Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land August 20, 2014 Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land Ruthanna Emrys Stories of Tikanu. Hero of the Five Points August 19, 2014 Hero of the Five Points Alan Gratz A League of Seven story. La Signora August 13, 2014 La Signora Bruce McAllister If love is not enough, then maybe death... Sleeper August 12, 2014 Sleeper Jo Walton It is best to embrace subjectivity.
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August 15, 2014
“Perhaps It Was Only an Echo”: The Giver
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We’re Holding Out for a (New) Hero: How Heroes and Villains are Evolving
Leah Schnelbach
August 14, 2014
Doctor Who: “Deep Breath” (Non-spoiler Review)
Chris Lough
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Eight Essential Science Fiction Detective Mash-Ups
David Cranmer
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Robin Williams Taught Us the Joy of Being Weird
Stubby the Rocket
Showing posts by: Keith DeCandido click to see Keith DeCandido's profile
Tue
Aug 19 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Behind the Lines”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Behind the Lines“Behind the Lines”
Written by Rene Echevarria
Directed by LeVar Burton
Season 6, Episode 4
Production number 40510-528
Original air date: October 20, 1997
Stardate: 51145.3

Station log: Sisko is back on the Defiant, and they’ve been conducting raids on Dominion territory, trying in vain to turn the tide of the war. Every time a power cell from the phaser array wears out, Sisko places it in the mess hall alongside the other exhausted power cells after giving a speech about the character of the crew and how they’ll fight to the end.

Ross then arrives to inform Sisko of new intelligence that explains why the Dominion has had such an advantage: they have a massive sensor array in the Argolis Cluster that can detect ship movements as far as five sectors away. Sisko’s next assignment is to construct a battle plan that will take it out.

[I just shared a bottle of kanar with Damar. Hey, that rhymes!]

Fri
Aug 15 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Sons and Daughters”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Sons and Daughters“Sons and Daughters”
Written by Bradley Thompson & David Weddle
Directed by Jesús Salvador Treviño
Season 6, Episode 3
Production number 40510-526
Original air date: October 16, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: The I.K.S. Rotarran has rescued the away team (and presumably the prisoner Keevan) from the dark-matter nebula and returned to Starbase 375. Bashir and O’Brien are grateful to be off the Klingon ship with its Klingon food and Klingon singing to all hours of the night, while Worf and Dax are grateful for some alone time.

The Rotarran then continues to a rendezvous with the Vor’nak, taking on crew replacements—one of whom is Worf’s son Alexander. Worf had no idea that Alexander had even enlisted. Alexander identifies himself only as Alexander Rozhenko, saying he has no House. So, y’know, obviously some bitterness.

[Or perhaps the son of our illustrious first officer would prefer an Earth beverage? A glass of root beer with a lump of ice cream?]

Tue
Aug 12 2014 3:30pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Rocks and Shoals”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Rocks and Shoals“Rocks and Shoals"
Written by Ronald D. Moore
Directed by Michael Vejar
Season 6, Episode 2
Production number 40510-527
Original air date: October 6, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log. Sisko and the gang on their commandeered Dominion ship are fired upon by two Dominion ships that have actual Jem’Hadar on them. O’Brien still hasn’t been able to restore main power, but now they have to escape their pursuit. Sisko finds a dark matter nebula nearby, and they head toward it—but then the helm console explodes, injuring Dax. They plunge into the nebula, crashing onto a planet. The Jem’Hadar break off as soon as they enter the nebula, probably realizing that they were going to crash.

However, they’re not the only ones on that world. Another Jem’Hadar regiment crashed on the planet as well. Their Vorta, Keevan, is very badly hurt, their communications equipment is fried, and the First and Second are dead, leaving Third Remata’klan in charge of the Jem’Hadar—though Keevan refuses to promote him to First, as he questioned the Vorta’s orders to enter the nebula in the first place. Fourth Limara’son thinks Remata’klan was right to question Keevan, as it was entering this nebula that led to their crash, but Remata’klan says that the Vorta was correct to upbraid him. Only through obedience will one achieve victory, and victory is life. Cha cha cha.

[Evil must be opposed!]

