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Star Trek DS9 - 1x19 - Duet

Originally Aired: 1993-6-13

Synopsis:
Kira discovers that a Cardassian visiting the station could actually be a notorious war criminal. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 8.11

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 7 17 3 4 7 0 1 8 12 42 116

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- Aside from being one of the best episodes of DS9 in general, this episode is also foreshadowing for the future nuanced, morally ambiguous texture of DS9's overarching story and the ending is a profound moment in the life of Kira's character; beginning her true in-earnest transition from partisan freedom fighter to her eventual significant role in healing the wounds between her people and Cardassia.

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."

Remarkable Scenes
- Kira: "If your lies are going to be this transparent, it's going to be a very short interrogation." Marritza: "Well in that case I'll try to make my lies more opaque."
- Marritza: "Gul Darhe'el himself called my computer filing system a masterpiece of meticulous exactitude."
- Dukat: "This Bajoran obsession with alleged Cardassian improprieties during the occupation is really quite distasteful." Sisko: "I suppose if you're Bajoran, so is the occupation."
- Kira wanting Marritza to be something worse so the punishment can mean more to her.
- "Gul Darhe'el" reminiscing fondly about his accomplishments. Gloating about the horrors he inflicted.
- Odo breaking into Quark's private stock to give Kira a free drink!
- Kira: "Nothing justifies genocide." Gul Darhe'el: "What you call genocide I call a day's work."
- Marritza's breakdown in the end.
- Marritza murdered.

My Review
This is the best episode so far, superbly acted all across. A truly deeply affected Cardassian, Marritza, feels a profound sadness for what his people did to the Bajorans during the occupation. He served in the Cardassian military, and therefore feels responsible. He never played a major role in the atrocities though, so he pretends to be Gul Darhe'el, the butcher of Gallitep, so that he can let the Bajorans exact satisfying revenge on him. That way he gets personal redemption and in his mind an honorable death and the Bajorans get the satisfaction of putting to death one of their greatest enemies. He's not Darhe'el though, and Kira is forced to toss aside her personal hate and her racism to stop this man from committing suicide for something that really isn't his fault. In the end, the profoundly tragic character is killed by a Bajoran man who represents the person Kira used to be only the day before. There are elements of this story that are contrived, most especially the lack of security at the end setting up Marritza for an easy ambush, but the episode is still a fantastic example of this show at its best.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Pete Miller on 2006-07-22 at 1:12am:
    "But why?"

    "He was cardassian. That's reason enough."

    A line that certainly is a microcosm of the current conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians. Eventually the killing goes on for so long that both sides don't even know why they do it, except that the other side is their adversary.
  • From JTL on 2008-08-03 at 7:35pm:
    A supremely touching episode; when Marritza breaks down at the end there I don't think I've ever felt such sympathy for a character in a television series. The only reason I wouldn't normally give this episode a 10 is because Marritza's death is (while perhaps necessary) very rushed and, as you said, too easy. However this was much too moving as to not get a 10.
  • From Thorsten Wieking on 2008-09-02 at 8:54am:
    What struck me while watching the first season a second time in this episode and episode "Dax" is the fact that obviously there is still the death penalty imposed on Worlds belonging to or becoming a member of the Federation. I for one thought that this punishment has been abolished at least in the future UFP.

    Cheers
    Thorsten
  • From Bernard on 2010-01-11 at 7:16pm:
    Beautifully constructed episode, brilliantly performed.

    Enough said!

    Seriously though, it seems like they saved the best stuff for the last two episodes. You have to wonder what was going on for most of the season when they can produce this standard of episode that rivals anything TNG could do for emotional impact and profound messages.
  • From MJ on 2011-02-09 at 4:39pm:
    This ranks as one of my favorite DS9 episodes of all time.

    It's brilliance has already been pointed out by the other reviews here. My only other thought is that I can't think of a single other TV series in science-fiction or elsewhere that produced such a stunningly and powerfully dramatic episode in its first season. I must admit, when I first watched DS9, I was not prepared for this episode based on what I'd seen. And Moritza's breakdown loses absolutely none of its power with repeated viewing, the sign of a truly great episode.

    Even TNG, which I still tend to like better, did not produce such a moving episode until its second season (Measure of a Man). Pure brilliance...
  • From John on 2011-12-06 at 10:49pm:
    While the rest of the characters are well utilized, particularly the brilliantly-written Marritza, the weak link (as usual) is Kira. No surprise there, as she is one of the most irritating and one-dimensional characters in the entire Star Trek canon. Her constantly over-dramatic indignation gets very tired very quickly, and detracts from an otherwise gripping episode.

  • From Jimmy on 2019-08-21 at 9:32pm:

    For me simply the best Star Trek episode ever written! Excellent acting all around. Captivating and riveting dialogue. Not one punch thrown, not one phaser fired, not one explosion. The current people working on Star Trek could learn a lot from this episode.
  • From Abigail on 2019-09-01 at 2:02pm:
    Great episode!

    Kira was super annoying in this episode.

    But still, it was great!

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Star Trek DS9 - 4x03 - The Visitor

Originally Aired: 1995-10-9

Synopsis:
When a tragic accident causes Sisko to vanish before his son's eyes, young Jake begins a life-long obsession to bring him back. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 7.41

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 39 9 7 5 6 7 6 12 8 21 162

Filler Quotient: 2, filler, but an enjoyable episode nevertheless. You can skip this one, but you'd miss out on some fun.
- This episode is technically filler, but it's some of the best character development Ben and Jake will ever get.

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- Tony Todd, who plays the older Jake in this episode, also plays Kurn, Worf's brother.
- Rachel Robinson, who plays Melanie in this episode, is actually Andrew Robinson's daughter. Andrew Robinson plays Garak.
- The future uniforms worn by the reunited crew on the Defiant when Jake first tries to rescue his father are the same as the ones worn in the future presented to Picard by Q in TNG: All Good Things.
- This episode was nominated for the 1996 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation.

Remarkable Scenes
- Future Jake telling Melanie about the death of his father.
- Sisko: "I'm no writer, but if I were it seems to me I'd want to poke my head up every once in a while and take a look around, see what's going on. It's life, Jake! You can miss it if you don't open your eyes."
- Seeing Sisko's death.
- Sisko appearing in Jake's quarters briefly out of nowhere, confused, then disappearing.
- Jake talking about all the changes in the timeline due to Sisko's death. The Klingon situation got worse and the Bajorans allied with the Cardassians! Chilling.
- Sisko appearing again, this time in front of other people.
- Future Jake telling Melanie that the Federation gave control of DS9 to the Klingons.
- Sisko appearing to a middle aged Jake.
- A desperate Jake and Sisko pulled into subspace together, discussing the situation.
- Future Jake: "I want you to promise me something." Melanie: "Anything." Future Jake: "While you're studying my stories, poke your head up every once in a while. Take a look around. See what's going on. It's life, Melanie." Melanie: "And you can miss it if you don't open your eyes."
- Sisko appearing in front of his son now an old man.
- Future Jake: "I've been dragging you through time like an anchor. And now it's time to cut you loose."
- Future Jake: "For you. And for the boy that I was. He needs you more than you know."
- Morn Appearances; 1. Standing behind Quark during Sisko's memorial. 2. Pats Jake's shoulder, seemingly sad for him, in Quark's bar in the scene just after the memorial. 3. Not shown, but Nog tells Jake that Morn runs the bar in the future. He talks his customers' ears off and is probably drinking himself out of business. ;)

My Review
This is one of the best reset-button episodes ever done. The biggest reason for this is that Sisko retains a memory of his son's efforts to save him across the decades. The reason this is cool is that many reset button episodes are just that; total resets. None of it actually happened. But the way this one played out, Sisko is left with an extremely profound memory of his son's heroic sacrifice in the divergent timeline. It's a nice ride too. Both actors playing Jake did an utterly fantastic job acting their parts, as did Ben Sisko himself. In the end, the temporal paradox is presented very nicely. Future Jake's sacrifice and Ben's resurrection was one of the most moving scenes ever presented in Star Trek. Ben begging his son not to kill himself on his behalf was very sad and very moving. The episode ends with a deeply moved Sisko who has dodged death thanks to the second chance his son gave him. Only he will ever truly know the pain his son went through in the divergent timeline, and I'm sure it changes his life. Bravo, an unexpectedly brilliant episode.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Johnny Storm on 2006-05-07 at 7:59am:
    I have to admit that I am mainly a TOS and TNG fan but I would go so far as to say that this is IMHO my candidate for pretty much the best episode of any Trek, ever.

    It beautifully portrays a father's love for his son. It is the only ep of Trek that has ever brought tears to my eyes (and my wife's). It is successful on a number of different levels: the plot, the superb acting, the view of how the DS9 charcters will turn out in future (very like "All good things...").

    Having said that it does not stand up so well to repeated viewings and the view of the future was superceeded by later events.

    Still a great one though.

  • From RichD on 2006-06-02 at 5:16pm:
    I just saw this episode recently. I had not seen it in many years. I'd forgotten how incredibly moving and touching it is. I am a full grown man. I do not cry often watching a tv show or a movie. Maybe ET when I was a boy. This episode gets me every time. Perhaps it reminds me a lot of my relationship with my father. The thing that struck me with this most recent viewing, was Cirroc Lofton's acting. It's like a .150 hitter coming up with the game winning hit in the World Series. Superb. Where did that come from? If he'd only been half as good, the episode would have suffered. This is an episode you can watch and show to someone who doesn't even follow the Star Trek. It's that good.
  • From Pete Miller on 2006-06-24 at 10:06pm:
    You know, as I was watching this I thought "I can't wait to see how low a rating eric gave this reset button episode". When I came to find out that you gave it a TEN my mind was blown. I am sorry, I usually agree with all your ratings but I found this episode to be filler, doubtlessly the producers recovering from the expensive "Way of the Warrior". I couldn't focus on the episode because the whole time I knew that this couldn't possibly be. I knew that DS9 didn't just end with an old man jake kicking the bucket and the Klingons owning deep space nine. Now if I went back and watched it again, maybe I'd enjoy it more. I did like seeing Nog as a CAPTAIN.

    Bottom line, I disliked it. I thought it wasn't nearly as profound as it was trying to be, and I think that TNG "The Inner Light" is a much better executed version of a similar premise. I recognize that I am in the minority, so I won't mess up the fan votes by submitting mine. I, however, would give this one a 3. I didn't care for it at all.
  • From Alex von Treifeldt on 2008-07-07 at 4:25am:
    An absolute cracker! I only saw it 7 July 2008. Your last sentence sums it up perfectly! The series really came alive for me today! I just didn't know what hit me...
  • From djb on 2009-11-08 at 1:48am:
    The concept of a "reset button" episode is not, in itself, bad. Some of the best TNG episodes had that going, to some degree (The Inner Light, Tapestry, Yesterday's Enterprise, and All Good Things come to mind). It's all in the execution. This episode executed the reset button quite well. In fact, you could even say that aspect strengthens this episode, in a way.

    For one, it's obvious from the very start. As soon as we find out that the old man is Jake, it's clear that this is not a typical episode. Then when he refers to his father's death, since we know Sisko doesn't die, it has to be some kind of alternate-reality-type episode.

    One way it which this aspect is a strength is the way it implies how things would have turned out if Sisko weren't around; in other words, Sisko is instrumental in the events that happen over the next 4 seasons. This is clear, but the episode highlights that. Plus, as someone else pointed out, Sisko is left with the memory.

    I always appreciate these small excursions from the normal sci-fi Trek. It reminds us that this show (series of shows) is about the human journey as well.
  • From L on 2013-05-28 at 4:29am:
    Jake and Sisko's relationship has always been portrayed so wonderfully, an openly affectionate father-son dynamic is rarely seen in popular culture or sadly even real-life. This was beautiful and moving.
    My only concern - does losing his father and his consequent bumming around make Jake a great writer, or will he still be one with the timeline 'fixed'?
  • From meinerHeld on 2013-06-02 at 10:57pm:
    Too bad that the poignant exchanges between Jake and Melanie are rendered meaningless. Nonetheless, just the chance to see a sagely Jake in an exquisitely homey setting, dispensing wisdom unto the youngun, was beautiful.
  • From Dstyle on 2013-10-24 at 3:44pm:
    You know how sports teams sometimes wear retro throwback jerseys in certain games? It must have been throwback uniform day on Commander Nog's ship, because there's no way that TNG era uniform was still in use!
  • From Zorak on 2016-05-17 at 4:53pm:
    As good as the acting was by the regular cast all around, I think it was Tony Todd who really made this episode what it was.
  • From Coihue on 2018-10-02 at 12:37pm:
    Made me cry. Every-time-they-get-together.
    This was even better than The Inner Light.

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Star Trek DS9 - 5x03 - Looking for par'Mach in All the Wrong Places

Originally Aired: 1996-10-14

Synopsis:
Quark must fight for honor -- Klingon style. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 6.18

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 42 7 8 4 3 15 6 18 29 28 58

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."

Remarkable Scenes
- Julian eavesdropping on the "battling O'Briens".
- Worf: "I prefer traditional opera performed in the traditional manner." Dax: "You know, for a Klingon who was raised by humans, wears a Starfleet uniform, and drinks prune juice, you're pretty attached to tradition. But that's okay. I like a man riddled with contradictions."
- Worf in love at first sight when he sees a Klingon woman board the station.
- Worf's reaction to seeing Grilka embrace Quark.
- Bashir and O'Brien discussing O'Brien and Kira growing ever so close. ;)
- Worf attempting to court Grilka.
- Quark talking to Dax about Grilka right in front of Worf.
- Worf: "It is customary among her people that the man bring a leg of lingh'ta on the first courtship dinner. Make sure it's fresh, as if you have just killed it. Then use the leg to sweep aside everything else on the table and declare in a loud voice, 'I have brought you this! From this day, I wish to provide food for you and your house! All I ask is to share your company and do honor to your name!'"
- O'Brien starting to feel as though he's cheating on Keiko.
- Worf listening to Klingon opera very loud on the Defiant's bridge.
- Quark describing his successful dinner with Grilka.
- Quark and Dax reenacting the formation of the Klingon Empire.
- Odo and Kira discussing O'Brien.
- Quark telling Grilka that she's worth more than all the latinum in the quadrant.
- Keiko inadvertently forcing O'Brien and Kira into another uncomfortable situation.
- Jadzia's "idea."
- Quark's puppet battle. Awesome.
- Quark's "Right of Proclamation."
- Jadzia courting Worf.
- O'Brien and Kira finally discussing their "problem." :)
- Quark, Grilka, Worf, and Jadzia all in the infirmary. Gotta love Bashir's reaction.
- Worf laughing. Now that's something you don't see every day.
- Morn Appearances; 1. Worf attacks him.

