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Mama Robotnik
(01-09-2012, 01:28 AM)
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Nearly fourteen years ago two episodes of Star Trek aired. These episodes were broadcast in succession, and caused shockwaves of controversy throughout Star Trek fandom. They told stories that illuminated a darker and more depraved side of the utopian vision originated by Gene Roddenberry, and redefined what it meant to be a part of the Federation. These episodes more than any other, made us question the moral high ground of the supposed “good guys”.

The episodes were Inquisition (broadcast 8 April 1998), and a week later In the Pale Moonlight (broadcast 15 April 1998). Both were part of the war-arc being followed by the consistently impressive Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

First a bit of context: Deep Space Nine had been exploring humanity as viewed through the lens of aliens. Unlike The Next Generation that portrayed the humans as being perfect, advanced, enlightened beings (with rare exceptions), and Voyager’s absolutely flaccid approach to character depth, DS9 tried to look at the darkness that the rest of the franchise avoided. A few quotes from other episodes just to help illustrate the approach taken by the writers:

Originally Posted by Quark

Let me tell you something about humans, nephew. They're a wonderful, friendly people as long as their bellies are full and their holosuites are working... but take away their creature comforts deprive them of food, sleep, sonic showers... put their lives in jeopardy over an extended period of time and those same, friendly, intelligent, wonderful people will become as nasty and as violent as the most bloodthirsty Klingon. You don't believe me? Look at those faces. Look in their eyes.

Originally Posted by Eddington

I know you. I was like you once, but then I opened my eyes. Open your eyes, Captain. Why is the Federation so obsessed about the Maquis? We've never harmed you. And yet we're constantly arrested and charged with terrorism. Starships chase us through the Badlands, and our supporters are harassed and ridiculed. Why? Because we've left the Federation, and that's the one thing you can't accept. Nobody leaves paradise. Everyone should want to be in the Federation. Hell, you even want the Cardassians to join. You're only sending them replicators so that one day they can take their rightful place on the Federation Council. You know, in some ways you're worse than the Borg. At least they tell you about their plans for assimilation. You're more insidious... you assimilate people and they don't even know it.

[Garak takes a drink of root beer]

Quark: What do you think?

Garak: It's vile.

Quark: I know. It's so bubbly and cloying and happy.

Garak: Just like the Federation.

Quark: And you know what's really frightening? If you drink enough of it, you begin to like it.

Garak: It's insidious.

Quark: Just like the Federation.

So, humans and humanity might not be perfect? Well, these episodes take this message and run with it, portraying the Federation as more insidious and with a capability for clandestine malevolence greater than any of the regular “bad guys” species.

Lets have a look shall we?


Inquisition – The eighteenth episode of the sixth season of Deep Space Nine.




(note: some of the DVD grabs above are from this episode, others are from events in future episodes that happen as a consequence of this story)

Inquisition follows a day in the life of Doctor Julian Bashir, the genetically engineered Superman who is Deep Space Nine’s physician. He’s very tired, and is suspected of being a traitor. He’s arrested, shackled, paraded through the station, condescended to by his old friends and interrogated while exhausted and suffering induced sleep deprivation.

Doctor Bashir eventually uses his enhanced perceptive abilities to realise the truth, that he is in an elaborate holodeck facade designed to provoke him into revealing his nonexistent treachery. He realises this and the hold is broken, ending the program.

The concept in itself is concerning, that Starfleet would abduct its own officers and put them under intense duress while inserted into a surreal manufactured reality to test their loyalties. It becomes apparent that Doctor Bashir has also been under non-consensual surgery to install an implant to monitor his reactions to the test.

The most shocking revelation comes at the end, when Doctor Bashir’s captors reveal themselves. They are the clandestine and long-lived secret police of the United Federation of Planets, and call themselves Section 31. We are informed that for the entire multi-century existence of the peaceful benevolent Federation, these operatives have been working behind the scenes to disarm, dismantle and destroy suspected threats. In the episode, they infer that immediate execution (“Then we would not be having this conversation”) for traitors is one of their many policies. Future episodes confirm that blackmail, threats, enabling the imprisonment of innocents, manipulating the strings of enemy governments, torture and genocide are well within their operating parameters.

This revelation changed Star Trek. Throughout the series, we have been exposed to the intelligence agencies and ruthless militia of the alien races, secure in the knowledge that future humans are too advanced and moral to take such an approach. “Inquisition” informs us that this couldn’t be further from the truth, that the humans of the Federation has the most cunning, insidious and shadowy secret police of them all. We see the famed Romulan intelligence bureau The Tal Shiar have their strings pulled easily and mechanically by a human concern they didn’t even know existed.

