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Fenn
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 9:36am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S4: The Quickening

My partner's been tearing through DS9 over the past week or so -- he's skipped an episode or few, mostly the Ferengi ones, but he's still watching the vast majority of 'em. I have no idea how he's almost finished season 4 already. (Probably because he doesn't spend half his DS9 time writing up comments on this site.) At this rate, we'll be watching the finale together...!

He's been enjoying it, but with a big caveat: so far, he's absolutely *hated* Bashir. He wrote up a half-serious half-joking character ranking list (with Odo at the top) that had Bashir right at the bottom underneath "unnamed background extra #214". He has been thoroughly irritated by his chatter and his status as Series' Designated Horndog, and has said in no uncertain terms: "hey fenn if bashir and dax get together at some point, it's in your best interest not to tell me, because I will drop this series like a brick".* **

Anyway, when I heard he had 'The Quickening' coming up next, I made a bet with him that he would like Bashir in this episode. The bet's stake is... one steak, bought for me if he ended up liking Bashir and bought for him if he didn't.

One episode later... he owes me a steak. Only "a very mild steak", but hey -- I won the bet, and he's developed a very mild liking for Bashir now. Win/win.

In the process of posting about this, I've come to realise I never actually left a comment on my runthrough, so let me just say I really love this one. Bashir is at his finest when dedicated to healing, no matter how difficult it may be. His dynamic with Dax is a lot better now -- the awkward pickup attempt phase has ended, letting them settle into something comfortably platonic. I love how the two complement each other here, with Dax as the "worldly" one translating for Bashir off in his own little medical motormouth world. She gives him the push he needs to go from being self-absorbed to being truly selfless -- staying on the planet, no matter what, until the cure is found.

I'm with Jammer on loving the episode's final shot. I remember watching that, expecting Bashir to wade into the crowd and the adulation... but no, he watches, happy for the long-awaited vaccine to take up all the attention instead of himself. As it should be.

Also his teddy bear story is sweet as hell. Nominating Kukalaka for best character in the Star Trek franchise.

* He added a caveat to his "Dax + Bashir = drop the series" ultimatum halfway through watching 'The Wire': he said he'd drop the series not because he hates Bashir, but because him being with Dax would mean Bashir's not being true to himself. Because he belongs with Garak instead. Clearly.

** SPOILERS I'm aware that spoilers spoilers Dax spoilers Bashir spoilers spoilers season 7... though definitely not in the way he'd imagined it. Neither of us have reached that point yet, though.
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Top Hat
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 9:01am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

I almost get the sense that "working directly for the state" and "existing in society" have thin distinction in Star Trek, which is pretty socialist. It can't quite be communist in Marx's strict sense since there are still leaders, private enterprise, personal property, inheritance rights, etc.

But yeah, they zigzag like crazy on a lot of this. Take this exchange in "The Cloud" about Paris's experience in non-holographic France:

PARIS: I found this place just after my pocket was picked walking by the harbour.
KIM: Somebody picked your pocket? On Earth?
PARIS: Oh, they just do it for tourists. They give it back. Most of the time.

Pocket picked of what?
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Jason R.
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 8:47am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

"Well, it is certainly closer to an (ideal) communist society than a capitalistic one. The state provides every basic need(food, health care, living space, free education) and also controls the means of production, no money, most people work for the state.
Sounds pretty communistic to me."

Well except there's no evidence that anyone works for the state except maybe in Starfleet and in a few other instances.

Incidentally, I agree with Omicron that a true post-scarcity society renders ideologies like communism and capitalism obsolete. If a replicator can manufacture anything from food to tools and machines (including other replicators!) the state can't (and doesn't) control the means of production - pretty much everyone does.

Not suggesting that individuals are making everything themselves but then again, we have to infer from some episodes that money isn't completely gone either.
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Top Hat
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 8:40am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ship

Yikes, I sort of helped trigger this exchange and now I can't bring myself to do more than skim it. It sure would have helped if the writers had supplied a better reason for Sisko to be on a runabout deep in the Gamma Quadrant than that he's leading a quantity surveying mission, right?
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Jamie Mann
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 8:17am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ship

> NO! You still ignored my contractor argument. Again if I might add...
Contractors? I saw your comment but figured I'd typed enough for one night…

It's certainly a possible solution, though Worf's comments strongly suggested that this would be a purely Federation endeavour.

