Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
"The Magnificent Ferengi"
Air date: 12/29/1997
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Chip Chalmers
Review by Jamahl Epsicokhan
"Family. You understand."
"Not really. I was cloned."
— Quark and Yelgrun
Note: This episode was rerated from 3 to 2.5 stars when the season recap was written.
Nutshell: Silly, slight, and extremely low on plausibility, but a fresh and enjoyable comic piece nonetheless.
Every once in a while you've got to just turn off your brain and go with the flow. That seems to be the best advice I can give a viewer of "The Magnificent Ferengi," an amusing comic episode that's beyond any realm of conventional plausibility and exists in a universe of its own.
"The Magnificent Ferengi" is an amiable hour of television; the best "Ferengi outing" in years. Sure, it has some problems and doesn't always seem to know exactly what it's trying to say, but it's light, has some respectable zip, and proves genuinely amusing—a breakthrough considering past Ferengi outings like "Ferengi Love Songs," "Bar Association," ""Family Business," "Prophet Motive," et al.
The plot is scarcely believable. It involves the kidnapping of Quark and Rom's mother Ishka (Cecily Adams)—better known as "Moogie"—at the hands of the Dominion. The Grand Nagus then asks Quark to get her back (offering the reward of 50 bars of gold-pressed latinum), leading Quark to recruit an all-Ferengi "task force" to get the job done. The first question, of course, is just WHY the Dominion, unprovoked, would kidnap a Ferengi civilian in the first place. Sidestepping the rules of war by resorting to such a blatantly terrorist yet apparently fruitless tactic strikes me as rather silly—and inexplicable. What does the Dominion hope to gain by kidnapping Ishka? And even if they do stand to gain, why would they arrange meeting Quark and his band of Ferengi recruits for a prisoner exchange? Don't ask, because the story has no answers.
No matter. This is a comedy, and in comedies we're often asked to forego logic. That's fine with me if the show is entertaining in the long haul. "The Magnificent Ferengi" is a likable episode with admirable comic timing on the part of director Chip Chalmers. Although, I must admit that I'm not a comprehensive encyclopedia of westerns, so any reference within this show in homage to John Sturges' The Magnificent Seven (other than the title, I suppose) went right by me. Nevertheless, the intentions here seem to be good, and in and by themselves many of the gags are funny.
Who's to say what's funny, anyway? Is it enough that this show made me laugh? I think so, especially considering that the jokes in "Magnificent" worked for every reason that jokes in most Ferengi episodes don't. The cliché of the greedy, scheming Ferengi has been worn incredibly tired over the years, and for once we have a departure from the "Ferengi profit ideology" in favor of a more action-oriented plot. Sure, the lust for latinum still plays a part in the story, but this time it feels like incidental, true-to-character motivation rather than the driving concern of lackluster comedy. In small doses, the Ferengi greed and scheming makes sense and works; these guys are, after all, Ferengi.
Yet there's also another agenda working here—the sense that, yes, even Ferengi strive to be something more than they are. They want to be heroes, too. An early scene in the bar sets the stage nicely. Quark explains to his patrons how he discovered some beverage exporters who were cheating the market at the expense of customers. Quark's discovery, as a result, led to a moral victory and a free supply of a beverage called "syrup of squill." But when Dax, Bashir, and O'Brien walk into the bar after having completed a dangerous mission behind enemy lines, everyone's attention is instantly shifted away from Quark. People are more interested in heroes whose victories count for something important (namely the war effort) than they are in a fresh supply of some new beverage.
So what the meat of this story (slight as it may be) is really about is Quark wanting to be a hero—to prove that Ferengi can be as heroic as anyone else. So he recruits his task force from a number of familiar faces. His brother Rom and nephew Nog are the first to come aboard the mission; the former for a cut of 50 bars of latinum, the latter because he gets to call the shots as strategic operations officer (I was just waiting for Nog to say, "Something else I can put on my Starfleet resume!")—and also a cut of 20 bars of latinum. Why 20? Because by the time Nog is recruited into the mission, Quark and Rom have decided to lie to everyone else about the amount of the reward. (Like I said, Ferengi greed does figure into the story).
Quark recruits the rest of his team one by one in some mildly entertaining scenes, including Leck (Hamilton Camp), a knife-wielding assassin with "unique priorities"; the now-ruined cousin Gaila (Josh Pais), whom Quark bails out of jail in exchange for his help (he had been imprisoned for vagrancy); and of course "Brunt, FCA," or rather now just plain and simple Brunt (the Nagus fired him following his treachery in "Ferengi Love Songs"), who cons Quark into letting him in on the profit opportunity since he's the only one with a ship.
