Escalating from the semi-cliffhanger of a season finale, DS9 opens with a bang, new ship, new crewmen and a new enemy. All this and more in the season three premiere that originally aired on September 26, 1994, The Search Part I.
Station Log Stardate 48212.4 The Search Part I
After getting a bloody nose from the Jam’Hadar in the season two Finale, Ben Sisko and crew are preparing for the inevitable attack by the Dominion. Ben Sisko, with Starfleet support behind him, leads a new ship into the Gamma Quadrant to find the Founders.
In Ops, Kira and her team determine that it is hopeless to defeat the Dominion should they invade, every test they have run shows a tremendous failure. Soon alarms go off indicating a cloaked ship nearby setting the station into red alert. The ship de-cloaks revealing a brand new Federation Starship captained by Ben Sisko himself, only this one has a cloaking device.
Commander Sisko explains that this new ship, The Defiant, was designed to fight the Borg five years earlier but was put in mothballs due to it being overpowered to the point of nearly damaging itself. Starfleet provided the ship to Sisko and his crew to seek out the Dominion so that they can determine the strength of their military. Sisko introduces two new visitors, Lt Commander Michael Eddington and Romulan Sub Commander T’Rul. It is clear Sub Commander T’Rul is only there on orders to keep the cloaking device secure but Eddington is there on behalf of Starfleet Security much to Odo’s chagrin.
Odo immediately informs Sisko that he reluctantly accepts being relieved of duty but Sisko pushes back. He informs Odo that while the Shapeshifter will be in charge of Station Security while Eddington will be in charge of Starfleet security matters. Odo is clearly upset and informs the Commander that he will be resigning immediately.
Kira later informs Odo that the Bajoran government has requested Odo to join the mission into the Gamma Quadrant in order to assist in the search for the Dominion. He appreciates the offer and, although initially declining, shows he may have a change of heart.
Later, Sisko surprises Quark by requesting the Ferengi bartender join them on their mission into the Gamma Quadrant. When Quark refuses, Sisko reveals that he had spoken to Grand Nagus Zek and shows him proof by showing Quark the Nagus’ cane. Quark can not refuse.
With only one night before launch and their crew together, Sisko and Dax discuss the mission in detail. It appears that their odds are slim in defeating the Dominion but Sisko knows he has to try. He will not let Bajor fall at the hands of an invading force and must act on his duty. The next morning, The Defiant heads into the wormhole and on to the Gamma Quadrant, with everyone on board including Odo and Quark, who soon discover they have to room together.
Before long they encounter several Jem’Hadar ships who seem to detect them through the cloaking device. Soon it seems that, with some modifications, the Defiant is invisible to the Jem’Hadar but only when not fully powered and at warp. Knowing this, they head on to the Karemma who have been working with the Ferengi in a deal involving Tulaberry Wine. The Karemma are their only connection to the Dominion and they soon learn that they report to the Vorta who in turn report to the Founders. After some negotiation, Karemma first minister Ornithar shows them a map to the Omarion Nebula, a place that Odo seems to recognize. Quark stays behind with the Karemma, planning to return to the station on the next ship heading home.
Heading into the Omarion Nebula, Dax and O’Brien beam down to the surface of Callinon VII where they find a subspace relay station. Although they manage to get into the system and are able to transmit data to the Defiant, the two soon find themselves trapped with the Jem’Hadar heading toward the ship. With the choice being between the crew and their two crew-members, Sisko must abandon Dax and O’Brien to fend for themselves. Using the coordinates Dax transmitted, they head to find the founders.
After getting rebuffed by Odo, Sisko send Kira to talk with him. Odo indicates that he needs to go to the Omarion Nebula as it is calling to him for some unknown reason. He is desperate to leave for the Nebula and demands to be allowed to go. Suddenly, even though cloaked, the Defiant is attacked by the Jem’Hadar. Ben Sisko takes the weapons array and destroys one of the ships buying them time to get warp power back online. As the attack gets worse with Jem’Hadar warriors invading the ship, Odo pulls an unconscious Kira onto a shuttle-craft and flees.
Kira soon awakes on the shuttle with Odo and he explains that he does not know what happened to the rest of the crew. When she finds out that he has taken them to the Omarion Nebula, she is furious but agrees to join him on the surface when they find a planet in the Nebula, a planet he feels drawn to.
Upon landing, he finds that this planet is his home and he is reunited with his people.
…to be continued.
Is this a ‘Good’ Episode:
The Federation, ignoring the warning from the Dominion, decide to go ahead and invade someone’s space because they want to explore. Sure, Sisko makes a fine point of being on the offensive rather than the defensive but seriously, collapse that damned wormhole and start preparing for the Dominion to eventually arrive the long way around. I mean, yeah that would eliminate five seasons of Star Trek in one fell swoop but seriously, that was the better choice. That being said, this was one of the coolest openings to a new season, hands down. Not only did we get new communicators and a new ship, we also got to meet Odo’s people. Now the question is…who are they and what do they want? (I mean I know, but I don’t want to spoil anything. heh.)
There is a slight problem here though. Odo makes the statement that ‘ever since entering the gamma quadrant’ he has felt a pull to somewhere on that side of the wormhole. The issue is, he has entered the gamma quadrant more than once these past few seasons and never once mentioned or acted like he was being pulled anywhere. For him to suddenly have a pull is odd at best. Sure it became clearer when he saw the map with the Omarion Nebula but that pull, yeah totally new.
All in all, great intro to the start of a new story arc. Come back in a few days for Part II!
Gleanings and Cool Bits:
Man, there is a lot going on in this premiere episode of season three. First off, did you notice the small change in the uniforms? Yep, the comm badge has been altered to look like the one that they use on Star Trek Voyager, creating a little continuity between the two series. Pretty cool huh?
Beyond that little bit, we get our first look at one of the coolest ships in Starfleet, the USS Defiant. While it may look like the Defiant didn’t last long, I can assure you this is not the last we will see of this intrepid little ship.
While we don’t see much of Eddington and Sub Commander T’Rul, they will be back.
In addition to the new badges did you notice the significant change in Odo’s uniform. Yep, he is wearing the same uniform his mirror universe counterpart wore in Crossover. Could this really be the mirror universe Odo? Nah, the actor just really liked the costume, but damn would that have made some cool fan-fiction.
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 Search Part II
If you would like to read more reviews I have a weekly series called Key Movies Of My Life that comes out every Thursday and for more retro TV goodness check out the rest of the Retro TV Reviews here.
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Late To The Game 4/17/2021 (Originally published 6/10/2019)
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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