Anyhow, let's go wibbly wobbly timey wimey back to the cold war, and look at trade between the USA and USSR. There was always some degree of trade between the two, both legitimate (Vodka, oil) and black market (Levi jeans, cigarettes, etc). But anything with military applications (e.g. technology, uranium) was strictly verboten and both sides came down hard on anyone they caught.

It's fairly safe to assume that whatever unobtanium Star Fleet was looking for was for military use. And this is the Dominion we're talking about: if you're caught doing something they don't like, the default response is to kill you, find and kill your family and then track down your home planet to drop a dinosaur killer on it and release a tailored virus to torture the survivors for generations to come. As a warning to others, because they're nice like that.

Is there really going to be anyone willing to challenge the Dominion that way? It's unlikely that anyone from the Gamma quadrant would take the risk, and anyone from the Alpha quadrant would have to weigh up the risks of being destroyed or (at best) trapped in the Gamma quadrant if the war kicks off and/or the wormhole is destroyed.

> You do realize that the USA does all that towards their allies, the Europeans. It is kind of a joke in Europe. For example the US embassy in Berlin has huge spy stuff on it's roof

It’s all part of the Great Game (which nearly destroyed Europe when it helped to trigger WW1, but I digress). And I had much fun wandering around Teufelsberg last year, and hearing the reason why Berlin had a ferris wheel for so long ;)

But this is where Star Trek takes the “political dominance” struggle of the Cold War and amps it up. The Dominion isn’t interested in any form of co-existence: you toe their party line or they destroy you. As highlighted a few episodes earlier on with the plot to have the Klingons and Federation destroy each other, and as again highlighted just a few episodes later with the attempted sun-buster trick.

The closest analogy is perhaps the very loosely proxied Korean and Vietnam wars, but with one side actively prepared to use nukes. Which thankfully, the USA and USSR always pulled back from.

> You can mine your own territory as much as you want. There are numerous states who use minefields who are not planing to go to war or are at war.

I’m struggling to think of any scenarios where you’d use a landmine without wanting to go to war or prevent an invasion (which arguably is also a war, albeit more one-sided). After all, a mine has one single purpose: it kills. And before you bring up the DMZ between North and South Korea, that definitely falls into the latter category: they’re still technically at war and NK often fires shells over the border and has attempted invasion several times. I’ve wandered through the tunnels they were going to use to bring their troops and tanks through!

(there’s also the horror of the mines left over in places like DRC and Vietnam; it’s more than a bit of a shame that the Korean DMZ is the main reason the USA refuses to condemn and ban them…)

> And about the drug thing. You do realize that you basically cannot be an US air force pilot on an aircraft carrier if you refuse to take drugs. *cough* Dexedrine *cough*

There’s a bit of a difference between soldiers taking amphetamines, and force-bred, pre-programmed shock troopers who die if their magic chems are withdrawn. Hopefully, we’ll never go any further towards the latter in the real world!

> They only know that they are 3 weeks away from the nearest Dominion outpost

No, they know that they’re 3 weeks away from the nearest *known* Dominion outpost. And TBH, the more I think about that, the less sense it makes. How can they be a week away from the wormhole /and/ three weeks away from the Dominion? I don’t think we ever get a clear statement as to how far the Dominion is away from the wormhole, but this suggests two main possibilities:
1) The planet is in the opposite direction to the Dominion (i.e. the Dominion is two weeks away from the wormhole)
2) The planet is en route to the Dominion (i.e the Dominion is four weeks away from the wormhole)

1) seems more likely, but that’d mean it’d be even easier for the Dominion to intercept any traffic, as they could just amble over whenever they receive notification that the wormhole has opened, and arrive at the wormhole just in time for the Federation ships to return from their two-week round trip, all slow, laden with heavy ores and easy targets.

> "Certainly, it would have been sensible to prepare for the potential arrival of the Jem Hadar as best as possible - and to put as much resource as possible into studying the ship"
> That is what they did until the other ship arrived.

No, they faffed around burying the bodies - something which is not part of Jem Hadar culture and (from a military point of view) a huge waste of potential research material. I’d hope they at least stored some samples on the runabo… oh wait, it was destroyed ;)

> would imply that it could... be many things. What it means is that it is not a standard attack ship.
Suffice to say that if something is different, then it’s potentially more valuable to it’s owners. Or it could just be a garbage scow. Either way, the sensible risk assessment would be to assume that it’s more valuable, and that the owners are more likely to want it back.

