Synopsis: Tired of being on the losing end of the war, Captain Sisko convinces Starfleet Command to launch a fleet of starships to retake Deep Space 9 and stop the Dominion destroying the Wormhole minefield. Meanwhile, time may be running out for Rom.
Review: Man, this eight episode Dominion War arc was underwhelming. Favor the Bold provides a pretty decent set up with the cliffhanger of a major battle, but the drama fails to deliver.
There’s so much about this space fight that just feels off. Perhaps it’s the banal dialogue between the crew, with the underwhelming subplot of O’Brien being Nog’s battle mentor. Perhaps it’s the super crowded, rapid-fire, intense battle scenes interspersed with shots of the bridge crew giving each other battle orders in slow-motion. I know I spent a lot of time thinking about the physics of how battles would work in space rather than the drama happening on screen, which I think speaks to how little I was interested in the battle. And then Klingons come to save the day, but the previous dialogue made it seem like even if Martok and Worf did convince Gowron to help that it would take them longer than that to arrive; as it stood in the episode, their arrival definitely had a deus ex machina feel even if we knew they could be coming.
As far everything else going on…I think there may have been too much focus on having every recurring character get lines and not enough time developing a strong dramatic moment. I don’t care about Nog and Leeta here. I don’t care about Garak here (though at least there’s no wasted subplot for him). I don’t care about the arguments between Weyoun and Dukat. And I really don’t care about Tora Ziyal; while the introduction over this long arc of her art career was nice, her only purpose for this two-part episode is to be a pawn between Kira and Dukat. So when she is murdered by Dumar I didn’t feel anything.
Finally, Odo’s dialogue with the Founder is repetitive and the opposite of dramatic. His turn back to helping Kira is the least surprising or interesting part of the episode.
That said, there are things I appreciate. The Starfleet admirals are reasonable and supportive, which is a nice change from most of TNG. And the ending with Dukat becoming a crumbling mess was a nice touch. Giving the archenemy real conflicting motivations was necessary.