My DS9 Rewatch Odyssey

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine' started by ananta, Jan 5, 2021.

  1. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    What about my favourite one: “AAAAAHHH IT’S A FEEEEMALE!!”?
     
  2. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    IIRC, it's worth nothing that the actor who played Varani the Dubious Flute Player also played Nils Barris in "The Trouble With Tribbles". Kinda cool to see the actor make a low-key comeback. More off-topic, there's a Myriad Universes tale that does great things with Barris...

    What I find telling about "Sanctuary" is that even reviews of it can't help commenting on the Skreeans' physical appearance in negative terms, subtly implying it should be a factor in whether or not they're granted...well, sanctuary. While I think usually the reviewers are trying to point out how unjustified that is, it sometimes comes off as the reviewer implicitly siding against granting the Skreeans' request.

    Regarding the point that Bajor is their "promised land"...I feel that's rather true to life too, as the Middle East so unfortunately demonstrates. Or, if you prefer, the Maquis, who will refuse to leave their planets for equal or better planets because "this is our home!" Clearly even in the 24th century, not all planets are created equal.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2021
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  3. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well, I'm a gay man, soooooo... :p
     
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  4. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    While I did enjoy "SANCTUARY" in regards to its themes on immigration, it did the unfortunate thing of taking the TNG way out in the sense that it was neatly wrapped for the Skreeans. They got a whole new planet.

    I thought the Skreeans came off as self indulgent and arrogant regarding Bajor. They made a good point that they could have helped Bajor, but it was not their world and they were offered a whole new planet, not just a continent.

    One thing I always loved about this episode, and rarely done in STAR TREK, was the universal translator issue. It stood out in a good way.

    And to whoever mentioned the FARSCAPE solution with the translator microbes, I agree. I always loved that.
     
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  5. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    If you were offered a continent on a planet you believed to be Eden, or an entire "meh" planet, which one would you choose?

    Hm. Has Lower Decks done any jokes about an M(eh)-class planet?
     
  6. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    Yeah, I think the episode made a point of mentioning their skin shedding as a way of highlighting the way people sadly find things to find “icky” about another race or nationality...a subtle, nasty way of dehumanising them and furthering the “us” versus “them.”

    I considered the Middle East parallels but decided not to go there, I’d already rambled enough! The problem with Haneek deciding that Bajor is the promised land is that she’s being driven by emotion and idealism rather than seeing things clearly and rationally. Which is, of course, a very human tendency. But although I could certainly understand, I did start to lose sympathy during the whole ‘Kentanna’ business.
     
  7. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    Yeah, I agree. I do feel Haneek was being a tad bratty by the end. Her people were given an entire planet! That’s not something to be sniffed at, surely? Yet she decided she wanted someone else’s planet. A leader who is driven by fanciful notions of a mythical Eden should not be leading...you need someone grounded in objectivity, or you invite disaster.
     
  8. LadyMondegreen

    LadyMondegreen Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    It also seemed kind of offensive to the Bajorans for the Skrreeans to come out of nowhere and insist that their home planet, that they spend years and years defending against violent invaders, was a "planet of sorrows" that they were going to waltz in and make all better.
     
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  9. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I dunno, given that the Bajorans literally worship a race of beings called the Prophets, are they really in any position to knock another race who believe that Bajor is their prophesied home?

    How do we know the Skreean belief system wasn't also shaped by the Prophets?
     
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  10. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    To be fair, Haneek was given leadership by the last remaining council even on her objections just because she found the wormhole. She wasn't qualified to be a leader for her people to begin with, and it shows.
     
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  11. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    All true. We can give her the benefit of the doubt. I do think Haneek was well meaning. Things just got a little messed up over the whole “Kentanna” notion.
     
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  12. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    “Rivals”

    [​IMG]
    Bashir got the moves. And a 7 of 9 style taste in leisurewear.

    This is another of those episodes I tend to forget even exists and, upon rewatching, I can see why that is. It’s not bad by an means, and I enjoyed a number of things about it, but it is the definition of forgettable.

    Martus had the potential to be a fun character—and played by Prince Humperdinck, no less: Chris Sarandon. Unfortunately, Sarandon’s performance is one of the most disappointing things about the episode. The character really needed to be larger than life, charismatic and energetic, but Sarandon pretty much sleepwalks through the episode, and utterly fails to prove an effective foil for Quark. Given that so much of the episode revolves around Martus, that’s a major problem, because we, or at least I, simply don’t care enough about him. He ought to have been a lively, Harry Mudd-type rogue, but instead he’s just a bit of a bore.

    Fortunately, Armin Shimmerman is on top form as always (“think of the CHILDREN!”), and I loved Rom in this episode, particularly when he finally marches out on Martus with a Dabo girl in hand (“if I’m going to be cheated I can at least be cheated by family”). The most fun comes from the Bashir and O’Brien rivalry, and it’s been fun rewatching these early episodes to see the gradual progression of their relationship from loathing to frenemies to eventual friends. I also liked Keiko in this episode. Whereas she seemed to spend most of her time on DS9 whining and endlessly nagging Miles, she’s supportive and loving here, and it’s very sweet.

