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DS9 3-26

DS9 3x26
"The Adversary"

Original airdate: 6/19/1995
Rewatch date: 8/19/2013


A Changeling infiltrator hijacks the Defiant in the hopes of starting a Federation war, and it is up to the crew to weed him out and stop him.

Spoiler-free notes:

Sisko is finally a captain!

Who or what are the Tzenkethi?

The scene that ousts the Changeling and the scene in which everyone assembles to take blood samples are reminiscent of the famous blood test scene in John Carpenter's The Thing, and it's hardly the only parallel.

The CG during the climax is pretty disappointing.

Now we know that a Changeling can be killed.

This is a natural evolution of the idea that Changelings have infiltrated the Alpha Quadrant and can appear as anyone. It's also a natural answer to the question of what happens when you have to fight one. I dig the dark, paranoid, horror movie vibe and the narratively logical time limit, and I absolutely love how it sets up the possibilities for Season 4: "You're too late. We are everywhere."



Final Thoughts, Season 3:

Best Episodes: "The Search," "Defiant," "Improbable Cause"/"The Die is Cast"

Worst Episodes: "Meridian," "Fascination," "Life Support"

Season 3 is easily DS9's weakest season. Going into it, DS9 had a lot of promise to increase the sci-fi drama and action with the reveal of the Dominion. However, at the time, the show was also struggling to answer flailing ratings and the vocal annoyance of many Trekkies who felt that the show was too different from TOS and TNG. The season definitely embraces a more melodramatic and methodical tone--getting downright soapy with the relationships--but it also tries to pull off the kinds of stories that worked well in previous Star Treks. Alas, Season 3 is at its strongest when it's not doing either, when it focuses on the big picture politics and the interpersonal conflicts. The Dominion storyline certainly seems to be getting bigger and bigger--which will hopefully pull the show from the brink of mediocrity--but in the short-term, the writers really need to step up their game and find a way to mix it up a bit.





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