I started DS9 on January 1st this year and just finished WYLB two months (and a day, grrr) later. Overall, it was quite good, but I do have some issues.
I know that some men just wanting to watch the world burn is a common trope in genre storytelling, but did the resolution to the Pah-wraith arc really have to be so cheesy? The Pah-wraiths don't seem to have a purpose other than to be evil and want to kill everyone, and their conflict with the Prophets has no depth to it. It's a black and white tale of a race of evil supernatural beings that hate everything, and a race of friendly supernatural beings that want to stop them. When the Prophets were introduced, they were presented as a truly alien race that allowed Star Trek to explore some harder sci-fi material than normal, as well as the human ability to dwell on past suffering. It wasn't high art, but it was trying to do something more than your standard space opera. It's a pity it all descended into this madness.
Adding insult to injury, the final confrontation between Sisko and Dukat is just lame. Firstly, Sisko's reason for going to the Fire Caves is because his spidey-sense tingled. When he gets there, Dukat magics him up a little while gloating, then they both fall into a fiery cavern. So Sisko's great trial was to lunge at a guy? Couldn't the Prophets have just sent Sisko the message to burn that book 4 years ago? This is an anticlimactic, nonsensical end to a story that had a lot of potential, but which didn't develop properly.
Completely agree. Felt like a total joke to me, especially compared to the Vorlon/Shadow conflict on B5.
I don't like the way it actually happened, but I do like the idea of Sisko joining the Prophets, it just feels right somehow. His faith in the Prophets has been slowly growing throughout the series to the point where he is willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for them. Personally, I prefer to think that Sisko is trapped in the Celestial Temple for eternity and that is the penance and great sorrow he was warned about, but the ending is open enough for fans to also imagine that he will return one day should they wish to do so.
Yeah, I agree that I like the general idea of Sisko-joining-the-Prophets, but I have a few big problems with the execution of this.
One, the whole pregnancy storyline should've been left out for the same reason the Defiant 2.0 should've been; it comes too close to the end to actually mean anything. The only things it affects are one's ep cliffhanger and then Kassidy being sick at the beginning of the next one. All it does is muddle and confuse the "Sisko decides to stay with the Prophets" issue, especially since I think...
Two, Sisko should've explicitly been said to remain there permanently, as you believe. The idea that he can return (presumably put in because of the baby storyline, maybe because they didn't think audiences would accept a captain dying in the finale, I don't know) just cheapens the impact. Like Sheridian jumping into Z'ha'dum, there must be a sacrifice and it must be permanent. "Sisko remains with the Prophets forever" has soooooo much more impact than "Sisko goes on holiday with the Prophets."
And the big one...
Three, it should've been Jake, damnit. Kassidy's an okay love interest, but she's not REALLY that interesting of a character. I don't hate her or anything... but for Sisko's last scene? For his goodbye to the mortal world and everything he loves? No. Should've been Jake, and more than that, it shouldn't have been in a cliche white void; it should've been on the pier, the same pier they shared their first scene together on. If THAT scene had happened, Sisko appearing to Jake on in the wormhole-version of the pier and telling him he won't be coming back... I would've cried, no doubt. As it was, the scene didn't have anywhere near that impact.