Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 5 Episode 6

Trials and Tribble-ations

Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Nov 04, 1996 on Syndicado

Episode Fan Reviews (13)

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  • "I lied to Captain Kirk! I wish Keiko could have been there to see it"

    If there is one episode of Star Trek that can be called the greatest technology achievement of the franchise, it's this one, the brainchild of DS9 writer Ren Echevarria. Yet it's not the special effects that make it such a beloved part of the Star Trek canon; it's the episode's heart. Just as "All Good Things", the TNG finale, celebrates the TNG series and captures the spirit of its entire run in one episode, "Trials and Tribble-ations" is a celebration of the original series; a love letter to the fans that not only captures the feel of the Kirk era but also the charm. Part of the reason for this is simple: if you're going to revisit one classic Star Trek episode, choosing "The Trouble with Tribbles" is a no brainer. It's the most famous and fun of them all and has a near universal appeal. Throw in some new optical effects (which would later be done for all the episodes of the original series) and it opens the door for the best kind of nostalgia trip; where everything seems bigger and better than it really was. It might not be the original series as people knew it in the 1960s, but it's how we want to remember it.

    Striking just the balance of old footage, new footage, and a hybrid between the two, the episode surpasses "Forest Gump" by avoiding the temptation of using the "Gump" technology as a gimmick, instead incorporating most of the "Gump" like footage into the plot (such that there is). And while the story is hardly perfect in terms of plotting and pacing (which is to be expected, considering the constraints of a tale of this nature) it serves its purpose, which is really just to serve as a clothesline to hang some gags on. Assembled together, the various scenes effectively create the illusion that we really have stepped into Star Trek's past, with the original Enterprise crewmembers acknowledging the presence of the Deep Space Nine characters just enough times to make us feel like one of the DS9ers could walk up to Jim Kirk or Mr. Spock and interact with them. (Well, actually --- let's just say that "Lieutenant" Sisko pays off the whole premise by doing just what every fan of the original series would do in his place).

    It's the result of a behind the scenes crew pouring more work into a Star Trek episode than ever before, chasing down details to make sure all the elements work so perfectly together, they all disappear in the story, essentially covering their own tracks. I could tell you that they used old style camera lenses, lighting, and film stock. Or that they manufactured perfect facsimiles of Enterprise interiors, complete with vintage wall intercoms, turbolift controls, and blinking lights. I could even mention that they found some original Klingon uniforms stored away in a box, which saved the worried costume designer from having to duplicate their unique look. But really, none of this is necessary to know to enjoy the episode. As fans, we need just sit down, watch, and enjoy stepping into Star Trek's past with our DS9 friends; laughing with Chief O'Brien while taking a ride with him on an old style turbolift, ducking for cover with Dr. Bashir during an old school fistfight with the Klingons, and marveling along with Sisko and Dax as Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock suddenly walk their way. And if we notice David Gerrold, the writer of the original Tribbles episode, in one of his "Gump" style cameos, so much the better. (Check him out as the gray-haired man who passes Sisko and Dax when the Enterprise goes to red alert). In the end, "Trials and Tribble-ations" is not about new computer technologies or even the hard work of the behind the scenes team, but what they each achieve together. There might be better Star Trek episodes than this one, but when it comes to nostalgia and magic, "Tribble ations" towers over the rest, standing out as one of the great wonders of television. It's an amazing confluence of two generations and, by allowing us to live vicariously through the DS9 characters, about the closest most of us will ever get to really visiting the Enterprise.
  • the powers brothers from George Lopaz

    the 2 guys investigating at the beginning of the show on ds9
  • A great Story

    I love this story! One of my all time Star Trek (any series) favorites! I happened to read and interview with David Gerrold who mentioned making several cameo appearances in this episode. I've spotted him at least 5 times. Near the middle when O'Brien and Bashir walk out of the meeting room and they look down the corridor and in the lower right hand is a white haired gentleman playing with a Tribble on the floor. That's David Gerrold! And he is playing with one of the original Tribbles made for the original Tribble Story!