On the early internet, discussions flared as to the revelation of this episode. The high ground held by humanity in all previous episodes, seemed somewhat less secure. The best however was yet to come. If “Inquisition” was a megaton, the following week’s “In the Pale Moonlight” would be a thermonuclear Supernova.



In the Pale Moonlight – The nineteenth episode of the sixth season of Deep Space Nine.




In the Pale Moonlight is a story told by Captain Benjamin Sisko, the lead of Deep Space Nine. He’s alone in his quarters, talking to the emotionless and nonthinking voice of the station computer. He insists he has a dark secret to tell, one so dire he couldn’t dare relay it to his trusted colleagues or friends. With a drink in hand, he tells the computer his tale.

A few weeks ago, Captain Sisko had to read out the latest casualty figures from the ongoing Dominion War. He’s a nearly-broken man, desperate to find a way to turn the dwindling fortunes of humanity. He approaches the one person on the station capable of solving a problem no matter the cost: the resident alien tailor, Garak.

(Context: At this point in the show’s development, it is known that before he settled into tailoring, Garak was a spy, assassin, murderer and expert torturer, and did not care if his missions involved targeting the innocent or guilty)

Sisko and Garak discuss the best way of turning the war around – bring the neutral Romulan Empire into the conflict as allies. They decide the only way they can do this is to fabricate evidence that The Dominion intends to invade the Romulan homeworld.

This "dance with The Devil" leads to Sisko doing a number of things “unfitting of a Starfleet officer” including, bribery, falsifying evidence, providing a component for a weapon of mass destruction to a shady character as barter, freeing an attempted murderer, threatening to kill, arranging secret meetings, and eventually being an accessory to the murder of an innocent Romulan dignitary and his bodyguards. As a broken man, alone in his quarters and possibly half-drunk, he reflects that the scheming worked, and that the Romulans have now joined the war and are sacrificing thousands of their troops and ships because of circumstances he manufactured. He concedes at the very end, with all the murder, lies and war, that “I think I can live with it”.

The episode is still angrily debated to this day. The moral centre of the show, the Captain of the station, committing crimes far beyond most of the “bad guys of the week” in order to save the Federation. If “Inquistion” shattered the high ground the humans of Star Trek stood on, it was “In the Pale Moonlight” that nuked it.

The Episodes

You can still occasionally find damning opinions of these two episodes on the internet, how they “betrayed Roddenberry’s vision”, etcetera. Regardless of the consequences, the episodes are very well written and acted, and a hugely significant part of the Star Trek canon.

My reasons for making this thread are threefold:

(1) To write something about two pieces of godawesome television. I quite selfishly, enjoyed writing this.

(2) To give the underrated and underdiscussed Deep Space Nine a bit more exposure. Most threads we see are about Kirk, Picard, Star Trek 2009. The Next Generation, or how shit Voyager and Enterprise were. Deep Space Nine deserves your love, these episodes moreso.

(3) To ask GAF – is there anyone on this forum who has seen these episodes, and thinks that Star Trek is worse for them existing? That in shattering the idea that the Federation was near-perfect, they took something vital away from the franchise? This isn’t an opinion I hold, but I’m wondering if anyone on GAF does.

Thanks for reading. And if you haven’t seen them, watch “Inquisition” and “In the Pale Moonlight”, they’re bloody brilliant.
Kraftwerk
(01-09-2012, 01:32 AM)
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Always wanted to get into Star Trek.
siddx
Magnificent Eager Mighty Brilliantly Erect Registereduser
(01-09-2012, 01:34 AM)
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Pale moonlight is probably in my top 3 favorite trek episodes of all time.
elrechazado
Banned
(01-09-2012, 01:35 AM)
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DS9 is so underrated. So many great characters with real depth.
Meus Renaissance
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(01-09-2012, 01:35 AM)
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I didn't see Section 31 as anymore morally questionable than the stringent Prime Directive than, in earlier episodes than the ones listed here, demonstrated Starfleets complete lack of regard for the well being of pre-warp civilisations. You would have heard similar themes in the advocation of that Directive as you did of Section 31.
SatelliteOfLove
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(01-09-2012, 01:36 AM)
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I remember these episodes airing. Back then, "Trekkies" and the idea of superfans of media outside of sports was a distant amusing idea at the time. Now it doesn't shock me that there was people raging in newsletters and newsgroups over this.