(Fundamentally, the whole idea of the dominion letting the Federation take the ship is a bit ridiculous - from the Enigma machine to the A-bomb and the space race, in an era of industrial (cold) war, having a technological edge and/or limiting enemy knowledge of your capabilities is absolutely key)

> The Dominion ships can still not fly faster than warp 9.9. and logic dictates that three weeks away means at maximum speed because if it doesn't than why use a measurement of time not distance. In universe the writers wanted to indicate: "A ship would need three weeks from the nearest Dominion outpost."

Like I said above, the more I think about the “three weeks” thing, the less sense it makes - and not just geographically. Over on Memory Alpha, it suggests that standard Jem Hadar ships cruise at warp 7 - or approx. 656c, according to the Oukda warp scale. Runabouts travel at warp 5, or 213c. And the Enterprise and Discovery top out at warp 9.975, or approx. 2100c.

(Then too, it’s pretty canon that ships can’t travel at maximum warp for extended periods, due to the stress it places on the ship’s systems…)

So, which are we talking about?

Warp 5? That 3 week journey would only take a Jem Hadar ship 1 week, or just over half a day for the Enterprise
Warp 7? That 3 week journey would only take the Enterprise 1 week, or about ten weeks for the runabout
Warp 9.975? That 3 week journey would take a Jem Hadar ship about ten weeks - or /thirty/ weeks for a runabout


The most likely - and sensible - explanation that it was based on warp 7. But that then means a high-warp capable ship would be able to arrive in a matter of hours.

Worse, the week it’d take for the runabout to return to the wormhole at warp 5 can be done in about 2 days at warp 7, or just a few hours at warp 9.975. And why would the Defiant also take a week to get to the planet? Surely they won’t just amble over at warp 5?

To be fair, in the end it’s just a stupid throwaway line which is meant to help justify Sisco’s decision. It’s just /incredibly/ stupid, given the exponential nature of warp speed.

> Again, they only appear so quickly because it is important but it could have just been some random troop transporter.
A cursory inspection of the ship would indicate this, and if it was just a troop transporter, the benefits of salvaging it would be reduced. And this should also be factored in the risk assessment.

> " If not, then at least you've gotten something useful out of it and there's little risk of the entire team being wiped out."
> I thought that the shuttle gets destroyed shortly after they arrive at the ship.
No, it gets destroyed after the team had time to inform DS9 of what was going on and request the Defiant after their attempts to tow the ship with the runabout’s tractor beam failed. They also had time to recover and bury all the bodies they’d found. Faff, faff, faff...

> Yes but the Defiant is a week away. Dominion three weeks. Plus they only know that the Defiant is heading for the Gamma Quadrant not where they are going. Plus the Defiant has cloak.

As per above, the timings are all whacky, unless all ships travel at the same speed all the time. And the Defiant may be able to cloak on the way there, but I’m fairly sure there’s no technobabble to allow them to cloak while towing a ship. And if the ship was able to move under its own power, it would be uncloaked/detectable, and the Defiant would have to decloak to defend it.

> It is save to assume that only a very small part is monitored. I think they also mention that the Dominion didn't get near the wormhole for quite some time.

It’s equally safe to assume that in a “cold war” scenario, the Dominion would be very closely monitoring all traffic around the wormhole - especially if (as you suggested) they have superior sensor technology which lets them monitor from beyond the range of Federation sensors.

Equally, given that individual Jem Hadar soldiers can cloak, it’s pretty safe to assume that the Dominion have the ability to cloak ships and satellites - they just choose not to, though it’s debatable whether this is because Jem Hadar ships are mass produced on the cheap, or if it’s a deliberate statement of strength. Certainly, they’d already developed cloaking countermeasures before the Defiant first poked its nose into the wormhole.

And as we find out just a few episodes later, the Dominion has a POW camp close to the wormhole, and has a large fleet of Jem Hadar ships hiding in a plasma cloud, also very close to the wormhole.

But it’s fine - after all, everyone knows the nearest outpost is three weeks away from the planet in this episode, which itself is just a week away from the wormhole!

What’s that? Is it the sound of dramatic convenience whooshing past? ;)

> "You can perhaps argue that the crew had already volunteered for a high risk mission, given that they were in the Gamma quadrant in an essentially unprotected ship, but then we get back to just how ridiculous this entire scenario is..."
There are many mission in Star Trek that turn out high risk even though at first they seemed fairly low risk.

