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Deep Space Nine What We Left Behind, we will always have here.

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Old January 16 2013, 04:52 AM   #1
Dankokoro
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Jadzia

Hi all,

I'm watching DS9 for the first time and on the whole enjoying it a lot.. but i have one serious problem with the show, and that is Jadzia Dax. I'm new so I apologise if this has already been discussed before on these boards, but I am finding this character so irritating and Terry Farrells acting so very poor that it is actually taking away from my enjoyment of the show. I'm almost at the end of season 6 and she's either getting way more screen time than she used to or the time she's on the screen is getting that much more annoying..

I got spoilers that she gets killed off eventually, and so for the past few seasons i've been waiting for that very special episode to arrive.. during the episode 'Change of Heart', I thought it was finally about to happen, but alas, she survived (which was made even more heartbreaking by the fact that she was at her most annoying in that episode).. Recently every time she delivers a line i make my hand in to a gun and pretend to shoot her on the screen..

Why i can't stand her:

1) The main reason: Terry Farrells acting in this show is very, VERY poor. Her delivery is ALWAYS off in one way or another and she brings down the standard of every single scene she is in. Don't get me started on her facials and that cheeky little smile she does.. Truly awful.

2) She's terribly written. her dialogue reminds me of Jack O'neil in the later seasons of Stargate Sg-1, totally sarcastic and unhelpful 100% of the time. There's a dangerous situation and she's making jokes.. and for who's benefit?

3) She has the role of Spock/Data as the 'Captain's closest friend' (obviously a pretty important part) but her chemistry with sisko is awful and no matter how much he calls her 'Old man', i just can't buy that friendship..

4) She occupies 90% of Worf's screen time in which they seem to exclusively talk about their relationship.. There would be nothing wrong with that ordinarily except that Jadzia makes up one half of the relationship so i automatically want it to fail.

I've never disliked a character of an ensemble cast so much that it's actually detracted from my enjoyment of the show, but then i've never disliked a character of any show as much as i dislike Jadzia.

Did anyone else feel the same way?
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Old January 16 2013, 05:14 AM   #2
DonIago
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Re: Jadzia

No. And if one character of a tv show was annoying me enough that I was inclined to make a post such as the above, I'd probably stop watching the show.

Every tv series I've ever seen has at least one character who annoys me. If the show's good enough, I let it slide and move on. If the show's not good enough, I don't watch it.
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Old January 16 2013, 05:14 AM   #3
Dale Sams
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Re: Jadzia

I'm sorry. I must disagree.

1) I just don't see it. Her character os pretty consistent throughout the show.

2) She actually gets called on that in one ep.

3) Sisko and Curzon were very close. Jadzia and Sisko...not as much. But i enjoy how comfortable they are around each other without devoting any time explaining it for us.

If I had a problem with her, it would be that she has no real arc in the show. I'm actually pretty neutral about her.

Hopefully after she's gone you enjoy the show more...and hopefully after she's gone, there's not a...certain... moment where you go, "What the???"
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Old January 16 2013, 05:45 AM   #4
Dankokoro
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Re: Jadzia

DonIago wrote: View Post
No. And if one character of a tv show was annoying me enough that I was inclined to make a post such as the above, I'd probably stop watching the show.

Every tv series I've ever seen has at least one character who annoys me. If the show's good enough, I let it slide and move on. If the show's not good enough, I don't watch it.
Well fortunately, she's just one character in a large cast.. Like i said i'm still enjoying the show, but i'd be enjoying it more if she was simply not on the show, and i can't (or wouldn't) say that about many, if any, other characters on TV shows i watch/enjoy.
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Old January 16 2013, 06:09 AM   #5
Dankokoro
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Re: Jadzia

Dale Sams wrote: View Post
I'm sorry. I must disagree.

1) I just don't see it. Her character os pretty consistent throughout the show.

2) She actually gets called on that in one ep.

3) Sisko and Curzon were very close. Jadzia and Sisko...not as much. But i enjoy how comfortable they are around each other without devoting any time explaining it for us.

If I had a problem with her, it would be that she has no real arc in the show. I'm actually pretty neutral about her.

Hopefully after she's gone you enjoy the show more...and hopefully after she's gone, there's not a...certain... moment where you go, "What the???"
1) She's consistent alright..

2) Yes she actually gets called on it a few times by Sisko and each time i went "THANKYOU SISKO!" and gave it a fist pump.

3) Perhaps at the start of the show they're not supposed to be that close (cause they just met), but they were destined to be close and by season 6 they should be, just like other characters have grown closer. I think they just don't seem to be due to their awful chemistry (I blame Farrell).

In one episode in season 6 (can't remember which), benjiman says something like "I couldn't talk to anyone about it, not even Dax". So that's evidence they're supposed to be really tight.

