(written from a Production point of view)
|"Who Mourns for Morn?"|
|DS9, Episode 6x12|
Production number: 40510-536
First aired: 4 February 1998
|←||134th of 173 produced in DS9||→|
|←||134th of 173 released in DS9||→|
|←||501st of 728 released in all||→|
| Written By|
Morn dies, leaving his entire estate to Quark, but some of Morn's old acquaintances want a piece of the action.
Odo enters Quark's to inform Morn that his cargo of his Livanian beets is starting to spoil and needs to be moved immediately. When Morn doesn't respond, Odo reaches out to touch Morn's shoulder, only to find "Morn" is a hologram. Quark informs him that Morn has been away from the station for the past two weeks. Odo is confused, and Quark explains that Morn is such a regular fixture in his bar, that business inevitably falls off when he's not there - the last time he was away, business dropped five percent. As if to prove his point, as they are talking, Chief O'Brien and Dr. Bashir enter the bar and greet "Morn" as they pass by, not noticing it's a hologram. Odo asks why the hologram doesn't talk, and Quark complains about the high cost of an interactive hologram generator; besides which, he prefers the company of the hologram to the real Morn, who "never shuts up."
A funeral is held at Quark's according to Lurian traditions, including gifts of food and drink for the deceased so they will have something to sustain them in the afterlife. The funeral is attended by almost everyone on the station, and there are many genuine outpourings of grief. Quark, of course, attempts to capitalize on this, selling off overstocked liquor by labeling it "Morn's favorite", and delivering a eulogy that ends by encouraging everyone to "keep Morn's seat warm" for eternity by spending their time in the bar. Odo is skeptical, guessing that, when all is said and done, the Ferengi didn't know anything about Morn, and is unaffected by his death. In private, Quark confides that he is deeply grieved: Morn failed to pay his last month's tab before inconsiderately dying.
Captain Sisko unseals Morn's will and discovers that he left everything to Quark. In accordance with station procedure, Odo inspects the contents of the bequest, and delightedly tells Quark that Morn's bank accounts are empty, and his only "assets" are his most recent cargo - the now-spoiled beets - and the contents of his quarters - which turn out to consist of a large mud bath (Morn's "bed") and a painting of a matador. Quark is baffled - Morn was one of his best customers, and must have had money somewhere.
Odo leaves Quark to mope in Morn's quarters, and after he leaves a nude woman appears out of the mud. The woman identifies herself as Morn's ex-wife Larell, who has come to claim her share of Morn's estate. Quark is amazed when Larell confides that Morn won one thousand bricks of gold-pressed latinum in the Lissepian Lottery, but she doesn't know where it is kept and neither does Quark. Larell threatens to tie Quark up in court for years if he doesn't cut her in.
Later, Quark finds two alien brothers (race unknown), Krit and Nahsk, have invaded his quarters. They claim they were business associates of Morn who had money owed to them. They then threaten Quark if he doesn't pay them, and break the matador painting over Quark's head. After they leave Quark discovers there was an access chip hidden inside the painting that gave access to a storage container on the station. Bajoran security brings a small container to Odo's security office, that contains only a single brick of latinum. Quark notices Morn wrote a bank account number on it, and returns to his quarters to arrange delivery of Morn's savings. On the way he encounters Larell again, who steals the brick from Quark; however Quark remembers the number and knows the bank will only deliver it to him. Just as Quark is about to contact the bank, a disruptor is held to his head by a human named Hain. Hain identified himself as working with Lurian Security, and said Morn was the crown prince and that his riches belonged to the royal family. When Hain learned about Larell, Hain claimed she'd been trying to blackmail the family for years. Instead of arresting Quark, Hain would ensure Quark got a sizable reward for helping capture Larell.
Later, Larell and Quark meet up in his quarters to discuss when the latinum will arrive when someone tries to pick the lock. Larell hides while Krit and Nahsk bypass the lock and threaten Quark. Quark's doorbell goes off, so Krit and Nahsk hide when Quark answers the door. Hain enters and Quark attempts to warn him of Quark's "guests" but he doesn't catch on while everyone in hiding comes out. It is revealed that Hain, Larell, Krit and Nahsk were all lying to Quark, and they (along with Morn) had been the ones behind the infamous Lissepian Mother's Day Heist. It turns out that Morn had betrayed them all and left with all one thousand bricks of gold-pressed latinum they had stolen, and they knew he was waiting for the statute of limitations to expire - which it did two weeks previous. At first they decide to kill Quark, but he reminds them that he's the only one who can take delivery of the latinum. Nahsk has the "bright" idea of severing Quark's thumb (the only piece they need), but Hain steps in and vetoes the idea - since they can't very well walk into the cargo bay with a severed thumb without attracting suspicion. Since they were going to split it five ways anyway, they agree to let Quark take Morn's place.
Refusing to leave Quark alone, they all go to Quark's Bar. Odo arrives and asks why the bar is closed at that hour. Quark indicates his new "partners," and introduces them as friends of Morn, with whom Quark has been "commiserating" in private. Quickly catching on, Odo asks how much longer they will be commiserating, and Quark says, until 1600 hours the next day - the time the shipment of latinum will arrive.
After accepting the shipment, Quark goes to count the bricks only to find Hain, Larell, Krit and Nahsk have all drawn weapons on each other. Krit says Hain is outgunned, as his brother may be "slow," but he'll get Hain in the end. Nahsk takes offense at being called slow, and turns on his brother. A firefight breaks out, so Quark jumps into the cargo container. Odo and his deputies arrive and apprehend the four robbers - Larell, being the only one unhurt, is taken to a cell, while the rest are taken to the infirmary. When Odo assures Quark that the four will be in jail for a long time, Quark is ecstatic to be the sole owner of the bricks. But when he knocks two together, they crumble in his hands. Quark, aghast, says that someone has extracted all the latinum from the bricks, leaving only "worthless gold."
That evening, Quark is fuming behind the bar and attempts to rip Morn's stool from the floor. Odo arrives and says someone's here to see him - and in walks a very alive Morn, who takes his usual stool. Quark demands an explanation. Morn starts to open his mouth, but Quark cuts him off, saying he doesn't want to hear it, he's already figured it out: Morn knew that his former associates would come after him as soon as the statute of limitations expired, so he faked his death and pretended to leave his property to Quark, knowing the Ferengi would do whatever it took to get the latinum, and succeed in holding off his four partners until they turned on each other. Morn nods guiltily, confirming Quark's story.
Quark angrily says he could have been killed, and demands to know what really happened to the latinum. Instead of replying, Morn picks up a small glass and regurgitates a small quantity of liquid latinum - about 100 bricks' worth - into it. Amazed, Quark realizes that Morn swallowed the latinum and has been carrying it around in his second stomach all these years (which also explains why his hair fell out). Morn pushes the glass to Quark, as fair reward for his help. Quark is more than satisfied, and, intrigued by this scheming, under-handed side of Morn he didn't suspect before, starts to discuss possible joint ventures for the future, such as selling Morn's gold dust, since some primitive cultures still consider it valuable.
"You know Morn, he never shuts up."
- - Quark
"I wonder who came up with the idea of suspending liquid latinum inside worthless bits of gold."
"Probably someone who got tired of making change with an eyedropper."
- - Quark and Dax
"I'll unload everything and use the profits to... (Sniffs) what is that smell?"
"Your inheritance: Livanian beets. Very ripe."
- - Quark and Odo
"Oh, that-that can't be! There's-there's no latinum in these bricks!"
"Someone's extracted ALL THE LATINUM! There's nothing here but worthless gold!"
"And it's all yours."
"NO! NOOO!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!"
- - Quark and Odo
"Most men don't know how to defer gratification."
"You don't make it easy."
- - Larell after stroking Quark's lobes
"Take that gold dust of yours. It doesn't have to be a total loss. I hear there are some primitive cultures who consider it quite valuable..."