My Review
A great sequel to DS9: The House of Quark, Worf has fallen in love with Quark's ex-wife. The title of this episode, albeit long, is of course hilarious. This episode is loads and bounds more successful than the first. The various love related character threads floating around in this episode are wonderfully done. Quark pursues Grilka, Worf pursues her too, Dax pursues Worf, and O'Brien and Kira pursue each other, though they don't entirely know it for a while. ;) I don't normally grant ratings of ten to humor episodes, but this one so incredibly profound that exceptions must be made sometimes. While I probably would never grant a humor centric episode such as this the "best episode of [insert Trek show here] award", I still would place this episode on the list of must see episodes for anyone sampling the series. Though, I'd say that about any episode I've rated at ten, now would I. :)

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Dio on 2009-02-04 at 3:36pm:
    I totally agree with you on this one, very well written and acted and overall extremely enjoyable. I had to laugh when O'Brien almost fell onto Kira in their final scene!
  • From Tallifer on 2011-04-11 at 6:52pm:
    Best episode of Deep Space 9?!?

    It is funny and passes the time well, but ti is hardly a masterpiece of science fiction or space opera.

    It is a parody of the classic tale of Cyrano de Bergerac, except that Worf-Cyrano is consoled for his loss of Grilka-Roxane by Jadzia Dax. Quark as romantic hero is too much of a stretch (although there have been other such episodes, such as the tedious one about the Cardassian scientist).
  • From Mike Furlong on 2016-04-10 at 12:51pm:
    Fun Fact: The actor who plays Garak, Andrew Robinson, was the director of this episode.
  • From Axel on 2018-07-04 at 6:56am:
    TUMEK: "Have you ever pursued a Klingon woman?"

    WORF: "No"

    You mean, aside from K'ehleyr who birthed your child and with whom you went through the mating rituals in TNG? Technically she was half Human and didn't exactly embrace Klingon ways. But it seems odd that Worf doesn't even think it's worth mentioning, especially since Alexander makes several appearances on DS9.

    Anyway, I think this episode gets at one of the best things about DS9. Instead of a ship always going out and exploring, sometimes different species from around the galaxy make their way to DS9 and interact with each other. In this case it's done humorously, with inter-species relationships. And it works.

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Star Trek DS9 - 5x06 - Trials and Tribble-ations

Originally Aired: 1996-11-4

Synopsis:
Deep Space Nine crewmembers travel back in time and integrate with Kirk's Enterprise crew. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 7.25

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 46 1 11 2 6 7 5 9 28 23 141

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- This episode serves as a sequel to TOS: The Trouble with Tribbles and TAS: More Tribbles, More Troubles. Also the scene when Worf falls just short of explaining why TOS Klingons look different is a sort of inadvertent setup for the later episodes of Star Trek Enterprise, Ent: Affliction and Ent: Divergence. And of course this episode is also one of the best and funniest episodes of the entire series and shouldn't be skipped solely for that reason!

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- Kirk was "a menace" because of his repeated temporal violations.
- Emony Dax met Dr. McCoy on Earth and probably had a brief relationship with him when he was a medical student while she was judging a gymnastics competition.
- The intermittent tribbles that fell on Kirk after the initial downpour were actually Sisko and Dax throwing them down the hole. :)
- This episode was nominated for the 1997 Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation.

Remarkable Scenes
- Dax' faux pas, time joke.
- Bashir and O'Brien making fun of the way Worf smells.
- The crew dressing up in retro uniforms.
- Bashir: "I'm a doctor, not an historian." Count 18 for "I'm a doctor, not a (blah)" style lines, which McCoy was famous for.
- Sisko: "In the old days, operations officers wore red and command officers wore gold." Dax: "And women wore less."
- O'Brien and Bashir trying to work a 23rd century turbolift.
- O'Brien's and Bashir's confrontation with a local Engineer.
- Worf describing to Odo the history of Klingons and Tribbles.
- Odo: "Another glorious chapter of Klingon history. Tell me, do they still sing songs of the Great Tribble Hunt?"
- Bashir speaking of a possible predestination paradox surrounding his birth: "I could be my own great grandfather! If I don't meet with her tomorrow I may never be born! I can't wait to get back to Deep Space Nine and see your face when you find out that I never existed!"
- O'Brien mistaking a low ranking officer for Kirk.
- O'Brien, Bashir, and Odo not recognizing 23rd century Klingons and Worf's reaction to it: "They are Klingons, and it is a long story." O'Brien: "What happened? Some kind of genetic engineering?" Bashir: "A viral mutation?" Worf: "We do not discuss it with outsiders."
- The bar fight.
- Dax calculating the exact number of tribbles exactly the way Spock did.
- Sisko meeting Kirk.
- Tribbles all over DS9.
- Morn Appearances; 1. At Quark's, drowning in Tribbles.

My Review
This episode is wonderfully funny. They did a great job making everything look retro; even the characters' hair, along with splicing together scenes from TOS: The Trouble With Tribbles into this episode. Dax is ridiculously nostalgic, Sisko wants to ask Kirk about fighting the Gorn, O'Brien can't figure out all this old technology, Bashir thinks he's his own great grandfather, and Worf feels shame about Klingon history. All very entertaining and probably the biggest fanboy episode ever made.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Sean on 2010-06-07 at 4:45am:
    That was such a fun episode, the producers did such an excellent job on recreating the Enterprise and merging the TOS footage. I can't remember the last time I laughed so much during Star Trek!

    And as a side note, I think that mystery sixth Enterprise must be the 1701-E, because Geordi says in First Contact that the Enterprise has been out of spacedock "for almost a year", so presumably when this episode was set, the Enterprise-E was out there, stutting her stuff.
  • From rpeh on 2010-08-01 at 1:00pm:
    Wonderful stuff. A perfect tribute to TOS and a great episode in its own right.

    One minor problem: Bashir says to O'Brien "Surely you took elementary temporal mechanics at the academy" but we know that O'Brien didn't graduate because he was worried about having to call Nog "sir".
  • From packman_jon on 2012-05-15 at 1:48am:
    So much fun. Even if Dax's line about McCoy brings a visual of college-age McCoy "getting to know" Emony...! Still, it's too hard not love this episode!
  • From Drac on 2013-02-17 at 3:52pm:
    Very good episode, but as a second watch i found it too easy they captured the klingon effortlessly and silently out of the blue and he told them what he did. Chop chop, time to cut this short :)
  • From Selador on 2013-06-10 at 3:13pm:
    A classic episode. It had a wonderful feel and was perfectly pulled off. Just superb!
  • From AW on 2015-12-21 at 7:40pm:
    Just one problem (though the writers couldn't have known at the time) they say that it was the first enterprise when we know that is not true. I guess I was the first Federation enterprise as the Federation hadn't been formed yet when the first was made.
  • From Thavash on 2018-12-24 at 2:33am:
    Watching in 2018, I'm still amazed at how seamless they made everything look.

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Star Trek DS9 - 5x13 - For the Uniform

Originally Aired: 1997-2-3

Synopsis:
Sisko encounters Michael Eddington, his former Starfleet Security Chief, who betrayed him and joined the Maquis. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 6.47

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 22 5 5 9 3 9 7 15 23 26 39

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- On top of being one of the finest episodes of the series, this episode also resolves the Eddington loose thread.

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- This is the first episode in which they use holo projectors instead of a viewscreen for ship communications. Holo projectors won't be used very often after this episode though.
- Odo mentions the encoded Maquis transmission is a heterophonic Breen nursery rhyme.
- Sisko says: "If anyone knows how to keep things cold, it's the Breen."

Remarkable Scenes
- Eddington and Sisko confronting one another in the teaser.
- Eddington's computer virus stunt.
- Odo: "Sir, have you ever reminded Starfleet command that they stationed Eddington here because they didn't trust me?" Sisko: "No." Odo: "Please do."
- The whole Sisko, Dax, and the punching bag scene. Sisko is an awesome character when he's angry.
- O'Brien and Dax briefing Sisko on all the stuff that doesn't work on the Defiant.
- The whole Defiant half roll thing. Cheesy but funny.
- The ambush.
- Eddington attacking a Cardassian evacuation ship forcing Sisko to save the occupants rather than go after Eddington.
- Sisko strolling onto the bridge dispensing orders to begin modifying quantum torpedos so that they can be used to poison Maquis colony atmospheres. I love the bridge crew reaction. Sheer disbelief.
- Sisko getting pissed at the end. The perfect villain.
- Dax: "Benjamin, I'm curious. Your plan to poison the Maquis planets. You didn't clear it with Starfleet first, did you?" Sisko: "I knew I'd forgotten to do something." Dax: "Big gamble." Sisko: "That's what it takes to be a good villain." Dax: "You know, sometimes I like it when the bad guy wins."

My Review
Sisko becomes the villain! And what a villain! This episode is one of many which show us how great an actor Avery Brooks can be, especially when given parts that deal excessively in anger. Avery Brooks' performance in this episode in my opinion even rivals Patrick Stewart's "Moby Dick" scene with Lily in Star Trek VIII: First Contact. The Eddington loose end is finally tied up and this episode wastes none of the showdown potential. An unexpected gem.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Remco on 2009-05-17 at 11:51am:
    So, why is Sisko not court-marshalled? Why are Dax and Sisko joking (yes, joking!) about not getting persmission to destroy Vulcan (uh, I mean, random planet X).

    What the hell was this? Should we care about Sisko's actions, if the show doesn't? Whatever... I don't get the point. This episode doesn't exist. 0
  • From JRPoole on 2009-06-23 at 2:48pm:
    My review lands squarely between the two previous ones. This is a great episode, partly because it makes us uncomfortable when Sisko becomes the villain. I like that the writers don't pull punches here--Sisko really does become the villain, willing to poison a planet to square things with Eddington. His plan, though, is rash and I can't believe that Star Fleet would be happy with it, especially since it makes an enemy of the Maquis, who up to this point don't consider the Federation their enemy. The fact that everyone is so flippant about his actions takes serious points off for me.

    Where is Cassidy Yates? She'd be a natural for this one since she, too, betrayed Sisko for the Maquis.
  • From Jaap on 2010-10-01 at 10:41am:
    Eddington is right and you have to feel sorry for him for being caught. Sisko becomes at least as wrong and perhaps worse than the maquis.

    Or did Sisko prevent escalation with the Cardassians with doing to a federation planet what the maquis did to a Cardassian planet?

    All in all, i don't feel comfortable after this episode. Eddington is right in that Sisko is betraying his uniform.
  • From John on 2011-01-14 at 12:55am:
    This episode is just badass. Sisko kind of flips out and does the wrong thing for the right reason, because his back is against the wall. We will see this taken even further in season 6's "In The Pale Moonlight". Not surprising, really, because both episodes share the same writer (Peter Allan Fields) and director (Victor Lobl), which no doubt accounts for their similar look and feel.

    I consider this episode a sort of dress rehearsal for the gripping brilliance of "Moonlight", but it stands quite well on its own.

    10/10
  • From MJ on 2011-01-21 at 6:12pm:
    Another Maquis episode, which makes it another one of my favorites.

    The episode is awesome for reasons already pointed out. But I've read a few reviews of this episode that question why Sisko was able to get away with what he did. I think it's feasible, when you consider there are admirals in Starfleet who want to take the kid gloves off when dealing with the Maquis.

    Star Trek is about the history of the Federation, and each series portrays the Federation following the course of a typical civilizational power: there is the rise, the honeymoon stage. This is TOS, when the Federation is clearly the principled, scientifically curious organization Gene Roddenberry intended it to be. This continues into TNG, although by this time the Federation is starting to get into the business of realpolitik, playing shrewd diplomacy with its rivals. By DS9, the Federation is starting to resemble an empire, with a seedy underbelly that accompanies its noble creed.

    It's a sign of the times, too. TOS was created at the height of the Cold War, when an allegorical, future America (the Federation) needed to clearly be on the side of good. By the 1990's, with no more Cold War, the more controversial aspects of US policy were being explored, and this is reflected in DS9's Federation.
  • From Tallifer on 2011-04-12 at 5:39pm:
    Sisko just violated everything the Federation stands for! He attacked innocent civilians. Neither Kirk, nor Picard nor Janeway would ever have dne this. Eddington proved to be right about Sisko in the end (even though Eddington himself proved to be a monster using biogenic weapons also).

    I like fictional villains like Darth Vader and the Master, but I expect them to receive their just desert. I hope Sisko suffers the consequences of his action.
  • From John on 2011-09-22 at 5:00pm:
    I just watched this one again, and it's still so damn good.

    Sisko is the baddest dude in the Federation!
  • From Mario on 2012-04-20 at 3:55pm:
    Wow, what the hell was that?!!
    Sisko really became a villain here and a bully. I don't know if I can ever again route for this guy. During this episode I hoped the Maquis would win and Sisko could have overcome his petty thirst for vengeance and have some character growth. But no, he goes for revenge and the show seems to try to justify that. If the Dominion comes - or someone else - who is a bigger bully, I would not really care if they killed Sisko and his crew (allthough I know that will not happen anyway). I know that the Maquis did also poison planets, but from people who are supposed to be the "heroes" of the show I expect not to behave like the bad guys. But Sisko is even worse than them, because he does it only for himself, whereas the Maquis are fighting for a whole population.
  • From Selador on 2013-06-09 at 7:00pm:
    A very interesting episode. I like and agree with MJ's analysis of what's going on with Starfleet, but I'm not clear how the audience is supposed to feel about this.

    If we're supposed to side with Sisko against the "terrorists", even though they have a very valid point in my opinion, then I'd be very uncomfortable.

    If the idea is to sort of show that good people can do awful things and that Sisko is therefore showing he is weak by attacking the Maquis colony, then that would be more acceptable.

    But this is a smart episode and it's clear that a lot of though has gone into it. I think that the writers have left it open for the audience to decide for itself how Sisko and Eddington's actions should be judged - which is exactly what's going on here!

    I'm giving it a 9, the only reason it doesn't get a 10 is because of the 'no consequences' ending - usually in Star Trek people pay a price for their decisions.

