Feb 7 2014 4:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Indiscretion”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion“Indiscretion”
Written by Toni Marberry & Jack Treviño and Nicholas Corea
Directed by LeVar Burton
Season 4, Episode 4
Production episode 40514-477
Original air date: October 23, 1995
Stardate: unknown

Station log: Kira gets a message from Razka, an old friend from the resistance, who claims to have a lead on the Ravinok: a piece of the ship’s forward sensor array. The Ravinok is a Cardassian prison ship that went missing six years earlier. Among the people on board: Lorit Akrem, the person who recruited Kira into the Shakaar resistance cell.

Razka is hiding in the Badlands—in trouble with the Tholians again, Kira guesses, though Razka neither confirms nor denies—so Kira has to go to him. Her departure is delayed, however, as the Cardassians want to send a representative to accompany her. Kira isn’t thrilled about it, but in the spirit of cooperation between Bajor and the new Cardassian civilian government, she agrees.

Yates informs Sisko that she’s applied for a job with the Bajoran Ministry of Commerce to captain one of their freighters—which would keep her in the sector somewhat permanently. Sisko is a bit gobsmacked, as this would be a bigger step forward in their relationship than he was expecting.

The Cardassian representative shows up: it’s Dukat. Kira is even less thrilled, but the two of them hie off in a runabout. Dukat is on this mission because the Ravinok was under his authority as prefect of Bajor—those were his troops on board. Dukat and Kira have a tense conversation on the subject of the occupation before Kira gets fed up and announces that she wants to spend the rest of the transit time in quiet meditation, mostly by way of getting Dukat to shut the hell up.

Over dinner, Yates enthuses over the job, which the Bajoran ministry offered her before the interview was over. Sisko, however, isn’t enthusing at all, which concerns Yates to the point where she thinks may be shouldn’t accept the job, and then she walks out on dinner. (Given how good a cook Sisko is, that’s a major statement of how pissed she is.)

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

In the Badlands, Razka brings the sensor array on board. He bought it from a Ferengi scrap metal merchant. Dukat confirms that the piece is from the Ravinok. (He and Razka also establish their mutually assured destruction: the Maquis have a price on Dukat’s head, and Razka has twelve outstanding warrants on Cardassia.)

The Ferengi Razka got it from salvaged it in orbit of Dozaria. Kira and Dukat are both surprised, as Dozaria is way off course from the Ravinok’s flight plan. Dukat reads ionic interference in the atmosphere, which interferes with sensors and transporters. Kira lands the runabout near a magneton signature Kira scanned, and they find the wreckage of the Ravinok. The hulk is covered in phaser hits. They also find twelve graves; there were fifty people on board, so they need to find out what happened to the other thirty-eight. But first, they have to identify the twelve corpses. Dukat takes care of that while Kira works on the ship.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

In Quark’s, Sisko discusses his fight with Yates with Dax and Bashir, who both agree he royally screwed the pooch and needs to fix this.

While Dukat’s excuse for being the one to dig up the bodies alone is Cardassian funerary customs, the truth is, he’s looking for a Bajoran: a woman named Tora Naprem, who was Dukat’s mistress. Dukat insists it was more than that, of course—he even gave her a Bajoran pledge bracelet.

Kira, meanwhile, got from the Ravinok computer that the ship was attacked by two unidentified warships. She also finds traces of an isotope that resistance fighters were implanted with that would allow them to be tracked if they were captured.

The pair follow the trail until it gets dark, and they make camp—during which Dukat sits on a sharp spindle. The act of getting it out and Dukat applying a dermal regenerator to his own ass results in Kira collapsing in a fit of giggles—soon followed by Dukat doing likewise.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

The conversation gets serious again when Kira asks who Tora Ziyal is. It’s a name she found on the manifest, obviously someone related to Dukat’s mistress. Both Naprem and Ziyal were civilian passengers, neither crew nor prisoners. Dukat admits that Ziyal is his daughter—and also that if she did survive, he has to kill her. Kira is very much not on board with this plan, especially since Dukat put them on the Ravinok in the first place to send them away to Lissepia to live out their lives in peace once he realized the occupation was coming to an end, and he’d no longer be able to protect them. But he can’t let the truth come out about his affair or it will ruin his reputation and hurt his wife and seven legitimate children—not to mention his precarious new career as a legate in the brand-new-and-very-unstable civilian government.