With the help of Major Kira's recommendation, the Federation grants Quark's team custody of prisoner Keevan (Christopher Shea), the arrogant Vorta captured earlier this season in "Rocks and Shoals." The plan is to trade Keevan for Ishka—but also to be ready for anything the Dominion might do to go back on the agreed trade.
First, a couple gripes: While I liked the fact that the writers remembered Keevan from back at the beginning of the season, I'm unsure about the way he comes into the plot here. I find it unlikely the Federation would be so willing to grant a non-Federation person custody of a Dominion prisoner of war for use in such a "dangerous" plot (even considering the plot itself bears little logical scrutiny on story terms). If this weren't war times, I could see it happening, but given the delicate situation I have some serious doubts.
But as I said before, it's probably not prudent to concern oneself with plot in an episode of physical humor where Ferengi run like madmen through corridors (watching Armin Shimerman sprint past the camera was one of the comic highlights of the show), rig a cadaver for strategic purposes (more on this later), and bargain with the most annoyed Vorta in the quadrant.
What this episode is about is comic set pieces. These Ferengi constitute the most inept action team I've ever seen, and the results are often quite funny. Take, for example, the scene where they engage in combat simulations in the holosuite. Rom runs into a wall. Brunt surrenders (all too easily). Gaila is shot. Leck shoots Moogie. And Nog is just a big pain as drill sergeant. Oddly, much like first season's "The Nagus," more Ferengi on-screen at once turns out to be more fun. I'm not sure why; it must have something to do with snappy, rapid-fire dialog and the manic energy of all the actors combined.
Some of the humor, like the sly scene where Quark and Rom roam the shafts of the station to suddenly and accidentally find themselves in Sisko's office, work because they're clever and understated. But more often than not, it's the go-for-broke banter and slapstick that is put to the test in "The Magnificent Ferengi." The plot takes the Ferengi to the abandoned station Empok Nor where they're to meet and negotiate with a Vorta official named Yelgrun (Iggy Pop)—a man with lots of Jem'Hadar at his disposal and not a whole lot of patience.
There's plenty of dialog between Quark and Yelgrun, much of it ending with Yelgrun making a reluctant concession and/or sarcastic remark. Some of this works, though some of it doesn't. While Iggy Pop delivers deadpan reasonably well (Quark: "Family. You understand." Yelgrun: "Not really. I was cloned."), he just can't keep up with the whimsically engaging performances of Shimerman and the other Ferengi players. A Vorta character portrayed more along the lines of Jeffrey Combs' Weyoun would've worked better in this role. At the same time, few of Yelgrun's concessions strike me as plausible for a member of the Dominion. He puts himself at so many disadvantages for the sake of driving the plot turns that it becomes very obvious that there's little in this episode that we should take seriously, let alone can.
Meanwhile, prisoner Keevan plays the part of the annoyingly keen observer—adding his two cents to the Ferengi problems whenever he feels the need. Much of his dialog is delivered straight, used to explain the plot rather than fuel the humor; but he is the central figure in many of the show's biggest laughs. He's the victim—in the biggest and funniest display of Ferengi ineptness in recent memory—of being caught in the crossfire of one Ferengi (Gaila) infuriated at learning he has been cheated by another Ferengi (Quark). Only Ferengi negotiators could inadvertently kill the prisoner they brought along to use as their bargaining tool.
In a move that borders on gallows humor (but which proves uproariously funny), Nog rigs Keevan's corpse with neural stimulators in order to create the illusion Keevan is still alive long enough for the rest of the Ferengi to gain the upper hand on Yelgrun and his two soldiers. The use of Keevan in an idea spawned by Weekend at Bernie's is about as low as the writer's probably could've gone. But I've got to hand it to them—it manages to work as portrayed. Seeing the dead Keevan standing like a statue with eyes wide open and head lodged at an unnatural angle was still a hilarious sight. (Yelgrun: "What have they done to him?" Indeed.)
But to end on a critical note, I think the biggest underlying problem of statement in "The Magnificent Ferengi" is the Catch-22 of the Ferengi ineptitude. Sure, everything works out for them in the end and the net result of the episode is a lot of laughs. But at the same time, the episode can't get past the reputation the series has built for the Ferengi—that they're still too light and silly to be taken remotely seriously no matter the situation. I liked the amusing characterizations and the initial sentiments of people trying to strive higher, but when all's said and done, are they really "heroes"? I still can't help but get the feeling that a better title for this episode might've been "The Cheerfully Inept Ferengi."
Next week: Sisko, Dukat, and The Truth. I'm already intrigued...
