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"Trials And Tribble-ations"
Air Date: Week of November 5, 1996
Star Date: 4523.7

PLEASE NOTE: I am not longer updating this file. However, please feel free to send additional comments. I will keep them on file.

Latest Reflections from the Guild
11/18/96 Update
11/11/96 Update

While transporting the Orb of Time from Cardassia to Bajor along with a merchant named Barry Waddle, Sisko and crew encounter a massive chroniton surge. The Defiant is knocked 105 years into the past where they encounter the original Enterprise orbiting Deep Space Station K-7. Waddle is actually a Klingon surgically altered to look like a human. His real identity is Arne Darvin, a spy who attempted to stop Federation colonization by poisoning grain during the events of the Classic episode "The Trouble with Tribbles." Kirk inadvertently thwarted Darvin's plans leading to his disgrace. Darvin had returned to this point in time to kill Kirk and establish himself as a hero of the Klingon empire. Unable to determine if Darvin has escaped to the Enterprise or K-7, Sisko and crew don classic-style attire, split up and begin a search. Eventually, Odo and Worf seize Darvin aboard the station but not before he plants a bomb in a tribble. Kirk's life is saved when Sisko and Dax located the terminally-enhanced tribble inside one of the grain bins and beam it into space before returning to the 24th Century.

Brash Reflections

Truly fabulous work on the integrating of the Classic footage! Hand-clapping, rising to our feet, two-finger whistling kudos to the creators! Very, very nicely done on the integration!

And a good story line as well! Lots of nice humorous elements. Lots of excellent blending of the Classic episode's dialogue and this episode's dialogue. THIS WAS FUN!

I loved the guys from Temporal Investigations! Can anyone say "Dragnet"? Cute stuff.

Great Line: "Do they still sing songs of the Great Tribble Hunt?" Odo to Worf after learning that hundreds of warriors were sent to the Tribble Home World to eradicate them.

I was confused about Sisko's statements in the beginning concerning the possibility that the orb they are retrieving is a fake. An Orb of the Prophets seems like an exceedingly difficult thing to fake? I mean, either it works or it doesn't, right? (Or is there some way to fake an orb-experience through drugs?)

My buddy Charles Gragg wondered why the transporter chief didn't notice that Waddle was a Klingon when he or she beamed him onto the Defiant at the beginning of the episode.

Nice work on hinting at the Enterprise-E in the conversation between the two guys from Temporal Investigations. One guys says that there were five Enterprises, the other corrects with "Six."

I'm running out of time this morning but the turbolift on the Classic Enterprise seemed slow to me as did Bashir's Classic Medical Tricorder doo-dad.

I was also confused in the scene where the engineer confronts O'Brien and Bashir. The engineer seems flustered and not sure what to do and who is supposed to be in charge but if you look close you'll see he's a lieutenant and O'Brien is only an ensign. Maybe the guy is just shy?

So, the Klingons have changed but it's not something they talk about with outsiders, eh? (Wink, wink.)

Nice work on the line of guys that exit from the room after Kirk chews them out. All the right colors in the right order! (Even if the Asian-American guy at the beginning of the line seems to change a bit as he walks out the door!)

One more item to note: There is no way, no how, that Kirk--walking onto the bridge--would not take an extended look at the engineering station if a tall leggy brunette was standing beside it, bent over, with her posterior facing our famed skirt-chasing captain. Kirk is not the type to miss this sort of thing!! (grin.)

Oh and Charles thought it was great the way the creators cut back and forth at the end between Sisko and Dax tossing tribbles aside and Kirk being pummelled from above by them!

There's more (particularly an inavoidable one that has to do with the usage of footage from the Classic Episode and the placement of a particular panel) but I'll leave the rest to you, fellow members of the Guild!


Reflections from the Guild

[Note from Phil: I have not had time to verify these but they sounded good to me!]

J. Annelin Grand Centre, AB: I just watched Trials and Tribble-ations. It was well done, the CGI graphics of the old Enterprise, Station K-7 and the Klingon ship are quite good and the scenes showing Kirk, Spock, Scotty, McCoy with Sisko, Dax and the rest is quite good. It's told as a flashback episode so we know from the start all will turn out well. We almost get a reason for the change in the features of "present" day Klingons and the Klingons of that time period but Worf says it's something they don't talk about with outsiders which could be considered a nit because everyone from the "present" day were surprised that's what Klingons looked like. I guess history is not taught any more.

There are a few more nits about the episode:

Watch O'Brien's actions when he's on board the Enterprise, his skill as an engineer are lacking and we see what happens when history is not taught, just watch what he does in the turbo-lift.

We find out that Dax, as an earlier host "dated" Dr McCoy on Earth so Trills had contact with the Federation in the time frame of TOS which makes TNG episode The Host seem odd but it could be not teaching history (NTH) that's to blame once again?

Did you know raktajino is a Klingon drink? I always thought it was Bajoran.

When they showed the previews of the next episode, the one with the visit to Risa, it's a sweeps episode because we'll see some....well it's Risa, that's all i'll say. :> They will also have a sneak preview of the upcoming movie during that episode.

Matt Nelson Spokane WA: While watching the making of "Trials and Tribble-ations" today on the Sci-Fi channel, I notice that they made reference to fans watching for mistakes... Didn't actually SAY nitpickers, but you knew they meant us. ;)

BTW, I have just a FEW nits from that episode already... Mainly, I don't remember seeing ANY of those DS9 characters on the bridge of the original 1701.. But I guess I'd have to pull my tape for sure.. Wink wink! But all in all, looking at it, they are doing an excellent job with those special effects. (Note from Phil: Of course, by now Matt realizes that this episode is an alteration of the past episode so you wouldn't see any of the DS9 crew!)

Another thing.. (and the CREATORS pointed this out! Thanks guys!) Because of the new technologies available, the original prints of the episode can now be seen sharper, clearer. In one scene, where Kirk and Spock are walking in the hallway, (I think it is just before Kirk gets the call from the annoying bureaucrat) you can see light coffee stains on Spock's uniform! Must be why he's so uptight all the time. (yok yok) Having not seen the actual episode yet, though, I can't really give you any more.. But here's hoping I'm the first!

Mark David Bowman of Roslyn, PA: It will be very interesting to see the DS9 crew meeting the TOS crew. I already have a nit for it though and I'm sure many other fans are wondering the same thing. How are they going to explain why the original Enterprise is still using blinking lights and mechanical dials when 300 years earlier computers were using graphics? The only explanation I could think of is that the post atomic horror was so devastating that it wiped out all technology on earth.

Alfredo Ruanova: I just saw the Trials and Tribble-ations show and found it just awesome !!!

11/11/96 Update

Rene Charbonneau: I have an expanation for the apparent knowledge of Trills in the 24rth Century. If you'll recall, the Trill who was in love with Crusher kept it a secret until he was injured and force to reveal the fact that he is a symbiot. I submit that, until this incident, it was Trill law that they keep the fact that they are symbiots a secret. Then, when this incident occurred, Trill authority decided this law was out of date and allowed Trills to reveal what they are in actuality. So, Dax kept her Trill "secret" from doc McCoy, but once it became legal, Curzon Dax revealed his true nature to Sisko. Sure, it's complicated, but considering all we know about the history of Trill, it makes sense. (I haven't seen the episode yet, so i am not sure if they made it clear whether McCoy knew that Dax was a Trill)...

