[DS9] Lynch's Spoiler Review: "Shadows and Symbols"

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Timothy W. Lynch

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's
"Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead:

In brief: Still some annoying aspects, but with much more flair than
the season opener.

======
Written by: Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by: Allan Kroeker
Brief summary: Sisko's quest for the Prophets continues, while Worf
carries out a dangerous mission and Kira faces off against seeming
Romulan treachery.
======

Where "Image in the Sand" set up or continued a great many running
situations, "Shadows and Symbols" had the possibly unenviable task
of resolving them. Kira and the Romulans? Done. Worf's mission
to get Jadzia passage into Sto'Vo'Kor? Done. Sisko's mission to
find the Prophets? Done. Introducing Ezri Dax? Done, though
there's clearly a great deal left to see on that front. So, for the third
time in a row we have an episode with a lot to cover -- and for the
third time in a row, there's a sense of a little too much happening.
With "Shadows and Symbols", however, I think that feeling is
somewhat lessened; I'm not sure if it's that Ira Steven Behr and Hans
Beimler have gotten more comfortable with this multi-tasking
approach, that Allan Kroeker is well suited to directing it (he did, after
all, do "Call to Arms" at the end of season 5), or some other factor,
but this time most of what bugged me was individual issues rather
than an overall sense of the episode.

I imagine a fair bit of my good feeling, however, has to do with the
introduction of Ezri Dax (played by Nicole DeBoer). Simply put: I
like her. Lots. More properly, perhaps, I like the idea: we saw some
of Jadzia Dax's adjustment period early in DS9's history, particularly
that regarding Sisko, but only rarely did Dax really feel like someone
constantly in a state of change. (One of the bigger disappointments
there was "Facets" a few seasons ago; as different hosts were
swapped out, Jadzia's demeanor should have changed, but it never
looked that way.) Here, there can and should be a lot more: the very
idea of a new Trill having to re-evaluate anything and everything she
once knew is one that strikes me as very rich for stories. When you
add in that everyone around her will have to examine their own
emotions and preconceptions as well, so much the better. This Dax is
supposed to be uncertain, and that's fine -- along with that, though,
deBoer seems to be playing her as a very *young* sort of uncertain.
She's not quite an adolescent, but she's got the "okay, I'm here, now
what do I do with my life?" sort of attitude that most people reach
sometime not long after their college years. I like that, and so far I
think deBoer is pulling it off pretty adeptly. Chalk up one definite win
there.

(The big question, of course, is why she's being allowed to come to
the station at all, given the Trill taboos against reassociation. If that's
handled next week and handled well, then just about everything about
Ezri Dax goes solidly in the plus column.)

That leaves the three major conflicts of the show: Kira/Creetak,
Worf's mission, and Sisko's quest. All three had decided pluses and
minuses to them, so let's start from the top: Kira's dealings with the
Romulans.

On the plus side, the Kira/Romulan plot did manage to avoid the
standard "Romulans pull a sleazy stunt and get punished for it" trick,
at least mostly. I got the impression by the episode's end that Creetak
honestly believed she wasn't doing anything against Bajor's best
interests, but was unwilling to back down from a fight when her
integrity was called into question. That much I definitely like. More
importantly, this plot gave Nana Visitor some fairly meaty work, and
her command style was very much in evidence here (far more so than
her brief stint in "Tears of the Prophets"). Interestingly, she was
much more reminiscent of Jim Kirk here than any modern captain
we've seen who's actually *in* Starfleet: the bluffing, the
determination, the willingness to push things right to the edge and to
run on instinct ... all felt extremely right here. I also liked the further
look we got into her relationship with Odo here: rather than anything
hugely out of character a la "His Way", we really got something that
was essentially a deeper version of something that could've happened
when they were still "just friends". Odo's calm support in the face of
Kira's dangerous risks hearkened back to some of the best moments
in "The Reckoning" last year, as well as other times Odo's defended
Kira's wishes simply because he understands her best. On a character
level, then, I liked this plot a lot.

On a plot level, on the other hand, I'm not overly fond of "and then
they stopped and made up" endings, and that's virtually what we got.
If this little dust-up with Creetak was not intended to effect some sort
of change in the Fed/Klingon/Romulan/Bajoran alliance, I'm
wondering exactly what it *was* for. That can certainly change
depending on whether we see any more of Creetak (which I'd like),
but for now it seems a bit empty.

On to Worf, then. This was another one I'd say worked on the
character level ... at least most of it. Interestingly, though, the person
best characterized during the mission wasn't Worf, but Quark. Given
that everyone and his brother looks down on Quark (with the possible
exception of Quark's own brother), it's only natural that Quark has
grown a certain immunity to intimidation, at least from someone he's
reasonably certain won't actually kill him. As such, he was really the
perfect person to stand up to Worf and insist on a little recognition that
yes, Jadzia's other friends had a right to be on the mission too, and
that they cared about her. Bits of the execution here were a little
clunky, but overall I liked Worf's dressing down of Quark (and the
others by proxy), along with his subsequent apology: it felt like the
most depth we should really expect from Worf.

On the other hand, I really couldn't have cared much less about the
mission itself. Given its dual purpose -- to strike a blow against the
Dominion shipyards and to get Jadzia into Sto'Vo'Kor -- it was a
given that they'd succeed, and it struck me as an equal given that
they'd hit a snag en route. As a set piece, it was okay, and I liked the
final shot of the shipyards doing the big firework, but there's really
not much there to comment on beyond "it was okay."

Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that
wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here.

Anyway, that takes us to Sisko's quest for the Orb of the Emissary.
By far the most surprising thing about this was the use of Benny
Russell -- unfortunately, I was tipped off to that in advance, virtually
in its entirety, so some of the effect was undoubtedly lost. On the
whole, though, I was pretty pleased with seeing ol' Benny again. It
certainly didn't have the sheer emotional power of "Far Beyond the
Stars" for any number of reasons, and I'm also not sure what
conclusions, if any, we're supposed to draw from this about Sisko's
initial vision of Benny -- but I'm not entirely certain I care, either. As
a false vision to dissuade Sisko from his course, it works, and at
present that may be all that was needed.

What I did *not* like, however, was much of the remainder of this
plot. Granted, I'm glad that Lisa's prediction from "Image in the
Sand" turned out to be false, since I'd hate having to go to trial with
the defense of "but she *asked* me to kill her!" :-) On the other
hand, Lisa's idea at least had the benefit of actually using most or all
of the characters at hand, which "Shadows and Symbols" did not.
The logic problems in this particular subplot really got to me.

