Star Trek: Voyager (1995–2001)
17 user 4 critic

Real Life 

As Janeway leads an investigation into an unheard of space phenomena, B'elanna tweaks the Doctor's all too sugary creation of a holographic family towards "real life."


Anson Williams


Gene Roddenberry (based upon "Star Trek" created by), Rick Berman (created by) | 4 more credits »




Episode cast overview:
Kate Mulgrew ... Capt. Kathryn Janeway
Robert Beltran ... Cmdr. Chakotay
Roxann Dawson ... Lt. B'Elanna Torres (as Roxann Biggs-Dawson)
Jennifer Lien ... Kes
Robert Duncan McNeill ... Lt. Tom Paris
Ethan Phillips ... Neelix
Robert Picardo ... The Doctor
Tim Russ ... Lt. Tuvok
Garrett Wang ... Ensign Harry Kim
Wendy Schaal ... Charlene
Glenn Walker Harris Jr. ... Jeffrey (as Glenn Harris)
Lindsey Haun ... Belle
Stephen Anthony Ralston Stephen Anthony Ralston ... Larg (as Stephen Ralston)
Chad Haywood Chad Haywood ... K'Kath


The Doctor creates a holographic family, but B'elanna Torres thinks the Doctor's simulation is too "nice" (in a "Leave It to Beaver" sort of way) and introduces some alterations to the program to make the simulation more accurate to real life: a wife who often disagrees, a rebellious teenage son, and a daughter who is sure she knows better than her doting father. When his daughter is critically injured, the Doctor must make a choice: run back to his Voyager life, or face the harsh "reality" of losing a loved one. Meanwhile, Voyager could lose Tom to a totally unknown space phenomena. Written by Meribor/additional information by statmanjeff

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TV-PG | See all certifications »

Did You Know?


Robert Picardo was especially happy to work with Wendy Schaal on this episode, with whom he appeared in Innerspace (1987) and The 'Burbs (1989), and became good friends. See more »


Having dinner with the Doctor and his family, B'Elanna seems to satisfy any hunger she may have from the meal. In other episodes, the crew has to save energy and ration to use food replicators or else suffer the cuisine of Neelix. If the crew can freely use the holodeck, they could easily have scenarios where they get well fed and bypass the replicator rations. Also, if the ship has to ration their energy (assuming the replicators use the same energy source as the holodeck), why do they make such frivolous use of the holodeck? Furthermore, why does a utility hologram appliance such as the Doctor even need to use the holodeck, wasting more ship's energy? See more »


Lieutenant Tom Paris: [reading from Torres's PADD] "Rork turned his fierce eye upon her, and M'Nea felt her heart begin to quicken, even as her hand went to her dagger. She had intended to plunge it into his throat, but something about him made her hesitate...?" B'Elanna, is this a Klingon romance novel?
Lieutenant B'Elanna Torres: The Klingons do have what you might call a romantic side. It's a bit more vigorous than most.
Lieutenant Tom Paris: I think I'll read it. Maybe it'll give me some ideas about how to make YOUR heart quicken.
Lieutenant B'Elanna Torres: It's not a technical manual, Tom.
Lieutenant Tom Paris: ...
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Klingon music
[A recording blared by The Doctor's son]
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User Reviews

Painful to watch on two levels.
20 February 2015 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

"Real Life" is an episode of "Star Trek: Voyager" you can live without seeing. It does nothing to really further the overall story and seems like the writers were stretching the Doctor's character a bit too far. In this case, the Pinocchio-like Doctor has decided that to be more human, he has to have his own family. Most of the show concerns this make believe family. At first, they are like a "Donna Reed Show" family but after B'Elanna makes some changes to the program, they are a family in constant crisis and turmoil--too much. How the Doc deals with all this is a bit painful to watch towards the end...and it's a bit painful to watch because it's rather stupid as well.

Overall, this is not a terrible episode but it is forgettable and amazingly contrived.

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Greek | English | Klingon

Release Date:

23 April 1997 (USA) See more »

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Production Co:

Paramount Television See more »
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Sound Mix:

Dolby | Stereo



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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