Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

"The Dogs of War"

3 stars

Air date: 5/24/1999
Teleplay by Ronald D. Moore & Rene Echevarria
Story by Peter Allan Fields
Directed by Avery Brooks

Review by Jamahl Epsicokhan

"Interesting, isn't it? The Federation claims to abhor Section 31's tactics, but when they need the dirtywork done, they look the other way. It's a tidy little arrangement, wouldn't you say?" — Odo to Sisko

Nutshell: Uneven, but it does well for setting us up for the grand finish while bringing closure to Quark's character arc.

There's a moment in "The Dogs of War" when Quark has had enough. He has watched as Ferengi society around him has become, in his view, a travesty. And he realizes he hasn't been immune from the changes over the years; he sees that he has gone "soft." He launches into a histrionic tirade that continues to build in amusement as Quark's disgust is unleashed. Then he yells: "The line has to be drawn here! This far, and no further!"

I couldn't stop laughing.

It perhaps helps to know that the line was lifted almost directly from the speech Picard made in First Contact, and that First Contact co-writer Ron Moore probably had it in mind when he co-wrote "Dogs of War." It's refreshing to see an inside joke taken to such a blatantly over-the-top, self-referential, take-us-none-seriously extreme. But despite the fact the jokes aren't meant to be taken seriously, there's something about the character undercurrent that can be. Quark's story—undoubtedly DS9's last visit to Ferengi society—is without a doubt comedy, but behind it is a bizarre ring of truth.

I've never been a big fan of Ferengi episodes. More often than not, I haven't enjoyed them. ("The Emperor's New Cloak," "Profit and Lace," "Ferengi Love Songs," "Prophet Motive," the list goes on.) The biggest problem is that Ferengi shows simply aren't funny, and they prove too obvious and overplayed. Some of the common Ferengi episode problems find their way into this episode. But the difference here is that we see now where Ferengi society has gone, and where Quark is standing when the music stops.

Quark's tale revolves around Zek's announcement of retirement and the fact Zek intends to name Quark the next Nagus. Quark is of course overjoyed. He looks forward to a new life of unending wealth, avarice, and indulgence. His mischievous planning begins. About this time, Brunt shows up. I must admit I laughed when Brunt instantly recited Rule of Acquisition number whatever: "It's never too early to suck up to the boss." Subsequently, Quark comes to realize how out of touch he has become with Ferengi society the past couple years. The entire social structure has changed under Zek and Ishka's new initiatives, and now we have a Ferenginar replete with social services, taxes ("Did you say the T-word?"), and regulated trade. None of this is remotely groundbreaking drama, but I was surprised at how unannoying it was compared to the average Ferengi episode. Perhaps the jokes were a little lower-key than most Ferengi shows—and I'm sure the limited screen time for Zek and Ishka helped matters as well. This storyline was actually relatively pleasant.

What makes this hold up is the character undercurrent. Even though developments in Ferengi culture in the past have been so badly handled that they cross into offensiveness ("Profit in Lace" especially), I think I finally see a payoff here to all the changes made, never mind their previous implausibility. That payoff is simple: Ferengi society has changed ... and Quark hasn't.

The full extent of the changes are what causes Quark to go on his tirade, and it's in Quark's comic fury where the storyline works best. It's almost as if the writers have finally figured out a usable joke for the Ferengi—the fact that the joke is really all on Quark. What he upholds as "what made Ferengi society great" has been erased and replaced with a new era of budding socialism. True, it's hopelessly oversimplified and unlikely any of this would happen within a two-year period, but that's not the point. What we have is Quark, a product of his time unwilling to go boldly into the future with the rest of Ferenginar. And, dammit, his bar will be the last standing representation of what made Ferenginar great—a society that is now being turned into a travesty.

Is this a great joke? Maybe not (and it probably doesn't make up for years of bad Ferengi shows), but it is a good joke that sends the Ferengi out with some dignity. As closure for Quark, it seems very appropriate. He's always been the type who sticks by his guns, and if it means being the last Ferengi to hold onto a dying system he believes in, so be it. Armin Shimerman pulls off this role with great adeptness, walking the line separating comedy and genuine dramatic urgency in a way that proves both amusing and sincere.

Of course, the joke upon the joke is that the whole notion of Quark becoming Nagus was a misunderstanding; it's Rom who Zek planned to make Nagus—which seems somewhat fitting under the notion that "a new Ferenginar needs a new type of Nagus." And besides, Mom always liked Rom best. (Well, maybe not overall, but in certain ways.)

There's plenty more to talk about in "Dogs of War," so I'll move on. The other pieces are in tune with the "Final Chapter" structure, paving the last mile heading to next week's series finale. The Kira/Damar/Garak plot takes a turn for the worse as the three narrowly escape capture when their ship is destroyed and a resistance force on Cardassia is betrayed and eliminated. With nowhere to turn, the three seek refuge in the cellar of Mila (Julianna McCarthy), Enabran Tain's confidant from years ago, and Garak's only remaining trustable contact on Cardassia. Subsequently, Weyoun delivers news over planet-wide viewscreens that all the resistance cells have been eliminated by Dominion forces, and Kira & Co. suddenly realize they may be spending the rest of the war in Mila's basement.

I enjoyed the Orwellian atmosphere in these scenes of a totalitarian state spreading the wonderful news ("This is a great day for the Dominion," Weyoun says with an impassioned sincerity) to the citizens of Cardassia. I also enjoyed the notion that rumors persist Damar is alive, even though Weyoun has assured the population he was killed when his ship was destroyed.

The ongoing Cardassia/Bajor parallels are proving incredibly interesting. Sisko once told Li Nalas, "Bajor doesn't need a hero; it needs a symbol." And now Cardassia needs just that from Damar, such that with the organized resistance destroyed, perhaps the civilian population will revolt. A key act of sabotage might help provide a spark; when Kira & Co. blow up a Jem'Hadar facility, Damar attempts to feed the legend by making a speech to the Cardassian people in the streets. Though the sequence itself was a tiny bit stilted (there's got to be a list somewhere of all the film characters who have shouted "Freedom!"), the idea is powerful. The Cardassia storyline is easily among the best things about these final episodes.

Another issue involves Odo learning Section 31 infected him with the disease. Odo is not happy. And when he calls Sisko on the Federation's willingness to look the other way, we see a difficult situation emerging that is bound to play into the finale. Starfleet now has the cure, but they aren't offering it up to the Founders. And they'd probably be foolish to do so. But the convenience of the situation certainly is interesting, and Odo unhappily points it out. Now what? Odo and this cure will obviously be a factor in the final equation, but how? Will Odo keep his word of not taking matters into his own hands? (I'm glad to see the issue hasn't been dismissed following "Extreme Measures," which failed to raise the important questions.)

Sisko also has some good moments, like his introduction to his new starship, the USS Sao Paulo, a Defiant-class ship that, naturally, Starfleet allows him to rename Defiant. While the addition of a new Defiant might seem to lessen the impact of the previous Defiant's death, the evident awe of Sisko settling into his new ship (including the nice, simple line, "Hello, ship") really makes the scene work.

Of a more foreboding nature for Sisko is the announcement that Kasidy is pregnant, and her understandable worry about the Prophets' warning. The pregnancy wasn't planned (which itself has me wondering about ominous prophecies), but Ben and Kasidy are both very excited about it, which makes me fear for the happiness and well-being of both of them. Does tragedy await? With the large-scale attack against the Dominion being planned by the end of the episode, anything is possible. Tune in next week, as they say.

Given all that's right with this episode, I almost hate to mention what's wrong. The biggest problem with "Dogs of War" is the sometimes-awkward, uneven structure. It's a bit jarring to move back and forth between the Ferengi comedy scenes and the starkly darker themes on Cardassia. And while it would've been wrong to forego closure for Quark, it's still pretty hard to look at the Ferengi story as a necessary part of this arc. Although it was successful, it pales in comparison to the other rich material we've seen the past two months, and when there are two stories as there are here, with such different priorities and tones, they tend to get in each other's way. I hope I'm not overstating the case. "Dogs of War" is good work—but it's disparate in its thought process, perhaps by definition, considering its various subplots.

Which reminds me (I nearly forgot, there's so much going on), we also get some resolution to the ongoing Bashir/Ezri soap operatics. While the mutual pursuit game was amiably portrayed here, it's simply not that interesting—unless you are one who has been anxiously awaiting the pairing of Dax and Bashir for the sake of itself. Unlike with Worf/Ezri earlier in the arc, Bashir/Ezri doesn't have dialog that offers anything new about the characters. It is what it is and nothing more. (At least we'll no longer have to wait around for this payoff.)

But never mind. We've got two hours of this series left, and this episode works as primer on some fronts and closure on others. It's a winner—even as a Ferengi show.

Next week: All good things must come to an end.

Previous episode: Extreme Measures
Next episode: What You Leave Behind

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132 comments on this post

Rob in Michigan
Sun, Sep 21, 2008, 3:04pm (UTC -5)
I'd be interested in folk's opinion on an idea that had been bouncing in my head all through S7... that the Ferengi could have really used a "serious" episode to show that they were more than (bad) comedy relief. And what better way to flesh out their entire 'arc' (especially as to the impact on Quark and Rom) then to have the Dominion attack Ferenginar (perhaps as punishment for their supplying weaponry to the Federation and its allies)?
What the Ferengi really needed desperately was some cultural depth, and having a true tragedy could have made up for a lot of the pain we viewers had to suffer previously. Ah, well... water under the bridge, now.
Rob in Michigan
Sun, Sep 21, 2008, 3:08pm (UTC -5)
Argh... I just thought of something else I've been wanting to bring up while reading your reviews: I was always just a bit disappointed that the rest of the various alien cultures in ST were ignored during the Dominion War. They could have had a "there's more going on than what we're seeing on screen" if there had just been throw away lines regarding the Tamarians, or something like "We've gotten unconfirmed reports that the Acamar system has been blockaded."
ST has a really bad habit of introducing alien characters for one episode and never mentioning them again. This was the perfect place to use a single line of dialog to acknowledge that the wider galactic community is being impacted by the war.
Tue, Dec 23, 2008, 11:22am (UTC -5)
This episode severely suffered from the comedy part not fitting in with the other story strands. I could have done without seeing Zek, Brunt and Moogie one more time. Or at least (Rob is right about that) they should have been given a more serious storyline for ending Quark's character arc.
Thu, Mar 12, 2009, 4:00pm (UTC -5)
Quark is my favorite regular character on DS9. He might be a stiff caricature of a 19th-century Dickensian taskmaster, but he's always true to himself.

I suppose the episode is a not-so-sly nod at what the writers think the future of civilization ought to be - steady socialism vice unbridled capitalism, but hey, fictional socialism can be entertaining. Although I still maintain that nothing is funnier than the Rules Of Acquisition.
Sun, Aug 23, 2009, 4:14pm (UTC -5)
Quark says he's going to replace the gold-pressed latinum fixtures with solid latinum, but didn't "Who Mourns For Mourn?" claim that latinum is actually a clear liquid?

One of the few areas where DS9 fails the continuity test.
Thu, Jan 14, 2010, 7:06pm (UTC -5)
@Rob- agreed completely. 'The 34th Rule' would have been perfect for this, and I believe it was indeed pitched.
@Straha- I think it was important to give Quark a role in the final stretch, and it's just like DS9 to put that where we least expect it.
@Jay- I believe Quark said that the Nagus' fixtures were 'coated' with gold-pressed latinum, and Quark was going to replace them with fixtures that were completely made of gold-pressed latinum. A toilet made ENTIRELY out of undiluted latinum would be worth more than all the wealth in the alpha quadrant- impossible even for a Nagus.
Marco P.
Mon, Aug 30, 2010, 10:47am (UTC -5)
"Uneven" is quite right.

In a way this almost feels like a fluff episode, because even though we have the Cardassia storyline, and the succession of the Grand Nagus is of direct importance to Ferengi and their homeworld society, it is treated with too much of a "light" tone I thought. Then again, Ferengi usually *are* the comic relief in DS9, so that was to be expected.

Then we have the Ezri/Bashir relationship, which somehow the writers have managed to drag on for several episodes, and which finally reaches its resolution. But is it just me, or did anyone else NOT care about this one? I thought in the long run, it just came out of nowhere! To me, it looked as if one second Ezri and Bashir are going about their business, Ezri still somewhat struggling about what it all means to be a joined Trill and Julian going about his genetically-enhanced life, trying to find a cure for Odo's disease and battling against Section 31 and whatnot. And then all of a sudden, the two characters realize they are in love with each other! I'm not saying this isn't what happens day-to-day in everyday life, but within the DS9 context... is it important? Are we supposed to *care* (for reasons other than our affection for the Bashir and Ezri characters)?

See, if we compare this to the way Jadzia/Worf get romantically involved, I felt the latter got handled with a bit more grace, that's all.

In any case, I'm curious to see what the final two episodes have in store for us.
Fri, Jan 14, 2011, 8:50pm (UTC -5)

I f**king hate the demonisation of the Federation! The fact that they would choose to withhold the cure from the founders is some writer's contrivance. It has no basis in the established doctrine of Federation procedures. At all. Odo's snide comment to Sisko is just too much to tolerate. Here's a perfect opportunity to demonstrate the idealism which defines Star Trek. The Federation offers the cure to the founders. No exchange, no cease fire, nothing. That kind of compassion (though I doubt the founders would care themselves enough to end the war) would be a gesture recognised by Breen and perhaps even the Vorta and would potentially weaken the Dominion's position. But no, take the pessimistic, genocidal option. F••k this show.
Thu, Jan 27, 2011, 5:32pm (UTC -5)
Sorry the Founders have shown little or no compassion towards the federation and there at war a war which they started so the answer is no
Thu, Jan 27, 2011, 5:58pm (UTC -5)
The rules which govern today's warfare do not govern the future's (as those of the past do not govern today's). One of the central features of the Federation is the moral high-ground, especially when it becomes difficult. It may be frightful and certainly risky to offer the Founders the cure, but it's still the right thing to do. Otherwise, what's left of the Federation after the war would not have been worth saving.
Fri, Jan 28, 2011, 8:33am (UTC -5)
Would this be the same moral high ground where they can't interfere in a situation even when they can save thier lives and the lives of their crews read Janeway and the Kazon who was perfectly happy to sacrifice her crew in order to retain the moral high ground and guess what the genocide of the founders is condemmed and what makes you think the founders wouldn't reason this action as a trick since they have no reason to trust them and the federation would be seen as weak by the Vorta and the Breen. Also the Vorta and Jemhader have with notable exception shown themselves to be completely obeident to the founders.

Also Roddenberry's rules should not govern how Star Trek should be run. Guess what it was Coon, Fontana and others who made Trek great. You know when he had full control of the Franchise it sucked TMP and TNG season 1 were awful why becuase of Gene Roddenberry.

Your problem is you treat Roddenberry's opinions and thoughts as dogma not his views all DS9 was dare to question this and you can't stand that
Thu, Feb 3, 2011, 3:47pm (UTC -5)

It has taken considerable effort to mill through the dribble you posted at me but I've garnered these points:

1) You think Janeway's decision to destroy the Caretaker's array was a case when adhering to principals was the wrong choice given the outcome.

2) You think that, strategically, it would be foolish for Starfleet to give the Founders the cure given the political structure of The Dominion as we've seen it.

3) At Roddenberry's direction ("full control of the franchise"), Trek "sucked."

4) You see me as treating Roddenberry's views as dogma and DS9 as courageous for "questioning" them.

Okay, well, let's dive in:

1) I'd rather not delve to deeply into a VOY issue on this page as it is a DS9 review, but Janeway's decision and its ramifications both ethical and circumstantial were adressed throughout its seven-year run right up unto the last episode. It was never laid to rest but discussed intelligently over time.

2) You seemed to have missed the point here. If these events were real, it is certainly possible that the Founders would have been completely cruel and made no offers for peace and certainly possible that neither the Breen nor the Vorta would respond in a positive way to the gesture either. If that were to be the case, 1) it wouldn't have mattered down the line except for Odo's final character development and 2) it STILL would have been the right thing to do. Machiavellian strategies have rarely been contested for their immediate effectiveness but for their moral contortions. What would be left of the Federation after this war? What kind of society could simply ignore the atrocious abandon of values it employed to win?

