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  1. - Top - End - #61
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    S1E19: In the Hands of the Prophets

    O'Brien tries to convince his wife to try Bajoran candy that his new assistant has introduced him to. She teases him about talking a lot about how much he is impressed by her and how much he enjoys working with her, which leaves him somewhat confused how much of it was meant as a joke. In school, a Bajoran priestess interrupts the class by complaining about heretical teaching. Sisko is not happy to hear about it, but admits that he expected that some more orthodox Bajorans would become a problem for the station some day. He calls Kira in to get her input on the situation and she is surprisingly supportive of the objections targeted against the Federation school. Sisko tries to get Miss O'Brien to handle the situation delicately, but she isn't having any of that.

    Chief O'Brien is working at the security station with his assistant and notices that one of the tools is missing from his toolbox that is necessary for locking and unlocking high-security system. One technician is reported missing and when the two go to check an anomaly in a plasma pipe they find the melted remains of the tool with some organic traces in it, that turn out to be human. It looks like the technician had taken the tool, went to check something in the pipe, and an error in the safety shutoff turned the plasma back on while he was still inside. But O'Brien doesn't see why he would have done that in the middle of the night without telling anyone and taking the tool without permission, so Odo starts investigating for murder.

    The priestes turns out to be Vedek Winn, the leader of a minor fundamentalist sect, who has some aspirations to become the new Kai, but with no real hopes of getting elected. She gives public speeches to school children and their parents, and across the station Bajorans start discriminating against humans and don't show up for work. Sisko has a talk with Winn, but when she tries to read his spirit she is disappointed that he is a nonbeliever and makes barely disguised threats that worse things will happen if the Starfleet staff doesn't cave in to the demands of the fundamentalists. So Sisko goes to Bajor to see Vedek Bareil, who is the leading contender for being the next Kai and turns out to be from a very progressive order. He really would like to help, but thinks it will be in both their best long term interest if he doesn't antagonize the more conservative Vedeks now, and then be in a much stronger position to support the Federation when he is Kai.

    O'Brien and his assistant go checking what the murdered technician was doing before he was killed and check the shuttle he had been going to, but they can't find anything. Odo has a chat with Quark asking if he knows about any shady people currently on the station that could be suspects for murder. O'Brien comes by to tell him that he didn't find anything at the shuttle where the murder probably happened, but made sure and checked the other shuttles and discovered that someone was apparently trying to steal one. Which Odo thinks makes perfect sense. The technician found someone at the shuttle and got killed. The murderer hid the body in the pipe to be later destroyed by the plasma, and then tried to do something at a different shuttle to hide his tracks.That moment the school is blown up shortly after it closed for the day. Winn pretends to be shocked but Sisko accuses her in public of having motivated a fanatic to the attack with her inflammatory speeches.

    O'Brien's assistant goes to see Winn at the shrine and wants to tell her that the station crew is on to them and that she want's to quit because her escape plan has been foiled and she surely will be executed when she is caught. But Winn convinces her that they all need to make sacrifices to serve the will of the Prophets. Vedek Bareil makes a surprise visit to the station, telling Sisko that he has decided to "take his offer to get a tour of the station" wink, wink, nudge, nudge, and Sisko happily agrees. They run into Winn who is surroundd by a crowd and Bareil suggests that they should both go to the shrine and together ask the people to end the hostility against the Federation crew and work towards peace. Which at that moment she simply can't refuse.
    O'Brien and Dax find that someone had hacked into the security computers and O'Brien traces it back to the security station, to exactly the terminal he was working on the day before. Though actually, his assistant had started work early and he only helped her close up the cover with the work almost finishes when he arrived for work. He is certain that someone sabotaged the weapon detectors. He tells Sisko, who is with Bareil, and is just in time to save him with a slow motion jump and shouting No!

    Kira can't believe it, but there is no doubt that Winn set up the protests and the bombing to get Bareil to a place where he she can have him assassinated. She apologizes to Sisko that she sympathized with the protesters and wants him to know that she does not think he's the devil. Which he thinks is at least some progress to have been made so far.

    --

    Where did this come from all of a sudden?!

    This episode is several steps above the rest of season 1. There had been a couple of enjoyable episodes but the production values on this one are on a completely different level. The script is more complex, the conflict has much more details, and it just looks a lot better than pretty much any other episodes so far. Duet is a strong episode, but feels like a much simpler production. I would say this is the episode where Deep Space Nine becomes good. It's also the first episode in a small arc that continues into the second season.

    It's a really good episode, but I think there's room in several places where it could have been even better. In particular I think it would have been interesting to give a bit more time to O'Brien's assistant being conflicted about having been given the mission to get the trust of the engineering stuff and then finding out that she likes working with O'Brien. There's a moment where she says that the Bajorans mostly aren't very fond of the Starfleet staff, but O'Brien is much more approachable to them and treats them with more respect. I didn't get the impression that she is lying to get his trust and access to high security systems. For being a plot about Bajorans apparently never have liked the Federation and now making their views known, we actually don't see anything about what the common people are actually thinking. We only get Kira, the assistant, Winn, and Bareil. And Kira is the one who has to carry this task all by herself, which doesn't feel right because she had not been showing any reservations for a long time, or any inclination of being particularly religiously conservative. I think this story could even have been a two parter, but given the point in the evolution of the series where it is, I'm happy to take it as it is.

    I had completely forgotten how terrible Winn is. I remembered her as being being a mean liar and schemer who is constantly trying to sabotage Sisko for her own ambitions, without making any attempts to hide how much she hates him. But this is so much worse. She tried to stir up unrest to get more popular support for her fundamentalist positions. She bombed a school. She was trying to assassinate a moderate political rival. And it wasn't just that she had contact with and cooperated with terrorists. She personally instructed and indoctrinated the assassin to go on what has become a suicide mission.
    Wow. This is evil.

    Also, Odo makes a dark joke at a conference meeting that is funny, but within the situation totally over the line.
    "But what was he doing at 4 in the morning at the shuttle pad?"
    "Apparently he was being murdered."


    Great episode. I am so happy I've now made it to season 2, which has a couple of highlights from across the whole series.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

  2. - Top - End - #62
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    Also, Odo makes a dark joke at a conference meeting that is funny, but within the situation totally over the line.
    "But what was he doing at 4 in the morning at the shuttle pad?"
    "Apparently he was being murdered."
    To be fair, it's an entirely accurate statement.
    Also, considering the previous occupants of the station that was hardly the worst crack about a dead corpse those bulkheads had to overhear.

    Regarding Winn, seeing how far she went in the end...
    It's still horrifying just how far she already was gone at the very beginning.
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  3. - Top - End - #63
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    S1E18: Duet
    ....
    This is where the show got balls.

    Wow. After plenty of silly antics with aliens of the week, the show dials up the seriousness to max with no warning. It's far from one of the darkest episodes in the show, but at this point it seems incredibly bold. So far the Cardassians had been generically villainous and the Bajorans mostly struggling with getting used to peace after the occupation. But here there are no words minced and the Cardassians established as actual Nazis. Not movie bad guys Nazis, but actual genocide and concentration camp Nazis. That's bold.
    But very interestingly, the resolution of the episode revolves around not all Cardassians being monster. Here we get one man tortured by guilt over his minor role in the occupation and willing to give his life, and expecting torture, to expose the crimes and humiliate the government that ordered them. And not just out of guilt, but he also mentions at the end that he hoped to help with making Cardassia a better society.

    Otherwise great episode, though.
    Duet is the best episode of season 1 (IMHO). The Cardassians really start getting some depth.
    "That's a horrible idea! What time?"