Craig Cicero: I'd like to nominate this ENTIRE episode as the Greatest Moment! Most of the lines were great, and I was laughing throughout...

I especially appreciated the scene were Sisko slaps his insignia a few times before he remembers to pull out his communicator....Well done.

And of course, the whole scene about Worf smelling fine "with just a hint of lilac."

Some of my favorite lines: (I think these are right, if not, my fault)

Sisko: "Too much fun." (He just summed up the ENTIRE episode!)

O'Brien:"That's HIM!"
Odo(I think):"Who?"
(This scene was great mostly because- it wasn't Kirk! Grin, guffaw.)

Dax on Classic uniforms:"And women wore less."

One of the TI guys on Kirk:"The man was a menace."

Worf on Tribbles:"They are... Detestable creatures."

Okay... A REALLY minor nit.. Wouldn't Kirk and the others have heard Dax and Sisko in the storage bin? They were close, and the tricorders were beeping..

Also: I don't remember the triangular symbols on the ventral surface (bottom) of the Enterprise's saucer.... (Nor the flashing lights on the ship's nacelles.. But I haven't seen a Classic episode for a few months...)

I think Paramount handled the old Klingons very well in this episode..... I mean, what else were they supposed to do? Ignore the problem? It was worth it for the "Those are KLINGONS?" line.

Also: IF raktijeno (spelling?) is a Klingon drink, why do Kira and Odo drink it? When were they introduced to it? (I never saw the first few seasons of DS9- maybe this isn't a nit!)

Is it just me, but did the Tribbles look, well, fake? (Note from Phil: Tribbles always looked fake!)

Still, even with this episode's (very minor) flaws, it WAS the best and funniest in a long time... Maybe EVER. (Although the Q episodes are always great.)

One more, How did Sisko and Co. get Classic uniforms, tricorders, and communicators? Did they just replicate them? Do all Federation starships have programs for old gear? Hmm?

Adam Farlinger: Good episode!

At the very beginning of the episode, a ship docks with the station. A very strange coincidence that it looks a lot like a TOS-style shuttlecraft.

So, we finally have acknowledgement on DS9 that there *is* a new Enterprise out there.... the Temporal Investigations guys mention that there've been *6* starships named Enterprise. *

Great Line: (Bashir) "I'm a doctor, not a historian."

Wouldn't Odo's appearance have been obvious? I mean, sure, the people of that time saw all kinds of aliens, but he'd be kinda unfamiliar to everyone he met. Someone should have asked him what race he was. Then again, maybe the Dominion is pulling a Borg and conquering the Federation in its past. (; Can't wait for that sneak preview of STFC next week, BTW...

Those Temporal Investigations guys must be blind... they didn't see any Tribbles while on the station? At the end of the episode, they seemed to be pretty widespread... or at least localized to Quark's (gotta love the one on his head!). And who could stop at DS9 without going to Quark's? (; (Note from Phil: I was surprised at how calmly Quark was taking their existence. After all, they do consume a lot of food and he does run a bar . . .)

Boy, sensor technology has really advanced since TOS... not only were their sensors unable to detect a ship decloaking for 3 seconds, but they couldn't even detect a bomb that went off just outside their ship! Wouldn't that be something worth noticing? Come to think of it, they never noticed that they had a number of intruders aboard, either!

Personal Opinion: This episode was better done than Voy's Sulu episode. At least the tips of the hat weren't constant this time!

Donald Carlson of Birmingham, AL: Wow! I nominate this episode as the unofficial 80th classic episode of Trek!

Ah, but there are some nits -- Phil was right, the turbolift doors and the medical tricorder operated noticably slower than on TOS. I also noted the sound of the doors contained an extra hissing sound to cover for the longer opening and closing times. The makers also enhanced the sound buttons made to include a electronic clicking noise that wasn't present in TOS.

The biggest nit concerns the Klingons. Okay, they were genetically engineered to look more like humans, and Worf was a bit chagrined about the whole thing. But wouldn't the Klingons notice Worf (who was clearly one of the "true" Klingons, appearance wise) sitting right there out in the open? For that matter, wouldn't the appearance of a species until then unknown (i.e. Worf) draw some kind of attention? For that matter, wouldn't Odo draw some looks of his own?

Darvin sure looks good for a human that's about 135 years old, no? True, he isn't really human, but even Klingons get old, and 135 years ain't nothing to sneeze at. Look at how old McCoy looked in Encounter at Farpoint.

The scene with Sisco, Kirk and Spock at the end -- wasn't this from Mirror, Mirror? (Note from Phil: Yup!)

The only bad section of digital imaging I noticed was when Kirk passes in front of O'Brien to talk to Chekov. Look at O'Brien's face -- it looks somewhat distorted, not 3 dimensional. Other than that, the makers did a remarkable job of inserting new footage into the old. Lighting, particularly, was matched perfectly.

One final note -- interesting how the difference in background music in this episode from the original gave the scenes a different feel. The originals felt more cartoon-like, more "hey, what a wacky episode" feeling.

Rene Charbonneau: I really enjoyed this episode. Anyway, on the matter of the scene where Worf implies that there is a reason that the Klingons of the 23rd Century look different from those of the 24rth, that still doesn't explain Kahless. In the TNG which featured his clone, he had the more modern Klingon look, but in the Classic episode "The Savage Curtain", he had the old Klingon look. Nice try, DS9. (Note from Phil: Same problem for Kang, Koloth and Kor!)

J. Annelin Grand Centre, AB: I want to nit myself, in my earlier comments about the ships and station being computer images well i was wrong. I watched the Making of Trials and Tribble-ations on the Sci-fi channel and they used models. I guess it's a tribute to the modelmakers when their models look just as good as computer images. Also after watching the episode again, Dax "dated" McCoy while he was a student, before he was a doctor so Trills have been in contact with Earth for a long time.

I have another nit to point out:

The T.I. guys were precise almost all the time, for example when Sisko mentioned the stardate of the encounter they said it 105 years, 1 month and 12 days ago, a Friday. But at the end they told Sisko he'd have their report in about a month? About a month? Doesn't that seem odd for people who deal with time so precisely?

Rene Charbonneau: About Mark David Bowman's comment about the original Enterprise using blinking lights while we use computer graphics 300 years earlier, Voyager's episode this week almost came up with an explanation, but then ruined it. They find out that our computer age has been affected by the 29th Century timeship, which explains all the recent advancements that we have made in the past 30 years. But, then they ruin that by saying that this is part of Voyager's history, and thus is "supposed " to happen, (and thus part of the original Enterprise the blinking lights are still a mystery...)

Adam Farlinger: The Klingons destroyed the Tribble homeworld because they were a nuisance. But how could the tribbles have reached Klingon space in the first place? Worf made it sound like they all but invaded the Klingons... but I can't see the Tribbles having been capable of interstellar travel. They don't appear to be intelligent, so chances are, they couldn't have built a ship in the first place - never mind that they don't have any arms or legs or other kind of appendages with which to be able to do so. So some third party (maybe one of the Klingons themselves?) must have introduced them to the homeworld... bet s/he died a very painful and dishonourable death! Maybe this isn't a nit, then...

