|Tahna Los threatens Major Kira with a phaser in the runabout.|
Will this be the episode we finally find out more about Major Kira's history? What exactly are the loyalties of each member of our motley assemblage? And is Bashir going to be used humorously in the opening of every Season 1 episode? "Past Prologue" begins to explore the station and its environment more, and we learn more about the conflicts and ideals that underlie the nature of Sisko's new crew and environment.
Bashir continues to not wear on me. When he bursts onto the bridge with his excitement at meeting Garak, it's like a slightly older, out of control Wesley. Picard would never let that kind of emotionalism on the Bridge. Is a station slightly less regimented? The Kohn-Ma are also introduced in this episode: a league of Bajoran terrorists not entirely comfortable with the current peace or sure about their own loyalties. Here, we are introduced to a victim of the Cardassian torture we keep hearing so much about–and in my mind it justifies some of Kira's all-over-the-place anger. Have either Tahna Los or Kira Nerys truly renounced the Kohn-Ma? I note Tahna makes no real promises.
Lursa and B'Etor! I love visitors from ST:TNG, and Odo does a great job staring them down. They also firmly anchor the station in the ST:TNG world. Their part in the Plot of the Week becomes evident quickly when Garak points them out to Bashir–and when it does, all the threads of the episode begin to weave together. You know, I thought someone so blabbery would be a bit cowardly–but he does go back and sit with Garak.
Kira's expression when she thanks Sisko confirms my suspicions. She's a young idealist who's seen a little too much. I also enjoyed the view a second later: the dawning horror as she realizes going over Sisko's head has made their relationship even more tenuous is pretty convincing, and then she goes back to her frustrated all-over-the-place crankiness.
Garak drops his cover pretty quickly when threatened and reveals his ability not only to be a conduit to the Cardassians, but also to make deals on their behalf. Who is this guy? I love him because he's a double agent, and because he seems to be continually hitting on Bashir.
|Garak pulls Bashir up close and intimate to share spy secrets.|
Julian has no talent in the spy business. Neither does Kira. But her growing pains are the true drama behind this episode. Her idealism has led her to a new identity. Which, apparently, leads to some whining. Can a rap session help her let go of her old ideals? Will she support her old terrorist friends, or hope that she's on the right path now? Odo gives good advice: you can only be true to the you who are now. I love that he doesn't need Kira to tell him what to do: he sees her thinking cross her face and calls Sisko.
Tahna's negative duplicity is matched only by what looks like positive duplicity from Garak. Again, who is this guy? It seems clearly broadcast throughout the episode that Tahna is going to blow up something. A Cardassian or Klingon ship? It turned out to be the wormhole. My logic follows Kira's; it's a mistake. If you blow up the wormhole, you blow up one of the few resources an impoverished Bajoran economy has left (it's already established that their world has been stripped of valuable resources.) In the Age of the Borg, I'm not sure any civilization can afford to be so impoverished. Bajor needs allies, too: even if the price is the hurt look on Kira's face as Tahna's "traitor" registers. The last shot–a nonverbal look between Kira and Sisko–shows the support. The only ally who's been there and even given a modicum of thought to Bajor and Kira's needs has been Sisko and the Federation. All in all we're left with a glimpse into Kira's internal conflicts... and some hope they might, eventually, be resolved.
3 out of 5 Klingon-delivered antimatter bombs. The plot kind of dragged a little bit–I think the wormhole-blowing-up thing was obvious, although how it would work is Gobbledygook Science to me. Also, I think Kira whined just a bit too much.
Bits and pieces:
We meet plain and simple Garak, the only Cardassian left on the station, and a fashion designer, apparently, who appreciates thoughtful young men and double entendres. Maybe he can fix Jake and Nog's clothes.
In another fashion note: Has anyone ever pointed out that our stalwart Klingons are exposing the very center of their chests? I guess some might think it sexy, but my first thought was: ahh, warrior culture. They paint a target on themselves and hope someone tries.
|The fashion choices of Klingons tend towards war.|
"That Bajoran woman." I dislike the Federation admiral. Is this a sign of racism in the Federation?
Odo's mass bothers me. What happens to it when he becomes a mouse? Does he become an extra-heavy, dense mouse? I bet there's an explanation in the Compendium somewhere.
Remember a couple episode reviews back I talked about miraculous transporter saves? Here's our first for the series, as O'Brien apparently plucks our Plot of the Week from the raging wreckage at the moment he's bending over to shield himself from the explosion.
I'm starting to get some idea of how Sisko works. It's interesting. He likes to play dumb then smack people in the face with how easily they buy it.
Dax: What do you think he might want from you, Julian?
Bashir: I don't know. Federation medical secrets? Rest assured they're safe with me, Commander.
Sisko: I'm sure they are, Doctor Bashir.
Odo: Who are you?
Lursa: We are Lursa and B'Etor. Of the House of Duras.
Odo: And we have specific regulations. You can leave the weapons or leave the station. Your choice. Please make it now.
B'Etor: Who are you?
Odo: I'm the one giving you the choice.
(They hand over the weapons)
Odo: Welcome to DS9.