DS9 Episode 1.10: Move Along Home

In which we receive further evidence that there are a lot of jerks in the Gamma Quadrant.

Memory Alpha says: A visiting delegation from the Gamma Quadrant turns four crew members into “pieces” for a bizarre game. (Please click the Memory Alpha link for detailed information.)

‘Move Along Home’ vies with ‘If Wishes Were Horses’ for the coveted title of Dorkiest Episode of Deep Space Nine. Visually and structurally I found it reminded me a lot of a children’s TV show from my childhood called, if I remember correctly, T-Bag. A young girl had to solve a series of alphabet-themed challenges, moving around a giant game board, in order to defeat a wicked sorceress called Tallulah Bag, whose motto was ‘Ignorance is bliss.’ Her unwilling henchman was a grumpy little boy called T-Shirt, who she kidnapped at the start of each new series and enchanted and bullied into serving her; he always ended up turning on her and helping the heroine, and yet she kept on doing it. I always liked T-Shirt. I wish he were in ‘Move Along Home.’

Two interesting snippets from the Memory Alpha page: one, STILL NO O’BRIEN THIS WEEK. AARGH I HAVE BROGUE WITHDRAWAL. Two, it seems that it was actually Dax who was supposed to visit the Enterprise in ‘Birthright, Part 1’ but Terry Farrell was too busy with this episode, so they sent Siddig El Fadil instead. I’m very, very glad about that, just because I’m a big fan of the friendship Julian and Data struck up (well, Julian did most of the striking) and wish it could have been pursued. It really is silly that the Enterprise never comes near DS9 again.

  • Sisko clearly thinks he looks pretty good in his dress uniform. Actually, I agree!
  • Jake has a remarkably jaunty way of getting into a chair there. Has he been taking Riker Lessons?
  • I like how reluctant Jake is to have A Talk. And dear little Jake, you should not take too much advice on The Ladies from Nog. On one hand, yeah, teenagers shouldn’t get all their information on this stuff from schoolfriends, and given that Nog comes from an extremely patriarchal culture his ideas are unlikely to go down well with the spunky Bajoran girls Jake is thinking of, but I still think Sisko should try to get to know Nog as an individual rather than calling him The Ferengi Boy. I am glad that Nog will eventually be vindicated as a nice person, behind the teeth.
  • So the Vulcans let you in for this? Then… wasn’t the Vulcan encounter with the Wadi the first contact? Ha ha, look at Sisko trying to seize The Teachable Moment and Jake rolling his eyes.
  • Oh Julian. You nong. Now you don’t get to show off your figure. On the bright side, I am sure Garak will be only too happy to measure you up for a new dress uniform.
  • And apparently the Vulcans told them about the games at Quark’s?
  • Fallow has some really eccentric sideburns.
  • I’m just trying to imagine some of the many different uses of a klon-peeg stick. Poking… scratching… poking while scratching…
  • You know the square glasses at Quark’s? I recently learned that they were actually the containers from votive candles from that American homewares shop called Pier something. Pier 9? They ordered pretty much the whole chain’s stock so they’d have enough, then emptied them out. The coffee mugs with the big bases are travel mugs found in a truck stop. Since DS9, at times, is a truck stop, that pleases me.
  • I know I complain a lot about Avery Brooks’ wooden performance in early DS9, but I do like his performance in this little bit with Quark, showing weariness and boredom. It humanises Sisko a bit.
  • Does that imply that the dabo girls don’t know how to rig the wheel? Perhaps Quark doesn’t entrust that information to women, but it seems like a good way to lose money.
  • I would like to know how much older than Jake Nog is, and what the difference/equivalence is in terms of Ferengi and human lifespan. Ha, look at Sisko assume Nog is getting girly action.
  • I like how even when Jake is in slight trouble he gets a kiss goodnight.
  • Bravo, confirmation that The Holosuite Is For Porn.
  • Quark is a terrible negotiator. They haven’t even said anything and he has no reason to think they can actually hurt him.
  • Pink neon game table out of nowhere! That’s some weird technology.
  • Welcome to the second shap, I guess. This is a cool overhead shot of Confused Sisko on the triangular tiled floor.
  • This is one gaudy set. All that purple and orange!
  • God Fallow’s a jerk.
  • And that cowardly ululation you hear would be Julian.
  • I love how indignant Kira is. I completely sympathise with her.
  • Julian’s looking silly in front of the Sisko a lot this week.
  • Odo is a reassuring person to be able to go to in an emergency. Lieutenant Primmin is kind of a tosser; what’s up with the way he says ‘CONstable OOOOOdooo’ as Odo arrives in Ops? This is, incidentally, the last episode in which we see Primmin, and no explanation is given for his disappearance. Some speculate that he went to another assignment. I believe Odo made him disappear for the greater good… the greater good.
  • A game that you’re required to learn as you play is kind of annoying to me. More wank is being talked about the nature of games than was in ‘Hide and Q.’ How can you play a game you don’t understand, anyway? You’ll just blunder around, and anyone more experienced you play against is fleecing you just as much as Quark was with the fixed dabo wheel.
  • Ugh, the repetitive Allamaraine hopscotch scene. This little girl has no rhythm. Jadzia makes it even more annoying by repeating the rhyme out of synch with her. I do enjoy Kira’s ‘you’ve got to be shitting me’ expression.
  • I actually don’t understand why Quark makes the connection between four officers and his four pieces in the game, other than ‘this game is weird.’
  • This scene is just… just irritating. I’m identifying an awful lot with Kira’s frustration, and all the cough-acting is quite annoying. Their lives are all saved by the fact that Julian Bashir will not pass up a free drink. Interesting to note that the Wadi in the annoying smoke party room are using what will later be established as the Bajoran style of applause, tapping the palm of one hand against the back of the other.
  • Why is Quark so excited about his jewels, anyway? Shouldn’t he check whether they’re varieties that can be replicated? Those are essentially valueless.
  • The only reason Primmin is in this scene is to explain something that would normally be explained by O’Brien, as if chunky guys with yellow shoulders were interchangeable. He’s so going to get murrrderrred. I had no memory of such a long O’Brien absence in this early period of the show, and it’s really bugging me! So there’s a room on the Wadi ship that transports you to where the game table is? This seems like really fascinating technology. What kind of range can it work at? Where, physically, is the environment the players are in? I know this will not be followed up. Are they just walking around in a holodeck-like room on the Wadi ship? That would make some logical sense.
  • That’s right, lights, go for the pretty lanky one! In ‘Hide and Q’ terms, this puts Julian into a penalty box, I suppose; he will not cry about it. In practical production terms, this frees him up to go to the Enterprise and turn on a magic beam, thereby bringing Data a dream.
  • Odo’s breath is bad luck!
  • This is some quality grovelling. The brilliant part is that during the ‘Please… please… PLEASE!’ Armin Shimerman shakes his head so hard that Quark’s forehead appliance wiggles in a very rubbery manner.
  • Oh no, Jadzia’s leg is trapped between polystyrene rocks.
  • Sisko! Don’t drop rocks down there, you’ll wake up the Balrog!
  • The ‘It’s only a game!’ twist ending is just… so irritating, to both Kira and me.
  • Off go the Wadi, and on the bright side, I don’t think we’ll ever see those jerks again, any more than we’ll see the Stigs who were hunting Tosk.
  • In short, I don’t have much to say about this episode, because it’s so short on actual matter – and the only elements that will actually matter later, as far as I can see, are Jake and Sisko’s continuing conflict over Nog, and the introduction of Jake’s interest in girls. The Nog stuff will pay off somewhat in the following episode, although this will bring up a point that I really want to cavil about.

