Star Trek: Deep Space Nine-Complete Season 2 (1994)

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Released 1-Jul-2003

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category New Age Main Menu Audio & Animation
Featurette-New Frontiers: The Story of Deep Space Nine
Featurette-Michael Westmore's Aliens
Featurette-Deep Space Nine Sketchbook
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 01
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 02 - Shadowplay
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 03 - Crossover
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 04 - Invasive Procedures
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 05 - The Siege
Featurette-Quark's Story
Featurette-Crew Dossier: Jadzia Dax
Featurette-New Station, New Ships
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 06 - Rules of Acquisition
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 07 - Blood Oath
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 08- Crossover
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 09 - The Wire
Easter Egg-Section 31, Hidden File 10 - The Circle
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1994
Running Time 1133:40 (Case: 1182)
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered
Multi Disc Set (7)
Cast & Crew
Start Up Language Select Then Menu
Region Coding 4 Directed By Michael Piller
Steven Ira Behr
David Livingston
Kim Friedman
Studio
Distributor

Paramount Home Entertainment
Starring Avery Brooks
Rene Auberjonois
Nana Visitor
Michael Dorn
Terry Farrell
Cirroc Lofton
Colm Meaney
Armin Shimerman
Alexander Siddig
Nicole de Boer
Case Custom Packaging
RPI $234.95 Music Paul Baillargeon
David Bell
Jay Chattaway


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
German Dolby Digital 5.1 (384Kb/s)
French Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Italian Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Spanish Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
Danish
German
Spanish
French
Italian
Dutch
Norwegian
Swedish
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    I guess most readers coming into this review of the 2nd Season of Deep Space Nine will be familiar with the concept and contents of Season One, but just in case you're not, here's a quick refresher. Deep Space Nine was built by the Cardassians, a war-like people looking something like marine Klingons, for the purpose of  processing uridium ore mined on the neighbouring planet of Bajor. First met in Star Trek - The Next Generation Season 4, the Cardassians believe in the subjugation of lesser peoples, such as the deeply spiritual Bajori. After the Cardassians withdrew from DS9, the station was handed over to the Bajori but occupied and run by the Federation under the leadership of Starfleet Commander Sisko. It falls to the commander to keep the peace between the differing races on board and maintain an uneasy truce with the Cardassians and try to ease the mistrust of the neighbouring Bajori. Major Nerys Kira is the Bajori emissary on DS9 and her views, coloured by 26 years of oppression by the Cardassians, often brings her into conflict with Sisko. After the station was moved near to a newly discovered wormhole, linking to the Gamma Quadrant, it also achieved considerable strategic importance.

    The 2nd Season is where the writers start to get to grips with the characters who start to develop an energy and a life of their own. Sisko is a builder, who tackles problems and doesn't run away from them. Jadzia Dax, not just the drop-dead gorgeous Starfleet officer, but a bit of a rebel who likes to live life to the extreme with numerous romantic brushes, but no deep and meaningful relationship (yet) - not afraid to flirt, gamble with the Ferengi or start the day off with some all-in wrestling with an obliging alien. Odo,  the alien outside observer of humanity - like Data in Next Generation, struggling to some to terms with his own feelings by observing everyday life, usually to his disgust! And finally Dr Bashir, the Robbie Williams look-alike who excelled in everything at The Academy and Medical School but is easily the most naive and inexperienced of the crew - a true inter-stellar tenderfoot. We're also exposed to more aspects of the Cardassian and Bajoran peoples - poles apart culturally - and mention is made of The Dominion for the first time, with a final episode's exposure to their henchmen, the Jem'Hadar.

    OK - brace yourselves - there's over 19 hours of viewing on these 7 discs or just under 3 hours per disc. Each episode is 43:36 give or take a couple of seconds, which is basically a 45:00 episode in NTSC with 4% PAL speedup (if anyone is interested!)- the disc time total is given below:

Disc 1 - 174:27

    Disc 1 of 7 of the 1st Season comprises a 3-part story which is pretty much standard fare and a little predictable, but it does allow an insight into some of the spiritual practices and principles of the Bajori. The 4th episode is a standalone story with some good action series and imaginative plot - definitely the pick of the bunch. As can be seen from the detailed credits below, screenwriters and directors vary and although the characters are consistent, quality of storyline and direction are not. Easily the best screenplay, for my money, comes from Robert Hewitt Wolffe and key episodes can be spotted by Executive Producers Michael Spiller or Ira Steven Behr's input.

