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Star trek: Deep Space Nine 7.13 - What you leave behind

Stardate around 52800
Threat advisory: Severe - Severe risk of entertaining activities

Episode propaganda

On the eve of battle, Bashir (Alexander Siddig) and Ezri (Nicole de Boer) spend the night together.

Later, with Sisko (Avery Brooks) in command, the Defiant joins the Federation-Klingon-Romulan Fleet as the invasion of Cardassia is launched. On Cardassia Prime, Kira (Nana Visitor), Damar (Casey Biggs) and Garak (Andrew J Robinson) discuss resistance plans to sabotage the Dominion's power and communication centres. On Bajor, Kai Winn (Louise Fletcher) asks Dukat (Marc Alaimo) to join her when she releases the Pah-Wraiths from the Fire Caves, and Dukat vows to destroy Sisko.

Persons of interest

  • Avery Brooks .... Commander Benjamin Lafayette Sisko, Director
  • René Auberjonois .... Constable Odo
  • Michael Dorn .... Lieutenant Worf
  • Nicole de Boer .... Lieutenant Ezri Dax
  • Cirroc Lofton .... Jake Sisko
  • Colm Meaney .... Chief O'Brien
  • Armin Shimerman .... Quark
  • Alexander Siddig .... Doctor Julian Bashir
  • Nana Visitor .... Colonel/Commander Kira Nerys
  • Majel Barrett .... Starfleet computer voice
  • Louise Fletcher .... Kai Winn
  • Marc Alaimo .... Dukat
  • Casey Biggs .... Damar
  • Andrew J Robinson .... Garak
  • Rosalind Chao .... Keiko
  • Jeffery Combs .... Weyoun
  • Salome Jens .... Changeling
  • Penny Johnson .... Kasidy Sisko
  • Aron Eisenberg .... Lieutenant Nog
  • JG Hertzler .... Martok
  • Barry Jenner .... Admiral Ross
  • Deborah Lacey .... Sarah
  • Julianna McCarthy .... Mila
  • Hana Hatae .... Molly
  • James Darren .... Vic Fontaine
  • Mel Johnson Junior .... Broka
  • Greg Ellis .... Ekoor
  • Cyndi Pass .... Ginger
  • Kevin Scott Allen .... Jem'Hadar
  • Christopher Halstead .... Jem'Hadar First
  • Judi Durand .... Cardassian computer voice
  • Ira Steven Behr .... Screenwriter
  • Hans Beimler .... Screenwriter
  • Allan Kroeker .... Director

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Intelligence report

The end.

This is the final episode not only of the Dominion war arc but of the series itself. That means questions must be answered, problems solved, enmities resolved and lives lost. What you leave behind gives you all that and more. Special effects, space battles, betrayals, murders, upheavals, resolutions and infinities.

The biggest question for me and for you as well, dear reader, is whether this episode is worthy of seven years' worth of rapt attention. In my never quite humble opinion, it is. This 88 minute extravaganza warps and wefts a giant tapestry that cannot be fully appreciated until it is complete. Only then can you step back and admire the finished work; before then you lose yourself in the individual strands weaving about and against each other.

Enough of these immaterial metaphors (pun intended) and onto the action. From the word go, it's all go. The war comes to a head in a Fire all weapons! fandango, segues into a tight andante, swoops down into an intimate duet then soars up to a poignant fare thee well. (Boy, am I on medication or what?!) At each new phrase the options become fewer until there is only one thing left to do: kill or be killed. Coolness.

Odo's painful and daring decision to cure the Female Changeling and end the hostilities was set up way back at the Beginning of Season 6, when, on her departure from DS9, the Female Changeling said to Weyoun 5, "I would give the entire Alpha Quadrant if it meant Odo would return to us." That sentence stuck in my head, and turned out to be more prophetic than anyone could know.

Sisko's dilemma over being the Emissary of gods in which he did not believe let alone worship has been resolving itself squarely in favour of both eventualities over the whole series and comes to its only possible conclusion. He gives the Prophets everything they have asked for and gets everything they could ever promise in return. His self-sacrifice to rid Bajor of the danger of the Pah-Wraiths, their Emissary (Dukat) and the Kosst amojan is exactly as it should have been. Everyone else's reaction to their loss is equally as apt, but in a more poignant and painful way. Jake's pain is clearly felt in the final scene as the view pulls back from the Promenade to reveal Deep Space Nine, the Denorius Belt and then the enormity of space. So much has happened in this tiny corner of the galaxy that it is nigh on impossible to comprehend. Awesome.

What happens now? People go their separate ways, move on, stay still, wait... the paths that crossed seven years ago near a backwater planet called Bajor have melded together for a while and now are spreading apart once again. Those who walked them will never be the same. Entire cultures will never be the same, on both sides of the galaxy. What a war. What a life.

Deep Space Nine has been an extraordinary show, pulling in the best effects, the best stories, the wildest dreams and the darkest nightmares. Each episode has been a turn of the screws; each life, each death a lightness and darkness to reveal the depths of the Human condition; each word writ clear by a pen dip't in the fountain of humanity. The broader horror of war has blazed forth in all its fascinating ugliness: people selling their soul for love, others satisfying their darkest lusts. violence, hatred, invincible love, implacable enmity... this show has seen the best and the worst of times. It has torn asunder the veil behind which many people hide, it has lifted rocks beneath which unnamed horrors crawl, it has revelled in the joys of humanity and basked in the fire of life.

This show has taken Star trek to places it has never been, and that is an accomplishment in itself. Q'plah!

Security censorship classification

PG (Low level violence)

Not for public release in Australia before date

VHS rental and retail: 6 January 2000

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