Star Trek DS9 Season 1: My Top 5 Fave Episodes

As my husband and I are going through our second full watch of Star Trek as a couple, I thought it would be fun to report on the highlights along the way. So I decided to copy the same format as Charlene at Bookish Whimsy, who is going through her first-ever run of Star Trek and sharing her favorite episodes for each season. To compare, see her favorite episodes of season one of Deep Space Nine.

On this rewatch of Star Trek, we’re watching the episodes in the order they were aired, meaning that in the middle of TNG season 6, we started incorporating Deep Space Nine episodes into the mix. It’s been interesting so far to see DS9 with knowledge of what happens; I have had more appreciation for some of these earlier episodes (especially the pilot) and some of the characters that it took me some time to care for (namely Kira, Nog, and Garak). And in case you’re new to my blog, Deep Space Nine is my absolute favorite, so it’s a joy to see the characters again.

I thought I would go ahead and mention two honorable mentions: A Man Alone (for Odo’s speech about compromise in relationships) and Babel (for “simple hesitation!”). Overall, season one really isn’t so bad as some make it out to be. On with the Top 5…

5. Past Prologue

ds9-s1-past-prologue

I decided to put this one in my Top 5 because it’s the first time we see Garak. I actually didn’t like Garak on the first go-around until the episode “The Wire,” but this time I like him and his complicated friendship with Bashir right away.

4. Emissary 

ds9-s1-emissary

I have a lot more appreciation for the pilot now that I’ve seen the whole series. There is a lot of exposition and introductions, and I got a little tired of Sisko trying to explain linear time to the Prophets/wormhole aliens for the 100th time, but overall this pilot was pretty solid. It was definitely a better start to the series than TNG’s pilot. UGH.

3. Captive Pursuit

ds9-s1-captive-pursuit

This is a pretty good O’Brien episode where he befriends an alien from the Gamma quadrant whose whole existence is about being hunted. It definitely raises interesting Prime Directive related questions.

2. If Wishes Were Horses

ds9-s1-ifwisheswerehorses

This is probably surprising to a lot of people, but I really have a fondness for this one. I’ve always shipped Bashir and Dax, so I just love his pining over her at the beginning of the episode, and then to have the “imaginary” Dax throwing herself at him. I remember very specifically from my first watch of DS9 that this was the first episode where I finally felt connected to the characters and decided I would probably would like DS9. I don’t know why, but it is what it is.

1. Duet

ds9-s1-duet

This is an early turning point for Kira, in which she learns she can’t paint all Cardassians with the same stroke. It’s a twisty episode that keeps you guessing and a good episode for DS9 period, not just a “good for season one” episode. It’s non-happy ending is exactly the sort of thing you come to expect from DS9 as well.

What are your favorite episodes of Deep Space Nine season one?

Advertisements

Star Trek TNG Season 6: My Top 5 Fave Episodes

In case you missed it, I did my Top 5 of Season 5 on Tumblr during my hiatus. 

As my husband and I are going through our second full watch of Star Trek as a couple, I thought it would be fun to report on the highlights along the way. So I decided to copy the same format as Charlene at Bookish Whimsy, who is going through her first-ever run of Star Trek and sharing her favorite episodes for each season. To compare, see her top 5 favorite episodes of season six of The Next Generation.

On this rewatch of Star Trek, we’re watching the episodes in the order they were aired, meaning that this season we started incorporating Deep Space Nine. This meant that it took us a longer time to finish season 6 (it feels like ages since I saw the early episodes of the season!), and it also meant that I anticipated Deep Space Nine nights and not TNG nights… oops… That makes me sad because I do love TNG, especially these later seasons, but I just love DS9 so much and have been so happy to see all the characters again. It’s going to be even worse when we’re watching Voyager episodes too… But on my with my favorites of the season! (Note: Tapestry is an honorable mention. Even though I don’t generally like those “It’s A Wonderful Life” plot elements or Q, I do think it’s a worthwhile episode.)

