(written from a Production point of view)
A group of aliens perform experiments on the crew without their knowledge.
- 1 Summary
- 2 Log entry
- 3 Memorable quotes
- 4 Background information
- 5 Links and references
Torres climbs through a Jefferies tube. Something is depleting power from a warp core diagnostic she was running in engineering, and she is trying to find the source of the problem. She comes upon Seven of Nine who is working at an energy conduit. She finds that Seven is causing the power drain by diverting power away from non-key areas to the under-construction astrometrics lab. Commissioned by Captain Kathryn Janeway, this lab, using both Starfleet and Borg technology, will vastly improve Voyager's stellar cartography and sensor capabilities. Seven of Nine will be in charge of it, in effect becoming the ship's chief astrometrician.
Seven's power diversion is disrupting Torres' work and Torres confronts Seven, telling her she should have had the power diversion cleared first. She remonstrates her about following procedure but then stops as she realizes that she sounds like Janeway. She adopts a more understanding tone and tells Seven that if she herself, a hot-tempered Starfleet Academy dropout and former Maquis can adapt to Starfleet life and procedure, Seven can as well. Seven apologizes for her actions.
In sickbay, Lt. jg Tom Paris, functioning as a medical assistant, begs The Doctor for time off telling him he has a conn report to finish. The Doctor sees that Paris is lying but lets him leave, with a curious look.
Paris thanks him and leaves. He goes to a corridor console, calls up a plan of the ship, makes sure nobody is around, and initiates a site-to-site transport. He materializes in engineering, there to meet Torres. They kiss but, as they do so, a strange effect is seen: they are anatomically scanned, right down to their skeletons. Torres suddenly gets the feeling that they are being watched but brushes it off and they return to kissing each other.
In her quarters, Captain Janeway is being given a vigorous osteopathic massage by The Doctor. He complains that she is over-stressing herself, mentioning the nagging headache she has been complaining of. It has been plaguing her for the last several days and is getting worse, feeling "like hot needles" in her skull. Commander Chakotay, hails her from the bridge with news that they have found the source of energy readings they had been tracking. Janeway ends the massage, to The Doctor's annoyance, and heads for the bridge.
She arrives and sees on the viewscreen what Chakotay called her to see: two binary pulsars. Chakotay informs her of the extent of the combined gravitational pull: anything within fifty million kilometers is getting pulled in and destroyed. He informs her that Voyager is well out of range. Chakotay comments that they can still collect some invaluable data if they are careful but notices that she is not paying attention and the strain on her face from her headache is evident. She apologizes, puts the project in his hands and leaves the bridge.
Paris again goes to engineering to meet Torres. She makes an excuse for them to go to the area's upper level, where they will be alone. Once there, they again engage each other amorously, even more intensely than before. However, they are caught; Lt. Cmdr. Tuvok walks in and finds them embracing. He hands Torres a PADD with data she had requested. Profoundly embarrassed, she and Paris quickly regain their composure and Torres rambles an awkward thank you. Tuvok leaves without comment. Paris rushes out after the Vulcan and seeks an assurance from Tuvok that he will say nothing and make no report of what he saw. Paris obtains no such assurance.
He and Torres attend a senior officers' meeting, called to discuss plans to collect data about the pulsars. The two try their best not to look embarrassed by what happened in engineering. Chakotay conducts the meeting, while Janeway sits quietly, looking as ill as before. When it is done, she dismisses the staff, all except Paris and Torres. Alone with them, she harshly chews them out for their "adolescent behavior" for senior officers, setting a very poor conduct example.
Paris mentions Tuvok, assuming he told her, but she sharply lets them know that he did not as it is their own behavior that has been making such a display that the entire crew is gossiping. She angrily orders them to act with better judgment and dismisses them. They scurry out and she holds her badly aching head in her hand.
Chakotay is in his quarters, working on the planned data collection operation but he cannot concentrate on his work. He replicates some coffee but as he sips it, the same anatomical scan that was seen being performed on Paris and Torres is seen being performed on him. His hands begin to shake so much he drops the cup. He goes to the bathroom, runs water into the sink and washes his face, passing his hand through his hair.
