Commander Benjamin Sisko, whose life has changed after his wife was killed in the battle with the Borg at Wolf 359, is to take command of the space station Deep Space Nine near Bajor. The station was built by the Cardassians, but recently taken over by the Bajorans after a very oppressive occupation of their planet was ended. Sisko has one hell of a task before him. The station is in ruins after the Cardassians stripped it, merchants are preparing to leave and its Bajoran commander major Kira Nerys seems to dislike the Federation. When Sisko gets to talk with Kai Opaka, the Bajoran religious leader, she tells him he is the long awaited emissary and shows him a 'Tear of the Prophet', a mysterious looking orb that enables him to relive memories. Kai Opaka tells the other orbs were stolen by the Cardassians looking for the Celestial Temple. She urges the DS9 commander to find it before they do. After science officer Jadzia Dax, a Trill, thinks she has found the possible location, she and... Written by
Arnoud Tiele (email@example.com)
The mural draped in Quark's Bar is of Gul Dukat's Tholian enemy during the Cardassian occupation. See more »
During the attack, a supposedly solid fallen girder or column on the Promenade is seen to bend like foam when someone lands on it. See more »
Locutus of Borg:
Resistance is futile. You will disarm your weapons and escort us to sector 0-0-1. If you attempt to intervene, we will destroy you.
Red alert. Load all torpedo bays, ready phasers.
See more »
My enjoyment and appreciation of Star Trek has the tendency to wax and wane. While I enjoyed most of the movies and am a huge fan of TNG, the rest is more or less up for grabs. I have only seen two season's worth of the most recent incarnation, Enterprise, and I find it a very underrated series, thanks in particular to the knockout season 3 Xindi story arc. Voyager did little for me, with its subpar cast and bland storytelling hindering its otherwise enticing premise. But it's Deep Space Nine that baffles me the most.
For the past several weeks, I've been trying to catch up on DS9 so that I could follow the Dominion War arc, and I started from season 3's The Die is Cast, which proved to be a pretty exciting episode so I decided to give the series a shot. And from there on out, it's been up and down for me. I wasn't able to catch all the episodes, but I tried my best to see those that pushed the Dominion story forward. The end result was an often frustrating mix of engrossing episodes (The Way of the Warrior, Broken Link, Apocalypse Rising, Tears of the Prophets, The Siege of AR-558) mixed with plenty that I found rather overrated (In the Pale Moonlight, season 6's Dominion-occupied DS9 arc).
But I'm pretty glad to see that the series on ended on a high note thanks to the Final Chapter arc, which concluded with the terrific two-hour What You Leave Behind, which proved to be one of the Star Trek franchise's most exciting and moving episodes (other solid episodes in this arc include The Changing Face of Evil, When it Rains, Tackling the Wind, and The Dogs of War). Consequently, I was pretty curious to revisit the first episode and see how it all began, and while watching Emissary worked as a curiosity for a while, it wasn't long before boredom set in.
Not that Emissary doesn't get off to a decent start. The opening sequence depicting the Battle of Wolf 359 is a fast-paced way to get the series going, even if the battle itself appears way too small in scale. The actual introduction of the station and its crew is handled fairly well, and it was nice to compare and see how the characters progressed over the years, the most obvious instances being Major Kira (Nana Visitor) and the Ferengi Nog. Kira is actually one of my favorite characters on the show, so it's particularly interesting to see the hostility she displays towards the Federation in this episode, especially compared to how she handles being in charge of the station by the final episode.
Most of this premiere suffers because it has to establish a none-too-exciting set-up. In this case, it's watching Sisko deal with the prophets while coming to terms with his own emotional pain. Undoubtedly, it's the emissary/prophets storyline that I like least about DS9 (well, maybe it's a bit better than those annoying Ferengi episodes), as I don't think the series ever did a particularly good job of making the prophets or their motives intriguing. Their presence has also been ripe for some deus ex machina moments (Sacrifice of Angels comes to mind).
It doesn't help that some the acting comes across rather amateurish, particularly Terry Farrell as Jadzia Dax and the actress that plays Sisko's wife. Even the typically solid Avery Brooks slips in quality on occasion here. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the best performance is delivered by Patrick Stewart, who makes an enjoyable cameo appearance as everyone's favorite French British starship captain. So maybe this wasn't such a good start, but it's nice to know the series would improve and I am looking forward to seeing how the Dominion are introduced.
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