    On a different note, in response to Kethinov - Brooks is an adaquate actor at best and never comes close to Stewart's best performances. He is great for the part though so his lack of talent doesn't really effect my enjoyent of the show at all. I agree with you that he's most believable when he's losing his temper.
  • From L on 2013-07-30 at 4:00am:
    Problem - Sisko didn't retrieve his phaser before beaming up to the Defiant at the end of the opening scene.
  • From Mandeponium on 2013-08-30 at 3:06pm:
    Lots of opinions here. Keep in mind that according to Sisko, the planet will be uninhabitable to "humans" for 50 years, presumably just like Eddinton's weapon was only harmful to Cardassians.

    So he's not wiping out an entire planet. He's forcing an evacuation, one that leads to the capture of Eddington and deals a serious blow to the Maquis who, only hours before, essentially declared war on the Federation.

    His actions may not be justified, but considering the circumstances, they are excusable (if only by the narrowest of margins!)
  • From bodner on 2014-03-10 at 7:26am:
    It is too bad Sisko never gets his "due" for this, escpecially when you consider that directly after this Cardassia forgets the entire treaty and announces all out war
  • From McCoy on 2017-02-14 at 11:11am:
    10? Really???
    For me it was "How to ruin reputation of main character in one episode". Sorry, Sisko is amoral jerk here, nothing more. The end never justifies the means! Blind obsession is always wrong. As was stated before - no other captain would behave like this. The worst part is - Sisko wasn't forced to do anything bad, he just WANTED to do it. For the uniform... Federation propaganda... Looks like they really aren't the good guys in Galaxy.

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Star Trek DS9 - 5x26 - Call to Arms

Originally Aired: 1997-6-16

Synopsis:
As another convoy of Jem'Hadar ships emerges from the wormhole toward Cardassia, Sisko and his officers face the grim realization that the Dominion is taking over the Alpha Quadrant. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 8.07

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 9 2 4 7 8 10 2 5 14 23 103

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

Problems
- So when did the Runabouts leave the station?

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."

Remarkable Scenes
- Quark: "Any marriage where the female is allowed to speak and wear clothing is doomed to failure."
- Another Jem'Hadar convoy coming through the wormhole.
- Nog discovering that the Romulans signed a non aggression treaty with the Dominion.
- The whole briefing room scene where Sisko decides to mine the wormhole.
- O'Brien, Dax, and Rom discussing how to mine the wormhole. I love how Rom was able to think about his wedding and come up with a genius idea for the mines at the same time.
- Odo and Kira addressing their discomfort with each other.
- Kira: "So for now, all we need to concern ourselves with is deploying the minefield, maintaining station security, and preparing ourselves for a possible invasion." Odo: "Well I don't know about you, but I feel more comfortable already."
- Sisko's confrontation with Weyoun.
- Bashir: "You don't think Starfleet could be persuaded to send us a few more ships, say, fifty?"
- Garak: "I must say, constable, I admire your composure. You're an island of tranquility in a sea of chaos." Odo: "What I am is useless. My entire staff has been evacuated to Bajor."
- The Dominion fleet attacking the station.
- The minefield being deployed.
- Sisko evacuating DS9.
- Jadzia announcing she will marry Worf.
- Sisko's goodbye speech.
- Sisko: "I promise I will not rest until I stand with you again... here, in this place where I belong."
- Kira running Sisko's program to sabotage the station. Kira: "Dukat wanted the station back? He can have it."
- The revelation that Jake is still aboard the station.
- Dax: "We should rendezvous with the Federation task force in 48 hours." Bashir: "And then what?" Nog: "And then we make the Dominion sorry they ever set foot in the Alpha Quadrant." Sisko: "Cadet, you took the words right out of my mouth."
- The scene when Kira, Odo, and Quark welcome aboard Dukat, Damar, Weyoun, and the Jem'Hadar.
- Dukat correctly interpreting the reason why Sisko left the baseball in his office.
- The Rotarran and the Defiant joining the Federation-Klingon task force.
- Rules of Acquisition; 190. Hear all. Trust nothing.
- Morn Appearances; 1. In the crowd when Sisko gives his goodbye speech. 2. In Quark's bar after the Federation personnel evacuate.

My Review
Quite possibly one of the best DS9 episodes ever done. Yes, here is where the Dominion war finally, really begins. Numerous major events and major character developments happen here. For one, Rom marries Leeta. Proving that Rom has come a long way from being Quark's second in command, a B-list Ferengi. Now he's married to a beautiful woman. And his technical genius is put to its best use in this episode by O'Brien and Dax. Speaking of Dax, Jadzia and Worf get engaged in this episode. It's interesting to note that it probably wouldn't have happened so soon without the war. Kira and Odo finally deal with their feelings for each other, at least to a certain extent. And then there's Jake. Jake finally got a job! He's a news reporter for the Federation news service. In accordance with his new job, he decided to remain aboard DS9 to report on the ensuing events. His father, furious, finally has to admit that Jake has become a man and can make these decisions for himself. Sisko's speech as he leaves the station is wonderful. Just when Sisko was finally beginning to like his job as commander of DS9 and his appointment as Emissary of the Prophets, it is all ripped away from him. At the beginning of the show, all Sisko wanted to do was get out of there. Now it greatly pains him to leave. Between the political intrigue, the space battle, and the captivating villains, this episode takes advantage of everything the five seasons of buildup has to offer. Truly spectacular, and with a cool episode name to boot.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Wes on 2012-04-13 at 1:40pm:
    Agreed. This is the best episode of DS9 thus far. Probably my favorite up to this point, too.

    I noticed something after watching this time. Something about this episode seems really similar to Star Wars. It's like they took the best parts of Star Wars and capitalized on them in this episode. (Of course, I'm not saying that's actually what they did. It just has the things I liked about Star Wars.) I think most of that comes from the great space battle. Other feelings of Star Wars come from all the characters who have some role to play. DS9 makes awesome use of a huge (for Star Trek) cast. This is just an awesome episode. The music was good, too.
  • From Thavash on 2018-12-25 at 12:59pm:
    Why did Starfleet not send any assistance to the most strategic Station in the Alpha Quadrant , which was being attacked by the strongest enemy they had yet faced ? For me a major inconsistency.

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Star Trek DS9 - 6x02 - Rocks and Shoals

Originally Aired: 1997-10-6

Synopsis:
Sisko and his beleaguered crew are captured by the Jem'Hadar. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 7.51

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 26 2 1 2 3 8 3 4 15 31 83

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."

Remarkable Scenes
- The teaser. Thrown right into the action!
- Seeing the Jem'Hadar ship sinking into the ocean background.
- O'Brien lamenting about tearing his pants, then laughing as he realizes that it's the least of his problems.
- Nog to Garak: "You tied me up and threatened to kill me." Good connection with DS9: Empok Nor.
- Sisko to Remata'Klan regarding his proposal: "Would you make a deal like that?" Remata'Klan: "No." Sisko: "Then why should I?" Remata'Klan: "You shouldn't."
- I like how when Nog and Garak are released, Nog walks ahead of Garak. ;)
- Yassim committing suicide.
- Keevan betraying his men.
- Everyone debating the morality of slaughtering the Jem'Hadar in this manner. Sisko: "Given the choice between us and them there is no choice!"
- Kira, lamenting about becoming a collaborator: "Half the Alpha Quadrant is out there right now fighting for my freedom, but not me."
- Sisko to Remata'Klan regarding his "decisive advantage": "To fight a battle under these circumstances would serve no purpose."
- Sisko: "Do you really want to give up your life for the 'order of things'?" Remata'Klan: "It is not my life to give up, captain. And it it never was."
- O'Brien: "What'd he say?" Sisko: "All the wrong things."
- The slaughter.
- Keevan showing up just after the slaughter, very pleased with himself.

My Review
An episode exploring the morality of conduct during war. On the station, the monotony of Kira's daily routine is depicted and we begin to see her slowly realize she's becoming a collaborator. In the end, she decides to go against Sisko's advice and form a new resistance after Vedek Yassim kills herself publicly to protest the Dominion occupation. More interesting though is Sisko and crew's situation stranded on the planet they crashed on. The Vorta leader, Keevan, decided to betray his own men by giving Sisko and crew his exact plan of attack so that instead of being stranded on the planet, he could surrender as a prisoner of war and spend the war resting comfortably in a Federation prison. Sisko is left with the choice of whether or not to go through with Keevan's plan. He doesn't like the shady morality of it, but he realizes that "given the choice between us and them there is no choice." He tries one last time to appeal to the Jem'Hadar's wits, informing them that Keevan betrayed them and that they'll surely all die if they decide to fight this battle. But instead of surrendering, we're shown instead just how insanely loyal Jem'Hadar soldiers are. They knew Keevan betrayed them and they walked into their own deaths knowingly, and proudly. Because obeying the command structure and the "order of things" means more to them than their own lives. A fantastic episode.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Hugo on 2012-11-10 at 5:17pm:
    I don't really get it - how did the Dominion ship get there? We saw two jem'hadar fighters chasing our heroes and attacking them - then we saw the ship with the heroes crashing towards the planet in the nebula - but... ? Just before we saw the two enemy fighters breaking off, and no shot was fired against them...
  • From L on 2013-08-03 at 5:33am:
    A fantastic exploration of the poignant relationship between the Jem Hadar and their Vorta. The Jem Hadar's blind and doomed loyalty to 'the order of things' was somehow noble, akin to the Samurai ethic.
    Kira's situation as a frustrated civil servant to a bureaucracy she despises was interesting too.
    Lots of moral complexity here.
  • From Axel on 2015-07-02 at 12:10pm:
    I like the dual storyline here depicting people wrestling with the morality of what they are doing. At the same time Kira is questioning whether she is a collaborator with evil, Ramata'Klan is being asked to question his own loyalty to the Vorta. Kira ultimately decides that she is playing the very role she fought against during the Cardassian occupation. Meanwhile, Ramata'Klan is well aware of the flaws of the Dominion command structure and the treacherous ways of the Vorta, but has resigned himself to his own role within that system. He chooses obedience-the overarching Jem'Hadar value-over his own freedom and self-determination.

    This episode has lots of great scenes and dialogue: Garak and Nog's conversation just before being captured; Jakes interview with Kira and Odo; Ramata'Klan standing up to Keevan and insisting that only he should be able to discipline his men; and of course, Yassim's chilling suicide on the Promenade. Overall, a really well done episode and some fantastic acting by the guest stars who played Remata'Klan, Keevan, and Vedek Yassim.

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Star Trek DS9 - 6x05 - Favor the Bold

Originally Aired: 1997-10-27

Synopsis:
The Federation continues to lose the war with the Dominion/Cardassian Alliance and morale is sinking fast. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 5.77

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 63 2 6 1 3 2 3 3 9 25 71

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award"
- This episode establishes that Changelings do not age. Perhaps this works by the Great Link constantly rejuvenating itself somehow? Perhaps a Changeling which never returns to the Great Link would eventually die of old age?
- This episode establishes that the Vorta lack a sense of aesthetics.
- This episode establishes that the Vorta have poor eyesight and that the Jem'Hadar have excellent vision.
- This episode establishes that the Vorta have very good ears and can hear very well.
- The enemy Dominion fleet at the end of this episode consisted of 1254 ships. Bashir claimed that a fleet that size outnumbered the Federation fleet two to one.

Remarkable Scenes
- Seeing the Defiant on the front lines. Finally.
- O'Brien singing his "engage, retreat" tune he started in DS9: A Time to Stand again. Bashir: "Well we'd better think of a new tune fast or the only song we're gonna be singing is hail the conquering Dominion."
- Dax: "We're not going to win this war by running away from the enemy."
- Sisko announcing he wants to retake DS9.
- Sisko presenting his plan to retake DS9 to the admirals.
- Weyoun examining one of Ziyal's paintings.
- Weyoun: "Gods don't make mistakes."
- Weyoun's response to Kira asking him to release Rom: "You can't release a man and then execute him. It makes no sense."
- Martok, regarding his plans to bring Worf with him when he talks to Gowron: "What could be better? An ally and an enemy both telling him the same thing. He'll have no other choice but to agree!"
- Weyoun: "You're not sure? Two large enemy fleets break off from the front lines and rendezvous at a Starbase and you're not sure why?"
- Kira beating up Damar. Ziyal: "Did you kill him?" Kira: "No, but I thought about it."
- Sisko's lofty description of Bajor to Admiral Ross.
- Nog promoted to ensign! Cool.
- Weyoun: "Weak eyes, good ears."
- The sight of the massive Federation fleet and the sight of the massive twice as large Dominion fleet of 1254 ships.
- Sisko: "There's an old saying. Fortune favors the bold. Well, I guess we're about to find out."
- Morn Appearances; 1. Supposedly just finished bemoaning to Quark about having to attend his mother's birthday party. 2. At Quark's, wrapping a present. His present is used as the method to get a message off the station.

My Review
Another spectacular performance by Salome Jens as the female shapeshifter, manipulating Odo, as well as Jeffrey Combs as Weyoun, manipulating the Cardassians. Even Dukat and Damar get great roles in this episode. We get to see how dedicated Damar is to his job and how maniacal Dukat can be. We get to actually see the Defiant on the front lines for the first time since DS9: A Call to Arms, we get numerous tidbits of cool information and factoids regarding the Dominion, and the episode slowly but surely builds to the best cliffhanger since TNG: The Best of Both Worlds, DS9: A Call to Arms, and Voy: Scorpion.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From AW on 2015-12-29 at 2:07am:
    Props to Morn for plot relevance.

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Star Trek DS9 - 6x06 - Sacrifice of Angels

Originally Aired: 1997-11-3

Synopsis:
Dukat loses a daughter, while the Alpha Quadrant gains a victory. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 7.46

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 25 13 5 5 3 3 3 6 8 13 126

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- In this episode alone, 2800 Dominion ships were destroyed in the wormhole and at least some of the 1254 ships the Dominion sent against the Federation had to have been destroyed as well, along with some of the ~600 Federation ships that engaged the Dominion and some of the Klingon task force too. That's quite a body count. It must have been in the hundreds of thousands at the very least!