Chakotay is in sickbay on a biobed. He has aged considerably. Janeway, despite her own recurring migraines, is there, getting a report on his condition from The Doctor. He confirms that Chakotay has indeed rapidly aged. His DNA segments that regulate metabolism have been hyper-stimulated, causing the effect. The Doctor cannot guess as to what is causing this hyper-stimulation. Chakotay insists his mind is still at his chronological age and wants to get back to work but The Doctor insists he stay put, with Janeway's agreement. The Doctor asks her permission to set up an electron resonance scanner in the science lab to look at his DNA more closely and Janeway agrees.
In the mess hall, Paris sits with Ensign Harry Kim ruefully discussing the stern chewing-out that Captain Janeway gave him and Torres. Neelix takes their breakfast order and goes into the kitchen to prepare it. Suddenly the loud crash of pots and pans hitting the floor is heard. The two officers rush in, alarmed, and find Neelix on the floor, in great pain. They urgently hail sickbay.
In sickbay, Neelix' appearance has changed drastically. His entire head is now covered with spots as opposed to just his temples, spots much larger than what he had, and his whiskers are gone. The Doctor, after examining him, finds that, like Chakotay, his genes too have been altered. Instead of aging, Neelix is actually changing species, becoming a Mylean, the race of his great-grandfather. The Doctor leaves Paris in charge and goes to the science lab to work on their genetic analyses. Torres is assisting The Doctor but soon after he is gone, two more crewmembers come in ill and calls notifying of impending new arrivals start coming in. With nothing else that can be done for them, and some of the reports being emergencies, Paris releases Chakotay and Neelix to their quarters.
The Doctor and Torres scan Chakotay's DNA. They notice something very odd: black marks on the base pairs sequences. Full magnification shows them to be tags, like 20th century barcodes. Neelix' DNA is tagged as well. It is a logical hypothesis that these tags are causing their condition. Moreover, they find that the tags are actually emitting a very weak signal. They begin to run a scan for possible receptors using the ship's internal scanners.
But then The Doctor begins to waver. Torres checks his mobile emitter and discovers with great alarm that he is being deleted. She immediately begins transferring him back to sickbay but then screams and collapses. The Doctor urgently hails the bridge, before he himself disappears.
Captain Janeway, Paris, Kim and Seven of Nine are in sickbay, around Torres' biobed. The Doctor is absent and sickbay is now full of patients. Paris reports that Torres' lungs suddenly ceased to process oxygen, nearly killing her. Janeway looks disheveled and sleepless as her migraines have increased in intensity. She asks about The Doctor. Kim explains that the computer logs show he was trying to transfer himself to sickbay and he theorizes that something must have gone wrong with the transfer.
But then Seven of Nine hears an urgent hail that none of the others hear. It is The Doctor. He urgently tells her he has tapped into her Borg audio implants. He is hiding in the captain's Leonardo da Vinci holoprogram in Holodeck Two. He asks her to join him at once, cautioning her not to tell anyone. Seven listens but her attention is called back by Janeway sharply calling her name. To the others it looks as if she was daydreaming. Responding to a question about The Doctor's research, she responds that she examined the lab but the electron resonance scanner apparently malfunctioned. She offers to go and repair it, using that as excuse to leave for Holodeck Two. Janeway agrees and she quickly leaves sickbay.
She arrives at the holodeck and enters the Da Vinci simulation. The Doctor has disguised himself as a painter teaching a bunch of holographically-created art students. He urgently informs Seven of a conclusion he has arrived at: someone aboard is deliberately causing the genetic alterations that are afflicting the crew. Why this is being done, he cannot say. But he and Torres were getting close to finding the culprit and were "dealt with." Seven surmises that communications may be monitored, if this accusation is true.
He agrees and, to gather more information, he modifies her ocular implant to scan visually along the frequency on which the genetic tags are transmitting. After this is done, she looks around the simulation but sees nothing out of the ordinary. She leaves to search the rest of the ship, intending on reporting back to The Doctor using the isolated comm frequency with which he has tapped into her audio implants.
