Star Trek’s Kes & Doctor Relationship Is Great, Then Voyager Forgot It


The early seasons of Star Trek: Voyager showcased a gem of a friendship between the holographic Physician and Kes that’s among the many greatest within the sequence. Kes’ inherent compassion and pure empathy make her a wonderful foil for the Physician, permitting them each to develop independently of stereotypes others have about them. The decline of Kes’ character in later seasons of Voyager will be attributed to the neglect of her friendship with the Physician, resulting in weak storylines and mischaracterization.

Whereas many individuals contemplate season 4 of Star Trek: Voyager to be the “actual” begin of the present, Voyager’s early seasons forgot a couple of gem of a friendship between the holographic Physician (Robert Picardo) and Kes (Jennifer Lien) that’s among the many greatest Star Trek has to supply. The Physician, not too long ago featured in a clip from Star Trek: Prodigy season 2, is undoubtedly Voyager’s breakout character, and his journey from sickbay mainstay to fan-favorite singing hologram and information of the Voyager-A would not be attainable with out Kes to kick it off early in Voyager’s run.

Critics of Kes typically ignore, and even deny totally, all of the ways in which she was nice earlier than the deterioration of her character and subsequent departure in Star Trek: Voyager season 4. Early Kes is able to seeing the great in everybody, as evidenced by her romantic attraction to Neelix (Ethan Phillips). Her inherent compassion and pure empathy make her a wonderful foil for the Physician, whose preliminary outlook on the world is way extra cynical. After her placement at his facet in sickbay, each Kes and the Physician start to find their very own inherent worth, and in flip, are in a position to develop independently of the stereotypes others have about them.

Kes & The Physician’s Voyager Relationship Was Nice

voyager doctor and kes s1

In Star Trek: Voyager season 1, the Physician and Kes have an interesting friendship that pushes each of them to develop past reductive stereotypes and flourish as particular person characters. Earlier than their assembly, the Physician is merely the Emergency Medical Hologram, a program designed to meet a selected operate within the absence of an natural medical skilled. Kes, on the similar time, is accustomed to being within the care of others: first within the Ocampa metropolis on her homeworld, after which in a relationship with Neelix that has a critical imbalance of energy. Each of them have roles to play within the eyes of others, and each aren’t even conscious that they’ll develop past the strict parameters that outline them.

After Kes begins working with the Physician frequently, she will see firsthand how the Physician’s actions exhibit that he is a pondering, feeling particular person, and never only a assortment of photons and subroutines. She believes he is worthy of as a lot respect as any natural life type, and treats him just like the particular person he’s. The Physician does not pity Kes for her quick lifespan, however takes it as the straightforward medical indisputable fact that it’s. He does not contemplate her a toddler to be protected and does not shelter her the best way others have. As an alternative, he additionally exhibits her the respect that she deserves. Of their friendship, Kes and the Physician each allow one another to say company, to allow them to decide their very own paths.

Voyager Dropping The Physician’s Friendship Led To Kes’ Character Decline

Neelix And Kes From Star Trek Voyager

Voyager appears to overlook about this vital friendship because the sequence continues. Neelix’s ongoing jealousy and possessiveness pull Kes away from socializing with different characters, which supplies her little to do apart from dote on him. As Kes develops pure telepathic talents, she spends extra time with the Vulcan, Lieutenant Tuvok (Tim Russ), who discourages the shows of pleasure and pleasure that characterised her earlier appearances. She’s nonetheless a fixture within the sickbay because the Physician’s area medic, however with out the mutual good thing about their friendship, her characterization stagnates. Because of this, Kes turns into much less standard, will get much less display time, and loses probabilities to develop her character past her roles as Neelix’s girlfriend or Tuvok’s scholar.

Neelix and Kes break up in Star Trek: Voyager season 3, however by then it is too late to reverse the injury to Kes’s character. The breakup that makes Neelix a stronger character leaves Kes floundering with weak storylines and mischaracterization. Voyager by no means fairly latches onto the truth that her steadfast perception within the goodness and company of others is consultant of nice Star Trek, and she or he’s summarily written out of Star Trek: Voyager in season 4. It is a disgrace that Kes isn’t actually given her due, however thankfully, her intrinsic compassion and friendship stay on within the influence she has on the Physician.