Remarkable Scenes
- The sight of the two fleets in formation before the battle. Impressive stuff.
- O'Brien: "Canon to the right of them. Canon to the left of them. Canon in front of them. Volleyed and thundered." Bashir: "Stormed at with shot and shell. Boldly they rode and well into the jaws of death. Into the mouth of hell rode the six hundred."
- Sisko ordering the fighters to attack.
- The entire fleet charging into the battle.
- Dukat: "War is such thirsty business, don't you agree?" Weyoun: "Perhaps if you didn't talk so much, your throat wouldn't get so dry."
- Dukat and Weyoun discussing the Bajoran occupation, the current occupation, and future plans. I love how they casually discuss whether or not to completely wipe out Earth's population to quell possible resistance. This conversation really shows you how insane Dukat is. Weyoun? He's a bit twisted. But Dukat is a maniac.
- Watching ships get picked off left and right as the Defiant charges through the lines.
- The Klingons showing up and joining the battle.
- The Defiant breaking through enemy lines.
- Quark rescuing Kira, Leeta, Rom, and Jake.
- Dukat detonating the minefield literally one second before Rom disabled the station's weapons.
- I love the speechless looks on the Defiant bridge as they watch the mines go one by one.
- Sisko: "Take us into the wormhole." O'Brien: "What the hell. Only going to meet a couple thousand Dominion ships." Dax: "One ship against an entire fleet? That's a hell of a plan B!"
- Female shapeshifter: "Send a message to our listening posts in the gamma quadrant. Tell the reinforcements that the alpha quadrant awaits them."
- Sisko charging the Defiant into the wormhole.
- Sisko to the prophets: "You want to be gods? Then be gods. I need a miracle. Bajor needs a miracle. Stop those ships!"
- Weyoun, realizing they've been defeated somehow: "Time to start packing!"
- Damar murdering Ziyal.
- Sisko and crew reboarding the station.

My Review
And so ends the DS9 occupation arc. This episode is the biggest roller coaster ride ever displayed on Star Trek so far. The massive space battle is indescribably awesome, and the immense use of characters was truly sublime. This episode is everything the conclusion to this magnificent arc should have been and more. Aside from general declarations of the episode's awesomeness, there are some interesting details I'd like to point out. For one, I enjoyed watching Garak fight for the Federation all through the arc. From Call to Arms and onward, Garak chose his side very clearly. He's no longer the ambiguous player of both sides he was in the first season. Another detail I enjoyed was how it was Odo and the Bajoran security officers that ultimately allowed Rom to sabotage the station's weapons and kept the Defiant from being destroyed. If you remember back to earlier in this arc, Dukat and Damar expressed dismay about the idea of armed Bajoran security officers on the station. Seems their fears were justified. :) Last, but not least though is Dukat. The way he fell apart at the end of this episode was absolutely perfect. He went from being absolutely sure of victory, to confused, to realizing he'd been defeated, to despair over Damar murdering his daughter, to totally insane and disconnected with reality in the span of a few minutes of on-screen plot. One of the most brilliant performances I've seen on Star Trek. When you add it all up, this episode is a stroke of utter brilliance.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From RichD on 2006-06-19 at 8:18pm:
    What a fantastic episode. It incorporated brave, bold ideas that were missing in say, the last 2 Star Trek movies. Dukat's meltdown at the end after witnessing the death of his daughter Ziyal was truly gut wrenching. The battle scenes were epic in nature. DS9 is my favorite among all the Star Trek series. This episode ranks among the top five or Six along with In the Pale Moonlight, A Call to Arms, Rocks and Shoals, The Siege of AR558 and The Visitor.
  • From Pete Miller on 2006-07-13 at 1:14am:
    The scenes over the past two episodes where the female shapeshifter is talking to Odo about leaving the pathetic solids behind and joining the great link are really quite disturbing. This reminded me alot of Emperor Palpatine trying to turn Luke Skywalker to the dark side in 'Star Wars: Return of The Jedi'. That shapeshifter lady is so evil, it's unbelievable. She just dismisses all solids as irrelevant and constantly manipulates Odo to turn to the Star Trek dark side. I was waiting for her to start shooting lightning bolts out of her fingers at the end.

    For all the female shapeshifter's smugness, condescension, superior attitude, and downright xenophobia, it was quite a pleasure to see the prophets destroy the Dominion's ships like flies. It's nice to know that there are those out there who would consider the shapeshifters limited and pathetic, as the shapeshifters consider the solids. It also reveals that the dominion and the shapeshifters are nothing but petty dictators and conquerors. If they were as superior and detached as they claimed, they would be in a situation similar to the prophets, not messing in the affairs of the solids as they currently do.
  • From Orion Pimpdaddy on 2010-03-09 at 11:55am:
    This episode marks the end of the fun Dukat, and the beginning of the insane Dukat. I love DS9, but I think this is the single biggest mistake in the DS9 story arc.
  • From Zaphod on 2011-05-18 at 7:33am:
    What a letdown, what foolish decision to let the prophets conjure away that Dominion fleet just like that.

    Btw, I stopped watching DS9 after that bullshit ending to such a promising and exciting story arc, because I just dont trust the authors of the series anymore, dont want to give them the chance to fool me again. ^^
    And I wont read your site anymore btw, guess, the reviews on this site are more to my taste:

    http://www.cynicscorner.org/ds9_6/ds9_6s.html
  • From Bernard on 2011-05-25 at 12:50pm:
    And I'm sure our webmaster is truly devastated by that announcement Zaphod.

    This is by no means the best television I have ever watched, but it is a super conclusion to the 7 episode story arc. It really is. As usual with DS9 it is what's going on with the characters that is important. Here, Marc Alaimo gets to take centre stage and he doesn't disappoint.

    This episode also has a rare commodity in Star Trek... genuine suspense. It builds up and up continuing from where the last episode left off. Will they make it? Will Rom do it? All the pay-offs here are brilliant.

    The only thing that brings this episode down slightly is the problem with many major episodes later in the DS9 run - too much pointless space battles. I just don't want to see another CGI sequence, that's not why I watch Star Trek. TNG had that aspect nailed, used just enough to show what was going on. DS9 in episodes like this hits you over the head with shot after shot of ships exploding... I want to see more of what's going on in Sisko's head, Dukat's head.

    The conclusion that Zaphod takes such exception to is fine with me. In fact they could have used a similar 'get out' in Voyager by using Q to save their bacon instead of the preposterous watering down and then besting of the Borg in 'Endgame'.

    The aspect of the prophets that I dislike as shown here, and I already discussed this in a comment on 'Ascension', is that they become more and more interested in Bajor as the series progresses. Instead of Science Fiction you almost feel like you are watching 'Spiritual-Fiction'. Throughout all other incarnations of Star Trek religious belief was continually held up as ancient superstition by our heroes. Everytime there is a culture or being that holds some beliefs they are shown to be backward or erroneous in some way. This show actually starts to suggest that the spiritual people of Bajor are being watched over by beings that didn't even understand the concept of time in the pilot.

    Anyway, none of that takes away from this episode as a dramatic piece. As our webmaster describes it, 'utter brilliance'. I would say ALMOST flawless, but not quite.
  • From Christopher Wright on 2011-12-18 at 2:56pm:
    Deus Ex Machina. That's that only problem I have with the conclusion. Too many things worked out in this epsiode. The change of h eart Odo had seemed a bit too quick as well. They should have played up the conflict more with Odo in that respect - almost like a drug addict having to give up his fix for the ones he loves. I LOVED the Weyoun's quick retreat comment and body language. I can see why this episode is highly rated, I just wish the resolution was more creative.
  • From JR on 2012-06-12 at 3:04am:
    There are so many good episodes in seasons 5 & 6 and this one is non-stop action. It seems like I find ways to nitpick a bit in each one.

    I could not, and still cannot, figure out how a mere Captain, on one of the lead ships no less, is commanding the entire fleet of ships. That would be the responsibility of someone three or four grades higher. They even had an admiral (not sure how high) in the last couple episodes that could easily have been included.

    I understand Sisko commanding maybe one attack wing, but giving orders to all of them while making a rapier himself is a bit ridiculous.

    I also agree with the above sentiment that having the prophets "disappear" all the dominion ships in the wormhole was pretty cheesy. It would have been cooler if Rom's minefield ended up working after the dominion thought it was clear and ordered their ships through. But, I gather there will be some repercussions to Sisko for asking the prophets to act, and I guess that will make for a good storyline down the road.
  • From Captain Keogh on 2013-03-17 at 7:20am:
    I remember the first time I saw this episode, I was only 8, I was amazed at how many ships there were.

    I alos loved the ending where Dukat is being led away and O'brein is holding a baseball bat, I just thought there was a bit of humour in that.
  • From L on 2013-08-04 at 4:05am:
    I didn't see any O'Brien with a baseball bat.

    This was a fitting climax. Hard to see how the rest of the season can compete.

    I was as shocked as Dukat was when his daughter was killed. Why did they have to do that? I really liked her. Almost made me cry, especially coming straight after the honest exchange between them of their love for each other.

    The Changeling's callousness and superiority is becoming more evident and sinister.
    The head changeling's apparent blandness just increases this evil.

    I did not like the Prophet's cliched intervention, and the demanding of a 'price' to do so. I don't see any reason they had to deny Sisko his future happiness, other than the usual psychopathic motivation of those who call themselves gods.
    A very slight anti-climax to a moving story arc.
  • From TheAnt on 2013-09-15 at 7:22pm:
    It really is a great episode, tension and quite some excitement how the situation will resolve with such impossible odds.
    A remarkable scene in my book is when Quark stand stunned after killing the two guards.

    Odo comes around all of a sudden, sadly it does not feel altogether convincing. Ok Kira have given him a verbal kick in the gonads, yet even so he shrugs off the lure of the changelings from having been all enthralled.

    The reason I cannot give the episode a solid 10 is the fact that the Dominion is defeated by a Deux ex machina - that's where the storytelling depart from the style which have made Star Trek great - not even 'Q' did any supernatural rescue from the Borg for example. I shake my head and give a thumbs down on this detail.

    Now if we accept that, and watch this as Space opera in the Star Trek universe.
    Then Dukat's madness is rather fitting, and as such t can be viewed as one heck of an episode for entertainment value, with good action and multiple story lines that make it top notch drama.

    A small correction, it's actually Weyoun who push for the idea of wiping out Earth's population. Whereas Dukat appear to think it might not be necessary if only the will to resist can be broken by a decisive victory.
  • From Axel on 2015-05-09 at 8:13pm:
    Sure, this does end with a deux ex machina as other comments have pointed out. It's made a little more bearable by the fact that the wormhole aliens (hate calling them Prophets) do extract a price from Sisko in exchange for intervening purely at his insistence. Without that aspect, it would've been a lot more ridiculous to simply have them make the Jem'Hadar fleet disappear. It would've begged the question as to why Sisko doesn't just go to the wormhole aliens every time he needs help fighting the Dominion.

    I would've preferred an ending that involved the minefield too. Far too much time was spent on that plot element for it to simply end as abruptly as it did. But the episode still gets an 8 from me for all its other awesomeness.

    It's been suggested that Roddenberry might've included more space battles in TOS if he'd had the budget and technology. This episode shows what that can add: a fantastic visual to go along with the plot. It's also beautifully acted especially by Alaimo.
  • From Zorak on 2016-06-21 at 12:48am:
    All other things aside, the ending with Dukat was surprisingly heart wrenching. As much of a villain as he is and as much as he had it coming to him, I couldn't help but feel for the guy. That was brutal.

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Star Trek DS9 - 6x10 - The Magnificent Ferengi

Originally Aired: 1998-1-1

Synopsis:
The Grand Nagus calls with news that Quark's mother, Ishka, has been captured by the Dominion. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 7.3

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 16 0 2 2 3 5 9 11 18 24 44

Filler Quotient: 1, partial filler, but has important continuity. I recommend against skipping this one.
- Outside of Keevan's ultimate fate, there is nothing significant here from a continuity standpoint. But I strongly recommend watching the episode anyway simply due to how hysterically entertaining it is.

Problems
- Why is Empok Nor shown titled in exterior shots? Why is the station abandoned still? Surely either the Federation or the Dominion would be interested in moving it somewhere to be used as a supplementary defensive position?

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- Vorta are supposed to commit suicide when they're captured, according to Keevan.
- The Vorta Yelgrun in this episode was played by famous musician Iggy Pop.

Remarkable Scenes
- The Starfleet officers stealing Quark's audience. Poor baby...
- Quark telling Rom about the Ishka's relationship with Zek.
- Quark and Rom getting showing up in Sisko's office.
- Leck: "I don't care about latinum." A surreal statement from a Ferengi.
- Brunt to Quark: "A child, a moron, a failure, and a psychopath. Quite a little team you've put together."
- The holosuite practice session.
- Keevan's appearance.
- The whole running scenes on Empok Nor when they thought they lost their prisoner, then running back to the infirmary when the Dominion ship arrived.
- Quark, Rom, and Nog's first meeting with Yelgrun.
- Keevan's final words just after being shot by Gaila: "I hate Ferengi."
- Yulgrun: "And I thought the Breen were annoying."
- Puppet Keevan with his tilted head.
- Puppet Keevan walking into the wall.
- The Ferengi ambushing the Jem'Hadar and capturing Yelgrun. I especially liked Leck throwing a knife into a Jem'Hadar's chest.
- Morn Appearances; 1. Opening scene, listens to Quark's story. 2. Behind Rom in the bar when he talks to Quark about the holosuite practice session results.

My Review
Marvelous; the best Ferengi episode yet. Good connections with DS9: Ferengi Love Songs, with regards to Ishka's relationship with Zek, good connections with DS9: Empok Nor since we get to see Empok Nor again, and good connections with DS9: Rocks and Shoals; we learn the true fate of Keevan. It's a shame we don't get to see Quark tell Sisko the story. I think Sisko would have said something like, "Keevan got exactly what he deserved." Iggy Pop's cameo as Yelgrun was fantastic; the musician makes one hell of a Vorta! The episode features good continuity all around and the team of the six "magnificent Ferengi" is wonderfully constructed and brilliantly played out. I couldn't be happier with this wonderful episode that mixes humor and danger so successfully. Bravo!

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Pete Miller on 2006-07-14 at 11:16pm:
    Yelgrun has a barely tolerable lisp that annoys the hell out of me. It sounds like he's wearing a retainer.
  • From onlinebroker on 2009-11-15 at 12:53am:
    The scene where Nogg checks his grandmas blood is just hilarious. Loved the whole episode, and I agree, great performance by Iggy Pop!
  • From Orion Pimpdaddy on 2010-02-18 at 4:40pm:
    The laughing between Quark and Nog at the end of the episode seems to be an ad-lib. Out of character, but I always laugh with them when I see it.

