22. For The Cause (4.22)

Synopsis: Sisko discovers that Kasidy Yates may be a Maquis smuggler; Garak takes an interest in Ziyal.

Memory Alpha Summary: The Sisko can’t trust anyone!

Review: A really important episode in the Star Trek canon as it completely solidifies the shift from the Roddenberry idealist Federation to something more familiar to the humans we know and love today. Eddington’s speech about how the Federation’s assimilation of cultures is worse than the Borg’s runs the risk of being bombastic but connects enough to be effective. A little less effective is Sisko’s speech about duty and betrayal, especially since he has a history of sympathizing with the Maquis when he’s not personally affected. 

Regardless, I was definitely caught off guard. Most shows, including Star Trek, generally foreshadow betrayal/defection by introducing a brand new character just the episode before and then pretend like it’s a big deal that the rug is pulled an hour later. Eddington had shown up in several episodes before this and proven his worth to the crew on more than one occasion. And yet his actions were also consistent with a Maquis defector, so it doesn’t feel cheap. Kasidy Yates also being a Maquis sympathizer is realistic, though it’s yet another example of the a Starfleet captain being cursed when it comes to love. I think the writers aren’t sure how to deal with a happy captain. 

The only thing I have a hard time buying is Eddington’s convoluted long-con to get the industrial replicators. It requires about forty things to go exactly right in just a few days. 

And even with all that they still crammed in a B-plot with Garak!  It’s just odd being pigeonholed in this episode as we go from the enormous gravity of the Maquis deception to the comparatively minor relationship budding between Garak and Ziyal. It’s a charming B-plot but should have been reserved for a different episode. 

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