Previous episode: Statistical Probabilities
Next episode: Waltz
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94 comments on this post
Sun, Apr 27, 2008, 3:39pm (UTC -5)
Tue, Jun 17, 2008, 8:34pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Sep 12, 2008, 5:01am (UTC -5)
Sat, Jan 3, 2009, 1:11pm (UTC -5)
Everything about it betrays the foundations of the Star Trek universe.
I was appauled by it, and this is where Star Trek well and truely jumped the shark.
Mon, Mar 23, 2009, 11:33pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Apr 24, 2009, 2:48pm (UTC -5)
Sun, Jul 12, 2009, 8:39pm (UTC -5)
Thu, Oct 22, 2009, 5:12am (UTC -5)
Mon, Mar 1, 2010, 9:32pm (UTC -5)
Sun, Mar 7, 2010, 11:02am (UTC -5)
Mon, Jun 14, 2010, 10:23pm (UTC -5)
Sun, Jan 9, 2011, 11:59pm (UTC -5)
Wed, Jan 19, 2011, 9:33pm (UTC -5)
Sure, the whole setup is contrived, but considering the payoff was so good, I forgive them.
Tue, Feb 1, 2011, 1:01am (UTC -5)
Did you never watch TNG? I always *hated* Ferengi because in TNG they were always portrayed in this 'keystone cops' bumbling-idiot way, and I just found it irritating. I find most Trek attempts at comedy episodes pretty annoying, but the constant Feregeni-as-idiot joke really got on my nerves.
Voyager was almost as bad, but finally in DS9 we found the role of Quark which kept the Ferengi's ultra-capitalist habits but built a much more rounded and realistic character around them.
Rom was plagued at times by the same old bumbling idiot, but by this point in the series he had acquired some very serious attributes. And the journey of Nog from idiot Ferengi child to starfleet cadet was a real growth in the nature of the Ferengi portrayal.
So to me this episode is actually a crappy return to old habits by the writers, I didn't find it funny and I really thinki Quark, Rom, and Nog deserve better than this from the writing team.
I'm not a humorless jerk, either. I love comedy when it's done right - in my collection of TV shows, the cartoon and comedy section is much larger than my drama and sci-fi collection. But comedy in Star Trek has never worked for me. The 'Q' episodes are annoying as hell. The 'alternate universe' and other 'evil twins' episodes that are done as comedy are never funny either. And the ferengi keystone-cops stories are just rubbish.
I *do* like the small bits of humor that occur from time to time in all trek series. These are fine, and all good drama has a joke or two. But the attempts at comedy episodes always fall flat on their face. Trek just isn't a comedy show.
Tue, Feb 1, 2011, 1:44am (UTC -5)
But this episode is genuinely funny. It is very contrived and not at all believable, but if you can forgive that, it is very enjoyable. It is an exception.
Tue, Feb 1, 2011, 8:25am (UTC -5)
But it was much less 'bumbling Ferengi morons' and more like real people having a comedy of errors.
It emphasises, I guess, that DS9's writers had done a really good job of making the Ferengi less cartoon-stupid than in previous series.
Wed, Mar 2, 2011, 2:14pm (UTC -5)
But coming from me, this episode would get 3 1/2 stars. Not a full 4 stars simply because it does take some "easy way out's" when it comes to the plot. But overall, this is my favorite Ferengi episode in all of DS9.
Sun, Sep 9, 2012, 11:45pm (UTC -5)
When it comes to Jammer's reviews, I take his opinion of ferengi eps with a grain of salt. Giving this one a 2.5 his ridiculous.
Thu, Oct 18, 2012, 7:22pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Aug 2, 2013, 12:52am (UTC -5)
Sun, Aug 4, 2013, 12:44am (UTC -5)
Tue, Aug 27, 2013, 7:13am (UTC -5)
This episode is certainly one of the most entertaining comedy episodes of DS9 - although it IS over the top. But hey, who cares, we get a laugh a minute, and I certainly was smiling :)
It's funny - there's a cluster here of comedy episodes that are all wel above average as far as story, laughs and thrills are concerned. I'm talking about "You Are Cordially Invited", "The Magnificent Ferengi" and "Who Mourns for Morn?" - these three episodes aren't far apart, and they are probalby the three funniest episodes in DS9 ... in my eyes, that us.
It seems the creators get a better and better handle on the "fun joyride" episodes as the series progresses - particularly the ones centered around the Ferengi.
Sat, Oct 5, 2013, 3:10pm (UTC -5)
This was flat out funny, and it sounds like you basically agree. Scoring an episode 62.5% for that "crime" seems like poor reviewing.
