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Star Trek - Deep Space Nine, Episode 19: Duet [VHS] (1993)

Avery Brooks , Rene Auberjonois , James L. Conway  |  NR |  VHS Tape
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Avery Brooks, Rene Auberjonois, Cirroc Lofton, Alexander Siddig, Colm Meaney
  • Directors: James L. Conway
  • Writers: Gene Roddenberry, Jeanne Carrigan-Fauci, Lisa Rich, Michael Piller, Peter Allan Fields
  • Producers: David Livingston
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, HiFi Sound, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Paramount
  • VHS Release Date: July 8, 1997
  • Run Time: 106 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 6304489684
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #805,006 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews


Arguably one of the best episodes of Deep Space Nine and a jewel in the entire Trek canon (it was shown during the Museum of Television and Radio Broadcasting's Tribute to Excellence in 1994), "Duet" is a powerful and moving tale about the apparent capture of a notorious war criminal. When a middle-aged Cardassian (Harris Yulin) arrives on the station to receive medical treatment, Major Kira (Nana Visitor) accuses him of being a monster named Gul Darhe'el, the "Butcher of Gallitepp," who killed thousands of Bajorans at a notorious labor camp. What ensues is an incendiary exchange between Kira and the imprisoned Darhe'el, in which he boasts provocatively of his crimes and strikes a nerve in the major by accusing her of ignoring the pain and deaths she caused as a Resistance terrorist. Seeing red, Kira keeps returning to Darhe'el for more verbal combat, but Sisko (Avery Brooks) and Odo (Rene Auberjonois) suspect something is amiss.

Pitched by a couple of interns on the show as a Judgement at Nuremberg-like courtroom drama, "Duet" was instead given a Man in the Glass Booth spin by writers and coproducers Ira Behr and Peter Fields. Ironically, the episode was made during a state of end-of-the-season exhaustion and under a frustrating mandate to shoot cheaply. Yet the result is stellar, a morally and politically complex drama. --Tom Keogh

From the Back Cover

A Kobheerian freighter arrives at the station carrying a Cardassian passenger suffering from a medical condition known as Kalla-Nohra. Upon seeing the visitor, Major Kira (Nana Visitor) immediately arrests him, citing that the only place he could have contracted Kalla-Nohra was at Gallitepp, a Bajoran forced labor camp. Though he denies the accusation, the Cardassian, tentatively identified as a teacher, is held captive while Kira investigates his background.

A photograph from Bajoran archives reveals that this teacher is actually Gul Darhe'el, the "Butcher of Gallitepp". When Kira confronts him with the information, the Cardassian says it's true - but an even deeper secret remains!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic work of psychodrama January 26, 1999
By A Customer
Wow...this is "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" at its best. The plot is simple (Kira suspects that a sick man brought aboard the station is actually a notorious Cardassian war criminal), but terrific direction, great music, and fantastic acting from everyone involved make this episode totally riveting. Harris Yulin is arguably Star Trek's most impressive guest star ever, and his Dr. Hannibal Lecter-ish role is wonderful. The psychology of prejudice is examined in the simplicity of the interrogation scenes and comes to a head in an incredible ending. A nearly flawless and definitely recommended episode.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars harnessing hatred October 29, 2004
A Kobherian freighter requests docking at DS9, requesting medical aid for a passenger who suffers from Kalla-Nohra syndrome. This perks up Kira's ears, as the only people who have ever contracted the disease were present at the Gallitepp forced labor camp during a mining accident.

In Star Trek lore, every race that we see on a recurring basis is based on a culture in Earth's past or present. Klingons were modeled after Samurai warriors, for example. Bajorans are clearly Star Trek's version of the Jewish people and the Cardassians are the sci-fi version of German Nazis. This is especially evident in the DS9 series in which we see a liberated Bajor, recovering from the cruel occupation of the Cardassians. Gallitepp is their version of Auschwitz. Bajoran women were raped in front of their children, men beaten until their wives could no longer recognize them and old people who could no longer work were buried alive as the Cardassians forced the Bajorans to strip-mine the resources of their own planet for the Cardassian cause and then were eliminated when they were deemed no longer useful.

Kira goes to sickbay to visit the patient, since survivors of the camp she helped to liberate hold a special place in the heart of all Bajorans. When she arrives, she sees not a Bajoran, but a Cardassian under the doctor's care. Since he clearly suffers from Kalla-Nohra syndrome, he clearly must have been present at Gallitepp, which makes him gulity of war crimes by default.

