23. what you leave behind (7.25, 7.26)

Synopsis: In this last adventure, the Federation Alliance prepares a final invasion of Cardassia. Meanwhile on Bajor, Kai Winn releases the Pah-wraiths from the Fire Caves which threatens the safety of not only Bajor, but the entire Alpha Quadrant.

Memory Alpha Summary: Gotta put your behind in the past

Review: The finale suffers a bit from everything that came before it, in that the war has just dragged on too long and space battles lack the intrigue they would have if there hadn’t been so many of them. That said, this episode wraps up everything pretty much as perfect as one could have.

I think the home run of this episode is how they handled The Founders.  Odo could have just impersonated the Female Changeling and ordered all the troops to stand down.  Instead he sacrificed his relationship with Kira to help his people and help save millions of lives in both the Alpha and Gamma quadrants.  It made sense for Odo’s character development as well.  

Otherwise, the rest of the goodbyes were handled well:  Garak’s bittersweet return home and O’Brien finally getting away from twelve years of suffering to return home as well.  

As for the end of the Sisko’s role as Emissary, I actually felt satisfied with how they handled it.  For seven years the Prophets have been giving him vague and confusing direction, but at least his role to be with them makes some sense given what had to be done with Dukat, Winn, and the Pa-Wraiths.  I also appreciate that Avery Brooks asked that his character be allowed to return in the future “in a year, maybe yesterday” as he didn’t want a black man leaving his pregnant wife behind.  

Jake missing his dad being the final scene is fitting (given that the first episode was about him missing his mom), but holy hell how sad for Jake.  He’s now around to hang with his stepmom and his half-sibling.  

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