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  #10681  
Old 02-13-2019, 10:19 PM
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Gravitational slingshot
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  #10682  
Old 02-13-2019, 10:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Peach View Post
But I thought his character found his voice pretty early on. He ended up being a good-to-great pairing for most of the cast, even if he didn't drive a lot of episodes.
Bashir does often kind of end up as sounding board for more interesting things going on with Garak or O'Brein, but yeah I think he does end up working well on the show.

Although Dax is often also a sounding board for Sisko and eventually Worf when an episode is not specifically about her, the episodes that do focus on her are often interesting symbiont stuff or Klingon adventures, and I'm very much there for both of those. Her being Worf's sparring partner and one of the few people who can really relate to him in his moment feeling estranged from both the empire and the federation is an interesting development for both characters, even if it's primarily about his problems. (At least so far, I'm toward the end of season 4.)
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  #10683  
Old 02-14-2019, 02:50 AM
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I go back and forth a lot on Worf in DS9. It's one of those things that, on the one hand, makes a lot of sense to do given the character and the setting. And I'm fairly neutral with regards to adding Worf to the cast. But I personally loathe his personal character arc throughout DS9, despite generally enjoying his presence and individual stories. For example, Worf as a groomzilla is simply amazing, and it's a good thing that Worf gets some career advancement after remaining stagnant for so long on the Enterprise. But as a person who partially identified with Worf as a character, seeing his personality and development of his identity take what I consider a backslide in DS9 is just... it's just really rather upsetting on the whole.

Worf is full-Klingon, but his experience is very much that of a mixed race individual. He's a man who doesn't quite feels fully at home either among humans or among Klingons as he straddles both worlds. He is obviously not human, and the Klingons never readily accept him as their's either. His Klingon heritage is something he had to learn about from afar, and he always feels he has to tip-toe around humans despite living most of his life with them and generally being accepted into their society.

Yet despite that feeling of unease, in TNG it's largely something he'd already come to terms with. It was part of his identity that he had accepted. He had built a successful life, and become integrated and loved within all the communities he had joined, be it back in his home in Minsk on Earth, or on the Enterprise. Watching him interact with pure, unbridled love and acceptance with his adopted parents is one of the most touching moments in TNG. And Worf in TNG really stands as a rather inspirational/aspirational figure. Worf is a testament to the facts that home is where you make it, that family are the people you choose, and that finding acceptance starts with fully embracing who you are and who you choose to be and loving that. That it's not just OK to come from multiple backgrounds, but that it's a source of strength.

And in DS9, Worf loses all of that for whatever reason. He loses the Enterprise and thus he feels he lost his place in the universe. An understandable impulse, but one I would have hoped had been beneath Worf. The ship itself wasn't what Worf missed, but his family and community that it housed. The ship exploded, but that family didn't go anywhere. Meanwhile, instead of being this man who combines the best aspects of both cultures and proudly presents himself as such, DS9 has Worf dive deep into being Klingon to the point where his human side is essentially shed. Some people who come from a polyethnic background do make that choice, but it's one I personally find distasteful and unfortunate as it is an implicit rejection of yourself.

Worf's whole DS9 arc is a path of rediscovery of who he is. Which, if taken out of the context of TNG, works fine. But I can't really remove that context, and it feels like a backslide. This path of personal discovery for a mixed race person works a lot better if that's the starting point and there's a fairly clear progression that happens. Spock and B'Elanna are amazing characters because of how their respective shows handle this development. But Worf starts out at a good place, and then backslides to a bad place for bad/dumb reasons.
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  #10684  
Old 02-14-2019, 04:17 AM
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I’m glad to hear the Bashir twist gets buried eventually, because I’m tired of the show talking about it constantly. And it’s at the heart of my least favorite episode so far.