Mon, Oct 28, 2013, 6:54pm (UTC -5)
Tue, Dec 10, 2013, 8:36am (UTC -5)
Fri, Dec 20, 2013, 9:20am (UTC -5)
Sun, Jan 26, 2014, 11:50pm (UTC -5)
What bothers me is that in one scene Rom and Quark are wandering through tunnels for some reason, basically all for a cheap gag where they accidentally end up in Sisko's office. That always felt out of place.
Fri, Mar 14, 2014, 1:19pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Mar 21, 2014, 10:49pm (UTC -5)
A real episode for the fans, and a sign that the writers were not afraid to take risks with the genre and really go for some comedy and break out of some of the "orthodoxies" about sci fi.
Wed, May 7, 2014, 5:24pm (UTC -5)
Thu, May 22, 2014, 9:36pm (UTC -5)
Thu, Jun 26, 2014, 12:23am (UTC -5)
But the one thing that really bugged me about this episode, despite the fun comedy, was the broken trust. Quark very honestly meant to trade a Vorta for his mother, and arranged for a trade that apparently the Vorta meant to keep. The deception that Quark ended up using saved his mother, but it also destroyed the trust between the Dominion and Ferenginar, possibly with huge consequences.
Mon, Aug 18, 2014, 1:08pm (UTC -5)
But I normally skip it as I do with most "Moogie/Zek" episodes.
Iggy Pop? .... lol
2.5 stars for comedic value only.
Sat, Sep 27, 2014, 10:54am (UTC -5)
Tue, Nov 4, 2014, 5:01pm (UTC -5)
Thu, Jan 22, 2015, 10:13am (UTC -5)
"How are they getting the Vorta out of jail by paying his freedom, I thought the Federation didn't use money?"
This is a REALLY good point. Why on Earth would they ever allow Keevan out of jail #1 and is he really just there until somebody shows up and posts bail? Sisko alone should've been so pissed off at what Keevan did during "Rocks And Shoals" that he should have made it a personal point to keep him locked away (at the very least).
Thu, Jan 22, 2015, 10:27am (UTC -5)
I meant bailed Gaila out of jail, not Keevan.
Kind of makes my whole 2nd part of the post moot, but still it's weird to see the Federation taking bail money.
Tue, Sep 8, 2015, 10:54am (UTC -5)
Tue, Sep 8, 2015, 10:54am (UTC -5)
Tue, Sep 8, 2015, 10:55am (UTC -5)
Tue, Sep 8, 2015, 1:30pm (UTC -5)
I loved the dryness of the Vorta, by the way--a nice counterpoint to the enthusiastic Ferengi!
Tue, Sep 8, 2015, 1:36pm (UTC -5)
Sun, Oct 18, 2015, 7:54pm (UTC -5)
Personally (coming from someone who generally hates Ferengi episodes), I love this episode. I think it's one of the top 5 funniest Star Trek episodes, and the "reanimation" scene is classic. Also helps if you've seen the Magnificent Seven.
Fri, Jan 29, 2016, 6:05pm (UTC -5)
Mon, Feb 1, 2016, 3:26pm (UTC -5)
And it's got Iggy frickin' Pop in it. "I hate Ferengi" indeed. 3.5 stars.
Sun, May 15, 2016, 7:51pm (UTC -5)
Sat, May 28, 2016, 2:37am (UTC -5)
You know what makes "The Magnificent Ferengi" so good (and I do think this richly deserves to be placed in the top tier of Trek comedies)? It's the fact that for once it's stupid but the writers fully embrace the stupidity, instead of it being stupid and the writers being oblivious to that fact. Behr and Beimler decided to stop their small, limited, anti-capitalist thinking for once and then did two things. 1.) They actually attached a positive element (bravery) to the Ferengi shenanigans. 2.) They went balls to the wall with a "fuck it, let's have some fun!" attitude.
And fun is what this episode is! It's fun in spades! The jokes actually work. All the Ferengi characters are legitimately enjoyable and likeable - even Ishka!!!!!, something I certainly thought I would never say! Iggy Pop plays a wonderful straight-man against all the antics of the Ferengi. Christopher Shea plays a thoroughly enjoyable wry observer. Everything in the episode simply clicks, at least for me. Even the "Weekend at Bernie's" gag of the dead Keevan being made to walk was uproariously funny!
What else really is there to say about "The Magnificent Ferengi"? There is virtually no meat to sink your teeth into. I suppose one could argue that it shows that the Ferengi are determined survivors underneath their greedy, materialistic exteriors. But, Jammer is absolutely right this is the quintessential example of a "shut up, turn off your brain and enjoy the ride" episode. And enjoy it I did! Immensely!! If only all Ferengi comedies, or even non-Ferengi Trek comedies, could be this good.
