FEBRUARY 16, 1996
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Graphics Intensive. 
Transcript courtesy of  Saffron. 
Many thanks for letting me "borrow"  it. 
Visit  her "A Kate Mulgrew Page"
where you'll find more screen captures from this interview. 

Tom - Kate Mulgrew stars as Captain Kathryn Janeway on the enormously popular Star Trek - Voyager. Welcome back to our stage. Happy Valentine's day...

Kate - Thank you.

Tom - ...a few days late.

Kate - Thank you.

Tom - Was it a romantic time for you this time?

Kate - I must say, I had a divine evening.

Tom - Did you really?

Kate - ...and how was yours?

Tom - Couldn't have been better, thank you.

Kate - Did you send a multitude of flowers to a very lucky lady?

Tom - Yes I did.

Kate - Mine was not only romantic, but mysterious.

Tom - Really? Would you care to share just a few details with us before we start?

Kate - I will. I was told to be dressed up and ready by 6:30 promptly, at which time, I was picked up by my inamorata, who took me back to his house...

Tom - My which?

Kate - My inamorata.

Tom - You know what, I used the word companion. Can I borrow that...the 'inermerata'?

Kate - You may not only borrow that, you may have it. [laughing]

Tom - Thank you. [laughing]

Kate - So back we went to his house and I thought, 'Well, this is alright, this is acceptable, we're gonna have a little champagne...he's a guy...'...We walked in, table is beautifully laid, five minutes later, a woman arrived, she said nothing, she finished setting the table, she cooked us a 3-course Italian meal, which was absolutely glorious, he poured an exquisite bottle of champagne, there were red roses on the table...

Tom - How wonderful.

Kate - ...and at my place, in fact, was this locket...

Tom - Oh, a little bauble.

Kate - ...which is Victorian, and I think...terribly beautiful.

Tom - ...yeah...

Kate - So it was superb.

Tom - And then...

Kate - And then? And then?

Tom - Dessert?

Kate - Dessert...[laughing]...You guys...yes.

[Tom & crew laughing as well]

Tom - Speaking of guys, now you have got two sons, the last time we talked they were 10 and 11. They probably...

Kate - [laughing] Have they stayed exactly the same age? No, Tom, because testosteroni is at work. They are now 11 and 12.

[Tom laughing]

Kate - ...and their mother is ready to slip into a coma.

Tom - Why? I guess it's difficult as puberty approaches...and as Art Linkletter called the male hormone, 'testosteroni', takes over these young bodies, it becomes a tough go.

Kate - I am allegedly a woman, right? So I am looking at these…creatures and I haven't a clue as to what...something's exploding, constantly. I mean from one minute to the next, the change can be diabolical. From joy to rage to sadness to steadiness, I don't understand it.

Tom - You know when I was that age, I was always asking my mom and my dad, ya know, you're a single mom, but I would always ask them questions about girls and guys and stuff like that...

Kate - We talk...

Tom - ...and they would try to answer as best they could...

Kate - Mm-hmm.

Tom - ...although, in the 50s, that kind of dialog between parent and child was rare. What are your kids asking you about these days?

Kate - They're very straightforward...

Tom - Good.

Kate - ...extremely frank...

Tom - So's their mom by the way...

Kate - Most of the conversation is...although, I wonder at this point, a part of me is hesitant and I don't want it to be...part of me is hesitant because of taboo. I know that I have to be vigilant about taboo and I really don't know what the parameters of taboo are. How far can a mother carry a conversation about sex...with a 12-year-old boy? Who first of all, has never had it, who's watching all this stuff on television, he's being fed from sources that are not real and not true.

Tom - ...and you know, it's the typical conversation in the school yard, the classroom, the telephone.

Kate - All the time...but his body is giving him a real message...which is, things are growing, developing, and changing...

Tom - And let's go.

Kate - ...'and let's go' but he appeals to me for a knowledge that I'm not sure I can give because I am his mother.

Tom - Yeah, but that's precisely the reason why you have to give him some information.

Kate - Well, I can give him the basics, but I can't tell him...I think what a young man really wants to know is, what's it gonna feel like, what's it gonna be like, how's she gonna I gonna be a slob, a jerk, a hero...ya know?

Tom - By the way, all of those things the first time; a slob a jerk and a hero.

Kate - Truly?

Tom - Yeah.

Kate - [laughing] I sorta thought that's the way...

