Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 4 Episode 15

Sons of Mogh

Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Feb 12, 1996 on Syndicado
out of 10
User Rating
146 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Stardate: 49556.2 When Kurn, Worf's brother, comes to Deep Space Nine, he asks Worf to kill him as his family has been dishonored by Worf's actions, and he can't live with the shame.

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  • So long, Kurn

    Star Trek finishes up with Worf's brother, Kurn, in this Klingon episode that also features the beginning of Worf's relationship with Dax. It's a daring episode that's more about Worf and his choices than anything. Using Kurn as an example of a true Klingon, the episode contrasts the brothers to illustrate how Worf is different and is on his own unique path. TNG's "Sins of the Father", also written by Ron Moore, begins in a similar fashion but morphs into a celebration of Worf's Klingon side. Here, the emphasis is on his human side and his future outside the Empire.

    As a study of Worf's character, the episode is a success. As a Kurn episode, it's a disappointment. Tony Todd (Kurn) is fine (though it's certainly not his best performance of the season) But his only purpose in the episode is to give Worf something to play against, and the way Kurn's story is tied up at the end is a copout and a disappointment.moreless
  • Worf's brother becomes convinced that life is no longer worth living.

    Worf's brother Kurn comes to DS9 to demand that Worf kill him. Apparently Worf's estrangement from the Klingon leadership has disgraced his family, and Kurn views death as the only remaining honorable option. Worf almost manages to kill Kurn, but is stopped at the last moment by Jadzia and Odo. Worf realizes that killing his brother is a mistake and fishes around for alternatives. Eventually he realizes he can save his brother's life -- but only by losing him forever.

    I thought there were some interesting ideas in this episode -- when a loved one becomes convinced that life is no longer worth living, how do you persuade him/her against it? To save a loved one's life, would you be willing to give them up forever? Was Worf's choice to side with the Federation against his own people, honorable in the abstract but disastrous to his family, just a case of moral vanity?

    All great questions, and I wouldn't say the episode did a poor job of exploring them. But for whatever reason, it didn't really click with me. Others will probably feel differently.

    One last note: I think this is the first episode to hint at potential romance between Jadzia and Worf.moreless
  • Pointless episode makes Worf seem crazy.

    Its not the first time in Worf's career that he's been confronted with killing a Klingon -- but his brother, in a Klingon ritual? Sure, this is in character with the Klingons in general, but I'd expect Worf to be not so eager to execute his own brother!

    In the original script Worf refuses to carry out the ritual until the end. An ambiguous ending where we aren't sure whether or not Worf had actually killed Kurn would had been far favourable to wiping his memory. Bashir is especially out of character for agreeing to do harm to a patient, especially without his knowledge or consent. This episode also eliminates Kurn (as we know him) from returning as a guest star in future stories without a very good reason. We all know Kurn's honour could had been restored some other way. I just found this episode to be extremely disappointing.moreless
  • Well-written character development for Worf also featuring interesting direction from David Livingstone

    Worf's brother Kurn arrives at the station, suffering the dishonor that his brother has bought upon his entire family - asking that Worf kill him, in the ritual act of Mauk-to'Vor, to bring him honor.

    Re-watching the episode recently, I remembered having seen it several years ago, and again being struck by some of the unusual camera angles used. For example, when Worf visits Kurn in the infirmary, Kurn is enclosed within an intensive care bed, Cardassian in design, and very triangular. The camera reflects this with diagonal angles.

    Certainly a high point in an excellent series for Deep Space Nine.moreless
Armin Shimerman

Armin Shimerman


Terry Farrell

Terry Farrell

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

Michael Dorn

Michael Dorn

Lt. Commander Worf (Season 4-7)

Rene Auberjonois

Rene Auberjonois

Constable Odo

Nana Visitor

Nana Visitor

Major/Colonel/Commander Kira Nerys

Avery Brooks

Avery Brooks

Commander/Captain Benjamin Sisko

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (5)

    • This episode marks the end to Worf's last connection to Klingons until he becomes a part of the House of Martok.

    • Nitpick: Worf mentions at the end that he has no family. He may be just wanting to make the whole break between his brother and himself complete. But he is forgetting about his son Alexander. Ron Moore suggested that Worf's statement could also be a Freudian slip, suggesting that Worf has distanced himself physchologically from Alexander.

    • Time Index 22:27. The ship docked looks very similar to a Star Destroyer from Star Wars.

    • Goof: Kurn's prosthetic nose comes loose from his Kingon make-up. When he talks in the Infirmary, you can see it wiggle freely.

    • Nitpick: Given Kurn's backing of Worf after his discommendation, and the House Of Mogh's honor being restored after standing up to other treasonous members of the High Council, Kurn's "suicide" over dishonor to his family's name, in the midst of yet another corrupt Klingon administration, is very out of character.

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Rodek (formally Kurn): Who are you?
      Worf: I am Worf.
      Rodek: Are you part of my family?
      Worf: I have no family.

    • Worf: For a long time I have tried to walk the line between the Empire and the Federation. I told myself I could live in either world – that it was my choice. But the truth is I can not go back to the Empire.

    • Worf: He decided to kill me while I was looking him right in the eyes, and I never saw it. But Kurn did, and he was three meters away.
      Dax: Worf, I don't think you can tell someone's going to kill you by looking at them.
      Worf: A Klingon can. It is an instinct. The ability to look someone in the eyes and see the decision to kill. An instinct I no longer have.

    • Odo: I can appreciate how difficult it must be for you to be asking for a favor, especially from me. Very well. Have Kurn report here tomorrow morning.
      Worf: I am indebted to you.
      Odo: Yes, you are. (Worf turns to leave) And Mr. Worf? You'll find I'm a man who collect on his debts.

    • Odo: A man with a death wish is a danger not only to himself, but to the rest of his team.

  • NOTES (3)