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Season Six:
-530: "Sacrifice of Angels"
-535: "Waltz"
-541: "Wrongs Darker Than Death or Night"
-545: "The Reckoning"
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Wrongs Darker Than Death or Night

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Season Six (1997-1998):

26 episodes @ 43 minutes each.
Get your copy of this 7-disc DVD set from the links below:
Region 1, NTSC, U.S.
Region 1, NTSC, Canada
Region 2, PAL, U.K. (regular)
Region 2, PAL, U.K. (Slimline Edition)

Wrongs Darker Than Death or Night

(Star Trek - Deep Space Nine episode production code 541)
written by Ira Steven Behr & Hans Beimler

Preston Nichols of the Montauk phase of the Philadelphia Experiment says in one of his interviews that he is often approached by people who believe his stories and want to know how to build a time machine for themselves. He usually turns them down, citing that their reasons for wanting to travel through time are usually not very noble or well-informed.

Something very similar is on display in this episode with Major Kira's quest to wallow in the past. I would draw attention to three directions she takes that are the opposite of ideal.

The first will be almost of second nature to today's internet savvy society. When you get spam, the best response is to ignore and delete. Major Kira's world is all peachy until she gives a piece of junk mail her full attention. Although Gul Dukat seemed to be on a redeeming path to bettering himself along with all the other castmembers in season four, the writers have since totally trashed his character to the point where the DS9 regulars shouldn't even bother tolerating his messages. If you want to keep him on the line to trace his whereabouts, fine, but hit the mute button, and laugh at his face in his face. Take away his power to control the conversation and stir up emotional hooks to manipulate the situation, and give that power back to yourself. Kira fails that task.

The second difficulty Kira has is the fourth density idea of staying in the moment. I kept waiting for Dukat to drop the bombshell that her mother was still alive, to trigger actions that needed to be taken now during the current adventure. But the mother was still long dead. So what's changed? If Kira was confident in her own identity in the present, there should be nothing left to do with this new information, true or not. There really are no present time stakes defined in this story other than Kira's inner personal beliefs, and the best solutions there will always lie in the present moment.

The third problem has an official scientific name: "The Heisenberg Principle". If we accept that Kira's purpose in this adventure is to find out exactly what happened to her own mother in the past that she herself sprang from, it doesn't make sense to jump back into that past and become an active player. Heisenberg said that the very act of observing can change (or taint) the result, which is a subtle thing on the quantum level. Kira's influence is anything but subtle here. After going back and meddling and creating something that could be very different to what actually happened to her own mother, in effect observing her mother's double in a universe that branched off of whatever one the Prophets decided to dump Kira in, a universe that Kira was co-creating out of her own decisions triggered by Dukat's taunting, how can you trust that those were the same events that happened in the past on the timeline you were on previously? I'd say Kira's investigation was tainted by her involvement, and not very clearheaded. She would have done better staying in the present, researching records and interviewing people who were there to get a more accurate picture.

A separate concern is the way that Sisko is lured into helping her. Should the Prime Directive have any say in guiding what he does to help her? He is going against Starfleet regulations concerning time travel, and in this case not for a worthy cause. He is diving into the pseudo-godlike role with the Bajorans instead of remaining neutral... if that means anything in this limbo that Federation and Bajoran relations have entered into for display in front of the Dominion. We do see that he seems lulled into the belief that he won't actually have to take responsibility for allowing Kira to go into the past - the Wormhole Prophet Aliens are supposedly going to make the final decision. It all seems a bit limp.

All that said, the episode's content isn't too bad or unworthy; I just take serious issue with the way we got into the time traveling bit, feeling the stakes were too poorly set-up to entice emotional investment from anyone with a truly enlightened head on their shoulders. The episode's atrocious title isn't any help in the enticement arena either - one of the worst and most off-putting they could have come up with. Oh well. Thankfully, the rest of the season is still entertaining, and this episode doesn't break the flow too badly.

This Deep Space Nine Season Six story is available on DVD.
Click on the Amazon symbol for the desired disc format and location nearest you for pricing and availability:

Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Season Six (1997-1998):

26 episodes @ 43 minutes each.

Get your copy of this 7-disc DVD set
from the links below:

DVD Extras include:

  • Crew Dossier featurette: Julian Bashir
  • Crew Dossier featurette: Quark
  • "Far Beyond the Stars" in-depth
    episode featurette
  • 24th Century Wedding featurette
  • "Section 31" barely hidden featurettes
  • DS9 Sketchbook - John Eaves
  • Photo Gallery


DVD Canada



Article written by Martin Izsak. Comments on this article are welcome. You may contact the author from this page:

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Read the next Star Trek review: "The Reckoning"

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