Bashir works best as Garrak’s punching bag or O’Brien’s side piece.
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  #10685  
Old 02-14-2019, 05:58 AM
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On Worf- i agree with you Wist, but I’d say this slide started in late tng as well.
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  #10686  
Old 02-14-2019, 01:55 PM
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As someone who makes no conscious effort to avoid spoilers while going down Memory Alpha rabbit holes after watching an episode, I am kind of shocked I don't know what the Bashir twist is yet.
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  #10687  
Old 02-14-2019, 03:51 PM
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On Worf- i agree with you Wist, but I’d say this slide started in late tng as well.
I'm not certain I agree? I just finished S7 of TNG last night (teared up a little at the end) and the Worf episodes in there were all really good. The Season 6 episode about Worf questioning his faith and the clone-Khaless I could see as being a "Who am I??" backslide moment. But really that episode was more about reaffirming faith and opening one's mind to better understand faith versus blind servitude and adhering to strict dogma.

More so, the Season 7 episodes actually do a lot towards cementing Worf's polyethnic identity. Worf has three big episodes in Season 7 where he's the primary character of the A-plot. All of which are worth discussing in this context:

S7E11: "Parallels" - A mostly innocuous episode on the surface having Worf leap across dimensions. But under the surface, there's Worf's love life getting explored for the first serious time since K'Ehleyr. Worf cites repeatedly in the early parts of TNG that he is basically celibate because he feels human women are too frail to match up with Klingon mating/libido in a soft form of bigotry. And it's an idea he sheds after Parallels as he opens himself to the possibility that 1) his prejudices might be wrong, and 2) that there are more tender forms of love he could explore and it be just as fulfilling. I never felt great about the Worf/Troi paring because of how forced it felt, but with regards to Worf's personal growth as a person it's a very good thing actually as it gives this gruff guy moments to display tenderness and his human side.

S7E13: "Homeward" - This episode is actually a revelation for Worf as a character. Previous discussions of his childhood raised by humans was always described as trying and difficult. The implication that an unruly Klingon adapting to human society was a hard task for Worf and his family. Yet here comes Worf's human brother and he completely reverses what we think about Worf's upbringing. It turns out, Worf was the good son. Worf was obedient, self-disciplined, excelled academically, and never got into trouble. It was his human brother Nikolai who was the rascal who caused trouble, had a wild-streak, made their mother cry, dropped out of school, and was the real prodigal son. As it turns out, Worf didn't have a hard time integrating, he actually excelled at it! His "problems" growing up then were of a more emotional and existential/reflective nature of feeling unease with his place in the world. An experience that is intensely that of many mixed-race people. And him hashing things out with his quasi-estranged brother, repairing their bond, and coming to a good understanding with each other as he helps his brother find his place in the world is just an extremely positive moment for Worf and the realization of his identity as a polyethnic person.

S7E21: "Firstborn" - Star Trek fans at large hate Alexander, but I've really grown to both love him as a character and how he is used in TNG. Worf struggles with raising Alexander throughout the show, and it's always used to help him grow as a character and expand his perspective. In a lot of Alexander's early episodes, Alexander's willfulness and troubles as a child is used to teach Worf patience and love. But this episode is different, because it specifically is about Alexander's identity as a mixed race person. Worf worries that Alexander doesn't know or appreciate enough of his Klingon culture, and struggles with both respecting his son and respecting his son's mixed heritage and the will of his departed babymama. In the episode he contemplates handing his son over to a family retainer so that he might go to a Klingon school and receive a Klingon education to catch up with his 'deficient' knowledge of Klingon culture and combat ability. And the big twist of the episode is that this family retainer is secretly Alexander from the future, who has traveled back in time to influence himself to become more Klingon and to become a strong warrior. And it's an extremely powerful moment for the two of them when Worf sees the full breath of the situation. Not just how he sees the kind of lasting psychological damage he is potentially inflicting upon his son by forcing the ethnic identity of his choosing onto him, but how wonderful and amazing his son turns out to be and how there's real merit to this other definition of being Klingon that young Alexander is exploring. And this is big. BIG. It's the culmination of all of Worf's progression as a character. It's his moment of clarity where he fully appreciates the synthesis of cultures that have come together in him and his son, and where he is able to not just come to terms with his mixed identity, but to fully embrace it, love it, and cherish it as something special and worth encouraging. Thinking about it and writing it out actually has me verklempt!
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  #10688  
Old 02-14-2019, 06:31 PM
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This might be adding too many discussions to the pot at once, but I just watched the episode that introduces Section 31 and I can see why the concept annoys people.