Also, if Sisko isn't meant to be close to Dax, that mean's he's not meant to close to any other characters except his son. Don't you think there's something wrong with that?
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Old January 16 2013, 05:54 PM   #6
Use of Time
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Re: Jadzia

I see what you are saying. I don't think I feel quite as strong as you about her but I never really cared too much for her character. She was like the "hipster" of the show.
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Old January 16 2013, 07:22 PM   #7
CorporalClegg
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Re: Jadzia

Dankokoro wrote: View Post
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.

Nothing worked.

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.
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Old January 16 2013, 09:12 PM   #8
Dick_Valentine
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Re: Jadzia

I think in Emmisary some of her line readings were a bit off but aside from that she was a valued member of the cast, at least in my opinion.

I enjoyed her perspective on events as they happened, but then I've always gravitated towards the wise cracking characters, those who take every situation uber-seriously and never raise a smile are the ones I tend to dislike.

Jadzia had classic moments, mainly her joining in with Nog's dancing at her Hen night or teasing Worf about borrowing his Klingon operas etc.
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Old January 16 2013, 09:21 PM   #9
R. Star
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Re: Jadzia

I always thought Farrel did a good job with her performance. Sure there are individual episodes she's off, but that's just human characteristic.

What irked me about the character was how varied she was. One episode she's the quiet scientist type, the next she's getting drunk and gambling with Quark and the next she's off killing people with Worf and their Klingon buddies.
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Old January 16 2013, 09:29 PM   #10
Ryva Brall
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Re: Jadzia

I agree with most everyone's comments about Jadzia. To me, it seemed like the writers tried way too hard to make her interesting, and it just came off as forced. She was a genius with eight lifetimes' worth of knowledge, Sisko's oldest friend, a Klingon warrior, and nearly every male character was in love with her, but somehow she just didn't live up to all the hype. I never disliked her, but she was always my least favorite of the main cast. And I always gave an inward sigh whenever she was the main focus of an episode.

(SPOILER ALERT) Then, of course, she was replaced by Ezri, and I suddenly wished for Jadzia to come back. Sorry, Corporal Clegg, but I wasn't a big Ezri fan.
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Old January 16 2013, 10:23 PM   #11
milo bloom
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Re: Jadzia

First run-through the show I was a big fan, but after season 7 and every re-watch after, she's just taking up space until Ezri arrives.
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Old January 16 2013, 10:36 PM   #12
Melakon
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Re: Jadzia

CorporalClegg wrote: View Post
. . . 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. . . [emphasis added]
You mean Avery Brooks? You consider Avery Brooks, with an MFA in acting and directing, and a professor of theatre arts at Rutgers, an inexperienced actor and director? "Rejoined" was his fifth directing assignment for the series, which hardly makes him inexperienced.
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Old January 16 2013, 11:01 PM   #13
CorporalClegg
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Re: Jadzia

Compared to the other stand-in directors of the show, or even other actors, five episodes is still pretty green.

Frakes and Burton, for example, had to really pay their dues before they were allowed to direct a show that was anywhere near as heavy.
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Old January 16 2013, 11:02 PM   #14
Dankokoro
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Re: Jadzia

CorporalClegg wrote: View Post
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.
Ahh thank you.. i was going to use that episode and the "take a good look at this people.." speeches as an example but it obviously slipped my mind. I actually started cringing before she started talking when i realised she was about to address a room full of starfleet personnel.. and her delivery was even worse than i was expecting..

I definitely noticed that her character fluctuated quite a bit over the course of the 6 seasons (not quite as accurately as you did), and i was quite tolerant of her for the first few seasons, but it was her 'final form' that i really couldn't stand. I swear there were entire episodes where she did not say one serious thing.. I mean i'm all for a character that lightens the mood, but with her it just seemed relentless. This was also hard to reconcile with the fact that she's supposed to be the product of 7 lifetimes worth of wisdom and experience etc.. she's basically just a smartass?

CorporalClegg wrote: View Post
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.
I had very similar thoughts, but i was more focused on what the rest of the cast felt about acting along side her. I saw such a gulf in the performances of say, Farrell and Brooks (as they had many scenes together), that i often wondered if it was difficult for him to maintain his own high standards in those scenes when you have someone that's not pulling their weight. I also had the same feeling in scenes with Farrell and Visitor (who is fantastic imo).. One episode in particular when they go on a mission to find a derelict shuttle or fighter that's been hidden in a cave since the occupation (you know the one). The cockpit banter was just painful.

I kind of assumed or hoped that it would've created problems behind the scenes, or fans in general would've rejected her and that she would've done a Tasha Yarr on us. But i guess she wasn't as unpopular an actress or character as i thought she would've been..
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Old January 16 2013, 11:11 PM   #15
Melakon
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Re: Jadzia

I do agree that Farrell was a lightweight. Watch her try to carry Hellraiser III as the lead. And especially laughable delivery of the line "Then what the fuck is that?"
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