The EMH with hair! Neelix in uniform! Chakotay in charge! Kes with a family! And all sorts of other future things glimpsed as Kes lives her life backwards from her death all the way to her birth. The Star Trek: Voyager looks at one of the third season’s best episodes, “Before and After.”
This is a brilliantly written episode. Kenneth Biller’s track record has been hit (“Jetrel,” “Initiations“) and miss (“Twisted,” “Maneuvers“), but he absolutely nails this one. It’s beautifully structured, reminding me favorably not just of Time’s Arrow, but also the Harold Pinter play Betrayal. But what’s particularly nifty about this is not just that Kes is moving backwards through her life, but she only remembers what happened to her “before,” which is always in the future for everyone around her. It’s wonderful to see Kes try to figure out what’s going on, based only on things that haven’t happened yet and with no memory of what happened before.