Synopsis: Starfleet has developed a plan to expose Chancellor Gowron as a changeling. For this Sisko has to borrow Dukat’s Bird of Prey and fly deep into the klingon territory. There O’Brien, Odo and he poses as Klingons – or at least Worf tries to teach them how to do that. And of course it’s not that easy for a random klingon warrior to get close to his ruler.
My Opinion: It was great to see Brooks, Auberjonois and Meaney in klingon masks and costume, especially Brooks. And it was funny to see how they tred to behave like Klingons. But I have to admit I think it was a dangerous choice to take Odo, given his current state of mind. Even if it wasn’t voiced in the episode the reason was obviously to challenge Odo, to show him that he can do his job even as a “solid” but he could as well blown it. But in the end it worked out ok and I liked the twist that it wasn’t Gowron at all.
Synopsis: Sisko leads an expidition to a planet in the GQ where they want to determine whether it’s suitable for a mining operation. But then a Jem’Hadar warship crashes on that planet – there are no survivors. But while they are inspecting the wreckage yet another Dominion ship arrives and in the following fight Sisko’s people get trapped in the wreck. Surprisingly the Vorta offers safe conduct if they’d leave the ship. But now Sisko has become curious about what’s so important about a crashed ship (and of course he doesn’t trust her to keep her word).
My Opinion: OK, I was tired, but I dozed off during the episode, what does that tell you?
Looking for par’Mach in All the Wrong Places
Synopsis: Grillka, Quark’s klingon ex-wife, comes to the station because the war had some heavy impacts on her financial situation. And while Quark is happy to see her again, he’s not the only one who finds her fascinating. Worf tries to impress her but doesn’t succeed due to his dishonoured status within the empire. In the end he agrees to help Quark courting her.
My Opinion: The beginning of a beautiful romance. No, not Quark and Grillka, but Dax and Worf. “par’Mach” is klingon for “love”, just a lot tougher than its human counterpart. It was great to see Quark courting Grillka and fighting his challenger while Worf and Dax were secretly helping him to survive. And of course the best part was where the two pairs came into the infirmary at the end of the episode. 😀
Nor the Battle to the Strong
Synopsis: Bashir and Jake (who’s writing an article about Bashir) return from a medical conference when they receive an emergency call. They change course and land on a planet where a Federation force tries to hold the line against klingon ground troops. And while Dr. Bashir works in the clinic Jakes tries to help and not to stand in someone’s way. But he also has to learn about the horrors of war.
My Opinion: I thought this was a really good episode. Once again DS9 has shown Humans much more human and not as perfect as they had been portrayed in TNG. I liked the idea of hearing Jakes notes as voiceover, to hear what he was feeling right now when he meet all these different kind of people. And that he didn’t consider himself a hero just because he saved the day by accident even though everyone else does – that was great.
Synopsis: When Keiko O’Brien returns from an expedition to the Fire Caves on Bajor she’s changed. She claims that she’s possessed by a Pah-wraith and it will kill her if O’Brien doesn’t do what she says. In the next days O’Brien is forced to modify the quipment of the station but he has no idea to what end, he just knows it’s harmless for biological lifeforms. But luckily there is someone who discovers the plan of the Pah-wraith.
My Opinion: I liked this episode because it’s one of the rare episodes where Rom has a major role and where he could show that he isn’t dumb at all and that he’s loyal if asked to. And he subsequently earned his promotion to the day shift. 🙂
Trials and Tribble-ations
Synopsis: Lucsly and Dulmer from Temporal Investigations arrive on DS9 to investigate a time travel that the Defiant and its crew has done. Caused by the Orb of Time the Defiant was moved back in time to the year 2268 and they appear directly in front of the space station K-7 and the Enterprise – NCC-1701, Kirk’s Enterprise. As it turns out they had an old enemy of Kirk’s on board and he tries to rewrite history. Sisko and his crew have to find him and to prevent any change in the timeline.
My Opinion: This was Star Trek‘s 30th anniversary episode and it was great. They used the original footage of the original series and inserted the DS9 characters digitally into it.
(Sisko & Dax)
(O’Brien & Bashir)
And they had a lot of fun with it, from the agents, which are anagrams of Mulder and Scully, to the classical uniform and equipment. And of course the question why the Klingons looked different back then and of course the Tribbles. 😀
Let He Who Is Without Sin…
Synopsis: Jadzia and Worf are going on vacation, to Risa, THE vacation planet within the Federation. As it so happens they are accompanied by Julian and Leeta – and Quark. Only Worf doesn’t seem to be able to relax – but despite being fearsome warriors, Klingons are also well known for their celebrations where a lot of Blood Wine is consumed. Soon after their arrival Worf joins a radical group of New Essentialists who are convinced that the Federation and its people have become to soft.