For starters, there was Prophet-Sarah's statement that "Costamochin"
no longer threatened the Prophets, thus suggesting that Costamochin,
the Pah wraith released in "The Reckoning", was also the Pah wraith
which inhabited Dukat. Given that Dukat found this wraith in an
ancient Bajoran artifact, I have a lot of difficulty believing that.
Granted, it provides a certain economy of amorphous evil energy-
beings, but it strikes me as closing the barn door a tad late: couldn't
we have established that back in "Tears of the Prophets"?

Second, there was the whole point about a Prophet sharing Sarah
Sisko's body in order to arrange Ben's birth. While I can't say I
didn't see it coming, I can say I didn't *want* to see it coming. While
the idea of arranging for the birth of a particular person is far from
new or trite (it's been put to good use by David Eddings in fantasy,
and if you want to talk centuries-old breeding programs I'd refer you
to the Bene Gesserit in _Dune_), the idea of it here simply doesn't
work for me. Why? Because the Prophets, as we've seen them over
the years, are simply not that calculating, or that *linear*. They don't
think ahead: the whole concept of "ahead" didn't even really exist for
them until they *met* Sisko for the first time back in "Emissary".
Unless they've been playing some deep game and playing dumb about
it for a long, long time, this is out of character for them -- and if they
*have* been playing dumb for this long with no real hints, it's
cheating the viewer. Either way, I don't like it. There may well be
some interesting things spiraling out of this revelation, but that's a
question for the future: as it is, I'm not enchanted with this at all.

Third -- well, is there anyone out there who sees a point to including
Ben's father on this little trip? I'm certainly not one of them; he had
little to say and even less to do except go on the Roger Corman
Memorial Film-Death March through the desert. (Actually, I didn't
think the walking sequences were that bad this time, but I couldn't
pass up a phrase like that once it came to mind. :-) ) I don't
particularly mind seeing Brock Peters, but I'm not big on the idea of
wasting his time either, and I feel that's what happened here.

Fourth, I get the impression that everything about the Prophets and the
wormhole is now back to normal. That's just way too fast a
resolution for me. The Bajorans *lost their gods* for a time, and it
apparently affected the entire tenor of the war as well. We only got
hints of what a Prophet-less life was like for the Bajorans, and those
hints are not enough. When the station fell into Dominion hands at the
end of season 5, it took six episodes for Sisko and company to
recover it, and even that seemed to be cheating a couple of stories of
their full potential. Restoring the Prophets this quickly seems to make
the entire exercise pointless -- beyond establishing Sisko's ancestry,
that is, which I hardly think is sufficient reason. Given the Prophets'
importance to Bajor, not seeing the impact of this storyline on Bajor is
absolutely unacceptable.

Despite all that, though, on balance "Shadows and Symbols" felt like
a net win. The cross-cutting between stories in the last couple of acts
really kept everything moving at a dizzying pace, and despite my
misgivings in spots I was definitely interested to see where things
wound up. Some moments of triumph, like the look on Kira's face
when she saw the wormhole restored, absolutely made the episode --
and the final scene, where Ezri Dax comes on board the station, most
assuredly whets my appetite for next week. I can't say I'm happy
with all of the choices that were made here, but the episode was
carried off with enough flair that I can forgive a fair bit of it.

Other points:

-- At one point, Prophet-Sarah refers to Sisko as "the Emissary" rather
than "the Sisko". I do believe that's a first. (I also think it's possibly
a mistake.)

-- Once again, we get a token scene with Weyoun and Damar -- and
once again, I'm left cold. I get the impression we're seeing
groundwork here for Damar's undoing (his love of kanar, his interest
in impressing women with his new rank, etc.), but there's got to be a
way to make it more interesting.

-- During the dialogue between Jake and Ezri, I had a thought: Ezri is
actually young enough both physically and in terms of overall attitude
that we might actually see a potential Ezri/Jake romance here. While
I'm usually sour on Trek romances, this one could be intensely
interesting, if only for its effect on Ben: when your father-figure is
now your potential daughter-in-law, it's just gotta do strange things to
your head. Just a thought.

-- I am very curious as to how the doctor in Sisko's vision of Benny
got his name, "Dr. Wyckoff." You see, Wyckoff is my middle name,
and it's not exactly a particularly common one. I don't think I like the
idea of being a Pah-wraith-induced hallucination, but I suppose one
takes the jobs one can get. :-)

-- A point I meant to bring up last time: given Quark's statement in the
bar, people already know Jadzia was killed by a Pah wraith, and if
they know that they have to know it was possessing Dukat. If so,
why isn't tracking down Dukat one of Worf's and Sisko's absolute
top priorities? With luck, we'll find out a bit more in "Afterimage",
but I'm not exactly enchanted with the way this aspect of Jadzia's
death has been handled.

I think that covers it; certainly, this is one of the longer reviews I've
written of an episode in a while. So, wrapping up:

Writing: Better on character than on plot; still iffy in areas, but crisp
and usually packing a lot of potential.
Directing: Beautifully paced.
Acting: No real standouts except for Nicole deBoer, and that's
probably due to the novelty. No problems either, however.

OVERALL: Let's call it a 7.5 bordering on 8; were it not for the
Sisko's-mother-as-Prophet thing, I'd be far happier.

NEXT WEEK:

Ezri Dax comes to terms with her past.

Tim Lynch (Harvard-Westlake School, Science Dept.)
tly...@alumni.caltech.edu <*>
"Ben, maybe my memories are playing tricks on me, but have you
gotten stranger?"
-- Ezri Dax
--
Copyright 1998, Timothy W. Lynch. All rights reserved, but feel free to ask...
This article is explicitly prohibited from being used in any off-net
compilation without due attribution and *express written consent of the
author*. Walnut Creek and other CD-ROM distributors, take note.

Jose Gonzalez

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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On 18 Oct 1998, Timothy W. Lynch wrote:


Ahh. I'm responding to one of Tim's reviews. Suddenly, I feel nostalgic.
(-:

> WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
> of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's
> "Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead:

> On a plot level, on the other hand, I'm not overly fond of "and then

> they stopped and made up" endings, and that's virtually what we got.
> If this little dust-up with Creetak was not intended to effect some sort
> of change in the Fed/Klingon/Romulan/Bajoran alliance, I'm
> wondering exactly what it *was* for.

Well, I took a guess about what it was *about* in my review. (Basically,
I think this one of those quintessential Bajoran stories.) What it was
*for* was more or less building some tension and allowing Kira to shine, I
would say. Worked quite well, I thought.

> Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
> the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
> with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
> blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
> surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
> Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
> soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that
> wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here.

I think this has more to do with the "lone ship journeys deep into enemy
territory, enters the 'heart' of a sun, and destroys huge shipyard."
Remember, the Dominion has on occasion been able to see through cloaks, so
there was an awful lot of danger inherent in the mission. While risking
destruction by skating on the sun's surface may not be as glamorous as
taking on 3 Jem 'Hadar ships, I tend to think Sto-vo-kor would find it
adequate.

