Bronteana: Bronte Studies Blog Archives

August 16, 2006

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Filed under: Uncategorized — by bronteana @ 3:10 pm

On the Trail of a Trek Allusion


Captain’s log, stardate 48734.2. Sometimes it’s a good idea to get away from being a captain for a while. To that end, I’ve started participating in a new holo-novel. The setting is ancient England.

Before I began blogging, a friend of mine finally broke down and read Jane Eyre after hearing about it from me. After she was converted, she admitted that she had seen a Jane Eyre fantasy on Star Trek Voyager, and thought it all so dull that she didn’t want to read it. Well, today, I tried looking for this fantasy, and I found something quite different.

Captain Kathryn Janeway’s favourite ‘holonovel’ is one in which she plays Mrs. Lucille ‘Lucie’ Davenport, governess to Lord Burleigh’s two children Henry and Beatrice. The actress who plays Janeway said herself that the story is ‘Jane Eyre time’ and ‘a gothic romance’ but I don’t see much of a similarity. Apparently the obstacle consists in the children disapproving of the romance. Still, I found this picture interesting. It’s caption read ‘Lucie finds love.’ For a moment, I could be persuaded that this was a picture from Villette. Anyway, here’s our Lord Burleigh (there’s also a Mrs. Templeton, who disapproves of Lucie, and keeps the secrets of the late Mrs. Burleigh and the house so well that I have no idea what they might be).

And more of the… excitement? Beatrice fears her father will discover that she can play the piano. The revelation of Burleigh’s love for Lucie was the result of a technical malfunction in the holodeck and wasn’t actually part of the novel’s plot. Little Henry ‘becomes very upset.’ Well, if I were a starship captain I’d want to spend my free time pretending to be a governess too. What fun that would be! Of Burleigh’s character I cannot find anything, but my friend’s description made me think of Linton Heathcliff… Here, then, are the Burleighs. All information is courtesy of Memory Alpha:

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4 Comments »

  1. Gah. I totally remember this from Voyager! (Yes, I am a Trekkie.)When the story first aired, I thought it would resemble “Jane Eyre” but then it veered off into strange territory. Those pesky holo-decks always seem to develop of life of their own.

    You are quite resourceful if you managed to track down this allusion along with the myriad others. Good work!

    Comment by Marybeth — August 16, 2006 @ 8:38 pm |Reply

  2. I’m a very old-style Trekkie. In fact, I haven’t seen much of any of the series after TNG! Never really warmed to Voyager. What did happen in this holo-novel which is not Jane Eyre? I’m curious.

    Comment by Brontëana — August 17, 2006 @ 8:51 pm |Reply

  3. I honestly can’t remember the details very well. Or at all, to be more truthful. Maybe there was a “Rebecca” allusion where Janeway the governess thought the master was still in love with his dead wife. Maybe not. I vaguely remember the kids being kind of creepy a la “The Turning of the Screw.”

    There is a 7% chance that I have the episode in question on tape so if I ever track it down or see it in reruns, I will definitely let you know.

    Comment by Marybeth — August 18, 2006 @ 2:59 pm |Reply

  4. If it wasn’t that memorable I suppose it isn’t worth the trouble. Still, it would be nice to have Bronte refs in a star Trek episode. Then, I suppose that’s why we have fan fiction. 😉

    In fact, now that I think of it, a friend of mine dared me to write something- a sort of Jane Eyre/Trek cross over thing with Q (who is masquerading as Mr Rochester’s ‘cousin’ Quentin Fairfax 😀 I never wrote it! But maybe now I will have to.

    Comment by Brontëana — August 18, 2006 @ 11:26 pm |Reply


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