And how did the Tribbles end up on DS9 in the first place? Whoever brought them aboard should be used for target practice for the Defiant's phasers and quantum torpedoes!

Harvey H. Kitzman, Jr.: I've got some comments, questions, and nits about Trials and Tribblations for you. I loved the episode and thought it was well done.

The Lovelies:

The shots of the Enterprise and the Klingon ship orbiting K-7. Did they build new models for the show? (Note from Phil: Yup!)

The sets looked great considering they had to make them over again from video.

The DS9 crew in uniforms from TOS (except for Dax's, O'Brien's and Bashir's hair). (Note from Phil: I thought the hair was great! Love that beehive!)

Great last shot of the tribbles at Quark's (especially the one on his head).

Mirror-Mirror clip having Kirk talk to Sisko.

Sisko tapping his uniform insignia.


MAJOR GALACTIC WIMP OUT regarding the differences in the way Klingons looked then. All Worf had to say was that for some reason they were surgically altered to hide thier true appearance from others. He might have considered it a dishonorable attempt at deception by the Empire.

Is Arne Darvin one of the wimpiest Klingon's or what? I doubt he could survive one fight with anyone or survive Klingon warrior training.

Why were Worf and Odo dressed like Cyrano Jones? (Note from Phil: It's the uniform of the Galactic Traders Union!)

The lack of 23rd Century knowledge in Bashir's uniform color comment and thinking someone else was Kirk and O'Brien not knowing anything about 23rd century machinery. If he is so advanced, he should have been able to fix things with his eyes closed. Isn't there a history course at the Academy? (Note from Phil: Well . . . it was a century back, technology comes a long way in a century.)

Worf and O'Brien never made a comment about meeting Scotty on the 1701-D. Why?

I find it hard to believe that the Klingon's would commit their entire war machine to destroying the tribble homeworld. (Note from Phil: "Do they still sing songs about the Great Tribble Hunt?")

Did bringing the tribbles to the 24th century break a Starfleet rule?

Don't get me wrong, I really loved the episode. However, since thanks to you, I can't watch one without looking for nits.

Chris George: All right, I'll admit it, great episode, even IF I'm not a big fan of TOS. I didn't have high hopes seeing the preview, but they did an excellent job.

Nice work on the "Forrest Gump" effects of inserting DS9 into TOS. Actually, even though it has been described as that, IMHO the effect was 100% better in this episode than in "Forrest Gump."

I just want to comment on a few of J. Annelin's nits. First, O'Brien is, as last as I've heard, the equivalent of a Chief Petty Officer. Perhaps unless you are a ranking officer who has attended SF Academy, you wouldn't have had to study antique Starfleet equipment?

David D. Porter: How many times do you think the DTI fellas have heard that 'on time' pun?

Does it seem odd that there wouldn't be at least a Vedek on Defiant, to safeguard the orb?

I can tell you from experience, when you're with a crew every day, even if there are over four hundred of them, you soon recognize every face. Strangers are easily spotted--especially when they're together.

Come on, Odo! Klingon coffee, in *this* time period?

Commentary: excellent model work, and good job with the faux-sixties hairstyles.

"It's a long story," is a *real* cop-out. They can do better than that!

Bashir beats up a Klingon? Bashir??

How in the world does one get a bomb into a tribble? (Note from Phil: The tribble did seem a bit stuffed!)

FTQ: McCoy attended Ole Miss. Don't forget!

That stuff the tribbles are eating in the bin looks more like gravel than grain.

There's another BILC: what gave the tribble and tricorder motion relative to the station?

Lawrence Miller of Hopkins, MN: This is why DS9 is one of the better Star Trek incarnations - the details!

I loved the old style fighting on the station - only thing missing was Bashir using a Kirk Karate chop to the neck!

For the Nit about the flashing lights and dials - I always look at that as a fashion statement of the Federation at that time - a big retro craze was going on - besides, touchpads just aren't as dramatic, and who is more dramatic then Kirk?

I half expect Dax to light up a smoke and sigh - she really enjoys her men!

The local TV station had some problems, and reran the scene were they first beam aboard the Enterprise. My first thought "Uh oh, Time Loop!" I really, really watch too much Star Trek.

I hope the special effects guys got a party for all they did - this was just fabulous!

Robert J. Woolley: Just one comment about what *I* would have done if *I* were writing this episode. I would have had Dax and Sisko sitting in the grain storage bin right over (or beside) the hatch that Kirk is unable to open. They would hear somebody fiddling with the door, realize that they will be caught, and hold the door shut. This would explain nicely the otherwise odd fact of Kirk not being able to open that first door and having to go to the second one.

As for nits, I have a hard time believing that the tricorders can only be used to check the tribbles for a bomb one at a time. Also, aren't they being rather careless with tossing them around so harshly, poor little things? And finally, they aren't apparently making any effort to separate the ones they've already checked--they just throw them back on the floor, meaning that they may check some several times.

In one of the original series episodes (sorry, I'm having a brain freeze about which one it was, and I'm at work without my books), Uhura notices a crewman she's never seen before. This makes sense. With a crew of a few hundred that you run into daily for years, you may not know every name, but you'd probably know every face. So why don't 4 new faces on the Enterprise raise any suspicions? It seems likely that there would be a standing security order to report anybody you don't recognize, especially in sensitive areas like engineering--and the *bridge*, f'r heaven's sake!

Although the men may prefer the female outfits from an earlier time, I bet that Sisko, at least, is glad to return to his standard uniform. It appears to conceal a growing abdomen better than the old style does!

Bryan Foster: I tried not to find nits in such a well done episode, but a few snuck through...

When Sisko and Dax sneak into the storage compartment to find dead tribbles amongst the grain, Kirk opens the door and hundreds of tribbles fall out the door. How come some of the grain didn't sneak out? I don't buy the "tribbles ate all the grain" excuse...there were still bits of grain when Sisko and dax were searching for the tribble bomb.

Why did Dax remove her spots to "blend in" if one of her previous hosts had met McCoy?

Why did Bashir have to grease his hair down? Are 23rd century doctors not allowed to have curly hair? Obrien didn't change his hair... (Note from Phil: Wasn't O'Brien's greased down too?)

Not a nit, just a question...What is poor Worf going to do while millions of tribbles are running amok on DS9? Probably take the Defiant and find a nice big Borg ship to attack....

Lee E. Pattersom of Chicago: What can I say? I agree with you: incredible! One thing that struck me with megaton force was Dax's comment about Bones. HE WENT TO OLE MISS!!! That is so awesome! When this episode airs later tonight in Oxford, MS, I'll bet half the town screams simultaneously! We're part of Star Trek history now!!! I'm excited, of course, because I received my M.A. in Classics from Ole Miss this past May and my wife is currently finishing her undergrad work there. There is possible nit here though. I ran the tape several times, and it seems like Dax is saying "Old Miss." That "d" is barely audible, so I'm not sure. If she does, then that's a nit because no one, but no one where I come from says "Old Miss." It's definitely "Ole Miss."

