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Star Trek DS9 - Season 4 - Episode 15

Star Trek DS9 - 4x15 - Sons of Mogh

Originally Aired: 1996-2-12

Synopsis:
Cast out of Klingon society because of Worf's dishonor, his outcast brother asks Worf to kill him. [DVD]

My Rating - 6

Fan Rating Average - 6.12

Rate episode?

Rating: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
# Votes: 12 2 3 5 14 12 15 14 10 18 19

Filler Quotient: 1, partial filler, but has important continuity. I recommend against skipping this one.
- Watch this episode if you're interested in how Kurn's (rather insignificant) arc from TNG ultimately ends. Otherwise not too much happens here of consequence.

Problems
- How can a minefield prevent entry into a planetary system? A ship can just fly over them, under them, around them, and so forth. It would take massive numbers of mines to completely mine an entire system. Do the mines have full impulse engines or something and fly into unauthorized ships?

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Worf's faux pas in the beginning with Dax.
- Kira's casual sleeping on the runabout.
- Sisko chewing out Worf and Dax.
- The severely damaged Vorcha class cruiser coming out of nowhere.
- Worf: "He decided to kill me while I was looking him right in the eyes and I never saw it! But Kurn did, and he was three meters away!"
- Kira blowing up the Klingons' mines.
- Kurn learning of his new identity.
- Morn Appearances; 1. Walks by Odo and Dax when Dax figures out that Worf is about to kill Kurn. 2. In the final scene.

My Review
This one's been coming for a while. We all knew Kurn sat on the high council and would be ejected after Worf offended Gowron. Now we finally get to see the result of Worf's decision and the effect it has on his family. Additionally, there's an interesting subplot in this episode regarding the Klingon minefield. I rather enjoyed watching Kira and O'Brien flush the quail. ;) Overall the episode is still pretty average, just like the last, but in my opinion quite a bit more exciting and moving. It seems this season is quickly becoming the season of transitional episodes!

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From MJ on 2011-01-14 at 11:39am:
    This one was the last straw for me when it came to DS9's Klingon episodes. In TNG, the Klingons were an interesting and respectable group of characters, and the series explored their culture. Gowron was a formidable opponent but also very honorable, and Kurn was one of the better minor family characters in the series.

    Then comes DS9 in which the Klingons (except Worf) return to the mindless thugs they were in TOS. They suck at battle, as proven in "Way of the Warrior" and "Return to Grace". They act dishonorably on several occasions. Gowron has become a madman, a development that could be justified by his thirst for power but still makes the character one-dimensional.

    And now Kurn. I liked the character in TNG, and it was very disappointing to see it end this way for him. His point of view is easy to understand. Even when Worf went through his dishonor, he was in the Federation and didn't really have to face it every day like Kurn has. And it blows my mind that the Federation would have such a problem with the ritual murder, an honorable act in Klingon culture, but be OK with erasing someone's identity without their consent. This is a major discrepancy that is simply too large for me to ignore.

    Overall, one of my least favorite episodes of DS9.
  • From Jon on 2011-05-26 at 12:59pm:
    In contrast to the other commenter, I rather like that the showed that actions have real-life consequences, in contrast to the real feeling we get that actions are self-contained inside episodes - if that. Worf's actions do have consequences for those left on his home planet, somthing that everyone seems to forget.

    These characters are not islands unto themselves - they've got ties and interestes beyond the bulkheads that can go bad or good depending on what they do.

    I don't think a highly militarized society such as the Klingons would have many detractors in a universe that was rapidly experiencing threats, changes and the doubts that came with the Changling threats. Therefore you can make the case that a military leader (see the TNG episode where Garwon was chosen) that struck a balance would shift towards a more locked-down military political stance to preserve the Empire from percieved threats. Such a mindset isn't that hard for Klingons to fall into.

    And its not like Klingons were really a race of sophisticated or otherwise in TOS that suddenly became 'Vikings in Space' in TNG/DS9....i mean, in ST 6 the whole novelty of General Chang and Gorkon was that they were leaders that quoted Shakespeare and were more politically aware, rather than the 'typical fare'

    And the leadership of the empire IS dominated by a Council that seems persuasive to the winds of the time and can be manipulated or dominated, in this case the latter.
  • From Selador on 2013-04-09 at 5:44pm:
    With regards to how the mines could be effective given that ships could simply navigate around them - the whole point is that they're cloaked. That's why Worf and Kurn have to board the Klingon ship to discover their locations.
  • From Gaius Gracchus on 2021-10-05 at 7:20am:
    The premise of this episode is excellent, "how can Worf bridge a divide between his Klingon culture demands of him and what his life in the Federation will allow?" And the repeated failed attempts for him to do right by Kurn are great. Tony Todd has done a great job acting with pathos this season, first as older Jake in The Visitor and now reprising this role from TNG.

    The conclusion of the episode is highly disappointing. The decision of the Starfleet to inflict the Lovecraftian horror of erasing a man's memory and giving him a new life, just being okay with that, does not sit well. The need to tidily wrap this story up was too strong. I'm not sure what the "best" way to have approached this would have been, but finding a way to let it linger, perhaps to return to the topic in a later season, would have been preferable. This is a product of DS9 not knowing the balance between serial/episodic that it wanted, and it suffers here, wasting a great guest performance.

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