In the first episode of the third season of Deep Space Nine, WOW, EVERYTHING HURTS SO MUCH. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Star Trek.Â
WELL, SEASON THREE IS HERE, JESUS CHRIST.
Hopeless to Hopeful
What a bleak opening to this season, y’all. While this episode certainly has its emotional ups and down, the first few minutes prior to Sisko’s arrival is a stark moment. For the first time in this series, the threat of war â€“ or at least a battle that would mark the precursor to it â€“ felt VERY real. Not only that, but the show decides to definitively state that Deep Space Nine is utterly unprepared to defend itself. The station wasn’t designed to do that. Yet the crew has to figure out a way to do so or the wormhole AND Bajor will fall into Dominion control.
Thus, Sisko’s return from weeks of briefings on Earth is a sign of potential. It’s the first glimmer of hope versus the Jem’Hadar, though I’ll talk more about that in a bit. With him, he brings the USS Defiant, A PROTOTYPE WARSHIP. A Federation warship!!! Y’all, I love that the Borg is invoked in the introduction of this because it ties it to a plot that was as close as the Federation got to war on The Next Generation. But it also holds an emotional relevance for Sisko, doesn’t it? The Borg destroyed his life, and now, he’s got control of a ship that was made to (ideally) destroy the Borg. Sisko shares a fantastic scene with Jadzia regarding this very same dynamic, though he’s now determined to protect Deep Space Nine and Bajor. HE’S SO INTENSE AND PASSIONATE AND I LOVE IT SO MUCH.
Unfortunately, with this new development comes a plot that I’m surprised it took Deep Space Nine so long to address. That’s not a criticism, mind you. Once Odo confronted Sisko about his role in the station and during this conflict, I simply realized that Starfleet had taken awhile to finally deal with Odo being head of security. Frankly, it’s something they usually take care of a lot quicker. That’s why it stings so much when, during the most crucial period in Deep Space Nine history, Odo is sidelined because he can’t be “trusted” by Starfleet. His reaction here is not just justifiable, it makes a lot of sense! Why would he tolerate being demoted? Why now, of all times? He wouldn’t! And I think it’s important to acknowledge the emotional aspect of this part of his story because I think it plays into what he’ll do later in the episode. This is a deeply upsetting turn of events, and so, when he becomes obsessed with the Omarion Nebula, it complicates things.
Y’all. Y’ALL. I am still completely blown away by how this episode transformed before my eyes. Sure, there’s a very tense scene where Sisko tests out the Romulan cloaking device on the Defiant. It’s executed well, and I had no idea it was just a test of my spirit because HELL WAS ABOUT TO RAIN DOWN ON ME IN THE FORM OF THE JEM’HADAR. Look, it’s not that I misjudged or underestimated the Jem’Hadar. The season 2 finale clearly demonstrated how far they’d be willing to go, and I even suspected that eventually, the Jem’Hadar would figure out a way to get through the cloaking device. Why wouldn’t they? They’re part of a group that takes whatever technology they want from whomever they want. Doesn’t it make sense that at some point, they must have stolen some form of cloaking? Wouldn’t they have the tools at their disposal to crack through it? Let’s say that’s all speculation, then. I still don’t think it’s realistic to assume that the technique â€“ using the cloaking in conjunction with turning off all the power of the ship â€“ would work every single time.
What I didn’t expect was Sisko leaving O’Brien and Dax behind. I didn’t think it would happen in a million years, and the writers knew this. They knew that AND THEY DID IT ANYWAY AND THEN SISKO LOOKS MISERABLE BUT HE’S DOING IT ANYWAY BECAUSE HE’S PLACING THE MISSION AS A HIGHER PRIORITY OVER HIS FRIENDS AND EVERYTHING HURTS FOREVER AND EVER. Yet as horrifying as the moment is, it’s not entirely out of character for Sisko, is it? Hasn’t he shown us numerous times that he was willing to do what was necessary to get the job done, even if it meant walking a very thin line between what was acceptable or ethical?
Christ, how are the rest of the crew going to deal with this decision? Well, we don’t know because THEN THE SHOW GIVES US THE MOST VIOLENT SCENE IN THE HISTORY OF DEEP SPACE NINE AND THE JEM’HADAR FUCK UP THE DEFIANT AND THEY BOARD IT AND THEY’RE SHOOTING EVERYONE AND THE CAMERA WON’T STOP SHAKING AND LOOK. Look. This sequence is so utterly unlike the rest of this episode and most action scenes in Star Trek. It’s prolonged, and the camera work is so relentlessly intense. Is this show letting me forget that the Jem’Hadar are one of the most ruthless antagonists we’ve ever had? Not for a second.
Which brings us to Odo. In the midst of this attack, Odo shocks me, too. After his resignation from Deep Space Nine (!!!! HOW DID THAT HAPPEN IN THIS SAME EPISODE !!!!), I wondered if he was upset onboard the Defiant because of his worry that he wasn’t useful anymore. But that scene of his with Kira in his quarters was so much more powerful because we had never seen him so upset. Whatever was pulling him towards the Omarion Nebula was strong enough to break through his usual steadfast stoicism or his anger, and it brought him straight to distress.
Like the scene where Sisko made the decision to leave O’Brien and Dax behind, I was equally blown away by Odo’s decision to take Kira and LEAVE EVERYONE BEHIND ON THE DEFIANT. Like, that’s horrifying all on its own, y’all. He abandoned all those people instead of helping them. But am I reading too much into his desire to take Kira with him? I noticed that moment last season that seemed to hint towards feelings he might have for her. But I don’t think I’m imagining this here because he chose her. Over everyone else! WHY HER?
Did Odo want her by his side when he DISCOVERED WHERE HE CAME FROM? EVERYONE, I CANNOT BELIEVE HOW MANY PREDICTIONS OF MINE CAME TRUE IN THE FIRST FUCKING EPISODE OF THIS SHOW. Oh my god, HE FOUND OTHER SHAPESHIFTERS!!! Oh my god hasldkfj; a;lads fa;erypoiwe zmncvpoiw I NEED THE NEXT EPISODE RIGHT NOW.
The video for “The Search, Part I” can be downloaded here for $0.99.
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