Matthew Murray:Given all the stuff that has happened on DS9 alone (the Bell riots, Roswell, etc.), isn't a bit strange that we've never heard from Temporal Investigations before? (Note from Phil: Obviously, it happened when we weren't looking! ;-)

Also, Sisko says that the orb they found was the Orb of Time. Unfortunately, according to the pilot episode, the aliens in the wormhole have no concept of time. Therefore, it doesn't make much sense that there would be an orb for it, does there?

Tim King and Sarah Lang of Naperville, IL: One thing we couldn't help but notice when we watched "Trials and Tribble-ations", is that Dax wiped out her spots before boarding Kirk's Enterprise. We figured that the Federation may not have encountered the Trill in that time period, so it made some sense. Obviously though, they DID know about the Trill in the 23rd Century, because Dax's previous host had an affair with McCoy when he was still a student! Possibly the Trill were on Earth watching human society without humanity's knowledge of who they really were, much like Guinan did in "Time's Arrow", or else, at that point, the Trill still had forehead ridges like Odan did in "The Host", so therefore they wouldn't know what those little spots were about. Maybe the Trill, like the Klingons, went through a little change they don't discuss with outsiders somewhere in their history!

Shane Tourtellotte: Why didn't Enterprise notice Defiant briefly decloaking when old Darvin beamed off? Did it just happen to be in that repeating three second sensor blackout O'Brien mentioned later?

Enterprise is shown in a much closer orbit around K7 than in 'Trouble'.

On Defiant, Sisko says Kirk is due to expose young Darvin in 18 hours. This is before Cyrano Jones brings his first tribble aboard K7, and we all know 3 days passed between that moment and the storage compartment tribble-anche scene, then some more time before Kirk confronts young Darvin. Sisko's off by over 2 days.

Wasn't it kinda dim to bring Worf along in the first place? The Federation isn't cozy with the Klingons in this era. He would draw suspicion -- lots, since he's a 'modern' Klingon.

Could the Klingons really have exterminated the tribble species by the end of the 23rd century? A lot of these tribbles were in Federation space(K7, Spacedock in STIII), inaccessible to Klingon warrior bands given the diplomatic relations of the age.

Why the new intercom sound on Kirk's chair? Its only apparent purpose is to give me something to nitpick. (Smirk.)

The quadrotriticale in the storage bin looks very similar to blue aquarium gravel -- so similar as to be identical. Some grain merchant pulled a scam on the Feds, not to mention the tribbles. Turns out they really died of indigestion.

One minor CGI gripe. When Kirk questions Chekov about the fight, O'Brien is in Kirk's shadow, and looks very flat. I briefly thought he was a cardboard cutout, until he blinked.

Cydney Williams: I haven't had this much fun with an episode in a long time. Everything was so funny! My only nit is Barry Waddle, the Klingon spy, telling the crew that a bomb is hidden in a tribble. But I guess its o.k.; he's just the type of mustache-twirling, talkative villian that would do something like that.

O.K. this is my last nit: Why did they cut out the scene, where Scotty tells Kirk why he threw the first punch? The expression on Kirk's face when he realizes that Scotty did not fight when his captain was insulted, but when the "Enterprise" in demeaned is absolutely priceless. (Note from Phil: Only so much time in an episode!)

Erin Hunt of High Point, NC: This episode of DS9 didn't have as much footage from the Classic episode or as much interaction with the principal Classic characters as I would have liked, but it had about as much as I expected. The "integration process" has to be expensive, and they only have so much footage to try to fit to their purposes. All in all, it was a fun and at times funny episode, even if it got a little frustrating seeing so little of the main characters. Thumbs up.(Someday computers will allow us to completely manipulate sounds and images and then we'll see something!)

I also like the way they took that scene where Kirk has tribbles falling out of the storage compartment on him one by one, and "explained" it by having Dax and Sisko in the compartment, scanning tribbles and throwing them out the hatch one by one. I don't know if this holds true for all of them, but once Dax throws one tribble out the hatch and we see an identical one fall on Kirk.

Nits: They cut some dialogue out of the scene where Kirk finds tribbles in his coffee and chicken sandwich when there was no logical reason for that dialogue to be lost. Also, Sisko takes the place of a lieutenant handing a PADD to Kirk in the original episode. What happened to the original lieutenant? Did Sisko pull him aside and ask to be allowed to deliver the PADD instead?

Brian Spangler, Philadelphia PA: Very great seamless integration effects!! I only nitpick it because I like it so much. If I didn't like it, I wouldn't even talk about it.

Those Temporal investigators are definitely Dragnet-like. One of them even mentions Friday.

Dax mentions that Koloth was trading insults with Kirk but he never did. He did insult Kirk behind his back in the bar though.

One thought keeps occurring to me in many episodes like this. If all the officers are in the Defiant, who's running the station? (Maybe Quark, he's been there the longest. :) ) (Note from Phil: This is a topic that I raise quite frequently in the just released DS9 Guide!)

Another example of Earth bias: Worf smells "earthy."

What exactly is this Klingon coffee raktachino made of, rats and capuccino? :P

If this entire episode was Sisko recounting the events, how could he know of private conversations between O'Brien and Bashir?

After seeing Worf being beaten up so many times as Security officer on TNG, he finally gets the better of someone and it turns out to be another Klingon.

I noticed that the Voyager episode that paralleled the action of ST:VI used special effect footage from the movie but not the dialouge. This episode of DS9 seemed to do exactly the opposite and refilm the model footage. The Klingon ship and K-7 were never shown that large in the original. The models just weren't large enough.

I'm shocked at what the creators are trying to say about Dax's reputation! It must have been Dax's first host that dated McCoy (can anybody confirm that?) and she couldn't remember him at first? I remember the first few people I dated, why couldn't she? Is this supposed to be a variation of the old joke:"Am I your first?" "You look famailiar." (Note from Phil: I'd look it up but I am running seriously late today!)

That dialouge of Dax remembering McCoy also cleans up a nit in the original episode. If you listen REALLY closely in the background, you can barely hear McCoy mistakenly say the Tribbles are bisexual.

When Sisko is searching for the booby-trapped Tribble, he seems to checking them at random then throwing them over his shoulder at random. Shouldn't his searching be a little more organized? But that does explain why, in the original episode, the tribbles began falling out of the hatch one by one.

On board the Defiant, during the mission briefing, they mention that station security isn't as tight as a starship. Do they mean the starship where _everybody_ has access to the bridge?

Did anyone else notice that the person O'Brien kept mistaking for Kirk was Kirk's stunt double?

Kevin Weiler: I just watched this episode and I can't tell you how cool it was. The way the crew interacted with the original Neterprise was just great! I have a few great things to point out in the episode. The scene where Sisko talks to Kirk about how it is an honor to serve with him is just remarkable. It looked so real! One last thing, bravo with the fight scene.

Murray Leeder: Wow! Wow! Wow! That's all I can say about this episode. Not a moment that isn't perfect (save the inavoidable nits). I loved that bit where O'Brien thought that the nameless nodescript lieutenant was Kirk.

Raktajino does not seem like a Klingon word.

Why didn't they surgically alter Odo?

fter they found that the bomb was amid the tribbles in the bin, why didn't Sisko and Dax just beam out all of the tribbles. I'm sure the Defiant's interior sensors could find the bomb very quickly.

