Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1994) – Tribunal, and The Jem’Hadar

Station log: stardate 47944.2

Avery Brooks directs this episode from a story by Bill Dial that sees O’Brien (Colm Meaney) stuck in a Kafka-esque nightmare when he seized and arrested by the Cardassians, purportedly for working with The Maquis.

Charged with an unknown crime, all we know from past experience is that Cardassians courts, are show-room trials at best, the verdict has already been decided, and O’Brien is guilty.

Poor guy, all he wanted was a bit of vacation with Keiko (Rosalind Chao), but an old ‘friend’ who works with The Maquis just set him up.

Back on the station, Odo (Rene Auberjonois) and the rest dig into the case to find out what is going on, and the Security Chief is able to join O’Brien, even as the guilty verdict, and summary execution are readied.

As Odo butts heads with the judge and lawyers, he attempts to prove O’Brien’s innocence while the station crew continue to delve into and gather evidence and discovers the real culprit, an old crew mate of O’Brien’s, Raymond Boone (John Beck).

I rather enjoy this episode, Brooks turns in a fantastic story, and Meaney gives a strong performance that may be one of his best in the series.

The look at Cardassians and their homeworld of Cardassia Prime continues to layer out the universe. And that is a good thing, because with this episode, Deep Space Nine was the only Star Trek on television.

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Station log: stardate unknown

Written by Ira Steven Behr, this episode closes out the second season, and introduces what is to come for the Trek-verse.

If the Klingons were the definable aliens of The Original Series, the Borg for the Next Generation, then the Jem’Hadar and the Dominion are that for DS9.

Sisko (Brooks), Jake (Cirroc Lofton), and Nog (Aron Eisenberg) along with Quark (Armin Shimerman) are off to the Gamma Quadrant for the young boys to work on their science project.

On the other side of the wormhole, the group encounter the foot soldiers of the Dominion, the dangerous Jem’Hadar, asn the pursue a Vorta female, a telepath named Eris (Molly Hagan). The group is captured, but this is only the opening move of something bigger, and more dangerous to come.

And when they launch an assault when Starfleet comes through the wormhole (to investigate and rescue the captured Sisko and Quark) they prove very quickly that they pose a serious threat to the Federation when they ably destroy a galaxy class starship (just like the Enterprise), the U.S.S. Odyssey.

The Dominion is going to be a dangerous threat to the station and the Trek-verse as a whole. I can’t wait to see what happens!

Next week, the Human Adventure continues as I dive into Season Three of the series, which is now available in a Complete Series set from Paramount Pictures.

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