5. A Firstful of Datas

tng6-fistfulofdatas

I don’t particularly care for Lore (or B-4 from Nemesis, shudder), but any other time Brent Spiner gets to deviate from the typical characterization for Data, I’m pretty happy. In this one, something goes haywire and Data is all over the holodeck, but not in typical Data fashion. I also enjoy seeing Troi fitting in well with the Wild West theme of the holodeck program.

4. Starship Mine

tng6-starshipmine

Picard kicks some butt in this episode! It’s nice to see him deviate from his normal behavior, but it still feels like Picard. I’m a little surprised he doesn’t seem more remorseful about killing the baddies, but they were after him! Also noteworthy: Data’s attempt at small talk.

3. Rascals

tng6-rascals

This episode is just plain fun, and the actress who plays younger Guinan seriously NAILS her character role. There is definitely some suspension ofdisbelief in how bad things get on the Enterprise before “children” have to save the day, but still a fun episode nonetheless.

2. Frame of Mind

tng6-frameofmind

This is one of those psychological episodes of TNG that just really surprised me. Riker is playing the role of a character in an insane asylum for a play on the Enterprise, yet also finds himself in an actual insane asylum, being told this he has delusions of life on a starship. My biggest complaint about this episode is that it wasn’t a two-parter that delved deeper into the story, and that none of the ramifications were ever shown.

1. Chain of Command Parts 1 & 2

tng6-chainofcommand

These episodes are just phenomenal; they truly make the psychology minor in me geek out. In fact, I wrote a post a while ago comparing Picard’s torture to the torture in 1984. THERE ARE FOUR LIGHTS!

What are your favorite episodes of TNG season six?

Mini Movie Reviews: Inside Out, Ant-Man, and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

Inside Out

inside-out

I have not been happy with Pixar’s sudden shift from creating brand new, original stories to CRANKING OUT ALL THE SEQUELS, though admittedly, I had also not been happy with their last original offering, Brave. My expectations for Inside Out were cautiously optimistic. Thankfully, I really enjoyed it! The main character, Ryleigh, is about 11 or 12 when her family makes a big move from Minnesota to San Francisco, and I was really able to relate to it with the big moves I’ve made in my life. I really enjoyed all the characters and, as a movie about emotions should do, it gave me all the feels. Definitely recommended.

Ant-Man

ant-man

With Ant-Man, the latest offering of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe (note: do there is a difference between Marvel’s cinematic universe and other Marvel films that are being released like X-Men, the new Fantastic Four, etc.), I was again cautiously optimistic. The marketing department had not done much to convince me this would going to be better than an average superhero movie (because I expect better these days), but I also hoped it was probably going to be pretty good because, well, Marvel Cinematic Universe. Thankfully, it was quite enjoyable, maybe not profound or earth-shattering, but very funny. I think this movie for me is what Guardians of the Galaxy was for a lot of other people, with just a little twist in the typical superhero image and fun. Paul Rudd really sold the show for me. Recommended.

Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

rogue-nation

I like the first MI movie. I kind of liked the second and third ones for a while… and I still think the third one is a pretty strong movie, but man does Phillip Seymour Hoffman chill freak me out in it… but recently I have grown a little less interested in them. Probably because they’re all overshadowed in my mind by the fourth one, Ghost Protocol. Brad Bird did an amazing job with the direction, I liked the addition of Jeremy Renner to the team… I don’t know, it just hit all the right notes for me. It’s got to be one of my favorite action movies. So my hopes were high for Rogue Nation and THEY WERE MET. This movie was twisty and left me guessing constantly. This is definitely going to be one I will want to watch over and over again like Ghost Protocol. Highly recommended!

Have you seen any of these movies yet? What are your thoughts?

