The 2nd season, where The Next Generation and Voyager still have uneven seasons, Deep Space Nine already begins to outgrow the mediocrity. Yes, there still are episodes which are okay at best, a weaker one here and there but on the whole DS9’s 2nd season already is, in my humble opinion, much stronger than the TNG’s or Voyager 2nd season, although, I have to admit I currently am enjoying the 2nd season rewatch of Voyager! It does have a few more weaker episodes though. Still Garak is there for only 4 episodes this season! In the 1st season who was only in 1 episode, so there is some progress! Gul Dukat is there for no more than 5 episodes.


The season starts with a premiere, I believe at that time, in the fall of 1993, it hadn’t been done before, a 3-parter, let alone a season-opener 3-parter: “Homecoming / The Siege / The Circle”. Not only it was a premiere, it also was a very exciting 3-parter about the Bajor. These are troubling times on Bajor, unrest, there is a movement, called the Circle, who wants to change things, who wants the Federation gone. Minister Jaro seems like a honorable man but it soon becomes clear that he is the head of the Circle and in league with Vedek Winn. A skeleton crew of the Federation hides on the station to try and fight back. Note – Very exciting episodes, it feels like a TV movie!

After these 3 exciting episodes, it is difficult apparently to keep up the entertainment quality for the next episode, “Invasive Procedures” with some interesting guest stars: Tim Russ; John Glover; Megan Gallagher & Steve Rankin. Verad believes he has the right to the Dax symbiont and goes out of his way to get it. Quark is responsible for them getting on board. Note - I think Quark should have been punished more severe, could have become a little personal story-arc. However the next episode is another solid one, “Cardassians”, which stars Andrew J Robinson as Garak. A young Cardassian boy has been adopted by Bajorans. It involves a political game where Dukat tries to embarrass a high placed Cardassian government official. Note – very interesting episode, lots of Garak which is always good. I did not agree though with the way Sisko rules in the end of the future of Rugal. “Melora” is an okay episode, a love story for Bashir, well almost. Melora has a special gravity-based disability he can “cure” her but that would mean she could never again go home for long periods of time. B-story is a Quark story, when Fallit Kot visits the station he intends to kill Quark.


“Rules of Acquisition” is a typical Ferengi episode, kinda fun, nothing special but this is the first time the Dominion is mentioned! Quark has a new employee, but what he doesn’t know is that she is a female and she is infatuated with Quark. Rom is jealous and finds out her true gender! “Necessary Evil” is another solid episode where we go back to a time during the occupation, where Dukat asks Odo to investigate a murder which has been taken place on the station. Odo also has to investigate Kira who was on the station at that time. The story goes back and forth to the past and present time. Note – Best episode since “Cardassians”. In “Second Sight” commander Sisko is infatuated with a visitor on the station. Strange thing is, the visitor seems to disappear into thin air every time. Meanwhile scientist Gideon Seyetik is preparing for an ambitious project, re-igniting a star. Note – An okay episode, I like it mainly because the character Gideon Seyetik (Richard Kiley), who was full of himself, but he played it in a funny way.

“Sanctuary”, for me, is one of the weakest episodes of the 2nd season. The Skrreeans, escape from the Gamma Quadrant through the wormhole. The Skrreeans have been oppressed by T-Rogorans, who were conquered by the Dominion and they are looking for a planet called Kentanna. When their leader Haneek is convinced that Bajor is Kentanna, she finds the Bajoran people feel very different about that. The command staff finds another planet for them, but Haneek cannot forgive Kira. The ungrateful B*tch. Note – 2nd time the Dominion is mentioned! “Rivals” is next and unfortunately is not much better than “Sanctuary”. Quark gets competition in the station when a rival opens a casino on the station which hurts Quarks profits immensely. Note – As always, Quark (Armin Shimerman) is so much fun, he steals every scene he is in but otherwise a boring episode.


