Berman and Braga Return, Prologue: “The Delta Quadrant Incident”
Written by Jason Reichstetter
Published August 14, 2001
Brannon Braga and Rick Berman are sitting down at a typewriter, churning out a script for Voyager’s fourth season. Also in the room is Kenneth Biller, who is observing the events transpiring. Frank Wilder, the Paramount janitor, is busy sweeping up some dirt from the floor.
Berman: Okay, Brannon. In this scene, I think it would be neat if Voyager ran into a space station, where Species 8472 has a rendering of Starfleet Headquarters set up, training for an invasion of the Alpha Quadrant.
Braga: Sounds kewl. Can I put some explosions in there, too?
Berman: Not just yet. You are too impatient. We will get to the explosions all in good time.
Wilder: Begging your pardon, Mr. Berman...
Berman: (Sighs) What is it, Mr. Wilder?
Wilder: I know I’ve only worked here a week and a half, and that I don’t know that much about television production, but I am a big Star Trek fan and watch it religiously, but I was wondering why Species 8472 would just happen to have a space station set up in the Delta Quadrant, after they already went back to fluidic space at the end of Scorpion Part II. Also, why would they have a recreation of Starfleet Command if they’ve never been to Earth, and finally, wouldn’t they try to make some kind of an attempt to keep the training grounds secret?
Berman: (Eyes glowing red) Mr. Wilder?
Wilder: Yes, sir?
Berman: You’re fired.
Wilder: Okay. (Wilder hangs his head in shame and walks out the room)
Berman: Throw it into the script, but also have a member of Species 8472 be on Voyager disguised as one of Voyager’s crewmembers.
Braga: Cool beans.
Biller: Uh, Mr. Berman?
Berman: What is it, Biller?
Biller: How exactly does this member of Species 8472 get on Voyager, and how does the crew not notice a new crewman on board? And how does the 8472 even know how to speak English to interact with the crew?
Braga: (Laughs heartily) This is Star Trek. Every alien, no matter how far out they are, or whatever dimension they live in, speaks English.
Berman: Yeah, dumbass. And keep your thoughts to yourself. When I want your opinion, I’ll give it to you. (Berman and Braga start laughing and Biller’s face turns red)
MEANWHILE, IN ANOTHER DIMENSION, 70,000 LIGHT YEARS FROM EARTH...
In this dimension, TV shows are a reality. Anything that is written for a TV show automatically becomes so in this dimension. It isn’t unusual on Earth to see Frasier Crane and Homer Simpson walking down the street carrying on a conversation while President Bartlett runs the country from the White House. But, in the Delta Quadrant, aboard a lone starship, something strange is brewing. Something strange, indeed.
Kim: Captain, something is materializing in front of us. It’s a space station.
Janeway: On screen.
(On the viewscreen, a space station appears)
Janeway: Why didn’t we pick this up on long range sensors before?
Kim: Because it wasn’t there before.
Janeway: You mean to tell me this space station came out of nowhere.
Chakotay: It isn’t that uncommon. Shuttlecraft just appear out of nowhere. Over the past four years we’ve gained extra crewmembers that we never had when we left the Alpha Quadrant. Hell, we’ve even had some disappear without a trace.
Tuvok: He is correct, Captain. My security team has been unsuccessful in locating Ensign Wildman and Lieutenant Carey.
Janeway: I thought I hadn’t seen them in a while. Carry on your search.
Tuvok: Aye, Captain.
Janeway: Mr. Kim, have you been able to scan the station?
Kim: Yes, Captain. It’s... (dramatic pause) Starfleet Headquarters!
Rick Berman and Brannon Braga are still churning out script upon script.
Berman: And in the next episode, I want you to do a scene set in the airponics bay which is in cargo bay one, and the episode after that, I want there to be a hostage situation in the shuttlebay, which is cargo bay one.
Braga: Okay. Churning out script now.
Kim: Captain! All the vegetables in the airponics bay have disappeared!
(Neelix comes over the commlink)
Neelix: Neelix to bridge!
Janeway: Go ahead, Mr. Neelix.
Neelix: You’d better get Mr. Vulcan and a security team down here right away! Someone has stolen our food supply! We’ll starve without it!
Kim: Captain, somebody has just recharged our dwindling dilithium supply! We have enough power to run the replicators and holodeck non-stop for eight years.
Janeway: Thank God.
Tuvok: Don’t thank him just yet, Captain. My sensors are showing every shuttlecraft in shuttle bay two have disappeared.
Janeway: All of them?!?
Tuvok: Correct. Wait, now they are in cargo bay one. Captain, there is a hostage situation! Ensign Freeman has Lt. Torres at phaserpoint!
Janeway: We don’t even have an Ensign Freeman!
Chakotay: I’ve checked the crew manifest. We do now. He came onboard about five seconds ago.
(Sensors start beeping rapidly)
Kim: Captain, twenty-seven Borg cubes have just appeared off our port bow!
Janeway: There’s something very screwy going on around here. Red alert! All hands, battlestations!
Braga: Okay. Voyager has fended off the Borg threat, and have forgotten about it by the end of the episode.
Tuvok: Repairs are complete from damage caused by the Borg cube.
Janeway: There’s a Borg cube?!? BATTLESTATIONS!
TO BE CONTINUED...
NEXT EPISODE: BERMAN AND BRAGA’S NEW PLAN IS REVEALED! COMMANDER TUVOK SEARCHES FOR WILDMAN AND CAREY! CAPTAIN PICARD ENCOUNTERS SOMETHING VERY DISTURBING IN THE ALPHA QUADRANT! THE UNIVERSE UNRAVELS IN THIS EPIC CROSSOVER! STAY TUNED!