Monday, October 31, 2016

Deep Space Nine 2x21 "The Maquis, Part 2"

rating: **

the story: Sisko and company must figure out how to resolve the crisis once they realize his friend wasn't lying about the Cardassians.

what it's all about: "Maquis, Part 2" kind of proves that this was Deep Space Nine still not entirely sure how to tell multipart episodes, which was what the ambitious three-parter at the start of the season had already suggested.  While it's absolutely true that later in the series this was no problem at all (as soon as the two-part third season opener, in fact, plus the couple other two-parters from that season).

The problem here is that it's a story that was unnecessarily stretched out, the idea being to make it more of a dramatic event than it really warranted.  In fact, in hindsight it probably would've been far better just to concentrate on Dukat's participation and downplay the role of Sisko's friend, the defecting Starfleet officer who could never hope to contend with Ro Laren over in Next Generation's "Preemptive Strike."

You can tell there was some effort at emphasizing the importance of the story when frequent Star Trek guest actor John Schuck is cast, and Admiral Nechayev makes an appearance.  But neither is enough to salvage an episode that instantly loses all its relevance to the series when everything about it is done infinitely better later on.

But the one redemptive element is actually pretty cool of the season: It's kind of the apology to the earlier "Sanctuary," which completely botched an analogy of the State of Israel.  If you think about it, the Maquis are an analogy of Israel, too, and it's really "The Maquis, Part 2" that makes that clear, especially with the Cardassians being caught playing dirty against them.

criteria analysis:
  • franchise - Concluding the story that helps launch Voyager makes it at least noteworthy.
  • series - It improves at least one thing, from earlier in the season, which is a good thing.
  • character - Not especially relevant to any of the characters, though.
  • essential - If the episode had known what I read into it above, I think it would've been better, but I'm not sure it did.
notable guest-stars:
Marc Alaimo (Dukat)
Natalija Nogulich (Nechayev)
John Schuck

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