Highs & Lows (A Post About Life)

This past Friday, I attended a concert that featured my two favorite bands, Swicthfoot and Needtobreathe. I cannot begin to explain the depth of my excitement when I found out that they were (1) touring together, (2) coming to Nashville, but if you imagine it was your two favorite artists coming to your town then I’m sure you can understand.

Some highlights of the show included all the guys of Switchfoot gathering around one mic to test the acoustics of the new venue the show was in to sing “Hello Hurricane,” and the opening acts + Switchfoot + Needtobreathe all on stage near the end singing Needtobreathe’s “Brother” together. Not to mention how inspired I always feel when I see Switchfoot (which has been more times than I remember), and how engulfed I felt in the moment when Needtobreathe performed “Multiplied.” I enjoyed both of the opening acts as well, Colony House and Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors, but especially the former. I look forward to more of them in the future.

That low came on Sunday.

I was turning left onto a busy street that I have turned left onto a hundred times before. I thought it was all clear. It wasn’t.

I’ve been in accidents before, but not like this, where my airbags deployed, paramedics came, and my car got towed away.

My car that I love and haven’t had all that long.

But I am OK. I did get a little bruised and banged up, thanks to the airbags (I’ll just assume it would have been worse without them though and be glad my car kept me safe), but I didn’t need to go to the hospital or anything, and the other driver was fine too.

There were some witnesses to the accident that were so kind to me. One of them even went and got me one of those big bottles of SmartWater, which I will never forget and I am so thankful for, because it was hot and I drank most of it standing out there! I’m also thankful I got off with a warning citation instead of a ticket.

I had some family friends who saw the accident and came back to get my groceries home for me, while I waited for my mom and husband. That evening some friends came over with pizza and to just hang out for a while. It was a nice way to end an otherwise not great day.

It’s just amazing what all can happen in such a short period of time, from highs to lows.

When have you experienced a high and then a low in a short period of time? 

Mini Reviews: The Contemporary Edition

I have been reading a lot more YA contemporary lately, and wanted to share my thoughts on my four most recent contemporary reads.

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

gr-distancebetween

I know this will mean nothing to most of you who read through your books much faster than I do, but I read this book in two days. It was just a fun, quick, easy read. It didn’t change my life and I had a couple minor issues with it, but overall I just really enjoyed getting to know Caymen and Xander and watching them interact. It was definitely worth the $1.99 I spent on it!

Rating: 4 stars

Content Advisory: Pretty clean. I don’t recall any language; some kissing.

The Last Time We Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

gr-thelasttime

Believe it or not, this is probably actually the first really heavy issue book I’ve read, at least in the YA contemporary genre. I was hooked right away with Alexis’ voice as she wrote in a journal provided to her by her therapist, bemoaning the idea of writing out her feelings and comparing it to bleeding out with leeches. But the book definitely gets heavy, with Alexis constantly wishing she could go back and change the night she found out her brother killed himself, trying to deal with her mom and others in her life, and worrying that she is seeing the ghost of her brother. The ending was very emotionally satisfying, and I’m very glad I read this book to gain more insight about the aftermath of a suicide.

Rating: 4 stars (If I gave quarter stars it would be 4.25. I know that sounds ridiculous but it’s just not quite to 4.5, but almost!)

Content Advisory: Moderate language; some kissing.

The Unlikely Hero of Room 13 B by Teresa Toten

gr-unlikelyhero

I impulsively borrowed this from the library because I knew it focused on characters with OCD, and there are secondary characters in my WIP with OCD. This was a very interesting read for me; there were many things I liked but many I wasn’t crazy about as well. First, despite the fact that he struggles with OCD at a level I doubt I will ever understand, Adam is the most realistic character in this book, aside from maybe his stepmother and neighbor. His dad, therapist, Father Rick, Ben, and the other OCD kids felt real sometimes, and Sweetie and Adam’s mom NEVER felt real. (Sweetie is for real the strangest 5 year old ever. I don’t think a single kid on the planet talks like that.) Sometimes the characters and the dialogue took me out of the book (Adam and some of the kids constantly say stuff like, “That’s superior!” and other things I have just never heard anyone ever say).