To be honest, it’s amazing how many things go wrong in Star Trek - from teleporters to warp engines, holosuites and beyond. It’s almost as everything happens for dramatic purposes… ;)

Any which way, sending a lightly armed ship only capable of warp 5 into a region where it may encounter heavily armed ships capable of warp 7 seems a tad… stupid. Putting half the command crew of DS9 onto said ship is doubly stupid!

Almost as if there wasn't any attempt at a risk assessment...

> OMG an hour. I actually have stuff to do.
This has been fun. :)

It is mildly worrying, how easy it is to get sucked into writing about this stuff ;)
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Top Hat
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 7:57am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Interesting! The poll question "Which series have you watched the most?" inherently disadvantages series with shorter runs. It perhaps goes without saying that this is at best "infotainment" rather than anything empirical. At best it would seem to indicate that regular browsers of startrek.com skew towards Voyager fans... or perhaps that people who elect to participate in such polls skew Voyager. It's not a ton to hang one's hat on, but it's at least interesting.
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Abby
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 7:24am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Season 7 of Enterprise, eh, petulant?

That is one Trek I never tried, but even I know it only goes to season 4. Someone is a funny man.
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Abby
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 7:15am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Okay, okay, here's the poll link:

https://ca.startrek.com/article/poll-fans-most-watched-star-trek-series-is

Sure, only a group of 25,000 people asked, but it has to have some weight. Came up as first search result in my "most watched Star Trek poll" Google find.

And the Netflix results:

https://nerdist.com/article/star-trek-netflix-most-rewatched/

But you can get links to those stats just by doing any "most watched Star Trek" and "Netflix" search. That was just one link that loaded the quickest.

Although, I'm not saying that millions are wrong. I know DS9 features all all these Trek sites. But I'm just saying what I liked, what I've tried to watch, and what my favourite is out of them all. Nice to have found links to support that.
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OmicronThetaDeltaPhi
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 7:13am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ship

I see that Booming is bored and frustrated again.

Jeez...
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petulant
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 7:09am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

I read a poll where Enterprise beat every other show on television. It also had the highest rated season 7 on YouTube somewhere. These sources are indisputable facts!
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Top Hat
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 6:32am (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Voyager was the highest rated show on UPN, which is a tad like being the thinnest kid at fat camp. It meant that it kept getting resources and advertising, but a rising tide floats all boats, and UPN was anything but.

I'm curious what poll you mean -- among general viewers? It does seem generally true that Voyager had more visibility. That does not innately translate to people watching it regularly, much less liking it.

If you like Voyager, that's great. But I'm afraid I've never found the "millions of viewers can't be wrong" argument a pretty meaningful one, about anything.
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Booming
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 3:06am (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ship

You know I thought that you would run for the hills and lick your very significant wounds but apparently this will be another page of 50 shades of grey. LET THE SPANKING BEGIN!

"but was instead using the "liberty ships vs u-boats" example to demonstrate the difficulties of having an extended supply chain across long distances across potential/actual hostile territory."
Still the example is at best an apples and oranges scenario considering that England (and the rest) would have just starved to death because the Islands were the center of the British Empire. Here we are talking about one resource and the Dominion doesn't have cloaks so the u-boat comparison is also off. But I get your general point. Convoys in potentially hostile territory are dangerous.

"This'll be the Dominion that has established a spy presence on Terra? The one that's been actively using subterfuge to try and get the Klingons and Federation to attack each other?"
You do realize that the USA does all that towards their allies, the Europeans. It is kind of a joke in Europe. For example the US embassy in Berlin has huge spy stuff on it's roof. It is less than 500m away from the chancellery and the parliament. The US also tries for more than 20 years now to pit the eastern European countries against the western European ones with the aim of dividing an potential global rival. So doing this kind of stuff is certainly not a sign of an war even a cold one but actually nothing unusual even towards allies. Sure the US doesn't want a war between Germany and Poland... I hope. :D

"And the ones, who (just a few episodes later) had prepared an attack on Bajor's sun which would destroy their entire civilisation? The Dominion which force breeds genetically altered shock-troopers addicted to a drug?"
Oh I don't even want to speculate what horrible potential plans China and the USA have in case war.
And about the drug thing. You do realize that you basically cannot be an US air force pilot on an aircraft carrier if you refuse to take drugs. *cough* Dexedrine *cough* So using drugs for military benefit is nothing unusual, in many militaries today it is the norm. Sure the US isn't breeding soldiers or so they say... :)

" The Dominion which had wiped out and destroyed all ships which they found on the other side of the wormhole without asking questions or attempting any form of negotiation? "
To quote the US President: What do you think? Our country is so innocent? :D
Man, this guy has given the world quotes for eternity.

