In Star Trek: Voyager, episode 23 of season 4 (remember), the episode begins with a civilization unknown until now. They claim to hold the ruins of the USS Voyager, which has otherwise contributed to the history of this civilization in a negative way, whereby Captain Janeway formed an alliance with the enemies of the people in question.

In the historical reconstructions of this event, we see many parts belonging to the ship, such as the Doctor.

This one -- having been deactivated during all these years -- still seems to be several centuries ago. The Doctor is therefore considered as the last "living" witnesses of this war.

The USS Voyager was considered a heavily armed warship with a restless and violent crew. The Doctor has done everything to set the truth about that time, and finally, all ends well, history is approved.

However, what is really going on? In the other episodes, the Doctor is always present, as well as the crew members, and the USS Voyager. At the end of the series, they all return to Earth.

What about this episode that seems to be out of the scope of the story?

I couldn't find any explanation about this episode, except that we could consider it as a separate story, but it doesn't really make sense to put an episode that has nothing to do with it in the middle of the series (even if it's very good and fits in pretty well).

I don't think this question is a duplication of this post, because this one is about the whole episode, as well as what really happened to the crew.

  • memory-alpha.wikia.com/wiki/Living_Witness_(episode)#Continuity — although it’s not conclusive, there’s no mention of the word “wreck” here. Sep 5, 2018 at 12:14
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    "The USS Voyager was considered a heavily armed warship with a restless and violent crew" sounds pretty accurate to me. Sep 5, 2018 at 14:09
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    @OrganicMarble: The USS Voyager is not a warship, it is an intrepid class ship. It is relatively technologically advanced, but that does not make it a "heavily armed" ship, as the Kyrians claimed.
    – Foxy
    Sep 5, 2018 at 14:13
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    It was intended as a jest. This is my favorite episode of Voyager. Sep 5, 2018 at 14:23
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    @Foxy : "Heavily armed" armed is context (and adversary) dependent. Compare/contrast TNG: The Outrageous Okona: "Lasers can't even penetrate our navigation shields. Don't they know that?". Sep 5, 2018 at 15:53

4 Answers 4


Lets look at the transcript.

The Kyrians did not find a wreck of Voyager. They found a few relics and a partial blueprint:

EMH: Evidence? What evidence? Like this, for example? Triple-armoured hull? Thirty torpedo tubes? Twenty five phaser banks? This isn't what our ship looked like.
QUARREN: We reconstructed it from a partial schematic found in the Cyrik ocean, which was badly damaged by corrosion. We were bound to get a few details wrong.

In fact, they had very little physical evidence, as an earlier conversation shows:

QUARREN: Take a closer look. The evidence is all around you.
VASKAN VISITOR: Some musty fossils and a recreation? That doesn't prove anything.

Even a bit before that, we hear this little gem:

QUARREN: We believe they had a complement of over three hundred soldiers.

Three hundred soldier would be twice as much as Voyagers whole crew complement. Suffice to say, if they had found a wreck, they would have more accurate numbers.

We do learn a little bit how they got into possession of some of the artifacts:

EMH: That's the EMH backup module. One of your attack parties must have taken it from Sickbay.

Later, we see the Doctors account how Voyager was boarded with those attack parties.

In summary, Voyager was not destroyed. They took some pieces during the attack on Voyager. Some were lost and later re-discovered. They only had partial information, a partial plan of Voyager and constructed a narrative that fit with their world view.


I thought they only found a EMH backup module of the doctor. Like it says in the the post you linked to.

Since it is a backup the real one is still on board of the "real" Voyager as is the whole crew. So I think in the end the backup Doctor returned to Earth over 700 years after the return of the real voyager probably even meeting the real one.

Besides they just found some pieces of Voyager that gave them the room to the assumption that Voyager was a bad ass war ship with how many was it? 20 Phase Cannons?