    Episode 21 - The Homecoming  -  Screenplay: Jeri Taylor & Ira Steven Behr - Director: Winrich Kolbe - Screened: 26-Sep-93

        Quark happens upon a Bajoran earring. Using it as an excuse for a (short-lived) visit to Major Kira's quarters, it is recognised as belonging to Bajoran hero and resistance fighter Li Nalas - long believed dead. Kira persuades Commander Sisko to allow her to mount a mission to a Cardassia IV concentration camp to rescue Li Nalas and set him up as leader to unite the warring Bajoran factions.

    Episode 22 - The Circle - Screenplay: Peter Allan Fields - Director: Coreg Allen - Screened: 3-Oct-03

        Li Nas takes up a position on Deep Space 9 replacing Major Kira who returns to Bajor. The fundamentalist xenophobic Bajoran group known as The Circle becomes more overt in its struggle to overthrow the provisional government on Bajor, helped by high-ranking officials. Kira consults the 3rd Orb of Prophecy and Change and sees herself closely linked with spiritual elder Vedek Bareil. Deep Space 9 comes under threat from the Bajoran coup and Starfleet Command orders its evacuation. Odo and Quark form an unlikely alliance to investigate arms running to the circle under the guise of Kressari supply ships.

    Episode 23 - The Siege - Screenplay: Michael Piller - Director: Winrich Kolbe - Screened: 10-Oct-93

        Deep Space 9 personnel are evacuated, leaving behind Sisko and a small group of key personnel to resist assault ships launched from the coup on Bajor. Hope rests with Nira to present evidence of Cardassian involvement in the coup to the provisional government and Li Nas to rally support against the power-hungry coup leader.

    Episode 24 - Invasive Procedures - Screenplay: John Whelpley  -  Director: Les Landau - Screened: 17-Oct-93

        During a plasma storm, an apparently ailing ship is allowed to dock only to allow a duo of mercenary Klingons (T'Kar played by Tim Russ, later to star as Tuvok in Voyager), a Trill (played by guest star John Glover) and his doting, ex-prostitute, girlfriend aboard. The crew are horrified when it becomes apparent that the reason for their visit is to steal the symbiot of fellow Trill and crew-member Jadzia Dax, without which she will die. Quark has a chance to make up for his initial greed-motivated treachery, which initially allowed the marauders to gain access to DS9.

Disc 2 - 174:18

    Disc 2 starts to get more interesting after a fairly tame start to the Season with good quality stand-alone stories exploring the cultural aspects of the various species that comprise the crew and visitors.

    Episode 25 - Cardassians - Screenplay: James Crocker - Director: Cliff Bole - Screened: 24-Oct-93 - Stardate: 47177.2

        A Cardassian boy, apparently orphaned after the departure of the Cardassian occupation of Bajor, arrives on DS9 with his Bajoran foster father. Investigation by Dr Bashir and station Cardassian tailor Garak uncovers a political plot between the boy's natural father and former Cardassian station commander Gul Dukat. A good standalone episode featuring Bashir and Garak who has hidden talents besides cutting a straight line in cloth.

    Episode 26 - Melora - Screenplay: Evan Carlos Somers , Steven Baum and James Crocker - Director: Winrich Kolbe - Screened: 31-Oct-93 - Stardate: 47229.1

        Another episode largely featuring the station doctor, Bashir and introducing Melora, an Elaysian used to zero-gravity existence. Bashir falls in loves and thinks he can enable Melora to live independently in gravity - after the zero-gravity love scene, I'm not sure why he'd bother! Meantime, Fallit Kot, an old business associate of Quark's pays the station a visit with ideas of payback on his mind...

