1.09: “The Passenger”

I…don’t really have a ton to say about this one, honestly? As with much of the first few seasons, and S1 especially, it’s a pretty standard Weird Space Thing of the Week episode. That said, it seems to be a WSTotW episode with a bit more in the way of character moments and interactions than we’ve had in some of the previous episodes, so a little more interesting. (I can already barely remember what happened in “Babel” apart from the mental image of Sisko passed out over the terminal while Odo and Quark are running things.)

Overall, it’s fine! It’s fine. It’s not terrible! It’s just not particularly memorable, either.

Who needs to get their life right this week?

First, I did appreciate that for a second episode in a row, Bashir’s self-assurance immediately precedes his getting into trouble. I also appreciated that he managed to have scenes with Dax without being weird at her! Good job, Julian, sorry about the rough time you had this week. Finally, I very much appreciated Kira’s general air of “my guy I actually respected you for a minute there, please don’t ruin it” in the runabout. Big mood, as the kids say.

Second, Odo’s ability to be melodramatic is AMAZING. Threatening to resign after his first interaction with Primmin, oh my LORD. I love that for all Odo’s posture of bemusement bordering on disdain at Humanoid Nonsense, he can be petty and dramatic with the best of them. I also love that Sisko is 100% aware of this and does a great job of telling Odo he needs to chill. Alas, Ben, Odo has no chill whatsoever, but points for the attempt.

So what’s the deal with Primmin?

Apparently he’s in this episode and the next one, and was mostly there to fill in while Colm Meaney was filming a movie. I also didn’t really notice O’Brien’s absence until about a third of the way into the episode, whoops.

Like Bashir in “Emissary”, Primmin serves as kind of the odd person out among the Starfleet crew, in that his Starfleet worldview has never really been challenged, and he’s having to learn to work within a different set of rules. I love the times that DS9 plays with the contrast between the way they do things and the rest of Starfleet, and explores some of the discomfort much of (to borrow something Sisko says later) the more black and white Starfleet has with DS9’s shades of gray.

I really like that in this case, Primmin ends up learning from Odo, and the two end up working pretty well together. I’m all about drama, but it was still nice to just have some initial friction turn into good teamwork.

Can we talk about that ending though

…uh. Wow. Perhaps it’s another indication of how early we are in the show; I feel like later on there would be rather more of a reaction to the fact that Kajada just, uh, summarily executes Vantika? I mean, Bashir and Dax just have “those wacky Kobliads” smiles on their faces? WHEW.

Horniness Rankings

  • Quark, although I appreciate that his horniness is largely kept to himself/used to annoy Odo, and he behaves relatively appropriately toward Dax.
  • Kajada, who has a Javert-like horniness for JUSTICE
  • Bashir, for himself, in that opening. Or, more generously, for SCIENCE.

One thought on “1.09: “The Passenger”

  1. “I’m the one with the raktajino *machine*!” Quark, put your raktajino machine back in your ridiculous orange pants. For god’s sake.

    The mystery in this one was actually reasonably good, I thought – standard TNG-level fare, but well-executed. The resolution/reveal seems obvious in retrospect, but I didn’t mind. What I *did* kind of mind, and have many questions about, was how Siddig was directed to play Vantika. I mean…

    “Hailing? US?”
    “DO IT.”
    “Fit. As. A. Fiddle.”

    I mean, what did they tell him to do? Was he trying to imitate someone? Was this what he came up with when told “now you’re possessed by a calculating alien criminal – go!” So many questions. Also, just out of curiosity, assuming at least some of the freighter crew were killed in the hijacking (or at least one of the mercenaries was), does Bashir have to go through a legal proceeding to prove he wasn’t running his own body at the time? Is that, maybe, harder with the neural evidence that was pulled of his brain having been vaporized by the Kobliat cop?

    Prosecutor: Dr. Bashir, you *claim* that your brain was invaded by the neural energy of Vantika of Kobliat during this incident.
    Bashir: Yes.
    Prosecutor: And the neural energy that would prove this is…
    Bashir: Floating in the air because the lady cop vaporized it.

    I mean.

    Anyway. Thank God Primmin only showed up twice… he really was kind of annoying, although I see what they were going for. Oddly though, he didn’t really play the same kind of role that O’Brien would have played, so having him substitute for Colm Meany in the script (if that’s what they were trying) wasn’t very effective. It was fairly effective to have him play off Odo, since Odo is one of the least Starfleet-friendly characters on the show, at least at this point.

    Yeah, not tons going on with this one, but other than Siddig’s performance as Vantika, I enjoyed it.


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