  4. - Top - End - #64
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    As a German, I probably have a different perspective than the American writers of the show, but what I really felt lacking in this episode is the issue of administrative staff being guilty as accessories in genocide. All the Little Eichmanns, as we call them. Mariza clearly is repenting his involvement, and he went to great length to try making more crimes public, which is probably why Kira decides to let him go free. The series never goes very much into detail about the occupation, but the German genocides in World War 2 were not wild rampages, but highly organized and coordinated multi-year projects with hundreds of thousands of people working together. Much of it wouldn't have been possible without the administration staff organizing and conducting everything from their offices. And Mariza somewhat alludes to that by frequently mentioning how very efficient and reliable he was as a filing clerk. But when he confesses he never brings it up that he personally deserves punishment for his active contributions to the crimes, and neither does Kira. Given the circumstances and the historic precedents the episode draws from, I don't think establishing that he is not Gul Darheel but actually Mariza wouldn't get him go free. He still would stand trial for war crimes he participated in. Maybe they left that out to make the episode not too complicated, but for me personally it's something that the topic really would have needed.
    This is an extremely great insight on your part, and I am really happy you shared it with us. It really gives a whole new outlook on this sensitive topic.

    SFdebris had a great quote about this topic:

    "This show the unspoken crimes of the Cardassian Empire. Forcing its people to witness and committing atrocities. It created generations after generations of victims who either turned into monsters or spent their lives crushed by guilt."

    In a way, I Think SFdebris implies that any Cardassian who wasn't crushed by guilt after witnessing these atrocities was a monster.

    Mariza certainly was accessory to the genocide. Doesn't mean he isn't allowed to not feel terribly guilty about it either. It's more than a lot of people ever felt for their victims.

  5. - Top - End - #65
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    The fracnhise has gone there before, with the TOS episode The Conscience Of The King, although Duet was a better take.

  6. - Top - End - #66
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    smile Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Season 1 Summary

    I first thought about rating episodes only as liked and disliked, but it turned out there there is a number that are decent but skipable. I will use those ratings from here on, and I went over the episodes so far again to rate them accordingly:

    E1: The Emmisary
    E2: Past Prologue
    E3: A Man Alone
    E4: Babel
    E5: Captive Pursuit
    E6: Q-Less
    E7: Dax
    E8: The Passenger
    E9: Move Along Home
    E10: The Nagus
    E11: The Vortex
    E12: Battle Lines
    E13: The Storyteller
    E14: Progress
    E15: If Wishes were Horses
    E16: The Forsaken
    E17: Dramatis Personae
    E18: Duet
    E19: In the Hands of the Prophets



    Well, that's not so good. Last time I watches the series maybe six or seven years ago, I was really surprised how much better the first season is than I had expected from my earlier memories. It is far better than the first season of TNG or Voyager, which frequently are just very painful to watch, and this season has only two of those episodes. But overall it's still not a good season. For people who have not seen the show but are interested, I think this one is entirely skipable. If you borrow the series on DVD, maybe just watch The Emmisary and a few of the really good episodes, but most of it is not really worth sitting through if you're not invested in the series. I guess this is also why little 9 year old me needed a good while to really get on board with it. It's just not that good early on.
    However, you can clearly see huge improvements in the overall skill and production value of the episodes. There are some really bad scripts in the second half, but it all looks a lot better visually and everything feels a lot more dynamic and less static and stiff.

    I don't know if it is just me and my personal preferences, but the outstanding characters so far are Odo by a long shot, as well as Kira and Quark. Everyone else is pretty meh. Because I feel they don't really get anything to do that properly builds on their personalities. I like Dax as an idea, but the one episode where she had the opportunity to shine they had her refuse to do anything or interact with anyone. O'Brien is a bit interesting in that he is both likeable in an approachable way, but can also be somewhat difficult as a person. I can't say I am a fan of him, but that's nuanced, and that's always good. But Sisko and Bashir are both just very meh. Sisko is polite and apparently stern, but that's pretty much it. After The Emmisary, nothing that happens is really about him.

    This season we had:
    Bajoran Reconstruction episode #1, #2, #3, #4
    Trill episode #1
    Ferengi episode #1
    Changeling episode #1
    Cardassian episode #1

    Destroyed Runabout #1

    All of them will get to much higher numbers as time goes on.

    So yeah, this was season 1. I though I would be writing a lot more here, but there isn't really that much to say about the season as a whole. The Vortex and In the Hands of the Prophets are the only two episodes related to larger metaplots, which at this point were not yet established as such. It's overwhelmingly stand alone episodes that don't have any character development and never get mentioned again. If you skipped them, you would never know they were there.
    This season was mostly okay, but I am glad this is over. If the whole series were like this, I wouldn't be watching it again. But it isn't, and I do.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

  7. - Top - End - #67
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    S2E1: The Homecomming

    Quark gets a visit from a smuggler friend who asks him to deliver a Bajoran ear ring to the Bajorans that she got from Cardassia 4 and had been told the Bajorans would know what it means. Quark takes it to Kira who immediately recognizes and runs off to asks Sisko for a shuttle. It belongs to a missing rebel leader who would have a lot of influence in uniting the political factions into a working government and she thinks they really need to get him back to Bajor with protests, riots, and political violence getting increasingly worse. She already called the government about it, but they can't agree to send a rescue mission. O'Brien calls Sisko and Odo to an unused section of the station where a Bajoran insurgent group have painted their symbol on a wall. After a short chat with Dax, he decides to let Kira go ahead with trying to rescue the man herself, but O'Brien volunteers to come with her.

    They find a small labor camp with a larger number of prisoners and won't be able to beam up more than one or two before they are detected and the shields get raised, so they sneak in on foot and get some prisoners out in a firefight with the guards, during which some of the prisoners volunteer to stay behind and keep the guards pinned down if Kira and O'Brien get Li Nallas to safety. They just make it out of Cardassian space and when they arrive back at the station, Sisko is already on a call with Gul Dukat who apologizes for the administrative error that led to some Bajoran not having been released as the Cardassian government had officially promised.

    Bajorans on the station quickly recognize Li once he has washed and got new clothes and a government minister arrives to officially welcome him and give a little speech to the people in his honor. However, Li is far from excited from all the attention he is getting. Later that night Quark is closing up the bar and when Rom walks out after an argument, Quark gets assaulted by masked Bajorans who burn the insurgents' symbol on his face. Li is surprised when he hears about it, but Kira assures him that things will get better now that he is back.

    Sisko goes to his quarters for the night and finds Jake still being up, who says he couldn't go out with his friend because her father forbids her to be with non-Bajorans. A call comes in from a freighter that is preparing to leave for the Gamma Quadrant, with the captain reporting that Li Nallas was trying to hide on his ship and wants to turn him over to station authorities. Sisko and Li have a talk about Li not wanting to become a leader because he doesn't actually have any skills that qualify him to deal with political matters and his reputation as a leader is vastly exagerated. But Sisko tells him that they don't need him to actually lead, but just be a symbol of a better and more peaceful future. He gives, because he can't really say no, and the next day the Bajoran government decides to give him Kira's job and assign her somewhere else.