3) Gene Roddenberry was not a good cinematographist. His sense of television dynamics was dated and lacked the depth of his sci-fi vision. His "rules" never governed how a show could be developed, just how the Universe the characters inhabited could function. He defined reality for the franchise. Seasons 3 and 4 of TNG, which were excellent and some of the best television in history, still followed his "dogma."

4) I welcome an intelligent dissection of his or anyone's theories on screen, but DS9 rarely offered one. It CHANGED established realities about the Trek universe and never explained it. It then took the changed chess pieces and played them spouting the same rhetoric as in the Roddenberry days. The result? It sounds like those who follow his views are ignorant, foolish or hypocritical. But this sound is achieved by a deception, not an honest analysis of the views. Is Gene's world perfect? No, not at all. Is Earth paradise? Of course not, how stupid. But people on this series say things of this nature without provocation and set themselves up to be righted by more reasonable people. If the Federation really had been a bunch of brain-dead, doe-eyed optimists it never would have survived for so long.

A final note, please stop telling me to do things like "guess what" in your responses. I welcome debate, but you're just trying to rattle me.
Fri, Feb 4, 2011, 10:54am (UTC -5)
Elliot if you think i want to rattle you then to quote Nemesis "don't be so vain"

1) My reason for pointing Voyager was because you seem to like it so much and I was pointing out how stupid that was. Watching Voyager again it seems to me that they played it safe all the time whereas DS9 didn't and that's what I like about DS9 in some voyager should have done what DS9 did.

2) As you said if these events were real well Elliot it's a story and not real so why would it have been the right thing to do either way. The intention with the dominion war was to draw parralells with WW2 watch a nmuber of war episodes like benhind the lines or read the DS9 companion and you'll see my point so it could be argued that the virus is an allegory for the A-bomb.

3) My problem with Roddenberry is that many of the problems with TNG's first season were down to him he helped shoot down Blood and fire which could have been a fascinating story if filmed.

4) DS9 did not completely change Roddenberry's vision as Behr says in the compaanion which is a good read BTW that to have paradise you have to wrok your ass for it.

5) Coming from someone who said the mythos of trel should be treated as sacred like a coveneant and meant this literally talk dribble least i don't talk talk complete BOLLOCKS
Tue, Feb 8, 2011, 7:41pm (UTC -5)
See, this is what always happens in these DS9/VOY debates: Someone (in this case Jammer) who is either familiar (as in this case) with TOS and TNG and has a valid if biased literary critique judges the architectural devices employed in DS9 against the dated episodic format of VOY. I won't pretend that I didn't hope as much as anyone for the long story arcs and multi-episode developments of DS9 in my Voyager...but this is a WAY to tell a story. It is a style. Style cannot account for content. DS9 syphoned the mythology out of Trek. There have always been two schools of literary thought which oppose one another (Metastasio v. Bel Canto, Greek satyr v. mediæval palinode, etc.) and Trek was of the Romantic ideal of the mythic archetype. That means that the characters are larger than life and exist outside of the context of time. By that virtue, their actions speak to us as though from all directions. DS9 had human-scale characters. It is impossible to create these level characters in a society which is completely fictional (the Federation), so its characters are really just people from the 1990s who have starships and replicators. For me, this take ruined what was special about Star Trek and turned into any other show. In that context, the show had some definite positives, but it relied heavily on "biting commentary" about the Trek Universe to make its impact (you call it "playing it safe"). I'll say it again though, this commentary is a farce: if one changes the rules of the game it is an entirely new game. I think that maybe Trek should have died after TNG (seasons 6 and 7 were pretty bad overall), but since DS9 came along to muddy and confuse the situation deceptively, the relevance and staying power of Voyager became quite justified and necessary. Enterprise is another story...

I don't think you really know what you're saying in most of your responses to me, but I do believe you're implying that dropping the A-bomb was undoubtedly the right thing to do in WW2. I refuse to debate that with you, but it certainly proves my point: this is not the 24th century Federation, it's 1945 America.
Wed, Feb 9, 2011, 1:35pm (UTC -5)
the show was entertaining and scifi has changed since next gen, society has changed and tv shows need to adapt to the reality of the day and comment on that... to each their own, if one feels TNG was the best that is opinion, and other DS9.

although from my recollection, next gen picard was all about the Prime Directive, we cant interfere. But every episode involved him interfering in a roundabout clever way (Data setting up the mine field to show the Romulan interference was a good example), not violating the PD words but definitely violating the spirit of the law.
DS9 took it a step furhter and stopped trying to be clever in their hippocricy and proceeded to just violate the PD openly.
Wed, Feb 9, 2011, 1:47pm (UTC -5)
The Prime Directive is not really what I was talking about, but if you want to bring it up; the PD is a law. The best laws can and should be followed to the letter MOST of the time in most situations. A wise society however trains its citizens and especially its military leaders (Starfleet captains) to think critically about the application of the law and there are definitely cases in which a violation of the law is the right thing to do. Picard wasn't hypocritical in his violations. They are documented (see "The Drumhead") and explained on a case by case basis. DS9 didn't have too many dealings with the PD as it encountered mostly cultures which were allies or enemies. When Sisko did violate the PD it was not openly ("In the Pale Moonlight").

It was not a violation of the PD's spirit to expose Romulan involvement in the Klingon CW; it was simply extending the spirit of the law to a culture which was threatening the Federation's ally.
Wed, Feb 23, 2011, 11:29am (UTC -5)
to each their own, rationalization works to create grey,black,white areas where you want to see it

thinking about the whole Klingon CW, technically isnt the Federation responsible for it... Sela was born of future Yar, a federations officers choice to go to the past, and Sela's birth eventually lead to the the CW... too bad we didnt see much of Sela after the few episodes she was in. then again I doubt Romulans would take kindly to repead failures.
Thu, Feb 24, 2011, 11:35am (UTC -5)
"Blood and Fire" (the original story idea about homosexuals) was not shot down by Gene Roddenberry. Early in the fifth season he announced that there would be homosexual characters in an episode of TNG. Then he died, and the script was shot down by Rick Berman & others.

Anyway, getting back to "The Dogs of War", I agree that the shifting between the two otherwise great stories was a little jarring, but I don't see how it could have been otherwise. Quark's story arc needed closure, but a 100% Ferengi-centric episode at this point would have been too distracting from the main plot. It was better to 'get it out of the way' here rather than cram it into an already jam-packed finale.
Sat, Mar 12, 2011, 8:54pm (UTC -5)
CLOSURE? WHAT CLOSURE? Is it me or did Quark end the show that exact same way he began it? Only thing that was different was that he was a little nicer. That's about it. In some ways too damn nice. In the 7th Season he all but abandoned his greedy ways. Did he find someone to love, did he become rich, did anything he did have any affect on his life whatsoever. Hell no!!!!!! He went from being a nice greedy ferengi to being a nicer greedy ferengi. The writers dropped the ball royally with his character. Rom wasn't even a main character(he wasn't even a favorite back up like Nog or Martok) but he got more character progression then Quark.

I love DS9, but the writers deserve a boot in the ass for that screw up.
Sat, Mar 12, 2011, 11:11pm (UTC -5)
Although like Jammer I'm not a fan of most Ferengi episodes, I don't think the writers dropped the ball on Quark's character. In real life, some people change, and some people always stay the same. Quark is an example of the latter, and I think it's very appropriate that he ended the series pretty much where he started it.
Ron Mouse
Wed, Mar 16, 2011, 12:22pm (UTC -5)
I can't believe no one has said this yet but the Ferengis first ever episode on TNG was called "The Last Outpost" which guest starred "Armin Shimmerman" and now Quarks Bar is "The Last Outpost" of the Ferengi Alliance - brilliant.
Sat, Nov 19, 2011, 10:43am (UTC -5)
Rom's fortune sure has increased dramatically since he was bidding for Quark's dessicated remains to his offer for the bar here...who knew Starfleet paid its technicians so well?
Mon, May 7, 2012, 10:19am (UTC -5)
After reading this entire thread, the only thing I took out of jon's incoherent babbling and Elliot's usual, boring rejoinders was...

"The Mythos of Trel"

Is that a forgotten episode of TOS?
Tue, May 8, 2012, 5:07pm (UTC -5)
@Justin :

See my quote from Majel B.

Sorry I bore you, but if you have something relevant to say about this episode, please do. Your post is unnecessarily mean-spirited.
Sun, Jun 24, 2012, 7:56am (UTC -5)
I'm 100% behind all of the things Eliott has said above. Well done, Eliott, you did a bang-up job with this one.

Regarding this episode, Ezri and Julian's endless pussyfooting is ridiculous and not funny. Despite being described by Worf as an overgrown child, I haven't been buying that description of his character since season 2 and he is definitely too old for this. With Ezri it's even less believable because she has something like 300-odd years of memories of courting rituals.

As for Quark, his story made even less sense. Didn't the Quark already get appointed Grand Nagus by Zek, like wasn't that one of the first if not the very first did thing Zek did to him back when they first met? And it all turned out to be a big ruse to trap Quark, right? So why would he just blindly believe Zek, this time? He just walks right into it -- even to the point of selling his bar. This is not the same character as the Quark from season 1. This Quark is not even from the same universe as season 1.

Come to think of it, none of the Starfleet people are from the same universe either, nor is the Federation itself. Did we get permanently stuck in DS9's ridiculous mirror universe? Or did the DS9 writers get so infected with not caring (by not caring about the mirror universe characters) that they started to not care about the main universe characters, too? I mean why not, right? Apparently DS9 fans just eat that stuff up, regardless.
Wed, Jul 25, 2012, 9:15pm (UTC -5)
In the meantime the best part of the episode was the quick shot of the dedication plaque.
It was almost certainly done on purpose as you can see (especially on freeze frame) the names of the creative staff behind the show. This and the final scene in Quarks when many of the creative staff were in the audience is a nice tribute to the show.

As to the episode itself and the conclusion that follows. DS9 remians the second best, behind TOS, of the franchise.
Latex Zebra
Wed, Oct 24, 2012, 7:07am (UTC -5)
This Federation that is not giving the cure to the Founders is the same that got very angry with Picard for not wiping out the Borg (iBorg) when they had the chance.
A Federation that in Star Trek 6 had large sections that opposed peace with an enemy and instead wanted to bring them to their knees.
A Federation that, if you want to take this program seriously), went to go and destroy the Xindi after they attacked Earth.

Seems to me that the Federation may be a lovely place to live but if you threaten their existence they turn nasty.
Nothing inconsistent with previously established conventions IMO.
Wed, Dec 5, 2012, 4:14am (UTC -5)
What I'm about to rant about is not a way to destroy the show, but to give my perspective on things. DS9 was mostly a good show, for its story arcs and developements, for its incredibly well written and well acted guest characters and some of its humour.

But, and there's a big but, it wasn't true to what Star Trek stood for. Through my enjoyment of it, I often was angry at the same time.

In the last episode, seeing the two regulars who were very Starfleet resolve to use the "end justifies the means" plot was terrible. Here we have one of the "greyish" characters of the show tell a (not very) Starfleet captain that Starfleet is dirty ? I can't accept that in the Trek Universe. It's wrong in so many ways not to give a cure... (I won't be talking about the cloudy take on religion, but if my language was english, I surely would, in length :p). I just believe this show should have been produced outside of Trek: it could have been even better under other premisces.

Just a note to Latex Zebra: What happened in Enterprise was before the Federation existed.
Sat, Aug 31, 2013, 1:11pm (UTC -5)
DS9 is about DS9. It went in different directions and certainly toyed about with the Star Trek universe... good! Or at least, so what? It's fiction. It's an alternate view of the federation, and one that strikes a lot closer to the reality of what civilization and technology actually offers the human race and has done so throughout history. Sometimes it's dumb and mixed up, sometimes it's pretty smart and interesting. Same can be said for most Trek. The difference for me is that the "utopian" Star Trek of Roddenberry, while I appreciate it, is far too entrenched in the myth of progress and the false promises of modernity for me to take much of it seriously as social criticism. Civilization, government, technology, so-called "progress" - if we take history as a pattern, these things do more to destroy humanity than to uplift or enhance human life.

I like that DS9 is at least sometimes informed (seemingly) by alternate non-utopian and non-conformist views of these things. Whereas Roddenberry's Star Trek more often preaches the religion of statism, and continually reinforces the notion of state power as the savior of humanity.
Wed, Sep 18, 2013, 10:18am (UTC -5)
Amen Elliot. DS9 isnt scifi or particularly deep, it's just the usual xenophobic boogeyman villain stuff, relying on bad guy dialogue and super weapons. The first few seasons, when the Bajoran storylines were going on, were actually more complex and original than the dominian tales.
Wed, Sep 18, 2013, 8:16pm (UTC -5)
"DS9 isn't scifi"

DS9. Isn't. Scifi.

Words fail me.
Wed, Sep 18, 2013, 11:36pm (UTC -5)
In fairness, to say DS9 wasn't sci-fi is just silly, but I'm willing to assume that it was one of those emotional hyperboles...

I would foray to assume the sentiment stems from the fact that DS9's sci-fi features weren't usually very impressive and tended to have little to do with what the show did do well. Sci-fi doesn't have to be "deep," as Spencer lamented, but we Trekkers tend to like it deep, I believe.
Sun, Nov 10, 2013, 5:34pm (UTC -5)
Predictable episode.

Wed, Dec 18, 2013, 11:19pm (UTC -5)
Well, despite the uneveness of the plot threads, I don't really understand why the Federation covers the act of genozide without even considering to at least offer the dominion the cure **in exchange for their complete withdrawl from the Alpha quadrant.** The Founders might take that or not, but *then* it really is not anymore the Federation's problem. *Then* the Founders had the choice between what's more important for them: conquering the Alpha Quadrant or having the chance to survive.

However one might think about Roddenberry's legacy of the peacekeeping federation, of humanity that has overcome hunger, greed etc and evolved in a moral sense to another level - not even considering the opportunity described above was simply unnecessary since it questions *everything* 24th century-humanity stands for.

While that might work for DS9, it does not for Star Trek itself. And again, since it was completely unnecessary it leaves a sour taste, at least for me.

You're right Jammer, 'Extreme Measures' almost completely misses to point out - not to speak of discuss - the implications around the genozide (as just one of many disappointments of this episode). But putting Odo's - btw uncommented but very pointed - critizism aside, there's barely more moral struggle in this episode. I would call that a missed chance either.
Sat, Jan 4, 2014, 7:20pm (UTC -5)
So was this episode the third time they had Julian and Ezri collide in a corridor, or the 103rd? It seems like the latter.
Mon, Jan 20, 2014, 8:34am (UTC -5)
Where did Rom get 5000 bars of latinum? He didn't have even a small fraction of that much money when he got married. 5000 bars for the bar, but only 50 for a Nagus' ransom? Brunt seems to be the ideal Ferengi, Quark has seemed, by Ferengi standards, a bit soft.

I agree the changes in Ferengi society would not have happened so quickly, but the show only has a short amount of time. The changes would probably have taken place over decades, but they could not have happened at all if there hadn't been pent up demand for these changes.

We have a reduction in the power of the Nagus, with decisions requiring ratification, and this reminds me of the Magna Carta. Previously, the Nagus could be deposed, but if he wasn't deposed, his decree was law. The Ferengi Commerce Authority had been used to bully dissenters, and with the changes on Ferenginar, presumably they won't have this power. The FCA will have a still have a job to do, but it will be different.
Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 12:28am (UTC -5)
What irritates me about the Ferengi nonsense is that I've actually read books. They portray capitalism as something that makes people greedy and selfish, but when you look at it historically, the most equal and fair nations have become so in the capitalist periods. In some nations, equality means women logging just as many trees as men in the frozen tundra.

The Ferengi in this series feel like an outlet for very bad propaganda, or else clumsily handled political drivel.
Paul M.
Tue, Jan 28, 2014, 6:48am (UTC -5)
@Nissa: "They portray capitalism as something that makes people greedy and selfish, but when you look at it historically, the most equal and fair nations have become so in the capitalist periods."