Seven walks through the corridors, ignoring sight in her organic eye and focusing her attention on her ocular implant. At first, she sees nothing unusual. Then she sees a crewmember walking briskly. She switches attention to her organic eye; all looks normal. But with her ocular implant, she sees a grotesque-looking device on the crewmember's head, with tubes going up both his nostrils. He nods at her pleasantly, apparently completely oblivious to the device. And she sees something else with her implant: a brown-robed humanoid alien, who passes and monitors the crewman.
Seven feigns absolutely no indication of awareness of the alien. She boards the turbolift, the alien boards with her and sticks a large metal probe into her chest. She continues acting as if nothing is happening and, when the doors open again, the alien removes the device. She steps off and continues down the corridor of another deck.
Crewmen go past her, some with devices on them, others without, each completely unaware of what is happening. She enters the mess hall and finds most of those present have devices on them. Brown-robed aliens attend to the devices, taking readings and adjusting them. The devices are attached to various body parts: head, shoulders, necks, backs, legs, etc. Seven, again giving no indication that she is seeing anything out of the ordinary, pretends to pour herself a cup of coffee. She contacts The Doctor using her audio implants and tells him what she is seeing. He tells her to go and inform the captain immediately.
Captain Janeway is in her ready room, looking extremely agitated and irritable. Tuvok comes to see her and notes her condition. After discussing official business, Janeway then talks to Tuvok about the incident between Paris and Torres. She tells the Vulcan that she's sick of people taking advantage of the lack of protocol and orders Tuvok to straighten out the heads of each department. Tuvok then asks if he should "flog" them as well. This makes Janeway realize she's overreacting and maybe she needs a vacation. Seven comes to see her ready to inform her about the aliens, only to be stopped in her tracks to find that Janeway also has one of the alien devices on her. Metal spikes are sticking into her head while two aliens are on either side of Janeway, adjusting the devices to drive them in even deeper (this clearly being the cause of Janeway's severe headaches). Seven quickly regains her composure and, since she obviously can no longer inform Janeway of what is going on, she tells her instead that her attempts to fix the scanner in the science lab have failed and asks for help. Janeway assigns Kim to assist her and then all but shouts at her to leave. She quickly does so.
Returning to the Da Vinci simulation, Seven informs The Doctor that she counted 56 aliens and surmises that they are performing experiments on the crew. They decide that the next course of action they are going to take is to stop the aliens and their experiments. The Doctor says that they must act quickly, before these induced genetic mutations, growing ever more serious, start becoming fatal. Seven suggests that a phaser beam should make the aliens visible, however The Doctor points out that this may cause the aliens to retaliate by inflicting severe mutations on the crew, before recalling his earlier hypothesis that the genetic tags are the key and suggests causing a ship-wide neuroleptic shock to disable them. Although the shock will be, as The Doctor puts it, "rather… painful" the crew will recover. Seven suggests modifying the ship's EPS relays to deliver the shock. The Doctor agrees with her plan.
Seven goes to engineering to make the modifications. Here, too, the aliens are present, with their devices on crewmembers. She begins overriding the safety protocols but Tuvok, on the bridge, notices at his tactical console her modifications. He hails her and demands to know why. Seven responds and makes up an explanation. Unconvinced, and remembering the last time Seven began fiddling with the ship's systems, he goes to engineering himself, armed with a phaser and orders her to stop. Three aliens, unseen by him, take notice and approach them curiously.
Forced into a corner, Seven abandons the plan and instead quickly grabs Tuvok's phaser, changes the setting and fires at one of the aliens. She becomes visible and Seven quickly grabs her. Tuvok and the Engineering Crew look on as Seven warns the other two, still unseen, that she will kill the captured one if they do not back off. Seven sternly informs the captured alien that the captain will certainly have questions for her.
The alien sits quietly in a cell in the brig. Her name is Alzen and her race is called the Srivani. Captain Janeway enters with Tuvok and Seven. She looks almost deranged with pain and anger. She orders Seven to continue trying to disable the tags and Tuvok to modify the internal sensors to detect the Srivani and then dismisses the two.
Barely containing her rage, she demands the alien identify herself and explain what she and her fellows are doing to her and her crew. The alien calmly responds that they are scientists and are performing medical research on them. She insists that their techniques are "as benign as we can make them" and proudly states that their research benefits millions of their people, who live longer and healthier because of it. Janeway angrily tells her what they are doing is barbaric and unethical but Alzen is unmoved, claiming that Janeway would behave no differently to protect her own crew.