    I'd probably give it an 8. There's one part that I dislike. It's when Nog, Quark, and Rom first come out to greet Yelgrun. The three stare at each other with these bad-ass looks on their faces. Maybe it was a parody of some old movie, but I thought it was a stupid moment.
  • From rpeh on 2010-08-03 at 3:20am:
    It's a great episode that manages to mix fun and suspense well. The references to westerns make it even better.

    @Orion Pimpdaddy, Gene Roddenberry created star trek as a western in space: "Wagon Train to the Stars" was his description, so homages to the genre are entirely appropriate. It's tough if you don't understand them.
  • From Popescu on 2010-09-21 at 10:55pm:
    This episode is absolutely fantastic! I've never laughed so much watching a ST episode. Watching those little Ferengi banging their heads to form a commando and confront the Dominion was simply amazing.

    "Two slips of latinum to the first who makes it to the infirmary" - I couldn't believe my ears hearing that :)

    A very nice relief episode during the Dominion war and a very very good reuse of characters! Bravos!
  • From MJ on 2011-01-26 at 1:18pm:
    Well, both the Vorta may hate Ferengi, but I love them! Or rather, I love the Ferengi as they are portrayed in DS9, which did the same thing with the Ferengi that TNG did with the Klingons.

    DS9 really made itself better and more rounded by expanding on the Ferengi through episodes like this. The Dominion War, the Maquis, Sisko's struggle with his wife's death, Odo's separation from his people, Kira's stories and the horrific history of the Bajoran persecution...all of these are very serious topics that deal with complex issues. How nice to have the comical Ferengi episodes enter the series every now and again!

    My two favorite scenes in this episode are the bungled rescue operation in the holo suite, and the prisoner exchange at the end. I couldn't stop laughing...very well done!

  • From attractionmagnetical on 2011-07-11 at 2:59am:
    I have to say, Keevan really made this episode for me. His constant disgust while being dragged around the station, his bored expressions while the Ferengi planned, his over-the-top predictions of doom, his dying words, and of course, the behaviour and expressions of puppet Keevan were all priceless. Christopher Shea (the actor who played Keevan) did a delightful job with puppet Keevan; I haven't laughed that hard in awhile. Plus, Iggy Pop made a delightful appearance, too.

    As an old movie buff, I really appreciated the many references to the classic "Magnificent Seven" film, although I suspect that DS9's younger audience may miss a lot of them.
  • From Axel on 2015-08-16 at 11:30pm:
    DS9 really found a great crop of actors to play the recurring Ferengi characters. This episode is their crowning achievement. The ensemble works well together, each one bringing his own hilarity to the group. The return of cousin Gala, the assassin Leck, and of course Jeffrey Combs as ex-Liquidator Brunt combined with the usual trio made for a spectacularly humorous and adventurous episode. Close runner-up to "Little Green Men" as far as Ferengi episodes go. Not a dull moment in this one, and great continuity with other story arcs as well. One of my favorites.

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Star Trek DS9 - 6x19 - In the Pale Moonlight

Originally Aired: 1998-4-15

Synopsis:
Sisko goes to great lengths to enlist Romulan support in the Dominion war. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 8.13

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 22 10 10 4 14 14 7 10 9 37 230

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is the winner of my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- This episode is the winner of my "Best Episode Ever Award."
- This is the 143rd episode of DS9 and the 512th episode of Star Trek, not counting the films. It's the 520th episode counting the films.
- Garak's 29th episode.
- Bio memetic gel is strictly controlled by the Federation and is not for sale at any price.
- The Dominion conquers Betazed in this episode.
- The Romulans declare war on the Dominion in this episode.

Remarkable Scenes
- The teaser, showing the frustration with Romulan inaction and Sisko's determination to put an end to it.
- Dax citing to Sisko the Romulan position from their perspective, pretending to be the Romulan procouncil responding in turn to Sisko's pretend propositions.
- Sisko: "The founders see it as their sacred duty to bring order to the galaxy. Their order. Do you think they'll sit idly by while you keep your chaotic empire right next to their perfect order?"
- Sisko: "Very good old man. You would have made a decent Romulan." Dax: "I prefer the spots to the pointed ears."
- Sisko's initial conversation with Garak, enlisting his help.
- Sisko: "My father used to say that the road to hell is paved with good intentions."
- Garak outlining his plan to manufacture evidence that the Dominion is planning an attack on Romulus.
- Tolar's decidedly negative reaction to his discovery that Garak is aboard the station and that he is to work with him.
- Sisko: "What happened?" Odo: "As I understand it, Mr. Tolar there came in about two hours ago, ordered a bottle of Whelan Bitters, fifteen minutes later he ordered a second bottle, and then a third, half way through his fourth bottle, he decided to dance with Empella; she was otherwise engaged running the Dabo wheel, declined his invitation, he decided to force the issue, a brief struggle ensued, and Quark in an uncharacteristic display of chivalry, attempted to intervene, so Tolar stabbed him."
- Quark, as part of the bribe he requests of Sisko: "I'm also having a problem with station security. Some cargo containers which I've been waiting for because of some missing import license or something--" Sisko: "I'll handle it."
- Garak: "Mind if I join you?" Sisko: "Be my guest." They enter a turbolift. Sisko: "Ops." Garak: "Hold. The less I'm seen parading through ops the better." Sisko: "I couldn't agree more." Garak: "You seem angry." Sisko: "Who's watching Tolar?" Garak: "I've locked him in his quarters. I've also left him with the distinct impression that if he attempts to force the door open, it may explode." Sisko: "I hope that's just an impression." Garak: "It's best not to dwell on such minutia."
- I love Sisko's initial reaction of rejection and then slow acceptable when Garak asks for bio memetic gel to purchase a genuine Cardassian optolithic data rod with.
- Bashir's objections to Sisko's request for bio memetic gel.
- The fake holo recording of Weyoun and Damar plotting against Romulus.
- Sisko freaking out at Tolar.
- Sisko's meeting with Vreenak.
- Vreenak commenting about how for a moment he almost forgot the Romulan drink wasn't the real thing. But only for a moment. Some great foreshadowing there.
- I like how Sisko's conversation with Vreenak went exactly the way Dax predicted it would.
- Vreenak watching the fake holo recording.
- Sisko: "I'm not an impatient man. I'm not one to agonize over decisions once they're made. I got that from my father. He always says worry and doubt are the greatest enemies of a great chef. The souffles will either rise or it won't. There's not a damn thing you can do about it."
- Vreenak: "It's a faaake!" One of the most legendary DS9 quotes.
- Worf delivering the news to Sisko that Vreenak's shuttle was destroyed. I love how Sisko instantly knew Garak did it.
- Sisko confronting Garak about the murder.
- Garak explaining to Sisko why the plan in fact worked perfectly; that the Romulans would in fact declare war on the Dominion.
- The final scene with Sisko trying to convince himself that he can live with what he did, then erasing the entire log entry.
- Rules of Acquisition; 98. Every man has his price.

My Review
In the Pale Moonlight exemplifies everything that made DS9 great. It's an episode in the middle of the Dominion war, which is the best arc ever written on Star Trek and it's a pivotal episode in that arc. Also, it manages to stand on its own very well; even without the backstory as a premise, it would remain most touching. For Avery Brooks puts up one of his best performances ever as Sisko in this episode behind some of the most spectacular directing ever featured on Star Trek. Moreover, the episode's narration is unique. Few, if any Star Trek episodes are told in this original manner, nor is there is a single bit of wasted dialog. Every line is carefully crafted. Every discussion is nicely pointed.

But most importantly, this episode examines the moral center of the human condition at its deepest levels. Captain Sisko is overwhelmingly distraught over the nonstop casualties the Federation is facing in the war with the Dominion. He knows that if the Federation doesn't procure an advantage, a big advantage soon, the Federation will either crumble before the Dominion, or exhaust most of its resources defeating the Dominion. To rectify this situation, Sisko decides he must determine a way to bring the Romulans into the war on the Federation's side. But convincing an empire of billions to go to war for you is no small task...

Well, that's where Mr. Garak comes in. How fitting for the best episode of DS9 to center itself around my favorite character? Sisko approaches Garak, asking him to steal proof from his former homeland that they're planning to attack Romulus so the Romulans will join the war. Garak responds by saying that such a mission would use up all the favors owed to him on Cardassia. And that would be a very messy, very bloody business. Garak asks Sisko if he's prepared to accept the consequences of his services. Sisko responds by saying he's already involved in a very messy, very bloody business. It seemed Sisko didn't realize at first the full extent of what Garak was proposing, perhaps consciously anyway, but subconsciously Sisko knew he was willing to do anything to lessen Federation casualties and if that meant cooperating with Garak in some shady business, then Sisko was willing to do it.

Even more interestingly though is Garak's plan in the first place. Garak knew exactly from the beginning that blowing up Vreenaks's shuttle and making it look like the Dominion did it would be the only way to get the Romulans to declare war on the Dominion. From the impressions I get from Garak, he'd have already done something similar to this deed by now if he had the chance. Yes, Garak skillfully manipulated all of the events of this episode to achieve the result both he and Sisko wanted, even if the means weren't quite what Sisko expected. I saw it in his eyes from his very first scene in this episode: Garak was actually using Sisko to get the Romulans into the war just as much as Sisko was consciously or unconsciously using him.

In the end, Sisko and Garak both knew the same thing: winning the war was going to require the assistance of the Romulans. And as Sisko said in DS9: Rocks and Shoals, "given the choice between us and them, there is no choice." There's no choice but to pay any price to get the Romulans on his side. In this episode of deception and great moral dilemmas we get to see the darkest side of Sisko's personality. We watch as he turns a blind eye to atrocities like murder because the "cause was righteous" and the ends most certainly justified the means.

But even when it was all over, that wasn't the end of our story. Sisko couldn't personally forgive himself for his actions and he felt that maybe recording it all in his log would make him feel better. In the final scene, Sisko tries to convince himself that he can live with what he did, but it's clear that he's having trouble doing just that. So instead of trying to live with it, he tries instead to forget it all by erasing his entire log entry. That act signifies the hypocritical nature of human morals and how easily we abandon them when the situation calls for it. That said, there is certainly enough evil done in this episode in the name of good. And so you have it, the best episode ever done on Star Trek.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Vlad on 2006-03-31 at 7:55am:
    I finally watched this last night. Is the best Star Trek episode ever? I don't know. But it made the list of my favourite episodes. And mine is a short list.

    We've always known that Sisko is human. That's not the issue here. What we come to realize, painfully so, is that he is just as flawed as any 20th century human being. Faced with the paradox "Doing something wrong to do something right", he makes a choice that will cost him his self-respect. And perhaps, it cost him our respect as well.

    Ira Behr said that Trekkies see the captains as gods. Well, this God just sinned!
  • From RichD on 2006-05-02 at 5:56pm:
    In the Pale Moonlight is an astonishing episode. It ranks in my top 5 among any of the 5 series. I remember how tense and riveted I was when I first saw this episode. A stroke of genius retelling this story through Sisko's log entry. The opening scene immediately captures your attention. We all knew one way or another, the Romulans were going to be key players in the war. What we didn't know, is that Sisko would trick them into it?! Would Picard ever do this? I doubt it. He didn't in The Wounded and he wouldn't here. I do believe Kirk would do it.
  • From JTL on 2008-08-17 at 4:37pm:
    This is without a doubt one of the best Star Trek episodes ever done. It is an excellent probe into the human system of moralities and epitomizes what this franchise is all about. Yes, "Favor the Bold" and "Sacrifice of Angels" are awesome, but if there is one postmortem episode I think Gene Roddenberry should be shown if it were at all possible it would be this one. Absolutely astounding. The best? I can't say whether it is or not. However it is very, very high on my list of great episodes.
  • From Abigail on 2008-12-17 at 2:47pm:
    Although I greatly enjoyed the plot, I thought the confession-in-personal-log style of telling the story was very cliche. I'm not so into the confessions. If I ignore that minor annoyance, though, it really was a terrific episode.
  • From Orion Pimpdaddy on 2009-05-05 at 10:00am:
    Sisko's treatment of Tolar (holding him up against the wall, threatening to send him back to the Klingons for execution) is not really consistent with his character. I think they should have cut that part out. Although, he seemed to regret it later by saying "Maybe I was under more pressure than I had realized."

    Other than that nitpic, this is an episode that never gets old.
  • From Jaap on 2010-10-31 at 4:06pm:
    The review says: "Sisko couldn't personally forgive himself for his actions and he felt that maybe recording it all in his log would make him feel better".

    I don't say I don't agree but another possibility occured to me. Sisko has grown to be a very "self-aware" person. He's very confident and has grown more confident in the years on DS9. Like he said: HE fell like he just walked through a door and locked it behind him. HE was going to get the Romulans to enter the war; HE was going to convince Vreenak; HE was going to turn the war around; HE was going to defeat the Dominion; HE was going to get the credits with SF Command (and the rest of the quadrant).

    But then... he didn't see through the plot, he was outsmarted by Garak; he didn't turn the war around but a Cardassian did.

    So i don't think it troubled him all that much that two "innocent" men got killed. Innocent people get killed by the hundreds of thousands at this stage and Sisko has - in some way - been responsible for quite a few deaths himself, just look a the Maquis.

    No, I think the thing that pains him most is the damage inflicted to his self esteem. And that's why he got what he wanted but can't be really happy about it.
  • From Tallifer on 2011-04-21 at 2:18am:
    The point of the Federation is the vision of a utopian future where men have learned to forgo money and concomitant greed, militarism and fascism; where men of all races live in harmony and peace. The moral of Kirk and Picard's inevitable victories of the warlords, maniacs and monsters of outer space was that the Good and the Just will triumph over the Wicked and the Mighty.

    If the Federation must resort to Section 31 and murder, forgery and manipulation, then it is just another sinful empire. Parallel to this is the increasing respect for the militaristic and barbaric Klingons and the selfish and honorless Ferengi through the successive generations of Star Trek.

    I did enjoy this episode, but these stories should not be told about the Federation: it would have been better to set this Deep Space Nine series in a different polity, perhaps someone neutral like the Tholians. Then the stories could be as free of utopianism as the writers want.

