON'T: Some pretty cheesy dialog.
REVIEW: Following the events of the previous episode, the crew get caught up with the Diviner's plan and find the weapon under the bridge, a weapon they can't begin to disarm. Just then, the Protostar crosses paths with a dormant Borg Cube (they would all be dormant following the other timeline's Admiral Jane's virus in Endgame) and the kids start thinking that based on hologram Janeway's briefing, they might be able to find a way to "adapt" a way to disarm the thing. It's what you might call an inconvenient convenience.
The adventure inside the Cube is the crux of the episode and it really does work. Animation is perfect for finally giving us different Borg body types (and head gear), though I really wish it'd gone further. It's always been a bit dull that despite having assimilated hundreds and hundreds of species, all the drones are humanoid. We get a big rhino-like drone in this, and Zero as green protoplasm of course, but that's all. Still, the Cube is a real creep fest, with weird angles and once they wake up, drones giving our heroes the side-eye. Zero having been part of a (telepathic) hive mind believes they are the perfect individual to plug into the Collective to raid the vinculum (that ol' Voyager lore, eh?) for information, which gives us an intriguing "cyberdecking" sequence, and there's no lack of action, escapes and so on. It starts to break down when an assimilated Zero almost drills a hole in Jankom and Gwyn has to reason with them, make them fight the hive mind. It just gets a little too saccharine for me. Zero has already found a strong collective, ha! It's "love will win the day" (in this case, friendship) and it's really facile when you consider that the enemy here is the friggin' Borg!
Once everyone's back on the Protostar, there's a lot of exposition, and a reiteration of those small corny sentiments. Sure, Dal is showing more and more maturity, and quickly accepts that they can't go to Starfleet when he learns the Borg's assessment of the weapon - it can't be removed or disabled - but I have a harder time accepting it because it means nothing really moved forward in this episode, except maybe drumming up interest for the show by bringing in the popular Borg. Dal's final punchline ("Resistance is futile") doesn't even make sense in this context.
Where things actually moved is in the subplots. Murf shows signs of being sick, which is going to become relevant later. And Janeway finds the destroyed relay station just as the Diviner wakes up in sickbay. Take notice of Janeway's eager ensign (Asencia, played by The Good Place's Jameela Jamil) as well; there's a reason she has all the solutions. But that's all just set-up.
LESSON: Find a collective you like and be loyal to it.
REWATCHABILITY - Medium-Low: Some exciting bits, but a cornball ending, and you could pretty excise this one from the season with little lost.