Season Two of Deep Space Nine has begun and it starts out with a doozy. Legends return and the crew get a shakeup in the episode that originally aired on September 26, 1993. This is The Homecoming.
Also, be sure to check out the updates on the DS9 Documentary ‘What We Left Behind’ here!
Station Log Stardate undetermined. (man Sisko is bad at keeping logs): The Homecoming
After the intense ending of season One the crew face a whole new challenge. After receiving an earring from a passing traitor, Kira sets off the search for a Bajoran war hero who was thought lost during the Cardassian occupation. The results of the search result in nothing that anyone expected.
Quark receives a Bajoran earring from a passing traitor who claims that she got it on Cardassia IV. Taking it to Kira, she immediately recognizes it as the earring of Li Nalas, one of the Bajoran Resistance leaders who was presumed dead. Asking for a runabout to rescue him, Kira explains that Bajor is in trouble and needs a new leader in the absence of Kai Opaka. He agrees to think about it, but only after getting more information. Just as they begin to discuss further, Sisko is summoned to one of the habitat rings where Odo and O’Brien have discovered the symbol of the Alliance for Global Unity or ‘The Circle’. This indicates that the Xenophobic Bajoran group has made their way onto the station touting Bajor for Bajorans. This can not be a good sign.
Sisko confides in Jadzia about his concerns with how things are going on with Bajor. She informs him that he needs to give Kira the runabout and let her find and save the missing war hero. If he happens to be there, this will not only help Bajor but force Cardassia to admit they kept prisoners after the occupation. O’Brien volunteers to accompany Kira on her mission despite her protests. This could be a one way mission and Kira knows that if they don’t bring back Li Nalas, they may not come back at all.
Arriving at Cardassian IV, Kira and O’Brien discover that there are more Bajoran workers than they believed. Posing as a prostitute and her pimp to gain access, Kira and O’Brien visit the base and begin their rescue. Kira finds Li and, after a firefight, takes Li and several others back to the safety of Deep Space Nine. Upon arrival, Kira finds Sisko in a conversation over subspace with Gul Dukat. Dukat is delivering a formal apology to Bajor claiming to have no previous knowledge of the Bajoran Labor Camp on Cardassia IV. This is clearly a long game for the Cardassians but what they want is a mystery.
After being cleaned up and briefed on the changes that have occurred, Li Nalas is given a tour through the station by Ben Sisko. It isn’t long before Li is recognized by the inhabitants of the station and soon Minister Jaro arrives to greet Li on behalf of the Bajoran Provisional Government. Upon arrival, they find Li Nalas talking to the Bajoran people, Minister Jaro takes the opportunity to speak to the crowd himself.
That evening Quark is assaulted in his bar after hours, finding himself the latest victim of The Circle, branding him with their logo. Kira explains to Li that The Circle is an extremist group that wants to rid Bajor of all non-Bajorans. It seems that this group is becoming a larger influence and is gaining more popularity than the government itself. Later that evening, Li is caught trying to escape DS9 and his newfound popularity by stowing away aboard a ship headed for the Gamma Quadrant.
Sisko retrieves him and learns the truth about Li Nalas. Li is not the hero he is made out to be. The famous battle he is known for was all an accident and Li’s legend was spun out of control much to Li’s dismay. He does not see himself as a leader but only as a slave to his reputation. Sisko disagrees. Sisko tells him that, while he is not the man Bajor believes he is, Li is the Legend Bajor needs. This is a man who can help his own people by being a symbol for Bajor. Li reluctantly agrees to remain aboard the station.
The next morning Sisko and Kira learn that the newly appointed Navarch Li has been appointed the new liaison officer to DS9 with Major Kira having been recalled to Bajor.
to be continued…
Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:
WHAT?! The premier of the season and it is a cliffhanger? That was my initial response the first time I saw this episode but man did it make me want to come back for more. Surely this wasn’t the end of Kira Nerys aboard the station, we’d only just gotten to know her. Sure it is pretty common to shake things up for a second season on any series…Dr. Pulaski anyone?… but surely they would not get rid of such a powerful character like Kira!
Of course they don’t but we had no idea that was the case, we only knew that we had to wait a week before finding out what happened in the conclusion. So of course, we had to come back for more!
The episode itself is a very strong one, really diving into the political nature of the series. Bajor is having some serious issues and with the discovery of a Legend, it goes without saying that one or more politician is going to jump on the opportunity to use this guy for their own personal gain. Enter Minister Jaro (played by the amazing Frank Langella in an uncredited role), Minister Jaro is one who is ready to jump on any opportunity and this certainly is one. At this point we really don’t know much about Jaro or his allegiances but we assume that he is an ally of the Provisional Government and not a member of The Circle…only time will tell.
We could dive in more but since this is only the first part much of it would be speculation so let’s move on shall we?
Gleanings and Cool Bits:
Jake sets up a date with a ‘cute Bajoran girl’ only to be rejected when her father tells her she can’t date non-Bajorans. This is a pretty powerful moment as this is something that has happened a little closer to home as in, on Earth itself. It is not uncommon for people to show this kind of hatred and bigotry toward others and it is a subtle yet important story thread through this series. Even though the future is a more enlightened place, there are things that occasional rear their ugly heads.
We see the Baseball Buck Bokai gave to Sisko in this episode. It seems that he hasn’t gotten rid of it yet!
So The Circle found a can of Spray Paint to make the hallway? huh, I wonder if Krylon has a factory nearby on Bajor or was that just something they replicated.
New Rule of Acquisition revealed:
Number 76: Every once in a while declare peace, it confuses the hell out of your enemies.
Thanks for reading the Retro TV Review, I look forward to discussing the rest of the series with you, one episode at a time every Monday, Wednesday and Friday! Next Review: The Circle
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Late To The Game 1/16/2021 (Originally published 4/10/2019)
Special Thanks to Memory Alpha as they are one of the best sources for details on Star Trek information available. Although I have a pretty deep knowledge on the subject, they have proven invaluable as a regular resource.
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