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In the Pale Moonlight DS9 #141

Darkness Beyond the Pale of Star Trek

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Garak Struts His Stuff, Romulans & Dominion Beware

  • Oct 6, 2010
Rating:
+5
The story?

The trouble with Deep Space Nine is that there are so many very good episodes it is difficult to select the best.  In the Pale Moonlight unquestionably ranks as in the running for that honor.  This is the story of a star fleet officer on the road to hell.  Since it is told in flashbacks we learn what he thinks after he has arrived.

One reviewer said, "Disquieting, but a spellbinding tour de force. It's a gripping, scary, and inevitably chilling tale ... I'm calling it a DS9 masterpiece."

How much did you see your favorite character?

Plain and simple Garak is prominent in this episode.  To a significant degree the tailor stitched together this entire plot.  Garak comes up with the idea of faking the "evidence" and then takes the necessary action to accomplish the ultimate goal without telling Sisko.  Never trust a Cardassian tailor.  Their sense of taste is as dark as obsidian.

Was the antagonist strong?  Evil?

Who was the antagonist in this episode?  Was it senator Vreenak?  Was it Quark?  Was it Dr. Bashir?  Was it really Garak?  But Garak is the hero of the piece.  Was it the Dominion?  Maybe it was just the crucible of war because that is really the point this episode makes.  War is HELL!

This story is told in flashbacks where Benjamin Sisko attempts to explain his actions to himself.  The war with the Dominion is going badly and every Friday Ben must post the Federation casualties and ships lost due to the war.  He hates Fridays.

Everyone thinks things would be so much better if the Romulans would join the fight on the side of the Federation.  So Sisko decides to bring them in.  His first step is to enlist the aid of plain and simple Garak.  If anyone knows the route to Hell it is certainly the Cardassian tailor.  Most likely the shortcuts too.  The first thing they try is Garak's contacts on Cardassia.  But they are all immediately killed.  What is interesting is how little this seems to bother Garak.  It is as though it was just an annoying cost of doing business.  But later one has to wonder.  Did Garak really contact anyone on Cardassia or did he just tell that to Sisko to further his REAL PLAN?  Am I getting paranoid about Cardassians?  Garak is definitely a bad influence.

Well the first step to the REAL PLAN is to lie to a Romulan Senator to get him to believe the Dominion is planning to double-cross the Romulan Empire.  This involves faking data on genuine Cardassian technology.  But getting that meant ordering Bashir to provide illegal genetic gel and Julian objected.  You just have to slap down these pipsqueak doctors or they start getting uppity.  But then they need a criminal artist to fake the data.  But he stabs Quark who almost certainly deserved it.  For the captain of the station to have to bribe a Ferengi just had to be truly galling.  NO, to hell with the Federation.  I'll stab the Ferengi schmuck myself.  LOL

But ultimately the sneaky Garak double-crosses Sisko and the captain beats the crap out of him.  But the curious thing is you just know Garak let it happen.  Undoubtedly if Garak wanted to kill Sisko or stun him in his own shop he probably had the means available.  Garak knows he has lots of enemies that would love to do him in.  But he lets Sisko get it out of his system.  All in all it was a good week's work for Mr Garak.  He probably only killed six people.  The senator had four body guards and you don't stab Garak's buddy Quark and expect to get away with it.

Live long and prosper!  But don't cross a Cardassian tailor or a stitch in time is all you will get.

When I grow up I want to be Elim Garak.

This is a nice funny video review but it contains too many spoilers.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pQiZcOpBLME

This is about the Star Trek controversy over this episode.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-RRMV6iba0
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Garak Struts His Stuff, Romulans & Dominion Beware

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October 20, 2010
Now this is very interesting.  I deliberately waited two weeks to respond.

Now I have written 8 reviews on 9 Star Trek episode and every review has gotten a response within a day or two if not in minutes.  All except THIS ONE.

I have seen this described as the most controversial Trek episode and I have heard some Trekkies don't like Deep Space Nine.  I am not a Star Trek fan.  I am a science fiction fan and I think DS9 is the best of the Trek series.  So does this episode conform to Gene Roddenberry's vision.  I don't care.  The Next Generation was too namby pamby, goody two shoes, butter wouldn't melt in its mouth.  Sometimes it made me want to puke.  I was ready to slap Picard up side his bald head.

Great bird of the galaxy my foot.  DS9 was closer to REAL SCIENCE FICTION.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-RRMV6iba0

He goes off on nonsense talking about Republicans but tries to justify not conforming to Roddenberry's vision.  Who cars about Roddenberry's vision.  Give us some good sci-fi.  Stealing the DS9 concept from Babylon 5 didn't conform either.  LOL

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KMbAp3JjQQQ

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Du22j3HpFSc
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Wiki

Elim Garak is a fictional character in the television series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, in which he is portrayed by Andrew J. Robinson. In the series, Garak is an exiled spy from the Cardassian nation and a former member of a prestigious Cardassian intelligence group called the Obsidian Order. Garak was exiled (for unspecified reasons) to the space station that became known as Deep Space Nine and established a tailoring business there.

Garak is introduced in the third episode of the first season of Deep Space Nine "Past Prologue" (after the double episode "Emissary"). In the episode, he appears in the replimat on Deep Space Nine, where he flirtatiously[1] introduces himself simply as "Garak", a tailor exiled from Cardassia, to the station's discomforted doctor, Julian Bashir. In the same episode, it is discovered that Garak was simply known as "The Spy" to the crew of Deep Space Nine, being the only Cardassian left on the station after Cardassia withdrew their occupation from the nearby planet Bajor.

Over the course of the series, Garak at first denies involvement with a feared Cardassian intelligence agency called the Obsidian Order, only to later reveal his connections as he (as plot-development devices) deems necessary. As Garak's friendship with Bashir develops, it is revealed that he was one of the Obsidian Order's highest ranking operatives, and that he was exiled from Cardassia due to unspecified reasons. The ...

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