Tue
Feb 11 2014 4:00pm
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “Rejoined”

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined“Rejoined”
Written by Rene Echevarria & Ronald D. Moore
Directed by Avery Brooks
Season 4, Episode 5
Production episode 40514-478
Original air date: October 30, 1995
Stardate: 49195.5

Station log: Dax does a sleight of hand trick for Quark and Bashir, then reports to Sisko’s office. A team of Trill scientists are coming to DS9 and studying the wormhole by way of figuring out ways of creating more artificial wormholes. But the team leader is Dr. Lenara Kahn—Torias Dax and Nilani Kahn were married, and since joined Trills aren’t supposed to associate with people from their hosts’ past lives, Sisko gives Dax the option of taking some leave while Kahn’s team is on the station. But she decides to stick around because she’s a rebel and she won’t be hemmed in by squares.

A lengthy expository passage among Quark, Bashir, and Kira explains much of this, including why joined Trills are discouraged from reassociation—to the point that they’re exiled from the Trill homeworld and not allowed to rejoin after the current host dies. (It’s leavened by Quark’s hilarious attempts to figure things out and Kira’s outrage at the taboo against reassociation.)

Sisko holds a reception for the scientists. Things are awkward at first, but Kahn and Dax start having a very hilarious conversation about how everyone’s staring at them and wondering how they’ll react to each other. They joke about putting on a show—either getting into a huge argument or smooching each other—but they both agree to be responsible adults and behave like professionals. This sounds very convincing right until they exchange longing looks from across the room.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

In the Defiant engine room, the Trill scientists talk technobabble with Dax, O’Brien, and Eddington, and then Dax and Kahn go to the bridge to download some data. Dax hits a nerve with a comment that’s very similar to something Torias used to say to Nilani, and after some more awkwardness, Dax admits that Torias was stupid to take the shuttle that killed him out and she apologizes for Torias not listening to Nilani on the subject of the shuttle’s readiness.

Dax then asks Kahn to join her and Bashir for dinner. Only then does she ask Bashir along. He agrees to play chaperone as a favor to Dax—which he later regrets, as Dax and Kahn spend the entire time telling stories about past hosts. They even realize that Jadzia and Lenara have more in common than Torias and Nilani ever did. (At one point, Bashir, whose eyes have glazed over, is called away for a medical emergency, and the two Trill barely notice him beat the hastiest of retreats.) At the end of dinner, they wind up holding hands, to the dismay of one of the other Trill scientists sitting elsewhere in Quark’s.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

The Defiant makes the first attempt to create an artificial wormhole. (One of the scientists complains about Dax and Kahn to the other scientist, who’s also Lenara’s brother.) The first stage succeeds perfectly, and everyone’s happy. Kahn and her brother have dinner at the replimat, and her brother is not happy at the fraternizing between her and Dax. She assures him, though, that there’s nothing going on.

Kahn comes to Dax’s quarters, agitated about her conversation with her brother, especially since he may be right. They both still have feelings for each other, exacerbated by Nilani losing Torias so suddenly, and they kiss, thus guaranteeing that the episode (or at least the scene) won’t be shown in several southern U.S. markets.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

Dax goes to Sisko. He thinks she shouldn’t pursue restarting things with Kahn because the risks are too great. But he also admits that in her place, he’d also seriously consider throwing away everything he believes in if he loved the other person enough. In the end, he says he’ll back her no matter what she does, because he’s her friend and he’s there for her.

The second stage happens on the Defiant, as they create another wormhole and send a probe through. But the wormhole fluctuates and does damage to the engine room—where Kahn and Eddington are. Dax leads a damage control team there to find a plasma fire. Eddington’s hurt but functioning—Kahn’s on the other side of the plasma fire. Dax creates an angled forcefield and literally walks down it to rescue Kahn before they have to vent the engine room to put the fire out. Each was afraid they’d lose the other.

Kahn is recovering in her quarters. Her brother is actually willing to leave her alone with Dax—mostly out of gratitude for Dax saving Kahn’s life, though he still thinks she should go back to Trill immediately and forget Dax—and Dax gives Kahn some Risian perfume. Kahn figures she has her work cut out for her when she goes back to Trill—but then Dax invites her to stay on the station and work on the wormhole project with her. But she can’t do it. She can’t risk exile, not even for Dax.

