Soldiers of the Empire, Children of Time, Blaze of Glory, Empok Nor

SOLDIERS OF THE EMPIRE

Worf accompanies Martok on his first command since being released from prison.

It’s interesting that if I had to recommend Star Trek episodes to people who haven’t watched the series before I would go with the ones that focus on Klingons. Aside from being great villains (once upon a time) their culture is surprisingly relateable – it taps into a both primal and primary part of our psyches. This episode would be a top choice for me to show people of any age. It’s a self contained story that still holds interest for people who have followed DS9 regularly. Martok’s self-doubt, something anyone can relate to, is all the more agonizing for a Klingon warrior. The contrast between how his self-doubt manifests in depression while in his crew it manifests in violence, anger and in insubordination – all of which make for some pretty decent drama for the audience.

This is yet another great example of how well DS9 has treated Worf as a character. Worf carefully directs this story with both his action and his lack of action. This episode manages to take itself seriously while also having a traditional happy ending. Many writers in a lot of different formats don’t know how to do that.

CHILDREN OF TIME

The Defiant crew meet their own descendants.

I love this episode. I absolutely love it. It’s a great, self-contained sci-fi story that’s full of twists. As a DS9 fan, it’s also great because we get a better understanding of all the characters through this story…

O’Brien’s shows how decicated he is to his family without ever saying anything about them. The mere fact he spent ten years NOT moving on before taking a new wife clearly shows us that. Although, it made me wonder: the girl O’Brien winds up with must not have been the “choicest cut” of the women in the crew.

Captain Sisko is well handled in an even-handed and relateable way as he weighs the options for him and his crew.

The conflict between Dax’s desire to succeed and the pressure she puts on herself.

Worf doesn’t do a lot but I enjoyed the moment where he makes the Klingons help the farmers battle against time.

I really like how Odo and Kira’s relationship develops, stalls and collapses here without being frustratingly immobile. And once again DS9 let’s the stories it tells have real consequences as we will no doubt see between Odo and Kira.

BLAZE OF GLORY

Sisko turns to Eddington to stop an attack by the Maquis’

Not a lot of new ground in this episode, it could actually have been a second half of the last episode with Eddington. The time he spent in prison since then isn’t essential to the story; in fact, it actually causes the story to make less sense since Eddington apparently got married shortly before being captured.

Anyway, it’s a fun episode to watch. Eddington’s end was a little corny and considering he was only reunited with his wife two minutes earlier it’s hard to believe she left him behind. So… solid C+.

EMPOK NOR

O’Brien, Nog, Garak and some cannon fodder go to an abandoned space station looking for parts.

This is a brilliant way to use the existing DS9 sets for an exciting episode that appears to take place elsewhere else. This feels like a totally different place from DS9. The episode isn’t anything that will make me spend a lot of time reflecting upon the meaning of life, however, it does have some solid twists. This one’s never dervative and feels quite fresh.

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