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on November 29, 2003
The sixth season, in so many ways, was one of DS9's most astonishing and brilliant seasons, yet it also brought about the end of one of the shows most beloved characters. In an unprecedented move in Star Trek, the season begins with an arc that is altogether some of the most dazzling Trek to ever grace the small screen.
From the commencement of the season, it is quite evident that the season is going to be big in so many ways. From the war with the Dominion to many of the payoff's between the characters that have, in some cases, been building since the first season. Worf and Jadzia's marriage, Odo and Kira finally getting together and Dukat's turn for even the worst are just "some" of the season's highlights.
I stand by my opinion that Terry Farrell's decision to leave the show to do a sitcom that she was later "released" from stands right up there with Denise Crosby's decision to leave STNG, "not too smart!"
As is the usual, the writing, directing and performances by all for this continuation on the saga that is Deep Space Nine are all extraordinary!
A brief synopsis of the more outstanding episodes of the season:
A Time to Stand to Sacrifice of Angels - In this brilliant and unprecedented six episode arc the shows producers takes us from where the fifth season concluded through many of the machinations of the initial stages of the war with the Dominion. Integral to these first six episodes is some the series most extraordinary writing, directing and acting that all lend greatly to this six episode arc being tops among all of the Star Trek episodes ever, from any of the series.
You Are Cordially Invited - Despite the war still raging, in this great episode, we see Star Trek's first Klingon wedding between Worf and Jadzia. Beyond the festivities of the episode, you can truly tell that the actors were having a great time as well.
The Magnificent Ferengi - Iggy Pop makes a guest appearance as a Vorta in this great first Ferengi episode of the season where the Dominion captures Quark and Rom's Moogie.
Waltz - Gul Dukat makes a return to the series after the death of his daughter, Ziyal. Coupling that death with his downfall as the leader of the Cardassian Union has seriously demented his views and Sisko finds himself being the object of Dukat's quest for revenge.
Far Beyond the Stars - Hailed as the series most poignantly well written, directed and performed episode, this episode should've received many more awards than it did. Through his connection to the prophets, Sisko finds himself switching between two different realities; his life on DS9 and a life in which he's a struggling writer in the fifties on Earth and dealing first hand with racism at its worst.
One Little Ship - As an homage to other great Sci-Fi movies, the producers decided to shrink a runabout and it turned out perfectly for this episode in which Bashir, Dax and O'Brien are stuck in a shrunken runabout while the Defiant is taken over by Jem'Hadar.
Honor Among Thieves - DS9 does a mob show as O'Brien is forced to work under cover in the Orion Syndicate and this show works extraordinarily well, highlighting Colm Meaney's talents as a brilliant actor.
Change of Heart - Worf's devout devotion to duty is and his devotion to his wife are brought to the forefront and in conflict in this episode in which they find themselves on a mission to pick up a spy but Jadzia is injured.
In the Pale Moonlight - This episode is the most dramatically well written and performed episode of the season as Sisko finds he is no longer capable of dealing with the casualties of the war and he devises a plan to bring the Romulans into the fold from their neutral status which also prompts him to deal directly with Garak.
His Way - After six long years of pinning over Kira, Odo's greatest wish comes true after the introduction of Vic Fontaine, DS9's resident lounge singer.
Valiant - Nog takes on a larger and more interesting role in this episode in which he and Jake find themselves on board the USS Valiant which is being run by Starfleet Academy's Red Squadron and a fanatical but inexperienced captain.
Profit and Lace - In this extremely funny Ferengi episode, Grand Nagus Zek is deposed by Brunt and Zek comes to DS9 to enlist the aid of Quark.
Time's Orphan - This O'Brien episode speaks greatly for the producers ability to write good family shows when Molly is drawn into a time portal and Miles is able to retrieve her but not the child that entered the portal but a teenage version of her.
Tears of the Prophets - In this extraordinary season closer, the war is still raging but the Federation is taking an upper hand and the Dominion is looking for some way to turn events in their favor. To their relief Dukat makes a return and his sudden addiction with the prophets does more than they could hope for, causing the wormhole itself to close and Sisko loses his connection with the prophets, causing him to go home to Earth, defeated. Here is where actress Terry Farrell made the decision to leave the show and the death of Jadzia comes about. {ssintrepid}
Episode list:
A Time to Stand
Rocks and Shoals
Sons and Daughters
Behind the Lines
Favor the Bold
Sacrifice of Angels
You Are Cordially Invited
Resurrection
Statistical Probabilities
The Magnificent Ferengi
Waltz
Who Mourns for Morn?