The next day, Kahn gets on the transport with her brother and the other scientist. She and Dax exchange one last longing look across the Promenade and off she goes. Dax watches her go, looking very much like a puppy dog with Trill spots.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

Can’t we just reverse the polarity? We gotcher tensor matrixes, we gotcher probes, we gotcher target drones, we gotcher subspace, we gotcher stable artificial wormholes, and we got all the technobabble! But the coolest thing is when Dax creates a forcefield over the plasma fire that she can actually walk on in order to get to Kahn. That’s just cool.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

The Sisko is of Bajor: Sisko planned Curzon’s 100th birthday party, and it took him three months to plan it—so the fact that Curzon was late for it annoyed the hell out of him.

Don’t ask my opinion next time: Kira thinks the taboo against reassociation is stupid and that Dax and Kahn should be able to pursue a relationship if they damn well feel like it.

The slug in your belly: Torias was, like most pilots, a risk-taker. The live-for-now philosophy we saw in him when Bashir channeled him in “Facets” has a downside, as he left a widow behind who never got over his loss.

We also learn that Tobin was a magician, that Curzon was always late for everything (a trait that Jadzia inherited), and that Curzon also hated research.

There is no honor in being pummeled: Worf gets his first command since reporting to the station, as he’s in command of the Defiant for the wormhole tests.

Rules of Acquisition: Both Dax and Bashir pull a piece of latinum out of Quark’s ear at different stages. Bashir threatens that the next thing they’ll take out of his ear is a bunny rabbit (which would be awesome).

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

Tough little ship: The Defiant is used to test the artificial wormhole, and it’s badly damaged by graviton waves during the second stage. A plasma fire starts in engineering, there’s hull damage, and O’Brien will need two weeks to fix it all.

No sex, please, we’re Starfleet: Kahn and Dax are awkward around each other at first, but the sparks fly fast and furious the moment they start actually talking to each other.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

Keep your ears open: “What do Klingons dream about?”

“Things that would send cold chills down your spine, and wake you in the middle of the night. No, it is better that you do not know. Excuse me.”

“I can never tell when he’s joking.”

Kira trying to get to know Worf better.

Welcome aboard: Susanna Thompson—who can currently be seen as Moira Queen on Arrow—makes her third Trek appearance as Kahn, having played a Romulan in TNG’s “The Next Phase” and a mental patient in TNG’s “Frame of Mind.” She’ll play the Borg Queen on Voyager several times.

Kenneth Marshall is back as Eddington, and Tim Ryan and James Noah play the other two Trill scientists.

Trivial matters: The original story as written by Rene Echevarria has Kahn as a man. It was co-scripter Ronald D. Moore who suggested it be a woman. This resulted in the first (and so far only) same-sex kiss in Star Trek.

While this is Kahn’s only appearance, her work will be utilized by Dax in “In Purgatory’s Shadow,” and is also mentioned in the Dominion War novel Behind Enemy Lines by John Vornholt and the Q-Continuum trilogy by Greg Cox. Kahn herself appears in the comic book miniseries Divided We Fall, written by John J. Ordover & David Mack.

According to producer Steve Oster, someone called the Paramount switchboard and complained, “You’re ruining my kids by making them watch two women kiss like that.” The production assistant who took the call apparently asked if the man would’ve been okay with his kids seeing one woman shoot the other. When the man said he would be okay with that, the PA said, “You should reconsider who’s messing up your kids.”

During the reception, we see Kira wearing a Bajoran dress uniform, the first time such has been seen (Kira wore her regular uniform for the first contact in “Move Along Home”).

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

Walk with the Prophets: “I don’t have a little Curzon inside me telling me to be impulsive!” One of the things that gets lost in the hugger mugger about this episode following in the steps of “Plato’s Stepchildren”—which gave us television’s first interracial kiss—is that this is, at its heart, a tragic love story, and it’s rather a good one. The dialogue gets a little histrionic and tiresome toward the end, but it’s saved by simply superb performances by Terry Farrell and Susanna Thompson.

I’ve said it many times in both the TNG and DS9 rewatches: romance-in-an-hour storylines depend entirely upon the guest character, and this time ’round they struck gold. The chemistry between the two is perfect, as every scene they have together just sparkles. Probably the best is their first, as they awkwardly circle each other at the reception, noticing everyone looking at them, and as soon as they start actually talking to each other, they instantly fall into a routine as if they’d known each other all their lives—which they haven’t, exactly, but the memory of such is strong in both of them.

The Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: Rejoined

But of course all anybody could talk about when the episode aired was the kiss, to the point that this is generally described as “the episode with the lesbian kiss.” Except it isn’t, exactly—nor is it a heterosexual kiss. That’s what’s so great about it, and why this episode is so successful where other Trek message episodes have failed (like say the aggressively unsubtle “Let That Be Your Last Battlefield” or the abject failure that was “The Outcast”). It shines a light on an inadequacy in our own culture via an alien culture, but in this case it muddies the waters a bit because the taboo actually makes sense on the face of it. Bele and Lokai’s hatred for each other was arbitrary, shining a light on the arbitrariness of racism, but here at least there’s a strong argument to be made for joined Trill who were involved during past lives getting involved again. But as with far too many taboos, it goes blindly accepted and often unexamined and the consequences are too extreme.

The episode—the first collaboration between Moore and Echevarria, two of the best writers of modern Trek, both pulled off the slushpile by Michael Piller in TNG’s third season—is well structured, if a bit too predictable. It’s a pretty standard set of beats, and we’ve seen them bunches of times before, down to the love-interest-in-danger climax (cf. “Lessons” on TNG, which tracks structurally with this episode very closely), but we also get the taboo set up right off the bat, with Sisko offering Dax leave before we even know why he’s offering it to her. I also love using Quark’s confused inability to keep all the hosts straight while talking to Kira and Bashir as a vehicle for humorous exposition.

But the best part of all is that this is a love story, and the sexes of the participants is utterly irrelevant. The fact that the Kahn and Dax are both female has nothing to do with the story, which is as it should be. The love they share is strong—and it really does help that Farrell and Thompson sell it because that’s what gives the episode its heart and its message.

The 2014 television landscape is filled with people of the same gender being in love with each other and/or being in lust with each other, and I’m sure people watch “Rejoined” now and wonder what the fuss was about. But in 1995, this was still sadly very radical (though unlike “Plato’s Stepchildren,” DS9 did not pioneer the televised woman-on-woman kiss), and Paramount got a lot of flack for airing it.

Which is too bad, because the message here is important: that love shouldn’t be restrained by real-world consequences, but that it very often is.

 

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.

41 comments
Saria
1. Saria
It's not the only same-sex kiss in Star Trek. Mirror Ezri and mirror Kira kisses in the seventh season.
Matt Stoumbaugh
2. LazerWulf
I like the fact that the taboo isn't even about them both being women, and that nobody even mentions that point, not even the Humans or the Ferengi.

Speaking of the Ferengi, I love the look on Rom's face, after Bashir does the pull-the-latinum-out-of-the-ear trick, and the fact that he's staring into Quark's ear, wondering if there's more.
Joseph Newton
3. crzydroid
I found it really difficult to get around the premise for this one. Not only has Dax gone through several new hosts, but the Kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahn!!! symbiont has also changed hosts. So it's not even Tobias' wife anymore either. They're both completely different people. We've been told before that joined Trill are neither like the pre-joined host nor the symbiont/host before the latest joining, that the new person is a blending of the two. So it's not even like they are the two people that were married anymore. I feel like the issue is more just the in-your-head anticipation that this person has the symbiont that the spouse of one of your symbiont's past hosts had. Then there's the other issue of the taboo, which is, what if the new joined Trill would have fallen in love with each other anyway, even if they hadn't been married before? They even said in the episode that Jadzia Dax and Lenara Kaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaahhn!!!! were a better match for each other than Torias and Nilani ever were. And surely there must be symbionts running into symbionts they were married to all the time, right? I get that there are a limited number of them, but having gone through several lifetimes maybe increases the odds of meeting again. So suddenly there's supposed to be this irresistable attraction because of some expectation?

My difficulty in getting past all this made it even that much harder to watch the poorly written love/romantic scenes. Everything in this episode was an awful cliche. And on top of it, the whole romance just seemed entirely forced. I thought the actress who played Lenara was pretty good on her own, but I feel like she had no chemistry with Dax. Actually, in the reception scene at the beginning I thought she had a lot more chemistry with Worf! During the scene where they were trying and failing to resist kissing each other, one of them is brushing her two fingers over the other's lips, in a way that just made it seem like they were trying to force some lesbian eroticism in there. Why couldn't it just be a romantic scene? This all just really made the episode really lousy and completely difficult to watch. I couldn't even watch the emotional crying scenes without thinking they were over-the-top and cheesy, and I don't know if it's because the acting was really that bad or if everything was just that cliche and forced and I never accepted the premise.

