Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1997): S05E18 – Business as Usual


Introduction

“Business as Usual” is the 116th episode of the television series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, the 18th episode of the fifth season.

Despondent over his mounting financial woes, Quark allows his cousin Gaila to talk him into joining the arms sales business. Meanwhile, O’Brien juggles fatherhood, work, and social life as he cares for baby ‘Yoshi.

Outline

Quark and Jadzia Dax are playing Tongo in the bar, but the Ferengi’s heart isn’t in it. Since losing his business license, Quark has lurched from one bad deal to the next causing insurmountable debts and leaving him with nothing. Quark’s cousin Gaila arrives on the station and offers to help him out of his predicament. Quark knows immediately what the enterprise is – selling weapons. Gaila tells him that no weapons will be brought to Deep Space Nine, as Odo would stop them. Instead, Quark will use his skills with customers to display holographic versions of the weapons in the holosuites (thereby sidestepping the law as no actual weapons will be brought on the station). The weapons will be supplied by the suavely sinister Hagath. Gaila claims the money will help him pay off his debt, help renew his business license and eventually enable him to buy his moon. Hagath arranges for Quark’s percentage to go immediately to his creditors, so it will be a while before Quark actually sees any of his earnings.

Quark turns out to be a natural at selling weapons and the scheme becomes quite profitable, and Odo’s attempt to arrest him fails when the Bajoran government intervene (as Hagath sold weapons to the Bajoran resistance during the Cardassian occupation). However, Quark soon finds himself ostracised by his friends, particularly Jadzia, who are disgusted that Quark has sunk so low. Quark’s latest client, the Regent of Palamar, who is at war with General Nassuc, says he wants to make a purchase that will kill somewhere in the region of twenty-eight million of his opponent’s people. Gaila and Hagath take the matter lightly, but Quark is horrified at the idea of being responsible for so much death.

Quark (who has now paid off the last of his debts) realises he must find a way to escape with his life and avoid being part of a genocide program. He invites General Nassuc to the station on the pretence of supplying weapons to both sides, inspired by Hagath’s previous dealings. He arranges for representatives of the two sides – the Regent of Palamar, and General Nassuc – to encounter each other in a cargo bay, making himself conveniently absent in the process. A firefight ensues, and they leave the station in pursuit of the double-crossing Gaila and Hagath.

Quark’s friendship with Jadzia is renewed, and although his financial woes are over he finds himself with a fresh debt when Sisko makes him pay for damage ensuing from the firefight.

Meanwhile, O’Brien’s new son Kirayoshi is going through a phase where he will cry without fail when the Chief puts him down (as Keiko is away and his regular babysitter is unavailable). He tries to bring his son to work, and even play darts while holding him, but eventually he is forced to take some time off. Kirayoshi finally settles when Worf holds him, giving O’Brien an opportunity for some much-needed rest.

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Production & Filming Details

  • Director(s): Siddig El Fadil.
  • Writer(s): Bradley Thompson and David Weddle.
  • Release Date: 07 April 1997.
  • Running Time: 45 minutes.
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

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