    --

    Bajoran reconstruction #5

    This is a decent episode, but I find myself not having much to say about it. This is the first episode of a three-parter that more or less picks up from the last episode of the first season. It introduces some characters, factions, and current events, but does not have much in the way of plot development. As part of a larger story it does it's job well, but taken just by itself there simply isn't anything outstanding that would make it a great episode. So it is merely okay.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

  8. - Top - End - #68
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    S2E2: The Circle

    Sisko isn't happy with Kira being transferred from the station but the government minister insists. In a rather funny scene, everyone shows up in Kira's quarters as she gets ready to leave and having an argument about whether they should fight the transfer or let Kira accept it. The seventh person to arrive turns out to be Vedek Bareil, who invites Kira to stay at his monastery for a while until she is assigned a new post, which surprises her but she quite happily agrees.

    On Bajor, Kira doesn't know what to do with herself and Bareil takes her to one of the tears of the prophets, which gives her a particularly strange vision of the packed chamber of ministers, in which she first sees Dax dressed as a Bajoran priest, who then suddenly turns into Winn. Bareil shows up wearing Kira's uniform, saying more cryptic things, then Kira suddenly stands in the crowd naked and then Bareil is naked two. After the vision she has no clue what it could have meant, but Bareil tells her that he had seen her in a vision, which is why he invited her to the monastery. He asks if he was in her vision as well, but she denies it.

    Quark shows up at the security station telling Odo that everything is doomed, and after some pushing reveals that he has heard from underworld contacts that the insurgents on Bajor are smuggling lots of weapons to the planet and plan to overthrow the government. His information helps Odo to find the ship on which the weapons will be smuggled, but when they search it they can't find anything. But Odo stays on the ship disguised as a rat.

    Sisko goes to Bajor to talk with the general in charge of protecting the capital city from the rebels and informs him about the weapons being smuggled. He and the general have a quite friendly conversation, but the general makes no attempt to hide that he is not terribly committed to protect the government if a civil war will break out. Before he leaves Bajor, Sisko meets Kira at the monastery and when he returns to his ship Kira gets ambushed and kidnapped. She gets taken to a rebel hideout where she gets interrogated by the minister who reveals that he is the leader of the planned coup. Once Kira is discovered to be missing, Quark reveals the location of the rebel base and Sisko goes to find her. As they show up a firefight breaks out. Bashir manages to get to kira, but before he puts the locator on her to get her beamed out, he unnecessarily tries to untie her first, which causes him to get shot. Fortunately, he gets up immediately again and nothing bad actually happened.

    Odo finds out that the smugglers get the weapons from the Cardassians, and they conclude that the Cardassians are trying to get a new government in power that will expel the Federation from Bajor so they can take control of the wormhole. Sisko wants to call Bajor, but all communication to the planet has already been cut. On Bajor, the minister is meeting with Winn to thank her for her help so far and they start haggling for more support, eventually agreeing that Winn will proclaim him to be chosen by the Prophets as the new leader of Bajor and in turn he will make sure she will be elected as the new Kai.

    --

    Again, there is not a lot that can be talked about yet. It's still all buildup and development with no resolutions so far. Like the previous episode it feels rather short because you didn't expect it to end when it does. It more or less cuts in the middle of the action.

    However, I noticed that the dialog writing this episode is pretty strong. There are a lot of great funny lines that are clearly meant to be jokes but don't get silly in a way that would be inappropriate to the situation. Much of it involves our comedic duo of Odo and Quark, but Winn is also amazingly evil and mean with her faked pleasantries. Such a wonderfully horrible person.
    On the downside, Bareil doesn't work. At least for me. As he is written, I think he's actually a good idea. He is friendly, polite, humble, and dignified. This really could have worked. But it's the delivery that fails. The actor tries to pull of calm and quiet dignity, but it comes out as the most sleepiness inducing delivery since Prince Valium. But I suspect more of the blame lies with the directors to leave this in the finished episode as it is. They should have seen the problem during shooting and worked more with the actor to get something better on the tape. I remember Bareil being tiring and a bit boring, but watching him again now, it's even worse than I remembered.

    We'll see next episode how it will all play out.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

  9. - Top - End - #69
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Maybe that was the best they got out of the actor.
    After giving him a Red Bull injection.
    "If it lives it can be killed.
    If it is dead it can be eaten."

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    (Walter Moers "Die Stadt der träumenden Bücher")



  10. - Top - End - #70
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Fun fact: Bareil was initially written to be the next Kai, but the writers realized it would make life too easy on our glorious heroes.

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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    Fun fact: Bareil was initially written to be the next Kai, but the writers realized it would make life too easy on our glorious heroes.
    Kai Bareil also just sounds really awkward to say outloud.
    Looking for feedback on Heart of Darkness, a character driven RPG of Gothic fantasy.

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    S2E3: The Siege

    There's a change in the Bajoran government and it immediately expels all aliens from the system. The station is evacuated but much of the crew stays behind to stall the Bajoran soldiers taking over control. The plan is to buy enough time while one of the ships drops Kira and Dax off at one of the moons where they hope to find an old abandoned attack fighter hidden there during the occupation, that can take them to Bajor to present the evidence of Cardassian involvement to the government.

    During the evacuation, Quark tries to sell seats on the ships to Bajorans who worry about being imprisoned for having worked with the Federation, and it takes Li Nalas to calm down the crowd and restore order. Quark ends up missing the last ship leaving because he's dragging his big box of latinum and the passenger list said everyone was already on board. Turns out Rom sold him out and gave his seat to a dabo girl.

    A Bajoran assault team arrives at the station and meets no resistance, but finds that all security systems have been sabotaged. The general who Sisko had been meeting on Bajor is in charge of the opperation and he immediately suspects that it is all a trap. The crew hiding in the maintenance tunnels ambushes several soldiers across the station and takes them prisoners. The Bajoran second in command gets trapped with his team in one of the holo suits, where Sisko calls him over intercom to tell him about the Cardassians having planned the coup on Bajor. The officer then gets beamed to ops, but tells the general that Sisko didn't say anything of importance and that he was released because he offered Sisko amnesty. The general shows doubt about that but is busy with other things that need his attention.

    Kira and Dax find the small ship and get it somewhat running. Dax is very unhappy with working under these conditions and responds to it by going into full snark. As they approach Bajor they are intercepted by two ships and manage to shot one down, but then crash in the forest. Kira is injured but Dax thinks they will need a Bajoran to deliver the evidence to make the government look at it. So she drags Kira along for a bit, but she soon passes out. When she wakes up she's at Bareils monastery with her injuries fixed, and he offers to get them to the chamber of ministers disguised as priests.

    Sisko and Li sneak into Sisko's office and when the general walks in they capture him to tell him about the Cardassians. Kira and Dax make it to the council chamber with the proof that Odo got from the weapon smugglers. The minister, who has taken over the government, says those accusations are nonsense, but Winn is really unhappy with this possibility and the one who takes charge of checking the evidence. (And only on the probably fourth or fifth time I watched the episode, I realized that the end of the scene matches Kira's vision from two episodes back of being in the chamber of ministers, surrounded by politicians and Dax dressed as a priest and Bareil being there.) On the Station, the soldiers get the orders to stand down and the general is very unhappy with his lieutenant having lied and not having delivered the message that the Cardassians have planned everything. For no apparent purpose, the officers tries to shot Sisko, and also not having any purpose anymore, Li throws himself in the way and gets shot dead instead.

    --

    Bajoran reconstruction episode #7

    Hm, I am somewhat conflicted on how I want to rate this episode. Overall, I really like this three episode (or four episode?) arc. But when looked at individually, none of the episodes are really that great. There are good moments, but nothing stands really out. I really appreciate this first attempt at getting somewhat of a metaplot going, and I think they did it pretty well. But this is one story split into three parts, with no part really having that much to offer by itself. Later multi-part episodes handle this a lot better, from what I remember.
    I wonder how long ago all of this was planned? The three episodes are a different story, but very clearly and strongly build upon the last episode of the previous season. Was that already planned when S1E19 was being written? Would be interesting to know.