    So that was fairly lame. Next time, ‘The Nagus’ starts to expand on Ferengi culture, introduces us to an incredibly annoying voice, and makes me think that the Nagus’ valet and Mr Homn should really hang out. Thank goodness, O’Brien will be back.


    10 Responses to “DS9 Episode 1.10: Move Along Home”

    1. Mark Stanley Says:

      >Maybe Colm Meaney was filming a movie at this point? He agreed to do DS9 with the understanding that he'd be allowed time off for films.

    2. Picardigan Says:

      >Could be. HOW DARE HE. I HAVE NEEDS.

      • Sparklynn Says:

        Have you seen all of his movies? You should just find them all and spend an entire weekend marathoning Colm Meaney.

        • picardigan Says:

          I’ve seen The Commitments and The Snapper and have never been able to lay my hands on The Van. I wonder how much of the development of Jimmy’s character just came from how lovely Colm Meaney is?

    3. jakeish Says:

      I really liked the interaction between Jake and Odo, even though that was kind of a throwaway little scene. Odo was so genuine in playing it cool until the second Jake was gone and then it was abruptly ALL BUSINESS. Usually people go a little too far in faking reassurance and it’s just obvious that they really think the situation’s kind of crap, but Odo proves to be an excellent white liar. Also, who’d’ve thought he’d be the Cool Uncle type, all RUN ALONG AND LOOK AT HOT GIRLS? I dig it.

      (My theory is that Odo can do no wrong, and I feel confident that it will pan out.)

      Julian Bashir is a ridiculous human being.

      It is SO weird that Quark makes the game pieces/missing people connection. I get that crazy shit goes down all the time in space, apparently, but really? That’s your immediate thought? And Odo doesn’t react with, “What the hell, that’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard,” like any reasonable person would? Okay, I guess.

      I feel like I need to tell someone that I was first introduced to both Colm Meaney and Rene Auberjonois through the Stargate franchise, in which they each played bad guys (well, I’d probably seen Meaney in TNG before then, but my memories of watching that when I was little don’t go too far beyond “Data is awesome!” “Picard looks like my dad!” and “I like my brother’s Riker action figure!”). Auberjonois was only in one episode of SG-1 but I’ve remembered him distinctly since then because it was quite a good episode full of moral ambiguity, a favorite fiction theme of mine, and he was such a convincingly terrible-beneath-the-surface person in it.

      • picardigan Says:

        The first thing I remember him from was a 1980s sitcom called Benson, about which I remember very little except that M. Auberjonois played a prissy jerk with a moustache. Is this a worthy share with which to meet your share?

        Julian IS a ridiculous human being but he just gets more and more lovable as time goes by. Also hotter.

        • jakeish Says:

          I can totally see him as a prissy jerk with a mustache.

          I have no objections to increases in loveableness or hotness. Screencaps have lead me to believe that they let him be stubbly later on and I will BASK IN IT.

          • picardigan Says:

            Oh, the stubbliness is excellent. And the eyelash fluttering never entirely stops. Particularly in Garak’s direction.

            • Sparklynn Says:

              He does have lovely eyelashes. And he’s so hopeless around women, even when he stops being a smarmy jerkbag. His state of complete bafflement is adorable.

              • picardigan Says:

                Pretty much every person reminds me of some kind of animal if I think about it enough. Julian is a baby giraffe. It’s the eyelashes and the legs and if you ever look at a front-face picture of a baby giraffe, they have exactly the same hopeful and well-meaning but awkward smile as Julian Bashir.

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