Sun, Oct 2, 2016, 1:38am (UTC -5)
It really is my favorite Ferengi episode.
And were they really inept? I don't think so..
Quark called in a favor to get Keevan
They negotiated away all the Jem hadar from the station
They stood their ground with the Vorta during negotiations
They improvised tech to get Keevan to walk
They used their strengths in the final series of events, including Lek's skill with a knife
They got Moogie, and a Vorta to take back to DS9
That to me is a heck of a lot of success in spite of all their comedic weaknesses.
I did always wonder why Zek would have asked Quark to begin with. Shouldn't he have used his money to pay a ship of mercenaries to go after her?
Sun, Feb 5, 2017, 11:46pm (UTC -5)
Not so funny when it's phrased like that? Probably why I didn't laugh at the actual episode. You can swap out the nouns, but the premise doesn't get any funnier.
Tue, Feb 7, 2017, 6:38pm (UTC -5)
Comedy that sacrifices characterizations developed over years is just not funny.
Quark 1. would not be interested in being a hero as opposed to a merchant. 2. Is already a bonafide hero.
Since when are the Vulcans into plastic surgery? On Ferengi females? Who they have never encountered because the females are not allowed off the homeworld?
Why aren't their good plastic surgeons on Ferenginar?
Quark and Rom and probably Nog actually care about Moogie. Yet that is not part of this episode at all. They never say they want to rescue her because of who she is.
Is the Dominion acting like pirates and randomly capturing transport vessels? We never hear about that.
Who else was captured on that ship? Why doesn't the federation care about them?
Why are Quark and Rom crawling through the pipes?
The first thing Quark would have done would have been to go to Sisko. The federation -- not just Kira -- owes Quark a huge debt. Sisko would have helped him anyway.
Sisko would not have left the job to a bunch of bumbling Ferengi.
He would not have let Nog go, certainly not in his Star Fleet uniform.
But, most offensive was the ending. I was actually kind of liking the episode when Quark realized his strength is negotiating. I negotiate a great deal as part of my job and have nothing but respect for the skills required.
When Quark reneged and not only killed the Jem Hadar (somewhat understandable under the circumstances) but also took the Vorta prisoner, he violated the number one rule of negotiating: If you don't have integrity in your negotiations you will never be trusted again. There will be other times that the federation will want to negotiate the release of a particular prisoner. Now any such negotiations will be nearly impossible.
The best thing the show has ever said about the Ferengi is that their biggest battle involved 10 people. That's amazing. Is their any other Star Trek species that made it to an advance civilization without any war?
Mon, Feb 27, 2017, 4:47am (UTC -5)
Fri, Apr 7, 2017, 8:45am (UTC -5)
Too bad they never brought back the Christopher Shea character to portray Keevan again. To me he was the quintessential Vorta, in the way Martok was the ideal Klingon, and Vreenak the classic Romulan. I liked Weyoun but wasn't too crazy about him. Keevan on the other hand had a certain je ne sais quoi that Weyoun lacked, imo.
Thu, May 18, 2017, 2:32am (UTC -5)
Funny episode overall, even if the premise (the Dominion kidnapping Moogie, the federation giving up POW on a Bajoran's request, and the Dominion wanting to exchange her for a disposable clone) is ridiculous.
Nog is awesome. Worf can learn a lot from him when it comes to abandoning a backward culture.
Sat, Jun 3, 2017, 9:22am (UTC -5)
*TNG has the "drunk Irish buddies" (facepalm) that coined a new slang for having sex (washing feet)... And, I know, almost all the 1st season (Angel-One... lol...). TNG has the endless and gigantic wisdom of Picard blurred when he asks "could you help a Cardassian" to any Bajoran he meet. Seriously, Jean-Luc, you're my idol, but your requests are as "appropriate" as asking a 1940s Jew to help Germans. Where are "the... four... lights"?