Over dinner Jake tells Sisko that he’s worrying over nothing, that he should let Yates do what she wants to do, and if it doesn’t work out, it doesn’t work out. Sisko is a bit taken aback by Jake’s detailed analysis (apparently arrived at with Nog’s help).

Kira and Dukat find the survivors engaged as slave labor in a dilithium mining operation run by the Breen. Ziyal is among them, dispensing food to Bajorans and Cardassians alike. They concoct a rescue plan, Kira making it abundantly clear that if Dukat even tries to hurt Ziyal, she’ll kill him.

They take out two guards and put on their suits as disguises. They learn from a Bajoran prisoner that Lorit is dead and that there are only thirty-two survivors left. (The prisoner, meanwhile, is stunned to learn that the occupation is over and there’s a peace treaty between Bajor and Cardassia.)

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

During a firefight, Dukat sneaks off to find Ziyal. Kira catches up just as Dukat points his rifle at her. Ziyal says that the Cardassian prisoners insisted that this day would come, that Dukat would kill her if he found her, but the only thing that kept her going was the thought of his rescuing her. Dukat is unable to pull the trigger, and finally pulls her into an embrace.

Sisko goes to a cargo bay to apologize to Yates, who says that she already took the job on Bajor because she’s not about to pass up an opportunity because Sisko got cold feet. He promises to help her pick out quarters on the station when she gets back.

Before departing DS9 for Cardassia with Ziyal, Dukat says goodbye to Kira. He doesn’t know what will happen to him, but Ziyal deserves a home after six years in a Breen mine.

Can’t we just reverse the polarity? Bajoran resistance fighters were implanted with subcutaneous thingies that they could activate when captured that would leave a bread-crumb-like trail of isotopes that would enable them to be rescued. Dukat seems surprised by this, which means the Cardassians never figured it out.

The Sisko is of Bajor: Sisko makes a pig’s ear out of Yates taking a job in the Bajoran sector that will bring them literally closer together, finally admitting—after being badgered on the subject by Bashir, Quark, Jake, and especially Dax—that he’s scared of getting involved with someone again, especially since his wife died because of his job.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

Don’t ask my opinion next time: Kira manages her usual balance of professionalism and passion, saying right off to Dukat that the mission is personal—to find Lorit—but she also leads the mission with consummate skill and brilliance. And she also sees through Dukat: she knows that if he really wanted to kill Ziyal, he would never have told Kira of that intention.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

The slug in your belly: Dax gleefully pushes Sisko toward having to commit to a serious relationship with Yates, which is more than Sisko is willing to do, at least at first.

Preservation of matter and energy is for wimps: As soon as Kira mentions the Ravinok Odo does his trademark eye-roll—but he also knows that Kira won’t rest until she finds out what happened to the ship, no matter what Odo may think on the subject, so he holds his counsel and instead wishes her good luck.

Rules of Acquisition: When trying to dispense advice to Sisko on his relationship with Yates, Quark asks, “Who knows more about women than me?” to which Bashir magnificently replies: “Everyone.”

For Cardassia! Dukat has been made a legate in the new Cardassian civilian government. He also says that his new position has gained him a lot of enemies.

No sex, please, we’re Starfleet: The Sisko-Yates relationship hits a roadblock when Sisko’s response to Yates’s job offer is, “It’s a big step,” delivered quite lamely. When discussing it, Dax and Bashir take some solace from the fact that at least he didn’t say “It’s a very big step,” which would’ve been disastrous.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

Keep your ears open: “You’ve been talking to Jake.”

“How did you know?”

“Oh, he’s a smart boy. Must take after his mother.”

Yates making Sisko’s life hell while he tries to apologize for being a twit.

