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Ensign Kim (Star Trek: Voyager) may be the most useless character of any long running TV series

ClivePwned

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,421
Cambridge, UK
I recently rewatched Voyager. There were maybe a 6-7 Harry Kim focused episodes out 172 episodes. And while none is especially bad, none is standout good.

And this is Voyager, a show that's not really inundated with classics

That said, I'd rather watch a Harry Kim episode than a Chakotay episode. I liked maybe 1 or 2 chakotay eps (the one where he was in different time periods in different parts of the ship).

Thankfully, the producers more or less gave up on every character other than Seven and The Doctor by the end.
 

Burly

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,531

Mayweather definitely had it worse. I think he had less screentime than Porthos.
Hey now, there were plenty of great Travis stories. Such as:

• That episode where you find out his family were long haul space truckers
• Uhhhh, I think he was in the mirror universe episodes?
• I'm pretty sure he had a girlfriend in the last episode
• Now that I think about it, the girlfriend was actually a spy
 

Bio

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
2,042
Denver, Colorado
I haven't watched a single episode of this series since 2005 and the only thing I remember about Kim is that he got friendzoned by every single female in the quadrant.
 

Beren

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,592
I did a watch of the whole series a couple of years ago, and started noticing that. I started keeping track of it in season 2 - specifically if Harry Kim went anywhere or did anything. Not only did he do nothing most episodes, but even in episodes where the crew had away missions, he usually didn't even leave the ship. And it got worse as the show went on.

The few times he had his own episodes, they were usually because he messed up, and almost always someone else bailed him out of trouble.

I remember that episode where Paris got promoted and Harry Kim asked "when do I get a promotion?" Janeway just smiled and rolled her eyes. The writers knew he was shit.
 

HueyFreeman

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,182
Neelix got better after Kes left but not by much
there's honestly just a LOT less of him

If you want to feel depressed, you should read up on Jennifer Lien
Yeah I did when I was reading about Harry/Kess/Seven shuffle.. feels bad man, just basically a trainwreck now

Also, rough to read about how badly Kate Mulgrew treated Jeri Ryan in the late seasons of the show because she resented her for being introduced as a sexualized character and stealing the spotlight that she felt she'd earned more credibly.
 

Unknownhero

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
1,009
Krillin would like to have a word

dude, krillin did way better than kim. Case in point, Krillin actually got married. Hell, people actually care about Krillin. Krillin's death is what actually set off goku to become a super sayian. Kim is more like Yamcha really just not as entertaining. Wait, Yamcha is better than Kim. That's fucking hilarious.
 

StarCreator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,674
Was anyone on the ship ever promoted (aside from Paris, who only got his starting field rank restored after losing it)?

EDIT: Apparently Tuvok was promoted midway through. Huh.
 
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Slayven

You probably post about me on another board.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
36,781
I like Kim, but yeah he was a terribly written character. Remember the Voyager writing team was going to give Paris a Borg boinic arm, and I am reminded they were not the best trek writers
 

Zanmato

Member
Feb 1, 2018
1,547
Colorado
Didn't they address Kim's promotion issue in an episode? Something about him definitely deserving it and would receive a promotion under normal circumstances, but because of Voyager's unique predicament, he literally can't receive a promotion.
 
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Sephzilla

Sephzilla

Herald of Stoptimus Crime
Member
Oct 25, 2017
13,411
Didn't they address Kim's promotion issue in an episode? Something about him definitely deserving it and would receive a promotion under normal circumstances, but because of Voyager's unique predicament, he literally can't receive a promotion.
I don't remember that but even then that's completely BS reasoning. IIRC the Enterprise had three commanders at one point
 

hikarutilmitt

Member
Dec 16, 2017
2,907
Man, Voyager sure was full of boring and useless people. Harry Kim should have taken another job, like Neelix. Neelix had like four different jobs at Voyager, from cook to security. What a terrible show... And I still need to rewatch it after I'm finally done with my TNG rewatch.
Kim and, at least according to this thread, Kes are the only truly useless/pointless characters. I liked Kes though, there was a nice sort of naivety to her and Jennifer Lien is cute. But she's not a very good actress. :(
Back when it aired I legit pegged her as an actress to play Terra in a FFVI live action thing, just because she and Kes are so similar.

I like Ensign Kim. He felt like a real dude who was just a fuck up in life.

Also the real Kim is dead and his place was taken by a Kim from an alternate dimension.
I will, however, contend that Kim's uselessness is his character arc in the show, brought to a very specific point about his replacement being himself minus some time. It doesn't come across well, sadly, but it's kind of a character experiment on its own, since you generally see everyone else in a ST show as somehow successful, well-liked, well-rounded, intelligent and well-adjusted. Barclay is the only character I can meaningful draw a parallel to, except that he is the flaw our viewers watched through and he still managed to be an interesting character who grew across multiple series.
 

Mengy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,025
The sad thing is I liked Harry as a potential character, it just sucked that the writers didn't do anything interesting with him. One of my favorite eps of the whole series is Timeless, the one where he and Chakotay from the future work to save Voyager in the past from crashing on that ice planet. One of the reasons its my fav ep is because Harry actually gets to do something, FINALLY. I also fondly remember that ep where the fake silicon copy crew try to save themselves from oblivion, Harry was really good in that one too and he actually ends up commanding the ship by the end, which I loved seeing.

The character and actor had a lot of potential. Voyager was so much wasted possibilities, such a shame.
 