*"Learning curve" (VOY), is the worst crap ever seen in ST universe, the lowest point ever touched, and in a single episode. Congrats! A single episode that I had to erease from my mind to avoid the destruction of the Federation. It is my "Omega Directive", and even Doc's lullaby to bioneural gel can't save it. Do you remember the development of dramatic episodes in TNG/DS9? Or the TNG "He-she is behaving abnormally, it's Nebula 4747's dust!" episodes? Forget it! What we have here? Captain's intent completely misunderstood... A bit of (childish) HAZING with a taste of "hyper-wesleyzed" Harry Kim (look how am so perfect!), and the ascertainment that B'elanna is not half-Kingon, but a bi-polar dumb. Tuvok's ability to understand of Captain's orders and (maternal?) hopes to integrate the crews, mean a cosplay of "Gunnery Sgt. Hartman" (that includes a Bolian "Private Pyle"). And the final shooting scene was (unfortunately) avoided by the wisdom (yes!) of Neelix (!!!). And Chakotay... OMG Chakotay! The proud Native Am, partisan for his planet, rebel Maquis captain for so noble reasons, the Delta Quadrant's Harlock... is now, to be gentle, a sort of "Alberto Sordi's Kansas City Cop" (search "An American in Rome" on Google). Or, to be honest, a redneck bully good for a bar fight outside an Interstate Hwy. And condemned, from that episode, to be the boring "teacher's pet" ("you've got dust on your suit"... seriously?). We have a PTSD drama episode, including RAPE and MASS MURDER backstories, developed with a "LOL, WHO CARES"... and NOTHING more. Very very educational and trekkie! I dunno if Livingston was under "krokodil" developing a "gold mine episode" as this (does sb remember "Duet", DS9 season 1?), and transforming it into a load of crap, but, this absolute lack of respect to basic Trek philosphy is disarmingly. I don't care if TOS' Klingons had no ridges, if first Borgs wore leggins. Low budget but good ideas is a Trek teaching, and our own imagination compensating lacks in anoter Trek teaching. I don't care if in the "episode 74x47" Geordi had reversed pins; and I really don't wish to bother Stewart with 1,000 trekkies questions, cuz he has a real life too. But I can't see the basis of Trek philosophy chewed and smashed in only 42 mins. It's a shame for their creators, because ST, more than a sci-fi product, is a hope, an "agit-prop for empathy". And, mainly in hopeless periods as this one (does WW3 started?), you can understand what I mean. If i wanna see "Full Metal Jacket" (a film that I know scene-by-scene), I see FMJ. Yes, this episode depicts 20th century's RL but... aehm... that's 23rd! And, ss Lily Sloan said, "Where was your "evolved sensibility" then?" ... I hope that people who conceived this episode can reat this post and can feel all my blame for what they've done. Feq'lhr and the Gre'thor are waitin' for you.
Well, YOUR HONOR and JURY... Compared to the others, DS9 was very very very lucky to have "Weekend at Keevan's" as nonsense episode. Instead of stereotyped Irish men and a Vulcan that can conceive only hazing as human feeling, we have heroic Ferengis! Instead of themes as "WAR RAPE" treated as a "FILLER RUMOR in the SCRIPT" we have PURE COMEDY!
*Is Vulcan a well known place for ear plastic surgeon? No, of course, it is an obvious in-joke about "that tv servies with dat pointy-heared guy"
*Is "Moogie" relevant for Dominion's war? NO way. She 'll be really relevant for Ferenginar, as a feminist leader. Does it disturbs the Founder FEMALE leader? Of course, not
*Compared to WWII, what's the Ferenginar's role during the Dominion Wars? Switzerland
*Nog, wearing Starfleet uniform, in a rescue mission not under the Starfleet? uhmmm...
*A Vorta prisoner, during the Dominion War, delivered to a Ferengi commando with the consenus of the Starfleet C.C.?
*Is Iggy Pop a Vorta? This maybe... lol...
Too many YATIs for a single episode, ain't it? But, the Rules of Acquisition 4747 says: "A charming story about the re-acquisition of a beverage means further gain. If it is interrupted by heroic war stories, invent an even more heroic story"... Your Honor, Quark simply LIED, shamelessly lied. All the episode "The Magnificent Ferengi" is a genial lie, a story all in the head of Quark, that we believed real UNTIL TODAY! Have u ever heard about Yelgrun? No. Quark sold us a fantastic story, with a princess to save, plot twists (a psycho Ferengi not interested into latinum?!?!), some badassic villains vs some inglorious basterds, an enhanced Bernie Lomax in a place (Empok Nor) much more exotic than the Hamptons' beaches, starships, laser shots, treason, heroism, happy end, ear surgery and... finally... An ALIEN-ONLY EPISODE in a series (Star Trek) that is supposedly based on ALINES and, instead, shows a Galaxy suspiciously full of Earthlings... Everywhere.
Quark offered us 40 mins of pure comedy for only 50 latinum bars stolen to his buddies. Your Honor, I ask Quark to be paroled, because there is no crime evidence against the "Holy Canon". This episode was, neither more or less, than a Holodeck story gently donated by him. The guilty one are us, that believed it real! But this lie, that increased squill's profits and respects the Rules of Acquisition, respects the Canon. You would a greedy Ferengi mocking us with a fascinating comedic novel to increase his earnings? Here it is! And, considering that the episode was first aired in early 1998, and we discovered the magnificent lie only today, 20 years after (20!!!); does this not remarks the "evil" and wise business genius of Quark, perfectly in line with the "Holy Canon"? Your Honor, this is a duty to Justice: absolve him, absolve the "Magnificent Ferengi" from any charge or we'll have a trekkie future with drunk brawling captains stabbing ensigns in the Ten Forward, with Guinan as bookmaker. Let Justice triunph and... Enjoy a Syrup of Squill!!!