And why does Sisko want to prevent Jadzia from going into exile with her former wife, when in the awful Brigadoon episode he was totally willing to let her run off into subspace for a hundred years with some creeper she just met? (I get that the idea was that Dax would also die, but it seems like much the same idea with a completely opposite stance).
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
4. Lisamarie
I'm leaving this comment before reading the other comments or commentary, just so I can leave my thoughts without being influenced.

I really don't think Dax comes off well in this episode. I also really cringed at Terry Ferrel's acting (OMG, so dramatic!) - but I tend to be low key and not very emotionally demonstrative so I found her way over the top, especially at the last confrontation. I very much liked the other woman though.

Anyway, a few thoughts.

First of all, if reassociation is so horrible, why are Jadzia and Sisko even allowed to hang out as much as they do? I could have sworn they said 'frends, spouses, children' when listing off who shouldn't hang out (this reflects where I am at life, but the children thing is what made me really sad. If I had children and then died young, it would be very painful for me not to be able to interact with them anymore as a rejoined host).

Anyway, I found this entry very interesting, and an interesting look in the kinds of things that would be issues for a society such as this. In some way, I feel that I can't pass judgement on the taboo itself - I can't in any way relate to being physically joined with another being, mesh my memories with past hosts, and then move on to another one. It may very well be that this taboo is in fact a good thing. For example, we have taboos in our society (such as sexual activity with children) that we still mostly agree are good things. However, there are also taboos (such as attitudes regarding interracial relationships) that while there may be some possible reason for it from our ancient history, we've mostly agreed are arbitrary and should be moved past. Which category this falls under, I can't tell, and the episode doesn't really tell us either. (Personally, I think it's kind of dumb, but again, not being one of them, don't share their unique physiology and psychology, I can't actually make a judgement on if assocaiting with past hosts would be a truly harmful thing or not).

The other thing for me, that is interesting, is trying to determine how Trills view gender and sexuality. In the 'real world', to me (I know there are many philosophies regarding this), your body and gender are very core things about a person, and integrated with your being. I don't view the body as just a husk for your true self and more or less interchangeable. So, for example, in that episode where Crusher dates a Trill and is a bit freaked out when he changes hosts - I can empathize with that because it DOES make them a different person (especially when you consider gender/biological sex changes, which is a much different can of worms and there's a whole lot of discussion that can be had there too). So, at first, I found it a bit hard to swallow that it was going to be so akward for them, especially as previous episodes have gone to pains to establish that new hosts are *different people*. Which is also partially why I found the taboo a bit over the top, especially considering that both of them have new hosts, so are both different people. Does this mean that the symbiont is a much more dominant part of determing who the person is, and the 'true' person is really the symbiont? I suppose that since part of the host is now also part of the persona that could be a part of it as well, but it seems like it would still be different enough.

I also wonder, do the symbionts themselves have genders or sexualities, or is that just a quality of the host, and could it perhaps be influenced by previous hosts as well? I don't think there's been any other indication that Jadzia was attracted to women (there may have been, I just don't remember), but I wonder how all that would have played out if Jadzia identified as strictly heterosexual, or if for Trills they have a much more fluid concept of that, and if that is different for joined vs. non joined Trills, and how their society views all that. The taboo here is the reassociation, not the fact that they both had female hosts. It seems at least for the joined Trills, the connection was between the symbionts (or at least the merged personalities) and transcended the physical hosts (which, is not really how I view love, but it makes sense that a species that can do all the stuff Trill do and be a combination of many persons are going to have a much different way of viewing it!)

Anyway, leaving all that aside, although I'm sure it could be discussed for days, Dax seriously irritated me. She lost me at 'nothing matters but our feelings' because, OMG, I absolutely hate that sentiment as well as things like 'follow your heart' and 'do whatever makes you happy', etc. And I think she is totally wrong that they are the only ones who would have to live with the consequences. Exile would have consequences for the symbionts, for the rest of Trill society, for all their family and friends, etc - now, perhaps those consequences would stilll be worth it, and maybe the taboo really is crap, but to act like they are just in this little bubble of loooove is just, bleh (granted, I also think that things like relationships and marriage are also part of the community). Pretty much every time I see people say things like that in real life, they are leaving behind emotional wreckage in their wake, with very real consequences.

I'm also glad they didn't resolve it by just killing Lenara, I was worried they were going to take that route, which would have been a horrible cop out and a pretty bad disservice to her character. But ultimately, I think she made the right choice.

