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Ranking the ‘Star Trek: Voyager Crew’ By How Much They Need to Be on ‘Star Trek: Prodigy’

10 Minute Read
Jan 5 2023
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If Star Trek: Prodigy season 2 is a little bit Star Trek: Voyager season 8, we want the whole original crew back. But who do we rank highest?

Star Trek: Prodigy season 1 is over. And so, too, is our adventure on the Protostar. However, with the former crew under the wing of Vice Admiral Janeway as warrant officers, the adventure is just beginning.

What comes next? Well, we know two very important things thanks to series showrunners the Hageman brothers. Thing the first: the crew will be on a new ship that is not the Protostar. And thing the second: “we’re going to see a lot more familiar faces”.

Both pieces of information are extremely relevant to anyone who loves Star Trek: Voyager. Thus far, we’ve seen Janeway and her former first officer Chakotay make the leap to Prodigy. However, it sounds like other Voyager crew will also return.

Which Voyager legacy characters do we want back? All of them obviously! But let’s go in order of who can come back in order of how important their coming back is. This list is subjective. Feel free to weigh in with who you are most excited to see back and why.

Courtesy of CBS Television

9. Kes

Let’s get the obvious out of the way on our ranking. There’s very little reason to bring Kes back. Starting from the narrative perspective, her story is done. After three seasons on Star Trek: Voyager, the Ocampan ascends to a higher level of consciousness, leaves the ship, and pushes Voyager out of Borg space and that much closer to home.

Kes returns for one more episode: “Fury”. And the short version is that this final appearance is not very good. Kes is angry for being abandoned even though no one abandons her in the first place.

There’s a small argument to be made that a return for Kes means she can finally get a more fitting ending. However, Kes has god-like powers which makes her potentially difficult to navigate as a character, let alone explain, on Star Trek: Prodigy. And, moreover, Jennifer Lien, who plays Kes on ‘Voyager’ does not act anymore.

Short version: bringing back Kes likely means recasting and changing her on a fundamental level.

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Courtesy of CBS Television

8. Reginald Barclay

Lieutenant Barclay is not an official member of the Voyager crew nor is he ever lost in the Delta Quadrant. However, after his successful efforts to communicate with Voyager (against the order of his superior officer), Janeway dubs him an “unofficial” member of the Voyager crew. So he has to be in the ranking, right?

Barclay is, in many ways, Starfleet’s biggest screw-up. He has a holodeck addiction. He is chronically late for work. And Barclay clams up nearly every time it’s really important he speak coherently. But he’s also the guy who comes up with the most outlandish idea that actually works at the eleventh hour.

Having Barclay on Star Trek: Prodigy is a chance to see his personal growth. Like Sonya Gomez before him, does Barclay evolve from ship goofball to ship captain? Does he ever find long-term love with Hope or, who knows, even Leosa? There’s a lot we do not know about Reg’s fate.

More than anything, though, as someone who chronically feels like an outsider, Barclay can remind the former Protostar crew that, regardless of their beginnings, there’s always a place for them in Starfleet. And he may very well help Janeway figure out how to use a certain wormhole to travel to the future and save Chakotay.

The only reason Barclay is low on the list is that he’s only an “unofficial” Voyager crewmember who is just as likely to appear on Star Trek: Picard. Speaking of which…

Courtesy of CBS Television

7. Seven of Nine

Look, every ranking needs a little controversy, and this is probably the most “HOW DARE YOU?!” ranking on this list. Yes, Seven of Nine is the bomb dot com. Yes, Jeri Ryan is one of the best actors in the history of Star Trek. But in many ways, those are kind of the reasons why she’s so low on this list.

First, let’s consider the sticky wicket of Star Trek canon. Thanks to Star Trek: Picard season 2, we know that Janeway tries and fails to see Seven brought into the ranks of Starfleet. Seven is rejected and it is strongly implied that Seven and Janeway kind of fall out after that.

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And since, so far as we know, Star Trek: Prodigy takes place before the events of ‘Picard’ it may not make sense, from a timeline perspective, for Seven of Nine to appear. Also, she has a show already and there’s a good chance she’ll have another after.

All that being said, of course, we want to see Seven and Janeway together. Now that the real-life proverbial hatchet seems to be buried between Kate Mulgrew and Jeri Ryan, it would be lovely to see them act together even in animated form. Plus, if the Borg return, there’s no one else you want at your side than Seven of Nine.

Courtesy of CBS Television

6. Tom Paris

Next up in the ranking! Ah, Lieutenant Tom Paris. Or is that Ensign Tom Paris? No, no. Tom eventually gets his rank reinstated. The thing about Tom Eugene Paris is that, like, Reginald Barclay, he is kind of a screw-up. However, unlike Barclay, Paris turns things around by the end of Star Trek: Voyager.

However, that does not mean there’s no story left to tell Tom. We do not know how things are between him and his father Admiral Paris once Voyager returns home. And we have no idea what his relationship with his wife B’Elanna is. And, of course, we know Paris has a daughter, Miral. What is his relationship with her like? Sidebar: are we ever finding out what happened with him and Janeway’s salamander babies? Inquiring minds want to know!

Here’s another big relationship question: how is Tom Paris’s relationship with Chakotay before the former Commander vanishes? It’s worth noting that these two men often have an adversarial relationship. What if Tom and Chakotay aren’t on good terms? There’s a lot to potentially explore between those two.

Really, the only reason Tom Paris is lower on this list is because he’s already in the world of Star Trek: Lower Decks. We almost expect him to interact with Bradward Boimler more than his old Voyager buds. All that said, Robert Duncan McNeill is a great TV director and it would be a crime not to have him work both behind and in front of the scenes on Star Trek: Prodigy.