Welcome aboard: Marc Alaimo is back as Dukat and Penny Johnson is back as Yates. Roy Brocksmith—last seen as Kolrami in TNG’s “Peak Performance”—plays Razka.

Cyia Batten is the first of two actors to play Ziyal in this season; she’ll return to the role in “Return to Grace” before being replaced by Tracy Middendorf in “For the Cause.” Next season, they’ll be replaced by Melanie Smith, who will continue to recur in the role for seasons five and six. Batten, a member of the Pussycat Dolls, will also appear in Voyager, as the Terrellian woman Irina in “Drive,” and Enterprise, in “Bound” as the Orion woman Navaar.

Trivial matters: This is the first DS9 episode to be directed by LeVar Burton (a.k.a. Geordi La Forge), who had already directed a couple of TNG episodes (“Second Chances” and “The Pegasus”) and a Voyager episode (“Ex Post Facto”). He’ll become a regular director on all three spinoffs, with nine more episodes of DS9, seven more episodes of Voyager, and nine episodes of Enterprise going on his resumé when all is said and done.

After being mentioned in TNG’s “The Loss,” “Hero Worship,” and “Interface” and in Star Trek Generations, we finally see the Breen for the first time, who dress in much the same way that Princess Leia did in the opening sequence of Return of the Jedi. They’ll continue to recur on the show, particularly during the Dominion War.

This episode makes multiple references to the Bajoran-Cardassian treaty, signed in “Life Support,” and the new Cardassian civilian government established in “The Way of the Warrrior.”

The plot for this episode was inspired by the 1956 film The Searchers, directed by John Ford, a favorite of much of the writing staff.

Exterior shots of Dozaria were shot in Soledad Canyon, the same location used for the Cardassia IV labor camp in “The Homecoming,” and which will be used again in “The Ship” and “Rocks and Shoales.”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

We’ll see the consequences of Dukat’s choice to acknowledge Ziyal and bring her home in “Return to Grace” later this season.

At one point, Dukat quotes Kai Meressa. The Terok Nor novel Day of the Vipers by James Swallow will establish that she was the kai at the time of first contact between Bajor and Cardassia, though she died before the occupation officially started.

Walk with the Prophets: “It’s a big step.” The humanization (so to speak) of Dukat continues, though it’s a mistake to think of this as an attempt to make him more sympathetic. It can certainly seem that way, what with his warm embrace of Ziyal at the end, his willingness to damage his career to bring her home (said damage, as we’ll find out in “Return to Grace,” will be considerable), and him and Kira sharing a laugh over his sitting on sharp spindle.

The real danger is in Marc Alaimo’s considerable charm in the role. He has such a great speaking voice, such tremendous charisma, such a larger-than-life presence (both in person and in reputation) that seeing him cry over Tora’s corpse and hug Ziyal (and bend over to apply a dermal regenerator to his ass) is even more impressive. Look at this massive figure—he’s just a regular guy! He cheats on his wife! He sits on spindles! He looks crazy bending over to apply a dermal regenerator to his ass! (Which never gets old...)

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

And that’s the danger. Forgive me for Godwinning the rewatch, but the thing that people don’t really remember about Adolf Hitler is that he was an unimaginably charismatic person. Most of what we remember of Hitler is caricature, the leering insane figure of American propaganda and Warner Bros. cartoons, so we forget that leering insane figures don’t generally turn destitute, broken countries into superpowers that rule most of Europe and plunge the world into war. He was incredibly compelling and attractive to people, which is how he rose to power in the first place.

For better or worse, Dukat is a Hitler figure, even though he didn’t actually rule Cardassia. This episode in particular is where the notion of Kira and Dukat as a romantic couple first started really getting legs, and I was always repulsed by the very notion, and the analogy to me was Anne Frank falling for Hitler.

Of course, the way it’s played, the interest is entirely on Dukat’s side. We already got hints of this in “Civil Defense,” and this episode firmly establishes that Dukat has a thing for Bajoran women. Kira would prefer to never have to deal with Dukat at all, and at the end she makes it clear to Dax that even their shared moment of amusement after Dukat sat on the spindle served mostly to give her a memory of Dukat helpless and in pain to cherish.