> Anyway, that takes us to Sisko's quest for the Orb of the Emissary.
> By far the most surprising thing about this was the use of Benny
> Russell -- unfortunately, I was tipped off to that in advance, virtually
> in its entirety, so some of the effect was undoubtedly lost.

I was actually going to respond to your review of "Image in the Sand," but
I didn't want to risk giving away this plot point or the other major one,
so I passed. I was actually able to peg this by seeing "Casey Biggs as
Wykoff" in the press release, so I had a clue going in as well. Still hit
me hard when it happened.

> Second, there was the whole point about a Prophet sharing Sarah
> Sisko's body in order to arrange Ben's birth. While I can't say I
> didn't see it coming, I can say I didn't *want* to see it coming. While
> the idea of arranging for the birth of a particular person is far from
> new or trite (it's been put to good use by David Eddings in fantasy,
> and if you want to talk centuries-old breeding programs I'd refer you
> to the Bene Gesserit in _Dune_), the idea of it here simply doesn't
> work for me. Why? Because the Prophets, as we've seen them over
> the years, are simply not that calculating, or that *linear*. They don't
> think ahead: the whole concept of "ahead" didn't even really exist for
> them until they *met* Sisko for the first time back in "Emissary".

I think you've answered your own complaint here. No, the Prophets
*aren't* linear. That's exactly the point. Maybe they didn't meet Sisko
until "Emissary," but since they exist outside of time, for them, meeting
him six years ago may as well have been six millions years ago. Thinking
ahead for them is the same as thinking right now. Are you saying you
think it would be impossible for them to meet Sisko now, and yet conspire
to create his birth 50 or so years ago? For beings for which time is more
of a concept than a fact? And sending Sisko a rival Emissary to
kick-start his faith in them, sending him visions to help Bajor avoid
destruction, and sending him an involved vision of the 1950's to persuade
(manipulate?) him into staying on their course for him strikes me as
extremely calculating.

> Unless they've been playing some deep game and playing dumb about
> it for a long, long time, this is out of character for them -- and if they
> *have* been playing dumb for this long with no real hints, it's
> cheating the viewer.

I don't see it this way. What the writers have going for them here is the
Prophets' very first appearance. There, despite the fact that they exist
outside of time, they still had no idea (or recollection) of meeting
Sisko. We don't know exactly how much of the past and the future they're
aware of at any given moment, and I don't think we need to. It's almost
as if they know everything and nothing at the same time. While there may
indeed be a cause and effect decision-making process (and maturation)
going on for them, that doesn't mean the cause couldn't come after the
effect in terms of linear time, not for the Prophets. Ira Behr and
company are just utilizing that loophole Piller left for them, and I don't
have a problem with it. I think it adds a heck of a lot more to the
series than it takes away (if it even takes anything away.) I like it
even more than the revelation that Bashir was genetically enhanced. I
think it fits in with the entire series' history even better than that
did, despite the fact that (I would assume) neither was an original aspect
of the characters. I love it.


> Either way, I don't like it. There may well be some interesting
> things spiraling out of this revelation, but that's a question for the
> future: as it is, I'm not enchanted with this at all.

On the other hand, I'm enthralled. (: I think it adds to the "saga"
feeling DS9 has taken on, and I've no doubt it is going to pay off further
down the road.

> Third -- well, is there anyone out there who sees a point to including
> Ben's father on this little trip?

Again, I speculated in my review that we needed to see just how obsessed
Sisko was to complete his quest, blinded even to his father's safety. It
added a disturbing hue to the march through the desert.

> OVERALL: Let's call it a 7.5 bordering on 8;

That's what 7.75 is for. <grin>

> were it not for the
> Sisko's-mother-as-Prophet thing, I'd be far happier.

I wouldn't be surprised to see both of your ratings move up a bit come
your season wrap-up. They seem a bit low, even knowing your tastes, Tim.
I am quite surprised that you dislike the revelation of Sisko's origins so
much. I think you're missing out on a lot of the depth and resonance this
creates (not to mention the fun). Maybe this'll be another Weyoun
situation, and you'll come around eventually.

But since I don't want to turn blue, I won't hold my breath. (:


-
Jose Gonzalez

Plain and Simple Cronan

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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There's nothing quite like a Star Trek circle jerk to remind me why I stopped
taking reviews seriously so long ago...

P&SC
...especially mine

David Guarino

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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Very nice piece. There are two points I'd like to
comment on.

Timothy W. Lynch wrote in message <70bu4u$4...@gap.cco.caltech.edu>...


>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
>blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
>surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
>Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
>soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that
>wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here.

I think they were under the impression that once they destroyed
the shipyard. The enemy would be in hot pursuit.


>
>Fourth, I get the impression that everything about the Prophets and the
>wormhole is now back to normal. That's just way too fast a
>resolution for me. The Bajorans *lost their gods* for a time, and it
>apparently affected the entire tenor of the war as well. We only got
>hints of what a Prophet-less life was like for the Bajorans, and those
>hints are not enough. When the station fell into Dominion hands at the
>end of season 5, it took six episodes for Sisko and company to
>recover it, and even that seemed to be cheating a couple of stories of
>their full potential. Restoring the Prophets this quickly seems to make
>the entire exercise pointless -- beyond establishing Sisko's ancestry,
>that is, which I hardly think is sufficient reason. Given the Prophets'
>importance to Bajor, not seeing the impact of this storyline on Bajor is
>absolutely unacceptable.

I think with this being the last season it was hurried. So that they can
cover other ground.


David E. Sluss

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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[Wholesale snippage]

tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) wrote:
TWL>For starters, there was Prophet-Sarah's statement that
TWL>"Costamochin" no longer threatened the Prophets, thus suggesting
TWL>that Costamochin, the Pah wraith released in "The Reckoning", was
TWL>also the Pah wraith which inhabited Dukat. Given that Dukat
TWL>found this wraith in an ancient Bajoran artifact, I have a lot of
TWL>difficulty believing that.

"Sarah" said that _the_ Costamochin no longer threatened them, which
gave me the impression that "Costamochin" is the Prophets general name
for Pah Wraiths, rather than the name of a specific one. OTOH, the use
of the word in "The Retchening" did suggest it was an individual name,
and they do refer to Sisko as "The Sisko," so it's hard to know what
was intended.

TWL>-- At one point, Prophet-Sarah refers to Sisko as "the Emissary"
TWL>rather than "the Sisko". I do believe that's a first. (I also
TWL>think it's possibly a mistake.)