While it's certainly true that the world advanced the most and achieved the greatest standard of living during capitalism, it should be noted that the greatest social equality is achieved in the European-style social-democratic capitalism.

Now I'll shut up as I have no intention of steering the thread into a political argument.
Mon, Feb 10, 2014, 4:15am (UTC -5)
Unfortunately, Paul, as I've seen it, sometimes the political arguments seem to find their way into the show, whether we like it or not.

To me, it always seemed like at least a few of the writers despised what Quark and the Ferengi stood for- the greed, the capitalism, etc. To these writers, the best way of them to express their politics against capitalism was to make Quark suffer.

So we got episodes and dialogue that, quite honestly, had characters treating Quark very, VERY rudely. This despite the fact that he actually showed traits of kindness, courtesy, bravery and self-sacrifice at times. Would purely self-interested profit monger bend his knee, ready to die at the hands of a Klingon, to help save the house of Grilka? I don't think so. And who was the one who organized the rescue of Ishka, while Rom basically ran around crying? Quark.

I guess what I see as the problem is that Quark isn't just "the greedy capitalist" or whatnot- Armin and (a few) of the writers gave him a depth and nuance that went beyond the shallow one-dimensional stereotype, and the rest of the writers then proceeded to shove him into episodes that made every other Ferengi around him look like a ridiculous idiot. It might have been "funny" for some, but it was just sigh inducing on many occasions.
Sun, Feb 23, 2014, 8:09pm (UTC -5)
Here's a perfect opportunity to demonstrate the idealism which defines Star Trek. The Federation offers the cure to the founders. No exchange, no cease fire, nothing. That kind of compassion (though I doubt the founders would care themselves enough to end the war) would be a gesture recognised by Breen and perhaps even the Vorta and would potentially weaken the Dominion's position.

Are you serious? On what planet are you living?
Mon, Feb 24, 2014, 6:47pm (UTC -5)
"While it's certainly true that the world advanced the most and achieved the greatest standard of living during capitalism"

Capitalism has more blood on its hands than any other epoc, with the US alone waging 3.4 overt and covert wars a year. And remember, the world "advanced" under slavery too (there are more slaves under capitalism then at the height of chattel slavery, not to mention 80 percent of the planet on less than ten dollars a day). Indeed, the "civil rights" fought for under the epoch of capitalism (which is over 400 years old and encompasses some of the most brutal and bloody periods of history) tend to be opposed by the ruling/capitalist class and fought for by those outside the system.

"Are you serious? On what planet are you living?"

I thought Elliot's A-bomb comment answered this stuff succiently.

, it should be noted that the greatest social equality is achieved in the European-style social-democratic capitalism.
Wed, Feb 26, 2014, 2:48am (UTC -5)
"Are you serious? On what planet are you living?"

There is no better proof that Elliott is right than this misplaced question. Why? Well, this question is sort of demanding Elliott and others to see DS9 precisely with more 20-21st century realism in mind. This question makes it clear how DS9 at this point was just extrapolating 20th reality to the Trek universe to the point of making this question above to be possible. It would have been a non-sense question from a TOS or TNG viewer.

That is exactly why Elliott has said that DS9 was (for me it became at some point) just 1990 men with phasers and replicators. More 1945 America than 24th future society. People have to stop confusing things: if one thinks that the direction DS9 took Trek was for the better, this is fine and is a right anyone has of feeling as they please. Another thing less idiosyncratic is to say that DS9 did not change Trek's universe. Federation was idealistic, utopian-like, romantic, during decades of show, films, cartoons and so on. Now, it is so pragmatic that accepts to pursue genocide and leads people to ask here "on what planet are you living?". If this turn from utopia to realism is not a change, well, I don't know what is the definition of change for DS9 fans.

Oh, and do not get me wrong: I really liked DS9 for many seasons. Was also quite a fan. Even noticing its flaws, I welcomed its different approach to the Trek universe. But limits have to exist and DS9 forgot it and crossed the line miserably.

Lastly, it strikes me as chocking that people really think that "being at war" justifies everything. Or remembering that "they were at war" should make them, who say this, seem more realist, pragmatic, less naïve, and so on. Even in 20th century and now, committing a complete genocide - i.e. killing even all civilians of another country during a war - is not exactly common stuff. If people really wanna follow this line of argument presently realistic, let’s go full steam. The genocide friendly Federation is not realistic with what most countries have done the last 100 years. It is then more like 17th century, or at the most closer to the common sense imagination of the 20th century nazi. Realism hurts, right?
Fri, Mar 7, 2014, 8:19am (UTC -5)
Corey - "Capitalism has more blood on its hands than any other epoc"

Ah, the wonderful sound of today's public education dogma. Open your books students, today we will study America the Evil Empire.

Frankly, the Ferengi-going-socialist arc was rather embarrassing. The Ferengi were first introduced as clownish villains who represented the evils of capitalism in TNG. They were laughable villains but it goes beyond the initial bad makeup, their "evil ways" were never believable to the viewer. Capitalism is simply the ability for free people to interact freely. Try as you might, the only way to make liberty scary is to lie about it. The best Quark episodes were the ones where he stood up for Ferengi capitalism and stated that Ferengi might not be nice but they were honest businessmen. OF course, left leaning writers never could leave it at that and so the Ferengi hardly ever behaved honestly. On the other hand the Federation is well documented as being some form of socialist utopia which doesn't use money and is an impossibility of human nature.

Corey uses some of the hilariously ludicrous "factoids" that socialists love to toss around against capitalism. We all know that the planet was a peaceful dreamland of equality and bounty, where no war was ever waged through the thousands of years of its history; that is until the one day that capitalism reared its hideous head, then we had wars galore! Oh no, look out, capitalistic rulers will force you to do their bidding by "paying" you to work for them! I remember my first experience with capitalist oppression like it was yesterday. I was 16 and minding my own business, when the manager of a 7-11 accosted me off the sidewalk and forced me to work in his store at gunpoint!

Now, if we just listen to Corey there and surrender all our liberty then life would be so much more fair for everyone.
Andy's Friend
Fri, Mar 7, 2014, 9:53am (UTC -5)

You’re missing the point. Mentalities change. Societies change. And people change with them.

My great-grandfather, who was an Army officer and fought in the Great War, would look at most men today and call them women.

Any factory owner in the Western world in late 19th century would look at any factory owner today and call him a Socialist:

― ’What’s wrong with having twelve year old children working in the factory?!’
― ’What’s wrong with repeating the same motions twelve hours a day six days a week?!’
― ’What’s wrong with expecting a woman to be back at work two days after childbirth?!’
― ’Breaks every hour?! Give me a break, what’s wrong with you?!’

Any Scandinavian government in the late 19th century would look at any of their governments today and call them Socialist.

Any Southern European government in the late 19th century would look at any of their governments today and call them Socialist.

Any American administration in the late 19th century would look at Obama’s administration today and call it Socialist. And it’s still a long way from the Scandinavians today.

Was Scandinavia overall a better place to live in the late 19th century that the United States? I don’t think so. Is Scandinavia overall a better place to live today than the United States? I think there can be little doubt about it.

Think about it.

The highly scientifically advanced ― for their age ― Romans delighted in watching men butcher each other to death in the arena. They even enjoyed watching humans being killed by beasts.

Don’t tell me that people don’t change. That mentalities don’t change. That societies don’t change.

Read about the past. Look at the present. Imagine the future. That’s what Star Trek does.
Fri, Mar 7, 2014, 1:32pm (UTC -5)
"Ah, the wonderful sound of today's public education dogma. Open your books students, today we will study America the Evil Empire".

Ah, the wonderful smell of Cold-War thinking, which cannot deal with basic critics and even sees a phantom where it was not... This reply is the paradaigm of missing the point.

"Capitalism is simply the ability for free people to interact freely".

Really? Really? Gesus, god bless the educational books that deliver more nuanced and critical understandings about anything - Capitalism, Socialism, whatever - than this.

Let's hope for a better future in the 24th century.
Fri, Mar 7, 2014, 6:31pm (UTC -5)
"Open your books students, today we will study America the Evil Empire."

America is pretty much an evil Empire. It's usually only Americans who are unaware of how much of a neo-Colonialist Empire the "land of the free" really is. I've lived through 3 of its coups in Greece, one of its coups in Guyana and watched it wipe out all the opposition governments after Trinidad became independent (how dare you nationalise your oil!). The past 100 years is basically the 4 major Empires, and their economic arms (the World Bank, IMF and BIS), slaughtering governments, sponsering proxy militias and reordering nations to benefit them.

"Frankly, the Ferengi-going-socialist arc was rather embarrassing."

Yeah, but Quark keeps the faith and it's Quark who the audience loves watching precisely because he's an uber capitalist.

"Capitalism is simply the ability for free people to interact freely."

There's a reason three of the major physicists of their time (Einstein, Soddy, Edison) were hardcore anti-capitalists (Einstein outright called capitalism "the source of evil"): it is a totally nuts system.

The sheer level of "freedom rhetoric" ascribed to "capitalism" pretty much tells you the truth is precisely the opposite. As I said earlier, 80 percent of the world lives on less than 10 dollars a day, there are more slaves under capitalism then under the epoch of slavery, there are more black men in prison in the US than were anybody in Stalin's gulags (and more blacks in US prisons than there were black slaves in the US in 1850) and our global debt clock is so high that we'd need 15 planet earths worth of resources to pay it back. A middle class lifestyle for everyone would itself take 5 planet earths worth of resources.

Not to mention the totally immoral means in which money is created (as debt, at interest, randomly by banks whenever you ask for a loan). The economist Georgescu-Roegen summed up the result of this succintly: "There is never enough money "in capitalism" to pay back the money owed "to capitalism"."

If you've played the game Monopoly, you see how capitalism always ends up: the wealth pools in one direction and cash has to be loaned out to the "loser players" to keep the Ponzi running. AI simulations by economists like Peter Victor also show us how the system must exponentially create unpayable debts, that anyone X out of debt puts another in a correponding X level of debt (and so poverty is inescapable), and that the system exponentially increases (by expanding markets and relying on new births to push debt onto) in order to stop from collapsing. And of course capitalism must expand or die and must continually go through cycles of booms and busts, in which wealth is pooled further with each crash.

What's interesting about this expansion is that it necessitates a 3 percent annual increase in global energy (and so heat). It's been expanding at this rate like clockwork for hundreds of years.

"OF course, left leaning writers never could leave it at that and so the Ferengi hardly ever behaved honestly."

Strictly speaking, most "left leaning people" are firmly right wing. Indeed, the contemporary left exists only to support capitalism by creating checks, balances and "humane" policies to cater for the system's more ruthless excesses (for example capitalism is inherently unable to provide full employment). The mainstream left basically keeps the con running. Unsurprisingly, things like the New Deal and American welfare systems were supported by huge banks and insurance firms - throw the people a bone or they revolt entirely.

"We all know that the planet was a peaceful dreamland of equality and bounty, where no war was ever waged through the thousands of years of its history; that is until the one day that capitalism reared its hideous head"

Merchantile capitalism started in the Middle Ages. Immanuel Wallerstein wrote a series of books basically explaining that feudalism was itself capitalism (or rather that feudalism never quite existed as we think of it, as most social scientists now believe)

"I remember my first experience with capitalist oppression like it was yesterday. I was 16 and minding my own business, when the manager of a 7-11 accosted me off the sidewalk and forced me to work in his store at gunpoint!"

Where did the person whom your manager bought his land from, get the land? How did the money in this market originate? Who has the monopoly on money creation? Who makes the products in the shops? As worker are never paid enough to buy all the products they produce, what do you think HAS TO HAPPEN to the manager's shop? Capitalism is not some silly 2 party game where one person sells and one person buys.

"Now, if we just listen to Corey there and surrender all our liberty then life would be so much more fair for everyone."

Echelon, Prism and Muscular say hello.

"Ah, the wonderful smell of Cold-War thinking, which cannot deal with basic critics and even sees a phantom where it was not... This reply is the paradaigm of missing the point"

The irony is, most of the education systems in Europe are governed by both the nation's Ministry of Education and Ministry of Economics/Finance. Public education is geared toward serving "capitalism", and even economics courses and business schools focus only on micro and not macro economics. The result is millions of kids who never realy learn about how their entire social landscape operates.
Mon, Apr 14, 2014, 6:42pm (UTC -5)
@Rob in Michigan. Love, love, loooooove those ideas. I remember when I first watched 'Valiant' and how Jake and Nog talk about how Starfleet sending Nog on some mission to Ferenginar or somewhere might lead to the Ferengi helping out in the war. I was really just hoping to see some of those big Ferengi ships we saw on TNG turn up on DS9. That second point, man I remember thinking up strategies where the Tholians and Gorn would make some kind of appearance, or at least just their ships. Plus, anyone remember in Voyager's 'Scorpion' where they talk about the Breen having organic ships? I always hoped those guys would show up with a Vorlon-type ship, but on the good guys side. Around about this same time Babylon 5 had the end of it's 4th season and they have that combined fleet of all the major races heading to liberate Earth. I would have loved something like that!
Sat, May 3, 2014, 8:38pm (UTC -5)
Dan is spot on the money, but arguing with left wing types is a waste of time. They live in la-la land.
Mon, May 5, 2014, 6:50pm (UTC -5)
Those damn lefties and their fighting for worker rights, democracy, civil rights, human rights, fighting against imperialism, colonialism, racism, exploitation, fighting for fair pay, for weekends, fighting against slavery, fighting for actual pay, holiday, shorter work hours (the 21 hour week wasn't so bad. Damn you lefties!), fighting for the environment etc.

Why can't the left be more like the right and fund terrorists, put dictators in power, oppose independent movements, oppose democratic elections and side with kings, queens and fascists. Damn lefties.
Wed, May 21, 2014, 3:51am (UTC -5)
I agree with the review's beginning: I couldn't help but scream out loud and repeat Quark's "line has to be drawn here and no fuuuuthaaaa" over and over again. Awesome delivery!
Tue, Aug 26, 2014, 8:35am (UTC -5)
Dan, thank you for that wonderful account of history.

Spencer, you post is so categorically factually incorrect I just am not going to take the time to go through it.

Socialism fails every time.

Capitalism has lifted more people out of poverty than any "concept" in the WORLD's history. If there is a falsity, it’s the banking system, not capitalism. Oh, who created the 5 day work week and DOUBLED his employees’ wages? …. Hint, it wasn’t the frakin unions. Unions were needed once, now they are just a funding line for the DEM party.

Dictatorships just tally up piles of bodies…

Socialism fails because it ALWAYS runs out of other people’s money.

The West is becoming more fascist by the year. Note: Don’t let a government that financially is dependent on you, educate you.

I don’t like the way the Ferengi have been used to portray bad capitalism. Funny, written by lefty millionaires you know.

But on to this episode.

When Quark “played Picard” I was ON THE FLOOR! LOL wow Armin, you nailed it!!

Brunt kissing “ass” was funny, another great performance by Jeffry.

Rom ends up Nagus in a “not so Ferengi empire. Good luck.

I didn’t care one iota about Bashir & Ezri

The only reason the Cardassian rebellion is intriguing is that Garak is present.

Sisko is going to be a Dad again? Why?

We are set up for a big battle. Wow, didn’t see that one coming. I wonder who is going to win?

Average. 2.5 stars.
Tue, Aug 26, 2014, 11:45am (UTC -5)
@Yanks :

"Dan, thank you for that wonderful account of history."

Excuse me, you mean those like 2 sentences he wrote?

"Spencer, you post is so categorically factually incorrect I just am not going to take the time to go through it.

Socialism fails every time."

What are you talking about? Has Norway's economy failed? How about Iceland or the Netherlands? Any system can work--China's economy is working, isn't it? The question is what quality of life a system creates for its people. Capitalism can work fine provided the State creates barriers and safeguards against monopolisation and abuse (like unions), and Communism works fine provided there are state-mandated market incentives.

The Federation economy is different because it is post-scarcity. When you can replicate anything you need or want, transport to the other side of a planet on a whim, and terraform planets to support human colonisation, there is no economic incentive to work, and therefore no need for money.
Tue, Aug 26, 2014, 12:17pm (UTC -5)

No, his one sentence post about arguing with lefties.