Far Beyond the Stars
One Little Ship
Honor Among Thieves
Change of Heart
Wrongs Darker than Death or Night
Inquisition
In the Pale Moonlight
His Way
The Reckoning
Valiant
Profit and Lace
Time's Orphan
The Sound of Her Voice
Tears of the Prophets
Special Features:
Mission Inquiry: "Far Beyond the Stars"
24th Century Wedding
Crew Dossiers': Julian Bashir & Quark
DS9 Sketchbook: John Eaves
Photo Gallery
10 Section 31 "Hidden" files
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on December 31, 2005
Who's idea was it to let Paul Tonks write the Amazon editorial reviews of the DS9 DVD sets? He's entitled to his opinions about the show, but his sweeping statements about how the intersecting plot lines, number of cast members, presence of comedic episodes, etc., "confuse the viewer" are condescending and patronizing. Why can't he just admit that the show confuses/aggravates him? I consider DS9's risky narrative density one of its most appealing and challenging aspects, even when it misfired, and I imagine I'm not alone. Speak for yourself, Paul.
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on September 28, 2003
I'm mainly posting this in oposition to the editorial above. This person does not know Trek very well to not recognize what is by far the best season of Deep Space Nine and argueable, the best season of all Star Trek.
The introduction of Section 31 gave everyone something to talk about. Far Beyond the Stars was an artistic masterpeice. And the death of Jadzia Dax, I must say, the writer of the editorial has it all wrong. Terry Farrell wanted to leave the show. True enough, she didn't want her character killed, but she did make the decision to leave. That may make her character's departure seem out of place, but none the less appropriate. The Dominion War has been faught, officially and unofficially since Season 3 (which began with major tensions with them) and lasted until the very last episode of the series. It is only logical to conclude that someone will die. Sisko reads through thousands of names of casualties at the hands of the Dominion, yet he never lost anyone of his crew until Jadzia. This makes it much more potent...it makes the war seem personal...and the Devil (Dukat) is a more real enemy to Sisko than the Dominion.
Art, plan and simple.
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on October 27, 2003
It's hard for me to pick any one season of DS9 as being the best, but season 6 is perhaps the most interesting season of all. The reason for this is that they took several risks.
One of them of course is the use of long, involved story lines. Almost more than any othe sci-fi series (with the possible exception of Babylon 5), DS9 showed that war was a messy, complicated business, not just in terms of body count but in compromised values, shifting allegiences, and tough decisions that may or may not be right. Sisko truly comes into his own as the leader of the station as well as a key figure in the war. The highlight of the main war story arc is In the Pale Moonlight, a true masterpiece of storytelling about the seamy side of war. Almost as good as this exceptional episode in the general story line is Inquisition, which introduces the KGB- or even Gestapo? -like Section 31(and they work for the good guys!)
Every Trek season has it's off-topic type of episodes, and season 6's are some of the best. Even the Ferengi episodes are not that bad - The Magnificent Ferengi is a comic highlight. Who Mourns for Morn is uneven but nevertheless makes use of one of the most famous non-speaking parts on TV, Morn the barfly. Statistical Probabilities is a very interesting intellectual episode that furthers the story of Julian Bashir as a genetically enhanced human, and shows what can go wrong with such "enhancements". Valiant shows the effect of war on kids (a young Academy squad who somehow end up commanding their own ship after the death of their captain). One Little Ship is a ridiculous but totally fyn episode (Honey, I Shrunk The Runabout!) His Way introduced James Darren as Vic Damone, a holographic night club owner with self-awareness - since Voyager was pursuing the idea of a hologram being a sentient being, this was nice to see - and Vic becomes an important secondary character in season 7. Worf and Jadzia Dax's wedding (You Are Cordially Invited) is a bit cheesy, as many Kllingon episodes tend to be. But the Worf-Jadzia relationship was one of the very few marriages shown in Trek (aside from the O'Briens), and later episodes managed to show the difficulties of being in the same war with the one you love quite effectively, until the death of Jadzia in the last episode. The death itself was quite abrupt - almost up there with the death of Tasha Yar in TNG, but in the context of war it makes sense. Death in war is senseless...