"Though as we find out later, the Federation had a few dirty tricks of it's own tucked into the uniform..."
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87ejOe6MJnQ

"Laying a minefield? Sounds like something you'd do in a time of war!"
You can mine your own territory as much as you want. There are numerous states who use minefields who are not planing to go to war or are at war.

"Gotta quote 'em all, baby!"
NO! You still ignored my contractor argument. Again if I might add...

"For better or worse, Star Trek has always preferred dramatic set-pieces over technical consistency: one week's technobabble is generally (and conveniently) forgotten by the very next episode"
Ok, that is a forbidden argument because if we accept that then reality in this forum breaks down. And if reality this reality breaks down then I would have to accept the fact that I already wasted 40 minutes answering questions about something that has no meaning which would not reflect well on the fact that all our lives will end at some point.

"I'll grant Dax to a degree"
You can grant Day full stop. :D

"Certainly, it would have been sensible to prepare for the potential arrival of the Jem Hadar as best as possible - and to put as much resource as possible into studying the ship"
That is what they did until the other ship arrived.

"First, it's mentioned fairly early on that this isn't a standard Jem Hadar ship, which in turn would imply that it could be more important than usual."
would imply that it could... be many things. What it means is that it is not a standard attack ship.

" This suggests that there may be a Dominion base or other assets nearby, or that it could even be some sort of transit route between points of the Dominion. As such, what are the odds that there are other Dominion ships which are less than three weeks travel away?"
No it doesn't. It could be an exploration vessel, a diplomatic vessel. A million things but vessel weeks away from the next outpost doesn't mean outpost nearby. The next Federation outpost was a week away. How long did Sisko have to wait for a pick up again? They only know that they are 3 weeks away from the nearest Dominion outpost. So hoping that the Dominion will need quite a bit of time is not unreasonable and considering the gains the logical choice.

"the Dominion has superior technology"
The Dominion ships can still not fly faster than warp 9.9. and logic dictates that three weeks away means at maximum speed because if it doesn't than why use a measurement of time not distance. In universe the writers wanted to indicate: "A ship would need three weeks from the nearest Dominion outpost."

"how quickly could they really travel to this planet if this ship is important to them for some reason?"
Again, they only appear so quickly because it is important but it could have just been some random troop transporter.

" If not, then at least you've gotten something useful out of it and there's little risk of the entire team being wiped out."
I thought that the shuttle gets destroyed shortly after they arrive at the ship.

"the Dominion would certainly notice the Defiant heading into the gamma quadrant, and would be more than willing to ambush and destroy it."
Yes but the Defiant is a week away. Dominion three weeks. Plus they only know that the Defiant is heading for the Gamma Quadrant not where they are going. Plus the Defiant has cloak.

"So whichever way you cut it, Sisco and co would have to spend at least a week sailing through territory monitored by the Dominion, in an uncloaked ship."
It is save to assume that only a very small part is monitored. I think they also mention that the Dominion didn't get near the wormhole for quite some time.

"Conflating the choice of an individual with the ethos of an organisation is pretty weak sauce, old chap."
Utilitarianism is often used in Star Trek. The needs of the many and so on.

"Star Fleet doesn't send it's members into high risk situations"
Are you sure?? :D
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbOcmKCE2J8

"You can perhaps argue that the crew had already volunteered for a high risk mission, given that they were in the Gamma quadrant in an essentially unprotected ship, but then we get back to just how ridiculous this entire scenario is..."
There are many mission in Star Trek that turn out high risk even though at first they seemed fairly low risk.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-WN_AxH3Ik
good one. :D

OMG an hour. I actually have stuff to do.
This has been fun. :)
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Luke M
Tue, Jan 21, 2020, 1:36am (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S5: The First Duty

Wil Wheaton does great work in this episode. Yes Patrick Stewart as Picard is at his thunderous best but it evokes real emotion because you feel Crusher wilting under it all and that's all from Wheaton.

Wesley's turmoil in this episode is so well drawn and when he says "I can't call Captain Picard a liar!" the whole weight of the history of the show and those two characters comes into play on that one line. Excellent.
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P'kard
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 11:14pm (UTC -6)
Re: TNG S1: The Neutral Zone

As someone born in the early 1990s I did not find the frozen people relatable at all. They just seemed greedy and self centered
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Abby
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 10:49pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

I was referring to a poll about what Star Trek series people had seen. In that poll, Voyager beat everything but TNG. I shouldn’t have mentioned “on the air” since I have no clue about Nielsen ratings and such.

