Star Trek: Voyager: Season 4, Episode 10

Random Thoughts (19 Nov. 1997)

TV Episode  -   -  Action | Adventure | Sci-Fi
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Voyager visits a planet with a telepathic races that outlaws negative thoughts. When B'Elanna is charged with releasing an angry thought into the society and condemned to a dangerous ... See full summary »



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Title: Random Thoughts (19 Nov 1997)

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Episode credited cast:
Guill (as Wayne Péré)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Bobby Burns ...
The Woman


Voyager visits a planet with a telepathic races that outlaws negative thoughts. When B'Elanna is charged with releasing an angry thought into the society and condemned to a dangerous neurological procedure, Tuvok uncovers a black market dealing in violent thoughts. Written by Meribor

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

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24th century | See All (1) »




Release Date:

19 November 1997 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The second time that Tuvok's mind is probed for thoughts we see flashes of chaotic and violent acts... Many of them are scenes of hell used in the movie Event Horizon (1997). Dr. Wier can been seen several times. See more »


When Chief Examiner Nimira takes a tour of Voyager's brig with Tuvok, she states that her society has no such idea of a brig and that holding a person away from society seems barbaric. Yet when the central crime occurs on her planet, she holds Torres and Frane in a jail facility, which is exactly what a brig is. See more »


B'Elanna Torres: Where we come from, people are responsible for their own actions.
Chief Examiner Nimira: And here, people are responsible for their own thoughts.
See more »


Features Event Horizon (1997) See more »


Star Trek: Voyager - Main Title
Written by Jerry Goldsmith
Performed by Jay Chattaway
See more »

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User Reviews

More "Voyager" stupidity!

Once again, coming hot off the heels of an excellent bunch of episodes in the "Year of Hell", we return to typical Voyager stupidity and mediocrity.

This one, however, much like others, is one in which an average episode is completely undermined by an ass-backwards way of thinking that the Voyager writers seem to have that seems to confuse "tolerance" and "enlightened thinking" with "bending over backwards and letting other people walk all over us" See, in this episode, they go to a planet full of telepaths, and some random guy accidentally steps on Torres's foot. Some time later, this guy beats a man to death, and later, they arrest Torres, because apparently she thought a violent thought when the man stepped on her foot. A violent thought that was entirely visceral, coming from her subconscious, as she quickly mentally forgave him when he said it was an accident.

Of course, this doesn't stop them, because apparently this thought is contagious, and could lead to violence throughout their world. So, in true "1984"-style Thought Crime fashion, they root out people who have bad thoughts, and give them a mental "purging" of their violent thoughts. This is repeatedly compared with lobotomizing by many characters.

So they plan on putting Torres through this rather than imprisoning her, after the main female guest star leader person smugs it up and calls us low, primitive creatures for imprisoning people.

Tuvok, because he's not that much of an idiot, suspects shenanigans, and slowly discovers that there's a black market of violent thoughts---people selling violent thoughts for fun, because they are forbidden. Tuvok eventually shares some of his own in exchange for the lead black market guy turning himself in to save Torres.

Then the very end is where the episode derails from the tracks of good and moral thinking and becomes the puddle of stupid that makes it seem that the writers of this episode thought "1984" to be a cute little read, but nothing at all serious; Seven of Nine confronts Janeway in that direct, Borg way of hers, saying it was unacceptable for her to be following Starfleet regulation in such a way that nearly got TWO of her high-ranking officers killed. Janeway says this was a GOOD thing, because exploration and first contact is in their nature, and that they must learn about new cultures and their ways and respect them in order to learn more, and in this way they can learn to better understand and tolerate civilizations they encounter in the future.

No Janeway, you must not.

In this case, the brutal, tyrannic crackdown on violent thoughts lead to one crewmember nearly being murdered by black market thugs, and another nearly being subjected to a serious mind-invasive procedure that could have produced any number of unknowable side effects on someone of a completely different species.

The worst part is that they learn NOTHING from this except paranoia. Not only was Torres's violent thought UNINTENTIONAL, but it's something that ALL humans and humanoids like Klingons and Romulans and perhaps even Vulcans can have happen to them when caught off-guard by someone seemingly stupid.

So because of their insane level of political correctness and fetish for tolerance, the Captain and the writers of "Voyager" take on an attitude that is the equivalent of tolerating the prosecution of "thought crimes" as displayed in the book "1984" Only it's EVEN WORSE because in this society, you are still prosecuted for UNINTENTIONAL thoughts! As someone who has very frequent obsessive thoughts, I would likely have been lobotomized every few days if I lived in a society like this, because I have thoughts I do not like and cannot completely do away with or control the way these people claim to do.

Way to fail, "Voyager" "All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing" - Edmund Burke

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