    Episode 27 - Rules of Acquisition - Screenplay: Ira Steven Behr - Director: David Livingston - Screened: 7-Nov-93

        The Ferengi big-chief Zek unexpectedly arrives on the station to appoint Quark as chief negotiator with one of the first races out of the Gamma Quadrant, the Dosi. Quark has a smart accomplice well versed in the 258 Rules of Acquisition, a young Ferengi waiter from his bar, Pel, who isn't all he seems. In this episode we also have mention of the Dominion for the first time, the pre-eminent authority in the uncharted and unknown Gamma Quadrant. Dax also turns out to be a Ferengiphile and masterful at the high-stakes gambling game of Tongo.

    Episode 28 - Necessary Evil - Screenplay: Peter Allan Fields Director: James Conway - Screened: 14-Nov-93 - Stardate: 47282.5

        Odo features largely in this episode when we learn how the shape-shifter became security officer during the Cardassian occupation of DS9. Investigating a murder attempt on Quark leads to frequent flash-backs to the Cardassian period, solves an old murder case and reveals a hidden secret about an old friend and member of DS9.

Disc 3 - 174:20

    This disc presents isolated episodes of life and events on the ship without special relevance to the big picture or particularly exciting stories.

    Episode 29 - Second Sight - Screenplay: Mark Gehred-O'Connell - Director: Alexander Singer - Screened: 21-Nov-93 - Stardate: 47329.4

        Commander Sisko feels  the loss of his long-dead wife and can't sleep. The gorgeous Fenna appears on the promenade and love blossoms - problem is, Sisko can't find out where she came from, or who she is .... and she bears an uncanny resemblance to the wife of visiting terra-former Sevetik.

    Episode 30 - Sanctuary - Screenplay: Frederick Rappaport - Director: Les Landau    Screened: 28-Nov-03 - Stardate: 47391.2

        A group of 4 disheveled farmers appears on an ailing spaceship through the wormhole from the Gamma Quadrant. Just before their ship explodes they are rescued by DS9 and it turns out that they are Skrreeans fleeing from subjugation by The Dominion. Trouble is, there are 3 million more of them to follow and they think that Bajor is Kentanna, their promised land ... Star Trek:TOS's Commander Chekov's son, Andrew Kernig, appears as one of the Skrreean troublesome teenagers.

    Episode 31 - Rivals - Screenplay: Joe Menosky - Director: David Livingston - Screened: 2-Jan-94

        Strange things are happening aboard DS9, long-lost programs are found and lost, reports and their backups vanish and against all odds Chief O'Brien is winning a match of Racquetball against former medical school champion, Julian Bashir. Could it be anything to do with a small gambling toy brought onboard by an alien tucked away in Odo's lockup? Or is it all chance that 80% of subatomic positrons have adopted a clockwise spin?

    Episode 32 - The Alternate - Screenplay: Bill Dial - Director: David Carson - Screened: 9-Jan-94 - Stardate: 47361.7

        Featuring Odo and Dr Mora Pol, a Bajoran scientist who initially researched and communicated with Odo whilst he was still an amorphic blob. Dr Pol visits DS9 with news of having located DNA similar to Odo's on a newly surveyed planet in the Gamma Quadrant. Odo, Dax and Dr Pol set out in a runabout to visit the planet to search for clues as to Odo's origin and species. Whilst on the planet they discover a strange obelisk and are exposed to a toxic gas. Upon return to DS9, Dr Pol pressurises Odo to return with him to his research lab on Bajor, with unforeseen consequences...

Disk 4 - 174:32

    A collection of unrelated episodes here with more exploration of neighbouring space and the Gamma Quadrant utilising the station's runabouts, small inter-stellar craft introduced 2 years before. We continue development of personalities and their interplay with some imaginative stories.

    Episode 33 - Armageddon Game - Screenplay: Morgan Gendel , Ira Steven Behr, James Crocker - Director: Winrich Kolbe Screened: 30-Jan-94

        Chief O'Brien and Doctor Bashir are assigned to an orbiting space-lab to help find a way to destroy the 'Harvesters' - deadly biomechanical disruptors used in a centuries-long war between the T'Lari and Kelleruns, now at peace. Sadly DS9 is told that both the Chief and Bahir perished in a radiation pulse booby trap accidentally triggered by O'Brien. Only Keiko, the Chief's wife believes they are not dead, so Commander Sisko and Jadzia Dax leave to investigate ... This episode explores Bashir and the Chief's differing views on women and marriage and reveals Bashir's love for a long-lost Parisian ballet dancer.

