Long before the finale of Star Trek: Voyager aired, writers had bandied ideas around about how to bring the lost ship home and how to build the drama toward its final descent to Earth. Not all of the ideas were based upon an actual arrival. In fact, one was a really disturbing twist that involved a fake homecoming.
According to producer Jeri Taylor, in one scenario, Voyager is arriving home (or so everyone thinks). Celebrations are going on, and loved ones are being reunited. And it turns out to be an invasion. This might have been reminiscent of Tuvok’s holonovel in the third season episode, Worst Case Scenario which set up a mutiny by the Maquis. The first part of the episode came across as very believable and had viewers wondering what was going on.
One of Voyager’s writers, Joe Menosky, said that Brannon Braga had images in mind that would have had a scene opening with Voyager above Earth. There would have been fireworks, and everyone is gathering for reunions. Then there’s this emotional scene with plenty of tears between Captain Janeway and her fiancé, Mark when they reunited. And just as emotions are running high for everyone, Janeway kisses Mark then immediately snaps his neck.
What? That would have been a scene opener that would have never been forgotten. And it would have been more than a little disturbing. Supposedly, after Janeway kills Mark, thousands of duplicate Voyagers start heading toward Earth. No one knows how the ships have been created or even why. But it doesn’t look good for Earth.
This episode (or episodes) would have packed a powerful punch, but writers finally decided that airing such a story would take away too much from Voyager’s actual homecoming. Knowing this was on the writers’ table and it didn’t get its shot is a little disappointing. I can only imagine what the actors could have done with this jaw-dropping episode.