    Among the various minor things, we once more have Rom make a small appearance, and once again he does something that has a good chance of getting Quark killed. And speaking of Quark, him being left behind on the station ultimately served no purpose. He doesn't really do anything after that. That was one good joke, and there's another much weaker joke about it later on, but that's really it. Li having to calm the crowd after Quark sold fake tickets to Bajorans was the main thing that did come out of it.
    And yes... Li Nalas. I am not sure what they intended with having him as a character. Did they want to try out adding him to the cast? His death at the end feels totally tacked on and pointless. Since he never wanted to have the job, and being forced into it by the minister whose takeover of government had just failed, he could simply have gone back to Bajor and that would have been it. This ending is just cheese, and since we never got to know and like the character, it feels completely meaningless and empty.

    These are good episodes. They are not great, but a significant step up from much in the first season. I think having had a Cardassian sponsored coup on Bajor contributes some additional context that later episodes can build upon, which makes them a valuable part of the series. But judged on their own merits, they are not among those that makes this an amazing series.
    We are not standing on the shoulders of giants, but on very tall tower of other dwarves.

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    S2E4: Invasive Procedures

    An ion storm causes the station to be evacuated of most crew and residents, with only a few remaining behind to try to keep anything from breaking too bad. Somehow Quark still is on the station, claiming to have gotten trapped in an airlock while looking for Rom. Odo and O'Brien get him out, but Quark secretly installed some device inside the airlock. The station gets a distress call from a ship caught in the storm and asking to dock. As Bashir and Odo get to the airlock to help any possible casualties, they are held at gunpoint by a gang of mercenaries who are led by a strange acting trill. They force Odo into a container that they lock and have Bashir put into a stasis chamber, and then take him to ops to take the rest of the crew as hostages. The trill says that he was rejected as a candidate for joining, but insists on becoming the next Dax, which unfortunately means that Jadzia will die a few hours after the transplantation. He clearly isn't quite right in the head and his girlfriend seems to be a little bit unhinged as well.

    Bashir refuses to perform the transplantation, but the attackers shot O'Brien and say they will start killing people until he does. Dax decides to sacrifice herself and asks him to do it. Quark is meeting with one of the klingon mercenaries and is quite surprised that this isn't about smuggling as he had been told and then gets taken to ops with the others. While Bashir is doing the transplantation, Sisko tries to start a conversation with the trill's girlfriend and give her the idea that he will be a very different person once he becomes Dax, but there will still be a bit time left before the fusion is completed and during which they can still be safely separated. She doesn't buy it, though.

    the trill returns from the infirmary as literally a new man. Sisko manages to pull of a really bold move and welcomes him as his new friend, which actually works and they share memories of old times while the woman is watching with some real doubt. When she tries to interfere, the trill harshly shots her down to continue his chat with Sisko. Sisko tricks him to remember things they did together as Jadzia, and he realizing that he is being manipulated, but he still refuses to reverse the transplantation and is completely willing to live with the knowledge that he killed his previous self. However, he starts brooding, which Sisko uses as an opportunity to get at the woman again.

    Quark distracts one of the mercenaries and then jumps him, but unsurprisingly gets quickly beaten while the others are kept in their places at gunpoint. Odo keeps screetching about how badly hurt he is and gets taken to the infirmary. Bashir looks at him and can't see anything damaged, but gets the wink from Quark to pretend that he does. While Quark is distracting the guard, Bashir knocks him out from behind with a tranquilizer and together they get Odo back out of the stasis chamber and the container. When the trill realizes that one of his mercenaries no longer responds to calls, he takes Kira as a hostage while returning to his ship. He tells the woman to stay behind while he gets away, and then follow later to wait for him at their agreed meeting place. Once they are out of ops, Sisko reminds her that previously the plan was that he would be waiting for her, and she accepts that she is getting ditched and her man no longer the one she knew. At the airlock, the attackers' ship is gone and Odo jumps out to help Kira overpower the other guard. The trill tries to make it to one of the shuttles where Sisko is already waiting for him. But he is certain that Sisko would not shot him, even at stun, because the risk of Dax being accidentally killed. But since Jadzia will certainly die without Dax, he shots him anyway. Bashir reverses the transplantation and Dax is back to normal, but having all the memories from the time in the other body. It's somehwhat disturbing, but she does feel some sympathy for the clearly mentally unwell man. The other trill is alive and seemingly well, with the woman telling him she will take care of him, but what happens with them after that doesn't get mentioned.

    --

    Trill episode #2

    I've seen this episode before, but it's been ages, and I am not sure I've seen it more than once back in 94. The premise always seemed terrible to me and I thought it was one of the awful ones. But this is actually good. Actually really good. The premise is indeed a bit weird, and again we have an episode that revolves around Dax but doesn't actually include Dax doing anything.

    What really sold this episode for me was Sisko's role in it. Finally an episode in which Sisko is actually doing something noteworthy worth cheering on. He clearly has a plan, even when he is not telling anyone about it. And it's a pretty long shot, but he goes in with full confidence. His first attempt is to convince the woman that she is not actually helping the trill with this, because he will become a very different person and he is not a fitting match for Dax. That doesn't work because she was expecting to be told something like this, but her man had already assured her that would not actually happen. After the transplantation, he does an amazing job at welcoming back his old friend, even though internally he should despise the man and be revolted by what he has done. In this, he is actually manipulating both of them simultaneously, but in different ways.He gets the trill to become more sympathetic to him, but also gets the woman to feel like she isn't very interesting anymore to this new man who is behaving completely differently from the one she knew. Fantastic script, great acting.

    I first was surprised that we have once again Quark doing something criminal that gets other people in serious danger, but he had no clue what the criminals really were after. And when he does realize that their plan will kill Dax, he's the one who saves the day by attacking a klingon and then freeing himself, Bashir, and Odo when he gets taken to the infirmary. I accept that as having him redeem himself.

    The one thing that I found lacking was the very ending. What now? Does the trill live? It seems so, but it wasn't quite clear. And what is happening to him and the woman now? Will they go to prison or will they get him institutionalized. I got the very clear impression that he was having mental problems that led him to attempt to murder someone to make himself into a more confident and capable man. Really wouldn't have been much of an effort to give Sisko one or two more lines at the end. But other than that, I actually quite liked this.
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    This one was one of my favourites when I first watched it. It was a fairly standard Trek episode for the first 30 minutes, but once the operation is done then all of a sudden the episode's antagonist (Verad) and his victim (Dax) become the same person. Which makes for a really interesting conversation where Sisko's simultaneously talking to his best friend and his best friend's murderer.

    I remember liking Bashir's performance a lot too – he gets to be a pretty good character over the course of the show, but he doesn't get much to do in Season 1, and it was nice getting to see him finally get some material.

    It also has one of Sisko's best lines:

    Spoiler
    Show
    Verad Dax: Don't be ridiculous, you're not going to shoot me.

    Commander Sisko:What makes you so sure?

    Verad Dax: This is Dax you're talking to, Benjamin. We both know that if you shoot me, even on stun, you risk killing the symbiont.

    Commander Sisko: If I let you go, Jadzia dies.

    Verad Dax: But Dax will live. What's one girl's life compared to eight lifetimes of knowledge and experience? - You're not going to shoot me. You know that, and so do I. Goodbye, Benjamin.

    [walks past Sisko into the shuttle]

    Commander Sisko: Verad!

    [Verad turns around]

    Commander Sisko: Don't call me Benjamin.