For that matter, the script takes pains to remind us that Dukat’s an asshole, mostly in the runabout when Dukat tries to claim that the occupation was good for Bajor in that patronizing-parent manner of his. Plus there is the fact that he cheated on his wife. Said wife has such a minimal presence (this is the first time she’s been directly mentioned) that it’s easy to forget she exists, but she does, and Dukat has treated her with the same disdain that he treats everyone.

Ultimately, everything with Dukat is about control. He kept Tora and their daughter on Terok Nor until he saw the way the wind was shifting, and shipped them to Lissepia. Once he learns that she might have survived the Ravinok’s disappearance, he thinks only in terms of how the two of them being alive will affect him. Even though Kira’s likely right that he subconsciously told Kira about his plan to kill Ziyal precisely so she’d stop him, that doesn’t change the fact that murder was his go-to notion.

On the other side of the spectrum, we have Sisko, who’s been gliding along comfortably in his relationship with Yates, seeing her when she’s around, cooking her fantastic food, and getting lots and lots of smoochies (and likely more than that, but this is commercial television of the 1990s). Now, though, she’s looking at taking a job working for the Bajoran government which will keep her in the sector full-time. She tells this to Sisko and Dax and it’s the latter who points out that she could then take quarters on the station, and Sisko’s standing there with his mouth hanging open as the two most important women in his life at the moment completely change the playing field on him. Avery Brooks does a wonderful job of playing the rest of the episode gobsmacked, and it’s played for laughs (watching Bashir and Dax tag-team him in Quark’s is epic) at first.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Indiscretion

The highlight, though, is the last scene in the cargo bay where we get a rare instance of Sisko’s vulnerability: the last love of his life died because of his job. That’s some emotionally scary stuff right there, and you get the feeling that Yates knew about it all along (which is why she took the job anyhow) and was just waiting for his dumb ass to get around to figuring it out.

What makes the plot work particularly well is the superb talent and chemistry of the actors. Brooks and Penny Johnson attained instant sparkage from their first nanoseconds on screen together in “Family Business,” and it just gets better with each of Johnson’s appearances.

And that goes double for the A-plot. Nana Visitor and Alaimo have already established themselves as powerful presences, and we’ve seen them paired up to entertaining effect before, most notably in “Civil Defense.” Note that at no point does Kira ever come to an understanding with Dukat, she never trusts Dukat, she never gives any indication that she will ever think of Dukat as anything other than a monster, except in the spindle scene, where she’s willing to think of him as a buffoon. That cliché is nicely avoided, and it’s all on the back of Visitor’s brilliance in playing Kira’s nuances. She’s regularly on her guard with Dukat, the armor only buckling when she’s with Razka, at which point we see the comfortable ease that we only see with Kira when she’s around fellow underground fighters (with Tahna in “Past Prologue,” with the remnants of her resistance cell in “Shakaar”).


Warp factor rating: 8

Keith R.A. DeCandido is running a Kickstarter for a new story in the Dragon Precinct universe, featuring the characters of Gan Brightblade and his friends from that novel. He hopes you’ll support it—just two bucks will get you a copy of the story itself! Details can be found here.

Christopher Bennett
1. ChristopherLBennett
That picture of Sisko facepalming in his quarters is kind of creepy, because the lighting and wall decorations on the left side in the background combine to create the impression that there's a Romulan lurking in the shadows back there.

I was never crazy about the idea that Bajorans and Cardassians could interbreed by accident. They're so anatomically different, with Cardassians supposedly being pseudo-reptilian. You'd think they wouldn't be interfertile without at least requiring advanced medical intervention, as would later be established to be necessary for Trill and Klingons or humans and Vulcans (well, the latter wasn't made canonical until Enterprise, but the idea that Spock was created through genetic engineering goes as far back as the 1976 Inside Star Trek record album by Gene Roddenberry, and was used in various '80s novels).