Spencer's post was a right/left attack. Look up who voted for what before "claiming" victory.

You can go ahead and say "if" and suport socialist/communist governments. Go live there. Don't come crawling to me when they fail.

I want freedom and capitolism (yes, with rules). Funny you left out my comment on the banks. The TRUE route of all evil in the world. Iceland is the most current and accurate example of what removing regulation from the banking industry allows. Unions were once needed but over time have become just a political arm.

The ONLY reason Earth doesn't require money in Trek is becuase of technology. I've always believed that Gene's "vision" would not have been possible (accept in a dream) with out replicators.
Tue, Aug 26, 2014, 12:55pm (UTC -5)
@Yanks - "Unions were once needed but over time have become just a political arm"

I do agree we will reach a point where unions are not needed. As of today I tend to find them to be more benevolent than the people they are fighting against, but with worse press.

I won't specifically mention which unions I support (I do not belong to one however), but I will say that every contract brings worse things for the union members and that without the union I'd expect it to be even worse.

I will say that all attempts to break unions (at least government ones) have resulted in worse service from said governments. As a parent I will point to the travesty that are charter schools (yes, I know many parents swear by them, but considering they rig their scores, lower their class sizes and cherry pick their students at the expense of the rest of the populace claiming they are a success is a lot like championing an operation that'll save your foot at the cost of your leg).

As to non-government unions... I can't speak to that, but unions are far from an outdated political arm. We can complain about how much political power unions have after the last lobbyist loses their job :)
Tue, Aug 26, 2014, 4:28pm (UTC -5)

IMO government unions should be illegal. The Teachers unions strikes at the expense of the taxpayers and the children they are paid by the taxpayers to teach. They weald WAY to much political power. Look at that last TU strike in Chicago... eeesh. They "HAD" to have more, even though they already were being paid more that the people in the community. It was sad.

I actually have no problem with unions that do their job. PRotect their people, ensure working conditions are safe and fairly paid.

My youngest is now being homeschooled because of the inept public school system. I like charter schools. Why on earth should a child be forced to attend a bad school. There is no reason on earth. That's saying that I'm paying taxes so my children have to get a substandard education. If the public school system was doing all that great, charter schools would have never surfaced. No we have to deal with "Common Core" as well. They are digging themselves a hole, it just gets deeper and deeper.
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 8:24am (UTC -5)
A good public school should be a right for all or none. Charter schools give to the "lucky"* few at the EXPENSE of everyone else. They DO NOT run in a zero sum, here is a better school and the other schools stay untouched game. Charter schools surfaced as a political tool to break unions. They are not there to serve you.

And as I said, EVERY union contract I have heard of recently has caused the union to lose ground on a dozen things for some more money. Politicians refuse to negotiate with unions in good faith. Here in NY, when the teachers last went on strike (which hasn't happened in forever... 1968) the majority of the public was with them.

I disagree with a lot of union policies, but in the end they are mostly more benevolent than the governments/corporations they serve. As for Chicago, I'm sure the issues were deeper than "they had to have more". As I said, unions get bad press (a hint as to why? they aren't the ones in the equation with the real power... but the guys with the power want you to think the unions have them by the balls).

*These kids aren't actually lucky, it tends to be rigged to make the charter's look better. They don't go to a low performing neighborhood and beat the local school by actually having better programs/teachers. They just snatch away the best kids.....
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 8:31am (UTC -5)
You can of course feel free to disagree, and perhaps Charter schools do better where you're from, but here they do things like.... running a for profit school in Manhattan paying ZERO rent because our temper tantrum prone mayor that didn't want to negotiate with the unions wanted more non union schools and gave them space (for FREE) in existing schools. And then the new mayor took hell for shutting them down.

How does that work in a free competitive market? If you ran a grocery store and the government gave me half of it rent free to run my own grocery store I could put you out of business with my prices because I wasn't paying rent.... Here in NY charter schools are a joke that get good press because parents crying on TV makes for good ratings.

Your premise, that public schools suck, may not be wrong... but the guys holding the purse strings that could improve said schools give more money to administrators and then to charter schools designed to sink the low performing public schools instead of improving them. It's a lot like curing a disease by killing a patient.

I guess it just comes down to me having a much lower opinion of the government and of corporations than I do of unions....
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 8:59am (UTC -5)
My premise isn't they suck, 4 of my kids graduated public schools. My youngest requires some special attention and they weren't able to provide it to our satisfaction. That's where "one size fits all" we get in state run schools falls short sometimes.

There are parents lining up for charter schools for a reason. Until the state run schools understand that, nothing will improve and "Common Core" most certainly isn't the answer.
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 9:03am (UTC -5)
Oh, and "rigged" is a relative term. They teach the SOL's for 3 weeks prior to giving them here. How that isn't seen a "rigging" is beyond me.

What's the difference between public schools and charter schools? It's not the kids, it's the Teachers Union.
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 9:25am (UTC -5)
"My premise isn't they suck, 4 of my kids graduated public schools. My youngest requires some special attention and they weren't able to provide it to our satisfaction. That's where "one size fits all" we get in state run schools falls short sometimes."

For sure, and it's getting worse. Schools are now expected to service all but the most severe cases in the classroom now, whereas previously that was not the case. I can't imagine these kids get what they need. And my kids go to public school too, but I selected my house SPECIFICALLY so they could go to a good one. For every kid like mine someone else goes to a substandard school.

"Oh, and "rigged" is a relative term. They teach the SOL's for 3 weeks prior to giving them here. How that isn't seen a "rigging" is beyond me."

Teaching to the test is ridiculous, but it's nothing new... I was having it done to me in school 30 years ago. I doubt that charters do that any differently or not.

"What's the difference between public schools and charter schools? It's not the kids, it's the Teachers Union."

I won't persist arguing this on a ST forum, but I did explain several differences that you mostly rejected. If you honestly believe the charter schools are "better" because of the absence of the teacher's union.... all I can say is that I hope the Kool Aid was yummy because you're buying what the politicians are selling. You really should read up on all the horrible things charters are doing to "pretend" to be better than the local schools. They are nothing more than a propaganda piece designed to scapegoat educations problems on the teachers instead of the politicians. There is a LOT of reading to be done out there if you want the truth.

But I've said my peace, I've enjoyed chatting with you and reading your reviews and while I was tempted to start sourcing 100 reasons why charter schools are NOT the solution to the problem you present (or the teacher's union the cause) if I'm going to have 20 thread post about something on here I'd rather it be the nature of the prophets or if Phlox was wrong for not curing the Valakians.
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 10:05am (UTC -5)

No problems. I have done a bit of reading, probably not as much as you. Of course there are good and bad. nothing is perfect. I'm not saying that charter schools are the Holy Grail but I will stick to my point. Why are parents wanting to remove their kids from public schools? Until that is answered, and answered truthfully, nothing will change.

Phlox was a prophet!!! lol
Wed, Aug 27, 2014, 10:12am (UTC -5)
"Why are parents wanting to remove their kids from public schools? Until that is answered, and answered truthfully, nothing will change. "

No argument here! I just think that the proposed solution is like killing a patient to stop a disease. It may solve your immediate problem, but I don't know that you enjoy what you're left with :P

The point you are sticking with is not wrong though.
Tue, Sep 16, 2014, 11:10pm (UTC -5)
Oh good Lord. It is insanely ironic. In the comment section about a show which successfully hosted grey content; most of you are simplifying extremely complex issues into black and white.

This is the simplest way to say it. Neither socialism nor capitalism is "right." Both have good and bad points. Both are highly grey. Right is relative.

Anyway, about the actual show. It is fine if you do not like DS9 based soley on it not fitting in with an idealized-Roddenberry vision. Saying that is also fine, to a point. But I see many repeat names (Elliot being the most prolific, I believe) commenting on every episode the same diatribe. "DS9 sucks because the Federation isn't being portrayed as a Roddenberry utopia."

We get it. We get why you don't like it. Hammering that into every episode's comment section is ultimately self-defeating. You just come across as a whiny DS9-hater chest-thumping for the sake of being heard.

Most of you are better than that; your intelligence shows it. So at least step up your game and give us something else if you must keep commenting about the same subject.
Wed, Sep 17, 2014, 10:58am (UTC -5)

"In the comment section about a show which successfully hosted grey content; most of you are simplifying extremely complex issues into black and white."

I'd take exception to the "successfully hosted grey content" portion, but I agree with your conclusion here.

" I see many repeat names (Elliot[t] being the most prolific, I believe) commenting on every episode the same diatribe. 'DS9 sucks because the Federation isn't being portrayed as a Roddenberry utopia.'"

No mention of the "insanely ironic" here? That you have reduced criticism of this show (or at least mine) to a repetitive (yet somehow also prolific) "diatribe" about Roddeberrian Utopia.

This episode's comment thread alone has 8 postings from me (not including this one) spanning almost four years' time--does it really take that much writing to say I'm a DS9-hater? Please. If you don't want to read my comments, that's entirely your prerogative, but please don't snidely dismiss what you've obviously chosen not to bother to understand.

That DS9 didn't "fit with" or chose to undermine the TOS/TNG Federation vision is not a subject with which I take issue, it's the *how.* And the *how* differs (usually) from episode to episode, thus meriting a specific response. Because you've already chosen to corral any criticism of the DS9 ethos into a "well, it's not what Roddenberry would have wanted" camp, you see any comments to that effect as being repetitive, when they are not. I would speculate that this belief is bolstered by your claim that DS9 "successfully hosted grey content," which I find at least partly erroneous. DS9 certainly liked to host grey content, but it very often failed to actually give voice to points of view which contribute to those real-world dilemmas such situations allegorised, making its philosophical content often woefully one-sided and intellectually stilted in some New Age, college sophomore-level mediocrity.
Wed, Sep 17, 2014, 12:37pm (UTC -5)
@Elliott - On my own pondering of greyness...

First to your point about giving voice to opposing points of view.

1) Tuvix - This was as grey an episode/theme set as it got, and Captain Janeway's final action should have been very controversial... but literally everyone agreed with her (except maybe the doctor, but he barely even morally objected, he just couldn't do the procedure without consent).

2) For The Uniform - Sisko poetically poisons a planet in such a way that humans cannot live there but Cardassians can, some might say poetic justice (including me) since they can switch with the Cardassians who the Maquis poisoned earlier, but the closest we got to an objection is Worf hesitating to push the torpedoes for a second. And he didn't clear it with Starfleet.

These are grey episodes and themes, but on TNG Dr. Crusher would have been forcefully making her case, and possibly a few others. That said, I don't know that it makes DS9 intellectually stilted and sophomoric or that it failed to host grey content. I feel like what was grey about DS9 (in a refreshing way) was that we were not always supposed to agree with our heroes. Take "Hippocratic Oath". I THINK the episode intended for us to agree with Bashir, but I'm not sure. And even if it did, that sort of makes O'Brien the villain of the piece.

The successfully grey pieces were the characters. Some had their dark sides added better than others (Sisko/Kira's dark sides were explored MUCH better than Odo's in my opinion) but they all felt more like real people in some ways than the TNG crew. They had rough edges. Where it did fail is that when dealing with questionable content you often want somebody objecting (it can be horrifying as in Tuvix when something like that is going down and nobody objects). But I don't know that it happened on DS9 as often as you think it did. That was handled better in TNG though.

VOY I usually felt like the characters were too broken by their dictator to disagree with her....
Wed, Sep 17, 2014, 12:53pm (UTC -5)
I think that in earlier seasons of DS9 they had those kinds of TNGish round table discussions (like the discussion in Playing God about destroying the proto universe), but in later seasons (especially in the middle of the war) they just had less time for those kinds of scenes and so they did away with a lot of them. A lot of S2/S3 episodes had pieces like that when it was needed (Blood Oath, The Maquis, The Abandoned, and Life Support to name a few... even some later episodes like Children of Time had them).

I don't usually feel like it was detrimental to the episode to not have it either, but sometimes it was. The real issues were things that took place in the war like Odo/Sisko not resigning on the spot when the Federation ordered him to not stop the genocide of the founders, or nobody blinking when he poisoned a planet or everyone going back to being buddies with Odo the day after he betrayed them. The show often tried to tackle some themes that were greyer than they were willing to handle. But I think it was rare.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 11:42am (UTC -5)
"The successfully grey pieces were the characters."

Well, that doesn't really work, does it? I mean, yes, in order to deal with moral dilemmas in dialogue, you need characters with differing views to debate the issue in some fashion, so having a mélange of personalities and ethics is good on a show like DS9. BUT, most of the characters' diverse views were never properly scrutinised--Kira's credulity, O'Brien's false optimism, Sisko's Machiavellianism, Jake's naïvety, Dax' childishness. Don't get me wrong, the views were *addressed* but they weren't scrutinised--the characters never had to answer for or justify their positions, they just had them. Thus, the audience was shortchanged a real grey-area polemic in favour of bland multiculturalism.

I personally saw "Tuvix" and Tuvix very differently from the majority. I never considered Tuvix to be a person in his own right. As he himself noted, he had "the will to live of two men." His sense of self-preservation made him *seem* like a person, but it was simply a product of Tuvok's and Nelix' senses of self-preservation commingling. Janeway's dilemma was setting aside her (and her crew's) emotional, sentimental response to Tuvix' pleas in order to do what she had to to save her officers. Doc's objection also makes sense in this reading as his programming is very rigid when it comes to protecting life, the philosophical considerations of said life be damned.

"VOY I usually felt like the characters were too broken by their dictator to disagree with her..."

Oh, don't tell me you've hopped on the SFDebris Janeway-the-crazy-dictator bandwagon, too!?
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 1:12pm (UTC -5)
"Well, that doesn't really work, does it? I mean, yes, in order to deal with moral dilemmas in dialogue, you need characters with differing views to debate the issue in some fashion, so having a mélange of personalities and ethics is good on a show like DS9. BUT, most of the characters' diverse views were never properly scrutinised--Kira's credulity, O'Brien's false optimism, Sisko's Machiavellianism, Jake's naïvety, Dax' childishness. Don't get me wrong, the views were *addressed* but they weren't scrutinised--the characters never had to answer for or justify their positions, they just had them. Thus, the audience was shortchanged a real grey-area polemic in favour of bland multiculturalism."

I'm not 100% sure what you're getting at here to be honest. My point was just that these grey, imperfect characters felt more real than the archetype-out-of-the-character-bible characters that we got more of on other shows.

Like Kira has an arc that starts long before the series begins. It's got a lot of dark in it, but it's also got a lot of light and in S1 it has her learning to forgive herself ("Battle Lines") and eventually even confronting her own hate ("Duet"). And by the end it takes her full circle and puts her in the roll of a terrorist... helping the people she used to terrorize. I'm not sure you mean that her "credulity" was never scrutinized... but by the end of S7 she was a real person, with a real story and real shades. Compare to Harry Kim or Tuvok or Neelix... none of whom really grew that much past their character bible descriptions. Sure they'd have their moments, but it'd be gone again by the next episode. Big, big, big exception for the Doctor.

"Oh, don't tell me you've hopped on the SFDebris Janeway-the-crazy-dictator bandwagon, too!? "

LOL, you and I we've had other discussions about Janeway... you know I'm not a fan. I've long said that there was more than 1 Janeway that popped up based on what the writers wanted and that they are not reconcilable with each other. But mostly it was a crack.

Honestly though? The Janeway that demotes Paris for trying to save the ocean is not the same Janeway from S2 that put Chakotay on report for stealing a shuttle. The one that formally reprimands Harry Kim for having sex is not the same Janeway that went easy on Neelix in Fair Trade. I liked Janeway the scientist, I liked Janeway the matriarch of this family. I just really, really don't like the dictator one. And that one pops up a lot in later seasons. Every single time Chakotay and Janeway butt heads I always think Chakotay is right and the episode ALWAYS sides with Janeway.

