If you thought Rom's characterization was off in "The Nagus", what about that episode ("Babel", I think?) when a key plot point is that Rom is an idiot who can't fix anything? (Or so Odo says.)
I meant to mention that at the time but I forgot. I don't think the writers had much of a handle on any of the recurring characters at this point, they barely even had a handle on some of the regulars, so it's hard to explain some of these things. I'm guessing that Odo just assumed that Rom was an idiot because he acts like an idiot and doesn't realise that he's actually a talented engineer.
Battle Lines (****)
I was about half-way through this episode, right in the middle of Shel-la's big speech about how war is different when you can't die, when I realised his voice was familiar. A quick wiki-search on my phone confirmed my suspicion; he's Jonathan Banks! AKA Mike from Breaking Bad! He's one of the top 3 badasses on that show
, which is saying a lot as half the cast of Breaking Bad are badasses. This episode earns extra points for that. Wouldn't it have been awesome if the leader of the nol-Ennis had been Bryan Cranston or Dean Norris? The episode would have earned 5 stars for that alone. Also, the Ennis should have sustained themselves by eating blue crystals...
Maybe I should talk about DS9 and not BrBa? Fine.
Sisko, Kira, Bashir and Kai Redshirt find themselves in a teenage boy's fantasy; a never-ending game of team deathmatch. The only problem is that the respawn lag sucks. Oh, and you have to suffer through painful deaths for all eternity. Overall, the episode is good, better than I remember it. Some say, including the show's writers (according to MA), that it's about the futility of war, which it isn't really, it's about how war causes us to demonise our enemy, which makes it harder for peace to be achieved. But there's some ray of hope, if you're lucky then a renowned peacemaker may come crashing out of the sky to help you with your problems. The episode may be a little heavy-handed with its message, but it has a good heart and some nice character moments. Plus, Jonathan Banks.
Problems? Well, there was that whole bit where O'Brien was all, like, "Yo dawg, I hear you like <tech>, so I <tech>ed your <tech> so you can <tech> while you <tech>." But my main problem remains the thing that I've brought up several times in the past; Kai Opaka should not have been written off the show this way. It was, ultimately, a good idea to kill her off and replace her with someone that would cause more conflict, but this is only the second time that we see Opaka and she ended up leaving the show in a planet-of-the-week story. If she was going to leave the show then it should have been in a Bajor episode, or we should at least have had an episode focusing on her relationship with Bajorans before offing her. Getting rid of Opaka like this is a sign of what little regard the writers have for Bajor right now and how they instead choose to tell stories about random alien races that we'll never meet again.
Runabouts Lost: 1
So long USS Yangtzee Kiang, you'll be missed. (Not really.)