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Recap / Star Trek Voyager S 4 E 19 The Omega Directive

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Sensors have detected the Omega phenomenon within one-point-two light years of this vessel.

Implement the Omega Directive immediately.

All other priorities have been rescinded.
Voyager detects the presence of the Omega particle. If there is an Omega particle explosion, faster than light travel would become impossible in the region of space where the explosion occurs. That would forbid the ship from ever making it home to Earth. Therefore Omega must be destroyed.

The Omega particle is known to Starfleet captains and admirals, but not to any lower ranking officers or enlisted. Since Seven of Nine was in the Borg collective, which has assimilated Starfleet officers like Captain Picard, Seven knows about the Omega directive. She also knows that the Borg revere the Omega particle for its perfection.

Back in the Alpha Quadrant, Janeway would have help dealing with Omega. In the Delta Quadrant, she has her crew, but still feeling guilty about stranding them on the other side of the galaxy, decides she and Seven should go at it alone, just the two of them.

Contains examples of:

  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Seven's voice cracks as she asks Chakotay to authorize her plan to stabilize the Omega molecule, adding "Please" despite showing No Social Skills throughout the episode.
  • Alien Non-Interference Clause: Explicitly overruled in matters of Omega.
  • Artistic License Space: The alien moon is said to have an atmosphere eleven thousand kilometers thick. For context, the entire planet Earth has a diameter of 12,800 kilometers.
  • The "Be Careful!" Speech: Janeway demands a hypospray of Fantastic Radiation Shielding, and curtly overrules the Doctor when he objects that it's dangerous. However the Doctor earns a Gooey Look when he gives this trope.
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Omega particles, which could be used to power civilizations, had to be destroyed; but for a few precious seconds, Seven glimpsed perfection.
  • Butt-Monkey: Seven engages in her usual Harry-bashing.
  • Blunt "No":
    Harry: Wanna know what I think?
    Tuvok: No.
  • Call-Back:
  • Cargo Cult: The Borg have one for Omega, considering it the epitome of perfection to which they strive.
  • Classified Information: Everything about the Omega particle is restricted to Starfleet Captains and Flagship Officers. The crew are understandably annoyed at this, given that they're effectively told to do tasks without being able to use their Gadgeteer Genius skills. Seven is brought into Janeway's confidence, as she already knows about the Omega Directive from Starfleet captains who've been assimilated by the Borg. However these rules have been written for the Alpha Quadrant, where a Starfleet captain would call in a specialized Starfleet team to deal with the crisis. Janeway is forced to include her senior staff when the crisis turns out to be bigger than she expected.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Of a sort; Omega's true nature can't be known, and it's responsible for much destruction and loss of life, including the potential to destroy subspace - the medium of the universe which enables warp-speed. Its very existence is considered the Godzilla Threshold by Starfleet. On seeing its creation, Seven even has the sense that it may be self-aware enough to study her in response.
  • Expy: In-universe, Seven creates one of a Hive Mind to build and maintain the resonance chamber, even demoting Harry when he refuses to play along!
  • Famous, Famous, Fictional: When discussing the potential of the Omega Particle, Janeway mentions Einstein and the atom bomb, (famous) and Carol Marcus and the Genesis Device (fictional).
  • For Science!: Averted; Omega is so dangerous that Starfleet wants it destroyed.
    Alien scientist: Small minded creatures! You destroy whatever you don't understand!
  • Godzilla Threshold:
    • Starfleet procedure goes out the airlock when Omega is involved. Captain Janeway is set on destroying a dangerous phenomenon instead of investigating it, keeps the crew out of the loop, and the Prime Directive is superseded.
    • Janeway eventually letting the senior crew know what's up. Seven is already aware of Omega and the Omega Directive because the Borg assimilated knowledge of it, likely from Picard and the victims of Wolf 359, and Voyager is stranded several light millennia away from Federation space and has no access to Starfleet resources, forcing Janeway to throw together an Omega Directive squadron from her own personnel.
    • Just as Janeway has been authorized to destroy Omega at all costs, Seven says that Borg drones have been instructed to assimilate it at all costs.