I left the best for last - Far Beyond The Stars. This is a transcendent episode, and a must-see for any sci-fi fan - even if you don't like Trek. It asks the question, are we real? Or are we just a figment of someone's imagination? And what is it that makes what we dream of? This idea was explored somewhat in a Next Generation episode (Message In A Bottle), but it's really told beautifully here.
I can't really think of a truly bad episode in this season, like a couple of the clunkers in both season 5 and 7. All in all, this season is a keeper.
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on March 28, 2003
For my money, Deep Space Nine's Sixth Season was the series' best, and that is quite a distinction. The show tells stories in this season that are both more epic and more personal than ever before, features genuine twists, great acting, of course, as well as some infinitely memorable moments.
The season begins with a sensational story arc that picks up where season 5's "A Call to Arms" left off. The arc is perhaps the show's best, and brings about many developments: Nog becoming an officer, Gul Dukat's daughter getting killed by his second-in-command, Starfleet retaking the station. The show then segues back into its blend of character-based drama and war tales that make this season so good. Character stories are plentiful here and include: Worf and Jadzia tying the knot in "You are Cordially Invited...", Bashir being reunited with his not-quite-so-well-adjusted genetically engineered friends in "Statistical Probabilities", and Dukat's truly evil nature being exposed in the terriffic "Waltz". Marc Alaimo delivers an astonishing portrayal of the once-proud Cardassian Military Leader now a schizoid, hallucinating, paranoid man driven hopelessly mad by his beloved daughter's death. The highlights continue with "Far Beyond the Stars", an episode on race relations on Earth, circa 1950, that has echoes of TNG's "The Inner Light". But where that episode was warm, this one is painful and uncomfortable, but unmistakeably brilliant. It even ventures into the metaphysical, onto the nature of perception and dreams. A memorable episode. Sisko also had some important development in "The Reckoning", where we truly begin to see how great the changes in his soul have become when he is willing to be an Abraham to save Bajor. There were plenty of other character-driven episodes. Chief O'Brien befriends a criminal in "Honor Among Thieves", Kira learns the horrible truth about her mother in "Wrongs Darker...", and Bashir is recruited into a ultrasecret intelligence agency in "Inquisition", which brought us the first glimpse of the amoral Section 31 group, and "Tears of the Prophets" has the most shocking plot twist of all, with Dukat becoming indwelt by a Pah-wraith and murdering one of the crew, as well as the disappearance of the wormhole. There were also plenty of lighter moments. "His Way" introduces the very popular Vic Fontaine hologram who helps Odo out with his love life. "The Magnificent Ferengi" has Quark, Rom, Nog, Brunt and various other Ferengi attempting to free Quark's mother from Dominion incarceration. "Who Mourns for Morn" is the only episode dedicated to everyone's favorite barfly, "One Little Ship" is a cheeky tribute to old science fiction shows where people become miniaturized.
This season also includes my personal favorite episode. "In the Pale Moonlight" is undoubtedly the most spectacular episode that the show ever created. For an episode where nobody leaves the station, nobody gets in a firefight and without even a single scene of space combat, some might wonder how this could be the best episode, let alone one of the most exciting. It is both, in my opinion. The episode centers on Ben Sisko's attempt to gain the Romulans as allies in their fight against the Dominion. In order to do this, Sisko fabricates internal Dominion files, trades a potentially lethal substance for an essential data rod, and becomes indirectly responsible for the death of a Romulan senator. However, the plan soon gets out of Sisko's control, and he must continue down the road paved with good intentions. The episode is beautifully paced, with several twists and a great sudden reversal at the end. One must marvel at the choice that Sisko had to make: save countless lives and compromise your moral integrity or don't and suffer the consequences. A thoroughly nuanced and powerful hour of television, with Avery Brooks' most powerful performance in the run of the show. After watching this episode, it is easy to see why most DS9 fans hail him as Star Trek's best captain. Andrew Robinson as Garak also turns in a memorable performance.
In short, the highlights of this season are too plentiful to list. Buy it.
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on February 15, 2003
Dear Amazon Customers,
One of the most exciting series of programs in the Star Trek universe returns in its sixth season on DVD. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in season 6 takes on some of the most aggressive story development ever in the Star Trek universe of programs. It is the sixth season that really defines Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as the pinnacle of SCI-FI shows in the Star Trek universe.