Fri
Aug 8 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “A Time to Stand”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: A Time to Stand“A Time to Stand”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Allan Kroeker
Season 6, Episode 1
Production number 40510-525
Original air date: September 29, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: We get a summary of “Call to Arms,” and then pick up with a huge convoy of Starfleet and Klingon ships that have gotten their asses well and truly kicked. The three months since they abandoned DS9 have been spent in a constant state of defeat—attack, get their asses kicked, regroup. To make matters worse, the Seventh Fleet was massacred at the Tyra system, losing all but 14 of the 112 ships in the fleet to the Dominion. Tensions are high, and morale is in the toilet.

[It's been a week since I poisoned anybody]

Tue
Aug 5 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Fifth Season Overview

Deep Space Nine rewatch on Tor.com: Fifth Season overviewStar Trek: Deep Space Nine Fifth Season
Original air dates: October 1996 – June 1997
Executive Producer: Rick Berman
Executive Producer: Ira Steven Behr

Station log: At the start of season 5, the Cardassian Union is in a shambles, the Klingons are at war with both Cardassia and the Federation, Bajor is on the verge of joining the Federation, Odo is a solid, the Maquis are a growing threat, Dukat is waging a one-Cardassian war on the Klingon Empire with a stolen Bird-of-Prey, Worf and Dax are both single, Bashir is dating Leeta, the O’Briens have only one child, and Quark is still on the Ferengi Commerce Authority’s blacklist. Plus the characters of Enabran Tain, Enrique Muniz, Tekeny Ghemor, Michael Eddington, Furel, and Lupaza are all alive.

By the end of season 5, none of those things are true.

[I cannot defeat this Klingon. All I can do is kill him, and that no longer holds my interest. ]

Fri
Aug 1 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Call to Arms”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Call to Arms“Call to Arms”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Robert Hewitt Wolfe
Directed by Allan Kroeker
Season 5, Episode 26
Production episode 40510-524
Original air date: June 16, 1997
Stardate: 50975.2

Station log: Rom and Leeta are having trouble picking out a wedding dress, as they can’t agree on any of the 150 that Garak shows them—and the wedding’s in two weeks. Ziyal suggests that Garak design a dress for her instead. They interrupt this argument to approach Sisko about marrying them, to which the Emissary agrees.

The Dominion has been sending regular convoys through the wormhole. War seems imminent, to the point that Keiko, Molly, and Kirayoshi are visiting family on Earth (O’Brien misses them horribly, but it’s for the best), and Sisko wishes he could convince Jake to do likewise.

[Here, in this place where I belong.]

Tue
Jul 29 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “In the Cards”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: In the Cards“In the Cards”
Written by Truly Barr Clark & Scott Neal and Ronald D. Moore
Directed by Michael Dorn
Season 5, Episode 25
Production episode 40510-523
Original air date: June 9, 1997
Stardate: 50929.4

Station log: Dinner at the Sisko cabin is a morbid affair. The U.S.S. Tian An Men has gone missing, the latest in a series of ships to disappear near the Cardassian border. Sisko’s attempts to change the subject are an abject failure. The mood is oppressive and awkward and depressing and maudlin, and the cherry on top of the whole thing: after everyone leaves, Sisko is informed that Winn is coming to the station in the morning.

Jake, meanwhile, is worried about his father. Usually the captain is the one who cheers everyone up when they’re down, but he’s just as worried about the Dominion as everyone else.

[Maybe the soulless minions of orthodoxy finally caught up with him.]

Fri
Jul 25 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Empok Nor”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Empok Nor“Empok Nor”
Written by Bryan Fuller and Hans Beimler
Directed by Mike Vejar
Season 5, Episode 24
Production episode 40510-522
Original air date: May 19, 1997
Stardate: 50901.7

Station log: O’Brien and Nog are working on repairing a conduit, using tools that are sufficiently loud that it’s driving business away from Quark’s. (Kira, Dax, and Worf take all of three seconds’ worth of noise to decide to go to the Klingon restaurant instead.) Unfortunately, the problem is worse than O’Brien thought. They need to replace the plasma manifolds, which can’t be replicated, and relations with Cardassia these days preclude the notion of acquiring spares from them.

O’Brien leads a salvage team to Empok Nor, a station of the same design as Deep Space 9 (formerly Terok Nor) in the Trivas system, a sector that the Cardassians abandoned a year ago and have shown no interest in reacquiring since they became part of the Dominion. Odo warns of booby traps geared toward non-Cardassians, so Sisko convinces Garak to go along. The rest of the team includes Nog, two engineers (Pechetti and Boq’ta) and two security guards (Stolzoff and Amaro).

