Star Trek: Deep Space 9 Season 1 “Babel” and “Captive Pursuit”

Our outfits are magnificent, k?

Our outfits are magnificent, k?

I’ve completed my re-watch of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” Now it’s time to start Deep Space Nine! I am much less familiar with this show, though I’m pretty sure I’ve seen about 80-90% of the episodes. It’s been so long that I’m sure it will all feel brand new. My wife has never seen the show. She and I will go through, review every episode, and give commentary and a grade from A-F. There are SPOILERS for each episode below. Without further adieu, here’s:

“Babel”

Synopsis

Chief O’Brien continues to try to catch up on all the work that needs to be done to get Deep Space Nine back in working condition. As he does so, however, people start getting sick, and it looks like there is a booby trap that was left on the station. Odo and others try to solve the problem as people continue to lose their capacity to speak and understand communication. Finally, Major Kira uses some unorthodox methods to convince the one possible link to tell them how to cure the virus. All is saved!

Commentary

The main thing I want to say here is that I found the episode kinda boring. It was hard to take seriously a threat to the entire space station this early in the show. Of course they’re not going to let so many main characters be unable to talk with each other for the rest of the series. There was almost no suspense here. The plot itself wasn’t a bad one–it definitely makes you wonder whether there are a lot more traps scattered around the station. Heck, with the Cardassians you expect that to happen! It just felt predictable and “ho hum” throughout. Kira’s saving everything with her probably illegal kidnapping of a doctor was the only thing that spiced it up.

Grade: C- “It was a bit boring, despite attempts to make it suspenseful.”

Wife’s Grade and Comment: B+ “It was good and fairly creative, but the suspension of the disbelief was a bit much.”

“Captive Pursuit”

Synopsis

A man arrives at Deep Space Nine through the wormhole, and appears to be in great fear, wanting to arm himself and flee at the earliest opportunity. He is locked up for trying to break into a weapons cache. Meanwhile, an aggressive ship shows up and beams intruders on board the station finally ending their attack when they discover the man who’d come earlier. Turns out that that man’s function in their culture is to flee to the best of the ability, and provide a good hunt. Disgusted at his capture, they consign him to humiliation back home. O’Brien, however, has other plans, and busts him out of prison, releasing him back to his ship to keep the hunt going.

Commentary

First, let me say that this was the episode that really hammered home that costumes on DS9 are really well done. The costumes for the people from the Gamma Quadrant were pretty spectacular. A little bit campy sci-fi, a touch of old Trek, and a bunch of flair. I enjoyed them very much.

Anyway, the plot isn’t what drives this episode, and that’s good because it’s pretty bare-bones. There’s a guy running from lots of people chasing him. But wait, turns out he is supposed to be chased in their society so that’s okay, right? Well O’Brien doesn’t think so, and he worked with the “Tosk” to help him keep running. It’s straightforward, but it is also action-packed and intense, with a touch of silliness mixed in. The hardest part of the episode to swallow, to be honest, was O’Brien just throwing the Prime Directive out the window. Of course, his twisted logic actually makes some kind of sense, so maybe that’s okay too. It’s good to see DS9 execute this kind of “fun” mixer episode so early in the series.

Grade: B+ “It’s enjoyable, but apparently O’Brien also discards Starfleet regulations at the drop of a hat as well.”

Wife’s Grade and Comment: A- “Chief O’Brien clearly takes Riker for his role model instead of Picard in his pursuit of the Prime Directive.”

Links

J.W. Wartick- Always Have a Reason– Check out my “main site” which talks about philosophy of religion, theology, and Christian apologetics (among other random topics). I love science fiction so that comes up integrated with theology fairly frequently as well. I’d love to have you follow there, too!

Be sure to follow me on Twitter for discussion of posts, links to other pages of interest, random talk about theology/philosophy/apologetics/movies/scifi/sports and more!

Star Trek: DS9- For more episode reviews, follow this site and also click this link to read more (scroll down as needed)! Drop me a comment to let me know what you thought!

SDG.

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Star Trek: Deep Space 9 Season 1 “Past Prologue” and “A Man Alone”

Look, I'm handing you this case on a platter. Can you please figure out what I'm talking about!?

Look, I’m handing you this case on a platter. Can you please figure out what I’m talking about!?

I’ve completed my re-watch of “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” Now it’s time to start Deep Space Nine! I am much less familiar with this show, though I’m pretty sure I’ve seen about 80-90% of the episodes. It’s been so long that I’m sure it will all feel brand new. My wife has never seen the show. She and I will go through, review every episode, and give commentary and a grade from A-F. There are SPOILERS for each episode below. Without further adieu, here’s:

“Past Prologue”

Synopsis

Tahna Los is rescued by DS9’s crew from a ship being pursued by Cardassians. The Cardassians demand his return because he is a terrorist, but Sisko grants him at least temporary asylum. Meanwhile, the Klingon Duras sisters show up on station and it is unclear why they are there. Dr. Bashir, however, forms a friendship with a Cardassian on the station, Elim Garak, who is ostensibly a tailor and clothier. Garak’s repeated and pointed directions lead Bashir to help uncover a possible plot that the Duras sisters are helping Los obtain materials for an explosive. Major Kira goes with Los, who ultimately wants to destroy the wormhole, thus keeping Bajor out of international meddling over the economic prosperity that wormhole would bring. Kira, saddened by his betrayal of trust, foils his plan, and he is given over to Starfleet authorities.

