Star Trek 363: Indiscretion

363. Indiscretion

FORMULA: The Homecoming + Bloodlines + Lessons

WHY WE LIKE IT: The Breen! A big step! Dukat vs. Kira!

WHY WE DON'T: Dukat sitting on a spine. (Your mileage may vary.)

REVIEW: The only real problem I have with Indiscretion is the slapstick comedy of former despot Dukat sitting on a spine that doesn't look like it was on that rock in the first place, then dancing around like a big baby and massaging his ass with a prop. Nana Visitor has a very natural laugh here, but the Star Trek tradition of shared laughter rings false. But this is all part of Dukat's seduction of Kira, isn't it? After some great interplay between the two characters here, and Kira not believing she could ever be friends with this tyrant (nor should she), this episode, for good or ill, disarms Dukat somewhat. Humiliating him and showing him to be able to laugh at himself is part of that, but unconditional love for his daughter Ziyal, played by the first of three actresses, also helps. It almost makes Kira forget the atrocities he's overseen. Of course Dukat's point of view is that he's made Bajor stronger. And since it seems like he's got an eye for the pretty Bajoran girls, everything he tells Kira must be suspect.

Ziyal gets a short introduction, but we'll see more of her later. The same is true of the Breen whom we finally see after so many mysterious references (now it's the Tholians we get teased about). They don't give up their mysteries easily though, and you'll never see one without the Princess Leia helmet. They're cool, but leave us wanting more. Speaking of cool, the location work is excellent in this episode. That sandy dune adds a lot of production value to the scene.

Meanwhile, on the station, we get my favorite comedy bit in all of Star Trek. Yes, it's the "It's a big step" relationship snafu! Kasidy gets an offer to work closer to home, and wants that home to be Deep Space 9. Sisko's reaction is... underwhelming, let's say. I've seen the subplot unfold many times, but I still found myself laughing out loud throughout. The deeper Sisko got into trouble, the more I laughed. What it really does is put Kasidy Yates on the map as Sisko's equal (or superior). She's a self-made woman who doesn't need a man in her life, just chose to have one. If he's not on board, well screw him. The last scene where she leaves him hanging for a kiss is deliciously cruel... and hilarious. Good bit parts for Bashir, Dax and Jake in this one too.

LESSON: A woman can wear the pants in a family. If she wears a unitard, watch out!

REWATCHABILITY - High: Shifts Dukat's paradigm for a season in which the Cardassians aren't the bad guys, introduces and/or solidifies new characters, and does it with wit and humor.