    There are a number of amusing moments, and I did find the episode quite amiable, but ultimately I don’t think it’s very successful. DS9 would in time deliver a number of fantastic comedy instalments, but this isn’t one of them. Although I liked the quirky, offbeat tone, it’s almost as though the writers got cold feet during the rewrites and plucked out all the big laughs and tried to make it more serious and Trek-like. Which is a shame, because it’s almost impossible to take the plot about Martus’s gaming devices affecting the laws of chance on the station seriously. It’s altogether ludicrous and, ultimately, quite pointless. The plot is resolved by Sisko and Dax phasering the devices and the episode kind of chugs to an abrupt halt, without delivering anything that felt like a satisfying ending. I was left feeling that, mildly diverting as it was, the whole thing was just a bit pointless. Rating: 5
     
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  13. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Spot on about "RIVALS". I thought it would be a fun episode when I saw Chris Sarandon from FRIGHT NIGHT and THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Given the actor, I think the blame can be put a bit more on David Livingston, the director. (Which is a rare thing for me to say... he directed some of the best episodes in the franchise, as well as the most with 62 episodes.)

    I do disagree about one thing... Keiko. While I agree that she was written great here, I don't think she was previously written in a bad light. When I was younger, I might have agreed with you. But older and married me actually finds her a great wife. She is very supportive of Miles and a good mom. Yes, her concerns and arguments can appear like nagging, but a vast majority of it is really things said out of frustration. There's a fine line between nagging and venting in frustration, and it takes being married a while to detect the difference. Keiko always was in Miles' corner. I feel it's the most realistic marriage, and probably relationship, ever depicted in STAR TREK.
     
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  14. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    Good to hear a different view of Keiko! I can see what you mean and I do like the character in general, and I think Rosalind Chao and Colm Meaney had a lovely, natural chemistry. At this point, I’m mainly going by my recollections of how she ends up being treated, but I do feel the DS9 writers didn’t have much love for the character and it shows. I feel they didn’t really treat her as a character much of the time, more just as a function (O’Brien’s wife being the primary one). I feel that of the time she’s there solely to serve the plot, which is a terrible disservice to Chao and the viewers. I think later on the series the writers stop even pretending they care by writing her out for huge stretches.
     
  15. Bad Thoughts

    Bad Thoughts Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I don't think it is entirely fair to blame the writers. Rosiland Chao limited how available she was to the series. There had indeed been some talk of folding her into the main cast in the first season, but she shot that down. At that point,they focused more on Miles relationship with Bashir and made the marriage more of a background element. Unfortunately, it meant that when they could get Chao, the focus of the story needed to be the marriage. However, it's not as if Keiko's interactions were solely with Miles. It would have been nice if there were stories that paired up Keiko with other castmembers.
     
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  16. frankieteardrop

    frankieteardrop Commander Red Shirt

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    I would have liked to see her interact with Garak. They could have bonded over gardening.
     
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  17. LadyMondegreen

    LadyMondegreen Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I think the issue some of the time is that Keiko's concerns seem pretty reasonable (and sometimes O'Brien is even being a little bit of an a-hole), but because the show follows his POV more closely than hers the framing seems to be situating her as the "nagging wife" getting in the way of whatever O'Brien's gotta do.

    I'm not really a fan of the "Keiko becomes a teacher" thing either -- teaching is a specific skill, and Keiko is a scientist. I wish that idea had been resolved with her convincing Sisko to bring someone in to start a school and then getting involved in science division stuff, even in an unofficial capacity. I think she could have had some fun interactions with Dax.
     
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  18. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    I had never heard that Chao was originally intended to be part of the main cast. You learn something new each day! Nor did I know of her availability issues.

    Except...they generally were, from what I remember. ..outside of ‘A Man Alone’, ‘In the Hands of the Prophets’ and ‘Armageddon Game’ (although the latter was focused on Miles). There were maybe another few scenes I’m forgetting. She didn’t really have any relationships with the rest of the cast, which is a shame, because you would have thought the surrogacy plot would have made her and Kira firm friends. They probably were, and we just didn’t see it. But, with a cast the size DS9 had, I guess it is unreasonable to expect all the secondary or tertiary characters to get equal development.
     
  19. ananta

    ananta Captain Captain

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    Good point. Plus, in later seasons O’Brien does kind of become something akin to a big child, I’d likely be exasperated too.

    Yeah, I thought that too. The implication is that any average Joe can be a teacher without any training and experience. I don’t think teachers would have appreciated that :P I notice that, come the second season, there’s barely any mention of her teaching.
     
  20. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That's a fair point, and easy to overlook by the time Haneek starts to become unsympathetic. It's always painful to me when I see people who are well-meaning but approach a situation in such a way that they become their own worst enemy.