Fri
Aug 29 2014 3:00pm

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch: “You Are Cordially Invited”

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited“You Are Cordially Invited...”
Written by Ronald D. Moore
Directed by David Livingston
Season 6, Episode 7
Production number 40510-531
Original air date: November 10, 1997
Stardate: 51247.5

Station log: DS9 is now the headquarters for the Ninth Fleet. Sisko and Kira are both happy to have things getting back to something like normal. Martok is less happy about being put in charge of the Ninth Fleet, as it means a crapton more paperwork.

Alexander is being transferred to the Ya’Vang, along with most of the Rotarran crew. Dax suggests to Worf that they get married right away on the station, instead of waiting until the end of the war to have it on Qo’noS. Worf agrees, and asks Alexander to be his sword-bearer.

Dax and Kira talk about the wedding, and how much Worf has been looking forward to having a traditional Klingon ceremony. And after going through five Trill weddings, she’s well and truly sick of the pomp and circumstance, and is more than happy to defer to Worf. However, first she must be approved by Martok’s wife, Sirella, since Dax is marrying into the House of Martok. Sirella, however, doesn’t actually approve of much of anything, not Martok, not Worf, and certainly not Dax.

Worf is surprised to learn that Sirella not only doesn’t approve of the wedding, she never approved of Worf being made part of the House of Martok. However, Martok was within his rights to bring Worf in—but the matters of household are entirely her domain as the Lady of the House, and Martok will not try to influence her decision, and he strongly suggests Worf not do so, either.

Worf asks Martok, Sisko, O’Brien, and Bashir to undergo kal’hyah with him and Alexander—the closest Klingon equivalent to a bachelor party, a four-day ritual. The five of them must go through six trials: deprivation, blood, pain, sacrifice, anguish, and death. (“Sounds like marriage, all right,” Bashir comments, prompting O’Brien to snarkily ask, “How would you know?”) Alexander doesn’t handle it all that well, but he insists on continuing the ritual. Bashir and O’Brien don’t do that much better, and at one point they’re hanging from a bar plotting Worf’s demise.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

Sirella rides Dax pretty hard over her part of the ritual, making her go through it three times, and Sirella tries to talk her into abandoning the marriage, for she will always be an outsider. Dax’s angry response is to do it a fourth time. She also spoils the the recitation of Sirella’s family by introducing a dose of reality (like the fact that the founders of the Third Dynasty took on the names of the members of the Second Dynasty to create the illusion of an unbroken line, meaning Sirella’s ancestor wasn’t an emperor’s daughter, but a concubine who took the emperor’s daughter’s name).

Dax decides to throw a party in her quarters, complete with a fire-twirler, music, dancing, and food. Odo comes in with two deputies following up on noise complaints. Kira says the party will continue on her authority. It’s the first time Kira and Odo have actually spoken, as they’ve been avoiding each other since the Dominion left the station. Finally they decide to sit and talk.

Sirella then interrupts the party, and when Dax refuses to end the celebrating to perform another ritual, they get into a brief clash that ends with Sirella cancelling the wedding.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

The next morning, a hung over Dax and Worf talk about what happened. (They briefly interrupt their chat to discover Kira and Odo in their closet, where they’ve been talking all night.) As far as Dax is concerned, Worf can finish his part of the ritual, and then they can get married in Sisko’s office. Worf is aghast at that notion, and says that maybe Sirella was right. (O’Brien and Bashir are relieved that at least they can eat.)

Martok goes to Worf on the Defiant, saying he has made a grave error. Worf admits that he does love Dax, but they are very mismatched. Martok points out that we can’t chose who we fall in love with. Sirella is no more who he expected to marry than Dax is who Worf expected. But to deny that love over a point of honor just leaves you alone with that honor, and honor isn’t very comforting when there’s no one to share it with...