Tom - I mean, when you think back to your own, and I'm not looking for you to....

Kate - I've never had sex.

[Tom, Kate & crew laughing]

Tom - I knew there was a reason you talked so quickly...

Kate - That's why you invite me back here so often...

[Tom & Kate still laughing]

Kate - ...never had it....

Tom - But if you think back...

Kate - It's different for a girl...

Tom - Oh, I know that, but for guys...we're buffoons, we're idiots, we're slobs, ya know...and we're wonderful.

Kate - Something takes over the male, doesn't it? Something incredible happens to male that does not happen to the female. The female is praying to the Virgin me, every second of the way, but I think the male is saying "Virgin Mary..."

Tom - We don't even think of her at that point....

Kate - You lose all religion at that point, don't you?

Tom - We lose all religion, yes, yes...There is a moment in maledom when there is absolutely no conscience operating whatsoever, absolutely no consequence whatso...

Kate - When is that moment? When is that moment NOT existing in the male life?

Tom - Uh...afterwards [laughing]

Kate - Right, right, right...

Tom - So, you being a female, there would be nothing in your experience with your own parents, your mother or your father to help you with the mothering of these two young men, these two boys...

Kate - Oh, of course there is...oh, come on... I had, ya know, significant and steady enough parenting to allow me to be skilled enough, but I'm talking about the mystery between a mother and her pubescent sons...which don't think is often discussed. Every mother on the block says 'I can handle my kid, he's 12, he's..." I don't know...I don't know. So when we have these conversations, which we do daily, at dinner, 'cause you know I'm a great proponent of dinner.

Tom - Yes I know.

Kate - I sit, I light the candles, and I think, 'Oh this'll be lovely, they're gonna eat my spaghetti, I'm gonna drink wine'......and then it starts, ‘Hey Mom,’ and the voice goes down. 'There's was this girl today, I wanted to'...what is the expression they use in the school yard...[turns to crew at her left] Do any of you guys know when....

Tom - Well, these guys wouldn't know....we're all a little beyond school yard.

Kate - [laughing] They're all sitting there....with the male face.... ‘Yeah...what's she gonna say’.....

Tom - What is it they say...

Kate - He has an urge to do something physical to a girl...but it's aggressive, it's violent. I say it's sex, right?

Tom - Mm-hmm.

Kate - He wants to pull down her pants, he wants to knock her on the back. He wants to do something. He is instantly charged by anything she says that could be considered even remotely negative. Like "you pig" or "you suck" or whatever they talk about. So I was called...[whispers] oh, I hope my children aren't watching this program. I doubt it......and indeed this altercation took place in the schoolyard...

Tom - Would there be any information, just to help you over the hill for tomorrow nights dinner when you light the candles, is there any topic on the table right now that's especially pressing that I, as a guy, could give you an answer to for these kids.

Kate - You can help me...and I'm serious about this...

Tom - OK..

Kate - The you think it's possible...this is a ridiculous analogy, that perhaps it's like an injection for a woman, a huge injection of hormones that from the morning at eight o'clock to the after noon at 4 this kid can change so wildly emotionally...that's the difficult thing. I don't...

Tom - And you think you didn't when you were that different ways to be sure, but I had a daughter 12 years old and between 12 & 13 she ran the gambit between high and low, up and down, happy, sad, laughing, crying...

[Kate sighs]

Tom - 24 hours a day it went back & forth

Kate - I hear this is true of daughters...

Tom - But you know what's interesting to know, they talk about the bond between husband and wife, the bond between father and daughter, the bond between grandparent & grandchild, but the strongest bond of all, the one you can never, ever, ever, ever get in the way of is the bond between mother and son, from cradle to grave.

Kate - [Looks into camera] I love you, my sons....

Tom - True?

Kate - I think it's's deep it's very, very deep.

Tom - Anyway, let's get back to your own childhood here and it's come to an end, and you're leaving Dubuque and....and here come the feet again...

Kate - [laughing] You always go back to my childhood...

Tom - ...and you're leaving to go to New York, we talked the last time, you lived at the Barbizon hotel…

Kate - Yes, but only very, very briefly.

Tom - I know, but you were looking to become an actress in New York and become the queen of Broadway. But in the meantime, you musta had to do something to keep yourself going.

