One of the major influences on my wanting to do science fiction was Star Trek: Deep Space 9 (along with Babylon 5, as both were on the air simultaneously).
Something about this show really upped the ante from what Star Trek was on TNG. I know part of it was Roddenberry didn’t allow any starfleet officers to have any character conflicts between one another because “humanity should be beyond that” on TNG, which felt rather stale to me a lot of the time. DS9, as it had a cast of different aliens mixed in with starfleet (even if the chains of command don’t make so much sense in reality).
The result was magic, though I wondered how well it held up over the last 20 years.
Even though the acting feels a little stale on bigger screens and sometimes the effects don’t pan out compared to a lot of what we see now, this show really has a lot of heart.
I remember Season 1 not being my favorite, as I really got hooked once the “dominion war” went into full force as a serial, but this time around I’ve enjoyed watching the writers and actors discover the characters and drill into their introductions.
Part of why people didn’t like the early seasons were the lack of a powerful ship, the Defiant, which gets introduced later. It leaves a lot of these episodes as “bottle episodes” where it feels confined to a station to save budget, which i’m sure was one of the early purposes of the show compared to TNG.
But watching now, seeing Ben Sisko’s emphasis on raising and caring for his son (family) Miles and Keiko’s relationship through a young daughter (more family), it has a charm that other star treks dont with the characters living solitary and selfish lives while pretending to be for a “greater good.” Having the familial element raises the stakes to a large degree, and in a good way.
I’m about halfway through the first season now, but i’ll reflect a little more on it. The way this impacted me really paved the way for The Stars Entwined, as I set the first act on a Palmer Station where I was going to make it a hub for my world in a similar way to how these series (DS9 and B5) acted. So far, the writing’s been solid and I’m pleased with how it’s held up.
Let me know your thoughts on the show!