Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
Air date: 2/15/1993
Teleplay by D. C. Fontana and Peter Allan Fields
Story by Peter Allan Fields
Directed by David Carson
Review by Jamahl Epsicokhan
Jadzia Dax is charged with the murder of a military hero from a non-Federation world that her symbiont's previous host Curzon allegedly committed 30 years ago. Now an extradition hearing may decide whether Jadzia can be held responsible for the actions of a previous life.
"Dax" is a captivating drama that successfully accomplishes a great number of things. First is the Trill background, as the episode poses and answers numerous questions involving the intriguing implications of a joined species. Then there's the emotionally probing exploration of the relationship between Sisko and "Old Man" Dax—highlighting a bond shared between Curzon and Sisko that both characters hope will survive the change in the host. Curzon's colorful backstory ("not the model Trill citizen") is also of interest.
Then there are the courtroom scenes, written with finely-tuned dialog and plausible arguments. Anne Haney as the 100-year-old no-nonsense extradition arbiter is a priceless gem. Odo's investigation proves almost as fascinating, as he locates the widow of the military hero and observes her problems and her concealed role in the matter. The plot unfolds on realistic terms that make plenty of character sense, highlighting personal regrets and sentiments. Every performance is praiseworthy, and the way the courtroom and character issues fit together with the intrigue-like plot is successful without ever colliding in discord. An exemplary effort overall.