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Star Trek DS9 - Season 2 - Episode 12

Star Trek DS9 - 2x12 - The Alternate

Originally Aired: 1994-1-9

Odo's mentor arrives on Deep Space Nine intent on resuming his search for Odo's true origin. [DVD]

My Rating - 3

Fan Rating Average - 4.71

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Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Despite how annoying the episode is at times, the establishment of Dr. Mora's character is highly relevant to the overarching story of DS9. You shouldn't skip this one.



Remarkable Scenes
- Odo: "Humanoid death rituals are a hobby of mine. Everybody needs a hobby!"
- Odo, regarding his "constable" nickname: "It's a nickname I barely tolerate."
- Morn appearances; 1. In the first scene.

My Review
Introducing Dr. Mora, the scientist who raised Odo. An exploration of Odo's past is certainly an interesting and expected storyline. This episode features another silicon based life form, the one on the planet Dr. Mora wanted to investigate. The first of this type was discovered in TOS: The Devil in the Dark, and again in TNG: Silicon Avatar. It's nice that the show is being largely consistent about this. The episode goes sour though when it ceases to be about Odo's origins and becomes dominated by the recycled mystery monster attacks the ship (or in this case station) plot cliche. Odo being the evil monster of the week was an interesting concept for a plot twist I suppose, but it didn't play well because it exacerbated the already overplayed tension between Odo and Mora. Had the episode been more about Odo researching his origins and less about Odo's angst it would have been more fun.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From djb on 2009-01-22 at 3:49am:
    Watching this episode, something occurred to me: I can wrap my head around the idea of a shapeshifter, but how can Odo change into objects as small, or more importantly, light as he regularly does? I mean, he could change his density, but he can't change his mass, can he? Like when he's trapped in that box in "Invasive Procedures." He not only becomes smaller, but obviously much lighter, light enough to carry. Either that, or he has hardly any mass, and when he's in a humanoid shape his density goes way down. That doesn't really fly either. What gives?
  • From Miles on 2009-04-06 at 5:11pm:
    Starts out good, but it ultimately fails with odo's monster transformation, which is never brought up ever again. That cool/scary obelisk also serves no further purpose. :(
  • From Bernard on 2011-02-15 at 8:51am:
    7 or 8 for the Odo's 'dad' story, 2 or 3 for the monster story.

    James Sloyan is a veteran of Star Trek by now and produces a good performance as Dr. Mora. Rene Auberjonois also turns in a good performance and these largely buoy the episode up a bit.

    We're well and truly into the 'messy, middle bit' of DS9 season 2. Muddles plots, half thought ideas coming to the surface in the last 4 episodes. Let's hope they get back on track soon!

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