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

So Worf goes to Dax to apologize, but she doesn’t accept it. So Sisko goes to talk to her, to remind her that she isn’t Curzon, who was a Federation ambassador to the Klingon Empire and helped negotiate the Khitomer Accords. She’s a young woman who wants to marry into Sirella’s family. And if she’s going to expect to be treated like Curzon, she should also know that kissing Sirella’s ass was always going to be part of the deal. She’s leaving it pretty late in the game to start complaining about Klingon ritual, especially when she herself was going on earlier to Kira about how cute Worf is about it.

And so Dax admits that she wants to marry Worf and she accepts Worf’s apology and she sucks up to Sirella, and everyone goes to Quark’s. Sirella starts the ceremony, talking of the gods creating the Klingon heart, and then creating another so the Klingon heart would not be alone. When the two hearts began to beat together, they became so powerful they destroyed the gods who created them. Sirella closes by saying that no force can stop two Klingon hearts beating together—adding, “Not even me.” She marries them, welcomes Dax into the House of Martok, and then Sisko, O’Brien, Martok, and Bashir attack the groom.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

The Sisko is of Bajor: The Federation News Service is publishing a book that collects the stories Jake wrote while living on the station under Dominion rule.

Don’t ask my opinion next time: Kira questions Dax as to why it’s only Worf’s wishes being fulfilled for the wedding.

The slug in your belly: The Dax symbiont is 356 years old, and the symbiont’s hosts have now been married six times.

There is no honor in being pummeled: Worf accelerates the wedding to accommodate Alexander, whose posting to the Ya’Vang means it may be months before Worf sees him again.

Preservation of matter and energy is for wimps: Odo and Kira finally talk out what they went through during the occupation. It happened off-camera, which is both unfortunate and kind of hilarious.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

Rules of Acquisition: Nog’s dancing during the party was completely improvised by Aron Eisenberg. Which is a good thing, as I’m frightened by the notion that someone told him to do that...

No sex, please, we’re Starfleet: It’s not clear whether or not Dax intends to seduce Lieutenant Atoa. My money’s on yes, though.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

What happens in the holosuite stays in the holosuite: Worf’s road to kal’hyah takes place on the holosuite.

Keep your ears open: “You’ve put on weight and your hair is going gray.”

“My deterioration is proceeding apace.”

“I thought you would be in your grave by now.”

“I shall endeavor to die this year, if possible.”

Sirella and Martok greeting each other.

Welcome aboard: Marc Worden returns for his second and final appearance as Alexander, Sidney Liufau plays Atoa, and recurring regulars J.G. Hertzler (Martok), Chase Masterson (Leeta), Aron Eisenberg (Nog), and Max Grodénchik (Rom) are all present. Finally, Shannon Cochran makes her third appearance in her second role on Trek, having twice appeared as the Maquis Kalita in “Defiant” and TNG’s “Preemptive Strike”; she’ll return as Senator Tal’Aura in Star Trek Nemesis.

Trivial matters: Worf’s foster parents and the crew of the Enterprise are not present, nor is their absence explained—though the war provides a handy excuse, certainly. While an attempt was made to get the TNG cast together for a cameo, only Jonathan Frakes and LeVar Burton were available, and they decided to make it all or nothing. As for the Rozhenkos, again, the war is a handy excuse (not to mention the fact that Georgia Brown, who played Helena, had died), especially given the last-minute nature of the wedding.

Worf was seen apologizing to the Enterprise crew for not waiting for their arrival to have the ceremony, blaming it on his desire to have Alexander there, in the novel Planet X by Michael Jan Friedman.

Glenn Hauman and Aaron Rosenberg used the ceremony established here as the basis for the first-ever Klingon-Jewish wedding between Captain David Gold’s granddaughter and a Klingon politician in the Starfleet Corps of Engineers story Creative Couplings.

The reference to Captain Shelby was supposed to be to the character from TNG’s “The Best of Both Worldstwo-parter. However, writer Ronald D. Moore had totally forgotten that the producers had promised Pocket Books that they weren’t going to do anything with the characters of Shelby, Selar, and Lefler, leaving them free to be used in Peter David’s Star Trek: New Frontier novel series. This led to a very embarrassed discussion among a very contrite Moore, Paula M. Block in licensing, and Pocket editor John J. Ordover. David covered this in the NF novel Martyr, by establishing another Shelby in Starfleet, who did make captain (an easy enough fix).

