Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 3 Episode 13

Life Support

2
Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Jan 30, 1995 on Syndicado
6.9
out of 10
User Rating
138 votes
2

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

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Stardate: 48498.4

When Vedek Bareil is critically injured during negotiations, the only thing that will keep him alive long enough to complete the meetings is a radical operation that will turn him into a half-man, half-machine.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Rare misfire from writer Ron Moore

    5.5
    The idea of gradually replacing parts of a man until he's no longer the original man is an interesting story device (as proven by Darth Vader) but it doesn't quite work here, being shoehorned into the ongoing Bajoran political thread last seen in second season's "The Collaborator". The real problem is that the essence of the story is overwhelmed by Kai Winn and the Treaty of MacGuffin. To make matters worse, a lighthearted Jake and Nog B story is thrown in as filler. (The two get into a fight over girls). Even the show's writers have admitted that this doesn't play well against the A story, as their tone's conflict. Perplexingly, Kira's reaction to the whole Bareil situation, which would go well with the main story, is mostly buried in the script.



    In the end, "Life Support" feels like a filler episode with a serious consequence, an awkward dichotomy and rare misfire from teleplay writer Ron Moore.

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  • Somewhat slow, but emotionally rich at the end.

    7.5
    I'm somewhat indifferent to Bareil's character, so his disappearance from the show was not a big loss. That said, this is not a bad farewell, as his slow death in the line of duty provides shades of grey for hitherto unlikeable Kai Winn, ethical dilemmas for Dr. Bashir, and of course a final touching scene for Major Kira.



    The episode's best scenes really come near the end - Bashir's intense confrontation with the Kai, Bareil's creepy behavior after his operation, and that parting scene with Kira.



    The plot with Jake and Nog is frankly not that interesting, and doesn't fit well with the episode's tone. But does provide the classic "What a Tholian Looks Like" joke.moreless
Armin Shimerman

Armin Shimerman

Quark

Terry Farrell

Terry Farrell

Lt./Lt. Commander Jadzia Dax (Season 1-6)

Rene Auberjonois

Rene Auberjonois

Constable Odo

Nana Visitor

Nana Visitor

Major/Colonel/Commander Kira Nerys

Avery Brooks

Avery Brooks

Commander/Captain Benjamin Sisko

Alexander Siddig

Alexander Siddig

Dr. Julian Bashir

Lark Voorhies

Lark Voorhies

Leanne

Guest Star

Andrew Prine

Andrew Prine

Legate Turrel

Guest Star

Kevin Carr

Kevin Carr

Bajoran

Guest Star

Philip Anglim

Philip Anglim

Vedek Bareil

Recurring Role

Louise Fletcher

Louise Fletcher

Kai Winn

Recurring Role

Aron Eisenberg

Aron Eisenberg

Nog

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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