***** (5 stars out of 5)
Nothing adds up when the entire crew turns out to be holograms, and the Doctor a flesh-and-blood human being. Lieutenant Barclay pops up like an engineering genie to provide the explanation: the Doctor is actually Lewis Zimmerman; a programmer on the Jupiter station, and his Voyager simulation study of long-term isolation has malfunctioned. A radiation surge has damaged the hologrid and Zimmerman's memory. Holgrams aren't programmed for headaches, and the Doctor sure has a doozy right now.
Only by destroying the simulation can Barclay's team get in to save his life.
Or is our twitchy IT guy lying and the simulation is the only thing that's really really real?
Now able to roam the ship's key areas, delete "characters" like Paris, and even reset time back to his first activation during the "Banjo Man Crisis" months earlier, 'Zimmerman' grows more agitated and confused about his nature: Hologram or human? Person or projection?
I think they coined the expression "Nerdgasm" for stories like "Projections".
With Rene Descartes and Philip K. Dick clearly in mind, Brannon Braga wrote a cracking great bottle show about a guy cracking up, and they brought in one of my favourite characters from TNG to steal the show from the hologram who stole the show. 'Zimmerman' and Barclay are just the best. What a duo! What a tale! Not a hoax! Not an imaginary story! Although OF COURSE it is. OR... is it?