Should Tuvix have been mentioned on Voyager again?
Tuvix was a controversial subject when the episode aired on Season two of Star Trek: Voyager, and many fans have yet to let go of the subject. According to Polygon writer Jordan Hoffman, who wrote a lengthy essay entitled “Tuvix Will Never Die”, memes that show Captain Janeway as a murderer are still rampant as are the discussions about the one-time appearance of the joined personas of Tuvox and Neelix.
One thing that Hoffman mentions is that people still wish there’d been some type of reference to Tuvix later in the series. Instead, he is forgotten, and the crew moves on. Captain Janeway moves on from one of the most difficult decisions she had to make in her entire career, a decision that clearly affected her when she had to make it. And one that should have changed her, at least in some small way. But there is no outward acknowledgment of that change in later episodes.
Neelix and Tuvok don’t discuss Tuvix, either
Another excellent point made in Hoffman’s essay is that Tuvok and Neelix don’t even acknowledge that they shared the same consciousness at one time. One would think that Neelix, with his exuberant personality, would have wanted to talk to Tuvok about what he’d learned from sharing a mind with the Vulcan. It’s understandable why Tuvok would want to avoid the entire conversation, but not Neelix.
While originally, the episode’s writer was going to have Tuvix be willing to sacrifice himself so that Janeway wouldn’t have to make that decision. But Michael Piller pushed for more, telling the writer to make Tuvix fight for his life. Piller couldn’t have known the effect his decision would have on Star Trek fans even twenty-five years later.
Michael McMahan, the creator of Star Trek: Lower Decks, said there was a way to save Tuvix because it was sci-fi, and you can do whatever you want with sci-fi, like manipulating the transporter to make a clone of Tuvix much like the transporter did with Will Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation. Perhaps because that had already been done before, the production team didn’t want an episode so similar.
The producers could certainly have saved Tuvix’s life if they’d wanted to, but they chose to go in the direction that set the fan community alight. And then they dropped it. With many fans referring to the captain of the Voyager as a murderer, it might have been worth a few seconds of air time to bring the subject up again.
What do you think? Was it best that Tuvix was forgotten? Or should he have been referenced in the series before it ended?