Hippocratic OathBy Michelle Erica Green
Posted at January 13, 2004 - 10:10 AM GMT
See Also: 'Hippocratic Oath' Episode Guide
Bashir and O'Brien go into the Gamma Quadrant and end up stranded on a planet amidst a group of renegade Jem'Hadar who want to break their addiction to Ketracel-White. Bashir comes close to figuring out a way, with the help of a Jem'Hadar who can survive without the drug, but O'Brien destroys his research when it appears that it will prove deadly.
This was the goofiest episode in the history of DS9. Parts of it were terrific, and parts of it were so dumb that I can't figure out WHAT they were doing here. And then there were the *sigh* Worf parts. What the heck is going on with this show?
WARNING: RED HERRING: OK, I'll give the producers some credit; I was positive that the non-drug-addicted Jem'Hadar was going to turn out to be a Founder, testing the non-interference committment of O'Brien and Bashir. I was wrong, which gladdened my heart: the last episode of last season must have creeped me out, because I keep seeing changelings everywhere. Instead the renegade Jem'Hadar were just what they said they were, which makes the Gamma Quadrant a more interesting place. Rebel soldiers! Cracks in the Dominion! Think we'll hear more about this, or will it get forgotten? Considering how much the last two Jem'Hadar episodes bored me, I was pleasantly surprised to find myself riveted by this one. But, but, but, but, but...
WARNING: PLOT HOLES IN ROAD, PROCEED WITH CAUTION: What the hell was the deal with the Jem'Hadar who didn't need the drug? Was he born non-addicted or is there some way to reproduce his condition? I had thought that the definition of Jem'Hadar was "addicted to White," and that the strength would go away without the drug. How did he he amass his followers in the first place if his race is so contentious...and if they were not like the other Jem'Hadar we've seen, why did they turn on him in the end...and if they WERE like the other Jem'Hadar we've seen, what took them so long? What did Bashir think he was on to when O'Brien blew up his experiment, and will he keep at it on DS9?
WARNING: NOBODY KNOWS ABOUT THE PRIME DIRECTIVE: I realize this is almost a moot point. But what about that noninterference directive, Julian and Miles? How do the Starfleet boys expect the Dominion to leave their own quadrant alone when they're butting in to the structure of Dominion society, which Sisko could strip their ranks for? During the last scene in the shuttle, I waited patiently for O'Brien to explain that, appalling as it seemed, he blew up Bashir's research because it could have thrown off the balance of power in the entire Gamma Quadrant. I took it for granted that O'Brien's actions were motivated by the Starfleet desire to obey an oath which says death is preferable to interference. I wanted some Star Trek here, does anyone mind?
WARNING: BASHIR-BASHING: But no - Miles destroyed the experiment because He Loves Julian And Didn't Want Him To Die! My jaw dropped to my knees. Between the opening scene, where Miles wished aloud that Keiko were more like Julian, and that closing declaration of affection, I'm ready to believe that we're finally going to get a gay couple on Trek. Over and over, O'Brien and Bashir wind up in a shuttlecraft together, diss women, discuss tech stuff, bond, and get interrupted by hostile aliens. What if they didn't...would Keiko be jealous? Would Garak? Bashir reminded me of McCoy at moments; his earnestness has a sincere, naive quality which is appealing. But why didn't he get mad and stay mad? Am I to assume he's in love with O'Brien too, and can't hold a grudge for long? Consistency, please!
WARNING: FEMINIST RANT: It's bad enough that Dax was absent for the entire episode and Kira only showed up long enough for a gratuitous scene with Worf. MUST O'Brien discuss his marital problems in terms of Keiko not acting enough like a man - is THAT whine still going to around in the 24th century? I hope she come back from Bajor and declares that it isn't her project leader but that hot former resistance fighter with the long red hair who's caught her fancy.
WARNING: WORF IS ON DS9: Surely I am not the only one who shuddered when Sisko told Worf he'd start to fit in eventually. I'm glad they're dealing with the inevitable Odo-Worf security conflict straight up because it's so obvious, but, well, it's SO OBVIOUS. I figure Odo had to be a better security chief than we've ever seen him be or Sisko would have gotten him fired, and it was nice to see him have a real plan for once, but they didn't have to make Worf look stupid, nor Quark careless. As Sisko so aptly put it, DS9 has more shades of gray than TNG...I mean the Enterprise. Let's keep that in mind when we pick scripts and bring out real issues rather than pat little conflicts, please, 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.