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I've been rewatching Voyager on Amazon Prime, and have stumbled upon something ridiculously nitpicky, but is bothering me deeply. About 1:38 into the episode, "Tuvix," Neelix asks Tuvok, "Why don't we sing a song while we toil?" The word toil is significantly (demonically?) deeper than the rest of the line. It seems possible that the character is doing it playfully, but I can't effectively confirm it one way or another. Is that really Ethan Phillips saying the word toil, is it dubbed over, or is this version somehow degraded?

Edit: I've been so far unable to find the clip on youtube for comparison.

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  • It seems that Neelix is just trying to emphasize the word. May 12, 2016 at 4:01
  • I had no idea that the actor had that kind of vocal range. May 12, 2016 at 4:29

2 Answers 2

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No evidence of alteration

While the episode "Tuvix" is hotly debated (mainly for Janeway's decision to kill Tuvix), Neelix's utterance of "toil" is not.

Putting aside the lack of any official comment on this point, I just watched the scene in question and do not find his intonation of "toil" to be remarkable. Ethan Phillips had consistently played Neelix with boisterous vocalizations that range from deep to pitched within single sentences.

All of this lies in the ear of the beholder, but I think the answer to your question is, ultimately, "no".

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  • On your comment about the ear of the beholder, I suppose that's fair. I must have replayed that sequence like five times. Given that Ethan Phillips does take a pose when he says it (I admittedly only noticed it on the most recent time), it probably is exactly as you say. I most likely will replay it another three or four times, and then get over it. May 12, 2016 at 4:28
  • Was he maybe mimicking Tuvok? (Had he used the word before?)
    – Adeptus
    May 12, 2016 at 5:50
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Sometimes actors have to overdub their own lines if the on-set recording was unsuitable (there was noise on the set, or they couldn't get the microphone into a good position, or any of a number of other reasons). This process is called ADR (or "looping") and it's a typical part of television production - most episodes will have at least some lines that needed to be fixed in ADR.

Most actors are really good at rerecording their lines so that it matches their filmed lips, but sometimes it doesn't match perfectly.

I am not saying that is necessarily what happened in this scene -- I think Ethan was just trying to put emphasis on the word -- but it's one way that a stray line of actor dialog might sound like it was recorded separately from the rest of the scene.

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