Janeway drops the force field barring the cell's doorway and enters, struggling to control herself. She responds angrily that that her actions are in self-defense but what the Srivani are doing is viciously exploiting another species for their own benefit. Alzen merely observes that Janeway's restraint has been remarkable, considering that they have been steadily raising her dopamine levels and hyper-stimulating her aggressive impulses to test her behavioral restraints. She remarks that there is much debate about how much strain she can bear.
At this, Janeway nearly snaps. She seizes Alzen and slams her against the bulkhead. "Not much," she hisses through gritted teeth, before barely regaining control of herself and releasing her. Alzen calmly, but now with an edge of sternness, warns her not to interfere. The research, she says, will continue. There will be minimal fatalities, she assures Janeway, though, she adds, there may be some deformities. But any interference, she warns, and the entire experiment, along with its "subjects," will be terminated.
Janeway calls an emergency meeting in the ready room. She, Tuvok, Seven and The Doctor try to come up with ideas to get rid of the Srivani. The internal sensors are unable to detect them and the Srivani have modified the EPS relays to prevent Seven from inducing the neuroleptic shock. More and more people are being taken to sickbay with increasingly severe symptoms and a direct confrontation would be unwise due to their ability to tamper with the crew's DNA.
Then a hail comes from the bridge: another medical emergency. They rush out to find a crewmember lying on the floor, convulsing. Her face is horribly crisscrossed by ruptured blood vessels. The Doctor desperately tries to save her but fails. The Srivani have raised her blood pressure to far beyond fatal levels. Every vessel in her entire circulatory system has burst. Janeway desperately tries to revive her but cannot.
Janeway looks at the body and decides that this must end, now. She storms to the navigation consol, angrily relieving the officer on duty there, who immediately vacates the seat. She sits and angrily punches in a course and initiates red alert. The ship heads for the pulsars.
Seven informs her that a Srivani has come onto the bridge. Tuvok warns her that they have to change course at once or be caught in the stars' gravitational pull. She refuses. At operations, Kim reinforces the ship's structural integrity field as much as possible, not that it will help against the pulsars' crushing gravity.
The Srivani intruders' leader, Takar, makes herself visible and sternly asks Janeway what she hopes to accomplish. Janeway responds that she is trying to crush the ship like a tin can. The Srivani sneers that it is more likely she is trying to intimidate them. Janeway sneers back that she is welcome to stay and find out.
Takar tries to lay in a course change, but Janeway informs her that the course is locked in and only the captain's authorization can unlock it. Takar tells her that she is not behaving rationally. Janeway nearly laughs and responds that this is what they wanted with their experiments, to see how much she could take before going over the edge. They caused this by raising her dopamine levels to the point of madness and by depriving her of sleep for four consecutive days with the constant, maddening pain of their devices in her skull. She coyly tells them that they are now seeing the result of their experiments on her and they will be right there to collect the final data. Takar grows frantic. She orders Janeway to change course, reminding her that they can kill the crew in an instant. Janeway tells her that without the crew, they will never be able to prevent the ship from being crushed by the pulsars. And even with the crew, the chances of survival are one in ten but Tuvok quickly corrects her that their odds are one in twenty.
Takar's face flushes with fear. She backs away and vanishes. At the auxiliary tactical console, Seven informs Janeway that two alien vessels are disengaging from Voyager's hull. The top of the saucer section is engulfed by the fire of the stars' aura. Two small ships become visible, attached to the hull. They detach and pull away but one explodes.
Back on the bridge, Seven reports hull breaches on three decks. Janeway replies that their best chance of survival is to attempt to race between the stars at maximum impulse. She keeps the ship on course and cranks the impulse engines up to maximum. Helm control fails and main power goes off-line. Janeway stares at the pulsars on the viewscreen, the brightness of their light washing over the bridge. Voyager glows red…
And passes between the stars, coming through on the other side.