Yeah, I agree, that didn't sound right at all.
--
// David E. Sluss (The Cynic) \\ // "I'm impatient with \\
//_________ sluss%dhp.com _________\\//__ stupidity. My people have __\\
\\ Manager of The Cynics Corner: //\\ learned to live without it." //
\\ http://users.dhp.com/~sluss // \\ Klaatu //


Richard Izzo

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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> -- I am very curious as to how the doctor in Sisko's vision of Benny
> got his name, "Dr. Wyckoff." You see, Wyckoff is my middle name,
> and it's not exactly a particularly common one. I don't think I like the
> idea of being a Pah-wraith-induced hallucination, but I suppose one
> takes the jobs one can get. :-)

I don't know, Tim. First an Ensign Lynch is Borgified and practically
eviscerated by Captain Picard, and now you're a hallucination. I think
if the Prophets have something in store for you, you'd better duck
first. =-)

rich.

Robert A. Pelak

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Oct 18, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/18/98
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In article <362A2BB0...@teleport.com>, Richard Izzo
<sp...@teleport.com> wrote:

> > -- I am very curious as to how the doctor in Sisko's vision of Benny
> > got his name, "Dr. Wyckoff." You see, Wyckoff is my middle name,
> > and it's not exactly a particularly common one. I don't think I like the
> > idea of being a Pah-wraith-induced hallucination, but I suppose one
> > takes the jobs one can get. :-)
>

> I don't know, Tim. First an Ensign Lynch is Borgified and practically
> eviscerated by Captain Picard, and now you're a hallucination. I think
> if the Prophets have something in store for you, you'd better duck
> first. =-)
>
> rich.

It could be that another Cornellian has joined the Star Trek writing
staff since Naren Shankar's departure. Wyckoff would then be a familiar
name.

Robert

Laurinda Chamberlin

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Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
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tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) writes:

>WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
>of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's

>"Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead: [...]
>

>I imagine a fair bit of my good feeling, however, has to do with the
>introduction of Ezri Dax (played by Nicole DeBoer). Simply put: I

>like her. Lots. [...]

I keep trying to like her, and it keeps not happening.

>Interestingly, she was
>much more reminiscent of Jim Kirk here than any modern captain
>we've seen who's actually *in* Starfleet: the bluffing, the
>determination, the willingness to push things right to the edge and to
>run on instinct ... all felt extremely right here.

Interesting observation.

>I also liked the further
>look we got into her relationship with Odo here: rather than anything
>hugely out of character a la "His Way", we really got something that
>was essentially a deeper version of something that could've happened
>when they were still "just friends". Odo's calm support in the face of
>Kira's dangerous risks hearkened back to some of the best moments
>in "The Reckoning" last year, as well as other times Odo's defended
>Kira's wishes simply because he understands her best. On a character

>level, then, I liked this plot a lot. [...]

Definitely. They finally seemed like the mature couple that they should
have been all along if they were going to turn this relationship into
a romance. I hope this is a sign that the adolescent silliness and
general goopiness is a thing of the past. I refuse to believe, however,
that Kira would become a fan of Mike Hammer. :)

>overall I liked Worf's dressing down of Quark (and the
>others by proxy), along with his subsequent apology: it felt like the

>most depth we should really expect from Worf. [...]

Yikes! Is that damning with faint praise I hear?

>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
>blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
>surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
>Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
>soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that

>wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here. [...]

Actually, I've been troubled by the nagging question of who was on that
shipyard when it was destroyed. If it was a fully automated factory,
that's one thing, but if they just blew away several hundred Cardassian
civilian workers, is it still glorious?

>-- Once again, we get a token scene with Weyoun and Damar -- and
>once again, I'm left cold. I get the impression we're seeing
>groundwork here for Damar's undoing (his love of kanar, his interest
>in impressing women with his new rank, etc.), but there's got to be a
>way to make it more interesting.

The problem is, stoic Damar just isn't that interesting.

>-- During the dialogue between Jake and Ezri, I had a thought: Ezri is
>actually young enough both physically and in terms of overall attitude
>that we might actually see a potential Ezri/Jake romance here. While
>I'm usually sour on Trek romances, this one could be intensely
>interesting, if only for its effect on Ben: when your father-figure is
>now your potential daughter-in-law, it's just gotta do strange things to

>your head. Just a thought. [...]

I agree, but I'm very afraid they're going to pair up Ezri and Bashir, and
they're going to bring back Vic Fontaine to do it.

>-- A point I meant to bring up last time: given Quark's statement in the
>bar, people already know Jadzia was killed by a Pah wraith, and if
>they know that they have to know it was possessing Dukat. If so,
>why isn't tracking down Dukat one of Worf's and Sisko's absolute
>top priorities? With luck, we'll find out a bit more in "Afterimage",
>but I'm not exactly enchanted with the way this aspect of Jadzia's

>death has been handled. [...]

I can see that pure vengeance might not be Sisko's top priority, but I
don't see why Worf hasn't mentioned a desire to kill Dukat.

--
Laurinda She walked by herself, and
all places were alike to her.

Timothy W. Lynch

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to
pe...@nospam.trail.com (Robert A. Pelak) writes:
>In article <362A2BB0...@teleport.com>, Richard Izzo
><sp...@teleport.com> wrote:
[I wrote]

>> > -- I am very curious as to how the doctor in Sisko's vision of Benny
>> > got his name, "Dr. Wyckoff." You see, Wyckoff is my middle name,
>> > and it's not exactly a particularly common one. I don't think I like the
>> > idea of being a Pah-wraith-induced hallucination, but I suppose one
>> > takes the jobs one can get. :-)
>>

>> I don't know, Tim. First an Ensign Lynch is Borgified and practically
>> eviscerated by Captain Picard, and now you're a hallucination. I think
>> if the Prophets have something in store for you, you'd better duck
>> first. =-)

Oh, I've felt that for quite some time, believe me. Remember, I was
accused in this very group of being fictional once.

>It could be that another Cornellian has joined the Star Trek writing
>staff since Naren Shankar's departure. Wyckoff would then be a familiar
>name.

Hmm. That's a fair point (though is there a reference I'm missing
beyond the Wyckoff Ave. in Collegetown?) -- and in fact, given that
Ron Moore is both on staff and a Cornellian, it makes a lot of sense.
Thanks for the thought.

Tim Lynch

Timothy W. Lynch

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to
Jose Gonzalez <jo...@bcpl.net> writes:
>On 18 Oct 1998, Timothy W. Lynch wrote:

>> WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
>> of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's
>> "Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead:

>> On a plot level, on the other hand, I'm not overly fond of "and then
>> they stopped and made up" endings, and that's virtually what we got.
>> If this little dust-up with Creetak was not intended to effect some sort
>> of change in the Fed/Klingon/Romulan/Bajoran alliance, I'm
>> wondering exactly what it *was* for.

>Well, I took a guess about what it was *about* in my review. (Basically,
>I think this one of those quintessential Bajoran stories.)

So I noticed after I posted my review. I can more or less go along
with that.