“The Alternate” is another entertaining episode where we meet Dr. Mora Pol, he visits the station, he actually comes for Odo. Dr. Pol was Odo’s first contact, a bit of a father-like. Odo still is not happy with the way the scientist treated him. Note - Very good Odo episode, some good scenes between Odo and Mora Pol. Short scene with Quark with both of them is also nice. Sisko tells Odo about his father. He does not say he died but as a viewer you could interpret that. Obviously he is not dead since he becomes a recurring character. “Armageddon Game” is a favorite of mine: The Chief and Bashir help the T'Lani and the Kelleruns, destroy their weapons so that they never can go to war again with these weapons. However they need to kill everybody so that no one can recreate these weapons. Miles and Bashir escape but Chief is infected. The crew of the station is told that both men died. But when Keiko sees the final moments of the video on which everyone disappears, she sees Miles drinking coffee in the afternoon! She is convinced this is a forgery because Miles never drinks coffee in the afternoon! So funny that this is the reason why Sisko starts an investigation while at the end Miles says he regularly drinks coffee in the afternoon! Note - Some good Bashir-O’Brien scenes in this episode, starting to bond more and more.

“Whispers” is definitely one of my favorite season two episodes. It revolves around Miles O’Brien. He just escapes the station and tells the viewer via his station log what has happened the last couple of days. In his log he tells what happened. Deep Space Nine was supposed to host peace talks between the Paradans and a rebel faction and O'Brien was supposed to make sure the security to be top notch. Everybody, except for Jake is acting strange around him, his wife Keiko, his daughter, his colleagues. When Odo returns from a business trip, Miles think he has found an ally but this only is for a little while. Turns out, most of the 45 minutes we weren’t watching our Miles O’Brien but a replica, created by the Rebel Faction. “Paradise” is a solid, but at times also an annoying episode. Ben Sisko and Miles O’Brien find a group humans on a planet who have been crashed there some time ago. However, as soon as they transport to the planet, their technology no longer works. Alixus (Gail Strickland) is the leader of the group and is determent to add Ben and Miles to their group, because they need the workers. When they don’t do as she wants, because Miles and Ben want to get of this planet, Ben gets locked up. Note – This Alixus woman is hugely annoying, she really brings up feelings of hate towards her. I don’t understand why do Ben and Miles stay there, they could have gone their own way and find a way of the planet.


“Shadow Play” is an Odo episode where Odo and Dax investigate the mysterious disappearance of people from a village. While Odo is away from the station Quark thinks he has free reigns but Kira lets him know that she will keep an eye on him, even though Quark arranges Bareil to visit the station. It is an okay episode, if nothing else, in this episode the Dominion is mentioned for the 3rd time this season. What is also important is that Jake tells his father that he doesn’t want to join Starfleet. “Playing God” is also a just above average episode where Dax is to initiate a new Trill, has to judge if he is ready to become a host in the near future. This young man is not fond of the fact that a Dax is to be his teacher because Dax is the one who has failed the most initiates. In this episode we learn that Curzon Dax first failed Jadzia but when she re-applied, he did not object. Note - Jake has a dabo girl as a girlfriend, and we witness some really nice banter between Quark and Kira.


“Profit and Loss” is actually a very entertaining episode where we meet a former lover of Quark, a Cardassian woman named Natima Lang. She brings with him 2 students but these “students” are wanted by the Cardassian Government. Quark is ready to give up everything as long as he can be with her again. Garak knows who these students are and notifies Central Command. For a moment it looks like Garak can find his way back to Cardassia. Note – Very good episode, title always makes my mind fuzzy because it seems a real Ferengi episode title, but it is not. “Blood Oath” is the first real DS9 Klingon episode and quite entertaining if you ask me. We see the return of 3 Klingon warriors from the original series: Kor, Koloth and Kang. They seek revenge on the Albino for killing their offspring. Dax made a blood oath promise as Curzon to them and intends to honor it! Note - Terry Farrel does a good job here, nice to see these 3 actors back, a tribute!