My Opinion: This was an OK episode but if I had to argue with Worf, I’d say that most people like peace and quit but the Federation has proven more than once that it’s willing to defend their way of living with the force of arms and that the people stand up for what they believe in. But I liked the explanation of why Worf is mostly so self-possessed, so rigid with himself. It must be a traumatizing event to accidentally kill someone because you hadn’t control over your klingon nature.
Synopsis: The runabout arrives on the station on auto-pilot. The four occupants – Sisko, Odo, Garak and Dax – are in some kind of coma. When they wake up they are on DS9, but it’s Terok Nor and it’s nine years ago. And nobody recognizes them for who they are but they seem to be bajoran workers. Odo’s predecessor is in charge of security but something doesn’t add up – the unfolding events had taken place only seven years ago when Odo was already in charge.
My Opinion: I liked this episode because it became very quickly evident that the entire time shift was somehow connected to Odo but it wasn’t clear why and how and they managed to lay down false trails like the assumption that the Founders could have somehow created this. I also liked the conversation between Kira and Odo at the end, it reminded me of another flashback episode (Necessary Evil) only this time Kira and Odo had switched roles.
Synopsis: Odo is ordered to bring Quark before a Federation grand jury and he does this with joy. But their travel doesn’t go as expected, they crash on a planet that is barely capable of supporting life and they have to find a way to send a distress signal. Meanwhile Jake moves into his own quarters and Nog, who’s in his sophomore year at Starfleet Academy, moves in with him during his practical training aboard the station.
My Opinion: This was a great Odo/Quark episode. They were bickering like an old couple and they basically are. 😉 I liked it how they voiced their anger and “hatred” and yet neither one gave up on the other. Episode like this one convinced me that it was a good idea to make Odo solid (at least for a while).
But I also liked the Jake/Nog part. Nog has definitely changed due to his training and they have grown apart, but they are still very good friends.
Synopsis: Sisko scans a picture of an ancient – an lost – city on Bajor into the holographic computer when he’s hit by an electrical discharge. When he awakes he starts to have visions that help him to find that city. But that visions also tell him that he mustn’t allow Bajor to join the Federation or it will be Bajor’s undoing.
My Opinion: This was a typical “Sisko as religious figure” episode and I told you I feel uneasy about them. Even Q, surely a god-like figure, was never treated with that much reverence in the Star Trek universe.
The Darkness and the Light
Synopsis: Kira’s past is catching up with her. Someone is killing the members of the Shakaar resistance cell one by one and he seems to have special plans for Kira. While Odo tries to find whoever is behind this, Kira tries to keep her friends alive albeit with little success.
My Opinion: The world is grey, not black and white. This episode proved that point very well. And I really liked that Kira didn’t start to apologize for what she did because I never believed she did regret it. He was the enemy and she fought against the enemy with all her might. There’s no such thing as a clean war and she is no hypocrite claiming there was.
Synopsis: Quark sells Odo an infant shapeshifter who has been badly injured by radiation poisoning. Dr. Bashir can treat him and now Odo tries to teach the glass of jelly how to become a real shapeshifter and how to communicate with its environment. But it’s only when Dr. Mora Pol helps him that they have some success.
My Opinion: This episode is great for two reasons. The first one is that a lot of scenes of this episode were about Rene Auberjonois talking to goo in variably-shaped glass bowls. And I loved watching him at that. I also liked how he argued with Mora and that they finally ended their quarrel about how Mora treated Odo when Odo was the goo in the bowl.
The second reason is that Odo can finally shapeshift again. It was a great gift from the dying infant and I loved the scene where he transformed into that hawk and flew around the promenade.
For the Uniform
Synopsis: Sisko has been on the hunt for Eddington for over eight months now and he has always escaped. Now Starfleet is assigning another starship to the case. But then Eddington and the Maquis start to poison the atmosphere of cardassian-inhabited planets within the demilitarized zone and he disables the other ship and that brings Sisko back on the playing field.
My Opinion: This episode has been widely discussed due to Sisko’s decision to use the same methods as Eddington did (he poisened a Maquis planet). I am not really comfortable with his choice but on the other hand he knew exactly that he would get Eddington and the bio weapons this way and it was predictable for him that chances of casualties were slim.
Sadly in a few episodes nothing of this will have any meaning anymore, when the Dominion crushes the Maquis and the great war starts.