>What it was
>*for* was more or less building some tension and allowing Kira to shine, I
>would say. Worked quite well, I thought.

For Kira? Absolutely. For tension? Well, yes *at the time* -- but I
think I'm getting more and more jaded when it comes to
crisis-of-the-moment set pieces. I'm getting harder and harder to
please without lasting repercussions, basically. :-)

>> Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>> the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>> with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
>> blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
>> surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
>> Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
>> soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that
>> wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here.

>I think this has more to do with the "lone ship journeys deep into enemy
>territory, enters the 'heart' of a sun, and destroys huge shipyard."

But is that a "battle" per se? I'm not sure it is by Klingon
standards.

>Remember, the Dominion has on occasion been able to see through cloaks, so
>there was an awful lot of danger inherent in the mission.

Fair enough.

>> Anyway, that takes us to Sisko's quest for the Orb of the Emissary.
>> By far the most surprising thing about this was the use of Benny
>> Russell -- unfortunately, I was tipped off to that in advance, virtually
>> in its entirety, so some of the effect was undoubtedly lost.

>I was actually going to respond to your review of "Image in the Sand," but
>I didn't want to risk giving away this plot point or the other major one,
>so I passed. I was actually able to peg this by seeing "Casey Biggs as
>Wykoff" in the press release, so I had a clue going in as well. Still hit
>me hard when it happened.

Not me so much, since I was rather heavily spoiled (right down to it
being a Pah-wraith vision: harrumph.) I used Lisa as a test subject,
though, since she *didn't* know in advance. I still liked it, to be
sure.

>> Second, there was the whole point about a Prophet sharing Sarah
>> Sisko's body in order to arrange Ben's birth. While I can't say I
>> didn't see it coming, I can say I didn't *want* to see it coming. While
>> the idea of arranging for the birth of a particular person is far from
>> new or trite (it's been put to good use by David Eddings in fantasy,
>> and if you want to talk centuries-old breeding programs I'd refer you
>> to the Bene Gesserit in _Dune_), the idea of it here simply doesn't
>> work for me. Why? Because the Prophets, as we've seen them over
>> the years, are simply not that calculating, or that *linear*. They don't
>> think ahead: the whole concept of "ahead" didn't even really exist for
>> them until they *met* Sisko for the first time back in "Emissary".

>I think you've answered your own complaint here. No, the Prophets
>*aren't* linear. That's exactly the point. Maybe they didn't meet Sisko
>until "Emissary," but since they exist outside of time, for them, meeting
>him six years ago may as well have been six millions years ago. Thinking
>ahead for them is the same as thinking right now. Are you saying you
>think it would be impossible for them to meet Sisko now, and yet conspire
>to create his birth 50 or so years ago?

Impossible? No, certainly not. Do I think it's a reach to just drop
that on the viewer without so much as a "scuse me, but..."? Yes.
Otherwise, one could just as easily place the Prophets at every focal
event in Trek history after the fact -- yes, it's theoretically
possible, but why *do* it?

The point you (and some others in e-mail) have made is an interesting
one, though, and one I'll definitely have to think about for a bit.
If we get more examination of this, particularly if Sisko starts
wondering about the logistics, I may be a good deal happier; as it is,
I really don't feel like it's solved much. (At the risk of starting a
firefight, I can contrast this with the revelation about Sinclair in
B5's "War Without End"; that felt downright *transcendent* to me,
managing to fit in damn near perfectly with what we knew and
explaining some unanswered qusetions in the bargain. I figure it's
the advantage of knowing where you're going in advance -- but that's
me thinking linearly again. :-) )

>> Unless they've been playing some deep game and playing dumb about
>> it for a long, long time, this is out of character for them -- and if they
>> *have* been playing dumb for this long with no real hints, it's
>> cheating the viewer.

>I don't see it this way. What the writers have going for them here is the
>Prophets' very first appearance. There, despite the fact that they exist
>outside of time, they still had no idea (or recollection) of meeting
>Sisko. We don't know exactly how much of the past and the future they're
>aware of at any given moment, and I don't think we need to. It's almost
>as if they know everything and nothing at the same time. While there may
>indeed be a cause and effect decision-making process (and maturation)
>going on for them, that doesn't mean the cause couldn't come after the
>effect in terms of linear time, not for the Prophets.

I think that's a very interesting supposition; I also think it's you
projecting the explanation you want. That's not to say it's a bad
explanation by any means, but I for one am just not seeing evidence
that Behr and company are thinking this deeply about the Prophets.
Remember, these are the same folks who used the Prophets as straight
men in "Prophet Motive" and who gave us the lovely "Profit and Lace"
as an example of fine quality entertainment. I like your thinking; I
just don't think it's the episode's thinking at this stage of the
game. (Boy, I *have* gotten cynical, haven't I?)

Let's just say I'm willing to be convinced, but I'm not yet.

>> Third -- well, is there anyone out there who sees a point to including
>> Ben's father on this little trip?

>Again, I speculated in my review that we needed to see just how obsessed
>Sisko was to complete his quest, blinded even to his father's safety. It
>added a disturbing hue to the march through the desert.

Ehhh. Jake would've been plenty, really.

>> OVERALL: Let's call it a 7.5 bordering on 8;

>That's what 7.75 is for. <grin>

Nope. I don't do the quarter-point thing; the error-bars are way to
big to justify any precision on that level. :-)

>> were it not for the
>> Sisko's-mother-as-Prophet thing, I'd be far happier.

>I wouldn't be surprised to see both of your ratings move up a bit come
>your season wrap-up. They seem a bit low, even knowing your tastes, Tim.

Could be. Lisa's in her last few months of graduate work, so I do
have a fair bit going on outside Reviewer-Land here which could be
affecing my thinking. Still, we'll see.

>I am quite surprised that you dislike the revelation of Sisko's origins so
>much. I think you're missing out on a lot of the depth and resonance this
>creates (not to mention the fun).

Well, see, I think you're *creating* such depth and resonance out of
what could potentially be a rather goofy soap-opera twist ("I'm your
father! No, wait, I'm your mother!"). Not that I have any objections
to it, mind you -- as I said, it's intriguing speculation. I'm just
not buying into it at the moment. Show me some evidence that this is
*really* the intent of this whole plot, and we'll see.

And as for missing out on the fun -- geez, what must I do to satisfy
you people? I gave it an 8 (ish) and I said I had a lot of fun
watching it; isn't that enough? When will my penance end? :-)

Tim Lynch


Bill Harris

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to
Timothy W. Lynch wrote:
> Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
> the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
> with concepts of Klingon honor? A sneak attack which makes a sun
> blow up your enemy is hardly a fair fight, and I'm frankly somewhat
> surprised that it qualifies as something which would get Jadzia into
> Sto'Vo'Kor. The way the mission wound up, with the Jem'Hadar
> soldiers in hot pursuit, seems to fit all the requirements, but that
> wasn't how it was supposed to go. I'm a bit lost here.

