Most fans of the character seem to concentrate on his personal transformation from adjutant to liberator, which was a stroke of genius by the writers, convincingly acted, and I don't need to add any more praise than that.
Usually his role before
said personal transformation by contrast gets swept under the carpet as being rather insignificant and dull, with the character being no more than a simple bully. I don't get this - I found the way he was presented during the Occupation arc one of the best-acted and subtle portrayals of the indoctrination commonplace in totalitarian regimes
that I've ever seen!
Damar is your classic loyal-to-the-death adjutant who won't have a word said against his commander. I have no doubt members of the Cardassian military are not only conditioned to absolute obedience, but equally to view their military leaders as some kind of walking embodiment of "the national virtue".
Examples of such unthinking hero-worship are all too common in real history; Casey Biggs does an outstanding job, with very few words, in portraying this. My favourite example would be the scene where Dukat has a little run-in with Weyoun. Damar is in the background, but his face eloquently registers volumes of approval, annoyance, disdain, triumph with every turn of the tussle for authority being played out in front of him.
I'm certain Dukat approves of Damar so much not simply because of the unquestioning efficiency with which he carries out his duties, but because his loyalty is personal.
He's a mirror for his superior officer's self-conceit (parallels to Ziyal, there).
Damar looks at Dukat and sees the man Dukat sees when he looks at himself.
In essence they both idolize the same image.
So does anybody else think the character worked at least as well before becoming the hero of his people than he did after? or simply has some comments/opinions about the character and his development...