Originally Posted by elrechazao

DS9 is so underrated. So many great characters with real depth.

It was religiously watched by me every week. Even TNG was "if I was free".
Kettch
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(01-09-2012, 01:43 AM)
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Originally Posted by elrechazao

DS9 is so underrated. So many great characters with real depth.

It isn't underrated here at least. Going by past threads, I'm pretty sure DS9 is GAF's favorite.
elrechazado
Banned
(01-09-2012, 01:44 AM)
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Originally Posted by Kettch

It isn't underrated here at least. Going by past threads, I'm pretty sure DS9 is GAF's favorite.

I didn't say it was underrated here, and Here isn't the only place with star trek fans, or sci fi fans generally...
ErasureAcer
Banned
(01-09-2012, 01:44 AM)
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DS9 is in my top 5 TV shows. Great that you're bringing attention to it for outsiders but you really did spoil a lot about Sisko and Bashir. It's up on Netflix Streaming for those interested.
Zzoram
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(01-09-2012, 01:47 AM)
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Star Trek Deep Space 9 was the best Star Trek.

It has an excellent ensemble cast that all got very well developed and grew to have great chemistry. It also had a realistic portrayal of human nature, and more emphasis on the alien perspective of various events. DS9 had the most grey of any Star Trek when it came to morality.
Stumpokapow
listen to the mad man
(01-09-2012, 01:50 AM)
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Were these episodes actually controversial? I mean, obviously they're a stark contrast to the sunshine and rainbows view of Trek, but I don't recall either then or since then there being an actual contingent of people who kicked up a controversy about it. :p
Rentahamster
Rodent Whores
(01-09-2012, 01:50 AM)
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A lot of the DS9's interesting features are so uncharacteristic of orthodox Trek that I can't help but wonder how much of it was influenced by JMS's intial pitch of Bablyon 5 to Paramount.

Exploring the dark nature of humanity was an important theme in both series, but it seems so out of place in the Star Trek universe.
Toxa
Junior Member
(01-09-2012, 01:51 AM)
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DS9 is the best show,at least for me
DarthWoo
I'm glad Grandpa porked a Chinese Muslim
(01-09-2012, 01:56 AM)
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Your posting of Vreenak's face made me want to go watch the scene, and I found this which I thought was great:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BwbPRCRkMy0
JdFoX187
Banned
(01-09-2012, 01:56 AM)
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I liked that the episodes gave some much-needed depth to the Federation. The one thing I really disliked about much of TNG was how humanity was so perfect and enlightened. The abolition of money, the drive to better itself collectively and all of that just flew in the face of everything that made humanity interesting as either protagonists or antagonists, depending on the perspective. These at least acknowledged that and did some pretty interesting things with the story.

I still consider TOS better than DS9, probably just due to my bias toward the universe building of the original series and the nostalgia of it. But I loved how DS9 and season 3 of Enterprise contained these real long story arcs. The episodic nature of the other series does get a little tiresome, especially when it draws on as long as TNG does.
Zzoram
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(01-09-2012, 01:57 AM)
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Originally Posted by Rentahamster

A lot of the DS9's interesting features are so uncharacteristic of orthodox Trek that I can't help but wonder how much of it was influenced by JMS's intial pitch of Bablyon 5 to Paramount.

Exploring the dark nature of humanity was an important theme in both series, but it seems so out of place in the Star Trek universe.

Babylon 5 was great too, I like it equally to DS9, maybe even slightly better.
StalkerUKCG
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(01-09-2012, 02:00 AM)
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DS9 is such a mixed bag, On one had you have some great sci-fi episodes and on the other terrible religion drivel that was cringe worthy. The final episode for instance is great if you stop watching before the fire caves All that crap was unneeded and only spoilt DS9 for me.
Amir0x
Banned
(01-09-2012, 02:00 AM)
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These two episodes are some of the only Star Trek episodes I've ever enjoyed, period. I greatly prefer their grey area painting of humanity and have always felt the utopian idealism of other Star Trek episodes to be fake and cloying.