Shelby’s ship, the Sutherland, was previously seen captained by Data in “Redemption II,” also written by Moore.

This episode establishes that Curzon Dax helped negotiate the Khitomer Accords that were signed shortly after Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (a movie that also featured Michael Dorn as Worf’s grandfather and namesake). The novels Forged in Fire by Andy Mangels & Michael A. Martin and The Art of the Impossible by your humble rewatcher, among other stories, established that Curzon was an aide to Sarek of Vulcan as a young man, which is why he was at Khitomer.

Odo and Kira’s conversation in the closet was dramatized in Olympus Descending by David R. George III, the Dominion portion of Worlds of DS9 Volume 3.

This is the only time Sirella is seen on screen, but she does appear in The Left Hand of Destiny two-book series written by J.G. Hertzler & Jeffrey Lang, in which she dies with honor defending the empire.

Alexander will remain assigned to the Ya’Vang through the end of the war, as established in “Penumbra,” and beyond, as established in several novels that take place after DS9’s finale, among them the Genesis Wave books by John Vornholt, A Time to Kill by David Mack, your humble rewatcher’s A Time for War, a Time for Peace, and the aforementioned Left Hand of Destiny.

Worf mentioned in “Homefront” that the Klingons killed their gods. The ceremony provides one story for how that happened. Another will be seen in Voyager’s “Barge of the Dead,” with another in your humble rewatcher’s The Klingon Art of War.

Walk with the Prophets: “Kill Worf.” It’s nice after the heaviness of the occupation arc to get a more fluffy episode. Honestly, the whole thing’s worth it for Dax’s party with dancing Bolians, chest-bumping Morn, fire twirlers, and Nog doing that insane dance, the latter topped only by Dax doing the insane dance with him.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

The wedding itself is magnificent, a great operatic ceremony, and I love the ritual.

But ultimately, this follows the expected tired beats of every TV show’s wedding episode, with the reversals and the cold feet and the last-minute hearts-and-flowers declaration of love and it’s just so tired. Worf’s kal’hyah makes for one good joke—when O’Brien and Bashir think they can eat now that the wedding’s cancelled—but it’s not enough to cover the fact that only Martok and O’Brien count as Worf’s closest male friends—okay, maybe Sisko. But hell, Worf is closer to Odo than he is to Bashir. Having Bashir be part of the kal’hyah just feels like it was done because Bashir’s in the opening credits.

Just in general, there’s the issue with not having anyone from the Enterprise present—or even mentioned. Worf should be undergoing kal’hyah with Riker and Picard by his side.

And then there’s Sirella. We’re introduced to her in a scene that comes across as a third-rate Beatrice and Benedick, and then we never see the two of them again, so the scene feels even more forced. Her objections to Dax are tiresome, and her forgiveness of Dax’s shortcomings never seen or explicated.

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Rewatch on Tor.com: You Are Cordially Invited

Everything in this episode happens because the plot says it’s supposed to happen. It’s right out of the cliché handbook of how to do a wedding episode (several of which were inTNG’s “Data’s Day” for the O’Brien wedding, and in fact I kinda wish O’Brien had made mention of the fact that his wedding was cancelled and uncancelled, too), with only a few touches to separate it. One of those—which I really appreciated—was that in these stories it’s almost always the woman who fusses over every detail and the man who couldn’t care less as long as he’s married at the end of it, and it’s nice to see those roles reversed. Plus the bachelor party is a lot more interesting than guys at a strip club. (Then again, I share Bill Cosby’s attitude toward strip joints: if you’re hungry, you don’t watch someone cook a steak.)

I’m glad that Worf and Dax are married, partly because they make an excellent couple (amusingly, for the very reasons Worf enumerates to Martok as to why they don’t work—but Dax needs someone to rein her in, and Worf needs someone to loosen him up). And the ceremony really is magnificent. But getting there was mostly a chore. I would have rather seen Odo and Kira’s closet conversation than suffer through a paint-by-numbers wedding-prep story.