    Episode 34 - Whispers -  Screenplay: Paul Cole - Director: Les Landau - Screened: 6-Feb-94 - Stardate: 47581.2

        Chief O'Brien returns from extensive security meetings with the Paradans about their forthcoming peace talks aboard DS9 - he finds everyone, though superficially friendly, seemingly guarded and even his wife, Keito, and daughter act strangely towards him. After managing to break into secure data logs he finds Paradan rebels have been in contact with the Commander and he fears the worst - after attempts are made to capture him, he manages to escape in a runabout and track Sisko and crew to a rebel camp on Parada II - a good story and a nice twist I didn't see coming.

    Episode 35 - Paradise -  Screenplay: Jeff King, Richard Manning, Hans Beimler - Director: Corey Allen - Screened: 13-Feb-94 - Stardate: 47573.1

        O'Brien and Sisko are on reconnaissance for a habitable planet in the Orellius system when they happen upon some life forms upon a supposedly uninhabited planet. Upon beaming down they find all their electronic equipment non-functional, probably as a result of a low-level duonetic field. They meet with  the strong-minded ex-Starfleet scientist Alexis who survived a crash with fellow settlers and crew members 10 years ago. O'Brien and Sisko are encouraged to renounce their techo-background in favour of the simple life embracing core values.

    Episode 36 - Shadowplay - Screenplay: Robert Hewitt - Director: Robert Sheerer - Screened: 20-Feb-94 - Stardate: 47603.3

        Jadzia Dax and Odo are sent to investigate a mysterious particle field on the other side of the wormhole which is found to consist of dense omicron particles emanating from a supposedly uninhabited planet. Beaming down to the source they find a small village where people have been mysteriously disappearing. Meantime, Jake Sisko starts his first job with Chief O'Brien and finds the courage to explain to his dad that he might not wish a future with Starfleet. Vedak Bareil pays an unsuspected visit to DS9 much to the surprise and delight of Major Nira and romance blossoms ... but could this have anything to do with Quark getting up to mischief whilst Constable Odo is away?

Disk 5 - 174:24

    Good stories and action.

    Episode 37 - Playing God - Screenplay: Jim Trombetta, Michael Piller - Director: David Livingston - Screened: 27-Feb-94

        Arjin, a Trill hopeful for union with a symbiot arrives on DS9. The trouble is, only 300 out of 5000 hopefuls are chosen, and he is assigned to Dax, who in his previous incarnation as Curzon was the terror of initiates and actually recommended Jadzia as being unsuitable - but as Jadzia points out she is Jadzia Dax and not Curzon Dax and she has her own different ideas on life. After a trip into the Gamma Quadrant, Arjin and Jadzia encounter a subspace pocket which leaves a blob of protoplasm draped across the starboard nacelle. On return to DS9 it turns out that the protoplasm is a rapidly expanding embryonal universe complete with signs of intelligent life - the problem is that it is enlarging at an alarming rate.... Meantime Chief O'Brien tackles the problems of Cardassian voles. An interesting episode highlighting some of the enigmas of Jadzia - not unsurprising considering she harbours a symbiot with 7 previous life experiences!

    Episode 38 - Profit and Loss - Screenplay: Flip Kobler, Cindy Marcus - Director: Robert Wiemer - Screened: 20-Mar-94

        A crippled Cardassian spaceship is rescued by DS9 and found to contain Cardassian political scientist, Professor Natima Lang and 2 of her students Rekelen and Hogue. It turns out that Natima is Quark's long lost love and that she is on the run from the Cardassian military authorities. An interesting episode exploring Quark and his relationship with Odo. It also reveals more about Cardassian politics and dark-horse Garak, the exiled Cardassian station's tailor.

