TheGodBen Revisits Deep Space Nine

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by TheGodBen, Oct 16, 2011.

  1. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I still think that Voyager missed a trick by not doing that episode about space bees in the Fair Haven program. Sure, it didn't work so well in dream form, but with a bit of polish it may have made a perfectly acceptable Voyager episode. :shifty:

    See, that seems kinda cool and not all that nerdy. Even a dream where you meet the actors doesn't seem too nerdy. But a dream where you meet the writers? That's a little too much on the nerdy side of things. And in a dream that contained a sequence where four beautiful women sought to please me the thing that got me most excited was Ron Moore walking into the room? I've waded a bit too far out into the waters of geekdom. :alienblush:

    It's more likely that I'd be called away to fight with the forces of evil. :evil:


    The House of ̶Q̶u̶i̶r̶k̶ Quark (****)

    There's lots to like in this episode but there's one thing in particular that I'd like to comment on. Following the Circle trilogy in season two the show quickly returned to random adventures, a coup on Bajor involving a massive evacuation of the station is followed up with a random evacuation of the station and some crazy guy trying to steal Dax. Thankfully, this episode doesn't make that mistake. Following on from one of the the most important interstellar events in decades, life on the station does not just go back to normal, there are consequences for the people that live there and this episode allows us to see them while also doing a light-hearted story. I like that.

    The main story here involves Quark marrying a Klingon woman in order to save her house from her scheming brother-in-law. A Ferengi and a Klingon? That's the most unlikely couple since Winnie the Pooh and Tigger. And before you protest that those two weren't an item, I have pictorial evidence and this time it's not a crappy 'shop I whipped up in MS Paint.

    [​IMG]

    See, they're totally doing it.

    Anyway, back to the episode. The idea of combining the Ferengi with the usually serious (and sometimes far too serious) Klingons is one of those things that's just crazy enough to work. The Ferengi are like vodka, if you drink a full bottle on its own then your liver will fail and you'll die (this may not be true) and it doesn't taste that nice, but if you mix it with another drink it's easier to stomach. That's why my favourite Ferengi episodes are the ones where they interact with the serious races, such as the Vorta. In this case mixing the Ferengi with the Klingons creates some good comedy, such as the Klingon High Council struggling to understand Quark's bookkeeping. It also allows us to see a lighter side of the Klingons while simultaneously seeing a more serious side to Quark.

    Meanwhile, Keiko is forced to close the school and yearns for the exciting life of a botanist. This plot isn't great, but it still manages to be pleasant. One of the things that I like about DS9 is that there's a great sense of community to the station and the school played a part in that, so seeing the school close down and having Keiko leave the station to pursue her career shows us the impact that the Dominion threat is having on the community on DS9 and not just on the macro-political level.

    Sykonee's Counter: 14
     
  2. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Whisper sweet nothings into that ursine ear, Tigger. :bolian:

    I like this episode too. It manages to combine two elements of Trek that are often overplayed - Ferengi comedy and Klingon bull-headedness - and uses them to offer insight rather than just laughs (while also managing to be genuinely funny). The Ferengi are indeed at their best when they're being used to comment implicitly on other cultures - human, Klingon, whatever - perhaps because the genuine insights they offer don't fall victim to Trek's often moralizing blandness? And that because it is, after all, the Ferengi we're talking about. No-one's convinced they're an "enlightened" culture (they're not supposed to be), so we're free to see the wisdom in them, and the opportunity for reflection on others, without getting bogged down in The Message?

    I suppose it also shows the nature of the Quark character - despite being a Ferengi, he's usually a "straight man" isn't he? Compared to other Ferengi, to Klingons, etc. He's the character who is placed in the midst of the wackiness to either blunten it or thrive off of it, rather than be the actual source of the wackiness. I suppose that's because he's serious about the rules he lives by. He's a very principled character, even if those principles are such that he can never be a "hero".

    I guess that I see him as a less comical character than he might appear, because while his people's ways are amusing and, to be honest, indeed often silly, he actually takes them seriously and tries his hardest to be a good Ferengi. To me, he's more of a serious character that is, as I say, in the midst of silliness a lot without being the source of it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2012
  3. DevilEyes

    DevilEyes Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Quark teaching Klingons on the values of honor and courage (and it's not a comedy moment at all!) is one of the most brilliant things ever in Trek. It's some of Moore's best writing, for sure.
     
  4. Admiral Shran

    Admiral Shran Admiral Admiral

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    The House of Quark is one of those rarest of gems - a good Ferengi comedy episode.

    And, of course, this episode is where Keiko leaves the station for Bajor, thereby allowing O'Brien to pursue his relationship with his heterosexual life partner Julian. :p
     
  5. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Commodore Commodore

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    I heartily endorse this episode. :)
     
  6. Ln X

    Ln X Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Yeah this episode really rocked, it had Gowron, and Grilka (the most cutest Klingon woman ever). This is probably comedic Star Trek farce at its best; with Grilka and her sham marriage with Quark. It is so cool when Grilka forces herself to kiss Quark and then spits on the floor afterwards! This is yet another example of how DS9 mastered the comedic episodes though I still believe Business as Usual is the best of them all (of probably all series combined) when it comes to dark humour.