I'm not sure if the writers had the Hitler analogy in mind at this point. I seem to recall them saying in the DS9 Companion that they eventually realized they'd "humanized" Dukat a bit too much and fans were thinking of him as a good guy, which was why they tried so hard to make him blatantly evil in later seasons (and I think they overcorrected there, but that's a discussion for some time from now). I think they were writing to Alaimo's charisma and didn't really realize the ramifications until later.

I asked this a few reviews earlier about Galyn Gorg's first name (and never got an answer), but does anyone know how "Cyia" is pronounced? I've always assumed it's like "See ya," but it's hard to be sure.
Keith DeCandido
2. krad
Christopher: According to her IMDB bio, she pronounces it "see yuh," as you figured. It's an unusual diminutive of her full first name, Cynthia.

---Keith R.A. DeCandido
Matt Stoumbaugh
3. LazerWulf
I'm glad I'm not the only one who saw the similarities between the Breen and Boussh the Bounty Hunter.
Uncle Mikey
4. Uncle Mikey
This episode really highlights the thing DS9 almost always got right: chemistry between pairs of actors. Farrell and Brooks, Johnson and Brooks, Visitor and Alaimo... In the latter pair, Kira loathes Dukat and Dukat has this strange fascination with somehow winning her over, which will never happen, and the two actors play it out PERFECTLY EVERY TIME. Circumstances keep throwing them together in working situations where Dukat gets to try to charm Kira and utterly failing, even while they actually make a tolerably good team in terms of what they're objectively trying to acocmplish!
David Levinson
5. DemetriosX
I'm sort of ambivalent about this episode (well, the A-plot; the B-plot is fine). On the one hand, it does everything right. All the reasons krad gave it an 8 are perfectly legitimate. And yet, I think I've always been too uncomfortable with the humanization of Dukat at this point. It just went a bit too far and too fast.

According to Memory Alpha, they hadn't really intended for any implication of a Dukat/Kira ship, but the subtext was there anyway. Then Alaimo suggested playing it that way from Dukat's point of view and they all thought it was a good idea, as long as Kira never saw it that way. And they stuck with it for a long time and it becomes progressively creepier on Dukat's part, almost stalkery.

Probably the most important long-term effect of this story is Ziyal helping Kira start to see Cardassians as people rather than The Enemy. I seem to recall that she's had a somewhat negative reaction to Cardassian/Bajoran halfbreeds before, hasn't she? Somewhere in the first season maybe?

The Breen wind up being one of the biggest open storylines at the end of the show. I wish we'd seen more of them and gotten a few answers.
Andy Holman
6. AndyHolman
I guess Kira and Dukat taking out a couple Breen and snagging their costumes contradicts what (I think?) was later established about no one knowing what the Breen look like under their uniforms. I guess it was really dark when they stripped these two Breen. ;)

Yeah, I think this episode is a pretty clear starting point for tracking when they started to humanize Dukat too much. Or, at least, mellow out Kira's relationship to him. During the standoff when he was threatening Ziyal, I kept thinking that Kira would actually welcome the excuse to kill Dukat. I suppose she refrained because she didn't want Ziyal to have to witness her father's death the way Kira had, but in that case, I think the episode could have stood to hit that point a bit more clearly. As it was, that moment seemed to me too much like Kira's going along with the writers to humanize Dukat.

Uncle Mikey
7. Jarvisimo
#5. DemetriosX, check out TOS Season 3 reviewer David Mack's Zero Sum Game for a comprehensive take on the Breen in all their contradictory appearances, and some of his and David R George III's later Trek books too (Plague of Night, Raise the Dawn, Silent Enemies and A Ceremony of Losses) for more Breen exploration.
Uncle Mikey
8. critter42
Is there a better run of episodes in Trek than the beginning of this 4th season? I mean, talk about firing on all cylinders.

