Was Star Trek: Voyager’s Kathryn Janeway the “best” captain ever?
OOF, this is going to be a tough one. The folks at WeGotThisCoverd are making a bold claim by saying Star Trek: Voyager’s captain, Kathryn Janeway, is the “best” captain in Star Trek history. That’s a bold claim, especially since everyone who came before her has so much claim as well.
Jonathan Archer was the architect of how all captains should behave. James Kirk was the explorer that made so much of the Alpha Quadrant known. Jean-Luc Picard did more for interplanetary relations than anyone else. Benjamin Sisko not only won a war against the Klingons but got a peace treaty back in place, defeated the Dominion, and crippled the Cardassian Empire.
None of this is a dunk on Janeway, I’m merely pointing to the resumes of the challengers. Sure, some may prefer Michael Burnham or Captain Pike, but in terms of historical significance, they’re not on the level of the five series captains who came before.
Janeway isn’t Archer or Picard or any of them. If Archer was the architect, Picard the politician, Sisko the general, and Kirk the explorer, then Janeway is the survivalist. Does being the ultimate survivor make her the best captain in Star Trek history?
There is no such thing as “greatest” when it comes to Star Trek captains
Each captain has their own strengths, their own weaknesses. They all exist to serve the story of what their show was trying to be. Kirk’s show was about exploration, and not just of space but of the idea of societal values. Picard’s show was about trying to find a way to make peace with those who don’t share anything in common with you. Deep Space Nine was about the lengths a father will go to protect those he cares about. Enterprise was about how a force of good came to be and the hands it took to shape it.
Voyager was about survival, but surviving while protecting one’s ideals.
Each show served its purpose, and because of that, each captain found their footing. So no, there is no “greatest” captain ever. So Janeway can’t be it, no one can.
Now, if we’re talking about captains with the best hair…it’s either Janeway or Anson Mount’s Pike. And that’s all.