Star Trek 380: For the Cause

380. For the Cause

FORMULA: The Maquis + The Menagerie + In the Hands of the Prophets

WHY WE LIKE IT: Eddington comes of age. Kasidy's choice.

WHY WE DON'T: The Garak-Ziyal romance.

REVIEW: If miserable characters is what drives the drama, Kasidy Yates had to be proven a traitor of some kind eventually, but they didn't go the expected route. At first it seemed like she might be a changeling in our midst, but by For the Cause, they're too nice a couple for that to be the case. Maquis sympathiser? A little more up her alley. She's the kind of opinionated person who might throw in with them, and it's clear in For the Cause, that she's only smuggling medical supplies and food to them.

Who would have expected that she was also being manipulated by Michael Eddington though? Eddington wasn't set up sufficiently, in my opinion, but his too few appearances usually put him at odds with Sisko and crew because he was too straight an arrow. To have him backstab Sisko now means his entire record should be looked at. Thankfully, there's a "straight arrow" scene in this very episode, so the inference is that his "loyal soldier" routine is a deep cover. His speech at the end lays out his true opinion, and his comparison of the Federation to the Borg is rather disturbing venom. Finally, the Maquis have a face we can care about.

As for Kasidy's ultimate fate, it is as surprising as Eddington's. Her reporting back for prison because she cares for Sisko shows just how honorable her motives have always been (she even lets her crew go first). If nothing else, the episode tells us how important she has become to Sisko's world, but he can't protect her forever, especially if she won't take the chance to get out he offers her. And if she is guilty of something, he's ready to forgive her for it, though he has his doubts at first. His scene with Jake about things changing "but not this" is really quite excellent.

The subplot involving Garak and Ziyal starting a romance (or at least a friendship) isn't on the same level, however. First of all, they've changed the actress and made no attempt to make her sound or look like the first Ziyal. Garak isn't himself either, speechless when it comes to women, especially those he suspects of wanting to kill him, it seems. It just doesn't play, frankly. I doubt a top Obsidian Order operative would have this kind of weakness, and even his wittier moments depend on his being kinda stupid. The subplot also gives us our first look at springball, and disappointingly, it's some kind of racquetball.

LESSON: Like iguanas on a heating rock, so are the days of our lives.

REWATCHABILITY - High: Despite the lame subplot, the Maquis story is engrossing, with Sisko between a rock and a hard place and being played for a chump.