Star Trek: Voyager (1995): S01E07 – Eye of the Needle


Introduction

“Eye of the Needle” is the 7th episode of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: Voyager.

In this episode Voyager discovers and explores the nature of a wormhole.

Outline

Voyager detects the signs of a wormhole and changes course to investigate, in the hope that it can be used to shorten Voyager’s journey to Earth. To the crew’s disappointment, it is discovered to be a decaying micro-wormhole whose aperture is only about 30 centimetres (12 in) in diameter. Nevertheless, Captain Janeway suspects that it could be used to transmit a message to the Alpha Quadrant, and launches a micro-probe into the wormhole to determine where it exits.

The probe gets stuck in gravitational eddies, and is unable to pass any further. Meanwhile, a vessel at the other end of the wormhole is investigating and making scans of the probe. The crew of Voyager detect the scans and make contact, using the probe as a communications relay. The vessel identifies itself as a Romulan ship in the Alpha Quadrant.

Janeway asks the Romulan captain to relay messages from the crew to their families and Starfleet. At first he refuses, but relents after Janeway asks about his own family, who are far away on Romulus.

Before long, Chief Engineer Torres suggests to Janeway that the probe could be used as a relay not only for communications, but for transporting the crew directly back to the Alpha Quadrant. Tests are conducted and all found successful. The Romulan captain volunteers to transport to Voyager to confirm the safety of transporting a life form, and will arrange for a support vessel to rendezvous and accommodate the Voyager crew. He is then successfully transported to Voyager.

It is then discovered that the Romulan (Dr. Telek R’Mor of the Romulan Astrophysical Academy) is from 20 years in the past. The micro-wormhole transits through both space and time. The crew are unable to transport back to the Alpha Quadrant for fear of altering history, and similarly the Romulan cannot try to prevent Voyager’s fate before it occurs without also altering events. Instead, they decide that Dr. R’Mor will deliver the messages in 20 years, after Voyager has left the Alpha Quadrant, thus preserving the timeline.

After R’Mor is beamed back to his ship, Chief of Security Tuvok reveals that, upon researching the computer’s data banks, he has discovered that R’Mor died four years before Voyager left the Alpha Quadrant, before he could have passed on the messages. The crew hope that R’Mor arranged for someone else to deliver them after his death, but are left with no way of knowing for certain.

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Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Winrich Kolbe.
  • Writer(s): Hilary J. Bader.
  • Release Date: 20 February 1995.
  • Running Time: 45 minutes.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

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