Date: July 14, 2020
Season 4, Episodes 10 and 11
Musical Accompaniment: Flute covers are apparently a thing.
Interstellar News: This was a two-part episode that, again, did not say “Part 1” and “Part 2”. That’s really annoying, by the way.
Dax: It seems to be opening and closing completely at random. No unusual readings, no ships coming through. For all we know, the Bajorans are right. Maybe it is a message from the Prophets.
Sisko: If it is, they didn’t tell me.
Dax: Maybe the Prophets don’t recognize you with the new beard.Dax being sassy and I love it.
Sage Sisko: “We’re not looking to destroy paradise, Mister President. We’re looking to save it.”
Kira: I suppose your gods aren’t as cryptic as ours.
Worf: Our gods are dead. Ancient Klingon warriors slew them a millennia ago. They were more trouble than they were worth.Every time I think I can’t love Klingons more, Worf opens his mouth.
Sisko: That is the bottom line, isn’t it? What am I going to do? These aren’t evil people, Odo. These are people I’ve worked with. They’re my friends, people I respect. How can I turn against them?
Odo: It seems to me, if they have committed treason against the Federation, the Federation that you swore to protect, you won’t be turning against them. They will have turned against you.Odo being super wise and helping Sisko during his time of distress.
“Homefront” – “Fear is a powerful and dangerous thing.”: The wormhole is acting funny, Odo is upset that Dax moved his furniture while he was regenerating, and a conference between the Federation and the Romulans was sabotaged and a changeling was spotted on video at the scene. Sisko and Odo head to Earth where Sisko is made acting Head of Security. We meet Sisko’s dad in New Orleans and Nog shows up because there are fresh tube grubs, yum, and he wants some help and advice from Sisko. The Federation President doesn’t want to increase security (much like 45 who is pretending Covid isn’t a thing, but I digress) but Odo materializes in front of him and he agrees to some items. Odo discovers Admiral Leyton is a changeling, hypothesizes the wormhole randomness was a cloaked Dominion attack, and a planet-wide blackout happens so the real Leyton uses that as fuel to ask for a State of Emergency, just like when the Borg threat happened.
“Paradise Lost” – “Don’t make anyone else pay for your mistakes.”: Sisko has more questions than answers as things aren’t adding up. When Odo finds a transporter log that connects some Starfleet cadets everything starts to fall in place as Leyton engineered the fake Dominion threat so as to be the one in charge of the defense of Earth. Leyton shows up to dinner and orders Sisko back to DS9 since he won’t get on board just as a shapeshifter who appears as O’Brien shows up and tells him there are four other changelings on Earth. Sisko is framed for being a shapeshifter but Odo breaks him out of jail and the Defiant is on the way with Lieutenant Arriaga who can attest to Leyton ordering him to make the wormhole appear unstable. Benteen is told the Defiant has all changelings on board but won’t actually destroy the ship, so Leyton has no more supporters and he resigns in a huff.
My Thoughts and Impressions: One thing I don’t understand is why people keep asking other people where someone else is. Odo asks Quark where Dax is, but Odo could have just as easily asked the damn computer where Dax was… come on! Another thing I didn’t quite understand is how easily everyone from Starfleet got used to currency. On TOS and TNG they were always surprised when things cost stuff, but no one here seems to be hard up for money or confused by having to pay Quark for food and drink. It’s something obviously handled off camera but it was such a big deal in the first two series that I’m sad they didn’t address it in some way. A big thing that struck me about Part 1 is the shock of Sisko realizing he was seeing changelings everywhere, because that’s how Covid 19 is panning out here in America. Every time someone isn’t wearing a mask or practicing social distancing I wonder if I’ve been exposed, and it’s terrible on my anxiety level.
“Homefront” was so much better than “Paradise Lost” which is weird because a lot of Part 1’s are usually just the set up and it’s kind of meh and then the Part 2’s (where all the action happens) are pretty fantastic, but here I find that I wasn’t as satisfied with the conclusion. Maybe because I know just how ugly humans can be and know that Starfleet Admirals in particular are just the biggest bunch of douchebags, or maybe it’s because the climax just wasn’t as spectacular as the set up was. Sisko is amazing, as always, when he’s actually ordering Nog and the other cadet… he does very good “bad cop” and commanding officer voice in order to get what he wants, though it’s also because he was talking to the children rather than his colleagues. Worf shows he has the chops for commandings a starship and he’s not afraid to fight but also doesn’t use that as a first option either. O’Brien as the changeling is fantastic because it really shows the depth of Colm Meany’s acting ability, but Bashir and Kira don’t have much to do in these two parts. Odo, as always, is the outcast but he doesn’t let that stop him from doing his job. As I’m rating both parts as one big giant episode, this gets 7 slices of BBQ chicken pizza and a side of garlic knots for good measure.