How'd We Do it?
|Synopsis||An energy being-stowaway on Voyager turns
out to be a rambunctious adolescent who may not be mature enough to handle
the responsibilities of life on Voyager - and may pose a deadly threat.
|Major Character and Plot Points||Tom coming of age. Voyager. Parenting. Possible
dangers of going through sub-space. Tom and B'Lanna teasers.
|Jerry's Comments||This was my first ever try at a Voyager
pitch. Tom Paris hadn't been getting a lot of stories thrown his way, so
I figured one about him would prick up some ears. This story gave him a
great opportunity to become a role model. (I think he's gotten away from
his checkered past a little too easily.) It was really a catalyst for Tom,
but Jerry saw it as having too much focus on the Plasma Being, who incidentally,
never got named.
I think the option of taking on new crew members is one that would be fun to be explored on Voyager. Kes and Neelix were not originals, neither were the Maquis elements. There are lots of people to bump into so far from home who may be able to help, possibly becoming allies, on a long term journey. Eventually certain friends, and enemies, would pass on. This would give the show a transient nature, which logically it should have. The Kazon have fizzled out as transient villains, which was cool. There shouldn't be a long term threat to the crew, as they are passing through a lot of space.
Jerry was also hesitant to go with any more stories dealing with adolescent boys. Since she didn't suggest going with an adolescent girl, I think the Voyager producers are shying away from shows about growing pains, which is essentially what Runaway would have been about. The plasma being was supposed to be Tom a few years past, kind of like looking into an old yearbook. The story also had a lot to say about Starfleet standards and levels of professionalism.
|The Pitch as Delivered||An experiment to bridge through the lower subspace
frequencies space fails. Tom and B'Lanna find an odd plasma field on the
hull and confine it sickbay.
The plasma turns out to be a life form and escapes from the field and takes human form. The "Plasma Man" moves through the ship and peacefully comes to rest in the warp core. Tom coaxes the being out of the warp core and it is confined in the brig.
It later tells Tom telling that he is a youngster who "hitched a ride" on Voyager as it passed through his dimension and he is looking for adventure.
B'Lanna, lobbies to let Plasma Man stay, as he could be of definite benefit to her "Bridging" theory. Tom's concerned he'll get bored. Tuvok's concerned his "parents" may come looking for him. Neelix says that he and Kes were not an original members of the crew. Chockotay says the same thing, but with a different connotation. He is allowed to stay, as long as he promises to help B'Lanna and Tom keeps an eye on him. Plasma man takes the form of a young security officer. Tom tells him to get his own form, which he does.
Plasma Man wants to find out everything about being human and asks Tom about girls. He later takes Harry's form and makes a pass at a girl. His touch shock's her and slightly discourages Plasma Man.
Several plasma beings bored Voyager, easily trapping Janeway and others on the bridge. The beings, Plasma Man's parents, council Janeway about their rambunctious son. They love him but he must leave the swarm sometime. Plasma Man wants to take the journey home and join Starfleet. Janeway allows him to stay and the parents apologize. The father privately warns Plasma Man to protect these people from the "Dweller."
Plasma Man stays. He begins to realize he is an outsider and continues "Bridging" experiments with B'Lanna. He can't let it work though, as the "Dweller" cannot be woken.
As the experiment begins Plasma Man disappears. The field is unstable. Plasma Man is found dispersed in the Warp Core which ruins the experiment. He is injured and lays in sickbay as loose energy. When he's better, he tries to explain the danger of waking the Dweller to Janeway, but she won't hear of it. She kicks him off the ship as soon as he's able.
Tom tries to understand him, but realizes that Janeway was right. This crew is professional, a selfish Maverick can not be allowed to put everyone in danger. Plasma Man walks through the wall and out of our lives forever and Tom realizes that he's not a bad role model after all.