The Cynics Corner

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

"Tacking into the Wind"

by David E. Sluss

16 May 1999

 
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THE BOTTOM LINE
: The best DS9 episode in years.

CYNICS CORNER RATING: 9.3 (A)

DISCONTINUITY OF THE WEEK: For all the good things in this episode, none of which I can mention in this review, of course, there seemed to be a slight continuity glitch between this episode and its predecessor, "When It Rains..." Kira claims that the Alliance "still doesn't know" why Klingon vessels are immune to the Breen Energy-Suck. That doesn't quite jibe with the story we got last week, when we were told that one Klingon vessel was protected during the battle in "The Changing Face of Evil" because they happened to have done some technobabble procedure. That procedure was then repeated on all Klingon vessels, but because of differing design, the Romulan and Federation ships could not be protected in the same way. So the issue is not that the Alliance doesn't know why the Klingon ships are protected; they do. Their problem is figuring out what analogous thing to do to ships with differing design. Semantics? No, a genuine slip-up in DS9's committee-writing process, I think.

DISCONTINUITY OF THE WEEK RUNNER-UP: Has everyone on DS9's writing staff forgotten about Odo's need to regenerate? What's this about Odo "resting" by laying on a bunk? Since shape-shifting and maintaining other forms is accelerating the disease, and since Odo's humanoid shape is not his natural form, wouldn't it be best for Odo to remain liquid as much as possible, particularly at the end, when the fact that he has failed to fool Kira is revealed? Break out the bucket.

CONTRIVANCE OF THE WEEK: How could Odo know precisely how deteriorated the Female Changeling has become, to the point where, when he mimics her, every out-of-place skin flake is precisely where it is on the real Female Changeling?

MISSING REACTION OF THE WEEK: I certainly hope we get to see Sisko's reaction to the death of Gowron at Worf's hands. When Sisko and Worf talked, Brooks' and Dorn's line delivery and facial expressions suggest that Sisko figured Worf's plan might involve Gowron's demise, and that he was de facto endorsing the idea if Worf deemed it necessary. It wouldn't surprise me if that were indeed the case, in light of Sisko's ruthless actions in "In the Pale Moonlight," for instance, but either way, we need to see some reaction by him.

ILLOGIC OF THE WEEK: The weakest link in this episode is the O'Brien/Bashir/Section 8 storyline, and more illogic in this subplot presented itself here. O'Brien says "We'll spread the word that there's a cure, and then capture the Section 8 goon when he comes to the station." Hello? Assuming Section 8 doesn't see right through the absurd charade of the fake cure and actually sends an agent, how could O'Brien and Bashir know who the agent is? Section 8 probably doesn't publish pictures of their employees in their quarterly report. But then, one would just need to look for disembarking passengers wearing black leather. And why would Section 8 have to "send" anyone? One of their stooges, Admiral Wooden, is already on the station, even though it still seems that the genetically-enhanced brain of Dr. Bashir has core-dumped all memories of "Inter Arma Enim Silent Leges." Other flaws in reasoning here include not entertaining the likelihood that Section 8 might simply arrange Bashir's assassination. It also seems like Section 8 could probably do what needs to be done through computer hacks and/or stooges like Wooden, whether the "cure" was for real or not. The bottom line here is that Bashir and O'Brien seem to be underestimating Section 8; unfortunately, next week's episode suggests that Section 8 actually falls into their trap...

Cheryl M. Capezzuti contributed to this review.
  

Previous: "When It Rains..."
Next: "Extreme Measures"
NEXT WEEK: The return of that sneaky man in the leather union suit.

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This review is copyright 1999 David E. Sluss
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