    • The species developing the Omega molecule. Their resources are drained and they don't have warp technology, so can't get outside help.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Along with Marcus, Janeway thinks of Einstein and the atomic bomb when comparing peoples' reactions to the revolutionary devices which they helped create, but could be (and were) perverted into deadly weapons; Janeway can understand how they must have felt, and Ketteract must have felt the same about Omega shortly before the end of his life.
  • Headbutting Heroes: Averted during the final Janeway/Seven confrontation in Cargo Bay 2. Unlike in "Prey", this time Seven does understand Janeway's perspective, and steps aside to allow the captain to destroy Omega.
  • Holy Grail: Omega is actually said to be this for the Borg.
  • Hyperspeed Escape: When pursued by sublight spacecraft, Voyager can't flee because of the damage from the Omega explosion. They escape the region Just in Time to detonate the Omega particles.
  • If I Do Not Return: And for once this trope is meant to be taken seriously, as Chakotay would have only ten seconds to pull a Hyperspeed Escape before Omega created a No Warping Zone, if Janeway's shuttle mission didn't succeed.
  • In Harm's Way: Janeway would rather go on a Suicide Mission than put Voyager's crew at risk. Fortunately Chakotay convinces her to at least bring the senior officers into the problem.
  • Insufferable Genius: Seven effortlessly completes the kal-toh game Harry has been working on all night, saying it's "elementary spatial harmonics". Kim asks what Seven needs the rest of them for, only to get a Meaningful Look from Seven. "Forget I asked."
    Seven of Nine: The modifications require several complex calculations. Assist me.
    Captain Janeway: I guess I will.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Seven plans to work, eat, exercise, and read A Christmas Carol.
  • Lock Down: The moment the sensors detect the Omega shockwave Voyager automatically drops out of warp with all sensors shut down, and the computer can only be accessed by the captain.
  • Mad Lib Thriller Title: Going by the name, you'd be forgiven if you thought this was a Robert Ludlum joint.
  • The Main Characters Do Everything: Janeway and her senior staff are the ones most involved in destroying Omega. This is justified for two reasons: the extreme need-to-know nature of the Omega Directive (which Janeway is already bending to a serious degree) and the fact that Voyager is the only ship around to deal with things. Janeway even explains that if this were in the Alpha Quadrant, Starfleet would be sending a specialized team to destroy Omega.
  • Male Gaze: The camera drops to show Seven's ass as she's walking away from the audience while in the cargo bay.
  • A Million is a Statistic: The Borg consider 600,000 dead drones an irrelevance in their quest to stabilize the Omega particle. They also assimilated a number of primitive species just to follow the chain of evidence to Omega.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Nothing good will come from something named after the last and most ominous letter in the Greek alphabet.
  • No Man Should Have This Power: How Starfleet feels about Omega.
  • No Social Skills: Lampshaded by the Doctor when Seven tries to barge into his Sickbay and interrogate a barely conscious patient. He promises to teach the subject on her next course.
  • No Warping Zone: A single Omega particle detonation can destroy subspace across an entire sector, making warp travel impossible throughout said sector (which has already occurred in the Lantaru Sector), and a large enough chain reaction can take out an entire quadrant. This is why Starfleet is freakin' scared of Omega and wants it destroyed at any cost.
  • Oh, Crap!: Many times throughout the episode, especially as the molecule count goes from one to dozens to hundreds to over two hundred million.
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: Former science officer Janeway wants Omega destroyed without bothering to study it. Seven's desire to gaze upon it is compared to religious fervor.
  • Outgrown Such Silly Superstitions: Averted; Seven dismisses speculation by primitive species (including human) about the nature of the Omega particle, yet the Borg quest also has religious overtones. She appeals to Chakotay's beliefs when begging him to let her stabilize the molecule, and at the end of the episode compares her gazing on a fully formed Omega molecule to a religious epiphany.
    Seven: This simulation contains many religious components. I was studying them to help me understand what I saw in Cargo Bay two.
    Janeway: The data isn't clear why Omega stabilized in the last few seconds. The chances are it was simply a chaotic anomaly, nothing more.
    Seven: For three point two seconds I saw perfection. When Omega stabilized, I felt a curious sensation. As I was watching it, it seemed to be watching me. The Borg have assimilated many species with mythologies to explain such moments of clarity. I've always dismissed them as trivial. Perhaps I was wrong.
