DS9's cast fragmented a lot in the later seasons and it was rare for them to do a big ensemble episode, so I think it was good for them to have an episode like this in the final season.
It's from this point of view that I've come to appreciate both Take Me Out to the Holosuite
. Basically they're a way of taking a step back from the ongoing storylines and letting the characters spend a little quality time with each other and with the fans before the final chapter. It's on the list of creative decisions on the part of Ira Behr and co. that I've come to appreciate more over time (Vic Fontaine is also on the list.) Others are still incomprehensible to me, but perhaps there will come a day when all shall be revealed
I don't have a single favorite, but I think A Time to Stand/Rocks and Shoals
deserves a mention as a two-parter. Favor the Bold/Sacrifice of Angels
is the section of the Occupation Arc that immediately comes to mind I think for any fan, but rewatching the opening two episodes of season 6 a few times has allowed me to appreciate just how good they are. So tightly written and beautifully directed (especially R&S), with so many underlying themes and questions being addressed in a subtle manner.
The Visitor - it may be the best episode of Trek
I'll get flamed for this, but to me it's too sappy. it's very well acted though (by Cirroc Lofton and Tony Todd).
has never had the impact on me that it has on many fans. Well-written and performed certainly, but I can't say it has ever really stood out to me as the masterpiece episode that it is to some. I never have any desir to rewatch it, for example, whereas there many episodes of DS9 I enjoy rewatching on a fairly regular basis.
Too Much Fun wrote:
A lot of my favourites are more comedic episodes. I think DS9 does a lighter tone type of episode really well.
I agree that it does, at least when mass Ferengi aren't involved (though even occasionally when they are). In the Cards
is another great example of a lighter episode, though I admit I find it somewhat mystifying that a fan of the show would perceive this as DS9's absolute best
material. However, to each his own!