It could have been interesting if Section 31 were created as a temporary measure against the Dominion which then got out of hand, but retconning it to the original Federation charter is pretty crummy. DS9 already did a good job in earlier seasons problematizing the Federation, and they didn't really need to do more, or at least didn't need to undermine the whole enterprise from its inception.

Does Enterprise do anything interesting with the concept?
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  #10689  
Old 02-14-2019, 07:41 PM
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Not really no. It's wrapped up in the Temporal Cold War/Prime Directive stuff.
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  #10690  
Old 02-14-2019, 07:58 PM
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I thought DS9 Section 31 was fine - compelling even. They peg that particularly malignant, " you don't think about us, but we know what's best for society, and we have the machete-armed death-squads to back it up" CIA vibe super well.

I've never watched Enterprise, but I detested how Section 31 was used in Into Darkness and Discovery. Because, in those, it just becomes a metaphor for the US Security State - broad, deeply implanted, and on the absolutely cutting edge of technology. It's relevant in our modern and recent historical context, sure. Except👏the👏Federation👏isn't👏a👏proxy👏for👏the👏United 👏States👏. I mean, of course, it is, but there's always been a incredibly aspirational element to the Federation - it isn't merely a vessel to transport our current society a couple centuries into the future, but rather to imagine how we would be transformed - often embarrassingly and incorrectly! - by that same span of time.

In DS9, S31 is a black-box side-project - a little malicious brain-trust the Federation keeps in its back pocket, because humans can't quite eject some sort of fundamental xenophobia. But subsequent writers have taken it and turned it into this vast conspiracy under-girding everything because 9/11* and its fallout broke all of our brains. But Star Trek has explored how we navigate a complex and conflicted universe - often embarrassingly and incorrectly! - with nuance and dignity, without just riding on "myabe you nede to immerse urself in draknes to really grsap the lite" stuff.

*I'm especially looking at Truther Roberto Orci with this one.
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  #10691  
Old 02-14-2019, 09:01 PM
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It's been a few months since I watched those episodes, but I don't fully agree on that take there with S31. At least with regards to how it's OK in DS9 but bad elsewhere. Its depiction in DS9 is of this super black ops, MiB style, nobody can know we exist, exist outside of the legally sanctioned government kind of deal. The scope and breadth of S31 is unknown to us as viewers because they only allow Bashir the most limited of glimpses into its operations, but they're powerful and well connected enough to have agents placed at the highest levels of the Romulan government. DS9 hints quite strongly they are this vast conspiracy.

ENT doesn't really do much crazy with the idea. They're a Starfleet intel body whose presence and workings are top secret. But Starfleet at this time is a minuscule baby compared to what it will become. The S31 in ENT doesn't really do much besides attempt to pull some strings politically and recruit agents within Starfleet to keep them apprised of information and perhaps carry out limited ops when they deem it necessary.

Into Darkness is just a garbage pile, especially that it's now an orphaned/dead alternate universe, so it's hardly even worth considering.

Now DISCO - this is something kinda interesting. Specifically because this week's episode talks quite a bit about S31, and it leads me to some speculative conclusions with regards to your specific issues Peach considering how can something like this organization coexist with the aspirational image we want Star Trek society to represent.
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  #10692  
Old 02-16-2019, 08:20 PM
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Section 31 didn't interest me that much. There was a lot going on in DS9 at that point, and it didn't need that extra plot baggage. Then again, I kind of liked the first few episodic seasons before Sisko shaved his head and got increasingly intense. He had a strong, steadily evolving relationship with his son, but that hit a brick wall by the fifth season and Jake became less important in subsequent episodes.

Of course, there's much to be said for the Dominion arc... it gave us those two really good episodes where Worf and Garak were on a Jem H'dar prison ship, and of course, Demar's growth from a forgettable bit player to a more complex character... sadistic in that typical Cardassian way, but a cunning tactician and ultimately an honorable soldier.

I feel like Deep Space Nine started out as one kind of series but turned into an entirely different one by its conclusion. Perhaps it owes Voyager a debt for that, because that show gave DS9 a chance to split from Star Trek tradition and find its own identity.
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  #10693  
Old 02-18-2019, 09:53 PM
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Voyager's The Chute definitely inspired a ton of Harry Kim/Tom Paris slash fic.