And please, for Roddenberry's sake, LET SOMEBODY GO ON EMPOK NOR AND SWITCH-OFF KEEVAN!!! :-D
PS: my harangue is ended... And i'm still waitin' for my 20 latinum bars from Quark... Great Trekkie Canon, dat's the spirit! :-D
Sat, Jun 3, 2017, 11:03am (UTC -5)
Sat, Jun 3, 2017, 4:50pm (UTC -5)
Tue, Jun 13, 2017, 4:43pm (UTC -5)
Sat, Jul 15, 2017, 3:19pm (UTC -5)
Wed, Jul 19, 2017, 9:21pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Jul 28, 2017, 4:04pm (UTC -5)
Thu, Oct 26, 2017, 4:26pm (UTC -5)
All the Ferengi characters are brought in with their comical personalities, all wanting to make profit -- that in itself is a good premise for humor. Unfortunately, we have to deal with more idiocy from Rom. And how did DS9 get Iggy Pop to play a Vorta? That was great. And he played the part really well.
Quark's negotiating was well written but the whole thing is highly contrived. Why would the Dominion kidnap his mom? Do they know she's the brains behind the Grand Nagus or something? Anyhow, I shouldn't spend my time questioning everything here -- like why Quark was even able to negotiate let alone not getting blown to bits and how he was able to secure the Vorta Keevan for a prisoner exchange -- bad policy from Sisko/Kira there.
In any case, the part where Keevan gets shot by one of the Ferengi and nearly screws up the whole exchange was hilarious and then the ending with Nog planting stimulators (Weekend at Bernie's-style) on him was funny too. So now they have Iggy Pop as their Vorta prisoner -- that's good because I hope to see him again on a future episode.
2 stars for "The Magnificent Ferengi" -- one of the best Ferengi episodes, which isn't saying much. It was an enjoyable hour but totally implausible and unrealistic. Nothing really to be remembered but not a bad filler episode.
Tue, Feb 6, 2018, 9:56pm (UTC -5)
The writers try to explain once contrivance with another, and end up with torture, death, and mutilation in a comedy episode.
Sat, Mar 10, 2018, 1:50pm (UTC -5)
But if some of the fans above are so angrily bitter about this episode being a comedy, their anger just makes me love it more.
Mon, Mar 12, 2018, 8:02pm (UTC -5)
Mon, Mar 12, 2018, 8:03pm (UTC -5)
Sun, Apr 8, 2018, 3:32pm (UTC -5)
Wed, May 9, 2018, 2:30pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Jun 22, 2018, 8:55pm (UTC -5)
Mon, Aug 13, 2018, 6:07pm (UTC -5)
Eh...I like Quark, but a little Ferengi goes a long way.
Racist stereotypes annoy me; I do give credit to ds9 for having the guts to annoy, offend and challenge.
Mon, Aug 27, 2018, 7:35pm (UTC -5)
Wed, Dec 12, 2018, 9:24am (UTC -5)
Quark was bored by federal heroes' tales and invented a great "Spaceball". Maybe nobody at Quark's believed him telling the story, but it was very entertaining.
Well, we too were at Quark's listening to his story, not believing to him but enjoying the tale. :-DDD
Tue, Jan 15, 2019, 4:12pm (UTC -5)
Tue, Jan 22, 2019, 1:51pm (UTC -5)
Wed, Jan 30, 2019, 10:55pm (UTC -5)
--Quark finally has syrup of squill!! Hooray!!
--Moogie taken prisoner by the Dominion?? For what possible reason? Did they need someone to fix tube grubs just right? Here's hoping their ransom demand is 3 cases of squill syrup. Problem Solved.
--Shimerman is just great.
--An All-Ferenghi rescue team. Moogie is as good as dead.
--Keevan from when they were castaways. Clever use of a past ep.
--That's lots of Jem Hadar. The Jem Hadar is scary, even if the Dominion is not.
--Oh, bummer. They killed Keevan? Well, I didn't see that coming.
--Very weekend at Bernie's, if you like that kinda thing.
--Silly but held my interest. Well conceived. Some LOL moments. Average ep overall.
Sat, Jun 8, 2019, 8:23am (UTC -5)
Sun, Jul 28, 2019, 3:39pm (UTC -5)
Episode skip parameters: Exceeded.