I feel like it started in S4 largely, but the real turning point is S5. The woman that came back after locking herself up in Night was NOT the captain I used to like. She was an impostor. I really like early VOY, but the second half of the series was a retread (most of the characters learn the same lessons they should have already been through in S1-S3) with a harsher captain.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 1:13pm (UTC -5)
I will also say I'm not aware of the SFDebris thing and that I place no fault on Kate Mulgrew, whom I like quite a lot.
William B
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 2:11pm (UTC -5)
@Robert, Elliott:

Not going to comment on Janeway because it's been too long, and I know DS9 from memory better. I might change my mind after rewatching DS9 -- which I hope to do after finishing TOS, though it'll partly depend on whether my girlfriend with whom I'm doing these rewatches is burned out on Trek by then (...TOS season three could conceivably do that to a person). I suspect, though, that I part ways with Elliott on the overall success of Kira as a character and Nana Visitor's performance. I'm willing to believe that Visitor has some significant growing pains in the role in the early years, and I think there are some weaknesses in the writing for the character, but overall I think Kira is probably the second-best regular character of DS9 in terms of overall achievement, emotional impact meets complexity meets overall storyarc, with Odo coming in first. (Garak is probably first if we include the nonregulars.) I really agree with Robert that Kira's overall story in terms of coming to terms with the Occupation is exceptional -- well, again, at least from memory -- and that the story keeps challenging Kira's initial and really basically understandable black-and-white view of the Occupation into something more nuanced, without ever taking away Kira's genuine righteous belief that the fundamental problem of the Occupation was that the *Cardassians shouldn't have been there*. The way Kira keeps confronting evidence that her Bajoran heroes were not as pristine, or *couldn't* avoid any potential traps, as she discovers of Opaka in "The Collaborator," or of Odo (whom she viewed as truly neutral) in "Things Past" and then, in fact, in the present as well; the way she has to confront the messy reality of Bajoran/Cardassian closeness via Ziyal and her mother (though I have big problems with "Wrongs Darker Than Death or Night," but moving on); the way she finds herself briefly on the other side of the Collaborator/rebel line in early season six. Her varied and fascinating relationships that develop with Cardassians Marritza, Ghemour, Damar and especially especially Dukat, are all great, perhaps with some flaws but with a great forward momentum, of Kira learning to find room for forgiveness and nuance now that the war is over and Bajoran future is secured. Kira leading the Cardassian resistance, and doing so willingly, is a great ending for the character, all the more so because it's *earned*. The way her relationship (whether platonic or romantic at any given moment) with Odo develops over the series, while sometimes fraught with major mistakes (I am not happy about "His Way," e.g.), leads again and again to many of the series' best moments, all often interacting with ideas of justice and redemption in which Kira and Odo both in some ways learn from the other.

But. I think the point Elliott was making -- and I'm sure he can make it better than I -- is that Kira's "credulity" is her faith in the Prophets, not just existing (which, after "Emissary," is no longer a matter of faith, since everyone agrees they exist), but in their divinity and, more importantly, total moral authority. Along with that is her faith that Sisko is some sort of messiah, when it comes up. And there I think the series did let the character down. For all the complexity, growth, and believable backsliding the show did with Kira in terms of her relationship to Cardassians and Occupying forces generally, I think there really is very little effort to hold Kira's unquestioning faith in the Prophets to the fire. An episode like "Reckoning" sort of suggests that Kira's faith that the Prophets will win against the Pah-Wraiths may be false -- but there, the question is of whether faith *in the triumph of good over evil* is misplaced, not in whether her faith that the Prophets are the good guys is misplaced. "Accession" and "Covenant" suggest avenues to poke holes in Kira's faith -- the blindness with which the Bajorans accept Akorem in the former episode, and the question of what, *if anything*, separates Kira's faith in the Prophets and Sisko from Dukat's cult's belief in the Pah-Wraiths and him, looms over "Covenant" and is pointed out in dialogue. Both episodes end up leaving things unresolved, in the former case by having the Prophets just decide that no Sisko is the real Emissary and Sisko doesn't make unreasonable demands, problem solved!, and in "Covenant" we learn that the reason religious worship of the Pah-Wraiths is wrong is because the Pah-Wraith "emissary" is a literally insane murderous dictator. I actually mind this a tiny bit less in the case of "Accession," because, well, it's still mid-series and there were still a few seasons left to revisit these themes, but in "Covenant," which also closes out the Kira/Dukat arc in a sadly frustrating and unsatisfying way, it's pretty hard to take. Similarly, the Vorta's devotion to the Prophets, literally *programmed* into them, is sort of compared to Bajoran worship of the Prophets who are superpowerful, but the way the series deals with that is frustrating, too: Weyoun points out that the Bajoran belief is silly but HIS belief is sensible "because the Founders ARE Gods." Which, in a sense, is basically the same argument that Kira, and the show itself, uses -- the Vorta's devotion to the Founders is a problem not because they've been programmed to worship without any free will, but because the Founders aren't *really* gods, unlike, one presumes, the Prophets.

I guess while I'm talking about problems with Kira, I do think that the series eventually losing interest in Bajor except to tell its religious stories does do a disservice to Kira, because eventually Kira stops having any interesting relationships with other Bajorans; by the end she's mostly only interacting with Odo, and Damar on Cardassia. The Kira/Winn dynamic carries through to one of the final arc, and that's sort of interesting -- I like that Kira is genuinely forgiving to Winn, on the condition that Winn actually takes steps to admit that she's been wrong before, and that shows some progress, I think, in terms of Kira's ability to forgive members of her own people for their sins. But besides that...scene, there's very little sense of Kira's relationship to other Bajorans in the final season, or indeed really after Ziyal's death, except for brief sci-fi diversions of questionable quality ("Resurrection," "Wrongs Darker..."). Her initial role as a representation of her planet and her planet's struggles sort of falls by the wayside as her planet's role in the series mostly disappears. And Kira is not even included as an important member in the dominant remaining Bajor plot, the religious stuff.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 2:29pm (UTC -5)
I totally agree with all the stuff you said in the top paragraph, couldn't have said it better, and probably agree right down to the Garak, Odo, Kira order of developed characters. I'll slightly disagree with the untested faith thing though. From her perspective...

1. There are gods that can heal the injured, alter minds, allow instant travel across great distances, time travel and make fleets disappear. And they are outside the window she looks every day.

2. They brought her the emissary and later VERY MUCH proved he was the emissary.

3. The emissary kept her old oppressors at bay and new ones as well.

4. The prophets deleted a fleet of ships that was threatening her world.

5. Heck, she even sometimes felt personal victories under the eye of the prophets

O'BRIEN: I might still be able to give you one more phaser blast, Major.
KIRA: No. Signal the lead Cardassian ship that we will proceed with
DAX: Major, I'm reading a huge neutrino disturbance fifteen kilometres off the forward docking ring. It's the wormhole.
KIRA: On screen.
::wormhole whooshes opens::
KIRA: Hail the lead ship. What did I tell you, Jasad? There's your wormhole!

b. ODO: Do we stand down, Colonel?
CREWMAN: Sir, we're getting a transmission from Deep Space Nine. The wormhole. It's back!
KIRA: On screen.
ODO: Nerys?
:: wormhole whooshes opens ::
KIRA: Open a channel to all Bajoran ships. Hold your position and prepare to fire on my command. Lock targets.

So they sent her the Sisko, anytime the wormhole opens when she's about to admit defeat it gives her a burst of faith and she wins, the prophets save Bajor multiple times... telling Sisko about the locusts and Bajor not joining the Federation, deleting the Jem'Hadar fleet, etc. Her emissary finds the lost city from a vision... I mean... tell me, when do they let her down? I mean... maybe, just MAYBE it would have been interesting to give her a crisis of faith, but based on the events of the show she'd be an ABSOLUTE MORON to question her faith. It ALWAYS rewards her. If my God rewarded me in such overt ways I'd never be able to doubt for a second either!
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 3:30pm (UTC -5)
@Robert :

It's not a question of the Prophets "letting her down," it's a question, as William B. pointed out, of her faith in them as *gods* and their presumed moral authority. It is pretty clear that, at least after "Emissary" the Prophets have an agenda for Bajor and intend to use their power to see that agenda fulfilled. Usually, this takes the form of protecting her, as your examples point out. To bring up a relevant example, Picard had the power to achieve similar "victories" for the Mentakans as the Prophets had for Bajor. Now, I'm not suggesting that the Prophets should have the same moral code as humans, but the point is, from the Mentakan point of view, there could be every reason to worship Picard as a god. Had Picard not worked hard to dismiss this result, or like the Prophets, actively encouraged it, Picard would have been the Mentakan God. Extraordinary though the Wormhole Aliens may seem to us (as does Q) in their abilities, they do not fit the description of gods in any conventional sense--they are not like Greek or Hindu gods, embodying prepsychological impulses, nor are they really like the Abrahamic God in any of his interpretations (king, clock-maker, pantheistic Urbild); they are just powerful beings who have imposed themselves on this people.

We are made to believe that the Bajorans are too developed to be so easily duped into unquestioning faith by the extraordinary abilities of the Prophets. Advanced cultures which hold on to faith do so in a Lewisian apologist manner, holding the contradiction in its proper paradoxical context, accepting the separation between metaphysics and physics. Physical, phenomenal demonstrations of power are not necessary to real faith--in fact, they are anathema to it--demonstrable acts are what *scientists* look for to test theories, not on faith, but on proof.

The fact that Kira is constantly "rewarded" for her faith (as is Sisko, by the way--except for his one penance for disobeying them) paints her not as reasonable, but as repulsively shallow. She submits her free will and her moral compass to beings who will give her and her people treats and rewards in return. Perhaps it is reasonable in a Ferengi sort of way, but that's not what the show wants us to believe.

@ William B.

As usual, bang-up job with your analysis of the weaknesses in the writing of Kira apropos her faith.

I found the topic of her reconciliation with the Occupation to be significantly better than that of her faith, *but* there were some real shortcomings, I thought. What, after all, was the consequence of her experience in "Duet"? After a heart-wrenching, tear-strewn epiphany that a Cardassian biology and/or collaboration with the Occupation does *not* condemn one to guilt or death, she goes right back to assuming Cardassians are all "cold-blooded killers." And she keeps learning the same damned lesson (Cardassians, Necessary Evil, Crossover, The Collaborator, Second Skin, Indiscretion, Things Past, Ties of Blood and Water, WDtDoN) over and over. Only at the end, does it seem like she actually *develops* in this regard. I grant, that this was a very good way to close out the character, but it seems to me like she could have got to that point in season 2, not 7. I don't think Kira's development in this regard was terrible, but her attitudes often felt like retreads of familiar ground.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 3:39pm (UTC -5)
Worth mentioning in this is that your (Robert's) note about Janeway's turn after season 4 is exactly the kind of development I wanted in Kira--not precisely the same of course, their issues are different--but Janeway's experiences *changed* her outlook and her attitude over the course of the show, didn't they? Season 1 Janeway *should* not be Season 5 Janeway. I think the reason people have a problem with Janeway is that her personality (a different characteristic from her views) as well as the default power dynamic on Voyager (no admiralcy to check her decisions) meant that Janeway's character arc ended up pulling the crew along with her on the ride. Now, maybe this is unfair to the crew, but that's one of the consequences of being lost, isn't it?
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 4:02pm (UTC -5)
I see... your issue with Kira is that she should be advanced enough to see them as wormhole aliens. So allies at best, but certainly not gods.

I like your line about "The fact that Kira is constantly "rewarded" for her faith (as is Sisko, by the way--except for his one penance for disobeying them) paints her not as reasonable, but as repulsively shallow. She submits her free will and her moral compass to beings who will give her and her people treats and rewards in return. Perhaps it is reasonable in a Ferengi sort of way, but that's not what the show wants us to believe." in a way is that not what the Federation wants from Bajor? To give them some treats (like industrial replicators) in exchange for giving the Federation their moral compass and authority?

I see your point about Kira believing them to be divine. But I think that, in some ways your "treats" line overstates your case. In all 7 years of the show every action the prophets take seems to be for the benefit of Bajor. Why wouldn't you follow an all powerful being that has your best interest at heart. Much more interesting would be an exploration of DURING the occupation. There are gods, and they are real, and they are letting this happen to their people. How interesting would that be to explore? But from my perspective anyone who came out of the occupation with their faith in tact certainly would not have it shaken during the 7 years that Kira had (pretty good ones!)

So I don't find her faith in the idea that their path for Bajor is good to be problematic. I do personally find her faith in the idea that they are Gods to be of issue (is Q a god also? She didn't seem to think so when she met him....) The only point in the series though that it really becomes problematic is "In the Hands of the Prophets", where she sides against Keiko... feeling the children should be taught that the Wormhole aliens are gods. That episode would have been a good point to address issues like the Mintakans and The Picard. But the episode did not go there and I don't know that there was every really another good opportunity to. In my case I count that as the only strike against that episode (it's one of my favorites). I wish Kira had kept a more neutral position.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 4:14pm (UTC -5)
@Elliott - I do agree with you about Janeway, I just didn't feel that the tone of the show warranted the change in the direction it took.

Sisko and Bashir got darker as the show went on from war weariness. I mean, I GUESS you could say that Janeway felt the loss of each life, the pain of stranding her crew and that it slowly weighed on her... but I feel like the change wasn't organic. It just didn't feel like it flowed. They were all still out there, having a high old time exploring with their ship in pristine condition.

It's funny because the Janeway that ended up occurring would have matched the ST: VOY that Jammer's wanted the show to be. But the show VOY ended up being does not really support the heavy change in Janeway. At least not to this viewer.

And yes, having her be the captain pulled the crew along for a ride I wasn't interested in going on. We've talked a lot though in the past about how dark Janeway got, especially with the line about how exploring isn't worth it. For a show that decided to take the route not followed and be a second TNG instead of whatever TV show that Ransom ended up on :), I just think this was a bad choice for the captain. Her arc doesn't match her story.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 4:20pm (UTC -5)
"in a way is that not what the Federation wants from Bajor? To give them some treats (like industrial replicators) in exchange for giving the Federation their moral compass and authority?"

Mmmm, well, I'm sure that's what Eddington would say, but no I don't think so. The Federation defended Bajor and assisted in its recovery with no stipulations about Bajor having to change its identity. Now, of course it *hoped* that Bajor would join the Federation, but its help was not predicated on that hope. I got the impression (although it was not altogether clear) that this hope was connected to the fact the Federation's hands were tied during the Occupation by the Prime Directive, and Bajor's admittance would ensure that this wouldn't happen again).

Both your points about the Prophets' plan for Bajor and their standing idly by during the Occupation solidify the Bajorans' allegorisation of the Jews--enduring hardships in a process meant to lead to eventual salvation. Of course, that also shines a light on the masochistic nature of this type of branch of Abrahamic faith, assigning celestial "meaning" to horrible injustices in order fit them in with a benevolent divine plan [oh, yes it hurts when my husband beats me, but it's only because he needs me to learn a lesson so we can be happy later on]. In this respect, the best reading I can give to Kira (and by extension, all Bajorans) is that she is so traumatised by both the Occupation *and* the Prophets that there is little hope for her other than to consign her to wilful blindness: a tragic story indeed.
William B
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 4:27pm (UTC -5)
@Elliott, point about the repetition. I had thought of that before mounting that paragraph defense.

There's an interesting series of essays on DS9 here: I don't really agree with all her conclusions, to say the least, but it's at least food for thought (and I think that I owe her a debt in the Bajorans/Vorta point, which I should have credited more). Anyway, the Kira essay actually argues something similar -- that after season one Kira's development stalls and repeats for quite some time. Really, I do think that there is a progression -- her attitude toward Ghemour in s3, for instance, is much different than I think it would have been at the beginning of "Duet"; I think there is a process of moving from recognizing the pretty genuine innocence of noncombattants to recognizing the value of forgiveness of people who really did strike against Bajor but who have repented ("Ties of Blood and Water") and finally to helping Damar et al. who are *still* basically unrepentant, with their own problem.