And, now I'm curious to see what krad and the others have to say!
Saria
5. Eduardo Jencarelli
As a writer, if I believe the story, the characters, and the stakes involved, there's not much that can go wrong. It certainly helps if the actors invest themselves in it as much as I do when I write it. Rejoined is one of my all-time favorite hours of Trek because of this simple rule.

Both Terry Farrell and Susanna Thompson elevated the material. By far the most poignant love story ever told on Trek (if anything, I thought Farrell grew as an actress, earning more range and subtetly, especially compared to that first season).

I often wonder if Lenara should have resurfaced during season 7, following Dax's death. This is a story thread I would have welcomed back. She could barely handle Dax's loss the first time around. This would have been worst fears coming to fruition yet again. I can certainly picture her having scenes with Nicole DeBoer.
Saria
6. Lsana
@4,

Can I just add an, "Amen" to your antepenultimate paragraph? I too get annoyed by that sentiment. Love is a wonderful thing that can lead us to great things, but it can also lead to some remarkably distructive impulses when treated as if it's the only thing that matters (see Love Makes You Crazy and Love Makes You Evil on TVTropes if you'd like examples aren't planning on doing anything with the rest of your day). The message that "Love shouldn't be restrained by real-world consequences" is a terrible one.

As to the episode itself, I've got nothing to say. This is just one that never did it for me. I had certainly heard about the controversy, but love stories have never really done it for me, and I got bored and turned this one off halfway through. I'll say that I thought it was kind of clever to make the relationship a "controversial" one both from the point of view of the characters and the 90s audience, though for different reasons.
David Levinson
7. DemetriosX
IIRC, the kiss is really only implied. They get as close as they are in that picture just below them holding hands at dinner and then smash cut to commercial. Considering I watched this in the Los Angeles market, I don't think it was censored. I remember reading that Terry Farrell had qualms about an actual kiss and so they never actually did it.

This was also viewed very cynically at the time it first aired. A lesbian kiss was a sure ratings grabber for just about any series and a lot of people saw this as nothing more than that. (And it was heavily hyped, too, in the weekly run-up to the episode.) A lot of that has probably colored my opion of this episode very strongly and I can't see it as much more than a 6.
Saria
8. J Town
I don't recall this episode, and I'm generally a huge fan of the re-watch and your thoughtful analysis, but I simply must say that I completely disagree with this statement.

"..love shouldn’t be restrained by real-world consequences..."

Love is a feeling and people are free to feel however they please. Actions taken because of love, however, have huge and sometimes catastrophic consequences in the "real world". Love doesn't happen in a vacuum, and other people other than the lovers are ALWAYS affected. I'm sorry but the idea that everything that happens as a result of love is ok simply because "hey, it's love!" is one of the most self-centered and damaging concepts that exists. And a pox on Hollywood for its perpetuation.
Joseph Newton
9. crzydroid
@7: You either saw a censored version or you don't remember, because I watched the DVD recently and they definitely have a full on kiss.
Keith DeCandido
10. krad
DemetriosX: crzydroid is right. Having just watched this yesterday, I can assure it, it was a full-on kiss. :)

J Town: I actually agree with you, as is obvious by the part of the quote you deliberately left out, which is the next clause. If you're going to quote me, use the whole quote in context, please, and don't quote half of it to make a "contradictory" point that I, in fact, agree with.

---Keith R.A. DeCandido
Chris Lough
11. TorChris
Sounds like you saw an edited version, DemetriosX. Here are screencaps of the full kiss from that scene.
Saria
12. Ashcom
@6 (&4)

I don't think the sentiment is that "love shouldn't be restrained by real world consequences", but rather that sometimes it just isn't. I have personally been so crazy in love that I've been willing to do completely illogical things (including throwing everything up and moving to another country). I saw them afterwards as illogical, but at the time they were just the only thing to do, and that's what is being represented here. You may not like the sentiment, but it is realistic.

Having said that, I found this an okay if not spectacular episode, elevated by the fact that Trek is usually pretty lousy at doing romance, and this time it got it mostly right. I know when I first saw it that it was pretty obvious very early on what the episode was going to be about, and I cringed expecting the worst, and was pleasantly surprised by the fact that it turned out okay.
Saria
13. J Town
Krad,

I was not attempting to distort your view and if that is how it came across, then I apologize. However, perhaps I'm just tired, but I don't see how leaving out "but that it very often is" changes the sentiment at all. If you use the phrase "shouldn't be restrained" in conjunction with, well any topic, and then follow it up "but often is", the implication to me is that, in a perfect world, whatever it is would in fact NOT be restrained. I'm not sure how else to read it, to be perfectly honest. But again, I'm tired and perhaps am missing something obvious...?