    0/10 despite the fun. Simply not Star Trek for me.
  • From Gul Darhe'el on 2012-04-04 at 11:01am:
    During its initial run I didn't get to see much of DS9 beyond early season 4. Also, at the time I was unsure on the direction the series was taking as I found the whole Klingon war story a bit contrived. With that being said, I was stunned at this instant classic years later catching it at random in re-runs. This episode is flawless. Every one (especially the guest stars) turned in spot on performances, the story is completely original, all of the dialogue was interesting and meaningful, I can't say enough. I love the dynamincs and conflict that arise when Sisko employs a small group of professional liars to deceive someone from an ever-skeptical and paranoid race. Simply perfect. I was even more pleasantly surprised upon purchasing the series DVD's that this episode was just one from possibly the best season of Star Trek ever done.
  • From DK on 2013-04-23 at 2:18pm:
    Tallifer got it exactly right.  I can understand making this your best episode ever but not best Star Trek.  The artistic vision of this series is most definitely different from the creators of the Star Trek universe.  I happen to like the direction this series took but it is not the "Star Trek" way.  Witness what Roddenberry did when he got a second bite at the apple and created The Next Generation and contrast it with the gritty nature of DS9.  DS9 is a fine vision of the future and a wonderful premise for a show but the differences Tallifer mentions between it and what the vision of the future the creator of Star Trek  had preclude this episode from being the best of what Star Trek has to offer (IMHO).  
    I completely understand the dilemma.  If put on the spot to name my favorite I suppose, like many others, I would choose The Wrath of Kahn.  Ricardo Mantalban was a formidable presence.  Much criticism could be leveled at TWOK too but in the end entertainment is the highest measuring stick but may be different from what Star Trek was all about.
  • From BigBoss on 2013-10-08 at 5:39pm:
    To claim that the episode doesn't mesh with Roddenberry's "Trek" is a bit of a misnomer, since Roddenberry's closest vision of Trek was Season 1 of TNG (which is almost universally derided as the worst season).

    The issue is that TNG/TOS are well, cartoonish in their morals. You can still tell a great store, but, their stories preclude the possibility of a no-win scenario. Or, to put it even more bluntly, that the only right solution is a morally corrupt one.

    This is what makes this episode, and conversly DS9, such a breath of fresh air in the series. Characters have baggage, they have decisions that they wear the repercussions of as scars, instead of everything getting neatly trimmed up at the end of each episode and perhaps not mentioned again. In TNG we never really see anyone make the tough decisions because plot contrivance always foregoes that possibility. The weight of decisions is where DS9 really shines.
  • From OmicronThetaDeltaPhi on 2014-06-29 at 9:43pm:
    Wow! This is one of those episodes where you leave the TV screen and tell yourself "Now THAT'S what a perfect 10 episode looks like".

    It's impressive. It's captivating. It's full of moral dilemmas. Bravo, Deep Space Nine!

    As for the claims of this episode being "Un-Roddenberry", I disagree. Sisko simply had no choice, but to do what he did. And he didn't do it to save his ship, or even to save the Federation. He did it to save the entire Alpha Quadrant - including those Romulans he lied to.

    And I think that the very fact that Sisko agonized over the whole affair of "presenting a lie as truth", demonstrates how far the morals of humanity have come in the 24th century. A 21st century person wouldn't even blink an eye over this, when the stakes are so high. Yet Sisko feels wretched by what he did. And Why? Because as a Starfleet officer, he values the truth. And this, in my opinion, makes this episode very Roddenberry.
  • From Phil on 2015-08-22 at 1:03am:
    I don't necessarily see this as being against the spirit of Star Trek if you frame Roddenberry's two series in a slightly different light from what's been presented in the comments so far.

    Rather than "Mankind will eventually evolve beyond militarism and pettiness" I believe the takeaway of TOS and TNG should be "if technological progress leads to eradicating scarcity, then mankind can put aside its pettiness, etc."

    This leaves room for the Dominion arc--in the first two series you never see the Federation face an existential threat that lasts more than an episode or two. Here you see what would really happen to a society that has its back against the wall, and I believe that both this portrayal and the TNG portrayal are in line with human nature--it's only the context that has changed. Technology and progress can remove the internal causes for base, primitive behavior, but they can't change human nature.
  • From Phi on 2015-09-13 at 11:56am:
    This episode also reminded me of this quotation from Frank Herbert's "God Emperor of Dune":

    "I know the evil of my ancestors because I am those people. The balance is delicate in the extreme. I know that few of you who read my words have ever thought about your ancestors this way. It has not occurred to you that your ancestors were survivors and that the survival itself sometimes involved savage decisions, a kind of wanton brutality which civilized humankind works very hard to suppress. What price will you pay for that suppression? Will you accept your own extinction?"
  • From tigertooth on 2017-01-06 at 12:10am:
    I gave this a 10 so this didn't hang me up too terribly much, but...

    One the Romulan learned the recording was a fake, wouldn't he have transmitted that info to Romulus immediately? Like even before meeting Sisko? If he does that, the whole plan flops.

    I think Garak's plan could have been identical if he had just gotten the Romulans to come to the station for any old reason. He can still hide the rod on their ship then blow them up and he gets the same result.

    Though, of course, I'd think Romulus would be wondering why the killed Romulans didn't send them a message saying they had come into possession of extremely vital information.

    But whatever. I'm not going to let that seriously get in the way of such a great episode.
  • From McCoy on 2017-03-02 at 12:49pm:
    While I love DS9, I can't agree it's the best episode ever made. DS9 has without doubt best characters in all Trek (not so boring, soulless mannekins as i.e. TNG or Voy). Even secondary characters, like Weyoun or Garak, are greatly written and performed (why they couldn't write interesting characters in other series is beyond my imagination). However, I'm not a fan of military space opera. I like different kind of s-f - speculations about "what if...", about mystery things in Universe, about human's place in Universe. But not war with aliens. You can make film about war without all that s-f stuff, it's irrelevant. And it's irrelevant here. Maybe it's good episode, mabybe Dominion story arc is good, but... It's not good s-f for me. It lacks that "something". 7/10 is max I can vote for Pale Moonlight, sorry.
  • From Axel on 2018-06-17 at 12:10am:
    Interesting takes on this episode. I can't really go along with the notion that this, and DS9 in general, go against Roddenberry's Trek vision, though.

    First, TOS and TNG episodes weren't always neatly packaged stories about good triumphing over evil. Kirk faced a comparable moral dilemma to Sisko's-allowing one to die so millions could be saved-in TOS: City on the Edge of Forever. Picard wrestled with numerous Prime Directive violations, showing that Federation values were sometimes at odds with another, perhaps more moral, course of action. And what about when Nechayev scolded him for not sending Hugh back to the Borg and wiping them all out? Moral dilemmas indeed.

    Second, as Phil pointed out, the Federation faces an existential threat in the Dominion. Under such circumstances, things are bound to get messy. Nothing like that was ever quite shown in TOS or TNG, although in TNG: BOBW, Picard is co-opted by the Borg.

    Third, I don't even agree that this goes against Roddenberry's "vision" of what the future or the Federation were supposed to be. It wasn't a future where all moral problems, ethical dilemmas, and human shortcomings disappeared completely. It was a future where the modern societal problems of poverty, hunger, racism, sexism, corruption, and lack of opportunity had disappeared. Faced with an external threat, though, that future society may make decisions that are still human and survival-driven. And even if the DS9 Federation didn't meet Roddenberry's standards, it's a reminder that the course of human history has a "bunny-hop" rhythm to it: sometimes taking two steps forward, one back.

    Anyway, this episode is an amazing story. Sisko and Garak, as it turns out, were using each other. But Garak has no moral qualms about the outcome; Sisko does. This didn't feature a lot of "science-fiction" but it did what Star Trek does best: it gives you multiple points of view and makes you think, all with a gripping plot from beginning to end. Definitely one of the best Trek episodes ever.
  • From Thavash on 2019-01-01 at 7:25am:
    The final scene between Garak and Sisko is a masterpiece

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Star Trek DS9 - 7x04 - Take Me Out to the Holosuite

Originally Aired: 1998-10-21

Synopsis:
A group of Deep Space Nine rookies answer Sisko's challenge to try and beat a Vulcan baseball team. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 3.72

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 133 22 8 7 6 7 8 12 14 20 54

Filler Quotient: 2, filler, but an enjoyable episode nevertheless. You can skip this one, but you'd miss out on some fun.
- Strictly speaking this episode is not relevant to the overarching plot of DS9, but it's highly entertaining and among the finest episode fo the entire series nevertheless.

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- This episode is one of many which confirms the idea that Starfleet largely segregates their facilities and starships by race. Evidence: all Vulcan crew starship T'Kumbra.
- Kassidy says that Vulcans have three times the strength of humans. Sisko said, "and they're faster too."
- The music at the beginning of the baseball game is supposedly the anthem for the United Federation of Planets.

Remarkable Scenes
- The opening scene introducing Captain Solok of the T'Kumbra. Vulcan arrogance at its best! If I didn't know better, I'd swear the guy was Romulan.
- The particularly pathetic performance of the team during the initial tryouts.
- Sisko asking Odo to be the umpire.
- I love the scene when Kira walks by the security office as Odo is practicing his umpire moves.
- Sisko telling the Solok story.
- Solok eliminating the spectators.
- Worf and Sisko arguing with Odo the umpire.
- Sisko restoring Rom's status in the team and restoring the crowd.
- Rom's accidental bunt and the subsequent run scored because of it.
- Odo throwing out the Solok.
- Sisko and crew's victory celebration.
- Morn Appearances; 1. Is seen in the bar after Sisko kicks Rom of the team. 2. In the bar after Sisko declares "manufactured triumph."

My Review
Hilarious. The "Logicians" vs. the "Niners". This episode is both a spectacle of marvelous humor and a fantastic display of camaraderie. The episode is also highly controversial. Let's have a look why. Here we are, in the middle of the Dominion war, and this ship the T'Kumbra, a ship of all Vulcans, docks on DS9 for repairs. Captain Solok, however, has an ulterior motive for coming to Deep Space Nine. He has had a long time rivalry with Sisko for many years and wished to challenge Sisko in his favorite game. Many say that this episode which deals with a Baseball game has nothing whatsoever to do with the Dominion war and that it merely serves to waste time; that it's nothing but filler. While in some ways I agree, the episode couldn't have been better filler. The conflict between Sisko and Solok mirrors that of the Dominion war. The Federation faces an enemy many times more powerful than itself, yet they continue to fight and continue to take pleasure in whatever small victories they can achieve. The "small victory" in this episode, or rather the "manufactured triumph" parallels wonderfully the rivalry Solok seems to have manufactured over the years. Sisko wanted to let it go, but Solok didn't. Also, this episode parallels TOS in many ways. The rivalry between Solok and Sisko reminded me a lot of the (admittedly less intense) rivalry between Spock and McCoy. Finally, I think it's remarkable to point out that this episode made extensive use of the holosuites without featuring a malfunction. Overall, this is one of the most successful and intelligently written humor episodes ever written.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Azduel on 2010-03-30 at 9:45pm:
    This episode is definitely exciting and entertaining. It's great because it gives a bit of a break from the intensity of the Dominion war, and also because it develops an "out of uniform" look into the characters. However I hate to nitpick, but there are a few elements to this episode I found annoying. Firstly, why is Bashir so bad? He should be better than any of the Vulcans, as he is genetically engineered for coordination etc. Second, why is Worf so terrible? Worf presumably spends all of his downtime in the holosuite improving his prowess as a warrior. Surely a lifetime of physical training should produce someone who can hit a ball with a bat, he should be able to knock it out of the park every time!
  • From rpeh on 2010-08-04 at 11:28am:
    I'm not a big fan of baseball - it's just rounders played while wearing pyjamas - but this was pretty fun to watch even so, and it's good to see the writers not falling into the trap of having the Niners win.

    One lovely touch was Quarks signature on the ball at the end, with a little pair of ears on the Q.
  • From MJ on 2011-01-29 at 7:39am:
    Overall, a great episode. Parts of it were painfully embarrassing to watch, but most of it was hilarious. I think I cracked up after every single one of Odo’s calls (Ball Three! Steeeerrrrrike Two! Yooouuu’re outta here!) Auberjonois did a great job putting so much gusto into it...Odo approaches every task wanting to get all the little details right, and this time it made for some nice comic relief to see him imitate an Earth umpire. And Worf’s “death to the opposition” and “find him and kill him” were classic. Somehow I think rugby would be more to a Klingon’s liking than baseball.

    This episode also showed the Federation isn’t really a big happy family. Even species within the Federation sometimes look down on each other, which I think is more realistic than pretending they all get along just fine and dandy. They may share a desire for peace and exploration, but think about it: no matter what country you go to in the world today, people in different regions of that country tend to look down on other regions. Star Trek is just carrying this to the galactic level, and it makes perfect sense.
  • From Damien Bradley on 2013-03-02 at 1:48am:
    I almost skipped this episode when it became clear it was going to be a holodeck/holosuite filler episode. But then I came here and skimmed your review, and how could I skip an episode you rated a 10? Anyway, I sure am glad I watched it. It kept me laughing well into the next day. I could almost predict by the time the game was underway that they were going to get creamed, but my hunch was right that somehow Sisko would call it a victory anyway. I love how much Odo got into his role, and you could see he took pride in being impartial, but you could also see the smile on his face when he ejected the Vulcan captain from the game. The exchange in the bar toward the end was priceless.

    Worf: "Death to the opposition!"
  • From Keith on 2013-08-26 at 8:13pm:
    Enjoyed this episode but it falls into a trap many series fall into in that the main characters are the only people who exist. Captain Sisko commands a space station and a star ship he has to have more competent crewmen than Nog for instance. And Quark is not a member of his crew. I understand that the series is about the lead actors but if Sisko wanted to win (which he did before he learned the heart warming lesson of camaraderie) he would have put together a much better team.
  • From mandeponium on 2014-01-02 at 3:01pm:
    A baseball episode was inevitable and I'm just glad it was as good as it was. This is the kind of episode that works best late in a series and would not have had the same punch if they had done it in season 2 or 3.
  • From Armsauce on 2017-06-29 at 9:22pm:
    Why was Solok allowed in the holosuite unannounced?

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Star Trek DS9 - 7x07 - Once More Unto the Breach

Originally Aired: 1998-11-11

Synopsis:
Worf is surprised to be paid a visit by Kor, an aging Klingon war hero. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 5.07

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 63 1 5 2 2 7 7 11 22 28 29

Filler Quotient: 0, not filler, do not skip this episode.
- This is Kor's final episode and one of the finest episode of all of DS9.

Problems
None

Factoids
This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."

