Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 3 Episode 20

Improbable Cause (1)

Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Apr 24, 1995 on Syndicado



  • Trivia

    • Nitpick: The audio and visual effects used when the two Romulans beam aboard Odo's and Garak's shuttle are the same ones used for the Borg transporter effects.

    • This story line explains why the Obsidian Order secretly organized a huge build-up of ships in the Orias System. Not to go after the Maquis, as Thomas Riker thought in the episode "Defiant", but to attack the Founder's Homeworld in a joint operation with the Romulan Tal Shiar to deal a crippling first strike against the Dominion.

    • Nitpick: Odo tells O'Brien the bomb that destroyed Garak's shop was triggered by a pheromonic sensor, and O'Brien seems unaware about what that is. In the first season episode "The Nagus" O'Brien tells Sisko that a bomb that almost killed Quark locked in on his pheromones. Therefore, O'Brien should know what a pheromonic sensor is when Odo tells him.

  • Quotes

    • Tain: (on his reasons for trying to have Garak killed) Like I used to say, 'always burn your bridges behind you- you never know who might be trying to follow.'

    • Odo: (referring to Garak) He's telling you the truth, Commander, he doesn't know why the Romulans would try to kill him.
      Sisko: What makes you so sure?
      Odo: Because if he did know, he'd already be spinning out an elaborate web of lies to cover up the truth.

    • (Garak is sitting on a biobed in the Infirmary. Sisko and Odo are questioning him about the explosion at his shop)
      Garak: Who would want to kill me? A simple tailor?
      Odo: Simple tailor! A simple tailor who used to be an agent of the Obsidian Order.
      Garak: The Obsidian Order! Constable, you shouldn't put too much
      stock in the good doctor's flights of fancy. Now, are you sure this explosion wasn't an accident because I can't think of anyone who would wish me harm?
      Sisko: Someone tried to kill you, Garak. Whoever it was may want to try again so if I were you, I'd give this matter some serious thought.
      Garak: Well, let me see. There's the Nausicaan whose wedding suit I misplaced, and the Yridian I owe money to, and of course there's always Major Kira.
      Bashir: This is serious, Garak.
      Garak: I'm being serious! I don't think she likes me.
      Odo: She doesn't, but if she wanted you dead, you would be.
      Garak: You do have a point.
      Sisko: Could this attempt on your life have anything to do with the reason you were exiled from Cardassia?
      Garak: I seriously doubt the Finance Ministry would try to have me killed for failure to pay my taxes!
      Odo: You expect use to believe that's the reason you were exiled?
      Garak: You think I would lie about a thing like that? It's not something I'm proud of.
      Sisko: I don't like explosions going off on my station, Garak. Innocent people could have been hurt - you could have been killed. Now if there's anything you know that you're not telling us, I suggest you start talking!
      Garak: I've told you everything I can think of.
      Odo: (sighs) Alright, then, I'll investigate the 'leads' you've given us.

    • Cardassian Informant: There's been a great deal of unusual Romulan activity these past weeks. Cloaked ships believed to be Romulan Warbirds have been detected near the Cardassian border. Troop movements. Communication activity.
      Odo: Sounds like they're preparing for an invasion.
      Cardassian Informant: It has occurred to us, and we're ready for it if it should happen, but it doesn't make any sense.
      Odo: Does war ever make sense?
      Cardassian Informant: Still the wise observer of humanoid folly. Tell me, do you still do the Cardassian neck trick?
      Odo: No, I don't.
      Cardassian Informant: Pity. You were so good at it.

    • (after Bashir tells the story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf)
      Bashir: The point is, if you lie all the time, nobody's going to believe you, even when you're telling the truth.
      Garak: Are you sure that's the point, doctor?
      Bashir: Of course. What else could it be?
      Garak: That you should never tell the same lie twice.

    • (talking about Enabran Tain)
      Garak: You, on the other hand, seem to have left your retirement far behind. Unless you're simply on a pleasure cruise with your pointed-eared friends.

    • Garak: The truth is usually just an excuse for a lack of imagination.

    • (Bashir is seeing Garak off the station. The two are talking outside the airlock)
      Bashir: I hope you know what you're doing, Garak.
      Garak: So do I.
      Bashir: Is there anything you need me to do while you're gone?
      Garak: Like what?
      Bashir: I don't know. Any unfinished business?
      Garak: Actually, doctor, there is something.
      Bashir: Well, what?
      Garak: If you go into my quarters and examine the bulkhead next to the replicator, you'll notice there's a false panel. Behind that panel is a compartment containing an isolinear rod. If I'm not back within 78 hours I want you to take that rod, and eat it.
      Bashir: Eat it?
      (Garak nods)
      Bashir: You're joking?
      Garak: Yes, doctor, I am.
      Bashir: Very funny.
      Garak: Well, I thought so.

  • Notes

    • This episode was originally a stand-alone and dealt with the Obsidian Order's attempt to punish Garak for killing Entek in "Second Skin". However, the producers decided to change the link from "Second Skin" to the episode "Defiant" and reveal what was going on in the Orias system. In addition, executive producer Michael Pillar suggested the episode be expanded into a two-part to make up for this episode's original weak ending.

    • Julianna McCarthy (Mila) plays the same character in the episodes "The Dogs Of War" and "What You Leave Behind (Part 1)".

    • First of three appearances in this series for Joseph Ruskin, who plays the Cardassian Informant in this episode. He previously appeared in the Star Trek: TOS episode "The Gamesters Of Triskelion" as Thrall Master Galt, and appears later in the Voyager and Enterprise episodes "Gravity" and "Broken Bow" respectively.

    • Armin Shimerman (Quark) and Cirroc Lofton (Jake Sisko) do not appear in this episode.

    • The character Mila, introduced here and appearing again in season 7, is refered to as a housekeeper. In the Star Trek fiction series book A Stitch In Time by Andrew Robinson, it is developed that although Mila is Tain's housekeeper, she is also Garak's mother.

  • Allusions

    • The Boy Who Cried Wolf

      This is a story by Aesop, in which the moral is suppose to be, "don't tell lies".

      Garak, however, sees a different moral: "Don't tell the same lie twice".

    • Julius Caesar

      Bashir and Garak discuss William Shakespeare tragedies, specifically Julius Caesar.