The creators were probably oblivious but . . . it's so over the top that it kind of makes you wonder if someone involved knew what they were doing.
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  #10694  
Old 02-18-2019, 11:17 PM
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Voyager's False Profits made it very clear that it was a sequel to some TNG episode that I was completely blanking on. I looked it up afterward and realized why:

It's the one with both an extremely close up and extremely goopy Troi foot massage and also a completely over the top scene where Troi and Beverly stretch in bizarre boob emphasizing leotards while the camera zooms in on their breasts and butt cracks.

I remember that I watched it with my husband and it was on such a hilarious level of horny that we just couldn't stop laughing at how ridiculous and jarring it was. It was apparently directed by the same guy who did Measure of a Man the previous season. I guess that it was like, "Well, you made an all-time classic, so this time you get free reign to film two scenes of some real fetish material. Just go wild!" One of the all time weirdest TNG episodes just for those scenes, and I apparently lost all memory of anything else about it. Apparently it involved some Ferengi and a wormhole, but . . . it's always the goopy foot massage and softcore leotard episode to me.
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  #10695  
Old 02-20-2019, 07:23 PM
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Just watched the DS9 Season Six finale and hrm.

Hrm.

A major character death to raise the stakes makes sense, and Dax is the obvious candidate, because if you feature an alien with multiple life cycles you want to kill them at least once. And I think the actor wanted to leave or something? Whatever, the point is that the death makes sense.

But, like, that? She turns around and immediately dies? Here's an idea, show: cut that stupid scene with Bashir and Quark at the bar and replace it with one of Jadzia going down swinging in a fistfight with a god.
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  #10696  
Old 02-21-2019, 02:29 PM
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So the story of QPid is just Q being jealous of Vash, because Picard has feelings for her and not for him, so he has some fun with the crew. I really like the interpretation of Q crushing on Picard, it works really well. I know, people don't like that episode, but it was a lot of fun to watch. Except for the part at the beginning, were Picard gets nervous because Vash shows up. Doesn't really seems like him.

Devils Due (the one where a woman cons a whole planet and acts like she is the devil) is pretty great. Devil lady was pretty awesome.

Night Terrors is the one where Troi dreams of floating threw some fog and screams to something "Where ARE you? I have to FIND you!". It's weird, and pretty funny, and I just can't blame Sirtis for this. Only Steward could make this sound not dumb. Though I would like to hear Worf scream it angrily at this dumb void. Also, I really need Jellico to show up, so that Troi finally starts to wear the regular uniform, instead of this weird thing she wears.

The Nth Degree is the second Barclay episode, where (mild spoilers) he gets super intelligent. In the process, he also becomes a giant douchebag, who acts like he is way better than everyone else. After he fuses his brain with the computer is fine, but before that he is just obnoxious. Couldn't the aliens have given him some sort of empathy? I get that this can easily happen with people who have their problems with social stuff when they get some courage (I guess pickup artists fall into that category), but I liked Barclay in his first appearance. I would have preferred the show to indicate that he is actually is decent guy, but I guess not. Oh well.
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  #10697  
Old 02-21-2019, 04:09 PM
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DS9's The Assignment is a really strong one-off episode that also is a reminder of just how underutilized Rosalind Chao was most of the time. She really nails the performance of her possession and is clearly having fun doing it. So many scripts write Keiko to be a very one-note character, and here she finally gets an opportunity to really steal the show. (I'm also basically there for any episode where Rom gets a lot to do.)

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Also, I really need Jellico to show up, so that Troi finally starts to wear the regular uniform, instead of this weird thing she wears.
Yeah, I think it's funny that Jellico is kind of positioned as a heel at first, but he does the show a huge favor by giving Troi a costume upgrade that sticks. Her cleavage emphasizing counselor outfit was like the last vestige of the TOS style women's costumes from the start of TNG hanging on for dear life. Thank you, Jellico.
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  #10698  
Old 02-21-2019, 04:27 PM
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Originally Posted by FelixSH View Post
The Nth Degree is the second Barclay episode, where (mild spoilers) he gets super intelligent. In the process, he also becomes a giant douchebag, who acts like he is way better than everyone else. After he fuses his brain with the computer is fine, but before that he is just obnoxious. Couldn't the aliens have given him some sort of empathy? I get that this can easily happen with people who have their problems with social stuff when they get some courage (I guess pickup artists fall into that category), but I liked Barclay in his first appearance. I would have preferred the show to indicate that he is actually is decent guy, but I guess not. Oh well.
It's my favorite adaptation of Flowers For Algernon, that's for sure.
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  #10699  
Old 02-21-2019, 04:37 PM
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Just watched the DS9 Season Six finale and hrm.