Kate - I worked...I labored...My daily life was so rigorous, you wouldn't believe it [laughing]. I did, I worked in every bar and restaurant ...uh...upper east side, Friar Tuck's Inn, I got fired from Friar Tuck's Inn, dumped a plate of spaghetti in a guy's lap...I really wasn't in the mood to hear it that day. I, uh, was a cocktail waitress at night, waited tables during the day, ran to school, was in a 5-floor walk-up, was hard...

Tom - Yeah, tough. Did you go to school at all in New York?

Kate - father may be watching. Of course I went to school. You know I went to [winking] New..York..University..

Tom - Why are you givin' me the old wink...?

Kate - Because...[laughing] I'm having that spasm problem I have whenever I come on your program. I went to New York University...

Tom - Anyway...we'll probe more deeply into this mystery of school in New York.

Kate - OK.

Tom - NYU, wasn't it?

Kate - Yes, it was...

Tom - For years & years & years on end...

Kate - Yes...

Tom - Kate Mulgrew is the guest, the program is Star Trek Voyager. There's an episode coming up which has an incredible dialogue about mortality vs. immortality

Kate - That's right..

Tom - We will talk about her schooling and then on to immortality, here on the highway of life. ...You know the segment we're gonna do next week, when we do the world's...Do you have cat's at home..

Kate - No cats, dog.

Tom - We don't have the world's self-cleaning dog box, but we'll do a earthquake update with our friend from Caltech....

Tom - Now these messages.......

[commercial break]

Tom - We are with Kate what was your degree in from NYU?

Kate - And you call yourself, however lapsed, a Roman Catholic.

[Tom laughs]

Kate - I defected, and I admit to it now, but I could not then say this to my father who felt that he was subsidizing my education

Tom - ... and the tuition checks kept arriving…

Kate - Daddy, Daddy...forgive me. I can't actually remember when I quit. I think I quit at the end of my sophomore year, but it could have been at the end of my junior year, it's all a blur in my hot focused drive to become an actress. I don't remember very much except that I forgot to tell him that I had left school. So he found out years later.

Tom - Why did you want to be an actress? Did something happen to you in Dubuque...

Kate - Yes...

Tom - ...that you said, "This is what I wanna do?"

Kate - Have you been to Dubuque?

[Tom, Kate, and crew laugh]

Tom - As a matter of fact, I was once. My dad was a traveling salesman and in the summer time he'd make these trips to sell stuff and he would take me or my brother every now and again for a trip and we spent one night in Dubuque, Iowa.

Kate - And what are your memories...what are your memories, Tom?

[Tom starts to laugh]

Kate - [laughing] Tell me now...why are you...get this man something to drink. I went to a Catholic school, of course there's nothing else in Dubuque, Iowa, called "Resurrection", which was dotted with nuns...the presentation order, as I recall, which is quite an extraordinary habit. They were rather dower ladies, most of them were probably farmer's daughters, very serious, very simple. I'm sure, very lovely at heart, but hard to crack. No laughs, no jokes and not a lot of soul going on...

Tom - Mm-hmm.

Kate - Except for my fifth grade teacher Sister Benedict said to me, "You write wonderful poetry. I encourage you to write. I think you have the gift." I said, " Well, I'm not so sure I have the gift of poetry, I'm a little florid, it's a little over the top." She said, "well why don't we find out? READ some of your poetry..."

Tom - Recite your poetry...

Kate - " the school". All the nuns and all the kids. So I went home and said to my mother, you're not gonna believe it...she said "Your NOT reading your own poetry, it's so horrible. Read "The White Cliffs" by Alice Duer Miller. It's a killer love poem, right? About the First World War, which I did. And I remember, I finished it, of course I was quite nervous...long poem and I looked down and I saw an entire row of nuns in tears. I said [snaps fingers] 'That's it'. This is for me...I mean, that’s quite a moment.

Tom - Make a nun cry, you got it made, huh?

Kate - That's right. That's it...on my tombstone.

Tom - She made the nuns cry.

Tom - We have a caller from Asbury Park, New Jersey.

Caller - Hi Tom. How ya doin', I love your show.

Tom - I thank you. How's everything in Asbury Park tonight?

Caller - It's snowing out here. We have about 8 inches of snow.

Tom - Well, get the blowers ready in the morning. Do they still have the National College Queen Pageant in Asbury Park, New Jersey?

Caller - No...Asbury Park has really gone down hill over the years.

Tom - I'm sorry to hear that.

Caller - Yeah...