I guess that's what makes me not a Star Trek fan, though.
siddx
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(01-09-2012, 02:00 AM)
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I don't recall whether they were controversial either, but at the time I was living overseas and without internet access so I wouldn't know. I do remember reading that the Voyager episode where Neelix and Tuvok get melded together into a new being was quite controversial at the time.
BruceLeeRoy
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(01-09-2012, 02:01 AM)
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Wow never watched DS9 but that was a absolutely fascinating write up.
Thanks Mama.
Akyan
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(01-09-2012, 02:02 AM)

Originally Posted by Rentahamster

A lot of the DS9's interesting features are so uncharacteristic of orthodox Trek that I can't help but wonder how much of it was influenced by JMS's intial pitch of Bablyon 5 to Paramount.

Exploring the dark nature of humanity was an important theme in both series, but it seems so out of place in the Star Trek universe.

There was a spot of controversy at the time as the Babylon 5 guys pitched there ideas to various networks including Paramount. It was only a few years later an both DS9 and B5 started at about the same time with quite a few premise similarities....

Anyway nothing ever came of it and we got two good shows, so can't complain too much. :)
akira28
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(01-09-2012, 02:05 AM)
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No matter how lofty Roddenberry's vision, you can't get away from human nature. The thought was that we could outgrow some of the darker aspects, and on the whole, the Federation humans did. But with all the different elite Federation groups, and secret cabals mentioned by the franchise, there are always people who 'know better' and 'keep things from coming apart at the seams', 'from behind the curtains', etc. It's not the first time they've hinted at the darker side of Utopia in the Trek universe, but those were some pretty heavy episodes. I wish they'd do more like it, but maybe it would ruin the magic a bit.

DS9 is 2nd best Trek ever.
StalkerUKCG
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(01-09-2012, 02:06 AM)
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Oh and yeah, Code of Honor is the most controversial episode of star trek
Sqorgar
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(01-09-2012, 02:08 AM)
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Originally Posted by Zzoram

Star Trek Deep Space 9 was the best Star Trek.

It has an excellent ensemble cast that all got very well developed and grew to have great chemistry. It also had a realistic portrayal of human nature, and more emphasis on the alien perspective of various events. DS9 had the most grey of any Star Trek when it came to morality.

I think Ira Steven Behr is to credit for that. Man loves his gray.
Rentahamster
Rodent Whores
(01-09-2012, 02:19 AM)
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Originally Posted by siddx

I do remember reading that the Voyager episode where Neelix and Tuvok get melded together into a new being was quite controversial at the time.

I liked that episode and felt that Janeway approached that issue in a more Federation-y way than these two DS9 episodes.

Originally Posted by Akyan

There was a spot of controversy at the time as the Babylon 5 guys pitched there ideas to various networks including Paramount. It was only a few years later an both DS9 and B5 started at about the same time with quite a few premise similarities....

Anyway nothing ever came of it and we got two good shows, so can't complain too much. :)

Yeah, they're both good. It's just that secret agencies whose ends justify the means for the greater good was a built in cornerstone of B5's pre-planned story arc, whereas Section 31 is kinda just retconned in. It just seems awkward. Perhaps that's just my bias talking, I dunno. I'd like to hear what others think about it, though.

Originally Posted by akira28

No matter how lofty Roddenberry's vision, you can't get away from human nature.

But wasn't part of the "lofty vision" was that we can get away from the darker aspects of are nature and overcome it?
Valhelm
contribute something
(01-09-2012, 02:21 AM)
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Originally Posted by Mama Robotnik

Am I the only one reminded by the Thalmor by this image?
nel e nel
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(01-09-2012, 02:22 AM)
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Is this really more controversial than the first interracial kiss?



EDIT: OK, controversial within the Star Trek franchise, my misunderstanding. I thought we were talking controversial in the greater scheme of life.
Zen
Banned
(01-09-2012, 02:26 AM)

Originally Posted by BruceLeeRoy

Wow never watched DS9 but that was a absolutely fascinating write up.
Thanks Mama.

You really should. The first Season is weak, but that's the norm for most shows. It has the deepest bench of talented actors and interesting characters of any Trek series.
nel e nel
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(01-09-2012, 02:27 AM)
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Originally Posted by Rentahamster

But wasn't part of the "lofty vision" was that we can get away from the darker aspects of are nature and overcome it?

Bingo! I always remember an oft-quoted interview regarding Star Trek (can't recall with whom) and they asked someone why Capt. Picard was bald, and wouldn't we have found a cure for baldness in the future. The reply was along the lines of in the Star Trek vision of the future, humanity has become enlightened enough to not care about baldness.
akira28
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(01-09-2012, 02:32 AM)
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Originally Posted by Rentahamster

But wasn't part of the "lofty vision" was that we can get away from the darker aspects of are nature and overcome it?

