Tuesday, July 16, 2013

DS9:Trials and Tribble-ations

I've often heard from Trekkies that if they could show someone a single episode of Star Trek, it'd be Trials and Tribble-ations. I argue that DS9's glossy homage to Star Trek: The Original Series is too meta, too full of in-jokes, and maybe a little too intimidating for a new Trek initiate. But there's no arguing that the awesome episode is a fan favorite and I'm certainly not immune to its charms. Here are ten reasons why Trials and Tribble-ations is awesome!

1- Right off the bat there's a SciFi-themed meta joke. The Temporal Investigation agents arrive on DS9 to question Sisko regarding his jacking around in the timeline and their names are anagrams of Agents Mulder and Scully. Also, they mention SEVENTEEN times that Kirk committed temporal violations. The man is a legend!

2- The way the old Enterprise is revealed is flat out beautiful.

3- The look of this thing is fantastic. Director Jonathan West shot this one using 60s lenses and it pays off. In combination with the re-built sets and the spot-on lighting, it's not hard to buy that our new TV friends are suddenly interacting with our old pals.

4-The writers didn't miss anything. The stuff that stands out about Trouble With Tribbles, the fan favorite lines, the little in-jokes--it's all commented on in brilliant ways. From O'Brien confusing Shatner's stunt double for Kirk, to Sisko repeating the "storage compartment, storage compartment" line in the same strange staccato that Shatner used--it's amazing. 

5- The DS9 crew is fully integrated into the classic Trouble With Tribbles bar fight. 

6- Spot our DS9 friend: 

7- I know I already said this but seriously. Everyone just looks AMAZING. 
8- When the writers were planning this one (knowing that it would be a special anniversary episode meant to mesh with a classic TOS story) they wanted to do Tribbles but weren't sure about logistics etc. They all went out for pizza to discuss it and, by sheer coincidence, in walked Charlie Brill who'd played Arne Darvin and would go on to resume his role in DS9. Pizza was his first, best destiny that night.

9- Klingons. Just... Klingons. 

10- Nope. I'm not giving any more of this awesome sauce away for free. 

If you want my advice on a great way to spend a couple hours, go back and watch The Trouble With Tribbles and then follow it immediately with Trials and Tribble-ations. You won't regret it. 


  1. This is one of my favorite episodes. It's light-hearted and happy and a complete fan-service episode.

  2. Every time I see this, I'm amazed at just how GREAT these effects are-it's seamless, it looks incredible, and it's a heck of a lot of fun. I wish there could have been a TNG/TOS crossover that worked as well as this- but somehow, I don't think it would have been close to this good.

  3. I never really got into DS9, but I totally want to see this episode now.


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