The hull cools down. Janeway, Seven, and Kim sigh with relief. Sweat is on Janeway's brow. She comments jocularly to Tuvok that she did not know he considered her reckless. Tuvok responds that that was, clearly, an understatement. Janeway snickers.
Paris and Torres have dinner in Paris' quarters. The menu is salad and red wine, Ktarian merlot from 2282. A hail comes from engineering, informing Torres of a problem with the warp core's plasma manifold. She orders it locked down and she will deal with it in the morning. They begin to eat but are interrupted by the door chime. It is Kim who is returning a PADD. He tries to make conversation with them but Paris shuts the door on him in mid-sentence. They remove their combadges, to prevent further interruption. As they move to kiss each other, they joke that their attraction to each other must be a residual effect of the Srivani experiments and they kiss.
- " Captain's log, stardate 51244.3. With the aliens gone, The Doctor has been able to remove their devices from the crew and neutralise the genetic tags."
"Seven of Nine, this is The Doctor. Can you hear me? It's me, The Doctor. I've tapped into your audio implants so only you can hear me. It's imperative that you tell no one. Make any excuse to get out of there and report to holodeck two. I'm hiding in the Da Vinci simulation. I'll explain everything when you get here."
- - The Doctor secretly contacting Seven
"You are security chief. Don't thirteen department heads report to you every day?"
"Well, straighten them out."
"Shall I flog them as well?"
- - Captain Janeway and Tuvok
"Don't move. If your people attempt to incapacitate me, I will kill you."
"I believe you. What do you intend to do now?"
"You will come with me to speak to the captain. I am certain she will have questions for you."
- - Seven and Alzen, upon the latter's exposure and capture
"Who are you? And what the hell are you doing to my crew?"
"My team has been observing you and conducting tests."
"Tests? I'd call them mutilations."
- - Janeway interrogating Alzen
"Sorry, these lab rats are fighting back."
- - Janeway, to Alzen
"Good morning, captain."
"That's a matter of opinion."
- - Tuvok and a tired Janeway
"Captain, what are you doing?"
"I'm running a little experiment of my own. Red alert!"
- - Janeway, to Tuvok, as she guides Voyager into the binary pulsar
"What do you hope to accomplish by this?"
"Flying into a binary pulsar? Seems like I'm trying to crush this ship like a tin can."
"It's more likely that you're trying to intimidate us."
"You're welcome to stick around and find out."
- - Takar and Janeway
"That's what you were trying to accomplish, wasn't it? Hmm? Pumping up my dopamine levels to push me to the edge, keeping me awake for four days straight with the constant pain of your devices drilling into my skull. Well, this is the culmination of your work, and – guess what – you're going to be right here to collect the final data."
- - Janeway, to Takar
"I never realized you thought of me as reckless, Tuvok."
"A poor choice of words. It was clearly an understatement."
- - Janeway and Tuvok
"I don't know about you, but I'm curious to see how this experiment turns out."
- - Tom Paris, to B'Elanna Torres while they are kissing
"I know what you're going to say, Doctor, but I can't neglect my responsibilities."
"Actually, I was going to suggest a change of outfit."
- - The Doctor and Captain Janeway, as an overstressed Janeway begins to leave for the bridge, wearing only a towel
"Do you think he'll say anything to the captain?"
"I don't know."
"Well, how did he sound? Annoyed? Amused?"
"Sounded Vulcan – what more can I tell you?"
- - B'Elanna Torres and Tom Paris
"I don't believe it, we're alive!"
- - Harry Kim, after Voyager successfully passes through the binary pulsar
"If I could adjust to Starfleet life, so can you."