Tom - If there's anything I can do to help, let me know, will ya?

Caller - [chuckles] Sure..

Tom - Say hi to Kate...

Kate - [laughing] I think [he's] is on to you...I can tell.

Caller - Hi Kate.

Kate - Hello.

Tom - Honey, they’re on to me [laughing] That's the beauty of this. They all know, there he is, ya know, more tough talk from Tom.

[Kate laughing]

Kate - [Caller], yes, you were...

Caller - Yes, I love the Star Trek series, yours, and the other ones. Is there going to be sequel to the original series involving the original crew?

Kate - The original original? I don't think so. I don't think there are any plans for that, unfortunately because they were splendid, but you know..

Caller - They're not gonna maybe adapt other characters, maybe substitute 'em...that type of thing?

Kate - I wouldn't think so. I think that newness is a big part of this game and actually part of its success, however, you should never quote me because I'm usually wrong, but uh, I don't think it's very likely that any of the characters or any of the series would be repeated.

Tom - In other words, put it out of your mind, you know what I mean?

Caller - Oh, ok.

[Tom & Caller have a brief conversation about Automatic Litter Box Systems]

Kate - [laughing] I can't believe this conversation...

Tom - That's what fire this program is discussions of good ideas to come. Anybody can put Tony Bennett out here to sing love songs, but give me a cat box that cleans itself, and I've saved America for C****** sake. Don't get me goin'…

Caller - We have a tasteful video of about a dozen cats using it...

Kate - A tasteful video? By all means, send it to Mr. Snyder. [Kate & Tom laughing] I haven't seen him this animated in a few years...

Tom - The more the merrier, OK?

Caller - Ok...who would I send it to?

Tom - You send it to me. [relates address]

Caller - OK, great...Thanks, Tom. Thanks, Kate.

Kate - Thank you.

Caller - Great, bye-bye now.

[Tom chuckles]

Kate - I cannot believe...

Tom - We're into information here, we're into new products...

Kate - You are...the highway to something...

Tom - Uh, right...[laughs]

Kate - It is amazing...

Tom - We have seen the future here and it works...[both laugh] Anyway, coming up now...this new episode...I gotta do this little break here and then it's mortality vs. immortality in the forthcoming episode of Star Trek - Voyager, with the commander, Kate Mulgrew. We will be back after these messages.

[commercial break]

Tom - Alright now, let's get to this episode here which is coming up

Kate - I can't talk about "Death Wish" after this. Tell the people what we talk about when we're not on the air...

Tom - No, you tell them

Kate - Computerized kitty litter, right That's 3 hours, and now we just talked for 2 hours and how men love sex.

Tom - And how often we think about it...

Kate - And they think about sex...every second

Tom - ...and what did what say about how often women think about often do you think about sex?

Kate - depends on your circumstances, doesn't it? How often do I consciously think about sex? Maybe once a day...

Tom - Really?

Kate - ...maybe twice.

Tom - No kidding...

Kate - I certainly don't think about as much as I think any male...

Tom - Every second of every day...what women don't understand....

Kate - Are you thinking of sex the same time you're thinking about the kitty litter, that's the question.

Tom - It's in the same general area, isn't it?

[Kate & crew laugh]

Tom - One is very close, right? Like you probably...Valentine's night you had a wonderful meal with your inamorata, inamorato...and you were satisfied, you didn't wish anymore food or drink at the end of the meal. right?

Kate - No, I did not.

Tom - Ok. But I'll bet the next evening at dinner time, you were as hungry at that meal as you were for the one that had taken place the night before. You have any idea where I'm going with this?

Kate - I think I do, Tom. I think everybody in this room...probably...[Tom & crew laugh] but please go.

Tom - So you see, to a guy, like, you have the greatest sexual experience of your life on a Monday and by Tuesday...

Kate -'re bereft.

Tom -'ve got it! [Tom & crew laugh] Can you understand that at all?

Kate - I can understand it.

Tom - But you are not bereft at all...

Kate - No, we are not.

Tom - But why is that?

Kate - I would say, even slightly depressed.

[Tom, Kate and crew laugh]

Tom - Anyway, on to Caller in Hollywood, California and I hope we get to this episode of immortality vs. mortality, 'cause you're killin' me...

Kate - I hope so too.

Tom - Hi Caller, welcome to the show.

Caller - Good evening Tom, Good evening Kate.