Also, this episode establishes that you cannot transport while the ship is cloaked. Hmmm, that's funny, didn't they do it all the time in Star Trek IV?

Clearly an agreement was reached with the Romulans have been reached letting the Defiant use the cloak in the Alpha Quadrant.

Surely Arne Darvin isn't his real name. Maybe when you become a Klingon spy, you have to give up your old name for good.

Tribbles are an asexual species, meaning that they reproduce alone, and also that, barring mutation, the offspring are always carbon-copies of their parent. However, they seem to show a noteworthy amount of variation.

Shira T. Karp: This episode was good. This episode was great.

I give up. There are two separate races in the Star Trek universe: the Trill, whom we know and love, and the Pt'Ril (with "p" as in "pneumonia"). The Trill have been known to the Federation for centuries, enabling one of Dax's former hosts to make out with a young Leonard H. McCoy while on Earth judging a gymnastics competition and Curzon to be one of the top Federation diplomats of his time. The Pt'Ril are quite new to the Federation, unlike the Trill, the Pt'Ril cannot use transporter beams, have ridges instead of cool spots, and have more parasitic than symbiotic relationships with their humanoid hosts. This is the only way I can rationalize all the Trill nits between "The Host" and most of DS9.

A nice touch: Darvin poses as a dealer in gemstones, kevas, and trilium, a nice little reference to the OS episode "Errand of Mercy," in which Spock poses as a dealer in kevas and trilium.

Richard V. Nawrocki, Buffalo, NY: When the 'Defiant' (I *assume* it was the 'Defiant', and not the 'Enterprise', because it was new-style effects) beamed the Tribble-bomb off of 'K-7', they didn't go through the trouble (obviously, because it was an emergency situation) to wait for that three-second "security gap" so as to remain undetected by the 'Enterprise's' sensor array. Presumably, this means that the 'Defiant' de-cloaked and was there for any alert crewperson on the bridge to see! (One could perhaps argue that the 'Defiant' need not decloak when neither source nor destination is the 'Defiant' itself, for some technobabblsh reason; however, the 'Defiant' nevertheless *did* wait for the three-second gap to beam O'Brian and Bashir from the 'Enterprise' to 'K-7'...)

Matt Nelson of Spokane, WA: I think they moved around some of the fight scene when they updated it for the new footage. (Not that I'm complaining, but there were a few things that seemed to me happened earlier/later/whatever in the original.) But I realize they pry had to do it to fit our beloved DS9 guys in there. Again, I gotta say, GREAT EPISODE! Woo-hoo! My compliments to the creators! (Here's hoping they beam the tribbles into Worf's quarters! =))

Mario Bruzzone: Just an idea on what to do with the tribbles they brought back from K7. I got the idea from "The Trouble With Tribbles," but here it is-Go into the Gamma Quadrant with the Defiant, and beam the Tribbles to the Jem Hadar.

Steve Stark: Just watched "Trials and Tribble-ations" and I am much confused. In it, Bashir asks O'Brien if he took a course when he was at Starfleet Academy. Isn't O'Brien an enlisted man, at most a petty officer promoted to chief warrant officer? Are there only officers in Starfleet? Is the Federation's entire military educated in San Fransisco with the lowest rank possible being ensign? Perhaps, Bashir is so stuck up that he can't even conceive of the fact that a person is not an Academy graduate.

Johnson Lai: Speaking of the cloak, why can't the Defiant beam through it? On every other cloaked ship--be it Klingon or Romulan--they could initiate transport with the cloak still up. So why can't the Defiant?

But then you have to look at the scene where Odo and Worf beam back with Darvin. The lighting is dimmed, suggesting that the ship is still cloaked as they materialized on the transporter pad. So is it or is it not possible for the Defiant to transport over the cloak? (Note from Phil: The lights had probably burned out on the transport pads. This happens alot with Klingons for some reason. See the NextGen episode, "Sins of the Father."

11/18/96 Update

Murray Leeder: Tribbles really get everywhere. Maybe one actually wound up in someone's clothes of something, and hence was brought to the 24th century accidentally.

I'm forced to wonder why the Cardies gave up the Orb of Time. Think of all the nasty things you could do with that do-dad!

Perish the though that they could have maybe, INTERROGATED DARVIN!

Lee Lorenz: Where do I begin?

On Harvey Kitzman Jr's comments about bringing Tribbles into the 24th century... Kirk and Co. brought a whale from the 20th century into the 23rd, so why not? Besides, with the Klingons on the warpath, all you have to do is dump a load of Tribbles on Klingon-occupied worlds and watch the fun!

On *ALL* the comments about Odo and Worf's appearance and the "lack" of notice on K-7... think about it! Aliens abound. Why should two be noticed. And as for the Klingon's failure to notice Worf, If they were altered in appearance, they wouldn't want to clue in others that Worf was a Klingon, no would they?

David D. Porter comments that the Tribble and Tricorder shouldn't have motion when beamed out into space... Sure they would! K-7 had gravity, which would give the objects inertial force downward. The tribble might exert a different inertial force against the tricorder. This would cause the motion.

Somebody mentioned Worf's disdain for Tribbles and that he might opt to chase after the Borg... hey! Imagine the Borg assimilating Tribbles? (BORG ALERT) We are Tribbles of Borg... We will assimilate your grain. Cuteness is inevitable.

Murray Leeder said: "Raktajino does not seem like a Klingon word" I have a hard time imagining Klingons sitting around a coffee house, sipping coffee and reading a book!! Perhaps that's where all the "altered" 23rd Century Klingons go (they were pretty wimpy back then)

Lastly, a true-blue nit... Did anybody notice the diamond-shaped window in the bar fight scene? You can EASILY tell the old from new scenes, sine the window is is different between them. In the newer scenes, the little rectangles are different sizes, and it has a "rainbow" tint.

Which brings me to a more minor nit. When Sisco and Dax are watching Kirk and Spock in the hallway, the wall behind them is tinged in a rather odd pinkish-purple from some unseen lighting. I don't recall EVER seeing this color in TOS in any episode!!

Nick Oven: These are mostly answers to peoples nits, but here's the nit I found.

The door for K7's bar that was built for DS9 looks red.. The door that was used in the TOS episode was more yellow. You can see this when odo is walking into the bar for the first time and then when bashir is getting a chair and Scotty and Chekov walk in.

My answers for people's questions/complaints: Someone commented that the Tribbles looked rather fake.. It seems that they used more white/gray tribbles and not enough brown ones.....

Someone also said that the TOS enterprise/space station/klingon ship wasn't as big on the original episode because the models were smaller. Actually, the original model of the Enterprise is 11 feet long! The one they used in DS9 is 5 1/2 feet long.

Doesn't the klingon O'brien was fighting with look strangely like an Oompa-Loompa (Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Facory)??!?!?

Christopher Pope: We still don't know just what happened to the Klingons between the original series and the movies. But I have a theory.... In the first TNG guide, you discuss the end of "The Chase," which suggests that Evolution follows a path somehow embedded in the DNA. Assuming our scientists are wrong and the humanoid was right--maybe the evolution moves along in little time-released spurts (as with Bob Canada's phasers). So the Klingons are going about their business about a year before ST:TMP, and when they wake up one morning, all of a sudden, they've all got bumpy foreheads! As for Kahless, perhaps the DNA is time-sensitive even when used for cloning.

