Date: June 12, 2020
Season 1, Episodes 14, 15, and 16
Musical Accompaniment: Some Disney piano music
Interstellar News: I think I’ve finally kicked the sinus infection, but this damn cough… ugh!
Favorite Quote from “Progress”:
Sisko: You know, you’re causing a lot of trouble.
Mullibok: I can’t tell you how delighted I am to hear it.Sisko has finally met his match in sass.
So what had happened in “Progress” was…: Two big things are happening around DS9: Jake and Nog have an idea and Bajor is attempting their first large-scale energy transfer.
Jake and Nog are playing cards and overhear that Quark has a surplus of yamok sauce that, apparently, only Cardassians like. They make a deal with a man to trade the sauce for his 100 self-sealing stem bolts (whatever those are). They find the Bajoran who was originally supposed to buy the bolts and trade him the bolts for seven tessipates of land, as Jake is adamant that land is good. Back at Quark’s, Odo is curious if Quark knows anything about this “No-Jay Consortium” who owns this last piece of land Bajor needs in order to build a facility. The boys, proud of their work, are finally about to profit.
Dax and Kira are out doing a final sweep of the moon that’s about to be tapped for energy when they read three lifeforms, so Kira beams down and is surrounded by two farmers straight out of Rocky Horror. Turns out they work for Mullibok, the farmer, who is in no hurry to leave. Kira decides to stay and try to talk some sense into him, to no avail. She brings some security guards who, during a kerfuffle, stun Mullibok… so she stays again to help him heal and finish his kiln. Sisko beams down and has a “come to the Prophets” talk with her so she lets Mullibok light the kiln, she then phasers it, lights his cottage on fire, and requests from the transporter that there are “two to beam up”.
…”There was this big, ugly tree”: The Jake and Nog story was funny, adorable, and actually panned out for them in the end. I was curious where it was going to end up, and I wasn’t disappointed. In fact it took two teenage boys all of a few days to make a profit out of the yamok sauce that Quark thought was worthless… see what happens when you’re angry, you can’t feel your lobes tingle. It also is a good vehicle for showing the boys they have a lot to learn, like how to Google “what is a self-sealing stem bolt” and “what are they used for”.
Kira and Mullibok’s story, however, was really damn deep. It’s obvious Millibok has made a nice life for himself and he is one with the land. Doesn’t Kira remember saying “The land and the people are one” and now she’s trying to part this man from the land he’s been one with for the last 40 years? Unfortunately he’s not a starring role, so this story is all about her journey. She has to realize she’s part of the government now, and the government isn’t all bad when you’re on the other side… right? She’s been fighting her whole life for Bajoran independence, but these things take time, so when she doesn’t know what to do she’s still got to keep busy. It was for sure a breakthrough moment for her to help Mullibok build the kiln, have him but the last piece, and then put her foot down when he wants the suicide-by-moon option and burn it all down. I hate that there’s no resolution and I’m sure there won’t be a follow-up, but I’m glad Kira is realizing what she needs to do to achieve her goals. It’s a similar journey Data went on in “The Ensigns of Command“, except he got the people to see reason eventually. I truly liked both parts of the episode, 8 packets of yamok sauce for this one.
Favorite Quote from “If Wishes Were Horses”:
Odo: Ladies and gentlemen, and all androgynous creatures, your attention please! As you may have noticed, we’re experiencing some difficulties. I’m going to have to ask you all to please refrain from using your imaginations.
Quark: Just because you don’t have an imagination, don’t ruin it for the rest of us.Odo believes gender is a social construct and I am all here for it! I can forgive him for his diatribe a few episodes back now. Also, Quark is good with the comeback lines.
So what had happened in “If Wishes Were Horses” was…: Quark is thinking about adding family-friendly holosuites, Bashir is striking out with Dax (I’m shocked I tell you), and O’Brien is brilliantly telling a bedtime story to Molly. Suddenly Rumpelstiltskin appears in Molly’s room, a very forward Dax is in Bashir’s room, and Buck Bokai (a baseball player) is following Jake around. Trying to figure out why people’s imaginations are manifesting in real life, the real Dax takes a reading and wonders if there’s a rupture in space. Dax and Bashir find out the Vulcans encountered an issue years ago, but it blew everything up. The three imagined beings conference together and things just got interesting.
