The episode begins in the vicinity of Quark's bar, where Morn (the 24th Century's answer to Norm Peterson, my second reference to Cheers in this episode, and strangely, not the last) descends a staircase. Morn is mostly used as a running gag on the show. Often we'll hear lots of secondhand accounts of Morn being extremely talkative, but on-screen, he's just a big gray lump sitting in Quark's bar, never once speaking on camera. In the sixth season, the character finally got to be the focus of his very own episode, the brilliantly titled "Who Mourns for Morn?"
Morn is carrying a flower today, and he brings it over to a very human-looking Starfleet crewwoman, who, despite being of a certain age, is quite attractive. She kisses Morn on the cheek and they walk off arm in arm, thus setting the tone for the "romantic" nature of tonight's episode. Blech.
Morn is dating your mother. Now deal with it.
Pan over to Captain Sisko and Constable Odo sitting at a table, and of course Sisko has an amazed look on his face as he watches Morn and his lady friend walk past. Odo begins making idle chit chat. Apparently, Chief O'Brien and his wife Keiko want to name their new baby "Sean", but Odo points out there's a slight problem with that: "In Bajoran, sean means 'swamp'." Well, I'm sure there's no dearth of people with "Swamp" in their names here on Earth. Especially if they happen to be characters in a Jerry Bruckheimer film. Odo nominates Sisko to be the one to tell the O'Briens about their unfortunate choice of name. (Rene Auberjonois, who plays Odo, along with having a name that is impossible to spell without the aid of Google, also directed this episode. Which really isn't all that important to note, but I know there's gonna be at least one person complaining if I don't mention it.)
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Up walks Lt. Commander Dax. She sits down and begins working out some of the kinks in her neck. Sisko says this is the eighth time she's pulled a neck muscle this month. Odo points out it's actually been seven times, but she's also been treated for "contusions" and "cracked ribs" lately. And apparently, all of this is the work of her new love interest, Commander Worf. Lest you suspect domestic abuse, Worf has also been to the Infirmary for similar injuries lately. Sisko immediately zeroes in on the cause:
Sisko: Isn't there any way the... the two of you could... um, um, you know... |
Dax: Make love? [Yeck.]
Sisko: ...without injuring yourselves?
Dax: Interspecies romance isn't without its danger! That's part of the fun!
Oh, lovely. So apparently, good Klingon sex involves the breaking of bones. What a deeee-lightful notion to ponder.
Uhhh... You're welcome!
And the best part is how Dax is positively beaming over being physically abused by her boyfriend. Violent sex! It's just part of the fun! Eventually, it comes out that she and Worf are going to Risa for their vacation.
Odo gets a wide-eyed look and says, "From what I hear, Risa makes the Hoobishan Baths look like a monastery!" Do they ever! Now, tell us exactly how you know about these baths, Odo? Sisko quips, "I hope they have a good hospital," and both he and Odo share a hearty chuckle. Yuk yuk! The bitch had it coming, right, fellas?
Spousal battery is comedy gold!
Anyway, according to clunky exposition, "Risa == pleasure planet", and so forth. Odo and Sisko think that since Worf agreed to go to Risa, this must mean he's loosening up. But, predictably, in the background, he immediately storms up to a nearby replicator and booms, "Prune juice! Extra large!" Wow, ain't no shame in his regularity.
He joins the others, but gets grumpy when he finds out Dax told everybody about their trip to Risa. Worf says he's only going because he wants to spend time alone with Dax. "We have much to discuss." Sisko pries, so Dax says it's all about how she had lunch with an "ex-lover" named Captain Boday, who's a "Gallamite". Worf growls, "His skull is transparent!" Like that even has anything to do with anything, except to remind us viewers that Dax previously mentioned him in the episode "The Maquis" (part 1). Then the two of them have a long, drawn out, tedious discussion about trust, and Odo and Sisko can already see that this is going to be one fun trip to Risa, so they quickly take their leave.
Bacardi! And prune juice! They get the job done!
Worf's hackles are up because Dax discusses their personal lives with other people. Um, didn't you have an extended personal conversation in front of two other people just now? But Dax retorts that he's being controlling, and points out that Sisko and Odo are her friends.
Soon, Dr. Bashir and his airheaded girlfriend Leeta show up. Leeta is one of the Dabo girls at Quark's bar, basically a piece of asum, I mean, a piece of eye candy, with a ditzy, chipmunk voice, who dated several people at DS9 throughout the run of the series.
