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Dark Reality

OMG, Torres' revenge on the Holodoc!

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The last episode my wife and I watched is my absolute least favourite Trek episode, Voyager's "Real Life" - because it's also IMO the saddest Trek episode ever. I can't get the ending out of my mind - I cannot say for certain if I were the Doc and that were a real situation, I wouldn't take my own life. That was beyond messed up and wrong.

 

So I've been thinking about it. I thought that if I were the Doc, I'd be seriously ticked off at Torres because she altered his program and IMO did his experience a lot more harm than good. You do not have to lose a child to "get the full experience" of parenting.

 

Then I remembered just a few episodes back, in "Darkling", Holodoc (while under the influence of psychotic personalities erroneously added to his matrix) paralyzes Torres from the neck down, tells her that humanoids pass out at a certain level of pain, but threatens to suppress that reaction and put her in unimagineable pain (as he's portrayed as doing to someone else in one of my favourite Voyager episodes, a couple seasons later). He doesn't do it, but he does put the thought in my mind.

 

My theory is that Torres exacted revenge on him by setting up his virtual daughter to die in what has to be the absolutely saddest scene in any Trek (unless you're a big TOS fan and you're thinking of Spock's death at the end of TWOK - which IMO fails because we all know he comes back in TSFS). And I have good arguments for every counterpoint I can think of.

 

First, 24th century Humanoids (especially those in the Federation) aren't prone to revenge. They're too good for that. Torres is half-Klingon, so this argument just about fails. But further, Torres has a very rocky past, distaste for Starfleet and was a Maquis officer. Revenge is a part of Klingon culture (albeit very structured and ritualistic). Didn't her father leave or something? He was Human (and probably in Starfleet, because her mother wasn't) as well. The Doc is modeled after a male Human and represents Starfleet in uniform and rank. Revenge is practiced in the Maquis, and if that isn't canon, it's a very safe assumption. Further, Starfleet kicked her out. She's cool with the Starfleet crew on Voyager, but that doesn't mean she's made nice with the ones in the Alpha Quadrant and probably still hates a lot of them, those who have fought her and the Maquis.

 

Second, while Torres did know that the Doc was under the influence, she also should clearly remember Doc trying to expand on his personality and almost having to be virtually lobotomised, but was saved at the end by merging his matrix with his diagnostic program (also modeled after Zimmerman). Now he's at it again, so he can easily be blamed for messing things up for tampering with it again.

 

Third, she's the one who tampered with his family program. I made sure, while watching this, to make specific note of this. I thought I would need it later and it came in handy. Kes agreed the program needed work, but Torres was the one who did it, on her own and without Kes' input, or the Doc's. She just took the idea and ran with it. She said she put random elements in. BEST case scenario, she didn't add any parameters. Such as, "give the Doc the family from Hell, but none of them die". She could have even set up a few scenarios and let the computer pick one (others may have including the mom dying, a pet dying, the son getting arrested set up by his friends, or any number of other strong issues Doc would have to deal with). But I think it's plausible that she planned it.

 

But why? First time the Doc tries to expand his personality, something goes wrong. The second time he does it, he almost tortures her under its influence. She has good reason to want the Doc to not pursue any more customisations. Especially if she's read up on some of Data's mishaps on the Enterprise-D. Or the holodecks'.

 

Who knows. Maybe that episode just really bothered me. I've always wanted to have kids, at least 2 girls. So maybe I'm just so angry at what the Doc had to go through that I want to blame someone, and Torres is a good and likely target. But hey - at the very least she owed him an apology for what happened, but they never speak of it again. That's real dodgy.

 

Your thoughts?

 

Memory Alpha: Darkling

Memory Alpha: Real Life

Edited by Dark Reality

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That did seem a bit mean-spirited, didn't it?

 

I mean, she was ostensibly trying to show him what "real life" (Hey, that'd be a good title for the episode! :frusty:) is like. And while real life is often that bad--and sometimes worse--she could've let the guy have a good family experience that was more realistic...because those happen too! (Really! Sometimes they do! LOL!)

 

So maybe it was subconscious revenge on her part... I don't really know.

 

But I do agree that it seemed rather unnecessary and ever so slightly cruel.

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