In the sixth season, Benjamin Sisko played by "Avery Brooks" must come to terms with himself and makes a decision as to his dual roles as the Emissary of Bajor and as a Commander in Starfleet. Even as he leads an assault force that frees the Space Station Deep Space Nine from the clutches of the Cardassians and the Dominion, he finds himself torn having to struggle between both roles. The Federation has asked him on a number of occasions to choose between his dual occupations. In season 6 of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Sisko must make his decision.
It is in the sixth season that the audience learns even more about the turmoil inside of the character Odo played by "Rene Auberjonois" and his wanting to return the Great Link and to his own people. Troubled at Odo's loyalties to his people, Kira Nerys played by "Nana Visitor" confronts Odo with the question as to which side of the war he is on. Odo is caught again with the decision to pick between his love for Major Kira and his desire to return to his own kind. These events leads the two characters into one of the most tremulous period of their lives.
During this season, the character Miles O'Brien played by "Colm Meaney" is reunited with his family but is still cautious and tries to protect them from the horrors of war. Although he has never questioned the actions or his loyalty to Starfleet, O'Brien finds himself confronted with the decision to help friends or to blindly follow the orders of his superiors. The writers of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine finally give the opportunity for "Colm Meaney" to show some excellent dramatic acting as the character Chief O'Brien.
What would season 6 be without the appearance of the most popular race in the entire Star Trek universe, the Klingons. In season 6 we get to see the wedding between the Klingon character Worf played by "Michael Dorn" and the Trill character Jadzia Dax played by "Terry Farrell". Their sometimes on again off again romance makes for some interesting dialog between the two but finally it comes to a conclusion with the wedding ceremony which reveals even more about the Klingon society. One of the most aggressive aspects of the show is revealed on the last episode of this season in which both Jadzia Dax and Commander Worf's lives are dramactically affected forever.
Many SCI-FI fans and Trekkers alike will be dazzled this season with the special effects of the first ever space battle scene shown in it's entirety from start to finish. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine had already received accolades for it's special effects in previous episodes but in this season, the audience gets treated to the most spectacular space battle scene ever shown in the Star Trek universe of programs.
I could tell you so much more about this season but the best thing for you to do is purchase Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 6 on DVD. You will find that this season is the absolute best that the Star Trek universe of programs has to offer. Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in season 6 reached all new heights in story, character and special effects development which has not been repeated in the Star Trek universe of programs since the airing of this show. You will thoroughly enjoy Star Trek: Deep Space Nine season 6 on DVD.
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on June 20, 2012
Just getting to see the actors without makeup and prosthetics is worth watching alone. Then add in the fact that they all have different accents to fit the time and era and you've got a recipe for greatness. It was so weird seeing Nog without the Ferengi get up, and it was especially strange hearing Gul Dekat's voice coming out of a human looking guy. Some of my favorite actors from DS9 showing off their acting chops in this off the wall episode (I was especially impressed and surprised at Capt Sisko's transformation in character)

And as usual Jake Sisko shows up and ruins the illusion with his horrendous acting and cartoonish accent D: Gah I hate being negative, but every episode he's in is one too many for me.
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on March 21, 2012
The 34th rule of Acquisition states that "War is Good for Business," but War is GREAT for Deep Space 9. Knee deep into the war with the Dominion, DS9 goes where no other franchise has dared to go. The closest comparison is the Borg in Next Generation, however the Borg were entirely unsympathetic cyborg creatures who were the binary opposite of all other life forms in the Star Trek universe. That made the Borg war a black and white moral affair. However here in DS9 we have a war between similar life forms with radically different ideologies. The previous 5 years of character development for both sides of the war make for intensely detailed and rich drama. The conflict between Dukat and Sisko is riveting because of the dynamic relationship that has developed between the two leaders for years. DS9 is the only Star Trek that shows humanity in differing shades of grey. DS9 is not about a utopian future with perfect characters that have to seek drama and conflict outside of themselves, DS9 rejects syrupy platitudes and gets down and dirty in season 6.

"In the Pale Moonlight" is an exquisite examination of morality in a time of war and is my favorite offering in Season 6. "Favor the Bold," "Sacrifice of Angels," "Waltz," "The Reckoning," "Far Beyond the Stars," "Inquisition," and "Tears of the Prophets" are the pick of the litter here.