    [zap.]
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #9 in the series, Marked, is out as of July 2018. For updates, check my blog!

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    I found it an interesting examination of the symbiont as a distinct entity. I mean usually Trill episodes are more about the past-lives and the various indiscretions and obligations of Dax's prior hosts, or later how hard it is to manage to form your own identity when your part of a small collective of individuals. Here we have Jadzia violated and soon for death and the Dax symbiont ripped from her and implanted in this stranger who is also her de facto murderer, and while this new Dax has the sense of familiarity from Jadzia and Curzon you also see how the symbiont's quickly willing to rationalize what we'd reasonably assume before it would've found unconscionable in its new host, based mostly on egotism.

    Well, sure, some of that's obviously from his new host's perspective, but it does illuminate for me at least that the symbiont prizes its own existence above anything else, with a fluid sense of morality and its own priorities changing. So long as it can be in the world and have an opportunity for greatness, it doesn't seem to care about much else as a sapient organism.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitten Champion View Post
    I found it an interesting examination of the symbiont as a distinct entity. I mean usually Trill episodes are more about the past-lives and the various indiscretions and obligations of Dax's prior hosts, or later how hard it is to manage to form your own identity when your part of a small collective of individuals. Here we have Jadzia violated and soon for death and the Dax symbiont ripped from her and implanted in this stranger who is also her de facto murderer, and while this new Dax has the sense of familiarity from Jadzia and Curzon you also see how the symbiont's quickly willing to rationalize what we'd reasonably assume before it would've found unconscionable in its new host, based mostly on egotism.

    Well, sure, some of that's obviously from his new host's perspective, but it does illuminate for me at least that the symbiont prizes its own existence above anything else, with a fluid sense of morality and its own priorities changing. So long as it can be in the world and have an opportunity for greatness, it doesn't seem to care about much else as a sapient organism.
    We don't know how intelligence the symbiotes are. We haven't seen evidence they can control their hosts to any degree and while its possible to call up the memories of previous hosts and even talk to those people. There was never an instance of communicating with the symbiotes in alpha cannon. Aside perhaps from the TNG episode "The Host" but the Trill in that episode are so different then in DS9 its more or less retconned out of existence. And even if they are intelligent resisting its new host could be like asking it not to breathe or to stop it heart.

    I first was surprised that we have once again Quark doing something criminal that gets other people in serious danger, but he had no clue what the criminals really were after. And when he does realize that their plan will kill Dax, he's the one who saves the day by attacking a klingon and then freeing himself, Bashir, and Odo when he gets taken to the infirmary. I accept that as having him redeem himself.
    Quark is a schemer but he's not really into hurting people. As bad as "Move Along Home Was" its important to note that when asked to choose someone to die he got onto his knees and groveled.
    Nale is no more, he has ceased to be, his hit points have dropped to negative ten, all he was is now dust in the wind, he is not Daniel Jackson dead, he is not Kenny dead, he is final dead, he will not pass through death's revolving door, his fate will not be undone because the executives renewed his show for another season. His time had run out, his string of fate has been cut, the blood on the knife has been wiped. He is an Ex-Nale! Now can we please resume watching the Order save the world.

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    S2E5: Cardassians

    Bashir and Garak see a Bajoran man with a Cardassian boy on the promenade and intrigued Garak walks over to them to introduce himself. When he touches the boy's shoulder, he gets bitten in his hand. Bashir tells Sisko about the incident, and just at the same time Gul Dukat is making a call to ask about the boy, who must be one of the Cardassian orphans that were left behind when the occupation forces withdrew from Bajor. He is terrible ashamed of this humiliation for the Cardassian people and galantly makes it his personal mission to see the forgotten orphans returned to Cardassia. Sisko tells him to hold his horses, because he first needs to determine if there are grounds to take the boy from his new family.

    Garak does not believe for one moment that Dukat is acting out of compassion, or that he didn't know about the abandoned children, and so Bashir goes around asking some questions about the boy. The captain of the ship on which the boy arrived implies that the Cardassian children are being mistreated by the Bajorans that care for them, so for the time being it is decided that the boy should stay with Miss O'Brien until they have determined what is really going on and what should happen with him. While this is a somewhat reasonable approach, Miss O'Brien happens to live with Mister O'Brien, who does have quite the history with Cardassians himself and so far has never been hiding his prejudices. Being raised Bajoran, the boy shares their perceptions of them and really doesn't want to go to Cardassia or see any other Cardassians. O'Brien tries his best to assure him that everything will be fine, but finds it really hard to make convincing arguments that living with his relatives on Cardassian will be better that living among Bajorans.

    Dukat had the boy's DNA checked in the Cardassian databases and discovered that his father is one of the members of the Cardassian government, who is already on his way to the station. Garak is not surprised by that, because Dukat is an old enemy of the government and the politician in question was one of the key people who ordered the military to end the occupation of Bajor. Garak and Bashir go to Bajor to check the records at the orphanage where the boy was adopted, and after Garak quickly fixes the broken computer, he finds that the boy's file is missing.

    The father arrives on the station and first has a short talk with O'Brien who tries to be supportive while still opening the topic that going to Cardassia might not be the best thing for the boy. The father tells him that he has to have his son back at any cost, because his culture values family over everything. Even if it means that he will be publicly disgraced for having failed to find his lost son after his house was destroyed by Bajoran rebels. He meets his son, but not surprisingly the boy does not want to go with him. The father and the Bajoran man disagree over where the boy should live, but they both agree that Sisko should run the custody hearing. And shortly after Dukat arrives at the station to take part in the hearing, claiming that the future of the abandoned children is a matter so close to his heart.

    Garak doesn't find the file, but manages to find the Bajoran social worker who took the boy in at the orphanage. And she is able to tell him and Bashir that the boy was brought to them by a Cardassian officer from the Cardassian station. Bashir goes to the custody hearing and requests that he may ask some questions. He lays out that the boy's father was responsible for ending the occupation, which made Dukat lose his job as governor of Bajor. And it was someone of Dukat's staff who gave the boy to an orphanage, of which any documentation has disappeared. Now that the boy has been found, the father will soon loose his entire reputation and political power. Just while he is conducting a government investigation into the Cardassian's military's attempts to sponsor the coup on Bajor that would have expelled the Federation from the region and made a new occupation of Bajor possible. Dukat has nothing to say about that and flees the scene.

    In the end, it is decided that the boy should go to Cardassia, but the father is quite certain that Dukat won't leak anything about that to the public. A society that looks very harshly on men failing to do anything possible to protect their families probably will also have some opinions about men going after their rivals' children for revenge.

    --

    Cardassian episode #2

    Another great episode. This one really manages to tell two interesting stories at the same time and make them both build on each other.

