Back when DS9 and Voyager were on the air simultaneously, I remember reading an article in TV Guide which postulated that, in the future, Deep Space Nine would be remembered as the best of the (then) four Star Trek television series. The writer made a compelling argument for his case. I don’t remember his specific reasons, but I can tell you this: I have seen every episode of DS9 once, and once only… with two exceptions: I have seen “Blood Oath” (with the three TOS Klingons) and “Trials & Tribble-ations” multiple times each. Because I am less familiar with DS9 than I am TNG, I will probably spend a bit more time summarizing the episodes than I did with TNG, starting with…

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THE PASSENGER:

A dying criminal projects his consciousness into Dr. Bashir. The problem with this episode is that the mystery is too easy for the viewer to solve. The cast should have figured it out much sooner than they did.

MOVE ALONG HOME:

A new species from the Gamma Quadrant visits the station for the first time. They like to play games, but when Quark tries to cheat them, things take a turn for the worse. The Alien puts Sisko, Dax, Bashir and Kira inside a virtual reality gameworld. In the bar, Quark moves them into a given situation, but they have to solve the problems and survive by their own wits. In the end it is revealed that they were never in any real danger: it was only a game.

PAIR WITH: “The Celestial Toymaker”

THE NAGUS:

The Grand Nagus of the Ferengi arrives on the station, ostensibly to oversee the development of relations with the Gamma Quadrant. He announces his retirement naming Quark (!) as his successor, the promptly dies. Hijinks ensue. The whole thing turns out to be a test by Grand Nagus Zek to determine if his son is ready to succeed him. (He is not.) Zek decides to exploit the business opportunities of the Gamma Quadrant himself and the status quo is returned to normal.

I think this might be the first mention of the 285 Ferengi “Rules of Acquisition.” (Google it to see which ones have been revealed.) The first time I saw this episode, the Grand Nagus reminded me of the grandpa from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but this time I immediately recognized the voice of Wallace Shawn, who plays Dr. Sturgis on Young Sheldon. I never look at Dr. Sturgis the same way again!

I always think of Wallace Shawn in The Princess Bride.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

THE NAGUS:

The Grand Nagus of the Ferengi arrives on the station, ostensibly to oversee the development of relations with the Gamma Quadrant. He announces his retirement naming Quark (!) as his successor, the promptly dies. Hijinks ensue. The whole thing turns out to be a test by Grand Nagus Zek to determine if his son is ready to succeed him. (He is not.) Zek decides to exploit the business opportunities of the Gamma Quadrant himself and the status quo is returned to normal.

I think this might be the first mention of the 285 Ferengi “Rules of Acquisition.” (Google it to see which ones have been revealed.) The first time I saw this episode, the Grand Nagus reminded me of the grandpa from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but this time I immediately recognized the voice of Wallace Shawn, who plays Dr. Sturgis on Young Sheldon. I never look at Dr. Sturgis the same way again!

VORTEX: A con man/criminal from the Gamma Quadrant arrives on the station with information about Odo’s past, or at least his species. It’s an import “Odo” episode in terms of character development, but otherwise not too interesting. We learn that Odo’s race, called “Changlings,” is from the Gamma Quadrant and is persecuted there.

BATTLE LINES: The Bajoran spiritual leader Kai Opaka (from the pilot) pays a visit to the station and accompanies the crew through the wormhole on a routine mission. The runabout is shot down on a moon and Opaka is killed in the crash, but later mysteriously returns to life. The moon is a prison and the prisoners are continually returned to life due to microbes in the atmosphere. Cisco brokers a peace deal between the two warring factions and offers to relocate them, but Bashir discovers that anyone revived by the microbes is now bound to the planet. Opaka has already decided it is her destiny to stay; the rest return to the station.

THE STORYTELLER: A border dispute is being negotiated on the station. The leader of one of the factions is a teenage girl to whom Jake and Nog take a fancy. Meanwhile, Bashir and O’Brien go to the surface to treat a medical emergency. An “entity” (actually a manifestation of the villagers’ anger) can only be held at bay by a “storyteller.” The storyteller’s apprentice isn’t up to the job, and when the current storyteller is mortally wounded, he names O-Brien his successor. The whole thing turns out to be a ruse, however. Doubly so, not only because the old storyteller’s ploy was to instill confidence in his replacement, but also because the “entity” can be “defeated” only by the villagers’ unanimity in the first place.

This episode lays the foundation of friendship between Miles and Julian, but is otherwise unremarkable.

PROGRESS:

“A” PLOT: “Uncle Bill”

“B” PLOT: “For Want of a Boot”

Until I re-watched this episode, I remembered it only for the “A” plot, but now that I’ve seen it a second time, I realize I should have remembered it for the “B” plot.

[This “inside knowledge” review brought to you by Earth-J.]

IF WISHES WERE HORSES: Beings from the imaginations of the crew begin to manifest on the station: baseball player Buck Bokai, fairytale character Rumplestiltskin and a sex-kitten version of Dax (conjured by guess who) among others. The working theory is that the phenomena are caused by a possible sub-space rupture forming near the station. Such a rupture is discovered and threatens to destroy the station, but Sisko recognizes the rupture as yet another manifestation of the crew’s imaginations. The whole scenario was set up by an alien race in an attempt to understand the concept of imagination.

PAIR WITH: “Shore Leave”

THE FORSAKEN: the sation is hosting a group of diplomats and ambassadors, one of whom happens to be Lwaxana Troi, who takes an interest in Odo. Cut to the chase: the two of them get stuck in a turbolift and Odo needs to revert back to his liquid state. Lwaxana gets more character development here than on most of her appearances on ST:TNG combined, but a better title would have been “Stuck in an Elevator with Lwaxana Troi.”

DRAMATIS PERSONAE: Kira suspects a freighter of delivering weapons to the Cardassians, blah, blah, blah. A Klingon ship returning from the Gamma Quadrant explodes, the first officer surviving just long enough to shout “Victory!” After that, the crew divides into factions and begin a power struggle, Kira against Sisco. Odo and Bashir eventually discover that a telepathic something-or-other has caused the crew to re-enact some ancient power struggle. Or something.

I know I shouldn't pick on typos, and i apologize, but the way you spelled "Bashir" made me laugh out loud.

Jeff of Earth-J said:

DRAMATIS PERSONAE: Kira suspects a freighter of delivering weapons to the Cardassians, blah, blah, blah. A Klingon ship returning from the Gamma Quadrant explodes, the first officer surviving just long enough to shout “Victory!” After that, the crew divides into factions and begin a power struggle, Kira against Cisco. Odo and Bashit eventually discover that a telepathic something-or-other has caused the crew to re-enact some ancient power struggle. Or something.

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