Kira's shoulder pads go into over-drive and her hair gets more spikey - she calls for Odo and the man who claims to be Aiman Maritza tries to flee. Odo subdues him and he is put into the brig.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the series' shining moments April 7, 2000
It is rare that in a show's first year that it has an episode with such power and substance. "Duet" is just one of those teleplays that scores on all levels: fine acting, intelligent dialogue, and film-level direction. If this world were fair, both series regular Nana Visitor and guest performer Harris Yulan would have been dusting off their respective mantles for an Emmy award the initial year of this show's airing. The thespians, acting as the title indicates, in basically what is a two-person drama, complement and compliment each other in sincerity and execution of their craft. The twists and turns of the script keep the viewer mesmerized until the most tragic of all endings. I love Trek for the SFX, but the shows which deal with humanity at its best and worst are the ones that truly stand out! Series television has never been better than this installment.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "We're guilty, all of us." August 26, 2003
This one was definitely a highlight of Deep Space Nine's first season. Playing with the old wounds of the Cardassian occupation of Bajor, the writers created an intricately constructed story that parallels some real-world events, but adds enough of its own material to retain a unique flavor.
The plot of this episode takes a number of tricky twists, so I won't go into a summary of them here. It's enough to say that a possible Cardassian war criminal appears on the station, and Kira must determine who he is, and what crimes he committed in the past. The plot, as it unravels, is diabolical, and had me completely fooled and eager to get to the next revelation.
This is an episode hinging on strong performances and steady direction. Harris Yulin as the Cardassian is particularly notable. Two scenes in particular stand out, and I'll try to describe them without giving away any plot points. In the first scene, we see Yulin's character from Major Kira's point of view, and what she sees is genuinely frightening and unsettling. In the second scene, the scripted lines are very similar, but Yulin alters his performance, and the direction is just different enough to throw a completely different spin on what is unfolding on the screen. We see the action through Kira's eyes, and the difference is startling. Kudos to everyone involved for managing to completely change the tone using only the most subtle of means.
This episode proves that Deep Space Nine can do a terrific episode without leaving its main sets. In fact, the narrative rarely moves away from three rooms, and this gives the episode an intense and effective claustrophobic feel. The strong script, excellent performances, and confident direction combine to make this episode one of the best Star Treks that I've seen. This one is definitely recommended, especially to those people who know that science fiction (and indeed good drama) is far more than mere visuals and special effects.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not just great Trek, but great storytelling October 2, 2002
Verified Purchase
This is an classic story, and a fascinating and ultimately moving hour of TV. Major Kira, her wounds still fresh (and deep) from her planet's previous occupation by the Cardassians, goes through a major transformation after dealing with an alleged Cardassian war criminal who is apprehended on the space station.
A lot of DS9 episodes may take a little familiarity with the backstory to appreciate, but this episode stands firmly on its own 2 feet. You get all the exposition you need, and the payoff at the end is powerful. Plus, Harris Yulin's performance as the Cardasian suspect is nothing short of awesome. Great sci-fi, but more importantly, great drama.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best
As an avid S Trek fan, I have to say this is one of the best. Harris Yulin and Nana Visitor should have gotten awards for this episode. And the writing was excellent. Read more
Published on July 31, 2007 by Matthew A. Johnston
5.0 out of 5 stars Being Cardassian IS'NT Enough!!!!!
I get COLD CHILLS at the end of this episode.I'm a
Star Trek fan with some HARSH criticism about DS9 but THIS
is one of their Top 10 BEST shows. Read more
Published on April 17, 2004 by Andre' S Grindle
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply put...
Simply put, this is the best Star Trek episode that I have ever seen, and I have seen the majority of them. Read more
Published on December 23, 2002
5.0 out of 5 stars The Making of a Martyr
This is a great early episode of Deep Space 9. Ever since The Next Generation, we knew that Bajorans and Cardassians did not get along, and Cardassians occupied Bajor for over 50... Read more
Published on October 1, 2000 by L C
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the Greats.
Every year of Deep Space Nine produced at least one episode that I consider to be among the best Star Trek episodes ever. Season 1's Duet is the first of these. Read more
Published on August 8, 2000 by Geebus
5.0 out of 5 stars Duet: A Tale of Two Species
One of Deep Space Nine's more intriguing elements is the relationship between the Cardassians and Bajorans. Read more
Published on July 5, 2000 by Joe White
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
A marvelous piece of work and certainly a surprise considering the unevenness of DS9's first season, 'Duet' is a perfect example of how big visual effects and exciting dog-fights... Read more
Published on August 7, 1999
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