And you are correct in that you did not state that it was specifically a message that you endorsed. I simply inferred that since you gave the episode such a glowing review and since you said the message was important, that you agreed with said message.

So let me amend my statement by saying that, whether you personally subscribe to that sentiment or not, I do agree that the episode, as described, does seem to champion it and further that I disagree with it vehemently. If you agree as well, then excellent, as I really am a fan of your writings. I hope no offense was taken, as I certainly intend none to you.
David Levinson
14. DemetriosX
Fascinating. There's just no way the LA market would have bothered to censor a lesbian kiss. (I know I saw Michelle Greene and Amanda Donohoe kiss on LA Law.) And I have very clear memories of reading about Terry Farrell being uncomfortable with it. And yet TorChris @11 offers pretty conclusive evidence. I can only conclude that I have slipped sideways a couple timelines in the last 18 years. In any case, I still view the whole issue cynically as an attempt to capture more eyeballs.
Keith DeCandido
15. krad
J Town: Fair enough. :)

---Keith R.A. DeCandido
Saria
16. Jim Gamma
Slight correction - the Plato's Stepchildren scene is the first scripted interracial kiss, but not the first actual one, on TV. The first actual one was an ad lib in 'Movin' with Nancy' between Sammy Davis Jr and Namcy Sinatra, a few months earlier.

Source: http://m.neatorama.com/2013/04/10/TVs-First-Interracial-Kiss/
Christopher Bennett
17. ChristopherLBennett
If they'd cut away before it got hot and heavy, the episode wouldn't have been as controversial as it was. There was a lot of protest over this at the time -- which I thought was stupid, since I found it beautiful (and really really hot).

And @7, the "smash cut to commercial" should've been a dead giveaway that the scene was edited. Smash cuts to commercial are a fairly common editorial practice these days, but DS9 generally used a good old-fashioned fade to black along with a musical sting or crescendo.

What I love is Kira's dialogue here. "One thing I don't understand is why Dax and Lenara can't just pick up where they left off. I mean, if they're still in love with each other... How can it be unnatural for a married couple to resume their marriage?" She just takes it for granted that it's okay for them to be together, and the fact that they're both women is a complete non-issue for her. There's a powerful statement there in what isn't being said.
Saria
18. JL Sigman
@4, agreed, they didn't handle the re-association well (or ever again, really) since Ezri shows up in the last season. It never made sense to me.
Saria
19. Brian Eberhardt
The kiss was never shown in Ontario, Canada when this first aired. Quark was hysterical.
Amanda Martino
20. isismaat
@4 and @18 - Ezri showed up in the middle of a war, though, when there weren't many (if any) research projects going on. I actually think it might have been more awkward to shoehorn a reuniun with Lenara in there just for the sake of having one. I also think it would have weakened the end of this episode; Lenara leaves because in her mind it's the right decision and she doesn't want to risk exile just to be with Jadzia. Coming back just because Dax is in another host seems like it would undermine that.
Saria
21. Ward3
This is not the best DS9 episode, but I really like it anyhow. It was a bit over the top histrionic at the end, yes. I don't think that it is overacted mostly though. Some of the fierce looks that Jadzia gives Lenara are so reminiscent for me of the first grand passion I had in my life. And I would have been quite happy to kiss either of those women!

Whether I like the way it ended or not, I thought it was done with sensitivity and a lot of passion. If either actress was uncomfortable, that never came through for me - it seemed real. There was that fire that I recognise myself.

I never saw DS9 when it first came out, and have only caught up with it recently. I wish I had seen that episode then, since it was about the time I ditched a horrible marriage, and came out. It would have had a lot of meaning, and a lot of strength and insight into the forbidden, and what it is worth to love. By the way, it has been worth it. I always thought that Dr. Crusher should have been more flexible with her Trill lover (this is when I was supposed to be straight), and was disappointed then, but this episode was a bit easier to take. While it's not the best, it is important to me.
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
22. Lisamarie
@17, regarding Kira's dialouge - the unnatural thing I could possibly see is that they aren't really the same people (and Dax has been a few other people besides), but perhaps for Trills, that whole concept is a bit fluid. In a way I can see how it is a little too much like living in the past - Torias and Nilani are dead, their lives are over, so presumably Jadzia and Lenara should be going and having new experiences, not trying to rehash the life of previous hosts. But at the same time, if they are truly different people, then it kind of IS a new experience so...my head is kind of spinning.