- - B'Elanna Torres and Seven of Nine
- Production number: 011-40840-175
- Final draft script: 25 July 1997 
- Working title: "Tagged" 
- Day 1 – 29 July 1997, Tuesday – Paramount Stage 16: Leonardo da Vinci's workshop; Paramount Stage 8: Kathryn Janeway's quarters
- Day 2 – 30 July 1997, Wednesday – Paramount Stage 8: Briefing room, captain's ready room, bridge, Chakotay's quarters and bathroom
- Day 3 – 31 July 1997, Thursday – Paramount Stage 8: Captain's ready room, bridge
- Day 4 – 1 August 1997, Friday – Paramount Stage 8: Mess hall, turbolift, corridor near mess hall; Paramount Stage 9: Jefferies tube, engineering, corridor near engineering
- Day 5 – 4 August 1997, Monday – Paramount Stage 9: Sickbay, corridor
- Day 6 – 5 August 1997, Tuesday – Paramount Stage 9: Science lab, Tom Paris' quarters
- Day 7 – 6 August 1997, Wednesday – Paramount Stage 16: Brig; Paramount Stage 9: Engineering, corridor, turbolift
- 2nd Unit – 5 September 1997, Friday – Paramount Stage 8: Chakotay's bathroom, Jefferies tube; Paramount Stage 9: Science lab, engineering, corridor/turbolift at cargo bay, Jefferies tube
- Airdate: 29 October 1997
Story and script
- Executive producer Jeri Taylor once described this episode as "a show we weren't entirely sure about in the script stage." Moments later, she elaborated, "We were afraid it was just going to be corny." (Star Trek Monthly issue 36, p. 13)
- Neither the Srivani nor any of its members are named in this episode; their titles and names coming from the installment's shooting script. (Star Trek: Voyager Companion (p. ?)) In addition, the call sheets for the episode also feature the species and the individual names.
Cast and characters
- Apparently, Robert Picardo enjoyed the chance that this episode of Star Trek: Voyager gave him to show off his physique. Midway through the fourth season, he said of the episode, "Of course, you got to see me wear tights for the first time [....] The wonderful thing about working with Jeri Ryan when I was also wearing the Spandex was that Jeri thought it was completely OK to treat me as a sex object, and it was. It was something I had been begging for for years. I've always felt I had the nicest butt in the company, but I'm sure there are eight other butts that would care to differ." (The Official Star Trek: Voyager Magazine issue 18) In a more serious demeanor, Picardo also recollected, "The day that I wore those tights, Jeri pinched me on the butt about five times. She was just so delighted that someone else had to wear tights on the show!" (Star Trek Monthly issue 45, p. 16)
- Co-Executive Producer Brannon Braga believed that, owing to a teaser image that he thought was good, this episode's depiction of the relationship between Paris and Torres was successful. "I thought it worked well in 'Scientific Method,'" Braga remarked, "in that it allowed us to see two people kissing with an X-ray machine on, which was pretty creepy." (Cinefantastique, Vol. 30, No. 8/10, p. 85)
- Shortly prior to performing in this installment, Torres actress Roxann Dawson and Paris actor Robert Duncan McNeill talked for a long time about how the episode explores the relationship between their characters. Dawson told McNeill that, in her interpretation of the episode, the reason why their romance was heated to an unusual degree was because it was like the characters were tipsy from having had a couple of drinks that the aliens were supplying, so that the romantic feelings between Paris and B'Elanna were real but were simply being accentuated by the aliens' influence. (Cinefantastique, Vol. 30, No. 9/10, pp. 92-93)
- Roxann Dawson was pleased with how this episode portrays the relationship between her own character and Janeway. "It's nice because you see the kind of respect that I've gained for her," Dawson said after the episode was shot, "and how much it really hurts me to have her be upset with me." (Star Trek Monthly issue 34, p. 12)
- During production on this episode but between takes, Kim actor Garrett Wang visited his trailer on the Paramount Pictures lot and spoke to Lou Anders from there, via telephone. Moments after Wang mentioned that the series had a new cast member, Anders heard Jeri Ryan laughing and shouting in the background. Wang momentarily excused himself from the call and, as he talked with Ryan away from the telephone, Anders heard indistinct words being exchanged. When Wang returned to the call, he told Anders, "I just played a little trick on our new cast member." Wang further explained, "Everybody has name tags on their trailer, which show whose trailer it is. So, I've been putting alternate names on a black piece of tape and pasting it on top of the real names." In the background, Jeri Ryan called out, "I put it on my refrigerator." Wang responded, "Did you?" The discussion between Wang and Anders then got underway, they conversing about the fourth season in general as well as other episodes. (Star Trek Monthly issue 33, p. 33)
- Jeri Taylor was highly satisfied with this episode's production. "'Scientific Method' really came off in production," she remembered. "David Livingston directed it and just did a fantastic job." (Star Trek Monthly issue 36, p. 13)
- Robert Picardo was impressed by the visual effects in this episode, noting the installment "had very good opticals." (The Official Star Trek: Voyager Magazine issue 18)
- The death of a crewmember on the bridge in this episode brings the total number of confirmed crew deaths since the series premiere "Caretaker" to 14, the previous death having occurred in "Unity". This would put the crew complement as of the end of this episode at 147, given that a crew complement of 148 was most recently established in "Distant Origin" and "Displaced".