    Episode 39 - Blood Oath - Screenplay: Peter Allan Fields - Director: Winrich Kolbe - Screened: 27-Mar-94

        3 aging Klingon warriors converge on DS9, much to Odo's consternation. It turns out that Curzon Dax was godfather to one of their sons and that all 4  swore a blood oath to kill The Albino, a former buccaneer that used to prey on Klingon colonies. Jadzia Dax has to decide whether Curzon's blood oath binds her and if she will join the Klingons on their mission of revenge... A seminal episode that ties in much of history including original Star Trek episodes in which the 3 Klingons featured and illustrates aspects of their brotherhood and history.

    Episode 40 - The Maquis (1) - Screenplay: James Crocker - Director: David Livingston - Screened: 24-Apr-94

        A Cardassian cargo ship is blown up by saboteurs on DS9 and Gul Dukat shows up unexpectedly to help investigate. He alleges that Starfleet colonists, who stayed behind in Cardassian territory after the treaty between Starfleet and the Cardassian Central Command, have been arming themselves and attacking Cardassian interests. Commander Sisko meets up with old friend Commander Cal Hudson to investigate counter-allegations of Cardassian gun-running to their colonies and attacks on Starfleet colonists. Quark attempts seduction of an attractive young Vulcan woman, Sakonna, who wishes to do business with him. Finally, Gul Dukat is kidnapped from onboard DS9 and the threat of Cardassian reprisals looms...

Disk 6 - 174:26

    The final of the Maquis episodes and some good standalone stories filling in lots of historical information about Bajor and Cardassia.

    Episode 41 - The Maquis (2) - Screenplay: Ira Steven Behr - Director: Corey Allen - Screened: 1-May-94

        Claims and counter claims of attacks on Cardassians and humans in the colonies together with the search for Gul Dukat leads Commander Sisko into The Badlands, an asteroid belt plagued by plasma storms. It transpires that a group of human renegades calling themselves The Maquis plan an attack on a Cardassian weapons depot. Sisko's attempts to avert all-out war leads him into personal danger and direct confrontation with an old friend. Quark engages in a logical debate with the Vulcan - and wins! - much to the benefit of the Good Guys. Good action episode documenting the origin of the Maquis who feature in The Voyager series. We're also exposed to Sisko's abilities as a ship, rather than station commander, foreshadowing his future starship command...

    Episode 42 - The Wire - Screenplay: Robert Hewitt Wolfe - Director: Kim Friedman - Screened: 8-May-94

        Dr Bashir notes, during one of their weekly lunch sessions, that Barak looks unwell and has started undergoing funny turns. Despite insistent questioning from Bashir, Barak claims that there is nothing wrong but he is noted furtively talking to Quark later that day. Barak's condition continues to deteriorate forcing Dr Bashir to visit Cardassia and seek help from the mysterious Enabran Tan, former head of the clandestine Cardassian Obsidian Order. A good episode which throws light on much of Barak's past and why he remains on DS9.

    Episode 43 - Crossover - Screenplay: Robert Hewitt Wolfe - Director: Kim Friedman - Screened: 15-May-94

        During a routine crossing through the wormhole, Dr Bashir and Major Kira suffer a plasma injector leak - the consequent disruption to the runabout nearly costs them their lives and they are glad to emerge from the wormhole with DS9 in sight. What is not so welcome is a Klingon Bird-of-Prey facing off with them and its subsequent boarding party. All the familiar faces are there, including Kira's doppelganger, but they're not the crew and friends they remember and there are unsuspected and surprising alliances in this parallel universe. This refers back to the original Star Trek episode Mirror, Mirror ... and the profound effect Kirk had on this parallel universe after a freak teleportation.

    Episode 44 - The Collaborator - Screenplay: Gary Holland, Ira Steven Behr, Robert Hewitt Wolfe - Director: Cliff Bole - Screened: 22-May-94

        It's time to elect a new Kai, spiritual head of the Vedek holy order, and Kira's lover Vedek Bareil is favourite to be elected. Trouble is, Bareil is having troubling visions from the Orbs and his rival in the race, Vedek Winn, has given sanctuary to an exiled collaborator with the Cardassians. Secretary Kubus claims Vedek Bareil gave away a secret Bajoran resistance base during the Cardassian occupation, leading to the deaths of 43 freedom fighters. Kira finds it hard to believe her love was responsible but Odo and herself enlist the help of Quark in cracking sealed Bajoran records, revealing damning evidence ...