@21, I find your comment regarding Dr. Crusher rather interesting. I'm assuming that when you said you came out, you mean you came out as homosexual (although if you are bisexual, I guess my analagy is going to fall flat) - but would you appreciate somebody telling you to be more 'flexible' about being with a woman if you weren't attracted to them? And I'll be honest, it would be strange for me if my husband was suddenly another man in physical form. I can see where for joined Trill this would all be very different but, generally, for humans, bodies and minds/souls are pretty firmly joined.
Saria
23. Ginomo
I am going to bring this up again when we get to season 7, but why does Sisko react so differently here than in Afterimage? He tries to get Jadzia to leave the station to protect her from a spouse from decades ago, yet he has no qualms about inviting Ezri to live and work where her spouse from only a few months prior is.

And for someone who worked so hard to get a symbiont, Jadzia sure is quick to throw it all away for the romance of the week (I'm looking at you, Meridian)
Matt Stoumbaugh
24. LazerWulf
@23: I can only assume that the issue is that Lenara is a Trill (and a joined Trill at that) and that Worf isn't. Heck, that probably explains why it's okay for Jadzia to hang out with Sisko (and Koloth, Kor, and Kang, for that matter).

And while Jadzia did work hard to get the symbiont, it's kind of implied that it's her "inner Curzon" that wants her to rebel, an aspect she did not have when she was an initiate.

As a semantical aside, what's the difference between a symbiont and a symbiote?
Matt Stoumbaugh
25. LazerWulf
Also, it's just now dawning on me that Dax's sleight-of-hand prowess is probably how she makes a killing at Ferengi Poker (is that Tongo? I can't remember. The only one I know is Dabo, which is Ferengi Roulette...)
Saria
26. Eduardo Jencarelli
@25

It's indeed Tongo. Seen in the episode Rules of Acquisition.
Christopher Bennett
27. ChristopherLBennett
@24: "As a semantical aside, what's the difference between a symbiont and a symbiote?"

"Symbiont" is the correct scientific term as derived from the Greek. "Symbiote" was a word that SF author Hal Clement coined in his 1950 novel Needle because he didn't realize the word "symbiont" already existed and didn't know his Greek well enough to deduce the correct form. So in the purest sense, one is right and the other is wrong. But due to the popularity of Clement's fiction, the erroneous form took on a life of its own.
Saria
28. Ward3
@22, my coming out was just that I was more attracted to women than to men. I have not been involved with a man since that point in time. Yes, i appear to be lesbian. I guess the reason that I was disappointed with the Dr. Crusher situation is that I am not totally tied into binary gender. Male/Female is not an either/or proposition to me, but rather a scale that can change over time, or in different situations. I would also like to think that I am not so closed minded that I would not be involved in the future with a man, but since I am now married, it will probably never happen. I guess I like to think that it is what's inside that counts and is the basis for the relationship, rather than bodily exteriors, which even now can be changed.

I also have some trans friends who have remained married to the same person from their biological sex through transition to their new body, and I guess I see this is being part of the same kind of thing.
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
29. Lisamarie
First of all, I totally assumed you were a man from your name, sorry about that! (I was thinking of Ward as a first name, like Ward Cleaver).

Second of all - I do get where you are coming from, but I think for some people, gender is a bit more binary (or if not binary, at least something that is a bit more fixed, both in terms of how they identify and what they are attracted to) and so I am always uncomfortable when people treat that as some kind of moral failing or lack of enlightenment. If you're not attracted to a given gender, you're not attracted to that gender.
Christopher Bennett
30. ChristopherLBennett
@29: I agree. Saying that Crusher was wrong not to be attracted to a woman is no better than saying that, oh, Willow Rosenberg was wrong to be attracted to women. All preferences are equally valid, including the "conventional" ones.

And technically, Crusher didn't explicitly say she wasn't into women -- what she said was that she couldn't handle the constant change in her partner's identity. Although I suppose she did cast her inflexibility as a human failing rather than a personal preference, which is kind of problematical. There may be humans who would be turned on by the idea of their partner changing bodies frequently. Who knows?
Sara H
32. LadyBelaine
I remember really liking this episode thinking it was just classy. They could have been so, so much trashier about the Lesbians in Spaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaace plot, but it really is a quiet, restrained chararcter piece that sheds a light on a social implication of an alien culture. Plus, it helped that the character Lenara Khaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan was a refined, well conceived one. She seems like worthy companion for Jadzia Dax.

