Season 7 Review
After a slip in quality in season 6, season 7 of DS9 rebounds fairly impressively. The average score for the season is 6.64, making this the second highest rated season in my DS9 rewatch. It's not up to the same level of quality as season 5 (6.808), but after a slow start season 7 finishes relatively strongly.
Like the last two seasons, I rated 6 episodes this season to be absolute classics, with four 9s and two 10s becoming a recurring feature of these graphs. Three episodes were rated below average, which is only half of the number of below average episodes in season 6. Six episodes were rated average, while sixteen were rated above average.
Best episode: Tacking into the Wind
Worst episode: The Emperor's New Cloak
There's no changes to the writing staff this season, although Robert Hewitt Wolfe returns as a freelancer to write a single episode.
Ron Moore gets a staggering average score of 7.857, which leads me to worry that my fanboyism may have biased the results of my scoring mechanism. Everyone else actually fell below the average score of the season, something we haven't seen since Peter Allan Fields dragged up the season 1 average. Behr and Beimler have a combined score of 6.571, which is the best performance by Behr so far. Echevarria falls back to an average of 6.429, while Thompson and Weddle have an average of 5.5. Wolfe's single episode earned a score of 5.
The final results for the writers will be in the overall series review.
Runabouts Lost: 9 (+1)
Form of... : 38 (+5)
Wormhole in Peril: 10 (+1)
Sykonee's Counter: 36 (+1)
Stupid French Things: 7 (+2)
Season 1 Average: 5.211
Season 2 Average: 6.231
Season 3 Average: 6.192
Season 4 Average: 6.4
Season 5 Average: 6.808
Season 6 Average: 6.423077
Season 7 Average: 6.64
Season 7 is a divisive season of DS9 for many reasons. If you hate Ezri Dax then you're probably not going to like this season, she is featured a lot this season. Personally, I like her well enough, although I find it completely understandable why some fans don't. If you don't like the Prophets/Pah-wraith conflict then you might not like this season. I don't particularly like the way it developed myself, but it's a small enough element of the season that I'm able to focus on the good stuff. If you don't like Vic Fontaine then you'll be annoyed by his inclusion into the recurring cast this season. Personally, I think that he's a silly addition to the show, but he has some good moments so I'm willing to give him a pass.
The big problem with this season is the same one as the previous season; there's too much fluff and too much stalling. Little happens to move along the Dominion War arc in the first half of the season, and we get treated to holodeck adventures instead of the "real" adventures we came to see. Some of those fluff episodes are good, but there's quite a lot of them for a series that's taking place during war time. Thankfully, the second half of the season is almost absent of fluff as the show went into arc-mode, but it does create an odd imbalance of tone between the two halves of the season.
Out of the main cast, Ezri is clearly the character with the most development this season. While this is understandable considering she was a new character and the writers only had one season to tell stories about her, she does take away screentime from other main characters such as O'Brien, Quark and Jake. We don't get treated to a Torture O'Brien™ episode this season, Quark's role is largely reduced to lusting after Ezri, and Jake barely even appears on the show any more. But while Ezri dominates the first half of the season, the character that dominates the second half of the season is Damar, and I consider that to be very welcome indeed. The entire Cardassian arc worked really well, and it's a testament to the writers and Casey Biggs that a character who started out as a named extra became a highlight of the series.
DS9 is a flawed show, and season 7 is a flawed season. But it's also a recovery from the weaknesses of the second half of season 6, and it's a strong effort to send the show out on a high note. I have my problems with it, as do most fans, but on the whole I find it to be a satisfying conclusion to the series.
If I may be so bold, I would suggest reviewing Farscape next. I would be quite interested in seeing how TheGodBen reacts to a such over the top, quirky, controversial and polarizing show.
Quirky and OTT in what way? I'm not necessarily opposed to those qualities, but I fear that it would be similar to Doctor Who, which is also quite quirky and OTT. That's kinda why I never got into DW, and I fear that Farscape may be the same way from what little I've seen of it.
I actually thought you might wait until all of TNG was out on Blu-ray, but while I'd love to hear your thoughts on Farscape, I'd be happy to see your take on TNG.
But they wouldn't work in my trusty old DVD player.
I don't have a blu-ray player, nor any interest in getting one. It's nothing against HD, I love HD games, I just don't feel like paying money to purchase an experience that's already functionally available on my shelf.