Oh, and that first screengrab of Kira pulling the spike out of Dukat's backside? Priceless! It should be at least in the top 5 of screengrabs from both the TNG or DS9 Rewatch...
Beccy Higman
9. Jazzlet
Glad I wasn't the only one to see the Romulan in Sisko's quarters!
Uncle Mikey
10. Cybersnark
@ 6 & 7, Mack's novel helpfully suggests that some types of Breen self-destruct when exposed to warm air. It's possible that Dukat & Kira's victims went "pffft" as soon as they broke the seals.
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
11. Lisamarie
I can totally see where they are going with Dukat, since if I didn't know what I know, I MIGHT be tempted to think, "oh, he's not so bad, maybe he'll be kind of redeemed in the end".

Of course, then I just have to remember his justification of the occupation (uh, no) and the fact that he had a Bajoran mistress. Besides the fact that it is cruel to his wife, could this woman actually meaningfully consent to a relationship like that? Honestly, I found the whole thing rather creepy. And then trying to combine it with the whole spindle scene was just very odd mood whiplash to me.

I didn't think for a second he'd kill Ziyal though, as others have pointed out, he never would have told Kira if he was actually going to do it or really wanted to. He knew his culture dictated that it happen and maybe told himself he was going to, but I don't think he actually wanted to.
Matt Hamilton
12. MattHamilton
@1, that REALLY does look like a Romulan standing back there.

Behind every great man, there is a great woman. Such is the case with Sisko. As KRAD pointed out, she's just chilling in the cargo bay, getting some work down, waiting for dumbass to get the point. She knew, but couldn't let him know without him coming to that conclusion first. Good stuff.

Dukat is insane, I don't care how much they "humanized" him. The occupation of Bajor was very Nazi Germany-like in what they did and Dukat, being in charge, was, if not Hitler, than certainly a Himler or someone close to the top, one of the men on Crystal Night 38. Alaimo's portrayal is brilliant because it shows him as not just some mustache-twirling villain, rather, an actual person, a man of many dimensions who goes ever more insane.
Alicia Dodson
13. LynMars
@5 That "stalkerish" view of Dukat concerning Kira gets really creepy when we learn about her mother's actual fate in a later episode, alongside his general fascination with Bajoran women, which continues through the series in terribly uncomfortable ways in regards to him abusing positions of authority and even trust (his little religious commune on Empok Nor much later on).
Joseph Newton
14. crzydroid
@5: I think Kira started to see Cardassians as people way back in "Duet" at the end of the first season. I feel like there may have also been a few other episodes that gave Kira some "ah ha" moments (Maybe "Second Skin" is one of them). Not to deny that Ziyal maybe helped her in that, but I think this journey was started long ago.

That Romulan thing is hilarious.
Uncle Mikey
15. tortillarat

I have to agree. Personally the whole scene with Dukat sitting on a spike was just really awkward and ruined the episode for me.
Uncle Mikey
16. Ben74
The scene with the spike was pretty much ruined for me by Nana Visitor trying WAY too hard to laugh. As Keith pointed out several times, she's an outstanding actress - EXCEPT when she has to go to extremes. Her tears when Opaka died in Battle Lines, and her "uncontrolled" laughter here, to name just those two instances, are dreadful.
Uncle Mikey
17. James2
It's funny about Dukat = Space Hitler.

Alaimo's performance as Dukat left such an impression on me that he was my de facto mental voice for the DC Comics villain Sinestro during much of Geoff Johns' 9-year tenure on Green Lantern.

There are obvious differences between the pair, but I think some aspects of the way Johns wrote Sinestro -- especially as a Space Hitler -- reminded me of Dukat.

