Sunday, October 21, 2012

Rules of Engagement

*** (3 stars out of 5)
Worf returns from a nightmare of a shipload of dead children... to a waking world where he is accused of killing a shipload of children.

Advocate Ch'Pok seeks the extradition of Worf for the death of 441 Klingon civilians. Sisko, rather, explains to the Vulcan judge that the transport de-cloaked right in front of Defiant's guns in combat.

Ch'Pok enters into evidence Dax's testimony that when Worf simulates the historic Klingon Battle of Tong Vey, in the role of conquering Emperor Sompek, he ends it with the historically accurate order to raze the city and kill everyone in it. (Sadly, this is ALSO how Worf ends the holoprogram 'A Day at Seaworld'.)

By Quark's testimony, Worf was hoping his humanitarian mission to help plague victims would turn into a chance to fight Klingons. But, to be fair, Quark also either employs four different dabo girls named Ralidia, Midia, Etheria, and Glidia, or he's terrible with names. And perhaps facts.

O'Brien's recounting (after his 22 years in Starfleet, 235 separate combat situations, and his 9 years friendship with Worf) is of an honourable man who doesn't fire on the unarmed... but Worf IS a little quick on the trigger.

In fact, he's not a great guy to put on the stand. Unless what you would like is for him to punch the lawyer.

Since that IS what the lawyer wanted, it seems clear that Worf fired in anger in the Pentath system. Fortunately, the 441 civilians were never there. It was all an attempt by the Empire to pick a fight and make the Federation look like the bad guy.

"Rules of Engagement" is very watchable courtroom drama. The Klingon lawyer is perfect, no Samuel T. Cogley here today. Another stage in the collapse of good will between two cultures.

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