AnotherNils

Member
Oct 27, 2017
5,234
I like Kim, but yeah he was a terribly written character. Remember the Voyager writing team was going to give Paris a Borg boinic arm, and I am reminded they were not the best trek writers
I seem to recall Ronald Moore was parachuted in from DS9, saw what was going on and noped out after a few episodes.
 
Oct 26, 2017
4,318
Ensign Kim is ironically funny.

I hate the Ash Tyler character in discovery even more.l and would argue he’s far more useless
 

HueyFreeman

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,182
I also fondly remember that ep where the fake silicon copy crew try to save themselves from oblivion, Harry was really good in that one too and he actually ends up commanding the ship by the end, which I loved seeing.
I think this is my favorite episode honestly. Just so tragic and dark and unusual for what was a mainstream series.
 

jb1234

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,151
I recently rewatched Voyager. There were maybe a 6-7 Harry Kim focused episodes out 172 episodes. And while none is especially bad, none is standout good.
Timeless. But that's really the only episode where you could tell the character and actor had more potential than the scripts were giving them.
 

GalaxyDive

Member
Oct 25, 2017
567
He is literally the same person that died except for a couple hours of memories. Janeway and Kim talk about it in the coda. Theres no real reason to being it up again.
Yeah, and technically the same exact thing happened to O'Brien, too. He died (well, was radiation poisoined and wouldn't have survived a return to "the present") and was replaced by himself from a couple hours into a future (that then never happened).
 

Slayven

You probably post about me on another board.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
36,781
Remember Worf might not be on the same universe he was born in, it might just be close enough
 

Casa

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,111
Janeway, Seven, and the Doctor are the only good main characters in the series. Others are tolerable like Tuvok and Torres, but the rest are terrible.
 

Slayven

You probably post about me on another board.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
36,781
The cultural adviser they hired for Chakotay's background turned out to be a fraud, which I'm sure compounded the issue.

I think they squandered the concept of the hybrid crew of Marquis and Starfleet trying to work together.
Yoooooo that makes so much sense, the stuff he would say sounds like some hippy nonsense.

And his relationship with Seven? dear god why?
 

davepoobond

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,817
www.squackle.com
I recently rewatched Voyager. There were maybe a 6-7 Harry Kim focused episodes out 172 episodes. And while none is especially bad, none is standout good.

And this is Voyager, a show that's not really inundated with classics

That said, I'd rather watch a Harry Kim episode than a Chakotay episode. I liked maybe 1 or 2 chakotay eps (the one where he was in different time periods in different parts of the ship).

Thankfully, the producers more or less gave up on every character other than Seven and The Doctor by the end.
any episode that was Doctor focused was good IMO

tuvok/janeway was like 50/50
 
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Sephzilla

Sephzilla

Herald of Stoptimus Crime
Member
Oct 25, 2017
13,411
The Doctor is by far and away the best member of the Voyager cast. He's too good for that show.
 

SupremeWu

Member
Dec 19, 2017
1,504
So, forget Kim, but Tom Paris was definitely that kid that got kicked from the Academy in TNG, for talking Wesley & friends into doing that dangerous airship stunt right? The one that killed a guy?
 

StarCreator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,674
So, forget Kim, but Tom Paris was definitely that kid that got kicked from the Academy in TNG, for talking Wesley & friends into doing that dangerous airship stunt right? The one that killed a guy?
In all but name and a few other details, yes, Locarno and Paris are essentially the same character.
 
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Sephzilla

Sephzilla

Herald of Stoptimus Crime
Member
Oct 25, 2017
13,411
So, forget Kim, but Tom Paris was definitely that kid that got kicked from the Academy in TNG, for talking Wesley & friends into doing that dangerous airship stunt right? The one that killed a guy?
its implied but not necessarily the same character from what I remember.
They're two different characters, technically. They have different names.

They were originally supposed to be the same character but they changed his name to Tom Paris to avoid having to pay royalties to the TNG writer who created him.
 

Rassilon

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,149
UK
oooooo that makes so much sense, the stuff he would say sounds like some hippy nonsense.

And his relationship with Seven? dear god why?
Yeah this guy:


If I recall correctly the writing staff on Voyager should have known he was a charlatan, as he had been repeatedly exposed since the 80s.
I think they started receiving complaints at some point so they toned down the references to that part of the character later in the series, it was a big embarrassment at the time, considering Star Trek has always tried to project a progressive image.
 
Oct 25, 2017
3,880
It was supposed to be but they didn't want to pay the writers who created him or something so they just changed the name.
 

Calles

Member
Nov 1, 2017
4,066
Pretty sure he was the only actor who never directed an episode too, he wanted to do so, they said no. And there IS a reason he was treated as he was in show.

Dude was totally blazed most of the time. He did not have a good reputation during the show. Now since then he seems to have gotten his act together, if you ever go to a con and he's hosting he does a great job. Saw this at a con where Roxan Dawson aka B'Elanna Torres appeared and said it was the first time they had seen one another since the show.
 

Slayven

You probably post about me on another board.
Moderator
Oct 25, 2017
36,781
They're two different characters, technically. They have different names.

They were originally supposed to be the same character but they changed his name to Tom Paris to avoid having to pay royalties to the TNG writer who created him.
I never stood how that worked? Like wouldn't paramount own the character?
 

N. Tyranno

Member
Nov 6, 2017
1,431
This is the first time I've heard that the guy was constantly stoned. What I'd heard was that he clashed with Berman and Braga early on, and the latter decided his character would never be promoted or advanced in any way.