Yet Another Kurosawa Ripoff
"The Magnificent Ferengi" Plot Summary:
When the Nagus contacts Quark to inform him that the Dominion has abducted Moogie and offers fifty bars of latinum as a reward for her return, Quark devises a rescue. He puts together a team consisting of, as one member puts it, a child (Nog), an idiot (Rom), a failure (a jailed associate of Quark's), and a psychopath (Lepka, a hit man) - plus Quark himself and Ex-Liquidator Brunt, who has a ship and wants to get back into the Nagus's good graces. Sisko gets Starfleet to agree to trade a Vorta prisoner for Moogie, and the two sides agree to meet at Empok Nor.
Kivan, the Vorta exchange prisoner, warns Quark that all the Ferengi will be killed. But Quark negotiates successfully with Yelgrin, the Vorta holding Moogie. Nog slices Moogie's hand to make sure she's not a changeling, and all seems to be going well until one of the Ferengi learns that Quark and Rom lied about the amount of the reward and in the ensuing struggle shoots Kivan, killing the Vorta.
Nog uses a neurostimulator to make Kivan walk as if he were alive. Yelgrin is suspicious, but the Ferengi kill the Jem'Hadar soldiers and take the living Vorta back with them as a present for Starfleet. Moogie is proud of her boys and they feel good about themselves.
My GOD this was a dumb episode. OK, admittedly it had cute moments: scenes ripped off from The Magnificent Seven like when Quark, Rom, and Nog all exchanged a long look before heading into the fray, and humorous dialogue like when Yelgrin, played by Iggy Pop, discussed skin lotion with Moogie. But mostly it wavered between idiotic and boring, with some truly nasty events like the psychopath killing Moogie in a holosimulation and Nog cutting his grandmother's hand open. I'd much rather have seen an episode about the secret mission Dax, Bashir, and O'Brien undertook on the Defiant into Cardassian space, which got only a five-second mention.
The hit man described the rescue operation as sloppy and amateurish, and it definitely felt that way. I don't understand why Quark didn't go to Sisko asking for Federation help right off; the Ferengi may not be members of the Federation, but a Jem'Hadar seizure of a civilian would surely have enraged them. I also don't understand why Zek himself didn't negotiate with the finest bounty hunters in the galaxy for Moogie's rescue. And I REALLY don't understand why nobody's stripped Empok Nor of all useful parts by now. Those plot holes had to be left in order for this episode to work at all, but they made the writers look...sloppy and amateurish.
The plot was very predictable: there was no doubt that Quark was going to get caught in his lie about the reward, and no doubt that the Jem'Hadar would arrive in force. I was disappointed that Iggy Pop dismissed his defenders so easily; even he looked sloppy and amateurish. The ending dialogue about how good they felt about being heroes was embarrassingly bad; I almost wished Quark would say he did it for the money instead of for Moogie or glory.
"I hate Ferengi," the dying Vorta in this episode groaned with his last breath. I have to agree.
Deep Space Nine Reviews