    Great Acting and of course the wink wink, nudge nudge of using classic lines from the original series. And one of my favorite inside jokes was O'Brien mistaking that one guy for Capt Kirk. That actor in that original scene was Bill Shatners Body Double for the show.

    I loved how the Old Scenes would overlap the newer ones! Great technology! Unlike the technology of old, used in various movies or tv shows where the actors are obviously acting in front of a green screen or whatever color they used. I heard they started out with blue screens.

    I have this story on VHS. I actually prefer to buying single episodes because I don't like ALL of the stories of ANY of the series. But I guess the producers are more concerned with how to make the most money.

    I also love how CAREFUL they are not to alter time! Unlike some pathetic little TV show overseas and a certain disgrace of a movie written by a moron who knows nothing about how to write good science fiction stories!
  • A unique meeting of captains.

    This had to be one of my favorite Star Trek episodes. It had a great story to it and I think everything was so well placed that it came off almost flawless. I thought that it was really cool to see Sisko's crew meet the crew of the original Enterprise. I liked the interaction and how the crew almost altered history. The acting was really good and I thought that they blended in well with the old crew. I have to say that the make up artists did a wonderful job of making everything look like it was back in the past. This was a very memorable episode and is a classic one. Thank you.
  • A love letter to the original series, and a hilarious romp all around.

    This wasn't the first tribute to the original series - TNG had a bunch of them. But there's no comparison - this one towers over its predecessors. It's as if the actors, producers, writers, and everyone else got together and said, "If we're going to do this, LET'S DO IT RIGHT."

    Obviously the seamless integration of the two sets of footage - from the 90s and from the 60s - makes it all possible. But the writing is particularly witty and clever too, with gag after hilarious gag. If I had to pick a particular favorite, I'd have to say it's Odo and Worf's discussion of "the great tribble hunt".

    Ultimately it's not an episode that bears much on the rest of the series, but nevertheless it is among the best that DS9 produced.
  • DS9, meet TOS

    Captain sisko is recalling what happened when he and the ds9 crew were sent back in time, to the trouble with tribbles episode of the original star trek series. We get to see a lot more tribbles (yay!), a comparison of tos klingons with current klingons (woo!) and we get to see captains benjamin sisko and james t kirk meet once and for all (boo yah!) I loved the ending when it turned out that odo brought back a tribble and that deep space nine is infested with tribbles. i especially love the bit where quark has one on his head
  • No doubt about this being a tribute to the original series!

    This episode was the greatest. Seeing the DS9 crew interact with the original crew was priceless. However, its status as a wonderful tribute to Star Trek goes much deeper than just mixing and mashing the two crews (although it helped).
    Seeing the characters act all awed by their surrondings was great, especially by Dax. Also great was the characters' serious lack of knowledge of TOS technology. My biggest laugh is when Sisko hits his patch, thinking his communicator was still there. Despite their hating jokes, the two agents in the framing story gave two of the best jokes: one of them mentioning six Enterpirses and not five, a nice reference to Star Trek's near future in this tribute to the past (and yes, NX-O1 wasn't included), and when the agents called Kirk a menace (it was just great). I also liked how Sisko reacted when they asked (also sounded a bit accusitory) if he had made a joke. The best part was the inclusion of David Gerrold and Charlie Brill. It helped to connect this episode to it TOS prequel. Brill definitly grew as an actor between the two episodes. David was just a nice presence, despite him just having a cameo role. Thanks to the text commentary, I was touched by a scene of him petting a tribble in the hallway of tribbles that Basher and O'Brien find. The text commentary said all the tribbles in this episode were new...except the one David was petting (it was from the original). I liked that little touch.
    The mixing of the two shows was flawless. If you edit the footage from this episode into the original episode and showed it to an unsuspecting person, he/she would never know the difference, that's how good the mixing was. i can almost think the DS9 crew time traveled to the taping of the original episode to shot the scenes. The costumes and sets were spot on with the original sets and costumes. The effort to make the new Enterprise scenes match the old ones was not wasted. The ship visuals were great as well, way better than the visuals in the original episode. My only complaint is that, the Star Trek Remastered version of the original made all the visuals with K-7 and the Enterprise in this episode obsolete (Paramount, if you're reading this, please remaster this episode so that 'Trials' can fit with the Remastered 'Trouble with Tribbles').
    This episode was made by fans. It shows in all the care and attention that went into this episode. It is one of the greatest episodes of Star Trek ever, one that I can watch over and over again.