Yet the book is quirky and full of humor, and I really did feel empathy for Adam. I enjoyed Robyn too and enjoyed their friendship-turned-relationship. And also yet again, this book was often awkward and hard to read, which I think was part of the point, because these characters are struggling with very real issues and disorders and it does hurt, but the added layer of Adam’s mom’s craziness was sometimes too much for me to bear. The ending was very unsatisfying as there is very little finality, but I know that doesn’t bother everyone, and it doesn’t always bother me, but I didn’t feel I got the full arc from Adam that I wanted, though we do see it going in that direction.

Rating: 3 or 3.5 stars (I really can’t decide.)

Content advisory: Moderate language; some kissing.

The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

gr-thestartofyouandme

I saved my favorite of the bunch for last. I mean, where do I even begin?! I ADORED Max. I loved him so much at first I couldn’t properly ship him and Paige because I didn’t think Paige deserved him. But when she starts to come around and really understand her feelings towards him, I felt for her and definitely got all aboard their ship! The last chapter was such perfection that I can’t even. I LOVED all the nerdy banter and just about everything really. The friendships were so spot-on!

My only complaint about the book really is at Max’s birthday party when they played Spin the Bottle and I was like, really?, but even the characters knew it was juvenile, and it was what gave Paige the push she needed to confront her feelings.

So seriously, READ THIS. I have never loved a YA contemporary to this degree.

[Side note: I’m terrified of Open Road Summer because the characters don’t sound as likable and this book was so perfect for me, but I think I’ll definitely be keeping my eyes open for future Emery Lord books.]

Rating: 5 stars!!! (I borrowed this from the library and then immediately ordered the hardcover from Amazon because I LOVED IT THAT MUCH.)

Content advisory: Sporadic and mostly mild swearing (though I believe there was one f word).

Have you read any of these? What are your thoughts?

Why You Should Watch Deep Space Nine if You Love Mistborn, & Vice Versa

As I was reading The Hero of Ages (which I’ll attempt to review in the not-too-distant future, but how can I even?!), I suddenly became struck with the similarities between the Mistborn books and my favorite TV show, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. On the surface, it can be hard to miss. Mistborn is a fantasy set in a made-up world, and there are people who are able to draw powers from metals. Deep Space Nine is science fiction, set on a space station that is next to made-up worlds, but many characters come from Earth and none of them have special powers, though there are aliens who have unique abilities. And yet, I found some themes in both that I could not ignore the similarities between, and I feel that if you enjoyed them in one of these stories, you’ll enjoy them in the other.

Overall Character & Story Arcs

Before we get into the common themes, I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that both Mistborn and DS9 have strong arcs for a wide variety of characters and for the story as a whole. Garak, who is in only 37 episodes of DS9, is a fan favorite who plays a significant role in the show. Nog, who is only in 47 episodes, starts off in DS9 as an annoying kid and ends up with a profound character arc, and there’s even an episode dedicated to him in the seventh season.

In a similar fashion, while the trilogy mostly focuses on Vin, Elend, and Sazed, and there are important secondaries such as Breeze, Ham, etc., and there are characters who are present in one or two of the previous books who go through big changes in the final book, such as TenSoon and Spook.

Religion/Religious Icons Theme

In both DS9 and Mistborn, there is a definite theme of religion and religious icons. Deep Space Nine focuses on the faith of the Bajorian people; we are introduced to leaders of their faith and see how different they can be from one another, and Sisko, an outsider, is revered as their “emissary,” a religious icon.

