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Star Trek DS9 - Season 6 - Episode 16

Star Trek DS9 - 6x16 - Change of Heart

Originally Aired: 1998-3-4

Synopsis:
Worf must choose between Starfleet duty and his wife. [DVD]

My Rating - 5

Fan Rating Average - 6.53

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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.
- A decently entertaining story, but not relevant to the overarching story of DS9.

Problems
- So tricorders don't work in the jungle, but Worf uses one to scan Jadzia to determine her medical status?

Factoids
None

Remarkable Scenes
- Worf and O'Brien judging Tongo.
- Worf and Dax discussing their honeymoon plans. Worf wanted to go to the Vulcan Forge. Nice reference to TAS: Yesteryear, and other episodes.
- Worf: "I have a sense of humor! On the Enterprise I was considered to be quite amusing." Dax: "That must have been one dull ship." Worf: "That is a joke! I get it! It is not funny. But I get it."
- O'Brien and Bashir playing Tongo.
- Bashir playing Quark at Tongo. I love how Quark manipulated Bashir into losing by appealing to his love for Dax.
- Worf explaining to Sisko his motives for leaving Lasaran behind and saving Jadzia.

My Review
A moving story showing how dedicated Worf is to his wife. It must have been incredibly difficult for Worf to make the choice between saving family and saving the mission, and I'm sure it was hard to have Sisko chew him out in the end like that. I rather liked how Sisko told him he would have done the same thing though. The B plot regarding Quark and his unending Tongo winning streak was nice as well for some light hearted humor to cheer up a depressing story. I just wish that Quark had actually lost in the end instead of manipulating Bashir so cruelly. In the end, it ended up being fairly average and borderline filler.

The following are comments submitted by my readers.

  • From Pete Miller on 2006-07-16 at 11:48pm:
    Tongo is such a wonderful game! All the writers kept on adding more rules to it as the show progressed until it eventually became the most ridiculously complex game ever devised. No one on the Star Trek crew even fully understands it.

    However, the writers and directors always make it appear to be easy to understand and commonly played in the show, which is a kind of inside joke. For example, Bashir takes one look at the padd of the rules of Tongo and is like "oh okay, I get it now", as if it's tic tac toe. I also love how they keep on coming up with hands as the show progresses, like the "complete monopoly". What a Ferengi game!!!
  • From MJ on 2011-02-17 at 12:29pm:
    The premise of this episode was a bit hard to accept. Surely Starfleet is aware of the potential problems in sending a husband and wife together on a life-and-death mission...seems like this kind of thing would've been prohibited long before Dax and Worf. And even if Starfleet didn't, I would think Sisko is aware of such problems given his own loss and wouldn't allow it.

    So that knocks it down a few pegs in my view. The dialogue between Worf and Dax in the shuttle about honeymoon plans, Worf's sense of humor, etc. was very funny. It was nice to see some Worf as something other than a stern warrior. And on the planet, they had some touching moments.

    As is typical for DS9, everything was wrapped up very quickly at the end. But it was especially bad here, because this episode completely lacks a denouement. I was hoping for some kind of encounter with Lasaran or failing that, some other climactic event, but nothing. The episode builds up to Worf's rather strange change of heart moment in the jungle, then fast forward to him on the station with Sisko and Lasaran is dead.

    This is a below average episode, with even the subplot accomplishing nothing.
  • From Christopher Wright on 2011-12-21 at 6:24pm:
    Did anyone else notice Worf's line about being a "married man" sounded a lot like his "But, Captain, I am not a merry man!" Line from that Robin Hood TNG episode?
  • From Bronn on 2013-07-22 at 2:18am:
    Those darned anti-coagulants again. They've shown up a couple of times. Jem'Hadar weapons are just about the only weapons on the show that are consistently dangerous. People sometimes get shot by phasers set on kill and end up with just second degree burns on their shoulder.

    It's a shame they didn't kill off Jadzia Dax here. It would have had a ton more impactful than what did end up happening. And even though Worf is often fatalistic, he spent so much time on the Enterprise that I figure he'd attempt to escape the moral dilemma-to find a way to save Jadzia AND complete the mission. He could have thought he'd be able to get back to the runabout and somehow use the transporter. It would have been quite effective for him to have been in denial until the absolute last minute, realizing he'd left his wife behind to die alone.

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