December 2, 2022

Gabbing Geek

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Weekend Trek “Crossfire”

Odo finds his feelings for Kira are getting in the way of his doing his job.

OK, so, a quick observation:  Kira starts a romantic relationship with the First Minister of Bajor, Shakaar, in this episode.  Now, they knew each other before, but is Kira going to end up dating every important man on Bajor before this series is over?  It sure does look that way right about now.

Granted, I like Shakaar a hell of a lot more than Vedek Bareil.

However, despite all that, this episode is really about Odo.  Odo has romantic feelings for Kira, a plot point that came about based solely on how Rene Auberjonois chose to show Odo react to the news Kira was in love with someone.  The writers and producers went from there, and it’s nice to see Odo get another facet to his personality beyond curmudgeonly guy who enforces the law on the station.  It’s a plot point that, to date, has seen Odo only admit it to one other person, and that was the Female Changeling.   Her prediction at the time was a solid like Kira would never return those feelings, and Odo would eventually rejoin the Collective.  Odo’s response was something along the lines like he didn’t really care.

It turns out he cares very much.

Now, Odo’s being in love with a friend who has no idea how he feels, or even when the object of Kira’s affections shares with Odo his own newfound feelings for Kira, there’s not a lot of new ground there.  I am sure I have seen that plot line many times over.  The thing that makes this one different is how Odo handles it.  Odo isn’t really used to feelings, and since his people tend to all merge together into one big sea of Changeling soup, it seems unlikely that anyone in Odo’s whole race has ever had this problem before.  Or even if they have, then it seems unlikely that Odo would even know about it.

As it is, here’s the scenario:  First Minister Shakaar is visiting the station, and there’s some intelligence that a terrorist group might be looking to kill him.  That means a lot of security, and that means Odo with an assist from Worf.  Quite frankly, given what happened the last time Worf and Odo spoke on station security, it’s good to see the two getting along more now.  Odo has a couple of good conversation scenes in this episode, two with Worf, and this one is the friendlier of the two.  Worf and Odo compare their respective jobs and demeanors, with Odo even giving the Klingon some practical advice to get some peace and quiet during off-duty hours while Worf shows respect for how much harder Odo’s job is than Worf’s own on the Enterprise.  Now that Worf seems to have adjusted more to life on the station, he and Odo are getting along much better.

But then there’s the Kira scenes.  Shakaar’s real purpose is to try and negotiate a faster timeframe for Bajor to join the Federation.  But that stuff happens off-screen.  Instead, he’s a man still getting used to being a public figure and finding himself attracted to an old comrade-in-arms.  Kira gushes over the same feelings, and Odo finds himself accompanying the pair as they act like giddy schoolchildren, all while he tries his best to ignore them.  That almost gets the three of them killed when Odo doesn’t check a security clearance the right way, and only his shapeshifting powers keep them from dying.  That leads to a dressing down from Sisko, but as it turns out, Worf managed to catch the culprit on his own.

Worf’s saying Odo should be proud of how his deputies handled things was another nice touch.  The fact that the capture and confession, like the Federation negotiations, took place entirely off-camera was just a good way to keep the focus where it should be, namely on Odo as his life seemed to come crashing down around him and he didn’t know what to do about it.

That actually leads to the second nice conversation, and it happened with Quark, Odo’s downstairs neighbor coming to make a noise complaint late one night when Odo started smashing things in frustration.  Quark, it seems, is the only person on the station to figure out Odo is in love, and that makes a lot of sense.  Quark by professional has to be a very observant fellow, second perhaps only to Odo himself.  If anyone was going to notice his longtime nemesis was acting unusual and figure out why, it would be the guy who always needs to find an angle for profit.  His advice is either tell Kira how he feels or move on.

Odo, oddly, perhaps chooses neither.  He decides to spend less time with Kira and go back to his old habits, but I personally doubt avoidance of the issue will lead to a resolution to said issue.  Besides, why should anyone take romantic advice from a Ferengi?  It may be more noteworthy that Odo is soundproofing his floor right now…

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