    Sisko, and perhaps more importantly O'Brien, are dealing with a social issue. Custody for the boy is not a clear answer, as both men seem like they would care very well for him. Life on Bajor as a young Cardassian would surely be very tough and possibly even get harder as he gets older, but at the same time he is really uncomfortable with Cardassian culture and society and wants nothing to do with it. He likes his Bajoran family and does not want to live with his Bajoran father. You can argue for both sides and have a personal opinion which one would be better for him, but it is very clear that there is no obvious good and bad choice. That makes this an actual conundrum while also avoiding sappy drama.
    O'Brien finds himself in a position where he has to face his prejudices in a way like never before. At first he gets rather anxious about a Cardassian being in the same place as his young daughter, but he quickly overcomes that and sees the boy as a person who is completely different than the Cardassian soldiers he had been dealing with. It appears that his own moral values make him think that it's wrong to have a child raised in a foreign culture and kept separated from his relatives. But the fact that his relatives are Cardassians and he would be growing up on Cardassia makes this a real ethical conflict for him.
    The third social aspect in this part of the episode is the insight it gives into Cardassian government and society. When the father arrives he turns out to be a very reasonable and cordial man. He has a high ranking position in the Cardassian government, and he was personally involved in forcing the military to end the occupation of Bajor while currently leading an investigation of the military engaging into apparently illegal operations in foreign territories. There is a strong implication that the civilian society of Cardassia is rather different than what we've seen from the military so far, and that they are pretty fed up with activities of the High Command themselves. And when the father talks about Cardassian values, he talks about things that O'Brien very much approves of, showing the similarities to the Federation rather than the differences.
    This is the second episode that deals with Cardassian society, and both of them provide more evidence of how awful the military is and simultaneously showing how much many Cardassians are appalled by this themselves. I like that.

    The other half of the episode is Bashir and Garak going on an adventure of conspiracy and investigation. We had a bit of that way back in S1E2, but here it's an even bigger part and even more fun. Unless I missed it, I think this is actually only the second time Garak appeared at all. And once again, there is very little ambiguity about Garak's background. It's not exactly clear what he did in the past, but he is obviously an expert of investigation with considerable technical skills about computers, and his interest in the whole situation seems to be very much focused on Dukat's involvement. The welbeing of the orphans does not really seem to concern him very much, though he doesn't do anything that would make him see heartless. At the end of the episode, Bashir asks him what his stakes in all of this were, to which he replies that he already has all the needed information and can surely figure it out himself. Garak here is fun and clever, but not yet at the level of a snarking genius.

    What really impresses me is how this episode is doing so many things at the same time and manages to very elegantly weave them together into a cohesive whole. I think O'Brien doesn't have any real interaction with Sisko, Bashir, and Garak, and the later two are completely uninvolved in the custody question. But still both stories keep supporting each other with additional context. That's actually really elegant writing.
    Great episode.
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    This is one of the last episode I ever got to watch of DS9. I had the DVD sets from Season 3 onward, so season 1-2 were the ones I saw the least of.

    It's also one of the most interesting. Ya know, my GF and I felt the show runners really shortchanged the Cardassians in the later seasons. Everything about cardassian military tactics and politics is about deception, manipulation, traps and ambush.

    But during season 7, when Damar raised the flag against the Dominion, they mention that he is a "by the book soldier" who has no sense of subterfuge.

    I thought the Carsassian would have made better insurgents.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    S2E5: Cardassians
    Great episode.
    This is a great episode, and more so it's the type of story only DS9 can tell. You need the year of back story and seting information for an epsiode like this. And you can do that when the setting is one place....but it does not work when it's a new planet every week.

    A great moment is when Miles and Ruko bond over not liking the Caradssian Dobo meat (and you just knowwwwww Keko does not like it either but she puts on that false 'yum yum' face).

    Even better are the Sisko and Bashir bits. When Bashir just walks into ops and jumps on the call with Dukot, you can relly feel Sisko's anger. And Sisko's comment of, ''so then you felt the need to intrupt my conversation"...lol

    And then waking Sisko up at like 3am and asking for a Runabout....and Sisko is like ''well by all means, will one runabout be enough?"

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    S2E6: Melora

    The station gets visited by a Starfleet scientist from a low gravity world who can only walk with a powered exoskeleton and mostly moves around with a wheelchair. Unfortunately, a Cardassian station isn't build with accessibility in mind so they have to make some modifications, including getting quarters ready where gravity can be turned off. When Melora arrives she is immediately rude and hostile to everyone trying to be nice.

    The next day Dax wants to get her for their first research trip to the Gamma Quadrant but finds her on the floor of a cargo bay with slight injuries from a fall after the tried to get some additional equipment without notifying anyone. Bashir checks her and finds no major injuries, but the expedition has to be postponed to the next day. She becomes a bit more friendly and that evening goes with Bashir to the klingon restaurant. When she returns home, she lets him try out the low gravity she usually lives in. And wow! Who could have seen that coming?! Romance!

    On the third day Melora and Dax do their first scans in the Gamma Quadrant and when they come back Bashir tells her that he had been looking at an old research paper about enabling humanoids to function in higher gravity, and with the scientific advances of the past decades the procedure should now be easily doable. They try it out and it it works remarkably well for an hour or so.

    The next day Melora and Dax go collecting more data in the Gamma Quadrant and they have have a short talk about relationships between Starfleet officers. Back at the station she talks with Bashir about the dangers of going back and forth between adapting her body for low and high gravity, and she will have to decide if she wants the permanent alterations or not.

    Meanwhile Quark has been visited by an old criminal friend who just got back out of prison and has come to kill him for his betrayal. Quark tries to buy him off by offering him the latinum he will get paid for a deal the next day. As the exchange is made, the criminal shots the buyer, but Odo already had him under surveillance and security arrives immediately. The criminal takes Quark as a hostage and as they run away from security they run into Dax and Melora who have just docked and get forced back on the shuttle to take off to the Gamma Quadrant. Sisko, O'Brien, and Bashir pursue them and the criminal shots Melora to show he will kill hostages if they don't back off. After a while Melora wakes up again, crawls to a console, and turns off gravity. Being used to move in no gravity, she overpowers the criminal and the situation is back under control. Back at the station she tells Bashir that she doesn't want the permanent alterations to her nerves and muscles because that's just not how her species is and she won't be able to return to her homeworld.

    --

    Well, this was really quite bad.

    Not horribly awful as an episode, but the script just completely sucks. This episode manages to have almost no content and still feel terribly rushed. So they wanted to make an episode about accessibility and that was their first mistake. You don't make that an episode, you make this an element of the whole show. Nobody wants to see a social issue very special episode.
    It's also completely implausible. I get it that a Cardassian station really isn't build for people with limited mobility, but we really have to believe that Starfleet doesn't have any low gravity species and this is a completely new issue that never really came up before?

    The science here is as usually laughable. First, Bashir gets the solution for a medical problem in one day that had not been worked on for 30 years. Then he is ready to start the treatment immediately, the effect kicks in in 10 seconds, and the whole treatment should be completed in a week or so. And apparently they have started the process without fully talking through the side effects and long term consequences.
    Now generic engineering to significantly increase bone density and muscle strength would be very much a plausible medical process. It might have sounded somewhat fantastic back in the 90s, but now it feels somewhat silly that it had not already been perfected in the 24th century. But that's not even what they are doing here. Instead the procedure is something about altering her nerves to simply send stronger signals to her muscles, and that will make her function normally in higher gravity. Bodies do not work this way. And then Melora gets shot, and to everyone's surprise is actually completely unharmed. They can't explain it, but think it must have been a side effect of the treatment that caused her to not be dead.
    I think in general this is actually a nice idea. But this development is something that would need to be stretched over a full season, maybe even two or three, to feel believable and meaningful. Here it's just the gimmick of the week. There was a rather cringy episode on TNG where Worf was struggling really badly with recovering from a paralyzing spinal injury, and that one did the topic much better than this.

    Is it low gravity or zero gravity? They say low gravity, but every scene we are shown where normal gravity is turned off clearly show zero gravity. Which of course would be impossible, since you can't have zero gravity planets. And if she lacks the strength to walk normally in standard gravity, why doesn't she set gravity in her quarters to the strength were she can stand and Bashir stumble around? Instead they are both flying. She even has a picture of her and her brother flying through the sky. If they can super-jump on their low gravity homeworld, then they would have the strength to walk in standard gravity. And how exactly would making her stronger prevent her from experiencing low gravity again? It doesn't seem completely out of the question that the procedure requires her to be under constant gravity while the alterations to her body are being made. But the idea that going into low gravity later would damage her nervous system sounds very implausible. I think her argument that she would be something of a super muscled freak compared to the body she is used to should have been enough to justify the decision not to have the permanent alterations.