    Another thing is that this episode is reasonably complex plot-wise with the Klingons and Grilka's status as the leader of her house. Plus having the B-plot with Keiko is good, and ties in all the stuff with the Dominion and the general effect on the station and its inhabitants. Real fun to watch!
     
  7. Worf'sParmach

    Worf'sParmach Commander Red Shirt

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    I had to go Netflix "The Search" to see what the big deal was about Jadzia's hair. I didn't remember that at all. I don't think it was that bad, it was just so different from the way it had been that it was kind of "WTF?" I think it made her look more "matronly," which I doubt they were going for.
     
  8. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Oh the hair definitely stood out for me the first time I watched "The Search", no pun intended. I was amused by how it was essentially gone as quickly and inexplicably (well, not as inexplicably) as it arrived.

    Really, that hairstyle would be a good argument for the entirety of both episodes being a Dominion simulation. :)
     
  9. Dr. Chandra

    Dr. Chandra Captain Captain

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    I've started watching DS9 for the first time since it became available on Netflix and I finished nuBSG again and Being Human Season1.

    This episode is ok as far as explaining relationships between Trill members, but I'm still hung on the kidnapping in the first place. Those guys defeated station safety protocols, assaulted fed members including the doctor, and attempted to evade capture. When they were finally captured, they produced a legal extradition order and suddenly every got over the minutes-earlier attack and moved on to Dax's legal problems. Really?

    It seems the extradition force would spend a couple weeks in the brig, then we'd start discussing legalities.
     
  10. DS9 Gal AZ

    DS9 Gal AZ Captain Captain

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    I freakin' love "The House of Quark." Funny, but also had some that really awesome, serious moment where Quark delivers that speech to what's-his-face who trying to take over Grilka's house, something along the lines of: "And when your children ask for the glorious tale of how you defeated this house, remember to tell them that you killed an unarmed Ferengi less than half your size!" YEAH QUARK THAT'S A BURN!
     
  11. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Equilibrium (**)

    I've made this complaint before when other review threads reached this episode and some found it to be a bit odd, so I'm throwing it out there again for the sake of discussion. I don't like the use of the Defiant in this episode. Here's a new starship that's supposed to be unlike anything we've seen before and they use it as a glorified runabout. I can understand wanting to use the show's major new setpiece, and justify the cost of the ship's model and sets, but using the ship in this way makes it feel less special. It's not helped by how limited the use of castmembers is. Sisko, Jadzia, and Bashir are the only ones to go to the Trill homeworld, the other characters remain on the station, so there's no reason from the point of view of the plot why they couldn't have gone in a runabout, especially since they were going there as a precaution and didn't need to travel at warp 9.99993.

    That's not a big enough problem that the episode loses points, it's just something that adds to the awkwardness of the episode as a whole. As I said, only three main characters go to the Trill homeworld so the dynamic feels off. If there had been a b-story back on the station about Odo learning to cook while Kira silently judged him then things might have been better, but as it is the pacing doesn't feel quite right. Two or three characters walk from one room to another slowly filling time until the mystery's big reveal, which isn't all that interesting considering what little reason I've been given to care about Trill society. As I said previously, as a species the Trill are kinda boring and rely on a single gimmick, so I can't say that I care whether or not 50% of them are eligible for the joining process.

    All that being said, the character stuff for Jadzia is good enough, and making one of Dax's former hosts a murderer is an interesting direction to go in, not that it means much for the character in the long run. We get to see where the Trill symbionts live which is neat, even though it does once again raise the question as to why someone would even think of sticking something from a pond of goo into their stomach. The Trill interpretation of IDIC sure was extreme.

    Also, processors in the future must not have been able to keep up with the shear scale of the galactic digital library system because Shazam took days to figure out what Joran's song was. Or perhaps the Federation's internet was on strike due to new piracy legislation the council was considering. Who knows? :shrug:
     
  12. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    ^A sub-space whirly thing, they always mess up things like su-space comms don't they? :P
     
  13. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Earth lost the technology during WWIII and the Ferengi currently are the only ones making the app. Of course, with the money-less economy of the Federation, they can't afford to buy it.
     
  14. Admiral Shran

    Admiral Shran Admiral Admiral

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    Damn Federation Council sticking its nose where it doesn't belong again! :p
     
  15. Seven of Five

    Seven of Five Commodore Commodore

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    :biggrin:

    I love little curiosities like that, just to show how far we've come since the episode was made.

    The episode is a bit average on the whole, I agree with you there. I'd give it an extra half star just because I find the Trill more interesting than you! It was a missed opportunity not having Jadzia struggle to contain these murderous thoughts in future episodes, it could have added more strength to her haracter. She had her Zhian'tara and that was retty much it! Ezri spoke to Joran too, but that was two episodes altogether?
     