Tim King, Naperville, IL: Since many people seemed confused about the nature of raktajino on the "Trials and Tribble-ations" brash reflections section, let me set the record straight. The drink, to my knowledge, was introduced in the first season DS9 episode "Dax", and was immediately referred to by Bashir as "Klingon coffee", being that some ways of being kept awake all night are better than drinking the stuff, according to what he said to Dax.

Matthew Murray: Doesn't it seem just a little bit odd that the Temporal Investigations rule about StarFleet officers not interfering with historical events should be rule number 137, or whatever it was? If I were in charge of Temporal Investigations, I would think that would be rule number one!

Paul Steele of Springfield, VA: Just a couple of comments regarding the comments about this spectacular episode!

My first comment is in reference to Dr. Bashir's question to O'Brien about taking courses at Starfleet Academy. All to often we compare Starfleet Academy to our present day military academies which are for officer's only. We fail to recognize that other schools are referred to as academies. Furthermore, the term academy may refer generically to the facility not the degree curriculum. For example, even in our present military there are school facilities that offer different courses for enlisted ranks and officers. My personal experience is with the Army's Aviation Center at Fort Rucker, Alabama. That is where I received my flight school training and where many enlisted soldiers learn to fix and maintain the aircraft. But when we speak of our schooling to one another, we say things like "I took a course at Rucker."

My next comment is about the apparent technology mismatch between the centuries in question. Specifically, I'm referring to the blinking lights and large knobs of TOS versus the touch pads of TNG et al. I have a plausible explanation. While in its relative infancy, Starfleet wanted to ensure that all space vessels could be manned by all species that were currently members (and possibly projected to become members) of the Federation. After several years of grueling research the engineers and scientists agreed on the interface elements seen in TOS. Although it was by no means the most efficient interface for humans (and even most humanoids) there were several non-humanoid species (some with very large digits and poor visual acuity) that appreciated the effort. Years later, however, it became apparent that these races (for various reasons) did not participate in Starfleet as much as had been anticipated. Therefore, in an effort to place efficiency above political correctness, Starfleet adopted the touchpad style interface.

Robert Cook of Anacortes, WA: A couple of anti-nits:

Rene Charbonneau comments that we see Kahless as a TOS Klingon in a TOS episode (The Savage Curtain). In that episode, Kahless is a re-creation, drawn from Kirk and Spock's minds. They would picture Kahless as looking like the Klingons they had encountered, not as he actually looked. This doesn't explain Kang, et al, of course.

Adam Farlinger asks how Tribbles got into Klingon space- at the end of the original Trouble With Tribbles, Scotty beams all of the Tribbles off the Enterprise and onto Koloth's ship. If just one of those Tribble managed to survive the trip back to Klingon space.

Johnson Lai: DS9 now has the ultimate weapon against any Klingon invasion! All they need to do is to place a Tribble in every room and the Klingons will never show up again! And since the Tribbles are supposed to be extinct, it'll be quite a surprise for the Klingon invaders. Only a joke. Ha ha ha. Very funny.

Joseph Pintar: I want to take this opportunity to credit the creators on the DS9 episode Trials and Tribbilations. They almost seamlessly put the cast of Deep Space Nine into the Classic Trek's Trouble With Tribbles. It was also nice for the cast of DS9 to lighten up after more than a few serious episodes.

Shirley Kolb of Fulton, NY: I LOVED this episode! I thought the work they did with the models was breathtaking and the way they integrated the old and new was amazing. In response to several people who were asking why Dax covered up her spots: even if the Federation had had previous contact with Trills, if one showed up as an officer on the Enterprise I think he/she would be pretty noticable as an intruder. I think Odo and Worf were able to get away with being "different" because on K-7, there were lots of inter-galactic traders from different alien species coming through all the time, and security was not as strong. By the way, I read the Walter Koenig (Chekov for you non-Classic fans) said he got paid 8 times as much for them to have the right to use his image as he was originally paid to do the episode!

John Latchem: So the "history buff" Bashir from "The Homecoming" is now "A doctor, not a historian?"

Rene Charbonneau of Vanier, Ontario: At one point in the episode, Sisko asks the crew if they know where Dravin beamed to. Worf responds that they don't, because Darvin erased the transporter logs. Shouldn't there be some sort of security password to erase a transporter log? Why do they keep transporter logs if they can be erased so easily by anyone? (Note from Phil: And, of course, Darvin was careful to beam out at exactly the right time so the Enterprise didn't see him.)

11/25/96 Update

Bruce Felkins of Houston, Tx: Are you getting the feeling that Jadzia is going through some sexual resurrgence? Seems like all of the newer episodes have an abundance of sexual imagery focused on her. Maybe the writers couldn't resist enhancing the perception so many fans have already noticed!

Todd Felton: A lot of people who have submitted their reflections on DS9's "Trials and Tribble-ations" seem to think that tribbles are no longer around in the 24th century, and now they are present due to the Defiant's escapade.

However, in Star Trek: Generations, I think it is during the evacuation of the engineering section of the Enterprise-D when we see a child carrying a tribble in his arms. Didn't everybody in your theatre yell "Tribble!" when they saw it? :)

Robert J. Woolley: At the end of the opening segment, Dax and Sisko are able to identify the old Enterprise from its underside only, apparently by just the "NCC-1701" (no bloody, A, B, C, or D!). While this is not impossible, it stretches credibility that 24th-century officers have the ID numbers of the 23rd-century fleet memorized. (Note from Phil: Ah! But this is . . . the Enterprise!)

In Odo's first bar scene, his close-up shows him sitting with his knees apart, feet flat on the floor. When the camera changes to a longer shot with people entering the bar, he instantaneously has his legs crossed, with one foot in the air. It appears that his clothes change color, too, though this is less obvious.

In a later scene, Bashir picks up a chair to move to another table. In the first shot, he lifts it by the arms of the chair, but when the camera shot changes, he's suddenly holding it by the chair's back.

Remember how Spock once heard a *sotto voce* compliment McCoy paid him on the bridge? ("Why, thank you, doctor!") Why wouldn't he similarly be able to hear the whispered conversation between Dax and Sisko about scanning the ship?

When Sisko locates the bomb, he orders Kira to lock onto his tricorder signal and beam it into space. Strangely, he then moves very slowly to put his tricorder under the tribble. I suppose he is trying to avoid detonating the bomb by jostling it. But there is a ten-second delay between when Kira says "acknowledged" and when the beaming starts. How did she know how long to wait? Wouldn't it have been more reasonable for Sisko to put the tribble on the tricorder *before* ordering the beam-out, so as to avoid having his hands accidentally beamed out with the bomb?

And one nit that I looked for carefully but didn't find. I thought it would be easy to catch a discrepancy between the line-up of men in Kirk's interrogation, and who is shown walking out of the room. But I was impressed--somebody thought of this, and the number, shirt color, and order of the men coming out of the room exactly matches how they were lined up. Bravo for details!

Daniel B. Case: Great episode! All I can say! The creators made classic Trek alive again for one magical hour. Gene would have loved it!