Wasn’t Voyager released on the new Paramount network? Would that alter rating results? I also saw that the most watched Star Trek episodes on Netflix are Voyager ones.

I am watching both season 7’s of TNG and Voyager right now. Voyager is 100% more entertaining. And I grew up with Next Generation.
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Top Hat
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 9:20pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Just if people are interested: http://www.madmind.de/2009/05/02/all-star-trek-movies-and-episodes-in-two-charts/. You'll note that in absolute terms, DS9 had better ratings than Voyager, aside from a handful of short periods (including right at the beginning). Both declined sharply over time, however, which TNG did not.
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Abby
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 9:02pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Prophecy

Loved the episode, too. Any episode with much intended humour is usually a good watch. I also like that the head Klingon is smart enough to mention that the scrolls could have been written by some crazy guy in a cave. However, he is finding the believable aspects in them to help his people make a home. And perfect that all worked out and B’Elanna saved his family. Obviously all a coincidence, but the gang can go on believing the prophecy.

The Neelix stuff was funny. Any time he can bother Tuvok is the best. And saving poor Kim from the lady - perfect. These episodes are simply comic relief and I welcome them after some of the intense and dramatic episodes. As some poster mentioned above, I am probably in that group of people that Voyager writers were catering to.

I also read that when Star Trek was on the air, more people watched Voyager than all the other series besides TNG. So the writers must have been doing something right.

I don’t need character development in my shows, just fun characters experiencing life.
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Patrick
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 8:06pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Nightingale

Did anyone notice Seven was sleeping in a bed before Harry came in and woke her up? That was weird; it must have been one of those Borg regeneration mattresses.
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Patrick
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 6:55pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S7: Body and Soul

I love this episode because of Jeri Ryan’s portrayal of the Doctor. She was hilarious, enjoying those prison rations!
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Jamie Mann
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 6:41pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: The Ship

> Plus as somebody else mentioned they are not at war and the Dominion stated that they only attack ships that have entered their territory. It's is not at all like merry old England during WW2 for numerous reasons. (I hope I don't have to name them. It seems very obvious to me but I can if you want)

Oh dear. I wasn't comparing the situation to WW2, but was instead using the "liberty ships vs u-boats" example to demonstrate the difficulties of having an extended supply chain across long distances across potential/actual hostile territory.

It seemed very obvious to me, but I can explain further if you want ;)

Beyond that: the Dominion and Federation aren't at war? This'll be the Dominion that has established a spy presence on Terra? The one that's been actively using subterfuge to try and get the Klingons and Federation to attack each other? And the ones, who (just a few episodes later) had prepared an attack on Bajor's sun which would destroy their entire civilisation? The Dominion which force breeds genetically altered shock-troopers addicted to a drug? The Dominion which had wiped out and destroyed all ships which they found on the other side of the wormhole without asking questions or attempting any form of negotiation? Including a Bajor colony!

And let's not forget Bashir's harrowing experience on a planet the Dominion first nuked back to the stone age and then infected with a 100% infectious and 100% fatal disease.

It was pretty clear at this point in the story that the Dominion was not looking for co-existence, was not interested in any form of negotiation and was actively looking to destroy the Federation and Klingon empires. And meanwhile on the Federation side, they'd already significantly upgraded DS9's offensive and defensive capabilities in preparation for a Dominion invasion.

There may not have been much active fighting, but it was definitely a full blown cold war, complete with a lot of black operations, many of which would have resulted in the deaths of billions if successful.

Though as we find out later, the Federation had a few dirty tricks of it's own tucked into the uniform...

> The Federation knew that it couldn't stop the Dominion, especially without the Romulans. "Giving up" the station while also mining the wormhole was a fairly smart choice. Plus they used the ships for destroying a big shipyard.
Laying a minefield? Sounds like something you'd do in a time of war!

(Plus, all that happened several episodes /and/ one Cardassian betrayal later. Again, Sisco couldn't use this kind of future knowledge, even if he was the Emissary ;) )

> To quote Clausewitz:"The defensive form of war is not a simple shield, but a shield made up of well-directed blows."

