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Star Trek: Deep Space Nine

Season 4 Episode 9

The Sword of Kahless

Aired Weekdays 11:00 AM Nov 20, 1995 on Syndicado
out of 10
User Rating
147 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Stardate: 49263.5 Jadzia, Worf and Kor hunt for the ancient Sword of Kahless, which is supposed to unite the Klingon Empire.

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  • Bit of a disappointment, but okay

    "You know what I like about Klingon stories, Commander? Nothing. Lots of people die, and nobody makes any - Quark

    The Klingon equivalent of the search for the Holy Grail, this Worf/Kor/Dax episode is reminiscent of second season's "Blood Oath" but features a more internal conflict. While the premise might sound like Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, it plays out more like Frodo's quest in The Lord of the Rings. Finding the sword is easy (perhaps too easy) but bearing it back to the ship is like taking the One Ring to Mount Doom. It's not just a burden but a divisive force.

    Featuring one character from each of Star Trek's first three live action shows, the episode is a treasure trove of Trek history, with references to quite a few past episodes, yet remains accessible to new fans by giving them enough information to get by. Director LeVar Burton plays up the biblical moments of the episode, from Kor's stories (well told by the lively John Colicos) to the finding of the Sword (which David Bell scores in a way that would make Howard Shore proud).

    Unfortunately, the episode takes place almost exclusively in the cave set, giving it a limited look and scope, and the internal conflicts get tedious by the second half of the episode. While it is fun to see Kor again, and it's great to see Worf get finally get an A story (there is, in fact, no B story) the episode ultimately falls short of its potential, although its conclusion does leave the story open to a sequel; perhaps someday in the future there will be a new Star Trek series that does "The Sword of Kahless 2"!moreless
  • Another lackluster Worf/Klingon episode.

    Early in Star Trek: The Next Generation, episodes exploring Worf and his Klingon heritage tended to be really good ("Sins of the Father", "Reunion", "Redemption", etc). At a certain point that changed and they became average or worse ("Birthright", "Rightful Heir", "Firstborn"). This seemed to carry over to this DS9 episode.

    Jadzia, Kor, and Worf go to find a long-lost Klingon weapon/relic. While they do find it, it turns out that the weapon (not unlike Sauron's Ring) has unpleasant effects on those Klingons who hold it. Despite their initial hopes that acquiring the sword will restore the Klingon Empire to its former glory, the weapon's presence makes them experience delusions of grandeur. They also start fighting over who will keep it. Jadzia plays the exasperated "mom", demanding that her "children" stop bickering.

    The story ends abruptly when Jadzia, running out of patience, zaps both of them with a phaser and beams them aboard the runabout. They beam the Sword into space, realizing that "we aren't ready for it." At the end I'm not sure what we were supposed to get out of this story. This episode actually had a decent premise, but it went nowhere in execution.

    This episode is also noteworthy for being the first Worf-Jadzia plotline, though at this point romance was a long way off.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 (4)

    • Goof: Worf said the "the Rio Grande is available" when asking for a runabout. Yet the Closed captioning says that the Mekong is the ship available.

    • Goof: During the fight with the Klingons, Worf is stabbed in the side of his body, however, in subsequent shots, the wound is on his shoulder.

    • Nitpick: At the beginning of the episode, Quark is complaining about Kor's exaggerated battle stories, saying that there is no profit to be found in them. However, they seem to be attracting a fair few people to his bar, thus making him a profit.

    • Nitpick: It is stated at the end of the season three episode "Distant Voices", that Lethean telepathic attacks are almost always fatal, yet Kor manages to survive one with only a slight disorientation.

  • QUOTES (9)

    • Kor: The sword will unite us if its held in the hands of a true Klingon, not a politician like Gowron, or some toothless figurehead like the Emperor. The sword must rest in the hands of someone who has been hardened by battle, pure of heart, who understands loyalty and honor. A warrior like Kang and Koloth.
      Worf: Someone like you?
      Kor: The Empire could do far worse.

    • Kor: Damn that Ferengi and his replicated bloodwine!

    • Kor: (reaching for the Sword of Kahless) Just let me hold it one more time.
      Worf: (stopping him) The Sword is not meant for us! It was never our destiny to find it.

    • Kor: (Jadzia shoots Worf, who is in a clinch with Kor) Dax, I knew in the end you'd choose me! We're blood brothers...
      Jadzia: (interrupting) Be quiet! (she shoots Kor)

    • Worf: A true warrior has no need to exaggerate his feats.
      Kor: Well, you better hope that I exaggerate, or when they start singing songs about this quest and come to your verse, it will be 'And Worf came along.'

    • Jadzia: I'd like you to meet our strategic operations officer, Commander Worf.
      Kor: Ah, Worf the traitor. The pariah, the lowest of the low... it's a pleasure to meet you. Any enemy of Gowron and the High Council is a friend of mine.

    • Kor: Did you see the look on the face of that Klingon I killed? It was as if he understood the honor bestowed upon him. The first man in a thousand years to be killed by the Sword of Kahless!
      Jadzia: I'm sure he was very proud.

    • Worf: It would be an honor to accompany you... if you'll have me.
      Jadzia: We could use another strong arm...
      Kor: And a stout heart. Besides, it will annoy Gowron.

    • Quark: You know what I like about Klingon stories, Commander? Nothing. Lots of people die and nobody makes a profit.

  • NOTES (6)


    • Ali Baba And The Forty Thieves

      When the runabout is approaching the wormhole, Kor lifts up his arms and moves his hand's apart, gesturing for the wormhole to open. Ali Baba does the same thing, whilst saying the magic words "open sesame", when he opens the magical cave containing the stolen treasure.