    Other points of annoyance: Was that romance aspect necessary? I can answer that. No it wasn't. It was completely pointless and unneeded. All the stuff with Quark and the criminal was equally pointless and boring. But without these two things the episode would only have been half as long. Which might have improved it. This was the first time with the series so far where I got so bored I checked the time and it was only 15 minutes in.

    This script was terrible. It's boring, makes little sense, nothing happens, and it's also rushed. This doesn't feel like an early draft of a script. This feels more like an outline for a draft. Though I think having Melora as a permanent crew member who is undergoing the alterations over several seasons would actually have been a nice addition to the series. Even if at the end she still decided that being genetically altered to the point. There was great potential in the idea, but they just shoved in in as filler in a rather disrespectful way.
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    S2E7: Rules of Acquisition

    Quark, Rom, and Dax are playing tongo with the other ferengi on the station. Some of the ferengi mutter things about women behaving improperly, and Dax replies that they are just upset about her raking in all their money. The new waiter Pel introduces Quark to a new snack that makes him go for his drink immediately without him noticing, and suggest they give it out to customers. Quark is quite impressed by this initiative.

    The Grand Nagus calls to tell Quark that he is coming to the station for business negotiation with the Gamma Quadrant. When he arrives, Sisko and Kira want something in return for allowing him to do business on the station and Sisko gets him to give the Bajorans a shipment of fertilizer for free, as a gesture of goodwill for future relationships. He then tell Quark that he has come to negotiate with traders from the Gamma Quadrant for 10,000 vats of chula berries. Not because the berries are particularly profitable, but because the ferengi need to get some first business partners in the Gamma Quadrant that will help them get into contact with other traders in the long term. And he wants Quark to negotiate the deal. Quark is overjoyed at first, but Pel points out that he's probably being set up to be the fall guy if the negotiations fail. Pel seems to be a clever guy and so Quark wants him to be his assistant, for 20% of the profits, while Rom gets pushed away to serve Pel's tables. In Pel's quarters, we see that she's actually a woman with fake big ears, and very happy with how things are coming along so far.

    When the traders arrive, the first first thing that is seen of them is one of them being thrown out of the ship by the captain. They are overall tending to be rather violent and intimidating and get angry about the Nagus not talking to them in person, but Pel interferes on Quark's behalf and knows just how to nudge him to stand his ground and insist on his demands. The traders offer to trade 5,000 vats, but Quark doesn't back down and demands 10,000 or nothing. The Nagus is joining the evening's tongo group and keeps talking smack about Quark, but Pel says some things to both defend him and make him look good in the Nagus' eyes, which Dax notices.

    The next day, Dax is having a chat with Pel about Pel being a rather unusual ferengi, which impresses her. They also talk about Quark which leads to this funny exchange: "I can't help it but love Quark." - "So do I..." - "Yeah, you really do." - "What! Shhh! - "Don't worry, your secret is safe with me." - "Does he know that I am a woman?" - "Your a woman?!" - "Shh!!!"
    Pel just really wasn't happy as a woman on the homeworld, knowing that she's actually better at business than most men, and so disguised herself and left to make her own career.

    The negotiations end up failing and the traders leave, which makes the Nagus very angry at Quark. But again Pel intervenes and convinces the Nagus to give Quark his shuttle so they can go to the Gamma Quadrant and keep pestering the traders on their planet. But now Quark is supposed to get 100,000 vats. They leave the station and Pel tries to tell Quark her secret, but he says he doesn't want to hear because he already know what it's about, but Pel had agreed on 20% of the profit and he won't budge on that. On the station, Rom is very much upset that Quark is ignoring him and now does all business stuff with Pel. Odo asks him why he isn't happy about being left alone by Quark, and Rom says that he's still his brother and asks how Odo would feel if anyone came between him and his brother. Odo replies that he doesn't have any brothers, that he knows of, but if he did, he would not allow anyone to get between them and do anything to stop it. He seems to get unusually angry at that thought, which the next moment quite surprises him. Rom goes to search Pel's quarters and eventually finds a box with spare fake ears.

    At the aliens' planet they hunt down the traders they had been negotiating with, but he tells Quark to go away. But Quark insists that he won't leave until he gets his contract signed and eventually has to flip over a table to get the trader's attention. He finally gives in and offers to sell 10,000 vats, but now Quark wants 100,000 which he can not sell to the ferengi. Quark and Pel decide to stay over night and try again tomorrow, but when it turns out there is only one bed Pel starts to panic. She's saved when the trader's assistant comes by and explains that her boss can't sell 100,000 vats because he doesn't have that many. But for the right price she will tell them who does. Quark agrees and is told that anyone who wants to do large scale business in the Gamma Quadrant has to do so with the Dominion, and she can get them in touch with one of the Dominion's contacts.

    When they are back at the station, the Nagus is very pleased with Quark's success and admits that getting in touch with the Dominion was the whole point of everything in the first place, because he just couldn't get any real information about what they are or how to contact them. Rom urgently calls Quark over to tell him something very important and urgent. Seen from across the noisy bar, Rom is wildly talking to Quark without sound, and then calls Pel over. Pel whispers something into Quark's ear, which makes Quark keel over on the spot.
    When he gets back up in the infirmary, he tells Rom not to tell anyone about Pel, because he'll be convicted for employing a ferengi woman. He goes to Pel and tells her that she has to leave immediately before anyone else finds out about her, and wants to give her ten bars of latinum to help her get on her way. But before she leaves, the goes visiting the Nagus while Quark and Rom are there. The Nagus praises her for her business skills and cunning, to which she takes her fake ears off. The Nagus is outraged and wants to throw her into prison, but Quark steps in to defend her. The Nagus tells him that he will throw him into prison as well for employing a female, because not knowing is no excuse. But Quark tells the Nagus that he would have to lose his position as well, because he had a female represent him in official business negotiations, and not knowing is no excuse. So the Nagus agrees that they will all keep it a secret.

    Pel visits Quark a last time and says she will go to the Gamma Quadrant to make her own career and asks him to come with her, but he says that he can't, which she completely understands. Before she leaves, she gives him a kiss. And takes the latinum he had offered her.

    --

    Ferengi episode #2

    Another great episode. Doing comedy episodes in non-comedy shows is rarely pretty to watch, but ferengi almost always work for me in Deep Space Nine. I don't think I did when I first saw the series, but these days I find the Nagus to be one of my favorite minor characters. I only know realized what actor is playing him, you should look it up. I can't even say his name in a normal voice.

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    I think this is actually the first time we see Dax being friends with aliens who are considered highly unpleasant by other people from the Federation. Dax is one of my favorite characters, and her casual tolerance of almost all people because she has seen and done pretty much anything in her past lives is one of the main aspects of this. I know there's a good more material on that topic to come in the future, so I will get into that then.
    Once again, this episode reminded me that in some ways, even the mid-90s were quite different from today. I think in Germany we are more relaxed about such things in General, and my family is particularly tolerant, but I think when this episode was made, the joke about Dax saying she knows Pel loves Quark and than being surprised that Pel is a woman was actually quite daring and gave Dax a touch of being a deviant. But I approve of it. I think that's the kind of gay joke that does a good job of getting people loosen up about their hangups.

