While waiting for the election results to come in (thankfully we finally have the better ending as of today! Congratulations President-elect Biden and Vice-President-elect Harris!) this was the episode I watched to help deal with the stress and anxiety as I’d never had seen it before. This is an amazing episode of “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.” The full use of the ensemble cast is on display and so many characters have fantastic arcs that reveal the different facets of who they are. Suffice to say, this is one I highly recommend. It is a favorite and captures so much of why “Deep Space Nine” is my favorite of the Treks.
“Facets” was directed by Cliff Bole and written by René Echevarria.
The story follows Nog as he trains for the test get get into Starfleet Academy and Jazdia when she gathers Odo, Kira, Chief O’Brien, Leeta, Bashir, Commander Sisko and Quark to perform the Zhian’tara Ritual where they will carry one of her past hosts so she can speak to them.
Nog and the Academy Test – The B-plot of this story involves Nog training for the Academy exam. It is cool seeing this as it shows that even though he got the recommendation from Commander Sisko in “Heart of Stone” his journey to Starfleet is far from over. This detail and how perfectionist and devoted and passionate he is to his goal is amazing and Aron Eisenberg owns it. R.I.P. Aron. You were amazing.
Rom stands up to Quark – This is also a strong Rom episode such as when learns Quark hacked the holosuite test so Nog will fail and his nephew will stay with the bar. Nog finds out and threatens Quark that he will burn the Bar if Quark ever hurts Nog again. It is powerful and he loves Nog so much. An early scene shows that Rom bought Nog a cadet uniform (even though Nog can’t wear until he’s actually in the Academy).
The Zhian’tara Ritual – The A-plot follows Jazdia as she finally performs the Zhian’tara ritual. This ritual is a big deal to Trill and the Guardian comes to the station since she never chose to come back to Trill for it. This is powerful as her friends inhabit different aspects of herself. Kira is the Stateswoman Lela, Miles is the nervous scientist Tobin, Leela is the gymnast Emony, Quark the mother Audrid, Bashir the hedonist Torias with Commander Sisko as the murder Joran and Quark as her mentor Odo. Each embody a facet of herself or the other that is revealed over the course of the ritual.
Quark – Quark shows selflessness in the act when he portrays someone he thinks never a would (a mom Audrid) but we see his protectiveness of Nog his nephew when he sabotages the test as he believes he is doing it to protect him. This selfish/selfless dichotomy to Quark makes him dynamic this episode.
Joran and Jazdia – Joran is the past host who was a murder and he is there to put doubt into Jazdia’s mind. It is powerful that it is her best friend Sisko being him too as eventually they have to fight when Joran tries to kill her. He get’s into her head and it shows how the Joran side of herself still haunts her as the doubt carries through the episode.
Odo and Curzon – Odo and Curzon decide to become one being during the ritual as Odo finally feels passion and experiences the senses of a solid and Curzon is basically immortal and can continue having fun with his old friend Commander Sisko. I loved how Rene portrays them as we see the arrogance, ego and trollish nature of Curzon (along with his guilt) combined with Odo’s detachment. In the end they both grow from the experience as Curzon felt Joy at being a changeling and Odo felt joy in the sensations of a solid. You can see how this experience helps him grow into the person he becomes later. R.I.P. Rene.
Curzon and Jazdia – The main relationship drama is that between Curzon and Jazdia and Curzon lies and says he felt bad for Jazdia and that is why he admitted her after she “washed out” of the symbiont process. It was all a lie because he was attracted to her and Jazdia helps him face that guilt and forgive himself as once again they become one Jazdia Dax and Curzon finally gives up his ego and identity in the new being he has become with Odo. I loved this arc and it showed how wise and compassionate Jazdia is. She really is an amazing character.
Could Have Been a Two-Parter – My only issue is I wish there had been more exploration of the other hosts, especially the threat of Joran. For this reason the episode would have been made stronger as a two-parter. We also never saw Nog do the test, which could have been added with more time. For this reason the episode feels rushed when it is trying to do so much. It needed more time and it not having that more time hurts the presentation of the story.
This is one of my favorite episodes and it endears Jazdia so much to me. This is an episode about accepting the different facets of yourself and we see Curzon, Nog, Odo and Jazdia all do this at different times. People are complicated and the complicatedness is something “Deep Space Nine” has always thrived on and done so well. Definitely check this episode out. It is a favorite.
Final Score: 9.2 / 10 Should have been a two-parter.