In Mistborn, all religion died under the Lord Ruler, save for his. After he is overthrown, the Church of the Survivor is born, turning characters into religious icons, and in the end of the trilogy, without giving away too much, I’ll just say we see this really manifest, in a way much like it did in the Deep Space Nine finale.

mistborn-art

Source

Shades of Gray, Particularly in War

Both DS9 and Mistborn also explore what it means to be a good man or woman, yet to have to also make tough decisions, to possibly kill, and to do things in war that you would normally not approve of. When I was reading The Hero of Ages and Elend struggled with decisions he made, I thought, wow, this is reminding me of In The Pale Moonlight. The season 6 episode of DS9 is one of my favorite in Star Trek, and I can’t imagine a fan of Mistborn not loving this episode, because it really explores the dark underbelly of the good guys.

Bittersweet End

 Both of these endings will give you feels, both sad and sweet. They close some chapters but open up new beginnings and possibilities for many characters and really for the world the story is set in.

ds9-montage

So seriously, if you’re a fan of one, you should really look into the other. They’re obviously different mediums, but both are fantastic stories. Deep Space Nine will not start off like Mistborn; it might even seem silly or just kind of OK to you at first, but I promise if you stick with it you’ll see all the things I’ve mentioned. And Mistborn is a slow burn of a book, taking its time to tell the story, but none of it feels unnecessary. Brandon Sanderson masterfully weaved together all the threads throughout the three books and leaves you without any confusion.

Are you a fan of one, or both, of these stories? 

The Top 3 Fairytales I Want to See Retold

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Ten Fairytale Retellings I’ve Read/Want To Read (or fairytales I want to be retold or fairytales I love). So the only fairytale retellings that I have read that I can think of are The Lunar Chronicles (which I love) and Tiger Lily (which I sadly don’t love), and I don’t have a strong interest in any others at the moment. Here are just a few fairy tale retellings that I think could be interesting.

1. Alice in Wonderland, with Parallel Universes

alice-parallel

Photo source

I actually mentioned this idea once before, and I really would love to write this idea myself if I had any idea what to do with other than the basic premise. Maybe one day I’ll have the inspiration…

2. The Princess and the Pea, Modernized

princessandthepea-mod

Photo source

I have zero idea how to make this work, but it’s a common fairy tale that I am not familiar with having a retelling yet.

3. Snow White and Rose Red

snow-white-rose-red2

Photo soruce

 I wasn’t even familiar with this fairy tale of two sisters until Annie mentioned it on her blog, and I still don’t really know it, but it sounds intriguing and I think I would be interested in a retelling of it.

Which fairytales would you like to see retold?

Why Hello

whale-hello

As it is now August, I suppose I ought to make good on my promise to return from hiatus. I have to admit, I haven’t missed blogging too much while I was away. Sometimes I kind of wanted to write a post, but I was fine with waiting or posting it on my Tumblr (I did two Top Ten Tuesdays there as well as my TNG season 5 recap). I do have a few new post ideas, though only one partially written (whoops), but I will probably keep my posting light going forward as I have decided:

1.) I definitely want to keep my fiction writing as a top priority, and…

2.) I have decided I’m not going to try to keep as a “big” blog.

I really enjoyed growing in subscribers and comments, coming up with different content, but then I felt I plateaued and stagnated. I figured this hiatus would help me determine if I was ready to come back into this full force and try to make this blog bigger and better, or if I would just be content with it as an outlet when I wanted to say something for whoever wanted to read it. And I have decided on the latter.

I am definitely grateful for all my readers and appreciated the comments several of you left on my hiatus post. I hope you will stick around for whatever I may bring.

Here are the posts I do intend to write sometime in the next month…

– Bookish Wedding Inspiration: The Start of Me & You (I’ve gathered a few pictures for this and still have a way’s to go, but I’m REALLY excited about this one!)

– Why You Should Watch Deep Space Nine If You Love Mistborn (& Vice Versa) (This is the one I’ve started writing and I think it’ll be interesting!)

– Mini movie reviews for Inside Out, Ant-Man, and Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

– Mini book reviews (I haven’t decided how many of the books I will be reviewing from what I read over my hiatus, but I read several good ones!)

So… how’s it going, everyone?!