To quote Worf from "Way of the Warrior": "In war, there is no honor greater
than victory."

Yehoshua

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to
In article <tcwwbhF1...@netcom.com>,

Laurinda Chamberlin <tcw...@netcom.com> wrote:
>tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) writes:
>
>>WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
>>of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's
>>"Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead: [...]
>>

>>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>>with concepts of Klingon honor?
>

>Actually, I've been troubled by the nagging question of who was on that
>shipyard when it was destroyed. If it was a fully automated factory,
>that's one thing,

That doesn't fit my conception of Klingon honor at all. Where's the
honor or glory in blowing up a bloody robot. I'd be *far more upset
by this than...

>if they just blew away several hundred Cardassian civilian workers,
>is it still glorious?

Turn it around and consider that they could very well have just
blown away several hundred Jem'Hadar soldiers in a single go. Taking
out a few hundred soldiers in a day has got to get one Sto'vo'kor
points in the Big Cosmic Book o' Klingon Honor.

>>-- During the dialogue between Jake and Ezri, I had a thought: Ezri is
>>actually young enough both physically and in terms of overall attitude
>>that we might actually see a potential Ezri/Jake romance here.
>

>I agree, but I'm very afraid they're going to pair up Ezri and Bashir, and
>they're going to bring back Vic Fontaine to do it.

Oh good, give me nightmares.

My real nightmare scenario: Jake finds out Ezri likes to dance, and
asks Drum Crazy, er Moondoggie, I mean Vic, yeah, Vic to teach him
how. The only good thing which could come of such a creation would
be Vic hollering "No, schmuck, this is a foxtrot. FOXTROT!!! <whack>"
at Jake.

yehoshua

Dan Kukwa

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to
Timothy W. Lynch wrote:
>
> And as for missing out on the fun -- geez, what must I do to satisfy
> you people? I gave it an 8 (ish) and I said I had a lot of fun
> watching it; isn't that enough? When will my penance end? :-)

When you see "The Magnificent Ferengi" for the blisteringly funny comedy
that it is.

:-)

----Dan--- Who also thinks you've started the season more than a tad on
the
cynical side.

Robert A. Pelak

unread,
Oct 19, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/19/98
to

> pe...@nospam.trail.com (Robert A. Pelak) writes:
> >In article <362A2BB0...@teleport.com>, Richard Izzo
> ><sp...@teleport.com> wrote:
> [I wrote]
>
>
>

> >> > -- I am very curious as to how the doctor in Sisko's vision of Benny
> >> > got his name, "Dr. Wyckoff." You see, Wyckoff is my middle name,
> >> > and it's not exactly a particularly common one. I don't think I like the
> >> > idea of being a Pah-wraith-induced hallucination, but I suppose one
> >> > takes the jobs one can get. :-)
> >>

> >> I don't know, Tim. First an Ensign Lynch is Borgified and practically
> >> eviscerated by Captain Picard, and now you're a hallucination. I think
> >> if the Prophets have something in store for you, you'd better duck
> >> first. =-)
>
> Oh, I've felt that for quite some time, believe me. Remember, I was
> accused in this very group of being fictional once.
>
> >It could be that another Cornellian has joined the Star Trek writing
> >staff since Naren Shankar's departure. Wyckoff would then be a familiar
> >name.
>
> Hmm. That's a fair point (though is there a reference I'm missing
> beyond the Wyckoff Ave. in Collegetown?) -- and in fact, given that
> Ron Moore is both on staff and a Cornellian, it makes a lot of sense.
> Thanks for the thought.
>
> Tim Lynch

None that I am aware of. The Edward Guild Wyckoff was the builder of
Cornell Heights as well as a prolific investor in Ithaca industries. His
father, William Ozmun Wyckoff, had made a fortune selling and producing
Remington typewriters in the 1880s and 90s.

Robert

Laurinda Chamberlin

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Oct 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/21/98
to
yeho...@shell2.tiac.net (Yehoshua) writes:

>In article <tcwwbhF1...@netcom.com>,
>Laurinda Chamberlin <tcw...@netcom.com> wrote:
>>tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) writes:
>>

>>>WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
>>>of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's

>>>"Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead: [...]
>>>

>>>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>>>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>>>with concepts of Klingon honor?
>>

>>Actually, I've been troubled by the nagging question of who was on that
>>shipyard when it was destroyed. If it was a fully automated factory,
>>that's one thing,

>That doesn't fit my conception of Klingon honor at all. Where's the
>honor or glory in blowing up a bloody robot. I'd be *far more upset
>by this than...

>>if they just blew away several hundred Cardassian civilian workers,
>>is it still glorious?

>Turn it around and consider that they could very well have just
>blown away several hundred Jem'Hadar soldiers in a single go. Taking
>out a few hundred soldiers in a day has got to get one Sto'vo'kor

>points in the Big Cosmic Book o' Klingon Honor. [...]

My feeling was that if it were automated or staffed by soldiers, it
would be an honorable target, but is it still honorable if it is
staffed by overworked civilians?

ale...@my-dejanews.com

unread,
Oct 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/21/98
to
In article <tcwwbhF1...@netcom.com>,
tcw...@netcom.com (Laurinda

Chamberlin) wrote:
> yeho...@shell2.tiac.net (Yehoshua) writes:
>
> >In article <tcwwbhF1...@netcom.com>,
> >Laurinda Chamberlin <tcw...@netcom.com> wrote:
> >>tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) writes:
> >>
> >>>WARNING: Although the article below has no shadows that I know
> >>>of, the symbols should be recognizable words discussing DS9's
> >>>"Shadows and Symbols". Spoilers ahead: [...]

> >>>
>
> >>>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
> >>>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
> >>>with concepts of Klingon honor?
> >>
> >>Actually, I've been troubled by the nagging question of who was on that
> >>shipyard when it was destroyed. If it was a fully automated factory,
> >>that's one thing,
>
> >That doesn't fit my conception of Klingon honor at all. Where's the
> >honor or glory in blowing up a bloody robot. I'd be *far more upset
> >by this than...
>
> >>if they just blew away several hundred Cardassian civilian workers,
> >>is it still glorious?
>
> >Turn it around and consider that they could very well have just
> >blown away several hundred Jem'Hadar soldiers in a single go. Taking
> >out a few hundred soldiers in a day has got to get one Sto'vo'kor
> >points in the Big Cosmic Book o' Klingon Honor. [...]
>
> My feeling was that if it were automated or staffed by soldiers, it
> would be an honorable target, but is it still honorable if it is
> staffed by overworked civilians?
>

Presumably there were both overworked
civilians and a large Jem'Hadar garrison
(otherwise the first attack would not have
failed). As long as there are military
targets, I think it counts.

