The Trouble with Transporters, November 20, 2022, STS Ep 16

Log owner:

Victoria Radbourne

November 20, 2022

Captain’s Log, Stardate 11324.5

This week, Star Trek Sundays discussed The Trouble with Transporters in podcast episode 16. Not only did the discussion become a wee bit heated, but we coined the term RomTrek™ for Romantic Star Trek episodes. 

First Officer T curated the following episodes for us to discuss for this episode: 

  1. Tuvix, Voyager, S02, Ep24, First aired: 6 May 1996
  2. Realm of Fear, The Next Generation, S06, Ep02, First aired: 28 September 1992
  3. Second Chances, The Next Generation, S06, Ep24, First aired: 24 May 1993

The topic of The Trouble With Transporters is a play on the Trouble with Tribbles title from the original series. And, indeed, we witnessed some troubles with transporters in these episodes. 

The episode Tuvix from Voyager challenged us to question what it means to be a unique individual, and what rights they should be afforded.

In this episode, CaptainJaneway acts unilaterally to murder Tuvix in the name of saving Tuvok and Nelix. We asked the crew: Do you think she made the right choice? Do all lives matter, or only the original ones from which the hybrids are made? And the answers were diverse and provided a heated discussion, which continued into another discussion in a different club on the Clubhouse app after the podcast recording. And I suspect we’ll continue to have this discussion through the next few weeks and into Season 2.

I’m definitely on the side of Tuvix. And I know there are those who support Captain Janeway’s decision. So, for those who think that Janeway was right I ask you… If the “cure” for the accident was found two years later, would you still agree with Janeway? How long would Tuvix have to be Tuvix before you changed your mind? When is Tuvix a person? 

In Realm of Fear, Barkley faces his fear of transporter technology, only to learn his fears are well founded when he learns there are monsters hiding in the transporter beam, who turn out to be crew members. T chose this episode because the idea of something being trapped inside the transporter beam is more than unusual, with the technology usually being safe to use. He thought it was an interesting example of how these types of technologies can end up with unexpected results.

We asked the crew: If we had transporter technology, would you be fearful of it? Or would you embrace it for traveling everywhere? These answers were very interesting and included talk about the soul and what makes us really us. 

And now we come to RomTrek. Romance in Star Trek grabs me like nothing else. I really enjoy it and the tension it can prompt in me. 

In Second Chances, the crew of the Enterprise encounter a copy of Riker accidentally made by a transporter accident 8 years ago who was stranded on an abandoned planet. It inverts the classic question about what happens when the original body is destroyed, and asks the question, what if the original body isn’t destroyed, and continues on as a separate person.

The crew discussed whether or not they would be at odds with their clone or best friends with the clone. This led to discussion regarding how we treat ourselves versus how we treat others and having compassion for oneself. 

And I wondered this… Would you date a clone of a former or lost love? 

Star Trek Sundays Episode 16 Crew: 


First Officer T, Lt. Ryan, Lt. Shawn, Lt. Kristi, Lt. Gella, Lt. Rachael, Lt. Joanna, Lt. Steve, Lt. io, Ensign Dave


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