 

Warp factor rating: 4


Keith R.A. DeCandido is at Dragon Con 2014 this weekend. His full, and rather insane, schedule can be found here. He’ll be doing two Star Trek panels: “Star Trek Authors” today from 7-8pm (along with Peter David, Jimmy Diggs, Christie Golden, and Thomas Zahler) and “Klingon History” Monday from 11.30am-12.30pm (along with Erika Figueroa and Morgan Skye). He’ll have copies of many of his books, among them The Klingon Art of War and Farscape: The War for the Uncharted Territories, with him for sale at the convention, particularly at his autographings on Saturday (noon at the SFWA table in the Hyatt and 2.30 in the autograph area in the Marriott) and Monday (10.30am at the SFWA table).

37 comments
Wasia
2. Wasia
I take offense
Wasia
3. WTBA
I agree it was nice to have a lighter episode after the extended war arc; however, I also agree it was as stock as wedding episodes get.

The big flaw is the lack of information on the Kira/Odo conversation. I'd have taken an entire episode on that.
Christopher Bennett
4. ChristopherLBennett
I love it that we didn't see Odo and Kira's conversation. It's so charmingly subversive on the writers' part, having something so important happen between two characters and not letting the audience see it! I like it because it helps create a sense that, yes, these people have lives of their own even when we aren't watching them. After all, we don't get to watch the entire private lives of our real-world friends and family members. Often we just get glimpses and have to fill in the blanks. So in a way, it helps make Kira and Odo feel more like real people.

I like this one overall, mainly because Terry Farrell is just so utterly gorgeous in it. Really fun and lively too, but that's part of the gorgeousness.

I also like it because it's one of the few times we get to see a Klingon episode that's about a side of Klingon culture other than war and killing. It helps flesh them out more as a people.
Wasia
5. Ashcom
I must admit I didn't remember much about this episode and when I started rewatching and realised it was going to be the Dax and Worf wedding episode, I was immediately prepared to hate it. And maybe because of that, I was pleasantly surprised by how much of it I enjoyed. Yes, it was entirely by the numbers, but it had so many nice little touches that I found myself forgiving of that.

But I agree that the biggest problem was that it needed a resolution. Or, at least, one that wasn't essentially "we've all seen the error of our ways, even the unreasonable bitch queen from hell who for no apparent reason now seems to be fine with everything". Also, I was a bit disappointed with the wedding. It started magnificently, but ended with what was basically just a slightly Klingon version of the standard Christian ceremony. I felt that as it had started impressively Klingon, it should really have ended that way as well. I was reminded of the Dothraki wedding in Game of Thrones where we were told that the Dothraki didn't consider it a good wedding unless at least five people died. Somehow, I thought a Klingon wedding should be a bit more like that, involving blood and biting and some serious mayhem, and not just a bit of tame playacting with swords followed by "Do you take this man...."
David Levinson
6. DemetriosX
Literally the only thing I remember about this episode is Bashir and O'Brien hanging there, chanting "Kill Worf." The rest of it is, as noted, cliched and a bit trite.

I think it's possible to make an allowance for Worf choosing Bashir to be part of his ceremony. The two of them were together in that prison camp and could have done a bit of bonding off screen. Sure, Garak was there too, but asking him to be involved was undoubtedly going too far.
Wasia
7. Random22
I liked it. Even the anti-climatic Odo-Kira scene and the way Martok's wife drops the hostility when Dax kisses ass. Both made sense to me.

With Kira and Odo, well they couldn't remain at loggerheads if they were to remain on the show (and in-universe both remain on the station in their positions). On the otherhand, something as big as what they went through would take hours of conversation. Anything less would be too glib to seem real, and that it isn't something that could be shown.

