Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine - The Visitor


The Onion A.V. has been my first stop for criticism (save videogames) for over a year now. More often than not, they are objective, candid, and full of love and mirth for their pop culture obsessions.

They scored even more points with me this morning for the article linked above, namely for the last actor on the list and the author bravely letting his or her geek out of their pants and giving props to one of the best episodes in Star Trek history: Tony Todd and his work in The Visitor.

Episodes like The Visitor (along with other Trek episodes like The City on the Edge of Forever, The Inner Light, and Far Beyond the Stars) really piss me off. They are, in my humble – and obviously right – opinion, about as good as television drama gets, but they rarely get the attention they deserve because they're science fiction.

It’s episodes like The Visitor that I want to show to friends who don’t get why I love Trek, but I can’t – because I know they wouldn’t have the same effect on them because they have no knowledge of the show or emotional connection with the characters involved. But there’s no better example in the 40 years of Trek of the potent mixture of hope, compassion, and melancholy that runs through the best of Trek than The Visitor, which sets Trek apart and above those Stargate and Battlestar Galactica upstarts.

Plus, no other sci-fi franchise has Iggy Pop as an alien baddie and William Shatner giving drop kicks and double karate chops to guys in cheap rubber suits.

Life doesn’t get much better than that, people.