Star Trek: Deep Space Nine – Season 1, Episode 8 – “Dax” – An Exploration of Jazdia and Curzon

      “Dax” is a great exploration of the characters of both Curzon and Jazdia while also exploring Trill culture and giving us a solid mystery in which the plot takes place. This is an episode I’d recommend to any “Deep Space Nine” or Jazdia fans as it does a great job illuminating a lot of the strengths of the series and Jazdia as a character. I was drawn in throughout the entire mystery.

The episode was directed by David Carson with Teleplay by D.C. Fontana and Peter Allan Fields who also wrote the story.

The story follows Jazdia when is accused for murder and treason that were crimes supposedly committed by Dax’s past host Curzon.

SPOILERS ahead

The Pros:

The Politics – The politics of this episode are fascinating. We have the Klaestron’s who are seeking justice for their murdered war hero whom the top suspect is Curzon Dax. This makes things complicated as the Federation has a treaty of extrication with the Klaestrons so must honor it but get around the treaty by Deep Space Nine also belonging to Bajor which leads to a Bajoran Arbiter being called to see if Jazdia must go with Klaestrons to to be punished for Curzon’s supposed crimes.

Arbiter Els Renora – Els Renora is a 100 year old Bajoran woman who doesn’t have time for your bs. She is a fantastic character who keeps the trial on track the entire time as the nature of what it means to be Trill, Jazdia and Curzon is explored. She demonstrates patience and Anne Haney did a wonderful job.

The Trill – In this episode we see how Trill society works as each new host must achieve so much before the Dax symbiont and the prior host find them worthy to carry on.

Curzon, Jazdia and Sisko – During the ruling one of the best scenes is when Sisko recounts how Curzon made him the man he is today. He was his mentor and friend and helped him develop his sense of honor. It is a powerful scene and seeing Jazdia recount his memories to Sisko give depth to new friendship that they are developing. In the episode we see how brilliant Jazdia is as she got all her degrees in science before being found worthy to carry on the Dax symbionte but we also see how closely she holds Curzon’s memory and how they are a part of her.

Curzon and Jazdia’s Sacrifice – In the end we learn that the General was the one who betrayed his people to the rebels and died in the process. His wife was having an affair with Curzon and Curzon kept the secret of the General’s betrayal so that there would be stability in the government and to honor the general’s wife. It is powerful hearing Jazdia recount this to Enina, the general’s wife who had saved Jazdia from her son who had embraced the lie and was ready to kill an innocent person for the crimes he believed happened. Jazdia like Curzon was ready to die for Klaestron. It fit both their characters really well.

The Cons:

Dr. Bashir – Julian Bashir is once again an early season creep. Jazdia tells him “no” and he comes anyway and this after his awful pick-up line. I’m so glad Bashir grows out of this because he is easily one of the least likable characters in season 1.

This is an episode that would be a favorite if not for Bashir’s creepy antics. We learn so much about Curzon and see the person who Jazdia is through her choices as well as getting a wonderful glimpse into Trill culture. I think “Deep Space Nine” probably has the best first season as it covered politics, religion and explored the amazing characters who made up the ensemble cast early. There is a reason it is my favorite of all the “Star Treks.”

Final Score: 9 / 10 This was a solidly great episode.

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