*** (3 stars out of 5)
Who knew sneaking around doing some mining in Dominion Territory would have a downside?
If you think I'm just blowing hot air, how come this Fish-Woman doesn't have a hot-air blower?
Eight years ago, Benzite characters Mordock and Mendon had a gas supplement apparatus affixed to their upper chests. Runabout Pilot Hoya doesn't. Trek tech expert Mike Okuda suggested they'd improved the technology lately. Me? I'm thinking Professor Farnsworth's Oxygen Pills- Now a Suppository!
Of course, how Hoya does her breathing is no longer an issue after the Jem'Hadar drop by.
Vorta negotiator Kilana uses flattery and humble brags followed by ten hours of shelling to try to earn Sisko's trust. This works about as well as you'd imagine. Sisko stubbornly refuses to budge from his salvaged crashed Jem'Hadar ship, even with his people at each other's throats. The tragic deaths of the evil changeling captain and Starfleet guy T'Lor (a Tiburonian by the ears of him) seem inevitable.
Oh, also O'Brien's beloved minion Enrique Muniz perished, and it was the emotional heart of the whole story. That's why there's a moment at the end when Sisko tells Dax how every redshirt is a rare and special snowflake. In my view, that means Hoya no less than Muniz. Or Bertram, the gal with no lines and her back to the camera BEHIND Hoya for that matter!
There's no question this captured ship will come in handy later. But that's not going to comfort Hoya's widower. The poor bastard just lost his Fish-Wife (to use what I believe to be the Benzite term).
"The Ship" wins despite its generic title (seriously? THE SHIP? That's so crazy. No episode before or since has ever featured a ship. So distinctive!