The sequentially driven Dominion War arch episodes are top notch in season 6. That being said, this season also contains some of the worst stand alone episodes of the entire series. "Sons and Daughters," "Statistical Probabilities," "Change of Heart," "The Orphan," and "The Valiant" are weak offerings that dilute an otherwise excellent season.

The duds are compensated with a great convivial fare in "Who Mourns for Morn," and "The Magnificent Ferengi."

The tension is building up in season 6 for the final season 7 ahead that leads to the best and fully realized ending of any show in television history.
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The sixth season of DS9 was a considerable challenge to all involved: the ongoing war with the Dominion lead to the loss of the space station to the Cardassian/Dominion alliance; Dukat crossed over to the dark side completely as he sold his soul to become the head of the new Cardassian government; Worf and Dax married; Odo romances Major Kira and, finally, Section 31 reared its ugly little head recalling the hysteria of the McCarthy era Communist witch hunts.
With more of the cast stepping behind the camera and an influx of vets from Next Generation helping out as well, DS9 managed to maintain its roots but continue to forge its own, unique dark identity among the Trek franchise. There were so many plot threads dangling from previous seasons that they could easily have gummed up the storytelling in season 6. Instead, they provided just the right amount of variety and allowed the conflict between the Dominion and Federation to continue without it becoming too tiresome.
If that wasn't enough there was a unique story that was every bit as special as Trials and Tribb-ulations from season 5; the brilliant Far Beyond The Stars (written by Ira Steven Behr and Hans Beimler from a story by Twilight Zone vet Marc Scott Zicree)allows Ben Sisko to venture into the past with a twist; he's a 1950's science fiction writer working for Incredible Tales of Scientific Wonder Magazine. The crew is there as well inhabiting similar roles. Sisko's main story is called Deep Space 9 about the very troubled space station whose crew are caught in the midst of interstellar war. It's a powerful episode that transcends its cleverness to become a great episode of science fiction television (and not just a great Trek moment).
The season ends with the murder of Jadzia Dax at the hands of the villianous Gul Dukat. Suddenly, Worf moves from Newlywed to grief stricken husband all within the span of 26 episodes. Tears of the Prophet also has major changes in store for Sisko, the wormhole and DS9. If the original Star Trek and Next Generation are an example of the franchise childhood and adolescence, then DS9 represents its adulthood. The series continued to deal with complex story lines, themes and dark moments that made it a very real adult series. The Trek franchise never improved from DS9. It has continued (with mixed results)but is missing the risk taking that characterized DS9.
There are quite a few digital compression artifacts visible particularly if you watch the film in progressive scan mode. Still, squeezing 4 episodes of DS9's dark, rich and active frames onto a single dual layered disc comes fraught with problems. On the whole the boxed sets have looked pretty good considering how many episodes are squeezed onto each disc. The 5.1 sound hasn't been used to maximum advantage on any of the DS9 sets but they do sound pretty good overall and are an improvement over Next Gen's boxed sets.
The extras appear to be promising but, once again, Paramount has chosen not to allow there to be any writer/director/actor audio commentaries. With a series this rich and full of interesting characters, DS9 would benefit from a couple of the key episodes having a commentary track. Ira Steven Behr would be the prime candidate (since he and Robert Hewitt Wolfe more or less ran the show day to day after Pillar left)for an audio commentary. It's a pity as DS9 certainly warrants boundiful extras.
Still, this is a rich season full of strong writing/direction and acting that looks good if not spectacular on DVD. The dark DVD transfer is a major improvement over many of the home videos and released. Is this the best season of DS9? It would definitely be a close match between season 5 and 6. Season 7 had many memorable moments but it lacked the dynamic tension of these particular two seasons.
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on March 14, 2012
I've been watching through the series, skipping the episodes that are real dreck. AbsolutelyNutts (the "~Keep On Trekkin'" guy writing reviews) has been helpful. I don't want to miss any good space battles or plot points, and his reviews are helpful when I'm deciding what to skip. Aside from his love of Lwaxana Troi and hatred of the mirror universe, I'm pretty much with him.

That said, you've gotta watch this one. The fact that it's separate from the Dominion plot is irrelevant. This is a great hour of television. It's a fantastic exploration of what science fiction means to culture, and it's the only time that Star Trek really engages with the issue of race.

Plus, like the man says, you get to see all the actors without their prosthetic makeup. That's cool too.
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