Altered States
How'd We Do it?
Synopsis A classic "trading places" story. While scanning a planet for life and other data, a mysterious energy pulse hits Voyager causing Janeway to fall into the Doctor making him human and Janeway the Hologram.
Major Character and Plot Points The Doctor's sickness. Janeway's loss of intuitive feelingss and the Doctor's gaining of them. Fear of dealing with something too big for them to handle. The condition of non-corporeal life forms.
Jerry's Comments We had the highest of hopes for this one, but it was unfortunately shot down. The concept was thought to be too much of a convenience, making another character into a hologram. It seems like many of the stories told have a lot of convenience involved in them, but we weren't exactly in a position to argue. Convenient or not, I think the concept is a real knock-out regardless. It would have been very interesting to see the Doctor in command and Janeway in a pure research environment. As a scientist, I think she would actually embrace living in the Doctor's more theoretical world. Having the Doctor have to deal with the sudden onslaught of facial hair, body maintenance and hunger would be interesting as well. This did happen to Q once before, but that wasn't an obstacle to the pitch.

I think the combination of the aliens being trapped in Voyager's computer and the Doctor, Janeway switch-a-roo would have made for a great episode. I thought it had it all, even after months of reflection, I still do. The rejection for Altered States was the most disappointing of all the decisions to pass because it seemed all there. Jerry even told us that it had all the dramatic elements of a Star Trek episode. I'm toying around with just writing this for my portfolio because I think it's so innovative and cool.

The Pitch as Delivered Voyager comes across a deserted planet with hundreds of cities kept running by automaton machines. Fearing rumors of a powerful race nearby they access the planet's holographic data banks hoping to gather info.
The attempt is made from sickbay to utilize the Doctor's full potential. They find a mother load of useful information that must be uploaded in large chunks that causes some systems to shut down. While up-loading, adata pulse strikes Voyager. The pulse causes Janeway to fall into the Doctor, they both complain of discomfort a "static shock" of striking each other.

As more systems shut down, the attempt is aborted but only the Doctor's voice is rcognized by the computer. When Janeway tries to leave sickbay though, she can't due to a force field. They then deduce that the Captain has become a hologram and the Doctor is now flesh and blood.

Captain cannot leave sickbay with a holo-emitter due to (tech reason). The computer only accepts command codes from The Doctor and that he is effectively in charge of the ship. To Chockotay's concern, Janeway puts the Doctor in charge. This is an early example of the Captain losing her intuitive feelings.

Unable to leave the system, the crew begins to investigate what happened. They notice an activity on the planet and fear that they've woken someone up. The large amount of uploaded data slows down the computer, slowing their investigation They are afraid to erase the data, as it may still hold the clues to what is going on with the Captain. They can't open the files either.

The Doctor begins to have troubles with command, giving orders and coordinating the investigation. He comes to sick-bay to speak with the Captain. Janeway and The Doctor talk about command and all of it's dilemmas. The Doctor notices that he's having actual feelings now that he never experienced before, like anxiety and fear. Janeway seems to be losing her ability to follow hunches or to think intuitively. Just as they finish their conversation, the doctor also throws in that he's a flesh and blood human now too. Just then the Doctor sneezes. Concerned, he gives himself an medical examination and finds out he has barely an immune system. He realizes that if this mess isn't cleared up, he could die of the slightest infection. As the Doctor is about to leave, Janeway shuts herself down. (end Janeway Program one)

The Doctor begins to feel hungry as well and has do deal with such things as eating, sleeping and shaving. Janeway is actually enjoying her time as a hologram to an extent; she's not getting tired and not having to sleep. The Doctor is also becoming more aware of intuitive feelings and hunches, while at the same time, Janeway is loosing her gut feelings and is looking at things through pure logic.

The Doctor, wrestling with his new command dilemmas, goes about the ship wrapped in a blanket and popping penicillin because he is getting sicker. He asks Neelix for any kind of therapeutic cures he may have. Neelix has him try a gamut of bizarre, bad tasting and weird cures.

The investigation of the planet below for a possible answer continues. The crew, in a sort of desperation, decides to erase the data that was uploaded to hopefully speed up the processing speed of the computer. When they try, the computer powers down many of the systems on the ship and they must stop.

In sickbay, an alien image appears to Janeway and the Doctor. He informs them that Voyager must go to the surface and be scanned at a tower. She asks if what happened to her can be reversed and he explains, "surely" if what he asks is done but does not explain why it must happen.

The Doctor and Janeway have a disagreement over the course of action, The Doctor suggest going to the surface and Janeway will hear nothing of it, especially after what's already happened. The crew is Divided, The Doctor cannot describe it, but he feels what must be a "gut feeling." Janeway, who seems to have lost her ability to follow a hunch, only looks at the facts.

As the crew argues, the Doctor, who's by this time very sick, lowers the ship to the surface and to the area instructed by the alien. The crew discovers that the feared aliens have evolved into the disembodied guardians of the world below and that the data chunks they were uploading were actually the aliens themselves! The uploaded aliens peacefully leave the ship, but not without leaving a map of a safe route through their immediate path.

After the aliens pass out of voyager, the Doctor and Janeway change places again and discuss their unusual experiences before the episode ends.

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