The senior officers develop a plan and O’Brien shoots a bomb at the rift, but it does no good. Rumple asks O’Brien if he would sacrifice his daughter to save everyone and somehow it dawns on Sisko that they’re living the plot of “WNOHGB” and everyone has to believe that there’s nothing wrong and suddenly nothing is wrong. As he’s resting from the ordeal, Bokai comes to visit Sisko and explains they’re a species who was curious and they’re on a mission to encounter new life. Maybe they’ll be in touch in a year or so, maybe, but Bokai throws Sisko a baseball as a memento – and my husband tells me this is important.
…”But you haven’t told us anything about your species”: Good thing no one thought of the Stay Puft Marshmallow man! To be honest, I really thought it had something to do with Quark and his expansion of the holosuites but I was both happy and sad about the actual reasoning. On one hand it’s awesome that there are other species with the same mission as the Federation, but on the other hand it’s been done at least twice before in the episodes I linked to above. On a third hand, if you’re Arax for example, it was absolutely wonderful that the alien that took on the Buck Bokai persona totally leaned into all of the baseball analogies – though “Evolution” in TNG also had a baseball lover so there’s that. The very last one of my hands liked the DS9 spin on making thoughts come to life, but I am saddened by Kira’s thoughts being solely violent and terrifying for her.
I will give Bashir a bit of credit as he absolutely doesn’t want to do anything improper with Dax at first, this shows he has heard her on some level… but he’s still a lech. This also leads to a wonderful conversation between Dax and Bashir and hopefully he’ll stop being a lech. Poor Odo is trying to deal with snow and emu-like creatures, but he has a good laugh when Quark’s “women” are missing and all of his patrons are winning, it evened out in the end. I hope we get a follow up on this, even if it was just a “meh” episode. 5 horses for this episode, but bring your own saddle!
Favorite Quote from “The Forsaken”:
Odo: Commander, I have a problem.
Sisko: Quark again?
Odo: No, sir, this one’s named Lwaxana.The whole damn conversation is hysterical… read the rest here.
The Complaint of the Changeling: “Procreation does not require changing how you smell, or writing bad poetry, or sacrificing various plants to serve as tokens of affection. In any event, it’s all irrelevant to me.”
So what had happened in “The Forsaken” was…: Bashir is at dinner with three ambassadors and he is certainly overwhelmed by their neediness when Lwaxana Troi exclaims something was stolen. Enter her shining white knight Odo who is able to thwart the thief and return her item. Meanwhile O’Brien is having an argument with the station’s Cardassian computer and an unidentified probe comes out of the wormhole.
Everything kind of happens at once. Lwaxana and Odo get stuck in a lift because the power went down because the probe keeps sucking energy out all over the station. Odo is absolutely horrified at being stuck with Lwaxana but also because he’s nearing his regeneration cycle. They wind up having a lovely chat and Lwaxana takes care of Odo, who now has his turn to be grateful. Bashir tries to get the ambassadors to go back to their rooms but a fire breaks out and he has to do some quick thinking. Thankfully they all survive it and the ambassadors gratefully call him “Julian” and exclaim they’ll let Starfleet know what an excellent officer they have. O’Brien realizes he’s got a puppy on his hand and goes off the deep end with that analogy and builds a “doghouse”, which is really a subprogram to house the probe’s information so it stops disrupting the station.
…”Keep it off the furniture”: Boy oh boy does Lwaxana Troi get better with age. If anyone could get Odo to soften a bit, it’s tenacious Troi. She’s back to her flirty self and Betazoid forwardness, and it’s a breath of fresh air for stuffy Odo. She shows him that you can allow others to care for you and it is nice to sometimes be taken care of, especially when you’re in good company. I also enjoyed the banter between O’Brien and the computer and it’s a typical engineer who knows something is wrong and his commanding officer kind of rolling his eyes and going “okay”, but Sisko knows he can trust his people no matter how ridiculous they sound. I do think O’Brien ripped his solution from Barclay’s “Ship in a Bottle“, but I did appreciate the puppy analogy follow through.
Speaking of puppy analogies, here’s one I give to my first year students. Two roommates have a puppy and a potted plant. The puppy tells them when he needs to be taken out, fed, needs attention, or is in pain. The potted plant, however, just sits there all nice and pretty in the window absolutely sure no one will forget about her because she’s so pretty. The puppy, however, gets a lot of attention and the roommates forget about the plant and she begins to wither. They suddenly realize she needs some attention so they begin to bring her back to life. I use this to illustrate that students need to advocate for themselves and not assume that their teachers know they are struggling or are in need of help. Sometimes it’s possible to nurse a plant back to health, but sometimes it’s too late and you have to start all over. This is true in life, as well, you should let others know when you need help… none of us are from Betazed. 7 subprograms and a pink wig for this episode.