Ooo, classical quotes time! Here's one from good ol' Sun Tzu:

"On open ground, I would keep a vigilant eye on my defenses. On ground of intersecting highways, I would consolidate my alliances"

I'm pretty sure being a week away from any support would class as open ground, and hence require a very vigilant eye on your defences. Such as, you know, setting up a convoy system for any ships travelling to the planet and back.

And I'm equally sure that the wormhole would count as an "intersecting highway", so Sisco should have been concentrating on his alliances with Bajor, the Cardassians and even the Klingons and Romulans, rather than spending several weeks poking at rocks on a remote planet which the Federation could never hope to support in the event of a full scale war breaking out.

Gotta quote 'em all, baby!

> I mentioned the Dominion has superior sensors so only hiding would have been risky but maybe possible but certainly not monitoring. The better option then would have been to just fly back

For better or worse, Star Trek has always preferred dramatic set-pieces over technical consistency: one week's technobabble is generally (and conveniently) forgotten by the very next episode. For instance, no-one seems to remember the Ferengi metaphasic shield from TNG, despite the fact that this could handle a far heavier energy load than a normal shield.

Certainly, it would have been sensible to prepare for the potential arrival of the Jem Hadar as best as possible - and to put as much resource as possible into studying the ship - rather than sending most of the crew off to dig graves.

> That is not true. Sisko and at least Dax have fought through numerous engagements. Dax probably more than anybody. We also don't know the capabilities of the other officers. I say bad reasoning and speculation, good sir.

I'll grant Dax to a degree. But whichever way you cut it, a small group of lightly armed non-soldiers is never going to fare well against a much larger group of heavily armed, better armoured shock troopers, especially when the latter also happen to be faster, stronger, significantly more motivated and willing to die for their cause. And that's before you throw in things like teleportation and personal cloaking devices.

> Yes Sisko didn't know that there was a founder on the ship BUT he did know that they were three weeks outside of Dominion space and if it was just one of the endless amounts of ships it would probably take quite a while maybe weeks until the Dominion notices and then sends a rescue ship.

You were kinda doing well there.

First, it's mentioned fairly early on that this isn't a standard Jem Hadar ship, which in turn would imply that it could be more important than usual.

Then too, if the nearest *known* Dominion outpost is three weeks away, then why was this ship nearby? This suggests that there may be a Dominion base or other assets nearby, or that it could even be some sort of transit route between points of the Dominion. As such, what are the odds that there are other Dominion ships which are less than three weeks travel away?

Also, just what does "three weeks" mean? Is that three weeks at standard cruising speed? Does the Dominion use the same cruising speed? Given that warp speeds are exponential and the Dominion has superior technology (and less regard for the safety of the crew - i.e. they're prepared to run their systems hotter and have fewer safety/backup systems, so have ships which are both lighter and more power efficient), how quickly could they really travel to this planet if this ship is important to them for some reason?

All things considered, there were four main scenarios:

1) They'd be able to use the runabout and/or the ship's own engines to escape the gravity well and head back to the wormhole. Elapsed time: minimum one week (depending on what speed they can maintain while towing/nursing a damaged ship's engines)
2) They'd have to wait for the Defiant to arrive, and then to tow the ship back to the wormhole. Elapsed time: minimum two weeks (again, depending on what speed they can maintain while towing)
3) A Dominion ship could turn up at any time and simply destroy the ship to protect it's secrets *at any time*
4) A Dominion ship could turn up at any time and drop a platoon of the aforementioned heavily armed shock troopers *at any time*

Scenarios 3) and 4) would mean the death of everyone on the planet. Scenarios 1) and 2) rely on the hope that there are no nearby Jem Hadar ships.

So yeah, the best bet would have been the option I suggested: get as much material onboard the runabout as quickly as possible, and hightail it out of there, while the Defiant trundles over to the planet. If the ship is still intact and there's no Jem Hadar around when it arrives, then it's cocktails all around. If not, then at least you've gotten something useful out of it and there's little risk of the entire team being wiped out.

(And to be honest, I'd question the validity of options 1) and 2), given that even if there weren't any changling spies on DS9, the Dominion would certainly notice the Defiant heading into the gamma quadrant, and would be more than willing to ambush and destroy it. And for all (to quote the Rikers) it's a tough little ship, it didn't exactly fare that well when set upon by hordes of Jem Hadar ships at the start of Season 3, and I doubt it's been upgraded enough to do significantly better.