Commentary

This is another jam-packed episode, which does make sense given it being so early in the series. There are several threads here, I have to say I enjoyed pretty much all of them. Garak, the Cardassian tailor, is a fun addition to the station and I hope he keeps showing up. The way that he continually talks in a way that effectively punts to more meaning is exciting. Moreover, the cluelessness of the adventure-seeking Bashir was a delight to behold. I also enjoyed the continued look at political turmoil. It’s not like having the Cardassians pull of the region suddenly stabilized Bajor. I’m sure this is a theme throughout the show if I have any memory of it whatsoever, and I’m excited to see more.

The tie-ins to TNG continue as well, as those Klingon sisters show up on DS9, clearly up to no good. Can they really be Klingon if they have no honor? File that away to think about later.

I felt that this gave a good look into the fact that the Cardassian-Bajoran conflict has broader ramifications in the region. It helped to set the stage for future conflict. I look forward to learning more.

Grade: A- “An exciting set-up with great payoff that shows continued political turmoil in the region. It’s just a tad predictable, though.”

Wife’s Grade and Comment: B+ “The story was overall good, but there were a few things that just didn’t add up.”

“A Man Alone”

Synopsis

Ibudan, a former smuggler who killed a Cardassian officer, shows up on the station. Odo recognizes him and wants to arrest him, but Sisko says he cannot be arrested if he hasn’t committed a crime on the station. Odo relents, but Ibudan turns up dead, and Odo is the prime suspect. As they scramble to figure out who committed the murder, more and more evidences surfaces that implicates Odo. However, it turns out that Ibudan cloned himself and killed the clone, and Odo takes him into custody for murder. A side story follows Keiko O’Brien’s struggle to find a place to fit on the station, and she does when she founds a school.

Commentary

Jake and his Ferengi buddy, Nog! I remember reading the heck out of the children’s series for DS9 that almost entirely followed their adventures around the station, so I admit I have very fond memories of them. Hopefully the show keeps featuring interactions between the two that build their characters. I also enjoyed the subplot of Keiko O’Brien setting up a school on board the station.

The main of plot one gives a great mystery that kept me in the dark for the most part but didn’t just have some kind of deus ex machina moment that is all too common in science fiction mysteries. Yes, it was a clone, but there were enough hints along the way that you could figure it out if you paid attention. The mystery also serves to distract from the episode’s major, glaring error. Namely, there is little-to-no motive for setting Odo up to take the blame for a murder. Sure, getting rid of the changeling security chief may make it easier on this specific smuggler for one time, but Sisko already told Odo he couldn’t just arrest the guy for no reason. So going through all the trouble to frame Odo seems superfluous. Still, as long as you don’t think too hard about it, it’s a solid episode that is a lot of fun.

Grade: A- “It’s a good mystery episode that keeps you guessing for most of the duration.”

Wife’s Grade and Comment: B+ “It was a good way to show us more about the individual characters while still having an interesting plot.”

Links

J.W. Wartick- Always Have a Reason– Check out my “main site” which talks about philosophy of religion, theology, and Christian apologetics (among other random topics). I love science fiction so that comes up integrated with theology fairly frequently as well. I’d love to have you follow there, too!

Be sure to follow me on Twitter for discussion of posts, links to other pages of interest, random talk about theology/philosophy/apologetics/movies/scifi/sports and more!

Star Trek: DS9- For more episode reviews, follow this site and also click this link to read more (scroll down as needed)! Drop me a comment to let me know what you thought!

SDG.

One Sentence Book Review: “The Signature of All Things” by Elizabeth Gilbert

The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert

Review

Though beautifully written, The Signature of All Things meanders aimlessly for hundreds of pages and ultimately ends up as a strange, unfulfilling read.

Links

One Sentence Book Reviews– Read more one sentence book reviews here. I’ve decided to do one for every book I read, which is a lot. I got started on 5/14/16 so this list will grow from there.

J.W. Wartick- Always Have a Reason– Check out my “main site” which talks about philosophy of religion, theology, and Christian apologetics (among other random topics). I love science fiction so that comes up integrated with theology fairly frequently as well. I’d love to have you follow there, too!

Be sure to follow me on Twitter for discussion of posts, links to other pages of interest, random talk about theology/philosophy/apologetics/movies/scifi/sports and more!

SDG.