Family BusinessBy Michelle Erica Green
Posted at January 12, 2004 - 11:11 PM GMT
See Also: 'Family Business' Episode Guide
Quark and Rom return home to Ferenginar because their mother has been accused of earning profit - a crime for females. They are horrified to discover that Moogie has taken to wearing clothes (also a crime) and has in fact been earning LOADS of profit! When they warn her that she faces not only criminal charges but also disruption in the life of her sons, she agrees to stop (though she manages to hide quite a bit away for herself).
Meanwhile, Jake sets his father up on a date with freighter captain Kasidy Yates, an attractive woman who's interested in baseball. The two have what appears to be a successful first date.
This episode had once priceless moment: Dax saying to Sisko, "If I were still Curzon I'd have stolen Kasidy from you," and Sisko replying, "That's one of the reasons I'm glad you're not still Curzon!" Now, if only he'd spent the rest of the episode listing the OTHER reasons, rather than throwing himself into Ms. Freighter's hands, and us into the hands of the Ferengi...
Okay, I didn't really have much AGAINST Jake's setting up a date for his father, just not much for it either. It's sort of embarrassing when Sisko can't get lucky without help from his son. And Kasidy's too much enigma to be interesting. Her brother plays baseball? What a lucky coincidence! Now, if I may be so rude as to ask, who in hell is she and are we going to find out anything meaningful? Or are we to assume that - now that he's gotten Jennifer out of his system in the other universe, and slept with his two closest underlings there as well - a pretty face will get under Ben's skin?
I see that in the 24th century, men of color will still be expected to have meaningful relationships only with women of color. I guess I should be grateful they're giving black actresses work, since very few TV shows do even that, but there's something a little odd about it. Sisko can be attracted to whomever he wants, but I couldn't help but notice that he only got evil twin version of the white women, and the three dark-skinned women he's been interested in all resemble each other - long, straight hair, high cheekbones - does this man have a fixation, or a fear of diversity? Of course, Kira has a strong preference for Bajoran men, but that is based on shared culture. We don't know whether Kasidy is African-American or even whether she's human. She could be half-Bajoran, half-El-Aurian for all we know.
I'm stalling to discuss the subplot because I really don't want to think about the main story. I figured it would end dreadfully and it did, although I liked the setup - Quark's Mom with her big lobes intimidating her son's puny little bar of latinum! Quark throws a tantrum: selfish mommy, you never really loved me! And then Rom's BIG Oedipal moment: Mommy, won't you take off all your clothes and play with my teeth? WHOO! If only the episode had ended there, with Rom sighing in joy as his naked mother stuck her equipment into his mouth!
But no, they had to resolve the plot. So they restored to the oldest setup in the book--Mommy will be good because Preserving The Family is the most important thing to ANY woman, far more important than her desire for self-respect or triumphing over years in marriage to a dope or teaching her son a lesson about women and power. Ugh! Admittedly the Ferengi track record is such that I couldn't hope for better, but it was still painful to watch the thumbprinting scene.
This episode didn't help my opinion of Quark either as a person or a character. Has he forgotten Pel, or have the writers?
Michelle Erica Green reviews 'Enterprise' episodes for the Trek Nation, for which she is also a news writer. An archive of her work can be found at The Little Review.