With Sirella, well she is first lady of one of the great houses of the Klingon empire, and it is one that has not always been in the good graces, and her hubbie has already snubbed her once with Worf. She's just putting her foot down. I didn't get any hate towards Dax on a personal level, more she just wanted to be ass-kissed a little and be assured that the non-Klingon actually knew and respected enough Klingon culture to not destroy the reputation of the House. Once Dax was prepared to do that, then everything was fine.
Jason Parker
8. tarbis
Not the best episode, but far from hideous. It would have been nice to get a final Jadzia/Sirella scene to wrap up the plot, but there wasn't a lot they could cut while keeping the episode funny instead of boring.

I'll also go on record as being glad that there were no guest stars from TNG. If they had shown up the episode would have ended up being about them. This is Jadzia and Worf's episode you don't turning the wedding of two characters in the titles into a B plot for a pack of guest stars.

Nana Visitor is on record as not liking the unseen talk with Odo and I can see her point. It's hard to know how to play the resolution with another character if you don't even get to read part of the conversation. Finding them still in the closet was a good gag though.
Jane Smyth
9. Kaboom
I like the klingon wedding ceremony so much that I'm willing to ignore all the problems.
Wasia
10. Eduardo Jencarelli
Definitely clichéd, and ripping off every chapter of the rulebook for TV wedding episodes. But still undeniably fun and watchable, with some great character work on Dax's part. Having her be the point of conflict with Sirella made for some sparks.

On the other hand, despite all the fluff, I detested Odo and Kira's hand-waving resolution inside Dax's closet. Whatever happened to show, don't tell? Now that's what I call a reset button instead of the Prophets.

I never really understood why Worf and Bashir didn't get along. I don't recall Worf being astute enough of a character to notice Bashir's advances on Dax (which mostly stopped around season 4).

The TNG crew's absence, on the other hand, was a flaw. I get the actors being busy, which is why this episode should have been planned in advance. Not having Picard, Riker and Troi available for the wedding is just absurd. At least, the war excuses the characters.

@5

You make a pretty good point. It's weird to rewatch this particular wedding after having seen Game of Thrones. You expect a Klingon ritual to be a little more violent and bloody. But then again, there's no way Paramount would have allowed DS9 to get cute with a restricted TV rating. Certainly not in 1997.
Wasia
11. DougL
I didn't love it either, but I like the Dax character a lot, she might be my favourite Trek character, which is kind of sad given what's coming. So, I can give the episode a pass just because of her, but ya, I do often skip it when rewatching the series.
Wasia
12. bookworm1398
I thought it was a fun episode, esp the parts with Worf. And the ceremony was fantastic.
Christopher Bennett
13. ChristopherLBennett
@10: I wouldn't have wanted to see a violent and bloody Klingon wedding. Like I said, it was refreshing to see an aspect of Klingon culture that, for once, was not about violence. No civilization that's exclusively about violence and killing could possibly function. There has to be something gentler and more constructive to balance it, or they'd all wipe themselves out in a generation.
Wasia
14. NWCtim
There was a cut scene that tags onto the end of Dax and Kira discussing why Worf was doing all the wedding planning featuring Bashir and Nog doing some post-Occupation cleaning of their Quarters.

Weyoun was staying in Bashir's room and apparently loved to collect things. I by things, I mean random crap that most people consider trash. Then Nog comes along with cart filled with foul smelling garbage from his quarters, which Jake had to himself during the occupation.
Andy Holman
15. AndyHolman
The war's a good excuse for why various supporting characters didn't show up, but I wish they'd at least mentioned that as why Jadzia's family couldn't make it. As it is, this episode is one more that makes me feel like the Worf-Dax relationship pretty much turned Jadzia's into Word's sidekick, with no stories of her own that didn't involve/center around Worf. So I did like the party scene, since it was a nice reminder that Jadzia is a fun-loving person.

I also didn't like that Odo & Kira's conversation took place offscreen. It makes it come off like the writers didn't know how to resolve that, so they just waved their hand and said "Eh, trust us, this was resolved in a satisfying way."