Courtesy of CBS Television

5. B’Elanna Torres

B’Elanna Torres is arguably the most underserved character in ‘Voyager’ history, so she has to get more from our ranking. There’s so much under the surface we do not explore. Yes, we know she is half Klingon and that she struggles with that. But B’Elanna often lives in that “I’m angry” space and she deserves more.

Yes, we want to see what sort of mother B’Elanna is. But ‘Prodigy’ is also a chance for us to see more than that. B’Elanna and Harry Kim sometimes act as counterpoints to one another, he is the Starfleet good boy, and she is the Maquis hot head. How has that relationship grown over the years?

And while we’re at it, what is her relationship with Janeway like now? Before Seven of Nine shows up, B’Elanna is Janeway’s pupil. There’s so much more to know. There’s a great ‘Voyager’ episode “Muse” where B’Elanna inspires a playwright to pen a show which ends a war before it starts. Does B’Elanna ever explore her storytelling side? And just as an engineer, it would be fun to see her teach Jankom Pog how to calm his nerves and wrangle a warp core.

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Like Robert Duncan McNeill, Roxann Dawson (who plays B’Elanna) is also a director so add her to our list of former Voyager crew we want in the director’s chair too.

Courtesy of CBS Television

4. Tuvok

It’s actually kind of unbelievable that Tuvok is not already a part of Star Trek: Prodigy. The very notion of Admiral Janeway without her best friend at her side on the Dauntless almost stretches credulity a little. Seriously, how did Janeway transition from coffee to tea without some serious Vulcan meditation? That’s why he has to be high on our ranking.

In-universe, we can explain away Tuvok’s absence pretty easily. It’s entirely possible the Vulcan security chief leaves Starfleet behind after Voyager returns home. Consider that he’s been away from his wife, his children, and his grandchildren for a very long time. It makes sense that he needs time away from Starfleet and with his family.

But Kirk needs Spock and Janeway needs Tuvok. And the Prodigy crew can use his wisdom as well. Zero and Dal especially, as our resident telepaths, can learn a lot from Tuvok. Of all the former Voyager crew, Tuvok is the most sensible crewmember to return. That does not make him the most interesting, though.

And with that in mind…

Courtesy of CBS Television

3. Harry Kim

Eternal Ensign no more, baby! Not in this ranking! Yes, Harry Kim, much like so many of ‘Trek’ characters, has his ongoing story with Star Trek Online, but it’s time he gets to officially not be an ensign anymore. In fact, if we take the Voyager episode “Timeless” into account, isn’t it time we meet Captain Harry Kim?

Harry is the Voyager crewmember who consistently does the most with the least. But who is he once he’s not the bottom run on the ladder anymore? From “Timeless” we know how jaded he can be. But what kind of leader is Harry Kim in a world where things work out?

For the Protostar crew, Harry is the second (more on that later) most useful Voyager legacy character precisely because he spends so much time as an ensign. We’re willing to bet he can teach Rok a lot about tempering her scientific innovations with pragmatism – Harry’s had a lot of practice with that.

Also, don’t you want to hear Harry call Janeway “ma’am” one more time so she can give him a healthy dose of side-eye?

Courtesy of CBS Television

2. Neelix

There’s that other controversial spot in the ranking you’ve been waiting for. But, listen: if it weren’t for the number one person on this list, Neelix is the absolute most important legacy Voyager character who needs to appear on Prodigy. And if you think about it for even a moment, you’ll know exactly why that’s true.

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First of all, whatever ship our crew is about to be on (it’s definitely Voyager), we know they are heading for the Delta Quadrant. Who is the only Voyager crew member who never leaves the Delta Quadrant? Neelix.

Back when Neelix is first introduced on Voyager his role is as an advisor. Nobody else knows the Delta Quadrant, but, as a native, Neelix has a lot of local knowledge to offer. Fast forward to now and he’s probably the most knowledgeable person all over again.

Neelix has another role on Voyager: morale officer. And one of the ways he boosts morale on Voyager is by helping the kids on board. Naomi Wildman and the Borg children likely would not have thrived without Neelix. He’s likely a father and even better at that now, making him essential to our Protostar kids.

And more than (almost) anyone from Voyager, Neelix really benefits from CGI animation. The Talaxian’s are weird-looking aliens – imagine what the Prodigy animators might do with him?

Courtesy of CBS Television

1. The Doctor

The reason the Doctor is in the number one spot is that, pound for pound, there are more reasons for him to specifically be on Star Trek: Prodigy than any other Voyager crew member. First of all: he’s a hologram. This means that, theoretically at least, he should not age. Robert Picardo has aged many years since Star Trek: Voyager ended. You know where that doesn’t matter? An animated series.

You know what the new ship (that’s 100% Voyager, just saying) needs that the Protostar never really has? A Doctor. Dal is an augment with the DNA of so many different lifeforms that it’s a shock he doesn’t have a full-time general practitioner already. And what about Murf? He’s already evolved once before! Who is to say he’s in his final form? We need a Doctor and who is better than the hologram with basically all the medical knowledge in the history of the Alpha and Delta Quadrants?

Also, here’s a big question: what’s the deal with photonic lifeforms? According to Star Trek: Picard, synthetic life is outlawed. The only hologram we see does not appear to be sentient. So where does that leave the Doctor? Where does that leave all holographic life?

The Doctor spends a lot of his time on Voyager lobbying for photonic rights. It’s very likely he has a whole lot more to say about that right now.

That’s our list! What characters do you most want to see from Star Trek: Voyager? And what are the big character arcs you want to see for them?

Lina Morgan
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