At this point, she's dating Dr. Bashir (actually, to be completely accuratespoiler!we'll learn later on in this episode that they're no longer dating). But before the season is out, Leeta will end up marrying Rom, Quark's slow-witted half-brother. And that's what I call pretty uneven characterization, frankly, when a woman can go from dating the genetically enhanced chief medical officer to marrying a guy who was born to play the lead in Flowers for Algernon.
In earlier seasons, Leeta seemed to have at least half a clue, sometimes even three-quarters of a clue, but by the time she marries Rom she'll be about as bright as a sweet potato. For an analogy, you know how Steven Soderbergh used to be a great director, back when he made movies like Traffic and The Limey? And then he started dating (and eventually married) that bim Jules Asner? And ever since then we've been getting Full Frontal and Solaris and Ocean's 11, 12, 13, 14, and 15? Well, I think it's the same situation here. Rom is Leeta's Jules Asner. And as we saw in "Profit and Lace", comparisons between Rom and bimbos are all too appropriate.
Anyhow, Bashir and Leeta have heard about Dax and Worf's trip to Risa, and want to come along, much to Worf's chagrin. Dax says they wanted to spend the time alone, but Leeta assures them that once they get to Risa, she and Bashir will be too busy to come up for air, if you know what I'm getting at. And I think you do, because you're a sick, sick pervert. You only came to this site because of my Beach Babes 2 recap, didn't you? Didn't you?
Dax seems to have some interest in enabling Leeta and Bashir's hot, sweaty, never-ending monkey love sessions, so she tells Worf that there's "no harm in sharing a runabout!" There is harm, however, in sharing other things, so let's hope the gals are each bringing their own separate Kaboodles for storing their various lotions, lubricants, and contraceptives. Of course, as a straight male, I'm only assuming that Bashir and Worf are sponge-worthy.
So Worf begrudgingly agrees. Leeta hugs him, and Michael Dorn gives us a truly priceless reaction to the unwanted embrace. Leeta runs off to pack, while Bashir puts a hand on Worf's shoulder, leading to this memorable exchange.
Worf: Do not hug me.
Bashir: I promise we'll keep out of your hair.
Yuck. "Out of your hair". Four minutes into this, and everything's already taking on revolting sexual overtones. As Bashir wanders off, Worf says, "Good," and tells Dax, "Because we have much to discuss." A phrase that he'll be using approximately 378 more times over the next 45 minutes, made all the more infuriating by the fact that they'll never actually discuss anything. But for some reason, this comment from Worf causes Dax to start panic breathing.
On a very special episode of Deep Space Nine, guest star Blossom teaches Worf how to laugh and love!
Cut to Worf, Dax, and Captain Sisko walking through a station corridor. Sisko wishes he were going along (trust me Ben, you don't, run away, Ben, run!), speaking wistfully about the "great times" he had on Risa with Dax. And of course, he doesn't mean it like that, but Worf glares at him anyway. Until Sisko clarifies that he had great times with Dax's previous Trill host, Curzon. So I presume the "great times" they had together were not actually together together. But, hey, you never know. Dollars to donuts someone's already written plenty of Sisko/Curzon slashfic. (Sorry, I'm too late. I was going to post a link to a story that included the delightful phrase "Ezri prefers to bottom", but it looks like it's gone now. So you'll just have to do your own research if you want to satisfy your sick curiosity.)
Dax and Worf take a turbolift to an airlock, so they can meet up with Bashir and Leeta, only to find Quark is also there, impatiently waiting. Worf: "Chagrin grimace chagrin grimace chagrin." Quark: "Comic foil, comic foil, comic foil." It turns out Quark wouldn't give Leeta time off unless she took him along. (Um, wasn't there an entire episode where Quark's staff formed a union so they wouldn't have to take crap like this?)
"Let He Who Is Without Sin...": Now with 20% more zany!
So, anyway, Quark's coming along to Risa. Wow, and here I was afraid this episode wouldn't be wacky enough. Now that Quark's here, my mind is put at ease. Quark hops aboard the runabout and everybody else follows, but not before Worf, the man who put the "grim" in "grimace"not to mention the "grin" in "chagrin"growls, "Jadziiiiia..." Dax assures him she knows they have "much to discuss".
Well, on that suspenseful note, it's off to the opening credits. In the time since my last Deep Space Nine recap, which I think was about ten years ago, I've come to find out that Spock's face appears in the opening credits. Seriously! The special effects house that made the credits apparently inserted an image of Leonard Nimoy from The Search for Spock into the tail of a comet. Before you laugh, or get the nurses to up my medication, I have the screencaps to prove it. Behold!
Pretty cool, huh? Oh well, after that fleeting moment of excitement, moving on.