Hrm.
Hrm indeed. Guess she was just that eager to become the bartender on Becker.

In way of warning, everything they do with Dukat from this point forward is rushed and poorly conceived. They should have given him a top hat and a curly mustache to twirl, because that's the kind of character he becomes.
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  #10700  
Old 02-21-2019, 06:59 PM
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I know, people don't like that episode, but...
Huh? This is the first I'm hearing of this. I've never known anyone to hate this episode, it's a classic. And it features the best version of Worf.

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DS9's The Assignment is a really strong one-off episode that also is a reminder of just how underutilized Rosalind Chao was most of the time.
I love Keiko O'Brien so much. I wish she was allowed to play a Chinese character though. On a side note: I've often found that the way people talk about Keiko is, like Janeway, a really good litmus test for gauging whether or not I want to be interacting with a person.

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Hrm indeed. Guess she was just that eager to become the bartender on Becker.
I did some reading into this not that long ago and no, that was really not the case. She wanted to stay on DS9 but in a reduced role, and Rick Berman was a complete sleaze/asshat and kicked her off the show and killed her character. The more I learn about Rick Berman, the more I wish he was struck by lightning 30 years ago.
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  #10701  
Old 02-21-2019, 07:16 PM
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Originally Posted by WisteriaHysteria View Post
Huh? This is the first I'm hearing of this. I've never known anyone to hate this episode, it's a classic. And it features the best version of Worf.
I remember watching it and thinking that despite a few good moments it was a pretty so-so episode. And for what it's worth Jammer's Reviews gave it a mere 1 star out of 4.
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  #10702  
Old 02-22-2019, 04:57 AM
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In way of warning, everything they do with Dukat from this point forward is rushed and poorly conceived. They should have given him a top hat and a curly mustache to twirl, because that's the kind of character he becomes.
Yeah. They really should have killed him off in "Waltz". His character arc was complete, going from a stock bad guy to a complex anti-villain, culminating in the loss of his power, his daughter, and his sanity. It was obvious that they didn't know what to do with him after that.
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  #10703  
Old 02-22-2019, 09:53 PM
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I did some reading into this not that long ago and no, that was really not the case. She wanted to stay on DS9 but in a reduced role, and Rick Berman was a complete sleaze/asshat and kicked her off the show and killed her character. The more I learn about Rick Berman, the more I wish he was struck by lightning 30 years ago.
What I heard (and this could be wrong, you know how internet rumors are) was that Terry Farrell gambled on holding out for a big raise, and lost that bet. What you're saying makes more sense, especially after #metoo... why would she willingly leave the show that late into its run? I haven't gotten all the dirt on Rick Berman, but it wouldn't surprise me to learn that he was acting inappropriately on the set, and that it made Farrell too uncomfortable to continue.
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  #10704  
Old 02-24-2019, 07:53 AM
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Watched three medium quality episodes. The first was kinda dumb, the second was kind of good and I love what it deals with but found it's answer less than satisfying and the third was very silly and dumb but not without merits. I will say in the latter two, Captain Sisko has some moments when I feel the character would fit right in with a totalitarian dystopia.

The Storyteller: The A-Plot here is a bit week, with O'Brien and Bashir travelling to an isolated village to help some guy whose job is to scare off a spooky cloud. When I saw the title was called Storyteller and that the village needed an old man to ward off a monster, I thought the premise was going to be that this was a metaphorical monster and it would be an FX light episode where the people feel their fates are tied to the outcome of an oft repeated and changing story from the past and maybe there was a fear that the new interpretation might signal a change they aren't ready for. The actual answer is dumber as a magic crystal summons a monster made of fear in order to keep the village together and they need to ward it off with their love or something. Only the village storyteller knows this and everyone thinks this is a literal threatening monster. And neither O'Brien nor Bashir are like "hey, maybe you should tell people you manufactured this threat and have been using it to Watchmen your community for generations.
Because that seems kind of shitty." But nope, it's goodbye.