I mean, I think concentrated storytelling could have worked to have brought Kira to that point with Damar in season two -- but really, Damar killed Ziyal a year before, not even during the Cardassian Occupation. Damar is basically unrepentant in his belief in Cardassian superiority, and indeed his very rebellion is partly based on the false premise of Cardassian superiority rather than on the premise that Cardassians don't deserve to be dominated because no peoples do. I do think that "When it Rains"/"Tacking" missed an important trick by understating how loathsome it must still be for Kira to work with Damar -- because I am not all that convinced before his own family gets killed that Damar would have any particular regrets about gunning Ziyal down, nor about the Occupation. They make the same mistake with Garak and Damar. At any rate, the dedication to someone she genuinely has every reason to hate because even he has a right to be free is much harder than finding it possible to love a deeply penitent, basically innocent man who is trying to self-sacrifice to convince Cardassians of their wrongdoing.

Good rundown on the problem with the religion aspect, yes.

I'm also glad Robert mentioned the other big thing -- the Occupation. It's one thing to have a noninterfering God or Gods (who may in fact be purely symbolic) fail to step in during a decades-long rape and pillage of a planet; it's quite another for Gods who are willing to interfere only if a particular offworlder who turns out to be their own child makes the case to them. Similarly for Sisko, actually; it mostly benefits Sisko to be the Emissary, but the fact that the Prophets apparently set him up from birth to be their Emissary by possessing and discarding his mother and apparently not interfering when the Borg and Dominion nearly destroyed the Federation is, you know, also questionable.
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 4:37pm (UTC -5)
@Robert ;

You didn't find episodes like Night, Extreme Risk, Timeless, Infinite Regress, Nothing Human, Counterpoint, Latent Image, Dark Frontier, Course: Oblivion, Juggernaut, Equinox, Dragon's Teeth, Memorial, Unimatrix Zero, Flesh and Blood, The Void, Workforce, Friendship One and Endgame to showcase darkness of tone?

The "pristine-ness"-of-the-ship complaint never held much water with me. I mean the thing was brand new in the pilot and got a major overhaul about 6 years later ("Nightingale"). The fact that they vacuumed the carpets and put flowers on Janeway's side table never struck me as odd for a people whose technology lets them create food out of thin air.

I think worth noting is that with few exceptions, in the later seasons, Janeway didn't partake in the "fun" nearly as much as the rest of the crew--she isolated herself (Counterpoint, 11:59, Fair Haven, then basically the whole stretch from Flesh and Blood to Endgame).
Fri, Sep 26, 2014, 6:15pm (UTC -5)
@William B.

Thanks for the link! I read through a couple of them--I can't say I agree with a lot of the conclusions so far, but I appreciated the depth of the analysis. I have read complaints similar to mine about Kira lobbed at Torres and 7of9, and don't agree with those either (well, mostly), so to be fair, I will remain open to the possibility that Kira actually does develop properly over the series during my re-watch reviews which I hope to start up again soon.
William B
Sun, Sep 28, 2014, 12:57pm (UTC -5)

I find Nussbaum's analyses interesting and frustrating in equal measure. She is way too harsh on BSG, among other things, for instance...though I actually see her point on a few particular instances.

As far as Kira, I think the Torres or Seven comparison is useful, because I do think there's a similar sense of...the same fundamental issues being returned to again and again, but there are subtle changes in the form those fundamental issues take. I think that's a good strategy for character development, and it's the basic structure we get with (e.g.) Data too, though Data starts off more explicitly admirable than the others.
Mon, Sep 29, 2014, 9:45am (UTC -5)
"You didn't find episodes like Night, Extreme Risk, Timeless, Infinite Regress, Nothing Human, Counterpoint, Latent Image, Dark Frontier, Course: Oblivion, Juggernaut, Equinox, Dragon's Teeth, Memorial, Unimatrix Zero, Flesh and Blood, The Void, Workforce, Friendship One and Endgame to showcase darkness of tone? "

Of course there were dark episodes, but I only rarely got the feeling Janeway was beaten down by the world the way the DS9 crew were supposed to be by the war. Things like Flesh and Blood, Dark Frontier, and The Void (all among my favorites) showcased an optimistic Janeway. Not the Janeway from Night, Equinox and Friendship One.

For me the "Janeway Problem" is a lot like DS9's "The Sound of Her Voice". A serviceable episode in a bubble... but Sisko's problems with Kassidy and Miles/Julian's isolation all seemed to be really brought up at random. And then never addressed again. I felt that way about Janeway. She went totally emo in Night, then it popped up again in Equinox and then again in Friendship One through the end of the series.

If she wasn't participating in the fun because she was beating herself up about stranding them and all the people that died under her command instead of that she was the captain (Picard skipped a lot of "the fun" too)... I just wish they had been more explicit. In a lot of ways her arc (and characterization) feels yo-yo like.

Again though, I'd like to point out that I'm not faulting Mulgrew. She sure as held sold every single one of those emotions in Equinox, even if I didn't care for the characterization.
Mon, Sep 29, 2014, 10:02am (UTC -5)
As for fundamental issues being returned too....

I pretty much disagree with Kira's character being re-hashed. We DID keep going back to basics with her, but I feel like each time she was different and she learned something NEW from it.

One thing I DID like about Kira working with Damar was that for her, I didn't feel like she was out to reform him (at first). She'd have to TRULY hate him to say what she did after his family was killed. And she didn't even do it for a good reason, it was Garak that pointed out to her that it might do some good... she had just shot her mouth off. Her hostility was right beneath the surface.

It wasn't until the were all beaten, stripped away of everything, living in a basement with all their comrades killed that I think she finally saw what Damar COULD be. And THEN she thought about trying to shape him into it. I think she does some of her best acting of the entire show (and so does he) as their 2 characters subtlety change over 10 episodes.

But even little things about Kira change a lot over 7 years. The woman who felt stupid about wearing the costumes in "Way of the Warrior" still felt silly in a holosuite in "His Way" but much less so (and was playing along in S7 in "Take Me Out..." and "Badda Bing...") Her relationship with Sisko, Bashir, O'Brien, Dax they all subtlety change over 7 years. It's really nicely done when you look at it.

But Torres? She just never seems to learn from her uneasiness with her Klingon past. It just always seems to come back to bite her. She never totally makes peace with it.
Sat, Oct 10, 2015, 4:19pm (UTC -5)
Am I the only one who find it very implausible that they haven't perfected contraceptives to the degree that there would be no accidental pregnancies? Of course the other option would be that she knowingly stopped taking those contraceptives which has me wondering over her reaction to being pregnant...oh well.
Mon, Dec 28, 2015, 12:28am (UTC -5)
Eddie: Listen to the dialog, Sisko forgot to "get his injection." Clever, but stupid at the same time.

I really can't stand the direction the Dominion War went, for a variety of reasons, lazy writing being the one on display here. The notion that Admiral Ross and Captain Sisko are making policy for the Federation ("We vote to attack.") without even a phone call to Starfleet Command and/or the Federation Council?

Lazy, lazy, lazy writing. Evident all throughout the war arc. I loved many of the episodes ("In The Pale Moonlight" is my favorite episode of Trek, even as a TNG fan...) the war brought us, and even some of the scenes here (on Cardassia) but on balance I think the war was a net minus for the Trek universe.

Mind you, not as stupid as the religious nonsense that sucked up so much of DS9's airtime towards the end...
Diamond Dave
Wed, Feb 24, 2016, 2:48pm (UTC -5)
There's two really good episodes here - but shunted together into one it really doesn't gel. On the plus side the Damar rebellion stuff is stirring indeed and leads to an exciting and rousing conclusion. On the negative, the Ferengi stuff sits poorly with events on Cardassia. It's not that it's bad - indeed, Quark railing against the new social revolution on Ferenginar is inspired - but tonally it's just all wrong. The Ferengi needed a resolution to the story, but perhaps this wasn't the place? Even as unlikely as Rom becoming Grand Nagus is, that Quark ends up in his spiritual home of the bar is an appropriate conclusion for this character at least.

Elsewhere Sisko learns he is to become a father - a nice human touch in all this chaos - and Ezri/Bashir finally get together. Um... no. 3 stars, purely for the Cardassia element.
Thu, Mar 17, 2016, 12:33pm (UTC -5)
I really can't believe no-one said it yet: the best moment in the episode is the cut from Combs as Brunt directly to Combs as Weyoun. It's as close as the two characters ever got to meeting each other, sadly.
William B
Wed, May 18, 2016, 10:32am (UTC -5)
Part 1: Ferengi plot

On a micro level, I like this story. As a conclusion to Quark and Rom's brotherhood, it's sweet. Put aside the mechanics of what happened to Ferenginar; what we are seeing is that somehow or another, Quark and Rom's society has changed from one in which Quark fits right in to one in which Rom fits right in. And while it's mostly just a short, cute little subplot rather than anything big, I think that's what works about it. See Robert's comments on "Bar Association" for how that episode also makes more sense if you read it as a Quark/Rom story than as a political one. Quark thinks he is going to be made the ruler, and is shocked when he finds out that the planet has suddenly started valuing compassion over greed, collective success over individual prosperity, and the like. They don't even teach kids the Rules of Acquisition anymore! And Rom gently points out the counterargument to each of Quark's objections between asking him about the bar. The important thing is not who is "right" of Quark or Rom about what a better way to run a society is, but that the changes are ones that Rom basically approves of and Quark opposes deeply. So the end reveal that Rom is now placed in a privileged position in this society makes some sense in terms of their bond. Rom finally gets to have his turn as the "successful" brother, because their culture's definition of success has changed, and Rom is better suited to this new Ferenginar than Quark is...but ultimately they are still brothers, and that's what matters. "You're an idiot. But I love you." Rom and Quark wish each other well as Quark tries to make his place the "last outpost" (cute reference) of the Ferenginar he loves, just as Rom has used the station to find an alternate way of being a Ferengi that made sense for him earlier in the series.

I think that the vast sweeping social reforms that happen on Ferenginar are mostly a joke, as in, I think tht this is a mostly comic subplot where the vast social changes' primary purpose is to highlight the comedy of Quark's situation. The tone of the plot is all comic, of course, but even aside from that there is no real set-up for this level of change. Yes, women's rights have been established in, ick, "Profit and Lace," but the idea that Ishka would become some sort of crusader for retirement funds and progressive taxation, for example, strikes me as dubious -- I tended to see her as a hardcore capitalist who happened to be female, whose political reforms would basically be about gender equality rather than the other set of social changes which are not actually synonymous with equal gender rights. Causes that are labeled "progressive" today are not actually all ideologically related to each other and so expecting Ferenginar to change all of a sudden in various ways which are loosely politically affiliated as of the late 90's betrays a certain (as Andy's Friend might say) ethnocentricity on the part of the writers. More to the point, unless there are very extreme pressures (like a revolution or a war) I don't believe societies change in a year. Of course Ferenginar is still basically capitalistic and the Nagus, an appointed position, is still extremely powerful, so it is possible that its core identity is not all that different -- in which case, of course, putting Rom in charge is an incredibly stupid move, given that Rom has no business sense. More generally it's a pretty dumb ending to Rom's story for him to be moved out of the technical areas where he's some sort of genius into a leadership position he is totally unprepared for -- it makes sense only if you really, REALLY zoom out and consider Rom's being made the Nagus primarily symbolic of just the fact that his and Quark's fortunes have shifted but they're still brothers and they love each other.
William B
Wed, May 18, 2016, 10:40am (UTC -5)
Another thing to note is that both the Ferengi plot here and the Section 31 plot in "Extreme Measures" basically trash the large-scale plot in order to make a sweet little story about how the central pair -- Quark & Rom, Bashir & O'Brien -- love each other. Even on the basis of execution alone, I think that the subplot in "The Dogs of War" works better for me, but more broadly a big part of why I'm more positive on the Ferengi plot in TDOW is that I (and the writers) mostly stopped taking Ferengi stories seriously a long while ago and so I don't really care that much that Ferengi society is completely and implausibly reworked just to give an odd little cap to Quark & Rom's relationship and to Quark's allowing his bar to be the seat of his value system, whereas the Section 31 stuff goes to the heart of the Federation and what it means which really affects the whole franchise, and so it bothers me more there.
Peter G.
Thu, May 26, 2016, 11:47am (UTC -5)
I never realized before how bad this episode is. It's out of place and...just kind of bad. And I'm not so quick to blame Brooks' direction, either, since I've liked some of his previous work, including the much-derided Fascination, which I rather enjoy.

To put my comment in context, I don't really agree with Jammer's reviews of the end-of-series arc in ascribing to the episodes ratings based on the content of each episode. Yes, that is how you do reviews, but I think there is a bit of a lack of perspective in terms of what the audience is really getting. If you go back and watch mediocre DS9 from Season 2, let's say, and compare it back to back with ANY of the episodes from Penumbra to Tacking into the Wind, I think the reaction would be something like "whoa, the latter are like feature film quality in comparison." It's kind of like if you go to the best restaurant in the city and sample some of their dishes you'll start to think about which you like better than others while forgetting than any of them is better than the best you'd get at another restaurant. For this reason I'd be content to basically assign 3.5-4 stars to all of the above closer episodes regardless of which of them were setup and which of them payoff. They all had excellent plotting, ideas, characterization, and were compelling. Even though, in particular, I think the direction was more powerful in The Changing Face of Evil compared with the others which would bump it up to a solid 4/4.

Extreme Measures was a change of pace so I won't count it, but The Dogs of War is supposedly a return to major plot arcs, even if that includes the Ferengi. To be honest I had completely forgotten this subplot existed, and I was not pleased to be reminded this time around. I actually found most of this episode to be...well, embarrassing if anything, and most especially so the Ezri/Julian scenes. I usually don't bother addressing what I liked or didn't like in an episode, these scenes were painful. I kind of want to blame Avery Brooks, but the script is really at fault. I watched most of this episode with my head in my hands, afraid of what would happen next, and that never happens to me in DS9. I feel no shame mildly enjoying Let He Who Is Without Sin, but only this one and Profit and Lace made me physically uncomfortable. I would been less disturbed if this episode appeared somewhere earlier in the series, but as the penultimate episode...ugh.

As others above mention, it's simply not logical for Rom to be Nagus no matter the larger moral character now being ascribed to Ferenginar. It's been firmly established that he's a genius when allowed to find his own path, and so it seems like doubling down on the mistakes of his past to bind him to a task that doesn't utilize his gifts. I could have understood if the Nagus position was reimagined as of some kind of moral leader, like the way Emperor Kahless is a figurehead on Kronos. *That* would have been a job perfect for Rom. But as a business Too pat.

But getting back to the real disappointment here, this is not the resolution we deserved to the individual tensions between Ezri and Julian. This is not the way to conclude a 7 year arc of Julian chasing Dax and her keeping his at bay, only to have the tables turned when she realizes she wants to go after him. Worf's expression saved the ass of the scene in OPS when they kiss, but their banter was otherwise telegraphed and sophomoric. I swear it was like watching a 1980's teen romance movie. When Julian says he normally isn't like this, he's right; he isn't. Then how about giving us a reason why he might be? For instance, how about showing him terrified that he might actually have a chance and could lose it? With Jadzia he had no fear because he knew if he ever won her it would be due to her and not any success or failure on his part. But here he could legitimately fail on his own terms, and Julian cannot stand losing. I wonder whether the Alamo "I just want to win once!" line isn't some dark allusion to the fact that he's adopted a defeatist attitude towards his own life, and playing out failure over and over in the holodeck doesn't ring true to him in some sense. But I digress; they gave no backbone to Julian's nervousness here when in fact that should have been the entire basis of the story. Similarly, why is Dax so scared? Has Ezri never been in a relationship before? Is it her guilt over how Jadzia treated Julian and worry that she'll hurt him again? Is it feeling inferior to Jadzia and wondering whether she's good enough for him? All of these would have been good questions to explore but instead she's basically just a silly teenager. If I could choose one element in all of DS9 to rewrite I swear it would be this subplot even above any of the Ferengi episodes.

I was also a bit sad that Garak couldn't find a way to subtly insult the Jem'hadar when they held him up, but I suppose he didn't want to be randomly shot.
William B
Thu, May 26, 2016, 2:09pm (UTC -5)
@Peter G., I enjoy this episode much more than "Let He Who Is Without Sin," but I agree that there is something off and disappointing about it. I mentioned that I like the Quark/Rom resolution on the very, very close personal level (and even there, mostly just that their last scene together gets the "you're an idiot but I love you" part right, if a little obviously), but it doesn't make any sense more broadly and feels unnecessary. And the Julian/Ezri resolution really *is* bad.