Then too, it presumably wouldn't be able to cloak if towing the other ship. And even if the other ship could move under it's own power, it wouldn't be able to cloak and would be a sitting duck for any Jem Hadar warships. So the Defiant would have to decloak to defend it in the event of an attack.

So whichever way you cut it, Sisco and co would have to spend at least a week sailing through territory monitored by the Dominion, in an uncloaked ship.

Thankfully for Sisco, the writers handwaved that little issue away...)

> sacrificing the few for the many.But the Federation has never had that kind of mindset
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xa6c3OTr6yA
Conflating the choice of an individual with the ethos of an organisation is pretty weak sauce, old chap.

To be fair, the Federation does occasionally ask individuals to risk their lives. Such as when Picard asked a Bajorian midshipman to act as a prisoner for a Cardassian agent (even if this was arguably highly out of character), or when Troi realised that the only way to "win" her command simulation was to order Geordi to his death. But these are at least nominally extreme situations; in general, Star Fleet doesn't send it's members into high risk situations - and spends lots of time agonising over their deaths when something happens, as demonstrated in this episode.

You can perhaps argue that the crew had already volunteered for a high risk mission, given that they were in the Gamma quadrant in an essentially unprotected ship, but then we get back to just how ridiculous this entire scenario is...

> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rv8fPISqh_k
What can I say? Except...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T-WN_AxH3Ik
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Brad
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 6:24pm (UTC -6)
Re: VOY S3: Basics, Part II

An excellent analysis as always, Elliot! Glad to see you're back.
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Chrome
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 5:45pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Children of Time

"Am I remembering wrong, or did Odo not link with Older Odo before the end of the episode?"

ODO: There's something you should know. The other Odo, the one from the planet, came to Sickbay before he left the ship.
ODO: There's something else the other Odo wanted you to know. He was responsible for changing the Defiant's flight plan.

It sounds like Oldo linked after he did the deed. Prime Odo couldn't keep form because of the planet's technobabble, so he couldn't do anything to fix it, either. So Odo's hands are basically clean (assuming one thinks Oldo did anything wrong to begin with).
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Peter G.
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 5:16pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Children of Time

Am I remembering wrong, or did Odo not link with Older Odo before the end of the episode? If so, the decision would have to have been at least partially joint. But I actually do think there's a such thing as not being mature enough to make a decision, that, if you get it wrong, you'll regret for the rest of your life. There are decisions in life where "you won't know" how it will go, and maybe there are others which, pick wrong, and you'll never be able to take that back. In the case of who will have families with whom it might be hard to say which way is better. Or at least it might have tempting to think about the colony. But in Odo's case he had 200 years to think about it, which I think is really not taken seriously enough. She meant that much to him. I'm not sure I agree that him making the choice for her (and for his other self) is antagonistic towards her wishes. It's not exactly as if her life's goal was to die for some random colonist. But her heartstrings were pulled and she gave in to it, which is one of the things he loves about her, but also a good reason to provide her with a kick when she needs to get back to her chosen mission. Maybe that's a contentious assertion and I don't have that much time now, but I'm pretty sure I'm onto something with that.

@ Fenn,

"I feel the majority of the episode *is* dedicated to having both the characters and audience see these people as living beings with a right to persist."

The thing is, I don't really see any point made in the episode about their rights. I don't in fact think they have any right at all to expect anyone to die so they can live. Rather I think a lot of time is taken to help us connect with them, to give a clear vision of who they are and what *wouldn't happen* if a different course is chosen. It's that vivid connection to what *could be* that makes life's choices so difficult. But we let ourselves off easy by not thinking about the consequences of what we *don't do*. Funny that, since we don't do a great deal more things than we do. It's worth thinking about, at the very least, even if what we have chosen to do really is right for us.
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Chrome
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 4:16pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S5: Children of Time

Yeah, Fenn, I think by letting Oldo be the one making the decision and not prime timeline Odo, the writers let Odo off the hook. I can see Kira still having some apprehension that current Odo might become someone who wouldn't listen to her wishes, but by the same token current Odo hasn't done anything like that. And for what it's worth, it seems likely given the change in circumstances prime Odo will turn out completely different.
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Booming
Mon, Jan 20, 2020, 3:23pm (UTC -6)
Re: DS9 S7: Seventh Season Recap

Well, it is certainly closer to an (ideal) communist society than a capitalistic one. The state provides every basic need(food, health care, living space, free education) and also controls the means of production, no money, most people work for the state.
Sounds pretty communistic to me.
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