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DVD Review- STAR TREK: VOYAGER Season 6

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PHOTOGRAPHY

STAR TREK: VOYAGER- THE COMPLETE SIXTH SEASON

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS:  26 episodes on 7 discs, featurettes on disc 7

STUDIO: Paramount

RELEASE DATE- 12/7/2004

PREMISE: The U.S.S Voyager is thrown into the Delta Quadrant and make the long journey home to the Alpha Quadrant as they explore and face new threats.

DISC ONE- EQUINOX Part 2, SURVIVAL INSTINCT, BARGE OF THE DEAD, and TINKER, TENOR, DOCTOR, SPY

DISC TWO- ALICE, RIDDLES, DRAGON'S TEETH, ONE SMALL STEP

DISC THREE- THE VOYAGER CONSPIRACY, PATHFINDER, FAIR HAVEN, BLINK OF AN EYE

DISC FOUR- VIRTUOSO, MEMORIAL, TSUNKATSE, COLLECTIVE

DISC FIVE- SPIRIT FOLK, ASHES TO ASHES, CHILD'S PLAY, GOOD SHEPHERD

DISC SIX- LIVE FAST AND PROSPER, MUSE, FURY, LIFE LINE

DISC SEVEN- THE HAUNTING OF DECK TWELVE, UNIMATRIX ZERO PART ONE

ANALYSIS: STAR TREK: VOYAGER is a show I missed out on for the 6th and 7th season since there was no local station carrying UPN shows and that Canadian station on the cable system lost the rights to the show. I was able to get some fo the season six and seven episodes taped for me around the start of season 7 (and received the series finale from another friend). Now I have had the chance to watch the 21 episodes of season 6 I have never seen. What I found is that season 6 is that it stronger than the sixth seasons of The Next Generation or Deep Space Nine. Some characters do get more attention than other, but Season 6 is filled with some of the best VOYAGER episodes and a variety of different stories.

The writers experimented with a variety of stories from including a couple of Next Generation characters (Barclay, Troi) in a couple episodes (which are among the weakest of the season) to focusing on minor characters like the Borg children and three crew members that slipped through the cracks (GOOD SHEPHERD). Even a couple of episodes focus on the Irish village of Fair Haven that Tom Paris created on the holodeck. UNIMATRIX ZERO proves that no STAR TREK show has pulled off a good season 6 finale.  The holodeck episodes are just a diversion to watch once (I rather have seen more Captain Proton instead of some Irish village) and the Borg children episodes are good.  However the season six opener (EQUINOX Part 2) proves to be a strong conclusion to the fifth season finale (EQUINNOX Part 1). MUSE is one of my favorite episodes of the season in addition to ONE SMALL STEP.

BEST EPISODES OF THE SEASON: EQUINOX PART 2, SURVIVAL INSTINCT, ONE SMALL STEP, MUSE

VIDEO/AUDIO: All 26 episodes are presented in 1.33:1 Full Frame. Colors and blacks are good. Image Quality is sharp. Some episodes look sharper than others while some are grainy. Overall, the show looks as good as or better than TV Quality.

The episodes can be heard in English 5.1 Dolby digital and 2.0 Dolby surround. I still prefer the 5.1 mix to the original 2.0. Dialogue comes through clear as a bell, and music and sound effects are good for the show. The only subtitles are English.

SPECIAL FEATURES:

BRAVING THE UNKOWN: SEASON SIX focuses on the making of EQUINOX Part 2, PATHFINDER, TSUNKATSE (with info on Jeri Ryan's stunt double), and BARGE OF THE DEAD with interviews from Berman, Braga, Roxann Dawson, Kate Mulgrew, and Marina Sirtis. Also there are short featurettes focusing on SPIRIT FOLK, FAIR HAVEN, LeVar Burton on directing Voyager, TSUNKATSE (Jeffery Combs talks about his character), and UNIMATRIX ZERO.

ONE SMALL STEP: A MARS ENCOUNTER talks about the episode, the future of space exploration and the involvement of Trek actors in Space organizations such as The Planetary Society, Planetary Society's "Red Rover" program, and video from the Marsapalooza event.

VOYAGER TIME CAPSULE: CHAKOTAY has clips from all seven seasons, fellow actors saying how funny Robert Beltran is on set, and Beltran talking about the character of Chakotay and working with Ray Walston. GUEST PROFILE: VAUGH ARMSTRONG focuses on an actor who has played several different characters on The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, and Voyager. Vaughn recounts his terrifying experience at the Blackpool Convention, singing Star Trek songs, and about different characters he played in various Trek episodes including Voyager episodes like FURY (season 6), SURVIVAL INSTINCT (season 6), and ENDGAME (season 7).

RED ALERT!- AMAZING SPECIAL EFFECTS has the effects team going into detail a little bit about the effects in the various Voyager episodes (with temp footage, work-in-progress CGI work, how Ireland influenced two season 6 episodes including how photos of one area in Ireland was turned into matte paintings): BARGE OF THE DEAD, FURY, TIMELESS, LIFE LINE, DARK FRONTIER, BLINK OF AN EYE, ONE SMALL STEP, the Captain proton episodes in Season 5, and NIGHT.

Also on among the Special Features is a photo gallery for season six.

MENU DESIGN:  A Species 8472 ship is featured.

SET DESIGN:  As usual, you have to watch out for DVD bookcases that are cracked and this time the plastic slipcase pieces fit together better.

FINAL ANALYSIS: With the variety of stories told in the sixth season, STAR TREK: VOYAGER proves to be full of ideas still. The featurettes provide loads of info like theeason 5 set did. Paramount has done a great job with the Sixth Season DVD set.

this DVD Review is (c)12-2-2004 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission. Send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com  

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