And yes, we can add this to the Classic Trek canon. But ... it would be the 81st episode, not the 80th (that honor would have to go to "The Cage," now shown as part of the standard TOS syndication package).

My favorite part was O'Brien and Bashir mistaking Ensign Freeman (once again, the creators left out the bit of dialogue where Kirk chews everybody out which mentions Freeman's name) for Kirk. As you may or may not be aware, David Gerrold (who does appear in this episode, as the gray-haired security guard petting a tribble in the corner) wrote the Freeman part for himself. However, he looked too young, so Shatner's stand-in got the part, making this yet another delightfully clever in-joke.

Great Line: "And women wore less ..."

Now, as for O'Brien not being an officer and taking courses at Starfleet Academy:

1) TNG's "The Drumhead" explicitly establishes that there are both enlistees and officers in Starfleet. DS9's "Armageddon Game" also supports that. TOS's "Space Seed" also has a scene where Khan and his minions are suffocating Kirk and everyone else on the bridge. Kirk is making a final log entry in which he enters commendations for all present giving their full ranks. He refers to "Lt. Cmdr. Scott, Lt. Cmdr. Uhura ..." et al and "Technician" someone. If this guy had an officer's rank, Kirk would have used it. Gene did want all crewmembers to be officers originally, but that never held on.

2) So it's not outside of the realm of possibility for O'Brien to have done some studying at Starfleet Academy. If he's an enlistee, a "chief petty officer," charged with supervising the Enterprise's transporters, it makes sense for Starfleet to send him somewhere for training. Certainly he could have done some of that training at Starfleet Academy, without necessarily being a graduate (Or he could have taken some courses there during that mysterious stretch of time when he was apparently a lieutenant ...)

And since when are Klingons too macho to drink any kind of coffee? I'd like to go out with that person, buy him a couple of shots of espresso ristretto and ask if he'd like to reconsider that assessment. "Now there's a drink for a man ..." as Mr. Scott would say.

Also, another in-joke: Bashir's hairstyle. It looks to me like Roddenberry's.

Also, as for the Orb of Time: This device is perplexing. I can understand the wormhole aliens building such a device, as it might not have the same effect on them that it would on us. Yet why wouldn't all the Orbs do this, then? I thought their powers were relatively similar -- they all induce the flashbacks/visions that we see in "Emissary" and "The Circle."

Samuel Lawrence: Before I begin to nit, let me just say that this episode was OUTSTANDING.

The effects were nearly seamless and the redone Enterprise/K-7 shots were simply amazing. (I missed the preview, but the Paramount press release led me to believe that that they were going to use even the original FX, so I was pleasantly surprised to see the Enterprise in this episode as she was meant to be seen). Since our local UPN affiliate here in southeast Michigan hasn't broadcast any Classic episodes regularly since about 1990 or so, this episode was like returning home after an extended abscence.

Unfortunately, I've been watching ST and reading the Guides for so long that I nitpick almost habitually now. So, even in this great episode, I did find a few things...

A little counter-nit: The model of the Enterprise constructed for this episode IS faithful to the original. I have built a model of this Enterprise, and all of the contentions features(the rings on the saucer, the triangles on the saucer, etc.) are present. The contentious features can also be clearly seen in the first Star Fleet Technical Manual, by Franz Joseph. Also, through an incredibly lucky and fortuitous coincedence, my family and I were vacationing in Washingtion, D.C. while the Star Trek 25th Anniversary exhibit was in the National Air and Space Museum. NASM had brough the original television model down from the ceiling, restored it to its original form, and put it on display outside the exhibit. I remember studying the model intensely while we were standing in line, and all of the features people never seem to have seen in the original series were there. I think that the discrepencies between the two models can be chalked up to the primitive effects technologies of the 1960's.

On to the nits...

My only major nitpick with this episode was the concept of the "Orb of Time." So, a Klingon spy who's almost 135 years old boards a Federation Starship, defeats a security platoon, and utilizes an ancient Bajoran Orb of Time to go back to the past to try to kill James Kirk. That's just fine, except for the following:

Just how did Darvin figure out how to use the Orb? Presumably, the Cardassians were guarding the thing and classified it. Its not as if they taught Klingon Intelligence officers "Usage of Currently Undiscovered and Unknown Ancient Bajoran Artifacts 101" when Darvin was being trained in the mid 23rd century.

Sisko says that they didn't know it it was the Orb of Time when they went to retrieve it. So, since the Cardassians either didn't know what they had or didn't tell the Federation what it was(see below), just how did Darvin know what the Orb was?

For that matter, how did he find out when the Defiant was coming to get it? If you're moving a priceless art treasure nowadays, you don't broadcast it. On the other hand, the Cardassians could have been using this transfer to get some sort of political gain and put it on the Federation equivialent of CNN. The "well...he's a spy" doesn't work here, since he's not a spy anymore...he's a trader and has been one for some time now.

This whole Orb thing raises a bunch of sticky questions. The biggest one is that if the Orb of Time has the capacity to send people back and forth through time, it is a resource comparable to the Guardian of Forever.

I'm not sure if this has been confirmed or not, but some of the Trek resources(such as Shane Johnson's The Worlds of the Federation and the Star Trek Chronology/Encyclopedia) that the Federation zealously guards the Guardian's location so it cannot be used to undermine the stability of the timeline or be used to subvert the Federation. This is a logical thing for the Federation to do to ensure its existence.

But, this Orb of Time thing seems to have the same capbilities. So, why is the Federation allowing the Bajorans to have it back? If the orb has the capabilities it seems to have, why take such a risk? Why not keep it and secure it someplace? For that matter, why not simply destroy it? They might be able to hide and defend the Forever World, but that's because the Guardian is a stationary object. The Orb is mobile. It can be stolen. The very existence of the Orb is a threat.

Consider this scenario: The Defiant crew gives the Orb back to the Bajoran people. Presumably, they give it to the religous leaders and tell them what it is. The Vedeks use the Orb alter history and make it possible for the Bajorans to rule the Alpha Quadrant, and instead of Vulcan salutes, the citizens of what amounts to a Federation in this horribly misconfigured timeline greet each other by grabbing each other's ears.(Sorry.)

Now, I realize that the creators had to have some way of getting Defiant back in time, and if they hadn't, we wouldn't have seen this wonderful episode. But, they could have included some dialogue at the end saying that the TI guys would be confiscating the Orb to prevent future timeline contamination. This seemingly logical dialogue insertion would have not only prevented me from sending in this nit, but also provided a new continuing plotline, as Kai Winn becomes General Winn, leading the vengeful Bajoran religous leaders tries in an attempt to recapture the Orb to execute their nefarious "Bajoran Galaxy" plan outlined above. (Grin.)

For that matter, the Cardassians must be really stupid. A 135-year old Klingon spy waltzes in and shows that this is the Orb of Time. The Cardassians had to have had the Orb for at least some time before the transfer. Either they never figured out what the Orb was, didn't care, or figured it out but didn't tell anyone. So, ignoring the fact that any such attempt is doomed to fail(see below), if they knew, why don't they keep the orb and try to execute a nefarious "Cardassian Galaxy" plan instead?(On the other hand, they could have tried, but been foiled.)