[“I can’t believe I let you talk me into volunteering for this.” “Beats working on the waste extraction system.”]

Tue
Jul 22 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Blaze of Glory”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Blaze of Glory“Blaze of Glory”
Written by Robert Hewitt Wolfe & Ira Steven Behr
Directed by Kim Friedman
Season 5, Episode 23
Production episode 40510-521
Original air date: May 12, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Nog is over for dinner at the Siskos, where they’re eating squid in a sauce made of pureed tube grubs. (Jake loves it right up until he hears what the sauce is.) Nog is currently on a security rotation, and he’s not happy at how Klingons aren’t taking him seriously, or even acknowledging him.

Martok reports to Sisko with a coded message from the Maquis—a bit of a surprise, since the Maquis were believed to be wiped out by the Dominion after they absorbed Cardassia. The message is for “Michael,” saying the missiles are en route to Cardassia. Martok reveals that the Klingons provided the Maquis with cloaking devices, which they could have used on the missiles themselves. Sisko and Martok fear that such a strike by humans will result in retaliation against the Federation.

[“And that’s when he hit you with the barstool and ran out onto the Promenade screaming ‘We’re all doomed’.” “Some people just don’t react well to stress.”]

Fri
Jul 18 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Children of Time”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Children of Time“Children of Time”
Written by Gary Holland and Ethan H. Calk and Rene Echevarria
Directed by Allan Kroeker
Season 5, Episode 22
Production episode 40510-520
Original air date: May 5, 1997
Stardate: 50814.2

Station log: The Defiant is en route home following a week-long reconnaissance mission in the Gamma Quadrant. Dax, Kira, and Odo are talking in the mess hall and Kira reveals that she and Shakaar broke up a week earlier, which is news that hits Odo pretty hard on several levels.

Dax discovers a planet that has a strange energy field around it, but also the possibility of life signs. After a week in the GQ everyone wants to go home, but Dax talks Sisko into a quick survey. However, the field has an adverse effect on the ship, sending a massive shock through Kira, and damaging the ship enough that they’re not going to be able to move for a couple of days. Everyone’s a little peeved at Dax, but then Worf reveals that they’re being hailed by a settlement of about 8000 people, who appear to be mostly human—which is odd in the GQ.

[“If all we detect is some fungus, we’re not beaming down.” “What if it’s smart fungus?”]

Tue
Jul 15 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Soldiers of the Empire”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Soldiers of the Empire“Soldiers of the Empire”
Written by Ronald D. Moore
Directed by LeVar Burton
Season 5, Episode 21
Production episode 40510-519
Original air date: April 29, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Martok is being treated for a training injury. Bashir lectures him on the subject of not accepting that he has a disability (to wit, his missing eye; he won’t get an ocular implant, either) and of turning the safeties off when he practices in the holosuite. He then gets a call from the High Council: they want him to take command of the I.K.S. Rotarran, a Bird-of-Prey, to rescue the I.K.S. B’Moth, which disappeared three days ago while patrolling the Cardassian border.

Martok goes to the Defiant to tell Worf about the mission and to ask him to serve at Martok’s side as his first officer. (We also find out that his shoulder injury wasn’t from a holosuite exercise, but rather him and Worf sparring. Marotk lied to Bashir because humans wouldn’t understand the need for personal combat with edged weapons as training.)

[If you really want to thank me, don’t walk in here dripping blood anymore. It takes days to get it out of the carpet!]

Fri
Jul 11 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Ferengi Love Songs”

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Ferengi Love Songs“Ferengi Love Songs”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler
Directed by Rene Auberjonois
Season 5, Episode 20
Production episode 40510-518
Original air date: April 21, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Quark’s has been closed for three days due to a vole infestation. He’s miserable, and Rom’s attempt to cheer him up with the news that he and Leeta are getting married is an abject failure. Rom suggests he go home to Ferenginar to be with his moogie.

Against all odds, Quark actually takes this advice, travelling home to a very surprised Ishka. She doesn’t seem entirely thrilled to find Quark there, but while she says it’s because they’ve never gotten along all that well, there’s another reason, as Quark learns when he goes to his room and sees Grand Nagus Zek and Maihar’du in his closet. At first, Quark runs from the room scared, because Zek says he shouldn’t be on Ferenginar because of his FCA ban, and it takes him until he runs to the living room before he realizes that, well, the grand nagus is hiding in his closet.