In Purgatory’s Shadow
Synopsis: Garak receives a signal from the missing Enabran Tain (former head of the Obsidian Order and missing since he tried to wipe out the Founders) and Sisko sends him and Worf to investigate the source of the signal. But in their attempt to avoid any contact with the Dominion they run directly into a fleet hidden in a nebula near the wormhole. They can warn the station but become prisoners.
My Opinion: If I had to name an episode where the Dominion War starts, I’d name this two-parter. I really liked the scenes between Worf and Garak in the shuttle and I liked to see Martok again who will play a much larger role from now on.
By Inferno’s Light
Synopsis: In the internment camp they find Tain and General Martok – and Dr. Bashir. Martok has been here for over two years, Bashir for a month. And the Bashir on the station is a changeling who sabotages any attempt to prevent the Dominion fleet from coming through the wormhole. But the fleet doesn’t attack, it takes course to Cardassia, the newest member in the Dominion. And Bashir, Worf, Garak and Martok try to escape their prison.
My Opinion: When I saw that episode for the first time, it came as a surprise to me that Dukat had switched sides again. But then again, it has been in his character since the first episode. Always trying to be on the winning side. I also liked that the Khitomer Accords have been revived – the Klingons and the Federation are allies again. And even the Romulans helped defend the station.
To quote Gandalf: “The board is set. The pieces are moving. We come to it at last, the great battle of our time.”
Doctor Bashir, I Presume
Synopsis: The inventor of the Emergency Medical Hologram “EMH” (the most famous instance of that program is running on the USS Voyager in the Delta Quadrant) Dr. Zimmerman comes to DS9. He wants to create a longterm version of that hologram and Dr. Bashir was selected to be the human template. But when Dr. Zimmerman interviews the people in Bashirs life it comes out that Bashir has been genetically enhanced by his parents and that is forbidden under Federation law since the days of Khan Noonien Singh.
My Opinion: Although I doubt that they had the idea of Bashir being genetically enhanced before they wrote this script, it doesn’t contradict what we know about Bashir. Later he even explains that he choose to become only Salutatorian in his class instead of Valedictorian. He wanted to be good but not that good to get too much attention. But except for a few selected episodes his changed history has basically no impact on his further character developement.
But the episode itself was good, I liked Zimmerman’s appearance and the whole interview and creating the LMH part. I also liked the reference to Khan and the Eugenics Wars.
A Simple Investigation
Synopsis: A woman tried to contact a man on the station to purchase something from him, but he gets killed before they can meet. When she tries to steal it, Odo catches her and starts an investigation. The woman is wanted by the Orion Syndicate, the most powerful criminal organization in the quadrant, and Odo tries to protect her and to help her. But he also falls in love with her.
My Opinion: Odo’s love life. Not interested in I am.
Business as Usual
Synopsis: Since his business license has been revoked, Quark is almost broke and now another deal has gone down. His knight in shining armor is his cousin Gaila (who once tried to kill Quark), but the business he’s in is illegal: He’s a weapons dealer and he wants Quark to join him. At first that seems like a good idea, but then he loses his Federation friends on the station and later he might lose his life.
My Opinion: Quark has always been a crook and he probably will always be one. He has purchased and sold illegal goods all his life. But it’s good to see that even he has a moral line where he says “till here and no further”. And I liked it how he played the leaders of this bloody struggle against each other.
Somehow I feel the urge to watch Lord of War again.
Ties of Blood and Water
Synopsis: Once, Kira was surgically altered to look like a Cardassian. She was supposedly the daughter of a high ranking cardassian officer in the Central Command. Now this man, her “father”, comes to the station. He’s dying and he’s alone and he wants her to know all his secrets to use it as leverage – a cardassian tradition when one is dying. But seeing him die reminds Kira of the death of her own father back in the days of the occupation.
My Opinion: Five years ago it was unimagenable that Kira would care so deeply for a Cardassian. I liked it how they switched between the current timeline and here memories of the death of her father and I liked it that she buried Ghemor beside her real father. I know exactly how she must have felt. One year ago my grandfather died and I often sat beside him in the hospital and saw the diminishing sparkle of light in his eyes. 🙁
Ferengi Love Songs
Synopsis: Quark is depressed and Rom wants to marry Leeta, one of the bajoran Dabo-Girls in Quark’s bar. But when Quark returns home to Ferenginar, to visit his mother, he learns the she and the Grand Nagus Zek are a couple. Brunt (FCA) wants to break them up and he needs Quarks help. Meanwhile Leeta and Rom break up because she doesn’t want to sign a standard Ferengi marriage contract (which of course leaves her with no rights and no money during and after the marriage).