- Shortly before discovering that he is losing his hair, Chakotay reviews the USS Excelsior logs seen in "Flashback".
- Seven of Nine wears her third different style of bodysuit in this episode. Although it has the same brown color as in the previous episode, "The Raven", this bodysuit has a high neckline like the earlier silver version.
- This episode establishes that there are 257 rooms on Voyager.
- This is the last episode in which Janeway has long hair and wears it in a hair-clipped ponytail since "Future's End". In the next episode onward, she has short hair and wears her hair loose.
- In this episode, the full extent of Chakotay's tattoo can be seen.
- The Srivani are similar to the Vidiians in their methods. Both experiment on other species for the benefit of their own.
- This episode is similar to TNG: "Schisms" in that the respective crews are unknowingly being experimented on by aliens.
- The accelerated ageing suffered by Chakotay in this episode is similar to that suffered by the crew in TOS: "The Deadly Years". Despite this, The Doctor does not suggest a similar cause.
- A real binary pulsar, PSR J0737−3039, was discovered in 2003.
Reception and aftermath
- This episode achieved a Nielsen rating of 4.6 million homes, and a 7% share.
- Robert Picardo joked that viewers were delighted to see him in tights during The Doctor's visit to the holodeck in this episode. "I know [it] was an extraordinary thrill for our regular viewers," the actor jested. (The Official Star Trek: Voyager Magazine issue 18)
- Much to her own surprise, Jeri Taylor loved this installment's final version. "When I saw it all put together, I was just knocked out," she reminisced. "I thought it just had everything. It was very creepy and full of suspense." (Star Trek Monthly issue 36, p. 13)
- Cinefantastique rated this episode 2 and a half out of 4 stars. (Cinefantastique, Vol. 30, No. 9/10, p. 85)
- Star Trek Monthly issue 39, p. 62 scored this episode 4 out of 5 stars.
- The unauthorized reference book Delta Quadrant (p. 206) gives this installment a rating of 5 out of 10.
- Several props and costumes from this episode were sold off on the It's A Wrap! sale and auction on eBay, including the costumes of Rosemary Forsyth, Annette Helde, and Jodi Reese.   
- The Star Trek: Section 31 novel Shadow establishes the woman who is killed on the bridge in this episode as Ensign Roberta Luke, a Section 31 operative assigned to Voyager in order to gather information on Maquis activities.
- The Star Trek: Section 31 novel Abyss also mentions the Srivani.