Another problem I have with this episode -- which may or may not be shared by others -- is that I think the Founder's decision to retreat to Cardassian space seems really forced in order to get us to the big battle next episode. She does it *right after* the Cardassian rebellion was apparently crushed. They still have the Breen, and even if they suspect the Breen weapon was a one-shot deal, don't they suddenly have all these new resources from an ally? This may be a matter of the Founder making bad decisions because she is under strain from the disease, but it makes the arc feel very jumpy to me -- the total, shocking victory in "Changing Face" gets reversed and suddenly the Dominion is retreating. While presumably they keep the Chin'toka system, there is a lot of tone whiplash from before. Some part of me almost wonders if actually, Gowron's offensive actually *did* get the Dominion jittery, which goes counter to the interpretation we are supposed to have but might be a nice irony.
William H
Thu, Jun 9, 2016, 7:38am (UTC -5)
I don't really like them getting a new Defiant so quickly. Particularly since we're long past the need to preserve the status quo.

Even if it needed to be a Defiant class ship for practical reasons, they shouldn't have re-used the name. Make it the Reliant or the Brilliant or something...
Peter G.
Thu, Jun 9, 2016, 10:49am (UTC -5)
From Memory Alpha on this episode:

"Some fans questioned the wisdom of destroying the USS Defiant in "The Changing Face of Evil" only to effectively bring it back a few episodes later. The reason for the destruction of the ship was simple; producers felt that something was needed to show the audience just how dangerous the Breen were, and it was agreed that nothing could convey this message quite as well as the destruction of the Defiant. As Behr says, "We wanted to kill the Defiant as a statement on how tough the Breen were. We thought that would rock the characters and the audience." The reason the ship was subsequently brought back was because it was felt that to have the final battle of the War without it seemed preposterous. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)"
Thu, Jun 9, 2016, 10:53am (UTC -5)
"The reason the ship was subsequently brought back was because it was felt that to have the final battle of the War without it seemed preposterous."

You can say that again!
Thu, Jun 9, 2016, 11:05am (UTC -5)
@William H

Apparently there were dozens of Defiant-class ships used in the Dominion War, according to Voyager Eps "Message in a Bottle" and "Endgame". Then, as you know, we also get to see one of the other Defiant-class ships, the Valiant.

I guess what makes it more believable is that the USS Sao Paulo doesn't have a cloaking device. So, as convenient as it was that Sisko got himself a Defiant-B, it was still not quite as good as the Defiant-A.
Fri, Jun 10, 2016, 9:49am (UTC -5)
"I guess what makes it more believable is that the USS Sao Paulo doesn't have a cloaking device."

I never noticed that!

Excellent point. I mean even if the Romulans are now allies they sure as hell aren't going to be handing out cloaking devices like candy.
dave johnson
Sun, Dec 4, 2016, 2:39pm (UTC -5)
What a lot of discussion here, amazing political debate, and so forth. HOWEVER,

let's get real..

The most important part of this episode is...

How the hell did Rom accumulate 5000 bars between getting married and buying the bar!!!! That is one story I want to know!
Mon, Dec 5, 2016, 8:32pm (UTC -5)
You can clearly hear Zek say Rom when he's talking to Quark, but then who cares? This episode didn't do anything for me. Seeing Bashir and Ezri court each other for ten minutes was a painful scene to watch. And having Leeta ask for a raise seemed oddly out of place. It's fun seeing Jeffrey Combs play both Brunt and Weyoun in the same episode. I've always liked that guy.
Paul Allen
Tue, Mar 21, 2017, 4:49pm (UTC -5)
Where are the Vulcans?
Mon, Aug 21, 2017, 2:15pm (UTC -5)
3 stars

Will wonders never cease? DS9 actually made the Ferengi storyline all these years go someplace and someplace interesting at that. I likes how the Ferengi arc closed out with the idea of Rom becoming Nagus--looking back it makes sense given what we saw of Rom. And it continued the practice of DS9 reflecting on the high profile Trek societies before going off the air I loved that Jeffrey Combs pulled double duty as Brunt and Weyoun. I'm glad we got to see the Ferengi players one last time.

The Dominion story was solid too. Enjoyed the way writers brought Mila back after all these years as a place for the resistance to hide out. Liked the Cardassian traitor that sold out Damar and the Jem'Hadar wiping the resistance out. That made sense there'd be a Cardassian willing to sell out his own people

I was surprised Sisko got another ship so soon and before the end of the series. Disappointed it wasn't a different class ship though -just for a change
Tue, Oct 24, 2017, 2:12pm (UTC -5)
The Ferengi story was stupid and has been done before. As a previous commenter mentioned, this is not the first time Quark thought he was going to be Negus. He's not qualified -- he hasn't even lived on his homeworld for years or decades. Also, wasn't he excommunicated? Rom is even less qualified. Neither of them have any working knowledge of politics or the players, and Rom is not capable of learning that in time to avoid a disaster. As usual, any time Ferengi culture or politics comes into play they end up being insulted as somehow simpler or stupider than other worlds.

I also did not think that this was a good ending to Quark's character arc. He is so much more multilayered than greedy capitalist. Before the show started he sold food cheaply to Bajorans because he felt sorry for them. He was a hero of the current war. I would love to have seen him accept himself in all his contradictions, not chop off half of his personality.

I liked a lot about the pregnancy scene. Sisko's knee jerk reaction "are you sure" and then back-pedaling was spot on. The fact that birth control was his responsibility and he blew it was a nice touch, although I like to think that in the future we will have more failproof birth control methods. Nevertheless, part of me was thinking this is like an episode of Roseanne -- his child will be the same age as his grandchildren. Yuck.

The thing about both Ferenginar and Risa -- where are they in this war? Why are they safe when the rest of the quadrant is plummeting into war, fear and destruction?
The Dreamer
Mon, Oct 30, 2017, 12:22am (UTC -5)
Just rewatched , very subtle but when Mila tells Damar that Tain was Garak’s father He just stands there stunned and stares at him

Nice minor moment
Thu, Jan 18, 2018, 3:30pm (UTC -5)
Lots of bases to cover in this 2nd last DS9 episode -- was it 3 or 4 or 5 subplots working in this one? Ezri/Bashir; the Ferengi; Garak/Kira/Damar; the Dominion strategy and coalition's response; Kasidy's pregnancy; Odo finding out Section 31/Federation wanted to genocide his race. Good thing the writers didn't try to cram in Kai Winn/Dukat. The jumping around is the downside to trying to set up the grand conclusion but it's all pretty interesting stuff after 7 years of episodes.

Pretty cool with Jeffrey Combs in the opening credits being introduced as both Brunt and Weyoun. I saw this thing on Youtube where he was hoping the 2 characters would perhaps find some way to cross each other on the promenade...

So Ferenginar has been taking a hard shift to the left -- how prescient this is for what the U.S./Western civilization is going through these days. Totally can understand Quark's right wing philosophies and how similar they are to Trump's -- never thought the Ferengi arc would actually amount to a sensible allegory. Quark is out of touch with society but he isn't wrong in disagreeing with all the changes in Ferenginar.

The Ezri/Bashir romantic comedy was well done and seemed realistically portrayed. I think the chemistry and awkwardness was how it should be between the 2 -- bit of lightearted stuff but maybe could have been left out as there was enough jumping around in the episode.

Kira/Damar/Garak starting a civilian revolution was also good -- starting in the cellar where Garak grew up. Not sure how the Dominion found out and destroyed all of the resistance cells -- fair question from Damar to Kira about that. He should question her tactics but she brushes it off and they focus on the next step. At this stage Damar needs all the help he can get and it's good that the character seems to realize that -- he has no animosity for Kira anymore clearly. This subplot was well written and acted. Again, it makes sense and is not going in some stupid direction.

3 stars for "The Dogs of War" -- the main story keeps moving in an intriguing way with Dominion retreating to set up their perimeter and the coalition deciding on an all-out assault. The Ferengi comedy arc isn't really a drawback here as it is amusing (but not stupid) and the allegory is perfect for these times. A really good penultimate episode. One more 2-parter to go for DS9!
Jeffrey G Key
Sun, Feb 4, 2018, 6:21pm (UTC -5)
Have to say Quark would be wearing a red "Make Ferenginar Great Again" cap in 2018.

Otherwise, great episode.
Fri, May 11, 2018, 7:58am (UTC -5)
Boring. 2 stars.

Thought we were done with the Ferengi episodes, then up pops Zek and Rom and Leeta in the opening credits. OK, finish up Quark's character arc now, so it's 1 less thing to deal with in the finale. But bleh, it took up too much time. Just as all the religious drivel with the Kai in previous episodes was a waste of space.

Never realized Coombs did both Weyoun and Brunt. Neat.

Bashir and Ezri? Why? Meh.
Tue, Jul 3, 2018, 4:56pm (UTC -5)
Ezri and Bashir: childish, predictable and stupid
Sisko's baby: hysterical, out of nowhere, stupid
Rom as nagus: not funny as hell, all done before, stupid
Odo: mildy interesting, too short, fuck Federation, stupid
Kira and Garak on Cardassia: good, bit predictable, ok

Overall: this episode is everywhere and so it's nowhere. The arc started full of promise, but is collapsing rapidly. Symptomatic for DS9 as a whole. It wants to do too much, loses it and drifts into space.

No stars.
Tue, Jul 3, 2018, 4:57pm (UTC -5)
Oh, and as almost always: #teamelliott
Thu, Oct 4, 2018, 2:38am (UTC -5)
Hello Everyone!

Heh, it took me three tries over two days to read over all the comments. I will admit my eyes started to glaze over (and my mouse wheel spun a bit faster) with all the comments about politics.

Okay, on to things I didn't see really covered or answered...

I think Rom probably got all of that latinum by talking to Moogie about what to invest in. I'd figure he probably talks to Mom on a regular basis.

I really had a problem with Quark being so out of touch with current events on Ferenginar. Doesn't he get the weekly newsletter? Doesn't he still have wait staff that are Fenengi? Wouldn't they know? And, as I already mentioned, I'd think Rom is in regular contact with Moogie. Perhaps Rom didn't tell him because he didn't want to upset him... but that is pretty thin. Quark would have to have been completely and utterly out of touch to not know what was going on there, and I don't think that is like him, based on previous episodes and scheming and contacts and whatnot...

Now I figure the Romulan who eventually votes "yes" to attack is probably given special powers to speak for the Praetor, but I think we should have seen him at some time. The Leader of the Federation? Naaah, we've seen him and he's best left to Earth. But the Romulan Leader would have been a nice touch, I think, in the same room with Chancellor Martok. Either hilarity or respect would ensue.

And I've thought for a while now that Sisko should have been promoted to Rear Admiral, or at least Commodore (we've not seen too many of those in ST). I think it would have been a natural progression. Too bad the Captain of the Flagship (and the ship itself) never shows up or is even mentioned, even once. I did wonder during the original run why no one ever talked about them. Even something as a line drop: the Enterprise led the successful re-taking of Betazed, or something... but I digress...

For some reason, I really liked the scenes where Damar is just lying on his back, in a basement, staring at the ceiling, believing he has completely failed. His turnaround seemed quite natural, once he was given different ideas to work with.

I really find it neat that what started out as a somewhat minor character, and flunky to Dukat, eventually turned out to be so much more. And it seemed like such a natural progression, at least to me. Many of the characters changed over the years, but at the end, I somewhat like his the most. As an aside, Dukat's seemed to be whatever the writers wanted him to be that year: bad guy, gray guy, bad guy, then finally incomprehensible mess.

Lastly, Sisko making certain Odo wasn't going to take matters into his own hands with the Founders, just sounded wrong to me. I don't know why, but it grated on my sensibilities. Perhaps it just sounded forced, to make a point. We all know Odo is going to do whatever the heck he wants to, and if it's saying what Sisko wants to hear, so be it. Perhaps it would have been best left unasked, but they wanted to make a dramatic point. I cannot explain my thought clearly, I fear, but I did cringe a bit when he asked it.

I think that is all for now. I hope Everyone is having a great day... RT
Tue, Oct 23, 2018, 3:31pm (UTC -5)
I enjoy every DS9 Ferengi episode apart from Profit And Loss, Profit And Lace, The Emperor's New Cloak and this one. Interesting how the Ferengi comedies peaked with The Magnificent Ferengi (plus the surprisingly ingenious, tongue-in-cheek meta magnificence of Who Mourns For Morn?) then lost steam/became complacent in the final season and a half of the show. And yet Quark was used so well in other S7 episodes like AR558.
Thu, Oct 25, 2018, 3:56pm (UTC -5)
On the topic of Garak's cliched "stilted" shouting of "for freedom!", I actually think it works perfectly, precisely because Garak is the least idealistic one on the team. If Damar had done it, it would be stilted, whereas if Kira had done it, we'd wonder how passionate she could be about Cardassian liberation. But Garak is dedicated to Cardassia in a more somber way. He's deliberately using a hokey line to rally the people, and it works the way he wanted it to.
Sat, Dec 15, 2018, 12:22am (UTC -5)
There is an interesting homage to Star Trek III at the beginning of this episode.

EZRI: "I didn't know we were getting another Defiant-class ship."
SISKO: "That's what happens when you miss staff meetings."

From Star Trek III

SCOTTY: [on sabotaging the Excelsior] "Here Doctor: souvenirs from one surgeon to another. I took them out of her main transwarp computer drive."
BONES: "Nice of you to tell me in advance."
KIRK: "That's what you get for missing staff meetings, Doctor."

The homage is a nice touch, albeit very forced. Bones was unfamiliar with the plan because he was busy dealing with having Spock's katra* inside of him. There is no reason (that is known to the audience) why Ezri would have missed briefings on the new ship, leaving us with no basis for Sisko to say this to her (other than that the writers really wanted to insert a TOS reference).

*for those complaining about mystical mumbo jumbo on DS9: remember the katra?
Gary V.
Wed, Jan 9, 2019, 10:07pm (UTC -5)
Funny how they associate socialism with virtue...
Thu, Jan 10, 2019, 9:50am (UTC -5)
@Gary V.

Right, like somehow allowing women to work *for money* suddenly leads to socialist paradise. It's best not to think about it too much.
Cody B
Tue, Feb 12, 2019, 8:02pm (UTC -5)
This was a great episode. I got a kick out of Quark’s political beliefs. Save the animals? “They wallow in dirt and live in trees. They’re disgusting”. Let’s be glad we don’t have to see an episode catching up with what the old Negus and Quark’s mon have been doing on Riza. I can just see them running around with that totem Picard had. Yuck
Cody B
Tue, Feb 12, 2019, 8:09pm (UTC -5)
Sounds like all Fenginar needs is a wall
Thu, Feb 21, 2019, 9:31pm (UTC -5)
Watching and commenting:

--Well, a quick, upgraded replacement for the Defiant. The Sao Paulo gets an immediatename change to the Defiant. Ben looks all comfy in the big chair.

--And Damar wants his old beautiful Cardassia back. But things go wrong. Kira calls the Cardassian in charge, on the ship, to get beamed back, out of a bad situation: "Seskal! Seskal! Seskal!" It sounds so much like she's saying "Sisko!" over and over and over. But Seskal's been blown sky high. No response.

--Ah! Housekeeper Mila to the rescue. And she puts the rebels to work cleaning her basement.

--How can Julian believe Section 31 isn't part of the Federation? I don't understand how he thinks they work.

--The Nagus is retiring. And he wants Quark to replace him? Will he have a quick name change to Zek?

--Ugh on the Ezri and Julian predictable and unconvincing and groan-worthy just-friends decision.

--Quark: "My greed has to be a shining light to everyone!!" Quark is worried about going soft. He wants his old, beautiful Ferenghinar back. He believes the Ferenghi is as diseased as the Dominion. He's drawing lines.

--The Dominion is retreating into Cardassian space to produce more troops and ships. They're drawing lines.

