Did anyone else feel the same way?
I agree with a lot of your points.
Jadzia was definitely my least favorite character on the show but really only to a point of indifference. There's just so much going on and so many other great characters that it's not worth getting worked-up over.
1.) This I totally agree with it. Farrell was the weakest link in the cast by a considerable margin. A good comparison is her speech in "Behind the Lines." Brooks gives the exact same speech at the beginning of the episode, and the contrast of the two is night and day.
For me though, it wasn't her body language so much as that low, breathy voice she used whenever she was trying to be serious. Drove me bonkers.
Her acting did have an impact of scenes/episodes. I think the most substantial was "Rejoined," which is too bad because Thompson was so amazing in that episode. (Well, she always is.)
I think Farrell's performance was the difference between it being a good DS9 episode and a true Trek classic--admittedly having an inexperienced actor direct what should have been a monumental episode was a mistake.
2.) I think part of the problem is the writers just didn't know what to do with her. The character was essentially rebooted twice during the early years.
They started her off as sort of a wise-old-sage. They were trying for the ironic twist of Obi-wan in a young woman's body. That didn't work.
Next they put her in the strait-up science geek role, the go-to exposition person. Essentially, she was Spock lite. That didn't work either.
Finally they settled on the "free-spirit" thing. But they never felt comfortable with it and retreated back to a previous persona whenever they could.
You can see that they changed the way she was filmed in order to make this work. She was shot at different angles, positioned differently in frames, they even changed the lighting from time to time--in what was sometimes a huge departure from how the other actors were filmed.
I think the whole Worf thing was just their way of "ridding it out" because they'd completely given up on what to do.
This becomes even more obvious the second Ezri came on screen. The writers loved her. (Well, so did I. Nikki...
People often complain that too much of season seven was devoted to Ezri. I think the main reason for this was she was such an interesting character, from conception on up, that they wanted to explore her as much as they could with the limited time they had left. Plus, they instantly went from one of the weaker actors on the show to one of the strongest.
But this all continued beyond the show. It's obvious the lit writers had so much fun writing her. Heck, one could almost sum up the whole of the relaunch as "Ezri's saga."
I've often thought the reason for all this was because there was early consensus amongst the staff that Farrell would be the first to leave--or they wanted her to go the most.
In any case, I think hers was the first trap door they wrote and they then spent a lot of time tweaking it over the years.