Personally, I wonder more about Worf's own
lack of involvement in the mission. I
remember reading an interview with
Michael Dorn where he complained that
Worf was basically being upstaged and
replaced by Martok as far as Klingon stuff
goes, and this episode keeps up that
tradition. Worf is getting to be irritating in
his uselessness. Why couldn't they have
written a scenario where Worf at least gets
to command the ship that goes to avenge
Jadzia? As it stands, he basically stood there
while O'Brien and Julian did all the work,
and Martok commanded the ship, and some
nameless Klingon bridge officer gets killed.
He said "Fire!" (and Martok made a big deal
of it), but that wasn't the time the flare
worked. Besides, since the whole Jadzia-
Worf thing seemed forced to begin with, his
reaction to her death seems equally so. It
almost seems like they're *trying* to sap all
the drama from Worf's character.

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own

Timo S Saloniemi

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Oct 21, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/21/98
to
In article <70k2o4$ufj$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com> ale...@my-dejanews.com writes:
> tcw...@netcom.com (Laurinda Chamberlin) wrote:
>> yeho...@shell2.tiac.net (Yehoshua) writes:
>> >Laurinda Chamberlin <tcw...@netcom.com> wrote:
>> >>tly...@alumnae.caltech.edu (Timothy W. Lynch) writes:

>> >>>Actually, that's not completely true. I do have one other gripe about
>> >>>the mission, namely this: how, exactly, is this mission supposed to fit
>> >>>with concepts of Klingon honor?

>> >>if they just blew away several hundred Cardassian civilian workers,
>> >>is it still glorious?

>> >Turn it around and consider that they could very well have just
>> >blown away several hundred Jem'Hadar soldiers in a single go. Taking
>> >out a few hundred soldiers in a day has got to get one Sto'vo'kor
>> >points in the Big Cosmic Book o' Klingon Honor. [...]

>> My feeling was that if it were automated or staffed by soldiers, it
>> would be an honorable target, but is it still honorable if it is
>> staffed by overworked civilians?

>Presumably there were both overworked
>civilians and a large Jem'Hadar garrison
>(otherwise the first attack would not have
>failed). As long as there are military
>targets, I think it counts.

I guess Worf summed it up in "Way of the Warrior" already: there is
nothing more honorable than victory. The Klingons were ready to strike
the hospital in "Nor the Battle to the Strong", despite the fact that
humans considered it a protected, non-military target full of
noncombatants. It's likely that Klingons don't believe in the concept
of "noncombatant" at all, given that they all seem to be combatants
themselves.

In fact, one would think that the Klingon concepts of honor only
apply to their affairs with other Klingons, and in some cases to
dealings with beings who have been declared honorable by them. From
the pragmatic point of view, honor is a hindrance in battle - it
might be that the concept was only created to regulate the natural
Klingon infighting so that a more efficient army could be formed to
combat the outsiders.

What, if anything, is honorable in a war with nonhonorable opponents?
Is the number of successful kills a factor? Very likely. Is the
difficulty, or foolhardiness, of the mission another factor? Obviously,
as seen in this episode among others. The ultimate honor comes from
a successful turning of the mission into an enjoyable story to be
retold by campfires in years to come - and a little bit of creative
lisence is only an advantage here, as per "Sword of Kahless" et al.

The killing of innocents probably isn't dishonorable as such. But
killing *nothing but* the innocent and the helpless and still claiming
it to be a battle is a serious social gaffe. "House of Quark" showed
that you can't duel if the opponent refuses to defend him- or herself.
But that's only true for duels, apparently - you can toast defenseless
opponents as long as SOME among them put up a good fight.

The very fact that Klingons possess and use weapons of mass destruction,
as in "The Chase", should be proof enough that victory and the fulfilling
of the mission overrides personal quests for glory. In "A Matter of Honor",
doesn't the Klingon crew claim that the job and the mission come before
anything else? Even before the family?

>Personally, I wonder more about Worf's own
>lack of involvement in the mission. I
>remember reading an interview with
>Michael Dorn where he complained that
>Worf was basically being upstaged and
>replaced by Martok as far as Klingon stuff
>goes, and this episode keeps up that
>tradition. Worf is getting to be irritating in
>his uselessness. Why couldn't they have
>written a scenario where Worf at least gets
>to command the ship that goes to avenge
>Jadzia? As it stands, he basically stood there
>while O'Brien and Julian did all the work,
>and Martok commanded the ship, and some
>nameless Klingon bridge officer gets killed.
>He said "Fire!" (and Martok made a big deal
>of it), but that wasn't the time the flare
>worked. Besides, since the whole Jadzia-
>Worf thing seemed forced to begin with, his
>reaction to her death seems equally so. It
>almost seems like they're *trying* to sap all
>the drama from Worf's character.

I agree wholeheartedly. And why would GENERAL Martok bother with this
mission at all? He has made it clear before that he doesn't intend
to *protect* Worf (or Alexander) from the hardships of Klingon life.
His character was not needed for this story in any way, except perhaps
in some passing scene where he loans the Rotarran to Worf and
asks him to return it in one piece, or else not return at all.

There is still time to develop Worf's role in DS9. So far, he has
been little more than an awkward outsider. His initial appearances
consisted of him trying to find a line of work - his possible role
as a Federation-Klingon liaison was never explored properly - his
Dominion war performances consist solely of his interaction with
Dax (who probably just considered him an especially entertaining
boy toy) - and now he seems cast in the role of the man who'll never
get to revenge the death of his wife, but will always gripe about
it.

What about making Worf a key man in Klingon politics again, in the
wake of the upcoming Kor episode? Would that undermine his potential
as a TNG movie star too much?

Or what about using Worf as a catalyst again: having him do something
really significant without changing his status? Perhaps in some plot
dealing with Kor, the clone emperor, the Klingon-Federation alliance
or something? That could be a slowly building B story across several
episodes, giving Worf something to do, bringing him to Gowron and the
other interesting Klingon characters again, and slowly removing his
dependence on the rest of the DS9 cast, and on DS9-specific story
lines. He has to be able to stand on his own as a character by the
end of the current season, or he'll never get any interesting stuff in
the movies, either!

Timo Saloniemi


Timothy W. Lynch

unread,
Oct 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/22/98
to
Dan Kukwa <dku...@golden.net> writes:

>Timothy W. Lynch wrote:
>>
>> And as for missing out on the fun -- geez, what must I do to satisfy
>> you people? I gave it an 8 (ish) and I said I had a lot of fun
>> watching it; isn't that enough? When will my penance end? :-)

>When you see "The Magnificent Ferengi" for the blisteringly funny comedy
>that it is.