--Hokey FREEDOM, FREEDOM, FREEDOM!!! scene on Cardassia, but not as hokey as this elevator kiss scene with Ezri and Julian. Yeeee.

--Ah. So Rom is gonna be Nagus?? A kinder, gentler Nagus?

--The Federation and its allies make a decision to attack the Dominion now, before they can build up their ships. Sounds exciting.

--Kasidy is pregnant! Because Ben forgot his birth control injection last month. I guess in the 24th century, women will feel comfortable leaving it up to the man to remember.

A pretty disappointing outing for the next to last ep. Tying up some loose ends. Cleaning out the junk that's accumulated in the DS9 basement.

But I'm hoping for a nice payoff. Gonna wait to watch the finale. I see it's two parts and it's getting late. I want to be nice and alert for it.

Let's see what's left to sort out:

--The final battle that they just planned, the war in general . . . Damar, Cardassia.

--Odo, the disease, the cure, Odo and the Great Link vs Kira.

--Jake. We didn't see him at all in this ep. I assume we'll get some idea what direction he'll be taking in life.

--Sisko and Kasidy and the baby and The Prophets

--Dukat and Winn and the Pah Wraiths and Bajor

--The general future of DS9 and Worf, Kira, Nog, Morn, the O'Briens, Garak. I hope we see a bit of Vic, too.

That's a lot to cover! But I refuse to let these last two mediocre eps get me down. Looking forward to a rousing finale.
William B
Thu, Feb 21, 2019, 10:38pm (UTC -5)
@Springy, I really like how you tie together the Sao Paulo/Defiant quick fix with the various characters' attempts to hang onto what they are losing or have already lost. I guess the ep opens with the Sao Paulo which is a comforting ersatz Defiant, and ends with the announcement of an unplanned pregnancy, which is foreboding. Quark is looking to the past, Zek puts Rom in for the hopes of the future. Which characters are resurrecting the dead, and which are creating something new?

Quark with Ferenginar and Damar with Cardassia, but also it seems to be Julian with the Federation (unable to really make sense of what it means that the Federation as he understood it, the one that would not commit genocide, is maybe corrupted from the inside, like Quark sees Ferenginar). Oh well. Guess he can stop worrying now that he has his Dax-class girlfriend:

(Sisko comes up on the turbolift.)
SISKO: Anything yet?
O'BRIEN: She'll be here any minute. Running a little late.
SISKO: This is no way to start a relationship.
BASHIR: Hi, Ezri.


(Hey, Kasidy is also "running late.")


O'BRIEN: (re: Bashir/Ezri) It could still work. (Re Sao Paulo) She's here.


EZRI: I didn't know we were getting another Defiant class ship.
SISKO: That's what happens when you miss staff meetings.
O'BRIEN: Looks just like her.

Anyway where was I? Oh right, so uh, Julian definitely loves Ezri for Ezri, nothing to do with Jadzia. I guess.
Fri, Feb 22, 2019, 6:15am (UTC -5)
@William B

Ahh! I love it. Thank you! I hadn't thought to add Ezri/Bashir to the list of those looking to reclaim or replace things.

The O'Brien comments are great. Now you've got me thinking about how Dax is replacing Worf (after taking him out for a test drive). Or is she reclaiming Julian?

Given the title of the next ep, I do think this is a general ep about what changes and what doesn't change, and how we deal and move forward, and hang on and let go. (Past informs present, present informs future, but change is constant, and change is hard, change is bad, change is good, and change is inevitable.)

Though the title of this ep . . . I'd have to give that more thought. This isn't an ep where we let loose the Dogs of War. No time for anymore thinky thoughts right now, though.
William B
Fri, Feb 22, 2019, 9:20am (UTC -5)

A good point about whether Julian is a replacement for Worf. Hm....

In all seriousness I don't think we're really meant to take an entirely cynical view of Julian/Ezri, but I like the idea that maybe there was some wry acknowledgment on the part of the writers that this wasn't really something they convincingly established, given all the other things they (correctly) made a higher priority. Sort of like they are themselves giving something like Ross' "special dispensation" to allow the Sao Paulo to be a second Defiant - - yes, this is kind of silly, yes we haven't really had time to establish this properly, but you can go with it. I get the same sense from the rest of the ep, which (with the possible exception of the Damar thread and Odo scenes) feels like dealing with accumulated junk (as you said). The "must be all the static!" stuff with Zek is so silly that it seems to also be acknowledging that, no, making Rom the Nagus doesn't really make sense, just accept the idea behind it - - Ferenginar is moving in a kinder direction, Rom turns out to be a success - - move on.

I think maybe the title refers to the *decision* to let slip the dogs of war, to go all in, to fight the good fight and not wait any longer. Time to just take the plunge. Which we do see, with the Defiant, the attack plan, Julian/Ezri, Zek changing governments, Quark saying the line must be drawn here.... And Damar is trying to become a Mark Antony figure, exhorting Cardassians to revenge for what they've lost. The dogs of war aren't really fully out, but they've maybe been let slip.

I think the most interesting development is how important Damar is in these last eps, and I think Casey Biggs rises to the challenge (mostly - - he's better in more subdued scenes than when he's doing the FREEDOM! things, though that could partly be attributed to Damar's discomfort).
William B
Fri, Feb 22, 2019, 9:31am (UTC -5)
Oh right, there's something more about garbled messages, misunderstandings, deceptions - - Damar is betrayed over the comm, Zek can't tell Quark and Rom apart because of static, the Dominion and the Cardassians both misread the Damar situation (the former think he's dead, the latter think he's already rising up when he's in the basement), Julian and Ezri are unable to communicate verbally, Julian told Sisko to get his shot but he didn't follow through. You can't trust the comm, only what's in front of you; just saying something (that you're just friends, that Cardassia is now loyal to the Dominion again now that you've installed a new leader and have said that Damar is dead, that you can singlehandedly stop your world from progressing) doesn't make it so.
William B
Fri, Feb 22, 2019, 9:33am (UTC -5)
Looking forward to your take on the finale!
Peter G.
Fri, Feb 22, 2019, 2:56pm (UTC -5)
Examining the title alone, I guess we have to reference Julius Caesar, in which "let slip the dogs of war" is a mixed metaphor in which the "slips" (which hold the dogs at bay) are one element, the dogs themselves, sort of mindless and will go have their way the moment they're released with no rational thought, and then they themselves are sort of portmanteau'd into "dogs of war". So they're not just looking for food or scratchies but to unleash completely.

And taking Shakespeare's metaphor as *another* metaphor for DS9 here, I guess it would be something along the lines of what William B suggested: that on numerous fronts the characters had been holding back despite the final conclusion urging itself on to them. The only left would be to 'let slip' and have at it.

-We have Zek's slow transformation over a few seasons, from liking Quark and Rom, to then liking their (clothed) mother, to finally realizing she's more savvy than he is, and now this slow progression finally gives way and lets slip the final transformation of Zek's understanding for what Ferenginar needs.

-There's the Julian/Ezri 'romance', which never really was a romance and actually that's the point. They wanted each other from the word go and wouldn't deal with it or acknowledge it. There's the Trill laws for one thing, and even though they're not mentioned it's pretty much dangerous territory to take a crush from the past life and now pursue it since you have a clean slate from your marriage. But nevertheless they were holding themselves back using every stupid excuse, and as stupid as the excuses were they just didn't want to admit that there was no good reason behind it - in fact, even some potentially bad reasons behind it - but there it was. All that was needed was for it to let slip.

And we can say much the same about the buildup leading to finally attacking Cardassia outright; and to Ben & Kassidy finally consumating the relationship with something irrevocable. And even Cardassian needing a symbol more than a real man - all of these scenarios are about how the primal needs must have their way finally, and that for the moment it's not reason winning out but the beast within. And this doesn't have to be a bad thing. But whether it's love/lust, or the desire to go kick ass at Cardassia, or the Cardassian need for a rallying point, these are all subconscious and primal needs, and hence why the situations are referenced by 'dogs' of war: these aren't the thinking parts, but the moving parts that have needs of their own and want to be unleashed. (there, my own dog pun)
Thu, Jun 6, 2019, 10:11pm (UTC -5)
The structure of this episode bothered me quite a bit -- just too much going on. Just too many loose ends to try and set up or tie up in the penultimate episode. Did we really need the Bashir/Ezri nonsense? I think that could just be dealt with in the finale. Kasidy's pregnancy just pops up out of nowhere to remind of the uncertainty of Sisko going against the Prophets' wishes.

Of course one of the major subplots to sort out is Quark wanting to Make Ferenginar Great Again but even if it is prophetic for back then, it is obviously greatly exaggerated. As a Ferengi plot with all the dumb characters (Rom, Leeta, Zek, Ishka, etc.) it is one of the better Ferengi ones -- 2* stuff on its own merit. But man, does DS9 ever try to make capitalism look bad.

One scene kind of fell flat in Mila's basement -- when Kira urges Damar/Garak to keep up the fight, the 2 Cardies just sit there glum. And while I did think the scene where they blow up the Jem'Hadar barracks is critical for assuring the Cardies that Damar is alive and well, it felt somewhat artificial being on a soundstage as opposed to an on-location shoot.

2.5 stars for "The Dogs of War" -- was a bit too generous for my own liking in my initial analysis. As part of the 10-part finale arc, it's on the same level as "Penumbra" and a tad worse than "'Til Death Do Us Part". The amount of riveting moments were minimal here -- the opening with Damar/Kira/Garak getting stranded and their ship getting destroyed set up a lot of potential, but I do now feel the Quark sub-plot, while needing resolution, is a poor fit for this episode.
Fri, Mar 13, 2020, 8:51pm (UTC -5)
"Screw the economy, we're retiring far away!"
Space Boomers.
Jamie Mann
Sun, Mar 29, 2020, 11:35am (UTC -5)
And so, the finish line is almost in sight. Just a last few threads to tie up...

As if by magic, the USS Defiant - sorry, Sao Paulo - pops back up, thereby completely undoing any of the emotional impact of it being destroyed a few episodes earlier. I would have been happier to see the story bringing in a MKII Defiant or similar, rather than just plunking the crew back into the same CGI model and pulling a South Park Kenny maneouvre.

Meanwhile, the last tattered remnants of the Cardassian resistance find themselves skulking about on Cardassia Prime after an unexpected betrayal wipes out all their cells across 18 planets. So much for Kira's training - though handily, she's one of the survivors when they beam down just out of eyeshot of the Jem Hadar who have just wiped out the Cardassian Prime cell.

Odd, how often these convenient events occur.

Still, it gives our gallant survivors a chance to perform a bit of espionage in the best tradition of the WW2 French Resistance - and then to do a bit of public grandstanding to help bring a new resistance out of the ashes of the old one.

However, the Cardassian plot isn't really the main aspect of this episode - it's just there to move Kira, Damar and Garak into position for the Grande Finale.

Instead, the main point of this episode is to tie things up for Quark. Which means we get one last lump of Ferengi nonsense, as a "convenient" transmission glitch leaves Quark believing he's about to be promoted to Grand Nagus.

In yet another plot contrivance, Quark has somehow failed to hear about any of the major social and political changes sweeping over Ferengi culture. And naturally, Quark has misinterpreted the garbled message; it's his brother who's going to become the Grand Nagus.

All these contrivances pile atop each other until Quark declares that enough is enough, and decrees that his bar will remain as a last "true" bastion of traditional Ferengi culture.

For all that this is entertaining (for a fairly low value of entertainment), it's a bit of a shame that it's all so badly contrived. This final series of DS9 has seen major social and political revolutions in several Star Trek polities - the Klingons, the Cardassians, even the Federation and Dominion to a lesser degree. It would perhaps have been nice to give the Ferengi a more sophisticated send-off, instead of bringing on the usual guest actors to perform a comedy skit.

There's one more plot point, in that Odo finally discovers that Section 31 was responsible for the plague, and that the Federation has decided to keep this secret.

Truth be told, I think the episode should have spent more time on this, and the ramifications thereof. After all, it's one thing to withhold a cure until a peace treaty can be formed; it's another to keep it completely secret.

After all, the only real reason for the Federation to keep it secret is the political ramifications. Offering it to the founders - even if only as part of a treaty - would be to admit to the galaxy that Section 31 exists, and that they're willing to perform illegal actions to prop up the Federation.

(Leaving aside the fact that the idea that S31 could have remained secret is ludicrous, given their tendancy to kidnap people and then release them without mind wipes, free to lodge queries and raise Section 31's profile...)

Sadly, all we get is Angry Odo relucantly accepting the Federation's decision.

And so, on we go, to the Grande Finale!
Tue, May 5, 2020, 5:51pm (UTC -5)
If Odo were to link with another changing, wouldn't they find out about section 31?
Jar Jar Binks
Sat, Jun 27, 2020, 9:20am (UTC -5)
This sh*t sucked.
Wed, Sep 9, 2020, 6:51pm (UTC -5)
I don't think the Ferengi are funny at all. Quark is just a criminal and while well played, is despicable. A fitting end to his story would be him getting tossed out of an airlock by his employees.

I really was looking forward to these last episodes, but the 31 episode was shit and aside from the Damar scenes, this episode was depressing and pointless.
Neil Mack
Tue, Jan 26, 2021, 5:09pm (UTC -5)
I was very disappointed with this episode and expected a scathing review from Jammer.

My problem with it was the Quark story was boring and unfunny plus, like the last episode, the non-war stuff felt like filler ahead of the big crescendo. I was impatiently waiting for the Quark scenes to end. There was not enough peril for the trio down on Cardassia and the uprising catalyst fell flat - a mixture of poor acting by extras and direction.

They wasted a couple of episodes earlier where Quark's arc could complete. And where are Winn and Dukat?
Sat, Sep 11, 2021, 11:18am (UTC -5)
I guess humour truly is subjective, because I found myself more confused as to where this was going than anything regarding Quarks monologue; it was obviously too ridiculous to be taken seriously, but it seemed too serious to be taken as a joke either.

More broadly, this episode didn’t really do much for me; it set up some things, resolved others, but overall contained nothing of real note; the only part that came close was the predicament Kira, Damar and Garak found themselves in, but even then, there’s little to justify it’s existence (the idea of sparking a revolution could’ve happened regardless of whether the resistance movement was around or not).
As the penultimate episode, there really should be a feeling that all the threads are converging for one final conflict, but if I didn’t know better I’d guess that was still a few episodes away (and unlike TNG the writers didn’t have to contend with the show getting cancelled and having to deliver a finale while leaving things open for the replacement films) given how ‘everyday’ the tone seems to be. Sure, there’s mention of an assault on Dominion forces, but who knows how long that could take? Same with the Cardassian revolution: it’s started, but there’s nothing to indicate it’ll turn the tide, or how long it’ll take. Overall, it feels like we’re just now starting to set groundwork for the final battle, but at this point we should be on the verge of it playing out.

Still, the fact that the final episode is double-length likely means the first half will do what this episode was supposed to do, so maybe calling this the penultimate episode is the error. And at the very least it wrapped up the Ferengi ‘arc’, as well as Ezri’s romance woes (both of which I’m glad are gone) so there’s something.
Sean J Hagins
Sun, Nov 28, 2021, 6:36pm (UTC -5)
I have to say that the way many of you feel about Ezri, is how I feel about Kassidy. I never really liked her, and a married captain just feels wrong to me
Thu, Feb 3, 2022, 11:22am (UTC -5)
I don't know why so many people dislike Quark, he was by far one of the best characters on this show, if not the best. I thought Ezri was a good character too, she just didn't get enough time to develop. Imagine if all we ever had from TNG was season 1 Worf.

Damar really turned out to be a great character also. I just wish we got to see more of Cardassia. I wonder how many times in the series they reused that stock footage of the two Cardassians outside watching the viewscreen?

Aside from Kira I've disliked pretty much every Bajoran on this show though, they all seemed so backwards and dumb and I really hate all the religious prophets nonsense.
Thu, Feb 3, 2022, 4:57pm (UTC -5)
I don't know how Jammer rated this episode higher than the last one. He must have smoked one helluva doobie to come to that conclusion. Pass the Dutchie on the left hand side. Share and share alike, Jammer. Share and share alike.

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