-Andy
Wasia
16. quinne
Ultimately, Deep Space Nine was a loathesome excursion to a pointlessly political storyline occuring in the Star Trek Universe.

I think if Deep Space Nine had left out the whole Dominion and Changeling storylines, Ron Moore would have been forced to come up with someone far more creative than what we received in DS9.

I can't stand Deep Space Nine.
Mike Kelmachter
18. MikeKelm
Once again I find myself wanting to thank Rom Moore for fleshing out the Klingons and writing for Martok. He provides a great counterpoint for the starchiness of work and the violence that had previously been the only portion of klingoness we had seen so far.

And yes- this was a paint by numbers wedding but it felt good after all of the previous episodes. The wackiness with the Southerlands crew made me wish they had been a more reoccurring presence (as was at one point planned) and I do honestly think that Dax totally would have Gotten her freak on with the Polynesian firedamcer
Sara H
19. LadyBelaine
This is one of the pisodes that totally baffled me about Klingon society. I just can't figure it out. Is it very class-based with most of the Klingons we see being part of the upper aristocracy? Are they all products of a warrior house? Are there ethnicities among them? Was Sirella a haughty aristocrat's daughter and Martok a lowly soldier - if so, why is it the House of Martok?
Christopher Bennett
20. ChristopherLBennett
@19: It's the House of Martok because Klingons are patrilineal. As we saw in "The House of Quark," females are rarely allowed to control houses of their own.
Sara H
21. LadyBelaine
#20, well I get *that* but do all the Klingons belong to "Houses" and if so, I assume that they must have personal names as well as as patronymics because otherwise the House names would change quite frequently.
Brian Dolan
22. BrianDolan
I love this episode. Everything about it being paint-by-numbers is true, but it is still a great example of the wedding show. My kids watch DS9 with me, and this is the "wedding episode" all other shows will have to live up to. I bet they'll be wishing that the bride beats up her mother-in-law for pulling a knife at the bachlorette party... and I'll have to remind them to NOT attack the groom at the end of the ceremony at Earth weddings.

On Stargate SG1, episode "200", the plot is that the team is trying to help Martin write the movie of his tv show "Wormhole X-treme". It's really an excuse to make fun of Stargate and other science fiction shows. At one point someone suggests putting a wedding in the movie, and Martin says "Yeah, right, if I want to torture the audience on purpose!" I've always wondered if that was a dig specifically at this episode.
Christopher Bennett
23. ChristopherLBennett
@21: No, I think the Great Houses belong to the landed gentry, the warrior nobility. Much like the royal houses of European history such as the House of Hanover or the House of Stuart. Commoners don't have houses of their own, but are affiliated with the Great Houses of the families that control their territory, I suppose.

I believe that Martok has his own House because he earned an officer's commission on merit, one of the first to become a commissioned officer without being a member of the nobility. Since traditionally all officers were noblemen, that meant that a commoner becoming an officer was basically elevated to noble status as a result and got the privileges associated therewith, such as the right to found his own Great House.

As for House names, they're usually named for the head of the ruling family of the House, but sometimes they keep the name of an ancestor. For instance, Worf and Kurn belonged to the House of Mogh. I would guess the name wasn't changed because Worf, the rightful heir, was raised as a Federation citizen and didn't actually take over the House himself in a formal sense (and Kurn had to hide his affiliation with it for years).
Matt Hamilton
24. MattHamilton
I totally agree that it is contrived and tired, as every wedding episode on TV has ever been (with few exceptions). I also agree about Strip Clubs, even at 17 or 18, I never really understood the point of them.

There was one thing, however, when Worf and Martok are talking and Worf suggests that Sirella has Xenophobic views and Martoks screams about, "We're Klingons. We do not embrace other cultures, we conquer them." He says what they've always said about Klingons, but we never actually see them conquering neighboring worlds. Plus, one would have to imagine that the Federation, being allied with them, would not be too happy about them anexing other worlds, especially those close to borders of allies, or ones who have trade agreements with the Federation or Federation allies. I guess it's true when we see Klingons argue that the Federation has made the Empire weak, as the Federation rising to become a very powerful political entity in the galaxy would sort of clip the Klingon Empire's wings.
Nick Hlavacek
25. Nick31
If the Enterprise crew had been there then we wouldn't have had time to do much but deal with the consequences of that. And you know there would have been consequences.
Wasia
26. Eduardo Jencarelli
@13

I actually agree. It's nice to see a side of Klingon Culture that doesn't deal with bloodshed for once.

