Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 5 Episode 26

Call to Arms (1)

Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Jun 16, 1997 on Syndicado

Episode Fan Reviews (4)

out of 10
167 votes
  • One of the Better DS9 Episodes

    This season ending cliff hanger is another tense military thriller, which builds the suspense in the first three quarters with dialogue-driven character scenes before cutting loose with the action the last quarter of the hour. It's sort of Deep Space Nine's version of "The Best of Both Worlds", illustrating the eve of battle through the mood of the characters before taking the plunge. But the story has more complexity, with Star Trek having evolved in the seven years since, introducing Bajor, Cardassia, and the Dominion, each with their own agenda.

    As a standalone episode, it's not the best of season five. Despite its richness in character (with most of the important recurring guest stars, or at least most of those related to the war, making an appearance) and its major story developments (some of which cleverly happen off screen, saving time and money) it doesn't tie them all together in a way as satisfying as "The Quickening" or "Trials and Tribulations". There's a diversity of ideas like Lita choosing a wedding dress, Jake writing about the station, and Weyoun and Gul Dukat having a disagreement which don't fit together well enough to have us on the edge of our seat as one scene leads to the next. But it is, of course, grossly unfair to complain about "Call to Arms" not being one of the greatest Star Trek episodes ever when it is, without a doubt, such a fine piece of entertainment and another DS9 gem. Throughout the hour, there's a feeling that important decisions are being made with consequences which will be felt for many episodes to come. By the end, there's a feeling that the series has come full circle, taking us right back to the pilot, but with a reversal of fortune an open ended cliffhanger that sets the table for the next season. For departing writer Robert Hewitt Wolf, it's just about the perfect finish to an impressive body of work. For Deep Space Nine, it's a heck of a way to finish a heck of a season and an effective prelude to Star Trek's longest multi-parter yet.
  • Among the best episodes in the series. A monumental cliffhanger.

    The 8-episode epic that begins here and runs into season 6 may be THE best stretch of DS9, though I'd say that the stretch which closes out season 7 is a serious competitor. It's a testament to the writers and producers that they manage to juggle so many balls in the air, but nevertheless manage to tie it all together so effectively.

    One of the features of these arcs is that they manage to find interesting roles for each of the many characters - this isn't JUST the A- and B-plot scheme that characterized many other DS9 episodes.

    The last 10 or 15 minutes of the episode are particularly gripping. The decision to abandon the station (under siege for the 3rd or 4th time in the series) is a shocker, and of course we have Sisko's speech at the end (reminiscent, to me, of McArthur in the Philippines). Fortunately with DVDs we don't have to wait 3 months to see what happens next.
  • And a worthwhile finale at that!

    What can I say - if anything watch this just for the setpiece battle between the Space station and the Cardie/Dominion fleet.

    We first see the excellent Nog inspired replcating-cloacked mines that will become a pivotal device in the next season. Superb little scenes showing the parting of most of the crew and a sign of the massive change in onscreen relationships awaiting next season. Every character has a bit part in this episode. Why is it that Worf remains speechless every time Jadzia kisses him?! :D My only gripe would only be that they should have shown more battle scenes!

    A very different DS9 awaits for next season.
  • The First Battle of Deep Space Nine

    This episode effectively begins the war with the Dominion. If you want to read about the buildup, you can check out the episode recap or, better yet, Tivo the episode when it's on Spike. The flash point has to do with the Federation mining of the Wormhole. Without access to the Gamma Quadrant, the Dominion will be restricted to its ships and resources in the Alpha Quadrant. Sisko does this, knowing that the Dominion will fight.

    This is truly one of the show's best episodes, largely because of all the plot threads and character details it opens up for next season. Rom and Leeta are married. Worf goes to serve with the Klingons, separating him from his new fiancee, Jadzia. Rom begins his life as a spy. Jake stays on DS9 (now officially Terok Nor) to write about the occupation. Garak comes with Sisko and the others. Sisko makes a rousing and (no pun intended) defiant speech, where he promises that he will be back, and to seal the promise, leaves his baseball on his desk. Dukat gets to strut, Weyoun gets to fret, and Quark gets to suck up to both of them, in one of the episode's lighter moments. It all adds up to one of the most exciting and densely plotted hours of Deep Space Nine yet, and the best Star Trek cliffhanger since "The Best of Both Worlds". Simply put, one of DS9's finest hours.
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