“Flesh and Blood” is a two-part episode from the seventh season of the science fiction television series Star Trek: Voyager.
The crew of USS Voyager must contend with violent Delta-quadrant aliens the Hirogen, who use the holodeck technology with a horrific amoral twist.
Originally aired as one double episode, it was then aired as two separate episodes, of approximately 45 minute each.
Voyager works to repair the ship as the crew discover the Doctor’s abduction of Torres. The ship is met by the two Hirogen vessels. The Hirogen survivors aboard Voyager are beamed to these ships, except Donik; the Hirogen warn Voyager to not follow them as they continue to hunt the holograms, or they will become the hunted. Once repairs are completed, Janeway orders the ship to follow the Hirogen, using a trick for staying in the Hirogen’s blind spot of their warp trail as suggested by Donik.
On the holo-ship, Torres is initially outraged and believe the Doctor’s programming has been modified, but the Doctor explains that the holograms’ plight is similar to that of the Maquis of which she had been a part of, and offers that her technical assistance will help resolve the conflict peacefully. Iden identifies a nearby Y-class planet that he names “Ha’Dara”, Bajorian for “Home of Light”, where they will set up their photonic society. The Doctor agrees, offering that Voyager can supply them with cultural works to enlighten them, but Iden refuses to have any association with organics.
En route to the planet, they come upon a Nuu’bari mining vessel that uses photonic beings for manual labor. Iden orders the Nuu’bari to turn over the holograms, but the crew refuses; Iden takes the photonic beings by force and destroys the ship. However, they find that these holograms lack any personality, individuality or even normal intelligence. The Doctor accuses Iden of destroying innocent lives, but Iden insists his actions were just. The Doctor and Torres find other holograms to have become wary of Iden’s intentions, even as they arrive at Ha’Dara and deploy the holo-emitter.
The Hirogen detect the Nuu’bari ship destruction and use that to track the holo-ship to Ha’Dara. Voyager arrives shortly after and fires weapons to disable their weapon systems, and prepares to fire on the holo-ship. Iden, in revenge, transports several of the Hirogen from their ships to the surface where they are hunted by the holograms. The Doctor tries to stop Iden, but Iden shuts down his programme and takes the personal holo-emitter before transporting down to the planet to engage in the hunt.
Torres tries to convince Kejal to rebel, saying that Iden is not the leader of peace time. She reminds her that it is the engineers like herself and Kejal that actually build societies.
However, Iden comes in, and then the Nuu’Bari holograms are activated, but no matter what he says, they simply do not understand. Iden wonders if they are malfunctioning, but Torres explains that they are programmed to support only about 40 basic subroutines. Kejal confirms this and Iden calls this yet another form of oppression. Demanding they be enhanced, Torres explains that their programs are not complex enough to allow it. Iden simply brushes it off, claiming that he will deliver them to freedom. The bridge informs Iden they are now in orbit of the planet. Iden has Torres restrained; The Doctor demands Iden let Torres go, but he refuses because he now sees through her prejudices towards holograms.
Kejal retrieves all the holograms sent to the surface, though Iden remains there since he is using the mobile emitter. Torres restores the Doctor’s program and has him sent to surface via the large emitter. The Doctor finds Iden before he can execute the Hirogen leader and tries to convince him to stop. Iden refuses to listen and, as he proceeds to land a lethal blow, the Doctor fires his weapon, fully disrupting Iden’s programme.
The surviving Hirogen are treated and returned to their ships. Their leaders demand they claim the hologram ship and its databanks, but Janeway and Neelix suggest it is better to state the ship was destroyed as to be able to report a more successful hunt. The Hirogen agree and depart. Torres, Donik, and Kejal find they cannot recover Iden’s program, but believe this is for the best. Kejal and Donik decide to stay with the hologram ship, working to reprogram some of the other holograms as to undo the damage they caused. On Voyager, the Doctor accepts his responsibility for disobeying orders and working with the holograms, offering to forego his mobile emitter to give up his freedom, but Janeway feels that is far too much punishment for doing what someone of flesh and blood would likely do in the same situation.
Star Trek TV Series
You can find a full index of Star Trek TV series here.
Star Trek TV Series, Films, and Documentaries
You can find a full index of all Star Trek TV series, films, documentaries here.
Production & Filming Details
- Director(s): David Livingston.
- Writer(s): Bryan Fuller and Raf Green.
- Release Date: 29 November 2000.
- Running Time: 45 minutes.
- Country: US.
- Language: English.