“The Search, Part I”
Written by Ira Steven Behr & Robert Hewitt Wolfe and Ronald D. Moore
Directed by Kim Friedman
Season 3, Episode 1
Production episode 40512-447
Original air date: September 26, 1994
Station log: We get a summary of the events of “The Jem’Hadar,” then cut to a meeting in Ops run by Kira, with Dax, Odo, Bashir, and O’Brien. They’ve run seven simulations, and they all come out the same: the Jem’Hadar totally kicks their asses. Dax proposes two other alternatives: abandon the station and make a stand on Bajor or collapse the wormhole entrance on this side.
Before the discussion can continue, a ship decloaks: it’s a new class of Starfleet starship, the Defiant. Sisko brought the ship back from Earth: it’s a prototype for a fleet of warships that Starfleet experimented with to fight the Borg. They abandoned the class because it’s overpowered and overgunned. O’Brien’s job is to fix that problem, while Sisko’s mission is to take the ship into the Gamma Quadrant and find the Founders of the Dominion to try to negotiate with them. The reason for taking the Defiant is to show that they’ll defend themselves if necessary.