Editorial: Star Trek Deep Space Nine – Thoughts On The Series 25th Anniversary
By Jonathan Balofsky On 3 Jan, 2018 At 09:29 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, Old School Otaku, Opinion, ROG News, Television | With 1 Comment

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25 years ago, the world of science fiction changed forever. Star Trek was already an established franchise, with Star trek The Next Generation having become a juggernaut in its own right. But January 3 1993 saw the premiere of Star Trek Deep Space Nine, a series that truly helped move the franchise forward. I have so many fond memories of this series, and I do not hesitate at all to call it my favourite of the Trek franchise. I will do my best not to give spoilers so people can experience this for the first time themselves, but I will in some instances.

DS9 stands out above the other Star Trek series by doing something that had not been done before, and that is developing long running character and story arcs. This was possible thanks to the series being set on a space station instead of a ship travelling to different locations, and the recurring elements this enabled ended up creating some of the best storylines.  There is so many great storylines that can be mentioned such as the Dominion War and the rebuilding of Bajor, but for many the best storylines were the ones that delved into showing both character growth and the darker side of Star Trek.

Ferengi culture was explored far beyond what was done on TNG, and so were the Klingons and the Cardassians. This was done thanks to great characters who showed off the different parts of the cultures. The Ferengi gave us Quark, the traditionalist Ferengi, his “failure” brother Rom, who was actually a genius engineer, and Rom’s son Nog who joined Starfleet. The Klingons of course gave us Worf once again, but also Martok. Martok was a traditional Klingon, and one who showed off the best aspects of the culture in contrast to Gowron, who showed the negatives. And the Cardassians? We received two of the most iconic non main cast members in all of Star Trek: Gul Dukat and Elim Garak.

The main cast went through many changes in terms of personality and growth. They were not the same characters at the beginning that they became at the end and the best example was Captain Sisko himself. When he came to the station as Commander Sisko, he was a reluctant appointee and had a lot of hostility in him due to the death of his wife during the Battle of Wolf 359 with the Borg. However, he grew into his many roles and became perhaps the greatest of the captains. Sisko was willing to do things no one else would and realized that if it got the results he needed, then he could live with himself. The infamous episode “In the Pale Moonlight” is often considered either the best or the worst episode in all of Star Trek, due to this.

The aforementioned Dominion War story arc that took up the later seasons also proved to be a triumph of storytelling. There were episodes that truly showed war to be hellish and the consequences to be long lasting, and this mention of darker content wouldn’t do well without mentioning the fact that the series also took a darker look at the Federation. For the first time, we got to see that some consider the Federation to be just as bad as some of the people they fight, albeit these comments tended to come from those who had betrayed the federations.

Characters like Doctorm Bashir, Odo, Chief O’Brien, Major Kira and more showed that this was a series willing to tackle deeper subject matter. Odo faces discrimination t times due to his species and Kira is a former terrorist ( this definitely would have been different if made post 9/11). the infamous O’Brien must suffer episodes are some of the most well known, and Doctor Bashir was forced into situations he wouldn’t have anticipated.

The show was not without humor though and the lighter episodes were extremely welcome. These often involved the Ferengi and did a great job, as a I said before, of expanding them as a people. If I can sum up Deep Space Nine in one word, it would be “growth”. This was a series where the characters grew, but so did Star Trek as a franchise. So Happy 25th anniversary Deep Space Nine, you were amazing!

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  1. umbrarchistNo Gravatar says:

    The best Trek by imitating Babylon 5. LOL

    So we got 2 good shows.

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