    Janeway: If I didn't know you better, I'd say you just had your first spiritual experience.
  • Properly Paranoid: Omega is Classified Information because of the risk that the information will be taken by force, which has already happened with the Borg.
  • Rule of Funny: The work 'collective' Seven forms on Voyager. Giving everyone Borg designations would actually be less efficient, but sets up a gag involving Harry Kim getting demoted.
  • Rule of Symbolism: In-Universe when Seven studies the religious symbols in the Da Vinci holo-program, in order to come to grips with the experience of witnessing perfection.
  • Schizo Tech: The species that was working on Omega have fast sublight ships with weapons that are a legitimate threat to Voyager...and are a pre-warp civilization. Justified in that their solar system has an ample supply of the rare substance required to synthesize Omega, and their local subspace may have been damaged, producing false negatives in warp tests, well before the Voyager crew showed up.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: Convinced of the necessity, Janeway violates orders and tells only her senior staff about the Omega particle in detail.
  • Solo Mission Becomes Group Mission: Janeway would go by herself to take care of the Omega particle, but since Seven of Nine already knows about Omega, she has no choice but take the former Borg drone along for the ride. However, the rest of the senior officers learn of Janeway's plans and insist on helping her.
  • Tempting Fate: Janeway being so impressed with Seven's containment device that she leaves the Omega project (which is meant to destroy the particle) in her hands. Fortunately Seven proves loyal, despite admitting that she had every reason and opportunity to disobey orders.
    • The species who produced the Omega molecules are doing this too, as if the Borg find any evidence whatsoever about them discovering Omega, their civilization is going to be assimilated down to the last person.
  • These Are Things Man Was Not Meant to Know:
    Janeway: The Final Frontier has some boundaries that are not meant to be crossed.
  • Title Drop:
    Computer: Implement the Omega Directive immediately. All other priorities rescinded.
  • Ultimate Life Form: The Omega molecule is infinitely complex, yet harmonious; representing true perfection. It's speculated that a natural particle created the universe with the Big Bang, making it literally God.
  • Unobtanium: Boronite ore, the material needed to synthesize the Omega molecule, is suggested to be very rare — the Borg only had enough to synthesize one unstable molecule within their vast territory.
  • Visual Gag: Chakotay says "Try to shake them off" just before a Screen Shake.
  • Weapon of Mass Destruction: The ability for the Omega molecule to become this is lampshaded, though the emphasis is on the accidental damage it might cause by destroying subspace across half the Quadrant, throwing all spacefaring civilizations into a pre-warp state. Kim and Tuvok are shown loading a gravimetric charge into a torpedo, which Kim claims is powerful enough to destroy a small planet. Sure enough a moon is being used for Omega experiments, and at one point Tuvok suggests using the torpedo to destroy the experimental chamber, which presumably would have destroyed the moon as well.
  • With or Without You:
    Janeway: I'm going to neutralize this threat, Seven, with or without your help.
  • With Us or Against Us: Janeway gives Seven a choice between helping her destroy Omega or being confined to quarters. Seven is not intimidated, but cooperates because she desires to see Omega for herself.
  • You Are Number 6: When Seven of Nine is put in charge of building the containment unit for the Omega molecules, she assigns Borg-style designations to each group member to "improve efficiency".
    Seven of Nine: Six of Ten, this is not your assignment.
    Harry Kim: Please, stop calling me that.
    Seven of Nine: You are compromising our productivity. I am reassigning you to chamber maintenance. Your new designation is Two of Ten.
    Harry Kim: Wait a minute, you're demoting me? Since when did the Borg pull rank?
    Seven of Nine: It's Starfleet Protocol I adapted. I find it most useful.
  • You Talk Too Much!: When planning her daily activities, Seven allocates 3 hours, 20 minutes for a task she's working on with Ensign Kim, plus an additional 17 minutes for his "conversational digressions". Later Captain Janeway cuts off Kim when he asks who developed the Weapon of Mass Destruction they're planting into a photon torpedo. "Mr Kim, you ask too many questions." The moment she leaves, Kim engages in rampant speculation on what the captain is up to.


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