Review and synopsis: Read.
Netflix "next video" button actuated.
OK FINE I'll watch it
Thu, Aug 22, 2019, 8:43pm (UTC -5)
Fri, Nov 29, 2019, 1:44pm (UTC -5)
One of my all time favorite episodes of any star trek series. The comedy parody twist on the magnificent seven movie is spot on.
One unrelated point. The federation gave quark a prisoner to hand over to the dominion whom they knew would be executed once he was in their hands. The federation is against the death penalty yet condemned this prisoner to the fate the same as if they had performed the execution themselves. Made worse by torture first, then execution by the dominion. Countries here on earth in the 21st century often refuse to extradite prisoners to the united states where they may face the death penalty.
This may seem like a minor point in an outstanding star trek episode but star trek does an awful lot of moralizing at its audience on any number of subjects (they verily beat us to death over the head about feminism) not to be called out on their hypocrisy.
Wed, Feb 19, 2020, 5:11pm (UTC -5)
Could be worse. At least it wasn't a Ferengi meets Mirror Universe episode...
(Be careful what you wish for - Mostly Spoiler-free Ed)
Sat, May 30, 2020, 1:03pm (UTC -5)
Because it was a comedy, personally I give all the plot contrivances a pass. I don’t know if Iggy Pop was doing a John Wayne impression because it was a western spoof, but I loved his performance as the Vorta. Reducing a villain to a temporary dummy for the sake of comedy is very anime like and I for one enjoyed the hour.
Sun, Jul 26, 2020, 8:47pm (UTC -5)
And shouldn’t they have had 7 Ferengi to make the whole magnificent seven thing work? They were one short. Budget crunch?
Sun, Sep 13, 2020, 11:50pm (UTC -5)
Wed, Mar 10, 2021, 11:18am (UTC -5)
Wed, Apr 7, 2021, 5:39am (UTC -5)
Sun, May 9, 2021, 9:43pm (UTC -5)
Tue, May 25, 2021, 7:10am (UTC -5)
Fri, Aug 20, 2021, 12:22am (UTC -5)
I'm still smiling. This one never grows old.
Sat, Nov 13, 2021, 2:24am (UTC -5)
Mon, Mar 21, 2022, 4:14pm (UTC -5)
1) the idea of a Ferengi assassin ("eliminator") being in the phonebook like a rat exterminator
2) said assassin shooting Ishka in the simulation demonstrating a callous ultra pragmatic mindset that sets him apart from other Ferengi
3) continuity of bringing back Keevan (and his fate being fitting for betraying his men in Rocks & Shoals)
4) The expression of WTF-horror on Ishka's face when she's watching Keevan lurch towards her, and her little sideways dodge when he's about to stumble right into her
5) Yelgrun: "What have they DONE to him?"
Tue, Mar 22, 2022, 8:07pm (UTC -5)
Mon, May 9, 2022, 8:22pm (UTC -5)
Thu, May 12, 2022, 4:42pm (UTC -5)
By far my favorite scene is when Nog suggests they better make sure Moogie is not a changeling and he cuts her hand. I love Moogie's response: "Let's see if you are a changeling!" And then she proceeds to bash Nog's head a few times. Rom then helpfully pointed out that's not how you test for changelings then Moogie asks for the knife, though of course the Jem'haddar don't let her do that. Great stuff.
As to how Moogie got captured in the first place, there was a line of dialogue that indicated the ship she was on happened to get captured by the Dominion. It seems clear her capture was incidental, the Dominion didn't realize she was anybody important.
Mon, Sep 19, 2022, 3:03pm (UTC -5)
It's not just that I like the Ferengi (I was especially happy to see "Brunt, F.C.A." again) and the humor was very good at times.
On a more serious note, I'm a big votary of self-belief and self-help. I love it when people(!?) find an inner strength and determination to accomplish--or at least give a good old college try at accomplishing--something they were convinced is way above their reach. Rising to the occasion and conquering your internal demons and self-doubt is one hell of a thing. Persevering in face of tough obstacles is much more difficult than just quitting, so I applaud the Ferengi for staying the course.
Mock the buffoonish, bumbling, fumbling, stumbling Ferengi all you want and scoff at them if you must, but there's a very valuable lesson in here for us all, which behooves us to be reminded of.
Sat, Nov 12, 2022, 8:02pm (UTC -5)
As usual, Armin Shimerman is the most well-rounded of the group—when given the chance, he pulls Quark out of the realm f a comic book caricature, and gives him depth. As a gamer, it’s always fascinating to me that this is the same actor who voiced Andrew Ryan in BIOSHOCK!
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