Remarkable Scenes
- The Davy Crockett conversation.
- Martok's decidedly negative reaction to both paperwork and Worf's mentioning of Kor.
- Martok: "Clear the bridge!!"
- Martok: "I would not give that man the gnawed bones of my last meal!"
- Martok: "You can wound a man without ever seeing his face."
- Martok telling his story explaining why he hates Kor.
- Ezri and Kira discussing Kor.
- Quark drawing the wrong conclusion after partially eavesdropping on Kira's and Ezri's conversation.
- The battle.
- Kor taking command when Worf and Martok fell.
- Kor's poor decisions.
- Quark confronting Ezri.
- Kor: "Savor the fruit of life, my young friends. It has a sweet taste when it is fresh from the vine. But don't live too long. The taste turns bitter after a time."
- Kor going in Worf's place.
- Martok and crew drinking and singing to Kor's success.
- Morn Appearances; 1. Is seen during the Davy Crockett conversation. 2. Seen at the bar after Quark eavesdrops on Kira's and Ezri's conversation. 3. Is in the bar when Quark confronts Ezri.

My Review
A story to wrap up Kor's involvement in DS9. Kor's final cameo couldn't have been done better. It wasn't just the bland and obvious "I want to die an honorable death" story either. It examines real issues with the Klingon aging process, showing us an old Klingon who's losing his memory. The episode has nicely pointed dialog all around, and I'm most fond of Martok in this episode. Despite this episode focusing on Kor, Martok shines. I love watching him go from bitter, to sympathetic, to proud regarding Kor. And I loved watching Kor slowly begin to realize his failings. DS9 proves to us once again that a Klingon centric story taking place on a Klingon ship is a wonderful setting for a story, and this episode reinforces our impression of the deep and honorable culture of the Klingon Empire. Another spectacular episode.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From S. Egil on 2009-08-16 at 8:21pm:
    This episode cleverly links the idea of Davy Crockett's heroic death with the lament of Cor, who has been denied such a glorious end. Cor's complaints sound remarkably like those found in the old Norse epics. Some modern viewers reject the warrior ethos entirely, but the episode convincingly expresses and even defends it, ending with the traditional and appropriate violence and sentimentality. As Worf says in the prologue, if you belive in the legend (of Crockett), you will believe he died a hero. Worf and the other Klingons would know that a tribe (or nation) that stops believing in its heores is doomed to extinction: an imbedded message in this episode?
  • From MJ on 2011-08-04 at 4:57pm:
    I think this is the best episode of Season 7, and one of my favorites in all of DS9. It's got everything you could want in an episode: action, drama, conflict, depth of character and meaningful interactions...and they managed to unfold everything perfectly. You really feel for all the main characters here. Martok, whose hard work and family sacrifices were crushed because he wasn't of noble birth, is consumed with bitterness after hearing Kor's name...at first, of course. Worf, who is trying to do a favor to a revered friend. And of course, Kor, who just wants what every Klingon wants: an honorable death in battle. His quote about savoring the fruit of life was quite a powerful moment. I also loved the character of Darok, the old aid to Martok. He had a couple of funny lines, and his conversation with Kor at the end where he reveals Worf's plan knowing that this will be the opportunity Kor has been looking for was a brilliant way to bring about the end drama. I also like when he offers up blood wine on the bridge, perhaps harkening back to the days when Klingon warriors drank whenever they pleased.

    Martok, who is my favorite Klingon character in all of Star Trek, is shown once again why he is a natural leader. He has all the qualities one would want, and most are brought to bear in this episode: a smart plan of attack, fairness in hearing Worf's reasoning and granting his request despite his bitterness toward Kor, and ultimately of course, realizing that seeing Kor a senile old man brings him no real satisfaction, and although he never says it outright, forgives and even honors Kor.

    This was DS9 at its best. A well deserved 10.
  • From Jim Mumford on 2014-01-26 at 9:20am:
    - Kor: "Saver the fruit of life, my young friends. It has a sweet taste when it is fresh from the vine. But don't live too long. The taste turns bitter after a time."

    Aint dat the truth !
  • From Thavash on 2019-01-06 at 2:48pm:
    Fantastic episode. When Kor delivers his “fruit of life” quote it’s one of the best scenes of the season

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Star Trek DS9 - 7x13 - Field of Fire

Originally Aired: 1999-2-10

Synopsis:
Ezri must solve a series of murders by summoning Joran, one of her previous incarnations. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 4.18

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 122 8 5 8 4 12 12 17 61 23 23

Filler Quotient: 2, filler, but an enjoyable episode nevertheless. You can skip this one, but you'd miss out on some fun.
- One of DS9's best episodes, but nothing here is relevant to the overarching plot.

Problems
- Why the hell did O'Brien and Julian reject Ilario's request to join them in the holosuite? They invited Odo to be Santa Anna!
- Why does Odo have to wear goggles during O'Brien's melon demonstration? It's not as if his eyes needed protecting...
- You've got to wonder why the TR-116 with the microtransporter modification isn't something that Starfleet is producing en masse, especially with the war on and all. Maybe the microtransporter is subject to easy jamming.

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- According to Odo there are over 900 Starfleet officers on the station.
- According to the computer, there are 48 Vulcans on DS9. Well, 47 after this episode.

Remarkable Scenes
- Ilario: "You know something, Lieutenant, you're very beautiful." Ezri: "And you're very drunk." Ilario: "True enough. But in the morning, I'll be sober, and you'll still be beautiful."
- Ezri's dream, featuring a brief piano performance by Joran.
- Bashir and O'Brien discussing weapon fetishes and how some historical men would give female names to their guns changing the relationship from owner and object to something resembling man and woman. O'Brien in response: "Maybe I'll start calling my tricorder Sally."
- O'Brien realizing that the killer is using displaced targeting.
- O'Brien's melon demonstration.
- Ezri summoning Joran.
- Joran: "Handsome weapon." Ezri: "If you say so." Joran: "Come now, even you have to admire the aesthetic qualities inherent in its design, it conveys a sense of danger, of power, just looking from the trigger to the muzzle conjures up images of death. Take it down."
- Ezri using the TR-116 like the killer would, on Joran's advice, attempting to come up with a personality profile of the killer.
- Ezri talking to herself, or rather Joran, in public.
- Joran, regarding Quark: "How I'd love to slip a knife between his ribs."
- Ezri almost killing the man Odo was chasing because of Joran.
- Ezri discovering that the killer is targeting people who have pictures of laughing people in their quarters.
- I love the way onlookers kind of stare at Ezri when she talks to Joran in public, wondering who she's talking to.
- Joran staring into the face of the Vulcan on the turbolift, sure that he'd found the killer.
- Ezri looking up Chu'lak's history, then using the TR-116 to spy on him in his quarters only to discover that he picked her as his next victim!
- Ezri shooting Chu'lak.
- Ezri: "Tell me, why did you do it!" Chu'lak: "Because logic demanded it."
- Morn Appearances; 1. Walks down an empty and dark promenade with a giggling woman. 2. Is seen very briefly when Ezri fights the man Odo was chasing in Quark's.

My Review
Introducing the TR-116 with a microtransporter modification. The perfect assassin's weapon. It's a shame that we didn't get to hear Garak's opinion of the weapon. I think he would have been proud. Half the fun of this episode for me is my fascination over the ingenious weapon design. The other half is the wonderful character development we get for Ezri, finally. Joran was an underused concept when Jadzia was Dax, thankfully he gets another shot here and he excels as the murderous madman we thought he was. This is an episode which gets just about every detail right, Ezri as a psychologist is doing her job assisting Odo in a murder investigation, Ezri as a Trill is using the knowledge of her past lives, including that of Joran, and O'Brien the engineer discovers what the murder weapon must have been and builds a replica. For once, everyone is perfectly in character! The musical score is exceptionally good, better than usual, the overall tenseness of the episode is nicely high, and finally the murderer was a perfect fit. I absolutely loved the idea of a Vulcan that hates emotion and his singular reason for why he was doing this was just the perfect thing to say, "because logic demanded it." Overall, this is Ezri's best episode and one of my all time favorites of the series.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Remco on 2009-07-28 at 4:51pm:
    Did Ron Moore get the idea for a virtual Six in Baltar's head on BSG from this episode?
  • From JR on 2012-07-01 at 10:39pm:
    I don't understand how the crew jumped to the conclusion that the tritanium bullet was fired from close range.
    O'brien: " According to these readings, the bullet only traveled 8 or 9 centimeters."
    Sisko: "Then the killer must have fired at point blank range."
    Odo: "I don't think so; there are no powder burns on the body."

    A bit of circular logic there...what exactly is the tricorder detecting to if not powder burns? The bullet's odometer? If that were the case, Obrien would say 8.63 cm, not "8 or 9 cm".

    Taking it one step further, why wouldn't some of the powder be present anyway. If it is as conventional as Sisko claims, there would in fact be hot gases expanding right aside that bullet at the muzzle and they would be transported as well.

    I liked the episode's premise, but between the Xray snooper scope, the false logic, and the very abrupt ending (Joran immediately convincing Ezri that particular Vulcan was the killer out of 28 possible, and actually being correct) I don't think it was particularly well done. I'd give it a 5 or 6.
  • From Lt. Fitz on 2012-07-07 at 6:01pm:
    Not a great episode. It seemed too easy to find the murderer, and Joran annoyed the heck out of me with his weird and creepy muttering. Lots of good bits, but just it didn't fall together for me.
  • From Damien Bradley on 2013-09-25 at 2:32am:
    This was a nice episode, but I'm surprised at its 10 rating here. The suspense was pretty well done, especially right as Ezri sets her sights on the Vulcan setting sights on her.

    Some things didn't work well for me: first, Trek has a penchant for ridiculously powerful weapons. A phaser that can disintegrate a person in one blast is a long-standing staple, and now a gun that can deliver a high-speed bullet anywhere in the surrounding area, complete with a headset that can see anywhere? That's arguably more powerful than a phaser. I'm surprised no one's thought of it yet. Even the headset alone means goodbye to privacy for anyone. But that's one of the unfortunate effects of technology in Trek. So much of it is so over-the-top powerful that the writers haven't really thought through the ramifications of it all.

    I really wanted there to come something after the climax. The Vuclan said "logic demanded it." I wanted to know his reasoning and some kind of epilogue to the whole thing.

    I felt the dynamic between Ezri and Joran was a little cheesy. So the Trill have a ritual they can do to where they can temporarily hallucinate one of their past lives and converse with them? And they have to do another ritual to make it go away? I would have preferred something more subtle. (I don't remember if we've seen this ritual before.) I also would have liked Joran to be a little less one-dimensional.

    Anyway, it's nice we're seeing lots of Ezri. She has a lot of catching up to do in terms of character development (and yes, she's cute as a button, maybe too much sometimes).
  • From Axel on 2015-06-06 at 11:27am:
    I agree with Damien's point about the Vulcan's motives. I was hoping to know a bit more, aside from the archetypical Vulcan "logic demanded it" response. That's the lazy way to wrap this up. Clearly there was some emotion behind what he was doing stemming from the loss of his companions. The inclusion of Joran was a fantastic story element, but his murderer profile was dragged on at the expense of the Vulcan.

    I do disagree with the point about the high-speed bullet, though. Phasers would have a lot of other advantages over projectile weapons. It's easier to control the intensity, you can charge them rather than continuously load them, and they are no doubt lighter and more wieldy.

    Overall, good Trill episode, good Dax episode, and good suspense. Murder mystery is rare for Trek, but this was done very nicely.

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Star Trek DS9 - 7x25 - What You Leave Behind, Part I

Originally Aired: 1999-6-2

Synopsis:
As Cardassians revolt against the Dominion, the Federation and its allies start to get an upper hand in the war. Meanwhile evil brews from another front. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 4.76

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 106 7 5 2 2 2 4 4 5 16 86

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award".
- Garak's 38th episode.
- Mila's third appearance.
- The plaque on the Sao Paulo's wall has been changed to reflect the ship's name change to the Defiant. The physical markings on the ship were also changed back as well as the registry.
- Some of the battle footage used in this episode was taken from previous battles. A few ship internal scenes were even taken from the destruction of the Duras sisters' ship in Star Trek VII: Generations.

Remarkable Scenes
- The sight of the massive fleet mounting to attack Cardassia.
- Kira in a Breen refrigeration suit.
- Worf regarding Ezri's relationship with Bashir: "I am happy for you." Ezri: "That's a relief." Worf: "But, I am going to kill him." Ezri: "You're kidding, right?" Worf: "And Jadzia said I did not have a sense of humor."
- Quark realizing Vic Fontaine cheated when they played Go Fish.
- Weyoun announcing that Lacarian city on Cardassia has been leveled in response to the terrorist attacks, killing two million people.
- The beginning of the battle.
- Mila's sarcastic(?) crush on Damar.
- Mila's death. Poor woman. She didn't deserve that.
- O'Brien telling Julian that he's leaving DS9 and moving back to Earth.
- The Cardassian fleet joining the fight against the Dominion.
- Female shapeshifter: "I want the Cardassians exterminated." Weyoun: "Which ones?" Female shapeshifter: "All of them. The entire population."
- Garak: "My Cardassia is gone." Kira: "Then fight for a new Cardassia." Garak: "I have an even better reason, commander. Revenge." Kira: "That works too."
- The sight of the Dominion defense perimeter in orbit of Cardassia Prime.

My Review
Here we go, the final battle. The fighting displayed its usual awesomeness, and we got a few new plot twists as well. In response to the terrorism committed by Kira, Garak, and Damar, the female shapeshifter has begun leveling Cardassian cities. In response to the destruction of Cardassian cities, the Cardassian fleet has switched sides and has begun fighting for the Federation. And as a result of these events, the allied fleet has driven the Dominion all the way back to Cardassia Prime. Seeing as how the planet is surrounded and the population of the planet is revolting, looks like the Dominion's gonna lose. On other fronts, we get an update as to what Winn and Dukat are doing after one episode of silence. We finally get to see the fire caves, which is cool. The Federation and its allies are about to fight a major battle and it looks as though that Prophets and the Pah-wraiths are about to fight one too.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Tallifer on 2011-05-01 at 8:20am:
    How do some people rate this zero or one? Do they simply hate Star Trek and stumbled onto the wrong website in their search for Jersey Shore?

    This final story was amazing. Space battles. Intrigue and rebellion. The final battle between the pah-wraiths and the prophets.

    And I must confess that the extended epilogue detailing everyone's final fate brought tears to my eyes.
  • From Inga on 2013-07-06 at 11:37am:
    The last two episodes were indeed marvelous, but the pah wraith battle was pretty silly and banal (a tired concept of good vs evil).