My mental casting of Alaimo didn't get any serious challengers until Victor Garber's vocal performance in 2009's Green Lantern: First Flight.
Uncle Mikey
18. RobinM
Dukat is a charming evil s.o.b. who gives us a glimmer of his "humanity" in this episode. I never shipped for Kira and Dukaht I knew it would never happen because of Kira's attitude and Cardassia's past on Bajor. I do wish that they could have gone deeper into what happens to Dukat and Ziyal on Cardassia once she is acknowledged in the series rather than the tie-in fiction . In Cardassian culture it is very shameful to have a child out of wedlock and a half Bajoran child I think could be worse for that Cardassian. The child's fate is worse ; the closest Earth cultural referent I can think of are the "dust" children of the Vietnam war era. Dukat's power mellows that a bit though not as much as you'd hope.
Uncle Mikey
19. Ashcom
One thing not addressed in these comments so far is that, much as they may be trying to "humanise" Dukat in this episode, you can't get round the fact that he is essentially going on this mission hoping to fail. The best possible result for him is to find everybody already dead. The second best result is for it to be a wild goose chase. In the first instance, it saves him from having to deal with the consequences, and in the second it at least delays the day when he might have to. So, essentially, I think the point is not that he was never going to kill the girl, but more that he didn't really know himself right up until the last moment what he would do if he found her, he was hoping for what, in his case, would be one of those best case scenarios.

As to the spike up the jacksee thing, I quite liked that and saw it as an "even the Queen has to poo" moment. Villains don't spend 24 hours a day being villainous, and they are not immune to undignified things happening to them. It was simply a reminder that this person has a life beyond being a one-dimensional "evil alien guy" which, quite honestly, too many Star Trek villains over the years have been.
Uncle Mikey
20. Bobby Nash
I never noticed the Romulan ghost in Sisko's quarters. Now I can't unsee it. Maybe it's the temporally displaced ghost of Vrenak. Ha!

Uncle Mikey
21. McKay B
Visitor's acting is definitely the best thing about this episode -- I don't even mind the hysterical laughter scene. She pulls it off IMO. And I never minded the subtext of romance between Dukat and Kira, as long as Kira always stayed sensibly 100% opposed to it happening (which she did, thankfully).

I never really liked the B-plot in this episode, possibly because I dislike when difficulties in romantic relationships are portrayed as entirely the (well-intentioned) man's fault. The film Hitch, for example -- it's a good movie, up until the climax when Hitch has to apologize his guts out when it's in fact the girl who should be doing the apologizing. Ugh. So wrong. This is forgivable on DS9, because other episodes of the Sisko/Yates relationship have an acceptable amount of complexity on both sides. But that doesn't make me actually enjoy this subplot.

I forgot about Bashir's zing against Quark, "Everyone." Love it -- even though Quark arguably is more popular in romantic contexts than Bashir. (Although being a Ferengi, he's also incredibly sexist at heart, which perhaps justifies Bashir's bravado.)

And I guess I have a higher opinion of Dukat than most others (at this point in the series). I never thought they "humanized him too much." Rather, they gave us a very good portrayal of a genuinely morally gray, complex character, who had both faults and virtues in great abundance. A character that, starting from this point in the series, could have ended up as either a good guy OR a bad guy. I think he's sincerely made a lot of personal progress since he ruled Bajor. Which makes it all the more interesting and poignant to watch the direction he eventually takes.
Uncle Mikey
22. NickM

You spelled Cyia Batten's name wrong. :(
Keith DeCandido
23. krad
NickM: Huh?? No, I didn't.....

Uncle Mikey
24. WideAndNerdy
@21 Yes! Yes! A million times yes! Its such a horrible cliche. Especially with Sisko. He's mature, very itelligent, very capable of handling complicated situations that involve intense feelings. And he's been married.

But no, he's the man which means whatever position he takes he's automatically the moron. I'm so tired of this relationship trope. I grew up with this.

And here's the thing, as with Hitch, Sisko is right. Yates and Sisko, if they've maintained their dating pace up to this point, have had maybe 6 or 7 dates. They've been seeing each other for 4 or 5 months. He is absolutely 100 percent correct that its a big step. And he's right to say it when she looks at him so pointedly.

And she's being entirely unreasonable to have the reaction she does. Don't get me wrong, I don't think she's out of bounds for reacting like that but its an irrational reaction on her part and she needed to come around at some point and recognize that.

Whats more, if she knew about his wife and how she died, she should have been a lot more forgiving. She should have apologized to him for snapping like that after she'd inadvertently dredged up his pain.

And if she didn't know that about his wife, then it only reinforces my point that they haven't been dating long enough and that there are still important things for them to get past (like, oh, the fact that she's in the Masquis).

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