Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by TheGodBen, Oct 16, 2011.
That would have been 10,000x better than Worf and the Klingons. CURSE YOU, PARAMOUNT.
Wow that would be so fricking cool! Damn Ira and his boys were getting pretty bold and adventurous at the time!
Instead we got 'Take Me Out to the Holosuite'.
I would have loved to see how they pulled that off - given the general attitude the American public has toward the idea of secession.
I think the idea was too much at that point. Civil wars don't just happen overnight, it was something that would have needed development in the months leading up to the episode and not something that just happened one week. Even the Klingon civil war on TNG was built up for a season and a half before it actually happened.
If presented/rushed in 1-2 episodes, it would have inevitably established the federation as a unstable, frail political entity, collapsing at the slightest breeze.
In essence, it would be abandoning good storytelling for cheap thrills.
What we've got is not the best TV ever, but it's better than this abortive storyline.
I remember reading this in the companion now - it's all coming back to me!
I love the idea of a civil war, and it's the sort of thing I would have been happy to see rather than the Klingon schenanigans. I agree that having it all introduced in a cliffhanger might have been a bit too much too soon, but it would have been a very bold move.
The Klingon stuff was done well, and it tied into the long-term Dominion storyline. It just diverted the series off it's intended course, and I guess we'll never know whether it was for better or worse.
Aside from feeling this, I'm very happy with what we got inspite of this. I understand how Worf and the Klingons were there to shore up the ratings, and the writers probably made a 'duff' situation work for them. And don't think that I'm belittling season four, as it's full of great episodes.
If I'm repeating themes I've already hammered home a few times now in this thread I apologise.
Hmmm.... it's been almost a week since the last review. Am I going to have to break out The Golden Girls reviews again? Because I'm ready and willing.
Give TheGodBen a break! So unless he is abstaining from his reviews as he is protesting about something, let this guy rest...
This week I'm protesting against ACTA, because I don't know what it really is and I want someone to explain it to me.
Seriously, the season reviews take a bit of work. I have to make the graphs, I have to do various calculations, I have to write up the season review thing, and now I do those videos too. About a week between the season finale and the season review will probably be the norm from now on. In the mean time...
Here's a link, and this page has links to other links containing information about ACTA.
Anit-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement, this is what ACTA stands for. It seems the USA is abusing ACTA to infringe on some more human rights or something. Funny but ACTA is a massive waste of space because it doesn't stop China stealing everyone's ideas...
Hope this helps TheGodBen.
Season 3 Review
It's that time of the month again so put on your seatbelts, wear your protective sunglasses and prepare to behold the majesty of the graphs!
The average score for this season is 6.192, which is 1 point lower than season 2. If I had given The Die is Cast that elusive fifth star then the two seasons would have exactly the same score. That means that season 3 is the second highest scoring season of Trek that I've reviewed, although in reality season 2 and 3 are pretty much tied for the top spot. The trendline shows that the season was was remarkably consistent, the first and second halves of the season are pretty much on the same level.
The majority of the episodes were good to mediocre with very few poor episodes. There were also three episodes that I consider classics and none that I considered to be bottom of the barrel (remember that Meridian was saved a little by its b-plot). While the average score for the season is about the same as season 2, it's becoming more consistent and that's a good sign for its future.
I rated five episodes this season below average, six were average, and fifteen were above average.
Best episode: Improbable Cause
Worst episode: Meridian
With Fields and Piller gone and Ron Moore and René Echevarria joining the writing staff, how will things change among the writers this season?
Ron Moore wins this season with a score of 7.2 out of five episodes. As a self-confessed Moore fanboy, this was to be expected. Echevarria is next with a score of 6.8 out of five episodes. Not bad for the rookies. Next up is Wolfe who continues to improve his score to 6.125 out of eight episodes. Finally, Behr's score dropped this season to 5.625 out of his eight episodes. So where does this leave the writers after three seasons?
Fields keeps his lead (7.571) but Ron Moore is giving him a run for his money, and Echevarria isn't far behind. Either one of them could overtake him, but they need to up their game to become the ultimate champion and win the trophy. (Disclaimer: There is no trophy.) Wolfe overtakes Behr to reach an average of 5.563, but he still trails the series average at this point. Behr's average also improves to 5.5 which puts him level with Michael Piller, but I'm giving Behr the edge as he has written more episodes by this point.
Next season will see Hans Beimler joining the writing staff as a regular, and with four seasons to go this race is still wide open.
Runabouts Lost: 3 (+1)
Form of... : 15 (+3)
Wormhole in Peril: 4 (+3)
Sykonee's Counter: 16 (+3)
Stupid French Things: 1 (+0)
Season 1 Average: 5.211
Season 2 Average: 6.231
Season 3 Average: 6.192
Overall Average: 5.944
Voyager Average After 3 Seasons: 4.791
Enterprise Average After 3 Seasons: 5.187
Babylon 5 Average After 3 Seasons: 5.731
So that was season 3, the first year of the Dominion Cold War and DS9's main story-arc finally kicks into gear. How was it? It was okay, but the Dominion aren't there yet. The introduction of the Dominion was competent, but it wasn't wildly successful like the introduction of the Borg. Q Who did a great job of introducing the Borg as an unstoppable foe, but what made them legendary was the follow-up in Best of Both Worlds. The Jem'Hadar successfully introduced the Dominion as a threat, but the follow-up in The Search wasn't anywhere near as successful as BOBW. They weren't quite the fearsome enemies that the show wanted them to be and they've been struggling to get them up to that level all season. Did they make it? Kinda. I think that The Die is Cast and The Adversary successfully portrayed the danger of the Changeling threat, but it took almost an entire season to get to that point. Meanwhile, the Jem'Hadar are still little more than thugs and the Vorta, as mentioned earlier in the thread, have been MIA. The Dominion threat has been wasted most of this season, and just as they're hitting their stride things are about to be taken off course by the Klingons. (Or so it will seem.)
