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Star Trek DS9 - Season 2 - Episode 04

Star Trek DS9 - 2x04 - Invasive Procedures

Originally Aired: 1993-10-17

The crew must fight for Jadzia's life when a desperate Trill takes the group hostage and steals the Dax symbiont. [DVD]

My Rating - 6

Fan Rating Average - 4.66

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Filler Quotient: 2, filler, but an enjoyable episode nevertheless. You can skip this one, but you'd miss out on some fun.
- There's no essential plot or exposition in this episode that renders it unskippable, but it's a decent episode, even though it could have been better.


- O'Brien has two brothers.

Remarkable Scenes
- Quark regarding Rom: "He couldn't find a cup of water if you dropped him in a lake."
- Bashir laying into the Klingon to help him try and save Jadzia's life.
- Sisko reminiscing with the new Dax.
- Quark faking his injury.
- Quark cracking the lock on Odo's box cage.
- Sisko shooting the new Dax.

My Review
This episode features a most remarkable guest star, a disgruntled Trill never given the chance to join with a symbiote. We learn many interesting things about Trill in this episode. Symbiote joinings are rare on Trill, due to the high standards of compatibility established by the Trill society. It's nice to see a guest bad guy who's so profoundly flawed and ultimately pathetic, especially as a counterpoint to last week's James Bond villain. It's also nice to see an episode like this, which is very violent by the necessity of the plot, end with zero loss of life. The final scene is tragic and you really feel sorry for Verad. Sure, he was an introverted, selfish sociopath, but all he wanted was to better himself. Something of that is sympathetic to me at least. The best part of this episode is how Sisko works so hard at reasoning with the bad guys. He does an excellent job too. I'm most fond of the scene just after Verad becomes Dax when Sisko reminisces with him. The whole episode was very nicely done.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From djb on 2009-01-02 at 8:25pm:
    I enjoyed this episode quite a lot, even though it was in the old "oh-crap-someone's-taken-us-hostage-what-do-we-do" plot vein.

    It was cool to learn more about the Trill. What was especially cool was seeing the change in Verad, and how Sisko knew from the start that it would change him, most likely to Sisko's advantage. Verad, of course, was so myopically focused on his goal of getting a symbiont, that he had failed to really appreciate the full ramifications of joining. That, of course, is probably related to the reasons he was denied a symbiont in the first place. Mareel, not being a trill, had no idea, and seeing her gradual acceptance of what Sisko knew all along is great.

    It was pretty interesting to see Jadzia, who is normally so confident, in such a vulnerable state-- it added some depth to her character.

    One thing that bothered me was Quark seeming to get off so easily. We hear Kira say he's through at the station toward the beginning of the episode, but this talk goes away by the end. Maybe he redeemed himself just a little by helping the doctor sedate the Klingon and by cracking the lock on the box Odo's stuck in... who knows.
  • From Bernard on 2010-03-30 at 9:31am:
    Good episode for all the reason listed in the main review.

    Timing is not fantastic since this is the second episode in a row where the station is evacuated! But we'll forgive that because I like to assess each episode on its own merits.

    Interesting to see how all the characters react to the situation. Can you see the same thing playing out later in the series? The interaction between Sisko and Verad Dax is especially pleasing and well done. Solid episode, 7 for me.
  • From Zaphod on 2011-04-17 at 7:27am:
    How could you overlook the possibility of putting Jadzia in a stasis pod? How could Bashir miss that?

    Very big flaw, but at least the time pressure wasn't overemphasized so it didn't ruin this otherwise very entertainig episode for me.
  • From on 2011-08-20 at 10:52pm:
    I thought this was a really fantastic episode, that belongs more in the 8/9 range.

    There are many absolutely exceptional performances here, starting with the actor portraying Verad. The symbiote integration is depicted perfectly. One gets a very clear sense of who Verad is before the joining (and again at the end, when it's reversed), and a very clear sense of the new entity, Verad Dax.

    The really astonishing thing is that the viewer can sense that it isn't exactly a "new" entity at all - we're all very familiar with Dax already, as Jadzia Dax, and the portrayal of Verad Dax conveys that uncanny continuity. The effect is really quite an impressive bit of writing, directing, and acting.

    Not only does this episode provide more information about Trill society and Symbiote joinings, but we get a direct, emotional sense of what such integrations really mean for the Trills who undergo them.

    - - -

    There are a handful of other fantastic performances - including Sisko's convincing affections for Jadzia, anger towards Verad, and frustration towards the helplessness of the whole situation. His "temper" outbursts have not always been very compelling in previous episodes, but I love the scene when he goes berserk on the Klingon mercenary.

    Bashir also has a great dramatic part to play - he is forced to violate the Hippocratic oath and remove the symbiote from Jadzia, who he is obviously in love with. As the reviewer mentioned, his chewing out the Klingon makes for a remarkable scene. Do not get between a doctor and his patient, even if you're a Klingon holding a disruptor pistol.

    Finally, I thought Quark's character was portrayed even a bit better than usual. Perhaps feeling personally responsible for the hijacking (which he certainly was), he puts his lobes on the line and hatches a plan that is both daring and devious. It's quite entertaining to see him launch himself at a Klingon 3 times his size, then feint an excruciating ear injury. There's a few brilliant comedic moments around this ear injury, but it's also a clever and successful plot to free Odo ("Do we really have to?"), and ultimately help Sisko take back the ship.

  • From Jeff Browning on 2011-10-18 at 7:21pm:
    A couple of other problems mar this otherwise excellent episode:

    1. The ion storm. In my experience of watching Star Trek ion storms requiring the evacuation of a station are exceedingly rare. Did Verad create this one? If not, his appearance at this particular point in time when the station is almost abandoned is conveniently coincidental and therefore not believable.

    2. We see Verad as a mediocrity, and absolute milk toast. He cannot even manage without support from his woman. Yet he somehow managed to accumulate enough wealth to obtain a spaceship and pay to Klingon mercenaries, as well as mastermind a brilliant crime. I find no capability like this in Verad pre-joining. Where is he getting this? It just does not fit with the rest of his character.
  • From Gul Ranek on 2012-12-12 at 11:13am:
    Nobody noticed Tim Russ as the Klingon? Seems really strange for the part, too calm, very different than other Klingons on the show. He was good in the role of Tuvok, though. Maybe that's why his acting seems strange to me.

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