Robert Beltran Hated Star Trek: Voyager’s Ending, Here’s Why
Robert Beltran didn't like the Star Trek: Voyager final was too quick and not prepared correctly.
Robert Beltran is most famous for player Chakotay on Star Trek: Voyager. He was a Maquis resistance leader turned Starfleet Commander, and he didn’t always get along with the ideas and ideals of the Federation on that ship. Ironically enough, in a Reddit AMA, Beltran showed his own rebellious side by criticizing Voyager’s series finale, noting, “I think most of us were surprised at the quick resolution that didn’t seem to be prepared correctly but there was nothing we could do about it.”
Whether he was being circumspect or just didn’t want to type too much, Robert Beltran didn’t expand on this comment about how he disliked the Star Trek: Voyager finale. He is most likely referring to the abrupt nature of the finale which featured an older Janeway from a darker future timeline who travels to the past to bring her younger self the means to get home to the Alpha Quadrant that much sooner. Along the way, they have a pretty epic final battle with the Borg Queen, but it wasn’t quite cool enough to keep some fans (and perhaps Beltran himself) from noticing how the show’s finale spit in the face of much of what came before.
For example, the very reason that Voyager was stranded in the Delta Quadrant, to begin with, is that once they arrived, Captain Janeway was unwilling to use the Caretaker’s alien technology to return home because doing so might have made residents of the quadrant vulnerable to the Kazon, so she destroyed the array instead. Later, Janeway turns down opportunities from the godlike being Q to get sent back home, all because of her own moral code. We think Robert Beltran, like many other Star Trek: Voyager fans, was shocked that the finale involved Janeway using stolen technology and violating the Prime Directive to get home (something she could have done from the beginning if she really wanted to).
Another interpretation of Robert Beltran’s comment that Star Trek: Voyager was not “prepared correctly” was that there was no real lead-in to this ambitious and confusing series finale. One of the reasons that critical fans think Janeway and others were going against character is because there were no particular arcs that changed their outlook on, for example, taking shortcuts to get back home. Of course, it’s worth remembering that this was an age when shows destined for syndication rarely had the kind of episodic build-up modern audiences expect.
In fact, Star Trek: The Next Generation had no special setup for its finale, and that finale knocked things out of the park. And the only reason that Deep Space Nine got such a dramatic lead-in is, ironically, that Paramount was focused more on Voyager and let DS9 showrunner Ira Steven Behr create more interlinked episodes. In retrospect, Robert Beltran may have hoped that Star Trek: Voyager could have received the same epic final season and killer finale that the sister show Deep Space Nine received.
Ultimately, we may never know the full extent of Robert Beltran’s beef with Star Trek: Voyager’s finale, but he has previously spoken about the misery of filming those final episodes and how relieved he was when it was all over. In recent years, the actor seems to have warmed back to the franchise, and he isn’t afraid to make convention appearances and dish about the show to fans. Of course, those hoping for his unvarnished thoughts on Voyager need to know that he also isn’t afraid to let you know exactly how he feels.