In my head, she ends up serving on the starship captained by Geordi's mom, crewed by Lt. Commander Daren, Lt. Stahdi, Robin Lefler, Sito Jaxa and the unnamed Vulcan nurse from Voyager. Sure you may think, Bel, that's weird because with the exception of Nella Daren, all those women are dead but I can't hear you.... la lal la la..... but just imagine how awesome that would be, the voyages of the starship...um, U.S.S. Hermione. With one or two token male crewemembers. One would have to be Chief O'Brien, just 'cuz and ... I dunno, who is an awesome one episode appearing male Starfleet officer? (But no Commander Shelby because she was dreadful).

The other thing about this is the very high production values, particularly the costuming. Lenara Khaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaan's dress is lovely, and even the Bajoran dress uniforms are very elegant, although I could never determine if they were grey or lavender.

However, I will continue to voice my grumps and harumphs over the godawful Starfleet dress uniforms, which look a) like raincoats and b) imcomplete with that band of golden braid that only sorta goes along one collarbone but stops in a weird place, far from the shoulder. IMHO, they would look vastly better if it just continues a little further.
Saria
33. Ed Jolley
@16 That was American TV's first interracial kiss. There was one on British TV 3½ years before that in a series called Emergency Ward 10 (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0159870/).
Saria
34. Idran
@32: Hey, Lefler's not dead either :D
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
35. Lisamarie
@32, I would totally watch that show!

Also, yes, I generally am so uninterested in fashion (I'm wearing snowpants at work right now), but I loved all of Lenara's outfits, and especially the earrings. I also thuoght she had very nice lips and the way her lipstick outlined them just seemed to really well with the way she did her hair and the earrings. I can't put my finger on it, but aesthestically, the way it all went together was very pleasing to me.
Saria
36. Bookworm1398
The thing I liked best about this episode is how the gender issue is never mentioned, the focus is all on why the relationship is inappropriate for a different reason. It was really well done.
The thing that puzzled me was the sudden concern that everyone was expressing over the symbionts dying, jadzia does dangerous things that could have led to Dax's death all the time. No one has expressed concern before.
Also, from a practical viewpoint, if they had 'eloped' and then had children, couldn't they have passed on the symbionts to the kids?
Joseph Newton
37. crzydroid
@32: I sense some problems with this setup, as Silvia La Forge and Rachel Garrett might be fighting for the captaincy of the Hermione.
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
38. Lisamarie
@36, I'm going to assume that you mean adopting kids (or some kind of in vitro thing), unless Trill biology is much different than I'm thinking!

But at any rate, I was under the impression that the symbiont transfer required some kind of specialized surgery/procedure. Which is not to say there might be some shady no-longer-on-the-medical-board Trill ex-doctor who would do such a thing...
Saria
39. DianeB
Boy, I LOVED this episode - and not just because of the kiss (though I have to admit it was hot), but because - just as Krad said - of the "sparkling chemistry" between Terry and Suzanne. They made everything convincing, and the show would've probably been just another "outcast" without it.

But here's the thing. What struck me most was that whole idea of what might happen to Trills who reassociate - because you know there HAD to have been some. In inspired me to write fanfic about it, just so I could get it out of my head. Can't say I got it right, but I sure had fun.

The "hugger mugger" about this episode. Har!
Saria
40. Terror and Love
Susanna Thompson from Arrow!!!!!!!!

I'm watching Arrow and just where do I know her from the whole time. And its here all this time.

Thats like one of my favorite people on that show.
Cain Latrani
41. CainS.Latrani
Lot of comments on this one, so forgive me if this got mentioned already, but a lot of praise should go to Avery Brooks superb direction of this episode. The actors had wonderful chemistry and were believable in a fairly by the numbers plot, but it was Brooks direction that made it all shiny.
Edward German
42. Captain48
I still rember when this ep frist aired on my hometown station. DS9 was being shown on the local FOX channel at that time and I am from a city that is in the heart of the bible belt. before the show begain, the station put up a disclamer that they did not public edorse or it did not respresent the opinons of the station or its staff, something to that effect. well that was a first and the only time I have seen any tv staion do that since. now 20 years latter it is so blasie.

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