Disk 7 - 87:13

    The final disc in the season containing the final two episodes, special features and  room for a few Easter Eggs too!

    Episode 45 - Tribunal - Screenplay: Bill Dial - Director: Avery Brooks - Screened: 5-Jun-94

        Chief O'Brien and wife, Keito, finally get away for their first break in 5 years. On the way to their vacation they are intercepted and boarded by a Cardassian patrol. Keito is sent home and O'Brien is transported to Cardassia Prime to face his trial on charges for which he has already been found guilty and sentenced to death. The crew on DS9 manage to establish his innocence but proving this in Cardassian Law will necessitate unconstitutional interference by Odo and exposure of Cardassian skullduggery. A good plot and story with some interesting views of Cardassian life and culture.

    Episode 46 - The Jem'Hadar - Screenplay: Steven Ira Behr - Director: Kim Friedman - Screened: 12-Jun-94

        Commander Sisko decides to take his son Jake on a field trip to the Gamma Quadrant to catch up on quality time together. Unfortunately, Jake invites Nog and, seeing an opportunity, Uncle Quark decides to come too. Whilst exploring a seemingly idyllic planet, Sisko and Quark are taken prisoner with an alien running from the Jem'Hadar - a race of ruthless soldiers working for The Dominion. Starfleet mounts a rescue mission and the first head-on encounter occurs with the unseen controllers of the Gamma Quadrant... The last episode of the season sets up DS9 as the frontier outpost to resist likely future incursions from the The Dominion Forces - can't wait for Season 3 !!

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

    The video quality is typical of 10 year old (pre-digital) broadcast video. Lack of edge enhancement, commonly seen on videos of this vintage, makes for a pleasant soft-focus, medium-detail look.

    The aspect ratio is in 1990's TV shape (1.33:1) and isn't 16x9 enhanced.

    There is an all-pervading softness to the video, which is not up to film or present day digital video resolution. This doesn't detract from the feature. Low level detail is adequate and there is no low level noise.

    In keeping with the soft focus, colours also are soft but rich enough and there was no chroma noise or bleed to speak of.

    One benefit of a lower resolution is the lack of aliasing and there's not much to see on these discs - just a smidgeon in the opening credits on the superstructure of the station. I couldn't see any other MPEG or video artefacts which is quite remarkable considering the compression needed to fit 174 minutes of video on each disc together with 5 soundtracks and 9 subtitle streams.

    The English subtitles were only a loose approximation of the spoken word and lost much of the richness and subtlety of the dialogue. With a little more care they could have been entirely accurate and quite honestly I think this would have been better. There were also 8 other language subtitles in Danish, German, Spanish, French, Italian, Dutch, Norwegian and Swedish.

    The DVD-9 discs are dual layer formatted, but as 2 episodes are recorded onto each layer we don't have an RSDL transition point on any of the 7 discs.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The sound is, as you'd expect, of broadcast quality for a TV series. We are, however, treated to a Dolby Digital 5.1 mix but quite honestly I found listening in downmixed 2 channel stereo to be preferable.

    There is no denying the European destination of this disc - we have two Dolby Digital 5.1 surround mixes, in English and German, encoded at 384 kbps and Dolby Digital 2.0 mixes in Spanish, French and Italian encoded at 192 kbps. Naturally I listened to the English track but found Odo and Quark barking at each other in German quite entertaining and strangely appropriate!

    In 5.1, the dialogue was ported mainly to the centre channel and I found this to be quite harsh with quite tiresome sibilance which got on my nerves after a while. Changing the processor to stereo mode gave a nicer balance to the sound stage. Unfortunately, some of the dialogue in 2 channel was a little muffled and so I found the subtitles quite helpful to catch some of the subtleties.

    I didn't pick any notable dialogue sync errors in the English soundtrack. The sync in the other languages wasn't too bad, either, apart from the odd extra word that wasn't seen to be spoken!