  16. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Your post made me think of the character Zhaan from Farscape, who was a very strong character, in part because of the dark impulses and murderous rage she had to contend with despite being a wise and compassionate being with a great body of experience to draw on. In a sense, Zhaan makes me think of the full potential of the Trill in a way DS9 never captured. I love the concept of the Trill (and the novels make the most of them in my opinion), but I do agree that sadly they weren't explored onscreen with quite the effort and thought they might have been. It's not too great a flaw, given the sheer number of subplots and focuses the show had, but it must be said.

    If Jadzia had been a Zhaan-like figure, remaining calm and balanced on the outside with genuine wisdom and insight gained from her various lives, while occasionally her dark side pops up in a rather frightening way, would she have worked better? I like Jadzia, I always did, but I do acknowledge the problems other viewers have with her character. I mentioned before that I always appreciated the Kira-Jadzia scenes; maybe that might be enhanced if Jadzia were Kira's inverted mirror - one aggressive and angry on the outside but spiritually balanced within, the other reversed?
     
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2012
  17. Admiral Shran

    Admiral Shran Admiral Admiral

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    Maybe I actually could have liked the character of Jadzia if they spent some time fleshing out Trill culture and society.

    Maybe.
     
  18. TheGodBen

    TheGodBen Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    My favourite was B5's Passing Through Gethsemane where the computer said it would take something like 6 hours to perform a simple Google search. Also, I got a Kindle Fire for Christmas and it's about the same size as a Starfleet PADD, so now when I see a PADD in the shows I realise just how hopelessly outdated they look. It's not the show's fault, Star Trek was actually quite prescient about the existence of these devices, but it can take me out of a scene for a moment, especially when we see a character carrying multiple PADDs as though each one can only contain a single book. :lol:


    Second Skin (****½)

    I can't be certain, but I imagine that the story break session for this episode went something like this...

    You take one part Kira undergoing some sort of emotional ride, you take one part Garak doing his thing, you mix them together and you get this this gem of an episode. It begins with a premise that's hard to buy into, that Kira may really be a Cardassian spy and now she's brought home to Cardassia. This is Star Trek and we all know the formula here, Kira's not going to be revealed to be a Cardassian and she'll escape back to DS9 by the end of the episode. But that's part of the reason why this episode works, the Obsidian Order's plan wasn't to trick Kira into thinking she was a Cardassian, their plan was to make people think that was their plan while they executed their real plan. It just so happens that during the execution of this plan that they are able to conjure up enough false evidence to make Kira, and perhaps even the audience, doubt who she really is. And that's enough to break her.

    So, there's the emotional stuff, there's the shocking twists at the end, and then there's Garak exercising his super-spy skills. If this episode was a pizza then those would be the toppings I'd order. The episode ends with an ominous warning that Garak is not to be trusted, which is needed because Garak has slowly been earning a reputation with the audience as something of an unlikely hero, so it's good to bring back some doubt about him. The fact that he'll be torturing Odo before this season is out means that this warning was justified. In fact, I wonder if the Obsidian Order were already preparing for their adventure into the Gamma Quadrant and if their attempt to extract info from Kira about the station's combat-readiness was a precaution in case they should need to fight their way through the wormhole... maybe.

    On a side note, this episode was the first that had a score by David Bell, and he would later do the scores for iconic episodes like Sacrifice of Angels and In the Pale Moonlight, so it's nice to hear some early versions of the musical motifs that become a part of the show.

    Form of... a different satchel: 14
     
  19. Ln X

    Ln X Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Why people slag off Equilibrium I have no idea, it is one of the more stronger Jadzia episodes and (I admit) a bit TNGish in terms of something shocking being discovered in a main character, but at least DS9 explored Joran a bit... At the very least Equilibrium should be 3 stars, anyways...

    Glad you liked Second Skin TheGodBen (in my darker moments I thought you would assign an average or good rating to what is an excellant episode). I dig this episode not for Kira being a Cardassian, but how she is steadily broken down as a person, and the scene where she looks in the mirror, then smashes it, and then sobs into Tekeny Ghemor's chest moves me everytime.

    This episode also humanises the Cardassians, and for once we see a Cardassian (not forgetting that one in Lower Decks in TNG) who is a decent person, and not like Dukat or Garak or your average Cardassian soldier/officer. Ultimately this episode reminds us that Cardassians are people and why we should feel sorry for them in What You Leave Behind with the near-total destruction of Cardassia. Without episodes like this one, we would not really feel for the Cardassians at the end of this series.

    Also this episode makes Kira further reexamine her prejudice towards Cardassians, and I like her final conversation with Ghemor and all that 'you're a good and honest man', that was another moving scene and really pulled on my heartstrings...
     
  20. Admiral Shran

    Admiral Shran Admiral Admiral

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    I'm curious, what holds Second Skin back from being a 5 star episode?

    Not that I'm complaining, it's definitely deserving of at least a 9/10 rating.

    I agree with everything Ln X said - especially about the skin where Kira breaks down crying in front of the smashed mirror. I also like the subtle humor it offers - like this....

    :lol: