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Star Trek DS9 - Season 4 - Episode 14

Star Trek DS9 - 4x14 - Return to Grace

Originally Aired: 1996-2-5

A demoted Dukat enlist Kira's aid in regaining his former status in the Cardassian Empire. [DVD]

My Rating - 6

Fan Rating Average - 6.63

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Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Numerous major long term plot threads are serviced here.


- Dukat says that it's bitter cold on Breen.

Remarkable Scenes
- Kira's inoculations.
- Dukat's initial meeting with Kira
- Dukat gossiping with Kira her seeming desire to entice powerful men.
- The Klingon Bird of Prey taunting Dukat's ship.
- Dukat's ship attacking the Bird of Prey.
- Dukat destroying his old ship with all the Klingons on board.
- Kira: "The best way to survive a knife fight is to never get in one."

My Review
It's something of a funny tradition on Star Trek that people keep stealing Klingon Birds of Prey. This episode is an homage to Star Trek III: The Search for Spock and Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home in many ways, in fact. Not only is a Klingon Bird of Prey stolen, but there's even complaints about Klingon technology being odd! :) I was glad to see Dukat as a "good guy" in this episode. In fact, his actions for the most part were downright honorable. The ending was equally pleasing; Ziyal is now a resident of DS9 thanks to Dukat declaring a private little war on the Klingons and Dukat thanks to some convincing from Kira, doesn't want his daughter involved in it. While the episode is nice, there's little else of note, making it a fairly average transitional episode.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Giuseppe on 2010-11-06 at 9:18pm:
    Kira comparing the Cardasian rifle with the Federation one... It was a bit like hearing someone compare an AK-47 with an M-16. The first one very simple and very rugged, the other much more advanced, but somewhat more prone to failure. No wonder someone like Kira would recommend the Cardasian rifle to a novice like Ziyal, after all she was a freedom fighter. And its real life counterpart, the AK-47, has been the weapon of choice for most untrained... freedom fighters.
  • From peterwolf on 2013-11-29 at 5:36pm:
    Overall the episode is entertaining, sometimes thrilling. However, some parts of the discussions and conversations between Dukat and Kira went wrong. It started in "Indescretion" and gets worse in later episodes. DukatĀ“s constant need to expose his feelings and motifs to Kira and his begging for appreciation are annoying and "un-Cardassian". It would have been much more effective if these "confessions" or whatever you may call it had occurred unexpectedly and very rarely. For example, such things happen with Garak: all of a sudden you see a different part of his character, of his past, which makes him such an interesting character. The dialogues between Kira and Ziyal are much better and more credible. Also, Dukat showed the potential for a more positive character development, but as we know, in the end it turned out bad. Interestingly, Damar appears for the first time on DS9 in "Return to Grace". His ups and downs account for one of the best character developments in Star Trek. The moment when he gives up drinking is the crucial turning point in the war against the Dominion, while Dukat choose a far more negative path.
  • From Gaius Gracchus on 2021-10-04 at 4:59pm:
    Dukat and Kira have great on-screen chemistry. Scenes between those characters always jump out, so episodes putting them together always resonate. The series found a winning formula here.

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