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Janeway's Not Crazy
     But She is Schizophrenic

By: Mildred L. Perkins 

Comments? mlperkin@indiana.edu

Okay, so schizophrenia doesn't have anything to do with mulitple
personality, but a lot of people still think it does - hence, the title.
True schizophrenia is the result of physical problems in the brain,
and it does have basic symptoms. Shall we evaluate the good captain's
mental health on a strictly UNprofessional basis?

Symptom Supporting Behavior

Delusional Beliefs: That she's in love with a hologram?
Hallucinations: Thinking Chakotay is sexy.
Confused thinking and/or Speech: Telling Seven to go out and date,
  rather than asking her out herself.
Flattened Emotions: Saying, "I appreciate your insights" after
  Seven pours out her heart.  Sheesh.
Bizarre Behavior: Still living alone two years after Seven's
Social Withdrawal: When was the last time we saw her
  schmoozing Seven at a party?

Seriously, though, if we wanted to use the term schizophrenia to mean
multiple personality, a case could be made for that as well and it has
nothing to do with the character Captain Kathryn Janeway except for how
she is involved with the executive producer of Star Trek: Voyager.  Has
anyone noticed that the Janeway character has changed quite a bit, and
rather suddenly, in the last few years?  Yes?  I thought as much.  And
there has been a good deal of bitching about how freaky and uneven the
captain has been lately, especially from her lesbian fans (aka The
Faction).  Has no one put two and two together to get Brannon Braga?

For the first few years, Janeway was the product of Jeri Taylor's Mary Sue Complex.  There was never any doubt about that, and she was always the first to admit it.  Janeway and Taylor have a lot in common, not the least of which is they're both Hoosiers.  The Janeway of the first seasons was warm and approachable with her crew.  She was feminine but tough, even when life became more than a normal person could ever hope to handle.  In other words, she was the type of woman a lesbian could get behind.

In the second season episode "Persistence of Vision", Janeway gets pulled
in a million different directions by a crew who relies heavily on their
captain.  When she finally snaps at B'Lanna and Harry, it sounds like a
mother berating her children.  And when the doctor uses that heated moment to pull rank and order Janeway to relax, she doesn't fight him over it but goes to smooch her first holo-honey.  At the end of the episode she's in the mess hall, ruminating on life and sipping her tea.  B'Lanna shows up and they have a heartfelt conversation on 'What Just Happened'. 

This is a woman captain, produced by a woman, with every intent of her
being a woman.  Love her or hate her, she was an understandable, level
(read: no development) character.

But then Brannon Braga became the producer of Voyager.

It has been my observation that women and men are different.  This goes
beyond mere physical differences, which I won't go into here, to emotional
and behavioral differences.  Janeway's behavior has changed drastically
over the course of the series, and it doesn't have anything to do with the
compilation of stress or her guilt about stranding her crew so far from
home.  It has nothing at all to do with character development.  Since when
have we seen such a thing on Voyager?  Janeway suffers from a sudden
change in gender identification - in essence, a split personality.

Note the differences in the "new and improved" Janeway of the Braga
era in, say, "Equinox II".  Now we have an executive producer with his own
Mary Sue Complex, but he has a problem:  the captain is a woman.  He must fit this feminine woman's character to his own masculine fantasies and for some strange reason, it's not a good fit.  (<--- warning: sarcasm)  Oh, for a Kirk or a Sisko for poor Brannon.  Instead, he tries to make do with what he's got.

What does his Janeway do when confronted with Ransom's ugly secret?  She gets "damned mad" and chases after him with every resource at hand,
irregardless of the cost to Voyager and her crew.  After capturing
Ransom's crewman Lessing does she reason with him?  Or does she play Good Cop Bad Cop, truss him up in a dangerous place, yank him around and
threaten to murder him if he doesn't talk?

At the end of the episode, Janeway stands alone on the bridge, thinking
about how screwed up she is...how much like the other *guy* (Ransom) she
has become.

This is a woman character, produced by a man, who can't quite balance his
needs with the needs of the character.  Love her or hate her, you have to
admit she's got problems.

In further support of my theory, I offer the sudden decrease in screen
time for Janeway with Seven.  This happened about the time Braga and Ryan began dating, didn't it?  I have a terrible suspicion he has trouble
sharing his toys.

How much more prone to _using_ someone or something for sexual
gratification is the average guy than the average woman?  A guy will hire
a prostitute, or rent a video, or ask his wife to dress up in a sexy
outfit - or even just want a "quickie" from her.  A woman might use a
vibrator or some such, but I would venture to guess that happens a lot
less often than a guy uses a "toy".

The "Persistence of Vision" Janeway is bussed by her holo-honey, but she doesn't swoon and fall in love.  She looks shaken (and stirred, sexually),
but that's as far as it gets.  Her ultimate fantasy turns out to be her
fiancee and their love.  The Janeway of the post-Braga episode "Fair
Haven" gets kissed by her holo-honey and spends the next three days
"fixing" him to her specifications while getting her ashes hauled.  Which
is the more masculine manifestation for Our Girl Janeway?

The problem for us is that Braga appears to be oddly selfish.  His Mary
Sue character develops a sudden hot chemistry with Seven and that's
okay while he's just watching (we all know how much guys like to
watch).  But then he starts dating the actress portraying Seven and
suddenly we fans get precious little screen time between Mary Sue and
Seven.  We all assume it's because TPTB are so homophobic that they
back away from even the hint of Something Going On between the two women characters when it's actually another example of Captain Janeway's "Schizophrenia".