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    I understand that this may be a copy of the Doctor (even if I don't remember it), but I do remember that the people in question mentioned having the wreck of Voyager? Maybe I missed an episode....
    – Foxy
    Sep 5, 2018 at 11:34
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    @Foxy I believe you have misremembered the episode. They only have a few Voyager relics on the planet, like the EMH backup module and a medical tricorder, not the wreck of the ship itself.
    – Mike Scott
    Sep 5, 2018 at 11:46
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    Don't need to include "Edit" headings we can tell from the revision history.
    – TheLethalCarrot
    Sep 5, 2018 at 11:53
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    @Sharku It's possible! Sep 6, 2018 at 11:47
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    "L'Hologramme Médical d'Urgence" I like it! Sep 6, 2018 at 11:47

We will never know.

That's the thing with history — it's all an interpretation, told through someone else's hazy memories. Be it the Kyrians with their politicised and time-ravaged storytelling, or the backup EMH who we can generally understand to be truthful but is still just one person with one person's point of view.

Arguably, this interesting facet of life was the entire point of that story, and that story is made all the stronger by the fact that we are never shown first-hand the events of that period.

(One could argue that we are supposed to take the backup EMH's holodeck recreation at face value, but he himself admitted in dialogue that he had to extrapolate in a few places, so y'know.)

What we do know, however, is that neither the "original" EMH nor Voyager herself were ever left behind on Kyria (and the episode doesn't claim otherwise; you've misremembered it). That's why we continue to see both entities throughout the remainder of the series. The parts of Voyager that you see in the episode were recreations on a futuristic holodeck.


There's a glancing reference you may have missed. The Kyrians are described as being on Kyria, the homeworld of the Kyrian and the scene of a brutal fight with the Vaskans.

QUARREN: The ensuing conflict was brief but brutal. Two million Kyrians slaughtered within days. The warship Voyager continued on its way, leaving the Kyrian dynasty in ruins. The Vaskan leaders proceeded to occupy our lands, forcing my people into subservience. It took centuries for us to undo the damage that Captain Janeway had done, and the Kyrian struggle for equality is far from over. This simulation and this museum are a testament to that struggle. I hope you found your experience here worthwhile. If you'd like to learn more about Voyager and its role in the history of our planet, I suggest you explore the rest of this exhibit. Thank you for your time.

VOY: Living Witness

The next episode (VOY: Demon) takes place, according to a back-reference in VOY: Course, Oblivion, elsewhere in the Vaskan sector.

TUVOK: Ten months, eleven days ago. Voyager was forced to land on a class Y planetoid in the Vaskan sector.

VOY: Course, Oblivion

Since the Voyager appears largely unharmed (albeit out of fuel) in this episode, we can assume that any damage it took in Living Witness was superficial and that they were through Vaskan territory (which doesn't even merit a mention on the map shown in Star Trek: Star Charts or Seven's map seen in VOY: Year of Hell, Parts I and II.) in just a few weeks.

The episode was intended to be a self-contained story within the wider trek universe. It was a 'concept' episode and doesn't connect to the main narrative except tangentially. Aside from that single reference to Vaska and the presence of Seven of Nine, the episode could be set at any point in the season (or even, potentially the next).

"All we really had going into this story was the very powerful, very compelling image of The Doctor in a museum in the future." An aspect that needed to be addressed, however, was the museum's location. "For a while we thought it was in the Alpha Quadrant," Menosky recollected. "Was it a Romulan museum? A Klingon museum? We didn't know." Executive producer Rick Berman was involved in settling this issue. Menosky remarked, "I think it might have been Rick Berman who said, 'No, it's got to be in Delta, it's got to be an alien museum,' for the very good reason that he didn't want to let it be known that Voyager had successfully gotten home. If you've got The Doctor in a museum 700 years from now, there is a good chance that people at that museum know about the fate of Voyager. We just didn't want to have to deal with that. So with Rick's input we realized that it had to be an alien museum.

Memory Alpha - Living Witness

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