In the B-Plot, a young community leader learns lessons from Nog, thanks to the rules of acquisition and his solid (no pun intended) Odo-based oatmeal prank. Also, Nog casually reveals to Jake that Quark has ACCESS TO THE SECURITY ON DS9! And Odo decides not to follow up on "how did you get into my office." *shrug*

Progress: This is a much stronger episode. I feel like the topic of "you sold out, Kira" has been broached before, but in those episodes, they are former freedom fighters turned terrorists or whatever. Her is becomes much more of a dilemma. The person she is opposing is a genuinely good, if frustrating and a bit sexist, person. It's a nice human story. It doesn't make much sense that he wouldn't be forcibly removed after strangling that one guy and the other two are but it doesn't matter. I'm still trying to decide if the show has a definitive answer for Kira's problem where she has to choose between fighting for the little guy and having to work within a system, by its rules, even if they upset her. I certainly like not knowing the right choice here and I can't decide if we are supposed to feel Kira made "the right choice" or simply "a choice." Still, burning the dude's house down seems a bit much, even if it makes for a dramatic action. But I guess as much as I like the concept and some individual moments, it was just an OK episode altogether. That said, I was way too into Jake and Nog's silly b-plot involving buying and selling stuff. One extra really sells her confusion when Jake gives Nog a celebratory fist pump.

If Wishes Were Horses - This is a very silly episode but not awful like "Move Along Home". The one guy playing the baseball player is doing a good job looking guileless and a little confused in the first act. Strangely, the description on Netflix is "the crew discovers unusually high thoron emissions". I get not wanted to spoil shit but it seems ridiculous. Jokes about thoron emissions abounded through the episode from me and JBear. It actually touches on some ideas I wish were explored better, like attachments to people we've never met or never existed and how that might seem alien and confusing to a truly alien race. But a lot of it is really silly, albeit watchably so. A lot of techno-babble also for an episode where it's all "quick, use your imaginations to wish the problem away".
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  #10705  
Old 02-24-2019, 08:10 AM
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estragon estragon is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Unusual View Post
Strangely, the description on Netflix is "the crew discovers unusually high thoron emissions".
The staff doing the Netflix descriptions for DS9 definitely watched the cold open and called it a day.
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  #10706  
Old 02-24-2019, 08:14 AM
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Johnny Unusual Johnny Unusual is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by estragon View Post
The staff doing the Netflix descriptions for DS9 definitely watched the cold open and called it a day.
Not even all of it. The cold open involves O'Brien finding Rumplestiltskin in his daughter's room.
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  #10707  
Old 02-24-2019, 11:50 AM
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estragon estragon is offline
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Apparently it was going to be a Leprechaun until Colm Meaney put his foot down.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colm Meaney
Every Irish actor I know has worked his entire life to overcome the stereotype of Irish people and leprechauns.
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  #10708  
Old 02-24-2019, 12:45 PM
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WisteriaHysteria WisteriaHysteria is offline
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I watched all of these on Amazon Prime and everything is better there. The description for that episode is:

“When members of the station find their fantasies coming to life, it becomes a prelude to a very real danger, which threatens everyone.”

It also has wonderful IMDb integration where at any given moment during the show, you can pause and see info for every actor on camera, no matter how obscure, and click through to see where else they’re from.
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  #10709  
Old 02-24-2019, 01:27 PM
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Johnny Unusual Johnny Unusual is offline
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This comes up a lot. Jonathan Banks was on a recently viewed episode and livened up a weak plot.
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  #10710  
Old 02-27-2019, 02:48 AM
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FelixSH FelixSH is offline
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I'm watching "The Game", the episode were Wesley visits and everyone else plays this weird game, where you move discs into tornadoes, because no one on the writing staff has actually played an actual videogame. I generally don't understand the hate for Wesley, here it's really bad.

Also, is this a Very Special Episode about the dangers of videogames? And why is the game so weird?
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