My Opinion: This was a fun episode. It’s funny how Quark’s family breaks with all traditions: Ishka wears clothes, does business and even acts as first financial advisor to the Grand Nagus (secretly of course) and Rom gives all his savings (ok, it wasn’t that much) away because he loves Leeta. And Quark stands in the middle of it and just wants to be a normal Ferengi – but at least he’s got his business license back. 🙂
Soldiers of the Empire
Synopsis: Martok takes command of the IKS Rotarran, a Bird of Prey whose crew has not achieved a victory in months. Worf joins the crew as first officer for this mission, while Dax takes the post of science officer. But Martok has changed in the two years of his imprisonment, he is cautious and unwilling to take any risk – but that’s unworthy of a Klingon. Worf has to do something or the morale will break down completely.
My Opinion: I love the Klingons, especially in DS9. And this was a great episode in my opinion. How Martok wavered and how Worf helped him and risked his own life – I loved that part. I especially liked that this was an all-klingon episode – except for Dax, but Dax is highly honoured in the Klingon Empire.
And for what do we need Esperanto, when we have Klingon? It sounds far better. 😀
Children of Time
Synopsis: After passing a giant energy field surrounding an entire planet the crew of the Defiant finds a colony of 8000 people – their descendants. The Defiant tried to escape the barrier and travelled 200 years back in time and crashed. The survivors built the colony and lived their lifes there. Only the Dax symbiont and Odo are still around from the original crew. The question is: Can the crew escape this time but what happens then to the colonists?
My Opinion: The episode was good – until the end, I hated the end. To see all these different people wiped out from existance because one man wanted to save his secret love and Odo of all people, the man who despises injustice above all else. It just didn’t fit.
Blaze of Glory
Synopsis: The Maquis has been destroyed, most of its members were killed by Dominion forces. But they have one last ace in the sleeve. They have launched cloaked missiles to Cardassia. These missiles are loaded with bioloical and chemical weapons and will cause the death of millions and they will cause a retaliation strike against the Federation. Sisko needs Eddington to stop these missiles.
My Opinion: This was a good closure to the Eddington storyline. He finally got what he wanted, to die in an heroic act, “for the cause”. I thought that it was a good idea that he didn’t simply went to prison and was forgotten. But I also liked the part where Nog tried to get respected by the Klingons, Martok in particular.
Synopsis: The station needs to be repaired but it’s unlikely that they will get spare parts from the Cardassians. Chief O’Brien leads a salvage team to the abandoned cardassian station Empok Nor which is of identical design as DS9. They take Garak with them because it’s likely to be booby-trapped. But there are unexpected guards on the station…
My Opinion: Even though there is no up and down in the universe drifting ships and abandoned stations are always portrayed as if they had keeled over. 😉 The episode was really good, it was dark, the enemies were dangerous and we’ve seen what Garak is capable of. We’ve seen him before doing terrible things but these happened in the “comfy” surroundings of an interrogation cell. This was a combat situation but I guess when one was in the Obsidian Order one needs such skills to survive.
In the Cards
Synopsis: The cargo of a wrecked ship is auctioned at Quark’s and Jake discovers a mid-20th-century Willie Mays baseball card and tries to bid for it. But he loses against a very weird guy. Jake and Nog try to negotiate for the card and have to acquire some items in exchange for the card. And for that they have to deal with both Kai Winn and Weyoun.
My Opinion: This episode was virtually the calm before the storm and they wrote it as such. And the episode reminded me of former days when Nog and Jake turned a lot of useless Yamok sauce into 5 bars of gold-pressed Latinum back in the first season (Progress). I also liked how Weyoun was portrayed. From now on they will give the character more depth which he will need as a major player in this war.
Call to Arms
Synopsis: For weeks the Dominion has send ships and troops through the wormhole to Cardassia. The Federation can’t allow this anymore or the war is lost before it even begins. They decide to mine the wormhole and stop all traffic through it. But the Dominion won’t allow this and as soon as they learn of the mining process they dispatch a fleet to take DS9.
My Opinion: While the mines are a bit of an “eierlegende Wollmilchsau” (a self-sustaining, self-replicating & cloaked minefield) I liked the decisions of this episode, such as retreating from DS9 to bring another perspective to the show or the deciscion to let Bajor remaining neutral or Jake staying behind. It will make for an interesting start of the sixth season.
The Season – My Opinion: This was a good season with a lot of interesting episodes of all kinds. Along with the fourth and sixth season these are my favourite years of DS9. This show took a long time to get into motion, I’d say way more time that any show would get if it were produced in this decade. But these three years (and parts of the seventh and third season) make totally up for it, especially the episodes that will come now.