[“What are you doing in my closet?” “Conducting official FCA business.” “In my closet?”]

Tue
Jul 8 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Ties of Blood and Water”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Ties of Blood and Water“Ties of Blood and Water”
Written by Edmund Newton & Robbin L. Slocum and Robert Hewitt Wolfe
Directed by Avery Brooks
Season 5, Episode 19
Production episode 40510-517
Original air date: April 14, 1997
Stardate: 50712.5

Station log: Kira, Worf, and Dax welcome Tekeny Ghemor back to the station. With the Dominion having absorbed Cardassia, and with Ghemor’s history with the dissident movement that overthrew Central Command, he’s the best choice to lead the opposition to the new Dominion government. Unfortunately, Ghemor can’t do it because he’s terminally ill. He’s accepted that he’ll never see his daughter again (Kira says Bajoran Security is still looking for Iliana, but they haven’t found her yet), and he can’t lead a Cardassian government in exile. Bashir confirms the diagnosis, and has some treatments that might help, though nothing that will cure him.

Dukat contacts Sisko, demanding that Ghemor be returned to them. Since the Federation doesn’t recognize the current Cardassian government, and there are no extradition treaties between Cardassia and either the Federation or Bajor, Sisko smiles and says that Dukat shouldn’t get his hopes up before hanging up on him.

[Oh, my, that is quite toxic, isn’t it?]

Wed
Jul 2 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Business as Usual”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Business as Usual“Business as Usual”
Written by Bradley Thompson & David Weddle
Directed by Siddig el-Fadil
Season 5, Episode 18
Production episode 40510-516
Original air date: April 5, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Quark is distracted from his tongo game with Dax because he’s been completely financially wiped out. He made three investments, and they all crapped out, leaving him broke. Then, to add insult to injury, his cousin Gaila shows up—but he has an offer. He wants Quark to join him in his weapons business, doing what he does best: show the customers a good time, and also use the holosuites to demo the weapons without ever actually bringing them onto the station (thus avoiding the long arm of the law). Gaila offers five percent, and Quark sees the actual figures, and realizes that even that small a percentage will wipe out his debt in no time. After a few months, the FCA will be begging Quark to be reinstated.

Having no real choice, Quark says yes.

[Works for me!]

Fri
Jun 27 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “A Simple Investigation”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: A Simple Investigation“A Simple Investigation”
Written by Rene Echevarria
Directed by John Kretchmer
Season 5, Episode 17
Production episode 40510-515
Original air date: March 31, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: An Idanian is assaulted in his guest quarters by two Finneans, Sorm and Traidy. When he pulls a weapon on the pair, Sorm vaporizes him. He’s regretful, as he thought it was on stun, and now they have to wait for the woman the Idanian was supposed to meet in order to get the item.

Odo sees a woman in Quark’s named Arissa. She gets rid of Quark by telling him about someone cheating at dabo. Odo is impressed with her observational capacity. She mistakes his words for flirting, and then she flirts a bit back at him.

[You shouldn’t stop for hitchhikers...]

Tue
Jun 24 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Doctor Bashir, I Presume?”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Doctor Bashir, I Presume?“Doctor Bashir, I Presume?”
Written by Jimmy Diggs and Ronald D. Moore
Directed by David Livingston
Season 5, Episode 16
Production episode 40510-514
Original air date: February 24, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Rom has spent the last several weeks trying to work up the courage to ask Leeta out. He has failed. Leeta is starting to think he isn’t interested, and Quark encourages that notion, as he knows that Rom will never actually ask her out. Quark insists that his brother wants someone with brains and a body, and when Leeta insists that she has brains, Quark snidely says that’s why he hired her, and then tells her to get back to work so everyone can see her brains.

Bashir and O’Brien’s darts game is interrupted by Dr. Lewis Zimmerman of the holographic imaging and research center on Jupiter Station. He’s the one who developed the Emergency Medical Hologram—and patterned it after himself—and now is developing a Long-Term Medical Hologram. The LMH’s purpose is to be used in research outposts, subspace relays, and other places where life-support and/or space is at a premium and the chief medical officer wouldn’t generally need to leave sickbay.

[Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaait!]

Fri
Jun 20 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “By Inferno’s Light”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: By Inferno’s Light“By Inferno’s Light”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Robert Hewitt Wolfe
Directed by Les Landau
Season 5, Episode 15
Production episode 40510-513
Original air date: February 17, 1997
Stardate: 50564.2

Station log: We get a précis of “In Purgatory’s Shadow,” then see Kira take command of the Defiant. Along with the remaining two runabouts and Dukat’s Bird-of-Prey, they get ready to defend the station. But then the Jem’Hadar fleet changes course away from the station and toward Cardassia. Dukat breaks formation and goes after the fleet—but, as he reveals in a communication with Kira, not to attack it, but to join it. Dukat reveals that he’s been engaged in secret negotiations with the Dominion for months, and now Cardassia is part of the Dominion.

In the prison camp, Bashir and Martok show Worf and Garak where the life-support system that Tain modified is. It’s accessible via a wall panel next to Tain’s bunk, a very tight space. Worf’s plan is to modify Tain’s juryrigged transmitter to send a signal to the runabout and beam them to it. But Garak’s the only one with the expertise to do the work.

[“I think they’re trying to intimidate us.” “It’s working.”]

Tue
Jun 17 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “In Purgatory’s Shadow”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: In Purgatory’s Shadow“In Purgatory’s Shadow”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Robert Hewitt Wolfe
Directed by Gabrielle Beaumont
Season 5, Episode 14
Production episode 40510-512
Original air date: February 10, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: A Gamma Quadrant listening post has picked up a coded Cardassian message. Neither Odo nor Kira are able to decode it, and they’ve sent it along to Bajoran intelligence, but Odo suggests they ask Garak to take a whack at it.

However, Garak disappoints them by telling them that it’s an old planetary survey from five years ago. He excuses himself from lunch with Bashir and Ziyal to allegedly work in his shop. Instead, he packs a bag and tries to steal a runabout—only to find Bashir in the runabout aiming a phaser at him and pointedly asking him, “Going somewhere?”

[Have a glorious death. Or don’t. It’s up to you.]

Fri
Jun 13 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “For the Uniform”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: For the Uniform“For the Uniform”
Written by Peter Allan Fields
Directed by Victor Lobl
Season 5, Episode 13
Production episode 40510-511
Original air date: February 3, 1997
Stardate: 50485.2

Station log: Sisko goes to Marva IV, a Maquis colony, to meet with a contact who has information about Eddington’s whereabouts. Instead, he’s confronted by Eddington. The Maquis learned of the informant and trapped him on a planet in the Badlands for his trouble. Eddington shows Sisko the refugees from a Federation colony ceded to the Cardassians. Sisko points out that they were offered resettlement, but Eddington says they don’t want that, they want to go home. Sisko points out that that dream of going back home is pretty much dead, and these people are living in caves because they believe the Maquis party line.

Eddington says his quarrel is with the Cardassians, not the Federation, and to leave them alone. He beams away to a raider, and Sisko beams back to the Defiant and follows him, asking for assistance from the U.S.S. Malinche, nearby patrolling the DMZ.

[He worked under me for a year and a half. I saw him almost every day. Read his reports. Had him to dinner. I even took him to a baseball game in the holosuite once. And I never saw it!]

Wed
Jun 11 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “The Begotten”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: The Begotten“The Begotten”
Written by René Echevarria
Directed by Jesús Salvador Treviño
Season 5, Episode 12
Production episode 40510-510
Original air date: January 27, 1997
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Odo limps into the infirmary with a pinched nerve. Quark then brings Odo an infant changeling that’s ill, which he obtained from a Yridian trader, and which he sells to Odo for eight strips of latinum. (Odo’s barely aware of the financial part of the transaction, so enraptured is he by the changeling. Quark pretty much places Odo’s thumb on the padd to complete the deal.)

According to Bashir, the infant has taken on a lot of tetryon radiation. While Bashir starts treatment, Odo explains to Sisko that this is the size he was when he was found in the Denorios Belt. Sisko puts Odo in charge of the changeling, to Odo’s glee, but also suggests asking Dr. Mora for help, to Odo’s lack of glee. Sisko, however, says it’s Odo’s call.

[If it wasn’t for me, you’d still be sitting on a shelf somewhere in a beaker labeled “unknown sample.”]