    This episode also makes Quark look good. He doesn't show any feelings of being betrayed or being repulsed by Pel, but only gets upset and ties to get rid of her quickly because the threat to his career. And when the Nagus wants to throw her in prison, Quark immediately comes to her defense and stands up to the Nagus. He's still putting business over love, but with Quark you really can't expect that much, and neither does Pel, who is very understanding about it.
    Rom does not look that good. At the start of the episode, he's again one of the more vocal ones complaining about women rights. And while he is mostly upset about getting shoved aside as Quark's left-hand man, he immediately uses the opportunity to use Pel's secret against her. There is more to his story as the series goes on, and this issue is an important part of it from what I remember. But since I don't remember that much, this is also a topic for another time.

    And only when I checked what the title of the episode was now did I get it! It's not just about the actual rules of acquisition that gets quoted throughout the episode, but also about the restrictions of ferengi society, which is all about business. Clever.

    The foreshadowing about the Dominion is nice. But I only know notices the even subtler foreshadowing about Odo instinctively getting quite fierce about the idea of someone messing with his family, even though he thinks he doesn't have one. And his expression looks like he's surprised by that reaction himself.

    Great episode, really enjoyed it.
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  22. - Top - End - #82
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Its to bad the actress suffered some claustrophobia issues with the makeup otherwise she’d have returned for future episodes.
    Nale is no more, he has ceased to be, his hit points have dropped to negative ten, all he was is now dust in the wind, he is not Daniel Jackson dead, he is not Kenny dead, he is final dead, he will not pass through death's revolving door, his fate will not be undone because the executives renewed his show for another season. His time had run out, his string of fate has been cut, the blood on the knife has been wiped. He is an Ex-Nale! Now can we please resume watching the Order save the world.

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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Vukodlak View Post
    Its to bad the actress suffered some claustrophobia issues with the makeup otherwise she’d have returned for future episodes.
    I only seem to hear about these issues from actresses, never actor. Nana Visitor had the same issue, and so did Na'Toth's actress on Babylon 5 (who also happen to play Grilka on DS9).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cikomyr View Post
    I only seem to hear about these issues from actresses, never actor. Nana Visitor had the same issue, and so did Na'Toth's actress on Babylon 5 (who also happen to play Grilka on DS9).
    John Rhys-Davies Played Gimli and had a similar issue. It’s why he refused to come back for the Hobbit to play Gimli’s father Golin.

    Alan Cunning didn’t return in X3 due to the makeup demands for Nightcrawler.

    The tortured soul Eddie from “You’re pretty face is going to hell” was promoted to full demon for one episode. Then they cut to a “RL” scene where the actor state he’s not going through this makeup procedure again.

    Michael Scholes Had to stand for hours to get the Hobbit feet makeup on. He kept count of every single day of filming that no hobbit feet were in a shot yet he still hand to stand through five hours of foot makeup.
    Last edited by Lord Vukodlak; 2019-06-17 at 03:24 PM.

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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    I have heard that RDJ's claustrophobia makes filming the HUD shots in Iron Man difficult.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Vukodlak View Post
    John Rhys-Davies Played Gimli and had a similar issue. It’s why he refused to come back for the Hobbit to play Gimli’s father Golin.
    Wasn’t his issue that he had allergic reactions to the prothstetics?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    S2E6: Melora
    Well, this was really quite bad.
    This is quite a bad epsiode.

    Blink and you miss it: Bashar pays for the meal at the Klingon resteraunt with a slip of gold pressed latinum. Humm, where he get that?

    Quote Originally Posted by Yora View Post
    S2E7: Rules of Acquisition
    This episode marks the start of the transfomation of Dax from ''boring science officer" to "deep spritual woman best pal". This gives the character something to do other then just say ''oh no the polarity of the ion flow has been reversed" or such. In-universe, you could say shy Dax starts to come out of her shell. It does fit that Jadzia is 'shy' and it took time for the 'Dax' part to work on her mind and all.

    Remember the akward Dax that was all like ''this piece of junk won't fly" and "I'd never eat that giant spider monster dog thing" and was all boring Starfleet type? Well, she will soon be gone.

    There is an 'almost' in this episode too: when Dax things Pel is a guy and is love with Quark and is all like ''ok" and even Quark is like ''eh, so a guy kissed me, eh" .......but DS9 was not quite ready for that, yet.

    And why is Zek's ship so small....like super tiny? Like Quark can barley stand up in it? Would not Zek have like a space yacht or something?
    Last edited by Inchhighguy; 2019-06-17 at 07:50 PM.

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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    With regards to Melora, while I didn't dislike that particular episode as much as Yora - it's Hans Christian Anderson in SPACE!!! which I found interesting if nothing else - I would submit that one-off romance episodes are almost all mediocre-to-terrible in Trek. You know the guest star love interest is going away and will likely never be mentioned again and that's not really a solid basis for developing a romantic plot organically so you neither have cause or time to invest in them at all.

    I think my least favourite DS9 episode is, in retrospect, Meridian in... mid-season 3 I believe. So, we're getting there. It tries to throw Dax into a romance with a block of wood - sadly not literally, as a Groot/Dax ship would actually be cool - who lives on some Brigadoon planet-of-the-week, and not only is it tepid to watch on its own with no real on-screen chemistry to be found, they also throw in a "will she quit and leave the show to live dully with this forgettable hunk of balsa"-cheap tension in to fill out the episode that was just such eye-rolling lazy TV writing thing to waste my time with. It was like a season one TNG episode they'd give to Troi that no one remembers.

    Edit: On another note, we haven't gotten into any "the universe hates Miles O'Brien" episodes yet, have we? I guess that took a while to be a running theme.
    Last edited by Kitten Champion; 2019-06-17 at 07:55 PM.

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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Inchhighguy View Post
    This is quite a bad epsiode.

    Blink and you miss it: Bashar pays for the meal at the Klingon resteraunt with a slip of gold pressed latinum. Humm, where he get that?
    It's never explicitly stated in the show, but I've always assumed that Starfleet personnel assigned to non-Federation worlds must get some sort of monthly entertainment allowance. Such a stipend would be logical as a way to maintain morale and foster good relations with the native population, and it's just about the only way to explain how the Federation cast members are able patronize Quark's or the Replimat or the Klingon restaurant. (All businesses that are owned by people who do not subscribe to Federation ethics and thus would expect to be paid for the goods and services they are providing.)

    And why is Zek's ship so small....like super tiny? Like Quark can barley stand up in it? Would not Zek have like a space yacht or something?
    Maybe Zek is trying to keep his trip on the down-low. Send his space yacht with some holographic doppelganger off on some flashy trip to Risa, so all his competitors think he is off on holiday while he quietly slips away to negotiate the biggest deal of his whole career.
    Last edited by bguy; 2019-06-17 at 08:36 PM.

  30. - Top - End - #90
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    Default Re: Yora reviews Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - All of it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Androgeus View Post
    Wasn’t his issue that he had allergic reactions to the prothstetics?
    Cikomyr stated he'd only heard about actress's not returning to a role due to issues with the makeup. I gave some examples of men. Hence similar issues and not same issue.
    Nale is no more, he has ceased to be, his hit points have dropped to negative ten, all he was is now dust in the wind, he is not Daniel Jackson dead, he is not Kenny dead, he is final dead, he will not pass through death's revolving door, his fate will not be undone because the executives renewed his show for another season. His time had run out, his string of fate has been cut, the blood on the knife has been wiped. He is an Ex-Nale! Now can we please resume watching the Order save the world.

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