Tom & Kate - Hello.

Caller - Kate, I was a big fan of Ryan's Hope for 15 years from start to finish, and you were the best thing in it...

Kate - Thank you very much.

Caller - Excuse me?

Kate - I said ‘Thank you very much.’

Caller - You're very welcome. What was the most difficult about doing a soap opera day after day and when did you know it was time to leave?

Kate - I was only on the soap opera very briefly. Everybody thinks I was on for a long time, but it was actually only a year and a half, maybe two. And there was nothing difficult about it, I found it to be quite easy work . In fact, if I were to say anything about it, not challenging enough.

Caller - Really?

Kate - But this soap opera, Ryan's Hope, was written and created and produced by my dear friend, Claire Labine and I think it stood alone in it's original flavor. I think it, in its message and it's writing, everything about it was superior so I was extremely fortunate to have had that experience.

Tom - Can I ask you a question, [Caller]?

Caller - Sure.

Tom - Since this program seen in the Los Angeles area for 3 more hours, how come you're calling us now?

Caller - The things I do to speak to Kate Mulgrew.

Kate - Aww, how nice.

Tom - Good answer.

Caller - Can I ask one quick question about Trek, since it hasn't come up yet?

Tom & Kate - Sure.

Caller - Besides the episode airing on Monday, which episode would you pick as an example of your best work.

Kate - [without hesitating] Resistance, which aired earlier in the season, with Joel Gray and directed by Rick Kolbe. I think, uh, that exemplifies the best possible Janeway, to date.

Caller - Thank you very much, both of you

Tom - Thank you and watch the show later & see yourself, OK?

Caller - Can't wait.

Tom - Bye-bye.

Caller - Bye.

Tom - Now let's get to this...the dialogue as it takes place in this episode, mortality vs. immortality and the argument that has gone on through the centuries amongst men and women of intellect, and not, as to whether mortality is better than...

Kate - Yeah, you know that this is a real 'Q' classic problem, I suspect. He is omnipotent, this character called Q. Splendidly played by John DeLancie who is one of my best friends, so you can imagine what a gift this was. The dilemma in this show was there is....for lack of a better word, I'll alternate Q, a second Q, who presents himself to me.

Tom - A pseudo Q...

Kate - No, another Q.

Tom - An alternate Q.

Kate - A real Q. So we've got Q-1, John DeLancie, Q-2, also beautifully played by Garrett Graham, and we have Captain Janeway and the rest of my crew, and the 2 Qs appear and Q #2, played by Garrett Graham, says 'My problem is, I don't want to be immortal. I want to be mortalized so that I may commit suicide and I want you to have a hearing on the ship to decide whether this is a good thing or a bad thing.' So that is the episode, whether we should allow him to go back to the continuum into an incarceration, which is what he considers immortality to be or by allowing him to live I know that what I'm really doing is, I suppose, is advocating his own suicide. It's a real dilemma for Janeway.

Tom - Compelling television on the air this coming Monday night.

Kate - It is. It is. It is. It's great.

Tom - Has there been any, ya know, we've spent this whole evening talking about matters sexual. Has there been any sexual frivolity on the Starship?

Kate - Not a lot.

[Tom laughs]

Kate - We're gonna talk about sex in space now, aren't we?

Tom - No we aren't.

Kate - You came up to me earlier, you said....

Tom - Well, I remarked to you that I'd once inter....

Kate - I think its a fascinating idea. What do you think?

Tom - I think it'd be wonderful, considering the loss of gravity and all that that implies. It allows the imagination to wander....

Kate - Ooo...[laughing] Come back here, you devil!

[Tom & crew laughing as well]

Tom - On that note, young lady. You know I think the world of you...

Kate - ...and me you...

Tom - ...and I love having you and I hope that you come back and visit us often...and with your sons, trust me, it gonna be ok. You'll muddle through and they're gonna turn out to be fine upstanding young guys and your gonna be proud of them and love 'em for the rest of their lives.

Kate - Alright. From your mouth to God's ears.

Tom - Yeah. Any trouble, call me.

Kate - I will.

Tom - I'll be right over.

Kate - I will.

Tom - Kate Mulgrew is the guest, Star Trek Voyager is the program on the air on, I believe Monday nights.

Kate - Monday nights at 8.

Tom - OK, well, check your local listings in your area. We'll be back with Dean Koontz, the author of the best-selling book in America today, after these messages.