Outgrow it, control it maybe, escape it completely? I don't think even the Original Series tried to claim that.
Zzoram
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(01-09-2012, 02:42 AM)
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Originally Posted by Quark

Let me tell you something about humans, nephew. They're a wonderful, friendly people as long as their bellies are full and their holosuites are working... but take away their creature comforts, deprive them of food, sleep, sonic showers... put their lives in jeopardy over an extended period of time and those same, friendly, intelligent, wonderful people will become as nasty and as violent as the most bloodthirsty Klingon. You don't believe me? Look at those faces. Look in their eyes.

Originally Posted by Eddington

I know you. I was like you once, but then I opened my eyes. Open your eyes, Captain. Why is the Federation so obsessed about the Maquis? We've never harmed you. And yet we're constantly arrested and charged with terrorism. Starships chase us through the Badlands, and our supporters are harassed and ridiculed. Why? Because we've left the Federation, and that's the one thing you can't accept. Nobody leaves paradise. Everyone should want to be in the Federation. Hell, you even want the Cardassians to join. You're only sending them replicators so that one day they can take their rightful place on the Federation Council. You know, in some ways you're worse than the Borg. At least they tell you about their plans for assimilation. You're more insidious... you assimilate people and they don't even know it.

[Garak takes a drink of root beer]

Quark: What do you think?

Garak: It's vile.

Quark: I know. It's so bubbly and cloying and happy.

Garak: Just like the Federation.

Quark: And you know what's really frightening? If you drink enough of it, you begin to like it.

Garak: It's insidious.

Quark: Just like the Federation.

These quotes are amazing.
-Minsc-
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(01-09-2012, 02:46 AM)
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These episodes were nearly half my life ago, wow that starts to put time in to perspective. Back when I was in my teens I had shows like DS9, what do teens of today have?

To me, these episodes were not controversial. They were two great hours of television entertainment. These episodes predated my access to internet forums and BBS's. Seeing the way the internet rolls today, I can easily believe they would have been a hot topic of discussion among those groups.

DS9 has always been my favourite of the Treks. Exploring the darker side is more than likely the reason. It also didn't delve too far, like say the new Battlestar Galactica. While I did enjoy BSG, I like my shows to swing more in the positive direction.

Edit:

I look forward to watching DS9 again when I've even older. Another twenty years of life experience will likely change the way I look at things in the show.
low-G
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(01-09-2012, 02:57 AM)
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I enjoyed Deep Space 9 when it was new but didn't really bother to go back and watch it again. I am totally going to do just that now.
Kraftwerk
(01-09-2012, 03:01 AM)
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"Dear Doctor" is also one of the most controversial Star Trek episodes, no?
flyover
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(01-09-2012, 03:03 AM)
Thought this was going to be about the Voyager episode where Janeway and Paris evolved into lizards and had millions of babies. But there's really no controversy there, considering that episode NEVER HAPPENED.

I really liked the arc from the DS9 episodes mentioned in the OP. DS9 show wasn't always successful, and it wasn't my favorite ST series, but it was the bravest.
An-Det
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(01-09-2012, 03:09 AM)
I have the feeling that it was episodes like these two that caused my dad to not be a big fan of DS9 compared to the rest. They do show the darker side of the Federation, that it isn't all roses in the 24th century for us despite us trying to be better. When I first saw Section 31, it made sense that we'd have an organization like that too, even if it didn't quite fit the Roddenbury utopia, so I didn't bat an eye. Sisko in 'In the Pale Moonlight' though, to have the main man do shit like that, is an entirely different beast.

Both great episodes in a series that showed a truer, more human reality to the Federation than ever before.
Tobor
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(01-09-2012, 03:20 AM)
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I hated that they retconned Section 31 in as existing the whole time. It should have been started in the aftermath of the failed coup in Season 3, IMO.
Meadows
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(01-09-2012, 03:22 AM)
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hmm, I should get into Star Trek.

I liked Voyager as some casual viewing every now and again back in the day.
Truant
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(01-09-2012, 03:26 AM)
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Thought this was going to be the one where Janeway turns into a seal and then back to human again.
SolKane
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(01-09-2012, 03:34 AM)
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So these weren't some banned or lost episodes that were recently uncovered, it's just two episodes which were kind of dark in tone? Doesn't really seem like a big deal. Then again I'm not a huge Star Trek guy.
teiresias
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(01-09-2012, 03:38 AM)
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I'm going through season 6 right now. I'm watching "Far Beyond the Stars" and heard Cirroc Lofton say the "N"-word, and was like, wow did that just happen?!

