Hear Ye! Since 1998.
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17
May 98
Sun

Star Trek DS9: Hard Time

I really enjoyed this episode. The situation intrigued me, and from the beginning the effects of the “virtual imprisonment” would be interesting to watch. I thought the episode in general was carried out well, and I only had one gripe. I don’t think they developed O’Brien’s behavioural degradation well enough… it was too sudden in some parts, and not consistent. For example (warning: semi-spoiler here), there is no indication when he blows up at Bashir numerous times, that he is troubled at how he’s changed; but when when he blows up at Molly, the next thing we see is him commiting suicide. He seems to take blowing up at his daughter much more seriously than blowing up at his friend – I mean, he doesn’t even show concern about his broken relationship with Bashir. Then again, it might just be “stored stress” that only came out at the end. The ending was interesting, but I initially felt it wasn’t satisfying (in hindsight, though, I don’t see how they could have ended it any way else, so they actually did do a good job). I guess since they couldn’t rid the extra twenty years in O’Brien’s memory, there will be long-term effects that may have repercussions in later episodes. I guess I’ll just have to wait and see.

This episode left me thinking about it well after I finished watching it. How would you feel if you experienced 20 years in 3 hours? Of course, it’s bordering on the ridiculous (you could put someone through a living hell for 50 years in 7 hours … and then do it again after the first 7 hour session – the ultimate torture device. Just think about it.) Now I thought at first, it’s only in your mind, and nothing has changed – you haven’t aged 20 years. But on second thoughts, you actually endured 20 years of incarceration, so it may actually be worse. Good episode – not overly complex and convoluted, but leaves you thinking.