    The original theme is credited to Dennis McCarthy and most of the incidental music was variation on this theme and quite nicely done without being especially memorable.

    The surrounds were used for ambience rather than any razzle-dazzle surround effects. They created quite a pleasing immersive effect to being on the space station. It's a shame that some of the spaceship fight scenes couldn't have been more creatively mixed, but I guess we're stuck with a 2 channel original which was processed to give rise to the 5.1 mix and this could probably have been done just as effectively with onboard Prologic II or DTS:Neo processing.

    The subwoofer adequately supported the soundscape without drawing undue attention to itself

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

    For this review I only received the 7 sample discs so can't comment on the packaging or cover info or any contained booklet. Looks like a nice case judging from its appearance in the shops!

Menu

    Nice design emulating the Cardassian scanner readout on  the station, in 1.33:1 ratio as per main feature

New Frontiers: The Story of Deep Space Nine

    15:10 of interviews, recorded in 2002 with some flashbacks to 1996, with Executive Producers Michael Piller and Ira Steven Behr together with principal scriptwriter Robert Hewitt Wolfe about the philosophy of the series and how it matured. Michael Piller expresses the opinion that DS9:Season 2 compares with any Star Trek season!

Michael Westmore's Aliens

    12:02 of interview with the Makeup Supervisor about some of the thoughts behind alien makeup - did you notice all Cardassian women have a blue forehead spoon?

Deep Space 9 Sketchbook

    10:52 of interview with the ideas guys who sketch out the equipment for the scenes before it's assembled into reality by the workshops.

Quark's Story

    11:28 of the history of Quark and the Ferengi including a snip from their first appearance in TNG.

Crew Dossier: Jadzia Dax

    17:33 interview with the exquisite Terry Farrell on the evolution of the Jadzia Dax character from the 1st to her final 6th season.

New Station, New Ships

    5:18 interviews with illustrators Rick Sternback and Jim Martin and Visual Effects Producer Dan Curry on the design and model making of the featured ships and DS9.

Easter Eggs

(SPOILER ALERT: highlight with mouse to read)     There are 5 of these on each Special Features page, making 10 in all. They are selected by highlighting portions of the Station's superstructure - hint: they are very easy to find on PC playback by  using a mouse to scan over the menu. All of them are 2-3 minute snippets.
 
01  Interview with Michael Oruda - art director
02  Interview with Robert Hewitt Wolfe - story editor about Shadowplay
03  Interview with Robert Hewitt Wolfe - story editor about Crossover
04  Interview with Robert Hewitt Wolfe - story editor about Invasive Procedure
05  Terry Farrell (filmed in 2002 - still gorgeous!) about the Jax / Kira characters in The Siege
06  Armin Shimmerman (without makeup) on working with Wallace Shawn who played Zek
07  More Terry Farrell on Blood Oath and working with elderly Klingons
08  Director David Livingston on the camerawork in Crossover
09  Andrew Robinson (Garak sans makeup) on the Bashir-Cardassian relationship
10  Michael Piller on exploring the spiritual and metaphysical as in The Circle

R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

    The content of the R1 version appears identical to the R4 but lacks the European language tracks and subtitle streams.

Summary

    Season 2 starts to come alive with character development after the bedding-in pilot season and prepares us for future conflict with The Dominion - it certainly has given me a taste for the next 5 seasons!

    The video is clean and comfortable without any  spectacular qualities or problems.

    The soundtrack is again workable but I feel that the 5.1 mix was a bit of a waste of time and that a good quality 2 channel LPCM mix would have been preferable

    The extras for the season were good quality and very interesting, filling in some of the background necessary information nicely.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© John Lancaster (read my bio)
Sunday, January 04, 2004
Review Equipment
DVDPanasonic DMR-E20, using RGB output
DisplayPioneer SD-T50W1 (127cm). Calibrated with Video Essentials. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderYamaha RX-V995. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationYamaha RX-V995
SpeakersB&W 602 front/rear. B&W LRC6 Centre / Solid (AKA B&W) 500 SW

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