Friday, September 9, 2011

Classics: DS9 6:10 - The Magnificent Ferengi

Overall Rating: 7.0

This is a really sad thing to say, but...this is easily the best Ferengi-focused episode ever written for this show excluding "Business as Usual".  This's stupid, and proud of it, rather than stupid and too stupid to realize why it's stupid.

Plot Synopsis:

Memory Alpha has the scoop...and it's a scoop of pure insanity.

The Skinny:

Behr and Beimler are at it episode just filled with bad jokes, slapstick comedy and idiotic character archetypes based on simplistic Hollywood worldviews and a general disregard for logic while crafting the "plot" quotes because here, like in almost every other Ferengi episode, the plot makes no damned sense.  But hey, guess what!  This WORKS!  Why?  Because Behr abandoned small thinking for a split second and decided to attach the inanity to a positive virtue (bravery) and soak the entire episode in "aw f*** it...let's have FUN!" rather than taking his own "humor" seriously.

Only on DS9 can a pack of combat-grizzled Jem'hadar and the same slimy Vorta we dealt with in "Rocks and Shoals" fall before the bumbling stupidity of a gang of six Ferengi in a quest to save their leader and Quark's mother from the Dominion (because the Dominion would give two s***s about the Ferengi...riiiiight).  Only on DS9 is it actually hilarious to see a dead Vorta walking for eternity into a bulkhead.  Only on DS9 can a bunch of greedy little trolls grow to become something much more during an episode that is obviously not intended to be serious.  I can't get too happy with this is, after all, still completely illogical in premise and it does still contain some truly groan-worthy moments where the humor doesn't work.  But they tried...and they were oh-so-close to finally getting the Ferengi right.

Writing: 6.5

Silly, but not insulting.  This script is definitely hit or miss, but it turns out to be worth a viewing.

Acting:  8.5

The entire guest cast (plus Armin Shimerman) actually does a good job with this one...the Ferengi are typically portrayed in far less annoying ways here than they were on TNG or in early DS9 episodes.

Message: 6.0

I guess I could give it points for showing that the Ferengi are intelligent survivors (whereas TNG tended to play them as entirely stupid)...but they survive in spite of obvious stupidity and clumsiness...and the show it just too silly to take heart in Quark's victory.  Just watch and have fun...but don't expect miracles.

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