“The Maquis” two-parter tells us more about the Federation citizens who decided to stay on the Cardassian side of the border. But the Cardassians want them gone and they go far to chase them off and the Federation does nothing to help them. This is in a nutshell what gave birth to the Maquis. Sisko has to take it up against a dear friend, Calvin Hudson, who is on the side of the Maquis. Ben Sisko really has a hard time understanding the reasoning of Cal Hudson. When the Maquis kidnap Dukat from the station, Sisko goes after them to get him back. Sisko aims for the best possible scenario: preventing a war, freeing Dukat and offering Hudson the possibility to return. “The Wire” is (also) one of my favorite episodes this season. It is a Garak episode, he has having severe headaches but he refuses to let Bashir examine him. This is because he knows where these headaches are coming from and Bashir wouldn’t be able to help him. It appears he has a device in his head which was meant for not to feel any pain when tortured. The device could be used as a sort feel-good drug. But now it is broken. Bashir decides to visit Tain to ask for his help, he acts like he does not care although he gives him the information Bashir needs. “Crossover” is DS9’s first crossover episode to the alternate universe. It is a fun episode, we see characters acting differently then we are used to. Seeing the deaths of a few important characters in this alternate universe episode, it is possible that they were not planning on bringing these alternate universe stories back after this one.


DS9’s 2nd season goes out strong! Last 8 episodes are solid stories, exciting stories and although not all action oriented, they are all stories with much rewatch value. “The Collaborator” is also a very strong episode where we see the return of Vedek Winn and Vedek Bareil. Elections for a new Kai are in a few days, Winn comes to the station, Bareil is also there, because he now is in a relationship with Kira. When a collaborator has been discovered on the station, Winn takes an interest, he tells her that Bareil possible is a collaborator himself! Bareil however, is protecting Kai Opaka, her son was in that regiment that was killed after someone gave them away. But it was Opaka herself because it meant 42 lives lost where otherwise 1200 Bajoran lives would be lost. Bareil has revoked his candidacy and Winn becomes the new Kai. Note – Such a good episode, Louise Fletcher as Winn Adami is so good, you just hate to love her and love to hate her!

Also very entertaining is the next to last season two episode “The Tribunal” where Miles O’Brien is being arrested after he was supposedly bringing weapons to the Maquis. This is such a great story where we get a better look at the Cardassian Justice system where one is found guilty before the trial and the trial is nothing more than a show. Note – In my opinion, this one and “The Collaborator” are two very strong episodes, really well told stories, well-acted and so entertaining! It is not like these are BIG episodes but it is about something, good drama.


The season finale, “The Jem’Hadar” finally shows a bit more of the Dominion, I’d say, a lot more! The episode starts out a bit funny where Sisko expect to have a few days alone with his son but Nog and Quark are going with them. It continues to be small, funny for a time but suddenly we meet the Jem’Hadar and get captured by them. They let Sisko know that the Dominion will no longer tolerate the Federation coming through the wormhole to their territory. Note – A great season finale, built up well, first a bit humor, some annoying (in a good way) Quark scenes and suddenly the Jem’Hadar are in their face. Their escape is also planned by the Jem’Hadar, but Quark, who saves Sisko by the way, also learns something more from their companion they brought with them, Eris (Molly Hagan). She was meant to be a spy for the Dominion. Also some funny Jake / Nog scenes in the forrest and on the runabout! What I am realizing now, even though I already know this, while watching these first two seasons, is that Armin Shimerman’s character Quark NEVER let’s the viewer down. Even in the weaker episodes, Quark still manages to be at his very best, every time!


Final Word:

This was season two, a very entertaining season! “Sanctuary” and “Rivals” were the weakest episodes in my opinion but still they aren’t awful, they are watchable, even after so many rewatches. There are 3 or 4 just above average episodes but other than that this was a solid season, in my opinion (way) better than TNG’s or Voyager’s 2nd season. I am so happy that with the 90’s Trek and Enterprise we got 20+ episodes instead of the mere 10 episodes a season we get with Strange New Worlds or Picard. With 26 episodes a season you don’t mind a dud here and there, but with 10 episodes, well they all have to be near perfect and that is always difficult to do. Cannot wait for season 3, another 26 episodes to enjoy my all-time favorite Star Trek!

Screencaps: TrekCore.com

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