    P.S. Get the DS9 Season 5 set and the Klingon Fan Collective set for this episode. The season set has behind the scenes stuff for this episode and the Klingon set has a text commentary for it.
  • Sisko + Kirk = Me so happy

    This episode was genius. They took an episode from the original series and threw in some hot Deep Space Nine action. It was cleverly meshed together to create this beautiful piece of Star Trek history. It made me laugh and made me say things such as: Holy crap this is a remarkable piece of television. It makes me want another episode like this, but I think that would just take away from how unique it is. Whoever came up with this idea is a mastermind in the arts of filmmaking. I'm not even sure that anything else needs to be said. Great episode, you should watch it. Unless you hate Trek, then I wouldn't advise you to watch it.
  • Great tie-in with the Original series!

    This episode, Trials And Tribble-ations. is a most likely the best single episode of the the entire Star Trek: Deep Space Nine series. The tie-in between this episode and the Star Trek: The Original Series makes it a series classic. The producers obviously did their homework on making this episode to appear to take place in the Original Series episode Trouble With Tribbles. They did an excellent job of putting Deep Space Nine's cast in several scenes from the Original Series' episode; the bar fight, Kirk's examining those who participated in the fight, the scene in the grain storage bin, and when Sisco gives Kirk the duty roster. This episode is great tribute to the Original Series and is a truly great episode in this series.
  • Pure Bliss

    This episode is pure bliss! What a fan episode, it was exactly what the series needed! They did it so well, and everything was just a joy to watch! I loved seeing them all get dressed up in the old costumes, with Bashir and O'Brien with the funniest hair styles :) A funny moment with Worf was also a highlight in this one :) Simply great viewing!
  • The crew of DS9 get sent back in time to the exact time and location of the Original Series episode, "The Trouble With Tribbles." They then must search the Enterprise and Station K7 in order to stop an aged Arne Darvin, villain of the original episode fr

    This is without a doubt one of the best Star Trek episodes there are. The story is brilliantly written, and the episode is put together incredibly. It is a tremendous treat for fans of any Star Trek series to get to see DS9 characters wearing TOS uniforms and using TOS gear. As well, it is very impressive and entertaining to see them walking around the decks of the original Enterprise and interacting with its crew. "Trials and Tribble-ations is a perfect tribute to the Original Series as well as a sign of just how good the newer series are.
  • A lot of fun and very well done.

    This is definitely one of my favorites. The overlay of the old footage with the DS9 characters, the original looking sets and the DS9 characters. Just excellent production quality.

    I also liked how they brought up the difference in how Klingons of that time looked much more human (missing the skull ridges) and Worf refers to it as something Klingons prefer not to discuss.

    That this is actually later explained in the Star Trek Enterprise series (I believe the Borderland episode) is a tribute to what a terrific job these guys did of pulling strands together from various series and stories.

    There is some goofiness to it, but I think it blends well with the original series. It was nice that they decided to have some fun with it.
  • A clever story that combines two different Star Trek series.

    This might possibly be my all time favorite Star Trek episode. I love it. I could watch 100 times and then watch 100 times more. I think that this episode may be even better than the original. It was so clever how they add all the Deep Space Nine characters to the original series episode and then added some scenes you never saw in the original episode.

    You see the episode through the eyes of the Deep Space Nine crew. They seemed to incorporate the best scenes of the original episode. It must have taken them a lot of time to make the episode but it was well worth it. It was a great episode.