- - Quark to Morn
Story and scriptEdit
- As most fans know, the main concept of the character of Morn is that he never speaks on-camera, whereas off-camera he allegedly never shuts up. Ira Steven Behr has likened this to the character of Maris on the show Frasier; a character whose physical appearance is constantly described as being unique, but whom viewers never see. This silent aspect of the character however proved to be a stumbling block for writers wishing to do a 'Morn episode', and it wasn't until Mark Gehred-O'Connell came up with the idea of doing a Morn episode which barely features Morn that the producers found something they were willing to make. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- Mark Gehred-O'Connell 's original idea for this show involved Morn mysteriously disappearing from the station, and the rest of the cast trying to hunt him down. Then during their search, they realize that although they have all known him for six years (apart from Worf), none of them actually know very much about him. René Echevarria removed the detective aspect from the story, and introduced the characters of Hain, Krit, Larell and Nahsk. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- The noise Morn makes when he regurgitates the latinum at the end of the episode took supervising sound editor Mace Matiosian several days of foley recording and over six hours of editing to complete. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- The latinum expressed into the glass was a CG effect. (AOL chat, 1998)
- The painting of the matador that is smashed over Quark's head was purchased by Morn in the fifth season episode "In the Cards". John Eaves painted ten duplicates of the original painting. (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
Reception and awardsEdit
- This episode was nominated for an Emmy Award for Outstanding Makeup for a Series for Michael Westmore. For the makeup of Krit and Nahsk, Westmore commented "We did this bony ridge that went all around the head and right down the back, and then had them on their hands too". For Larell, Westmore commented "The other character, Larell, is all forehead with widow peaks on". ("Aliens Resurrected", Star Trek Monthly, issue 46)
- Rene Echevarria commented "Mark [Gehred-O'Connell] did a good job, but the comedy was too broad. Ultimately, it wasn't a Morn episode; it was a story about Quark. And the most common mistake people make in writing Quark is to make him transparently greedy. On paper, that's very funny, but Armin doesn't play Quark that way. Armin plays it real". (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Companion)
- Armin Shimerman was not fond of the episode, commenting "That's one of the iniquities about Mark [Allen Shepherd] still being an extra. Here's a whole episode around someone who's basically a background performer, and that's ridiculous. The definition of a background performer is someone you don't pay attention to. They're someone in the background, so how can you have an entire episode based around them? It shows one of the iniquities of what's happening over at the show that the producers are still treating Mark as though he's an extra. Rene [Auberjonois] often says I've created a monster in Mark because I was very solicitous about him in the beginning, and so was David Livingston, who was not only a director but also our line producer. Between the two of us, we got a lot of coverage for Mark, so it's taken off from there". ("Quantifiably Quark", Star Trek Monthly, issue 46)
- Mark Allen Sheperd commented "I had a lot of fun with "Who Mourns for Morn?" Most people wouldn't have known that that was actually me when Quark brings me out of the crowd to sit in Morn's chair. Sure, people that came to conventions know, but the people just laughed, I was told, which I thought was really cool... it was kind of an inside joke! The writers went into more detail than they have ever gone into about Morn's background - who Morn is and what he has done, as well as characters that are involved with him outside of the station. The fact that he sleeps in a pool of mud really surprised me, and that he also has two stomachs and that he keeps latinum in his second stomach. No wonder I sit all day at Quark's and do nothing. I'm rich! ("Voice of the Barfly", Star Trek Monthly, issue 46)
- In their review of the episode, authors Mark Jones and Lance Parkin commented "There are a few episodes this season that could be set in previous seasons, and they tend to stick out a bit. This is one of them, a fun little romp that feels strange among all the madness, war and death of the rest of the season". (Beyond the Final Frontier, p. 249)
- The wardrobe worn by an attendant at Morn's memorial service at Quark's is a reuse of Minister Kray's outfit from VOY: "Ex Post Facto".
- The soundtrack bears resemblance to Gustav Holst's "Mars" from The Planets.
- A Latinum brick from this episode was sold off on the It's A Wrap! sale and auction on eBay. 
Video and DVD releasesEdit
- UK VHS release (two-episode tapes, CIC Video): Volume 6.6, 15 June 1998.
- As part of the DS9 Season 6 DVD collection.
Links and referencesEdit
Also starring Edit
- Rene Auberjonois as Odo
- Michael Dorn as Lt. Commander Worf
- Terry Farrell as Lt. Commander Dax
- Cirroc Lofton as Jake Sisko
- Colm Meaney as Chief O'Brien
- Armin Shimerman as Quark
- Alexander Siddig as Doctor Bashir
- Nana Visitor as Major Kira
- Cathy DeBuono as M'Pella
- Brian Demonbreun as a Starfleet science officer
- Judi Durand as the Cardassian computer voice
- David B. Levinson as Broik
- Dan McGee as an operations division lieutenant
- Mark Allen Shepherd as
- Brian Simpson (stunt actor)
- Susie Stillwell as
- Unknown performers as
47; assault; assay office; Bank of Bolias (Bolarus IX); bar bill; Bolians; Bolian transport; bottle opener; cargo bay; Central Bank of Lissepia (Lissepia); court; gold; hair loss; hologram; holosuite; interactive holoprojector; ion storm; latinum; Lissepians; Lissepian Lottery; Lissepian Mother's Day Heist; Livanian beets; Luria; Lurians; Lurian Security; Mascot; Matador; memorial service; Milky Way Galaxy; Morn (hologram); Morn's cargo ship; mud bath; mud tub; oo-mox; optronic relay; Promenade; Quark's; Robbery; Rom; Royal Family of Luria; Statute of limitations; storage locker; Til'amin froth; tongo; Yridian ale
- Who Mourns for Morn? at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
- Who Mourns for Morn? at Wikipedia
| Previous episode:|
| Star Trek: Deep Space Nine|
| Next episode:|
"Far Beyond the Stars"