One wonders if the Orb can take people to the future as well. Since the wormhole aliens have no conception of linear time, this would make sense, as the Orb might not "linearize" time for our friendly realspace Starfleet officers. This raises another, somewhat inevitable question:If the Orb works both ways, why doesn't the crew start their own Psychic Subspace Hotline? (Sorry. I couldn't resist that one. Some things are just too obvious.)

The temporal logic of this show needs a cursory look. Mike and Denise Okuda have stated that time travel stories never stand up under complete scrutiny. The "Time Triad" of Future's End, Tribble-ations and First Contact seem to prove this. In the case of this episode and First Contact, one wonders just what the Borg Queen and Darvin are thinking.(This is what I call the Terminator Dilemma, for obvious reasons). In Darvin's case, he can read history. Since, in the past, James Kirk actually died on Veridian III, he must realize that going to the past to kill Kirk with a tribble is not going to work. Since the events of the past have already happened by the time the future rolls around, Darvin cannot succeed. History says this, and the past has already happened. Traveling to the past to change it is futile. So, why does he even try? This same argument could be applied to First Contact(No spoilers here! Just what I saw in the trailer.) This also could be why the Bajorans get the orb back, because the Federation must figure that since the past has already happened and cannot be changed, then there's no danger in giving the Orb back. I submit that though this may be true, it is still foolhardy from a security standpoint. If an old Klingon spy and, and later Kira(who has only a moderate amount of scientific training) can figure out how to use the orb, then imagine what someone like, say, a Khan or a Lore could do to the timeline. Just because one person cannot do something doesn't mean another also cannot.

On the other hand, if the bad guys are actually smart, then the good guys won't win.

Personally, I feel that these nits all result from a case of They Read the Script sydrome. In this case, the creators must have looked at the story for Future's End and figured that the viewers were lucky to have this much logic with "Tribble-ations."

Having said all of that, though, I'm quite willing to overlook these nits for this episode. In fact, in this case, technobabble concerning time travel would have detracted from the story, and the creators obviously knew it. Seeing the Classic cast again one last time was *well* worth it. One wishes that they would do this again at some point in the future.

Lisa Shock: When Dax and Sisko are in the storage bin, why is blue grain under their feet? Presumably also under them is the hatch that Kirk opened, and if grain is at the bottom of the bin, then he should have been buried up to his chin in grain, not tribbles.

Bashir should be able to tell if he really is his own grandfather. Since he knows that his possible "grandmother" will be in a sickbay at a specific time, he can use the defiants sensors to scan her, type her genetic makeup and determine if a match is present to link the two of them as parents of one of his parents.

Sean Corcoran: In response to some of the nits brought up by other nitpickers:

Adam Farlinger wonders how the tribbles got to DS9. The answer is that Odo brought one back. Remember, he had one in the K-7 bar when Worf came in? He obviously just forgot he had it in the mad dash to find the tribble that was gonna go "boom."

Shane Tourtellotte doesn't realize how the tribbles in the Federation were eradicated by the Klingons, given the 23rd century political conditions. What about the Klingon operatives. Arne Darvin was altered to look human. The rest of the Klingons up until about 2271 looked pretty much human. So as part of the "Great Tribble Hunt", select warriors were chosen to brave the Federation's borders in order to destroy the tribble menance.

The last anti-nit is addressed to Erin Hunt's comment about Sisko getting the PADD signed by Kirk at the end of the episode. Who's to say that this was an official document. Maybe Sisko replicated the PADD on the Defiant, and then kept it as a souvenir. After all, can you imagine how many credits an authentic autograph of the legendary James T. Kirk would be worth?

Dan McClintock of Grand Junction, CO: And I'm surprised other nitpickers didn't pick this one up. During the interogation scene after the bar fight, Kirk is asking questions of the crewmembers. For some reason, Kirk always knows the name of every one of his 400+ crew members... and having him question unidentified crew members would be unheard of, mainly because security would have had to have had the names on hand for the captain to examine.

Murray Leeder: If Klingons do drink coffee, I bet there's a TV show on KBC about a group of twentysomething Klingons who hang out in a Raktajino Shop. It's called "Enemies"! :)

Richard Nacht: Can't say enough about the episode - absolutely fantastic integration. I do have one nit to enter regarding the integration, however.

It begins in the scene where Kirk and Spock enter the commissary. Integrated into the scene are Sisko and Dax at the first table to the left of the entrance (this is not the nit, but notice the great scene when Kirk and Spock enter the room - they both appear to stare directly! at that table, at Dax). Anyway, after Kirk and Spock come to the hypothesis about Tribbles being in the storage compartments on the space station, Kirk walks over to a communication unit to speak with (we assume) Uhura to tell her to contact the space station and advise them that they are beaming down. In TOS, KIRK WALKS OVER TO THE TABLE NEAR THE ENTRANCE, JUST TO THE LEFT OF THE DOOR to access the communication unit. This is the same table where Sisko and Dax are sitting in the DS9 episode. However, in the DS9 episode the camera is SPECIFICALLY ON SISKO AND DAX AT THAT TABLE AND THE COMM UNIT,WHEN KIRK IS SPEAKING TO UHURA (we hear him in the background) AND KIRK IS NOT USING THAT COMM UNIT. Which comm. unit is he using; it is obviously not the one used in the TOS - has the TOS history been changed?

12/01/96 Update

Paul Lalli of Feeding Hills, MA: Ok, I'm a bit confused. Had the events of TaT already occured when we saw TTWT? At first, we would think to say "no" immediately. Obviously, we never saw Sisko and Dax on the bridge, nor did we ever see O'Brien and Bashir in the lineup. However, look at the scene when the tribbles are falling on Kirk's head. As others had pointed out, the reason tribbles kept falling one at a time is because Dax and Sisko kept throwing them out. But we saw these tribbles falling like this originally, in TTWT. So that means Sisko and Dax were in the storage bin when this scene happened the first time too. But if Sisko et al were on the 1701 the whole time, why didn't we see them on the bridge, on K-7, and in the lineup? Either Sisko & Dax were in the bin in TTWT, or the tribbles that they threw were, amazingly enough, the same tribbles that originally fell on Kirk's head the first time, not to mention that they were thrown in the same order, with the same time interval in between tribbles.

Mark David Bowman of Roslyn PA: When they beamed out the tribble why didn't they disable the explosives or beam it out as energy? Wouldn't the station or Enterprise pickup the nearby explosion? This also raises another question: Given the close proximity of the explosion i'm suprised that no one noticed it.

After reading Robert J. Woolley's nit ,when he quoted Scotty saying "No bloody A,B,C or D" it brought up a question I was meaning to ask for a long time. When Scotty asked the computer on TNG to bring up a simulation of the bridge of the Enterprise, how did the computer know which one to recreate scince the original Enterprise had it's bridge completely upgraded in the first Star Trek movie? (Note from Phil: It just knows!)

Murray Leeder: When it is established that Darvin was on K-7, why didn't they stop searching the Enterprise. Surely they could tell that he didn't transport back. (Answer: Less fun!) Obviously this Orb of Time is more the Orb of Space and Time. It sent them through space, after all, in addition to just time.

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Copyright 1996 by Phil Farrand. All Rights Reserved.