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Star Trek DS9 - 7x26 - What You Leave Behind, Part II

Originally Aired: 1999-6-2

Synopsis:
The confrontation with the Dominion comes to a climax, as does Sisko's fate. [DVD]

My Rating - 10

Fan Rating Average - 4.83

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 102 5 4 3 6 7 3 6 8 15 83

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

Problems
None

Factoids
- This episode is a candidate for my "Best Episode of DS9 Award."
- Garak's 39th episode.
- Well in excess of 800 million were killed on Cardassia Prime during the founder's genocidal campaign.
- One of the punches Sisko throws at Dukat actually landed. Marc Alaimo ended up going to the hospital still in full Cardassian make up to be treated.

Remarkable Scenes
- Female shapeshifter: "My loyal Weyoun. The only solid I have ever trusted."
- Damar and his group charging into the Cardassian Central Command building.
- Garak murdering Weyoun.
- Winn poisoning Dukat.
- Seeing Cardassia Prime completely destroyed in an external shot.
- Odo meeting with the female shapeshifter.
- Odo linking with the female shapeshifter, curing her, and making her finally understand the solids the way Odo does.
- Martok: "This is a moment worth savoring. To victory! Hard fought and well earned." Martok kept the promise he made at this time last year. Martok, Sisko, and Ross shared blood wine on Cardassia Prime.
- Martok, regarding the dead Cardassians: "Bajorans would call this poetic justice."
- Bashir and Garak discussing the aftermath of the war for Cardassia.
- The female shapeshifter officially surrendering aboard DS9.
- Ross: "Today the guns are silent. The great tragedy has ended. We have known the bitterness of defeat and the exhortation of triumph. From both we have learned there can be no going back. We must move forward to preserve in peace what we've won in war."
- Worf becoming Federation ambassador to the Klingon Empire.
- Sisko confronting Dukat.
- Sisko to Dukat: "First the Dominion, now the Pah-wraith. You have a talent for picking the losing sides!"
- Dukat killing Kai Winn.
- Sisko plunging himself and Dukat into the Pah-wraith's fire.
- Sisko's meeting with Kassidy in the Celestial Temple, declaring that his life isn't linear, that he could be back at any time, future or past, and that he *will* be back, for the prophets still have much for him to do.
- Chief O'Brien finding the little toy soldier he thought Julian lost.
- The flashbacks.
- Quark's last scene with Odo.
- Odo curing his people and rejoining the Great Link.
- Lieutenant Nog. Cool!
- Kira examining Sisko's baseball. He left it... he'll be back...
- Quark, after being accosted by Kira for setting up gambling pools on who's going to be the next Kai: "The more things change, the more they stay the same." These were the last words spoken on DS9.
- Jake and Kira observing the wormhole as the camera zooms away from the station...
- Morn Appearances; 1. Is shown during the flashback to DS9: Badda-Bing Badda-Bang. 2. Sells Morn a compound that's "guaranteed to grow hair within a week." 3. Quark's last line, the final words spoken on DS9, were addressed to Morn.

My Review
Even when the founder is captured, the war is still not over, for the Jem'Hadar and the Breen will fight to the last man. She was so bitter, she was willing to let the war drag on until every one of her soldiers were killed before she surrendered. But Odo, in his everlasting forgiveness for his people, was able to finally make the female shapeshifter understand solids as he does when he linked with her and cured her. And so ends the Dominion war. The war was wrapped up early on, which I liked. It gave the episode time to wrap up the Prophets vs. Pah-wraith conflict that's been building as well; Dukat and Sisko duke it out one last time. As a result, Dukat burns in "hell" with the Pah-wraiths for eternity and Sisko is elevated to "heaven" in the Celestial Temple. I like how the writers left the "fate" of his character relatively open ended. He may, no, he *will* return! Worf leaves the station too, going to the Klingon Empire to spend some time with Martok as the Federation ambassador to Kronos. And O'Brien leaves as well, returning to Earth to become a professor at Starfleet academy, I'm sure much to Keiko's delight. She never liked DS9. The finale seems to capture everything that made DS9 so great over the years. The attention to detail in the various send offs for the characters was great; I must say I truly feel more satisfied with this finale than I have with any other before. Even if we never see a DS9 movie, or more episodes depicting the station, I'll be happy with how the show ended. This episode gives us real closure for the first time ever in Star Trek. And so ends Star Trek Deep Space Nine, which is in my opinion the greatest Star Trek series ever done.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Pete Miller on 2006-07-29 at 2:29am:
    This finale makes "All Good Things..." look like an article of trash. DS9 stayed true to itself down to the bitter end. Everyone doesn't live happily ever after and stay together on the station for a set of new movies. No, DS9 is a very human show, a very realistic one. Though I've heard the writers and producers say that DS9 contains so many shades of gray, the finale was very clear cut. When the founder ordered the eradication of the Cardassians, you could see pure evil in her face. On the same token, Sisko made the ultimate sacrifice for Good in the end.

    The finale captured everything DS9 was about, as well. It had awesome action sequences, political intrigue, ethereal matters, and of course emotional and moral matters. Towards the end, when Sisko sacrificed himself, I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes. When he kissed Kassidy in the celestial temple and she realized what he had done, I absolutely burst into tears. I'm a grown man, and there are very few things that make me cry. The conclusion was truly powerful, and it is something I will never forget.

    In the end, the show is about people. It's about the imperfection of humanity, something not covered in other Star Trek series. However, contrary to many critics' opinions, DS9 shows the most optimistic picture of the future of any of the Star Trek series. It shows that, even with our faults, humans will make the right decisions and contribute positively to the universe in the future when all is said and done. For every man like Sloan or the Female Shapeshifter, there is a greater man like Sisko or O'brien. I wholeheartedly agree with Eric when I say that DS9 is, without question, FAR superior to every other Star Trek series.

    Finally I know it's kind of corny to award this to the finale, but I am absolutely compelled to award "Best Episode of DS9" to "What You Leave Behind". It simply embodies everything DS9 is about; all the things I mentioned above. If I had to take an episode of DS9 to someone and say "this episode is what DS9 is", then this is the one. It is indescribably powerful and moving, especially if you have seen all 7 seasons culminate up to that point. It may very well be the best episode of Star Trek period, but I haven't seen all of Voyager or Enterprise yet, so I can't pass judgement.

    All I can say is "Deep Space Nine, you will be missed."
  • From rpeh on 2010-08-05 at 6:05pm:
    A good finale; nay, a great one - but not without its flaws. The flashbacks were mawkish and sentimental, and I have a feeling that the war was over a bit too quickly.

    There's also a sense of an attempt to seal the fates of several characters - and the DVD extras even have Ira Behr saying that was the intent. Resolving O'Brien and Worf looks to me like an attempt to give closure to TNG more than DS9, but what's next for Kira, Dax, and Bashir?

    Turning the battle between the Prophets and the Pah-wraiths into a christian-like Heaven vs Hell struggle didn't sit well with me either.

    DS9 set new heights for Star Trek. I think two or three TNG episodes were better than anything the series had to offer, entirely because Patrick Stewart was the best actor ever to grace the Trek franchise, but there can't be any doubt that the average on DS9 was higher than anywhere else, and it had its own fair share of hits.

    The only problem is that by wrapping up some characters and not others, the writers essentially ruined any chance of a film being made.

    This episode gets an 8 for being too sentimental, but the series gets a full 10.
  • From MJ on 2011-01-29 at 1:00pm:
    Decent finale. But not great. DS9 bit off more than it could chew in this final episode. In TNG, they focused the entire two-part ending on the one problem and involved the entire crew coming together to solve it, while also being able to reflect back on earlier themes throughout the show. In DS9, they tried to wrap up the Dominion War, the Prophets/Pah-Wraith thing, and also send the individual characters on their separate paths all in one two-parter. And it didn’t go well in my view.

    The Dominion War ended very suddenly. This was DS9’s greatest contribution to Star Trek, and while the final battle was spectacular, there are just so many unanswered questions. Most of the episode should have been focused on the war and its aftermath, and maybe Section 31 which is a potentially huge subplot. Instead, a lot of time is spent wrapping up this Pah-Wraith struggle, which is probably DS9’s worst contribution to Star Trek and I think damages the show’s credibility somewhat. Not only that, but we have to endure one final scene of Vic Fontaine’s singing rather than actual plot. What a waste of time.

    Then we have a series of scenes that try to clarify what will happen to each person. It’s an odd transition between the Dominion War struggle and the Pah-Wraith fight. It slows things down and gets you ready for the end, but then suddenly Sisko goes back to fight a possessed Dukat and "dies" in an apocalyptic battle that also ends very suddenly. Following this is a quick attempt to focus on how this impacts Yates and Jake, and then a series of flashbacks of everyone's fondest memories.

    The whole thing was fast, and seemed a very forced attempt to end so many themes and plots that it really didn’t give me the same sense of finale that I had after viewing “All Good Things”. I agree that DS9’s average episodes were more exciting than TNG’s average episodes, and that DS9 had just as many ethical, political, and social messages as TNG. But as finales go, I think TNG outshines this one just a bit. But even if you’re not into the whole comparison thing, it’s just a weird way to end a spectacular saga.

    The flashback moments were touching, and Odo’s rejoining the Great Link was a nicely done scene. I didn’t like Odo and Quark’s parting; DS9 has done some awkward goodbyes (like Picard and O’Brien at the opener) and this one was no different.

    But overall I’d give part 1 a 9, and part 2 a 6.
  • From PaulBW on 2012-05-26 at 2:51am:
    Underwhelming as a follow up to the excellent part one. Gul Dukat's 15 minutes as a super-villian felt unnessary, especially for all the tedious build-up we had to endure to get to that point. Though I did get sentimental towards the end of the episode when the characters met their final conclusions in the series.

    After Quark says, "hasn't there been enough change around here already." I felt like it would of been a perfect moment for Morn to say a word or too. A simple "ya" would have been hilarious. It would play into the times-are-changin theme they got going on this second half.
  • From L on 2013-08-19 at 6:07am:
    Then I guess everything's wrapped up in a neat little package.

    Awesome battle scenes.

    I think what made this show great was the writing and development of the villains, which was made possible by doing the larger arcs, and also that they were able to make them complex and sympathetic with shades of grey well as all-out evil. The acting of the Cardassians, Vorta, Jem-Hadaar and the Ferengi eclipses everyone else's (all the 'nice' races) performance for some reason, or they're just more compelling to me.
    The exploration of darker and heavier themes was also to its merit.
    The development of the Ferenghi culture over TNG was very welcome and priceless.

    I wasn't particularly moved by the wrap-up however - I think the only flashback that touched me was that showing the relationship of Jake and Sisko, truly one of the greatest father/son relationships ever portrayed on television.

    I feel a bit let down by the fact that I didn't really care in the end about the fate of the characters - possibly it's the 'spiritual' ridiculousness of Sisko's fate that poured cold water on it for me, plus the farewell party in the Vegas holosuite seemed pointless and cheesy, as that whole Vic/smooth jazzclub sub-plot always did.
    The best flashback to me was the one showing a lanky Bashir in a lycra body-suit playing whatever that squash game was with O'Brien.

    This just did not have the same impact as TNG for me, that felt so much more of a family and had a really positive feeling. Perhaps it's the lack of optimism in this ending, as lots of heavy stuff has been going on - we've all lost our Star Trek innocence and future idealism now.

    My lack of emotional investment started half-way through the last season with my resistance to the Bajoran culture and religion and the blind faith being advocated, so I'm just glad to have got through it.

    I can see why it's praised. Definitely some fantastic moments.
    Now onto Voyager.
  • From Rob UK on 2013-12-01 at 1:23pm:
    I will write something more on this episode at some point as in regards to the ending of a Star Trek season i think it is the best, sidetracked.

    My reason for writing now is Major Kira who seems to have turned into first a Sith lord (see previous episode as she lurks all cloaked up conducting the dissent on Kardasia) an then in this episode she goes all Princess Leah invading Jabba's Palace with the captured Chewbacca and the thermal detonator as she is dressed as the Breen to save Garrick and co, if she had just said "Someone who loves you" in response to someone asking "Who are you?" from under the Breen helmet we were complete in the homage.

    I know Star Wars and Star Trek comparatives i have probably broken all the rules of fandom, anyone sitting there melting at their computer at my foibles please forgive, count to ten and breath deep, no offense was ever intended as i am a fan of it all
  • From Alex on 2014-05-19 at 7:08pm:
    I`ll be honest,i personally thought DS9 was the most overrated steaming heap of manure ever to masquerade as anything to be connected with star trek.The star trek ethos is meant to be to boldly go and explore,not to bore everyone whitless about the inane goings on (and lets face it,for the first 2 series the SCI-FI CONTENT was negligible)at a second rate Babylon 5 effort.The only thing that made it bearable was the introduction of Worf,the Defiant(something to get off that bloody station)and the Dominion story arc which at times was brilliant,especially the episode Rocks And Shoals.To finish this is not a series i will miss in anyway,good riddance
  • From mandeponium on 2014-08-02 at 8:39pm:
    This is the episode I've been waiting for since Episode 1 and the start of the Dominion War. It all finally culminates here with the fight that means everything but also changes everything.

    It's the last task to save the thing that you love the most. But in doing so, the fighting changes the thing and you can't go back to it. You can't go back to the way things were. You've saved it but it's different now than when you left it. Garak lost 800 million countrymen. He can never go back to the Cardassia he knew. Even if the thing hadn't changed, you still couldn't go back because now you're different. The struggle changed you. Sisko now lives with the prophets.

    It reminded me a lot of the end of Lord of the Rings. Maybe DS9 copied it or maybe they both copied the broader archetype: the struggle to save followed by loss.
    "We set out to save the Shire, Sam and it has been saved - but not for me," says Frodo as he makes way to the ships that will take him to the White Shores.
  • From RichD on 2016-09-29 at 5:26pm:
    A great finale for a great series. I recently re-watched the entire series on Netflix. DS9 gets my vote as the best ST series. TOS was the 1st so it must be respected. TNG had the master thespian. ENT and VOY had their moments, but DS9 was much more complex and diverse. It told so many different stories, and it told them well. I loved the series when I first watched it, and I love it even more now after watching it again. I'm almost a little misty that's over, ha!

    My top ten episodes:

    In the Pale Moonlight
    The Visitor
    The Die is Cast
    By Inferno's Light
    The Siege of AR-558
    In Purgatory's Shadow
    Duet
    The Way of the Warrior
    Trials and Tribble-ations
    A time to Stand

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