I was thinking more along a line of thought Nick Meyer once brought up: All films are a product of the time they're made in. That's why I made that Game of Thrones comparison, not necessarily for the display of violence but for the concept of not holding back narratively because of broadcast standards, as well as satisfying a more demanding audience which dominates today's landscape. In other words, 1997 isn't 2014.
Keith DeCandido
27. krad
I meant to actually say this, but there won't be another rewatch until Friday. Labor Day and Dragon Con ate my brain.....

---Keith R.A. DeCandido, exhausted
Wasia
28. happytoscrap
If the Enterprise crew were here, this episode would have gone up to a 7 at least! What a great scene that would have been.

For some reason, I never imagined they'd be there....but now that you bring it up, I can't fathom why they are not. war be damned.
Matt Hamilton
29. MattHamilton
I can see them not being there, the Enterprise crew. How many times has someone on Earth had to miss a wedding because of another important date or travel arrangements not being all that convenient? Now, imagine you are in a military or exploration service that travels between stars...not only do you have orders and can't just up and fly to the ass end of space for one person's wedding, you may be weeks away in another sector. I think that had they actually shown up, it would have been a contrivance.
Christopher Bennett
30. ChristopherLBennett
@29: Good point. Even without a war, space should be a really big place. There was a note in the writers' bibles to TOS and TNG advising writers not to treat deep space as a local neighborhood: Interstellar voyages should be major, time-consuming undertakings, actual treks, rather than easy and quick commutes. DS9 in particular tended to ignore this maxim and have character popping around between any two worlds within a couple of days or hours as needed -- the worst offender, perhaps, being "Armageddon Game" where they needed to make an interstellar journey back to the station in under 30 minutes to save O'Brien's life.
Mike Kelmachter
31. MikeKelm
@29 You beat me to it. In peace time I'm sure the Enterprise would find a way to wander itself over to the Bajor sector for the wedding. But this wedding was A) done quickly so that Alexander (and presumably the rest of the Rotarran crew) could be there for his fathers wedding, meaning that there wasn't time for the Enterprise to get there; B) taking place in the middle of a war. Which means that Starfleet would not let the Enterprise (or even the senior staff of the Enterprise) take a side jaunt... I'm sure that the Enterprise was heavily involved in the war given that it was the flagship of the fleet with what might have been the most senior available captain/command crew and was an incredibly powerful vessel. Outside of repairing battle damage, I'm sure that it was constantly involved in the fighting and didn't even spend time on blockade/patrol duty but rather being used as an interstellar rapid response force used to plug holes and perform offensive missions.
Lisamarie LiGreci-Newton
32. Lisamarie
I don't really care too much that the episode was cliched, it was fun cliche. Also. That dress. OMG. I think she wore it in another episode, and it's just as awesome here. I'm also kind of jealous I didn't get to go to that party. Although actually, her attempted seduction of the fire dancer bothers me a bit, so in my mind she's just flirting/looking. I frankly have never been of the opinion that the way to prepare for/celebrate an impending marriage is to start off by showing a lack of self control (as if your urges are something that can be quantifiably spent and then they're just gone) or that you have to indulge in the things you are going to 'miss out on'. If that's how you feel about getting married, you probably shouldn't be getting married. But I digress. Actually, I kind of like the Klingon idea of marriage prep being a little more solemn/meditative with a little bit of fasting, except without all the pain/blood, lol.