>:-)

Ah. To quote a classic issue of Walt Simonson's _Thor_: "Mayhap
... when icicles ornament Surtur's fiery realm!" Those Norse gods are
always such great conversationalists. :-)


>----Dan--- Who also thinks you've started the season more than a tad
> on the cynical side.

As I said ... could be. I'm sure it's difficult for anyone not to get
a little jaded and cynical after ten years; with luck I'm not letting
it get in the way *too* much, at least.

Besides, that's what the season wrap-up is for. :-)

Tim Lynch

Laurinda Chamberlin

unread,
Oct 22, 1998, 3:00:00 AM10/22/98
to
tsal...@tammi.hut.fi (Timo S Saloniemi) writes:

>In article <70k2o4$ufj$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com> ale...@my-dejanews.com writes:

>>Personally, I wonder more about Worf's own
>>lack of involvement in the mission. I
>>remember reading an interview with
>>Michael Dorn where he complained that
>>Worf was basically being upstaged and
>>replaced by Martok as far as Klingon stuff
>>goes, and this episode keeps up that

>>tradition. [...]

>I agree wholeheartedly. And why would GENERAL Martok bother with this
>mission at all? He has made it clear before that he doesn't intend
>to *protect* Worf (or Alexander) from the hardships of Klingon life.
>His character was not needed for this story in any way, except perhaps
>in some passing scene where he loans the Rotarran to Worf and

>asks him to return it in one piece, or else not return at all. [...]

For some reason, Nog and Martok seem to dominate the totally gratuitous
appearances by recurring guest characters. I didn't like how Worf came
off in this episode either, and it seems high time either to give him
a significant task or to send him back to the Enterprise where he has truly
belonged all along.

Jose Gonzalez

unread,
Oct 25, 1998, 2:00:00 AM10/25/98
to

**Spoilers*** (I know it's been a while since this aired, but here's the
space anyway.)

On 19 Oct 1998, Timothy W. Lynch wrote:

> Not me so much, since I was rather heavily spoiled (right down to it
> being a Pah-wraith vision: harrumph.) I used Lisa as a test subject,
> though, since she *didn't* know in advance. I still liked it, to be
> sure.

I imagine it's a huge pain to be one week behind (at best) everyone else.
Any chance your station is going to catch up sometime this year? In the
meantime, maybe you should just stop reading your e-mail. (:

[snipped me discussing how the Prophets could meet Sisko and then create
him]

> Do I think it's a reach to just drop
> that on the viewer without so much as a "scuse me, but..."? Yes.
> Otherwise, one could just as easily place the Prophets at every focal
> event in Trek history after the fact -- yes, it's theoretically
> possible, but why *do* it?

Well, because they're not concerned with "every focal event in Trek
history," just this very specific situation that involves Sisko and
perhaps their very survival. I don't see this as a can of worms, and I
tend to doubt we're going to see that the Prophets have influenced any
events that don't directly involve Sisko.

> If we get more examination of this, particularly if Sisko starts
> wondering about the logistics,

Eh. To pull your later comparison into it, delving into the logistics and
explaining everthing is just much more B5's style. I don't think it suits
DS9 all that well, and I think it would have to relate to that particular
episode important way. (I think you'd agree that we wouldn't want to see
something akin to B5's "Shadow Dancing" [I think that's the one] that saw
Sheridan and company break into a completely disconnected explanation of
his "dream," which was there only to explain it in minute detail to the
audience, with little relevance to anything else.) Satisfying our
curiosity is probably not enough of a reason to have Sisko openly
pondering how exactly his creation came about.

> I really don't feel like it's solved much.

"The Sisko if of Bajor" isn't enough for you?

> (At the risk of starting a
> firefight, I can contrast this with the revelation about Sinclair in
> B5's "War Without End"; that felt downright *transcendent* to me,
> managing to fit in damn near perfectly with what we knew and
> explaining some unanswered qusetions in the bargain. I figure it's
> the advantage of knowing where you're going in advance -- but that's
> me thinking linearly again. :-) )

Oh, absolutely. I loved "War Without End" so much that I broke down and
wrote a glowing review for it. (I just wish the show could have
maintained that stunning quality, but alas...) On the other hand, JMS
knowing where he was going did *not* prevent that episode from
contradicting "Babylon Squared" in a lot of ways, nor did it stop the
"Talia is a spy" revelation from making very little sense in the context
of what we'd seen before. If B5 has taught me anything, it's that it
isn't enough to know where your plot is heading a few years down the line,
you better know where your characters are going and how they're going to
get there. Otherwise, you end up with a lot of stagnant characters, only
important when the arc has need of them. But that's getting a little off
track. (:

> I think that's a very interesting supposition; I also think it's you
> projecting the explanation you want. That's not to say it's a bad
> explanation by any means, but I for one am just not seeing evidence
> that Behr and company are thinking this deeply about the Prophets.

I think you *are* being a bit too cynical here. Everything I've read from
all of the writers suggest that Behr and company *do* think pretty deeply
about how the Prophets fit into the grand scheme, and I'd bet good money
they've got a plan.

> Remember, these are the same folks who used the Prophets as straight
> men in "Prophet Motive" and who gave us the lovely "Profit and Lace"
> as an example of fine quality entertainment.

Quit holding a grudge. Just let it go. <grin>

> I like your thinking; I
> just don't think it's the episode's thinking at this stage of the
> game. (Boy, I *have* gotten cynical, haven't I?)

<looks innocent> <whistles>

> >Again, I speculated in my review that we needed to see just how obsessed
> >Sisko was to complete his quest, blinded even to his father's safety. It
> >added a disturbing hue to the march through the desert.
>
> Ehhh. Jake would've been plenty, really.

But Jake isn't going to have any problems trekking through the desert, is
he? He's probably in better shape than his father.

> >> OVERALL: Let's call it a 7.5 bordering on 8;
>
> >That's what 7.75 is for. <grin>
>
> Nope. I don't do the quarter-point thing; the error-bars are way to
> big to justify any precision on that level. :-)

Maybe for *you*. (:

> I think you're *creating* such depth and resonance out of
> what could potentially be a rather goofy soap-opera twist ("I'm your
> father! No, wait, I'm your mother!").

I think if that was the intent, there would have been a *lot* more focus
on Sisko's angst than one relatively short scene. I saw it more as a
means to an end.

> I'm just
> not buying into it at the moment. Show me some evidence that this is
> *really* the intent of this whole plot, and we'll see.

Well, that's not really within my domain. I think (and hope) Behr and
company will give you what you're looking for down the line.

> And as for missing out on the fun -- geez, what must I do to satisfy
> you people? I gave it an 8 (ish) and I said I had a lot of fun
> watching it; isn't that enough? When will my penance end? :-)

The Lynch is of Usenet, but he will find no rest there. Sorry. (:


-
Jose


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