What about the characters? It's said a lot but that's because it's true, Sisko's character really takes shape this year. Badass Sisko begins to take over the character in Past Tense, but there's also a noticeable difference in his personality once he grows the beard. You can sense that Avery Brooks was more comfortable with that look. Bashir has also grown this season, the obnoxiousness that defined him in season one and which lingered somewhat in season 2 is all but gone. Kira's edges have been softened and she seems more bubbly in personality, which is a realistic change for someone in her position. Odo successfully transitioned from the gimmick of him being the only one of his kind to the gimmick of being torn between two worlds, and it adds another layer of depth to his character. Overall, I'd say that this was Odo's season and he takes over Kira's role as the most interesting character on the show, which is partly due to the decision to move away from Bajor stories in favour of the Dominion.
Overall, season 3 developed the show in the right direction, although perhaps not as quickly as I would have liked. There are still signs of its TNG roots in places, but it continues to grow its unique attributes and it is slowly developing into something not before seen in the Trek franchise. This season may not have been a considerable improvement over season 2, but there are indications that the show is telling stories greater than the episodic nature of the other shows.
Seriously though, as another self-confessed Moore-aholic, I'm glad to see Ron start out strong this season.
I think The Search (especially part II) ranks as DS9's biggest letdown in my book. The basic concept of the Founders being Odo's people is brilliant, but the revelation happens too fast and is handled poorly overall (despite some good scenes with Odo and Kira on the Founders' homeworld). There are worse episodes, of course, by a lot, but few (if any) blown opportunities of this magnitude.
It's really the classic case of TNG-style thinking still throttling the show a bit after so much ground had been gained in season 2. As I recall, the identity of the Founders was going to be revealed later, but Piller (I think) pushed the writers to go with it right away. And then you have the TNG-esque virtual reality "twist" at the end, which was already way overused and stale at this point.
The big problem in this specific case is that the VR twist makes it feel like these episodes have a reset button at the end, when actually a major revelation has occurred that will shape the rest of the show for 5 seasons. But the way the story is told tends to undermine the enormity of the whole discovery.
Anyway, Improbable Cause/The Die is Cast really washes away that bad taste, and the show starts moving forward again. Still, season 3 tends to rank only above season one in my mind, as far as how much I enjoy it overall. Granted, it is much better than season one.
Argh just lost my reply. It was probably a load of babble anyway.
Something about seeing a reduction in the Bajoran stories saw the writers needing to take a step up with the Dominion, but it took a while for them to make them a credible threat. They got there eventually though.
I've never head that. When were they planning on revealing it?
I'm torn on that idea. On the one hand, it was weird to go from knowing almost nothing about the Dominion to knowing their biggest secret over the course of only three episodes, stretching out the mystery of the Founders across season 3 would have made more sense. In Babylon 5 the Shadow War was in full swing by the time we learned who the Shadows really were and what they were up to.
On the other hand, the Changelings are the best thing about the Dominion. The Jem'Hadar and the Vorta are rather generic as alien concepts and their most interesting attributes are their devotion to the Founders and "the order of things". The Changelings not only have an interesting backstory and truly alien society, their abilities also make them a very clear and present threat. But perhaps not having the Changelings to fall back on for a season would have allowed the writers to develop other races of the Dominion and given a sense of them as an anti-Federation as originally envisioned.
I think it was better that the identity of the Founders was revealed in The Search, because it strengthened Odo's character, and Odo was of course integral to Improbable Cause and The Die is Cast. I think keeping the Founders all mysterious and unknown might have detracted from the Dominion threat, because The Search really showed just how cold, alien and ruthless the changelings were. This made the Dominion threat more palpable especially with changeling infiltration as shown in The Adversary.
Whatever the mathematics TheGodBen used to show that season 2 was slightly than season 3 of DS9, I personally feel season 3 was slightly better than season 2 simply because it was more coherent and had more story arcs. Plus season 3 had The Die is Cast which in my opinion is in the same level of awesomeness as Duet except one is all-out action and intrigue, and the other is a gripping character play. The Die is Cast really lifted season 3 as a whole.
That is mah 50 cents...
In B5 the Shadows themselves may have remained a mysterious force, but they had an obvious spokesman. The Vorlons of course had Kosh and Ulkesh.
I suppose it could be similarly said that the Dominion had Weyoun, but would Weyoun be effective if we didn't know whom he was working for on some level, especially that half his entertainment value came from his deference to Odo? The Vorlons and Shadows both had pre-existing involvements with our characters aside from the spokespeople as well.
I don't know that it ever got that far. I think it was more that the writers had the idea, but were thinking in terms of keeping the secret for a while (in between seasons two and three), but then Piller basically said, "That's too good, you have to lead with it."
Yeah, there are some good things about revealing it. Which is why I think the bigger problem is the way the virtual reality "twist" ends up dominating part II.
I think a good comparison is Call to Arms and the Occupation Arc. Imagine that six-episode story becomes a two episode story, and, in the 2nd part, we find out that a lot of what we've been seeing is just a dream or whatever.
I think The Search could/should have been a more ambitious mini-arc (similar to the Occupation Arc in scale), but the show just wasn't ready to do that yet.
The virtual reality plot that evaporates in Part II is the type of big, galaxy-shaking stuff that ends up actually happening later in the show, starting in Improbable Cause/The Die is Cast. So, I think the writers understood the letdown aspect and, obviously, moved beyond it.
I still find The Search to be really frustrating to watch. That said, following the show's evolution in fits and starts is one of the things I enjoy most about DS9, and this is part of that.
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