Video and DVD releases
- UK VHS release (two-episode tapes, CIC Video): Volume 4.4, catalog number VHR 4625, 4 May 1998
- As part of the VOY Season 4 DVD collection
Links and references
- Robert Beltran as Chakotay
- Roxann Dawson as B'Elanna Torres
- Robert Duncan McNeill as Tom Paris
- Ethan Phillips as Neelix
- Robert Picardo as The Doctor
- Tim Russ as Tuvok
- Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine
- Garrett Wang as Harry Kim
- David Keith Anderson as Ashmore
- John Austin as operations division officer
- Debbie David as Russell
- T. Capper as command division officer
- Kelli Coloma as Dorado
- John Copage as science division officer
- Damaris Cordelia as Foster
- Christine Delgado as Susan Nicoletti
- Carrie Dolin as operations division officer
- Brian Donofrio as science division officer
- L.J. Dougherty as Sharr
- Kelly Doyle as Srivani scientist
- Sarah Drury as Srivani scientist
- Maria Dykstra as Srivani scientist
- Andrew English as operations division officer
- Tarik Ergin as Ayala
- Heather Ferguson as command division officer
- Kevin Finister as operations division officer
- Sylvester Foster as Timothy Lang
- Holiday Freeman as an operations division officer
- Caroline Gibson as operations division officer
- Dunya Grant as operations division officer
- Nathalie Huot as Carlotta
- Alicia Lewis as sciences officer
- Susan Lewis as operations division officer
- Lisa Madigan as Srivani scientist
- Randy McKenney as holographic artist
- Rad Milo as operations division officer
- Arthur Murray as command division officer
- Paolo Nana as holographic artist
- Brita Nowak as operations division crewmember
- Katrina Polansky as Srivani scientist
- Ansuya Rathor as holographic artist
- Keith Rayve as command division officer
- Jodi Reese as Srivani scientist
- Jennifer Riley as science division officer
- Joey Sakata as operations division officer
- Richard Sarstedt as William McKenzie
- Lydia Shiferaw as command division officer
- Hallie Singleton as command division officer
- Pablo Soriano as operations division ensign
- Simon Stotler as operations division ensign
- Noriko Suzuki as operations division officer
- Unknown performers as
- Cameron – stand-in for Jeri Ryan
- Sue Henley – stand-in for Kate Mulgrew
- Joyce Lasley – stand-in for Rosemary Forsyth
- Susan Lewis – stand-in for Roxann Dawson
- Lemuel Perry – stand-in for Tim Russ
- J.R. Quinonez – stand-in for Robert Picardo
- Keith Rayve – stand-in for Robert Duncan McNeill
- Joey Sakata – stand-in for Ethan Phillips
- Richard Sarstedt – stand-in for Robert Beltran
- Simon Stotler – utility stand-in
- John Tampoya – stand-in for Garrett Wang
- Piper Taylor – stand-in for Roxann Dawson
- Unknown performers as
22nd century; 2282; ability; adolescent; adrenal stress; aging; alveoli; amusement; ancestry; Annunciation; arthritis; audio implant; auxiliary power; auxiliary systems monitor; base pair; bio scan analysis; blood pressure; bone decalcification; Borg Collective; brain death; brig; cardiac arrest; cardiopulmonary resuscitation; chief engineer; circulatory system; coffee; command code; compositional analysis; conn report; decalcification; deformity; department head; desktop monitor; digestive system; DNA; DNA analysis; door chime; dopamine; duty shift; dyne; electron resonance scanner; EPS relay; escape velocity; Excelsior, USS; experiment; eyesight; flogging; flower bouquet; fork; gamma radiation; genetic disorder; genetic tag; Ginevra de' Benci; gravitational force; hair loss; headache; heart; holodeck; hull; hull stress; hull temperature; hypertensive shock; inn; intermarriage; internal bleeding; internal organ; internal sensor; Intrepid-class; Intrepid class decks; invasion force; Jefferies tube; kilometer; kiss; Ktarian Merlot; lectrazine; Leonardo da Vinci's workshop; lion; log; love; lung; massage; masseur; master systems status; medical ethics; medical probe; microbiologist; micro-inducer; milligram; mirror; model; month; mutation; mutilation; Mylean; Neelix's great-grandfather; neuroleptic shock; osteopathic pressure therapy; oxygen; paranoia; Petri dish; phase variance; phaser; phenomenon; plasma manifold; pleeka rind casserole; power coupling; progeria; proton burst; psychological disorder; pulsar; pupil; quarters; rat; red alert; resolution; safety protocol; salad; schematic; science lab; scrambled eggs; sculpture; senior officer; sensory node; Siena; sink; site-to-site transport; spinal column; Srivani; Srivani illnesses; Srivani vessel; St. John the Baptist; statue; stress; subspace field geometry; tactical course projection; Talax; Talaxian; taste bud; tattoo; temperature; tin can; tissue necrosis; towel; trapezius; tumor; turbolift; Tuscany; type 4 micro-inducer; viewscreen; Virgin and Child with St. Anne, The; visual acuity; vocabulary; Vulcan; week; Wildman, Samantha; wine; work area
- "Scientific Method" at StarTrek.com, the official Star Trek website
- "Scientific Method" at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
- "Scientific Method" at Wikipedia
|Star Trek: Voyager
"Year of Hell"