DS9 and TNG both have amazing ensembles. I think the DS9 cast had heavier and more substantive material to work with, but as is the general belief, it's easy to see in the chemistry that the TNG cast is probably the only one where everyone actually liked everyone in real life. That definitely bleeds over into the performances.
Escape Goat
(01-09-2012, 03:40 AM)
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Originally Posted by SolKane

So these weren't some banned or lost episodes that were recently uncovered, it's just two episodes which were kind of dark in tone? Doesn't really seem like a big deal. Then again I'm not a huge Star Trek guy.

Controversial in that they are pretty far off Gene Rodenberry's original idea of a utopian society. They aren't controversial as far as testing cultural boundaries. That is to say they are controversial as far as Trek nerds are concerned.
benjipwns
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(01-09-2012, 03:44 AM)
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In terms of controversial outside Star Trek fans and in the general media, DS9's Rejoined might be the most of that series.
Kuro Madoushi
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(01-09-2012, 03:50 AM)
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not controversial, but I liked the eps where picard is a prisoner...there are FOUR lights!!!!

Thinking back, I can't recall any touchy episodes. And this thread is making me wonder...how many years now since the last EPs?
Trent Strong
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(01-09-2012, 03:55 AM)
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Only problem with DS9 is how cheap and ugly the sets were. Voyager looks so much better in comparison. Cardassian architecture, decor and fashion are also uglier than fuck, and since DS9 was a Cardassian facility, you were looking at some really ugly star trek. (Also, seven of nine is hotter than Dax by far.)
Laughing Banana
Weeping Pickle
(01-09-2012, 03:56 AM)
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Say, do the Start Trek franchise ever bothered to explain why all the aliens can speak perfect English? Like maybe the humans had some sort of language-translation implants or something?

Is there any Sci-Fi series out there with aliens speaking with... well, alien-language? Or even bothered to try explaining why English is the language of the entire universe or something?
Zzoram
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(01-09-2012, 04:00 AM)
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Originally Posted by Tobor

I hated that they retconned Section 31 in as existing the whole time. It should have been started in the aftermath of the failed coup in Season 3, IMO.

It makes sense to have Section 31 be there from the beginning though. How else are we to believe the Federation became so successful despite no obvious response to covert actions of agencies such as the Obsidian Order and Tal'Shiar meddling into interstellar affairs? Federation spies had to have been knocking off or turning alien spies.
Zzoram
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(01-09-2012, 04:01 AM)
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Originally Posted by Laughing Banana

Say, do the Start Trek franchise ever bothered to explain why all the aliens can speak perfect English? Like maybe the humans had some sort of language-translation implants or something?

Is there any Sci-Fi series out there with aliens speaking with... well, alien-language? Or even bothered to try explaining why English is the language of the entire universe or something?

Everyone in Star Trek has a universal translator implanted into their ears. They touch on this in the episode where Quark, Rom and Nog crash land in Area 51 after traveling back in time. Their universal translators were damaged in the crash so they couldn't speak to the US military until they fixed it.

In Star Trek Enterprise, they don't have the universal translator so they could only translate incoming transmissions, and had to have an officer with an ear for deciphering patterns to figure out new alien languages for them.

Lots of sci-fi shows have non-English languages spoken, but they all end up using mostly English for practical reasons since a show always being half subtitle wouldn't appeal to audiences.
Biggest-Geek-Ever
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(01-09-2012, 04:05 AM)
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Meh. The Sisko had already poisoned the atmosphere of a planet at this point to capture one Maquis terrorist.
Laughing Banana
Weeping Pickle
(01-09-2012, 04:06 AM)
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Originally Posted by Zzoram

Everyone in Star Trek has a universal translator implanted into their ears. They touch on this in the episode where Quark, Rom and Nog crash land in Area 51 after traveling back in time. Their universal translators were damaged in the crash so they couldn't speak to the US military until they fixed it.

In Star Trek Enterprise, they don't have the universal translator so they could only translate incoming transmissions, and had to have an officer with an ear for deciphering patterns to figure out new alien languages for them.

Lots of sci-fi shows have non-English languages spoken, but they all end up using mostly English for practical reasons since a show always being half subtitle wouldn't appeal to audiences.

Hoh, I don't really pay attention to Star Trek at all, although I had to admit Star Trek: The Next Generation was a rather significant part of my childhood.

Interesting.

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