I loved the Kira/Odo thing because, honestly, I can't imagine what kind of conversation would resolve things for me that they could show on screen. It would HAVE to be an hours long heart to heart soul bearing. So I kind of live that alll of a sudden Dax realizes they've been in their closet all night long without realizing it. I really thought it was a very sweet moment and it reminded me of some of the similar conversations I've had with boyfriends or good friends talking until the sun comes up and then running through the day on that high (not that I'm really shipping Odo/Kira right now).

As for the dillema, I actually was quite torn and can relate. I'm Catholic and it was always very important to me that I date and marry within my faith. I have gotten some grief for this (or, at best, well meaning people telling me I'm too picky and I'll never find somebody, but I did, so ha :P ) but for me it's very important that I be with somebody who views marriage in the same lens I do, and that the ceremony itself was traditional and represented those things. I know others have been in successful inter faith marriages, but...for me it was what I wanted. So I can totally get Worf having second thoughts that she's ready to dismiss all of that and doesn't truly seem to respect it.

On the other hand, it kind of bothered me that she had to go and grovel, and that Sisko basically told her to shut up and get in her place. And frankly, I wouldn't want to be with somebody who converted/participated in a Catholic wedding just to appease me. On the other other hand, Klingon culture is different and in her culture, Sirella is due a certain amount of respect and presumably Dax always knew this going in.

I wish we'd seen a little more positive out of Sirella though - like, the whole 'insulting wife' thing is kind of funny when two spouses are on equal footing and you can tell they're mostly joking/teasing, but there's never a payoff where you see some spark of affection between Martok and Sirella and why exactly he loves her. If genders were reversed, it would probably be seen as more abusive, although we do at least see Martok had authority to bring Worf into the house. (Plus I'm not sure I agree we can't choose who we love and that's that...maybe not, but just because we love somebody or are attracted to them/have some kind of pull, doesn't mean a relationship is going to be healthy).
Christopher Bennett
33. ChristopherLBennett
@31: Actually Insurrection suggests that the Enterprise wasn't heavily involved in the fighting -- that instead Starfleet used Picard as its top diplomatic troubleshooter to go around negotiating with potential allies and new members. Which makes a lot of sense if you think about it. Diplomacy and marshalling allies is at least as important to a war as the actual shooting; the American Revolution would've failed miserably if Ben Franklin's diplomatic efforts hadn't brought France into the conflict on the colonies' side. Also, Picard was never primarily a warrior; he built his Starfleet career as an explorer and diplomat. So it makes more sense to use him where he can do the most good.
Wasia
34. Eduardo Jencarelli
@33: Indeed. It was the put out one more brushfire line which gave that distinct impression. And of course, Picard was planning an archeological expedition, while Federation outposts such as AR-558 were suffering brutal sieges.
Christopher Bennett
35. ChristopherLBennett
@34: As for the archaeological expedition, even in wartime, nobody's expected to keep fighting nonstop without a break. Combat personnel are generally rotated back home after something like six or eight months, because nobody can handle that much stress without a break. Granted, DS9 pretty much ignored this by having the main cast continue to fight the war nonstop for two seasons (another reason I think it was a mistake to drag out the war plot that long), but it's not implausible that Starfleet officers would still be granted leave time even in the middle of a war. As long as they don't all go on vacation at once, that is...
Wasia
36. Crunchy
@32 - This isn't the first time we've seen a DS9 character spout some platitude about relationships that sounds pretty but doesn't hold up under scrutiny (didn't Dax say something equally bad in Children of Time?). I think Martok is correct that we don't have the luxury of choosing who we fall in love with, but anyone who's ever been in a failed relationship knows it takes more than that to make a relationship work.
Wasia
37. TBonz
Not one of my favorite eps. I think part of the problem is that I never found Worf and Dax to be a good or even believable couple.

Then you have the utterly tiresome Sirella. What a bitch. Martok deserved better.

And hey, let's just stuff Kira/Odo in the closet and have their problems all solved by the end of the episode!

The only good points were O'Brien and Bashir suffering (the poor guys!) and Dax's party.

Why she wanted to marry the killjoy is beyond me.

I'd give the ep a two, and that's being generous.

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