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Star Trek Deep Space Nine: Strange Bedfellows

It's never too late. The worst of us can be redeemed.

Kai Winn has a vision that changes the course of her life while Cardassia realizes exactly who's dominating who in the Dominion, Ezri and Worf do a Jerry Springer Special in a Cardassian Holding Cell and Gor makes electronic noises.

I don't know if I'm the only one to find this episode amusing and even edifying. It does a great job delivering the plot; it also does a great job of giving Martok, Kasidy, Sisko, Worf, Ezri and the rest different moments that show just why we have the alliances we do. This episode has quite a bit going on; three main storylines as well as bits from the main crew compete for our attention. Effective writing and directing ensure our engagement.

Worf and Ezri are working out what it means to have had a relationship when one of a couple is but isn't the same person anymore. Having that 'backslide' moment, and learning you can forge ahead anyway, is a great achievement for a couple-turned-friends. I thought this was one of Ezri's chances to shine, showcasing not only the Trill but also Ezri as a character. There seems to be some sort of morality regarding promiscuity in the future, or why would Ezri hold so hard to the fact that Dax was sexually open to justify her own sexual openness? There's a lot going on here in a Cardassian holding cell, and it's all good stuff: Worf killing a Weyoun, and having the Cardassian component of the guard shrug and essentially say good riddance, even contributes a lot to setting up the second storyline and cementing the galactic impact of this war.

The Cardassians are getting used grievously by the Founders and their Vorta. How long before they just throw off the yoke? Damar looks ready to, and I love that he justifies a complete lack of caring about Vorta survival with the Vorta being clones; they're clearly not the same people. After watching half a million Cardassian warriors becoming cannon fodder without need, Damar is wondering if joining the Dominion was worth any fraction of the dubious gains the Vorta claim have been made from those deaths.

While the Dominion relationships are fraying, the same can be said for the Federation's allies; it seems Bajor's leadership is being badly impacted on a spiritual level, and that poor Kai Winn – helped by the supposed love of a Gul Dukat in disguise as Bajoran labor camp survivor Anjohl – is moving from a path of at least nominally serving the Prophets to being a follower of the Pah Wraiths, especially after Kira points out that power and a hunger for power have been behind all of Kai Winn's failures, and that a true path to the Prophets might require giving up the role of Kai and the leadership of Bajor. I love that Winn is unable to even fathom the humbleness needed by such an act, or the truth in Kira's words. Instead, she holds on to power and commits herself to the Pah Wraiths.

The notion of strange bedfellows is not a subtle one for this episode: the literal relationship between Worf and Dax is echoed by the political and religious relationships in the other storylines, making this one of those episodes with an on-the-nose title.

Bits and Pieces

O'Brien and Quark's Rhapsody of Ezri just makes me wonder. It does echo how everyone seemed to feel about Dax, however. Maybe this is how those two characters are similar?

Worf's notions about love were deeply explored here. Does anyone else have a gigantic Worf crush?

Expert Words

Weyoun: Gifts? How thoughtful. You should be honoured. You're witnessing an historic moment. The birth of the alliance between the Dominion and the Breen.

Martok: I remember the day my beloved Sirella moved into my home. I had a pet targ. Had him since I was a boy. A filthy, mangy beast, but in his bony breast beat the heart of a warrior. Of course, Sirella loathed him. Well, to make a long story short, while she was supervising the unloading of her bags, Sirella accidently left the front door open, and my faithful targ, ever ready to follow the call of the wild, tottered outside on his frail legs and disappeared into the forest. I never laid eyes on him again.

Bashir: I don't know. But there was something, something about her, wasn't there? Something that made me happy, anyway. She was this old soul and yet so young at heart, and, and, I don't know what I'm saying.

Worf: I realize Jadzia saw physical love very differently than I do. To her it could mean many things, but to me it is a deeply spiritual act. When I made love to you, my motives were not spiritual. It was an unworthy impulse.


A worthy episode giving us some character development amid the intergalactic battle. Five out of five easily replaced Weyouns.

1 comment:

  1. Worf's wringing the neck of a Weyoun - and how Damar laughed afterwards - is one of the greatest moments of the series. Never turn your back on a Klingon.


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