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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > Deep Space Nine

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

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Old February 21 2013, 05:58 AM   #1
Lance
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So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

I'm just curious, really. They made a big deal about her in the original story treatment for the pilot episode and also in the series bible, as if she was going to be a recurring presence in the series. But then they went and killed her off in her very next appearance ('Battle Lines'), and used her death as the basis for the Winn vs Bariel election subplot that rounded off season one.

So what was it? Was the actress just unwilling (or unable) to commit to further episodes? Or was Opaka's death always planned from the beginning? Did they intend to bring in Winn as an antagonist from the very start, but felt that it would have more impact on the audience if we got some feel for who the previous Kai actually was?

Do we know the story behind this?
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Old February 21 2013, 06:15 AM   #2
dub
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

I think I read somewhere that the writers considered creating a new character to kill and bring back to life trapped forever on that planet, but they decided to use an existing character instead and Opaka was considered the most expendable (I'm sure someone can find the exact story about this...)

I'm glad they did it though, because Winn came along and made the show more interesting. I did like Opaka though and wish they brought her back more often in visions and orb experiences, etc. She fit the role very nicely.
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Old February 21 2013, 06:28 AM   #3
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

Here it is. Scroll down to Background Information: Story and Script. It's the second bullet point.
http://en.memory-alpha.org/wiki/Battle_Lines_(episode)
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Old February 21 2013, 09:51 AM   #4
Seven of Five
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

Yeah that's it.

It bugged me that she said she'd be back, but it wasn't followed up on. I would have loved to have seen her back, as I enjoyed her few appearances.
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Old February 21 2013, 12:36 PM   #5
DalekJim
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

The weird thing isn't that she was written out. But that she was kept alive and everybody acted like she was dead for the rest of the show.
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Old February 21 2013, 12:50 PM   #6
Sigokat
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

I liked Opaka much better than Winn as Kai, but I see now (after finishing the series) that Winn was needed as Kai for the overall story.

Like others, I wish there was more of Opaka in orb visions and such
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Old February 21 2013, 01:40 PM   #7
heavy lids
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

Because she was fucking boring.
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Old February 21 2013, 03:05 PM   #8
Bry_Sinclair
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

I loved Opaka. She had a warm motherly quality but also a strength of her convictions and a serenity that seemed to fly in the face of the Occupation. It is a shame they never revisited the moon she was on or had more of her in visions and orb experiences, but what little we did get from her was a treat.

With Sisko as Emissary and Opaka being the one who discovered him, you kinda know she would have accepted sharing her role as spiritual leader with him, becoming a mentor and guide to him over time. Which I would have loved to see happen, but in order to make his journey a more difficult one and have another adversary closer to home, they needed another Kai, one who wasn't quite so accepting and was looking out for themselves more than the good of Bajor.

For story fodder and conflict, Winn was a great addition to the recurring characters, well written and acted over the years. Its just a shame she came at the expense of Opaka.
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Old February 21 2013, 04:38 PM   #9
dub
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
The weird thing isn't that she was written out. But that she was kept alive and everybody acted like she was dead for the rest of the show.
Very true. Kira could have visited her to share news and her frustrations about Kai Winn and the dominion. Then, Kira could have been killed and brought back to life while down there. Now she's trapped, too. When Kira doesn't return to the station, the crew fears the worst. Garak, who happens to be around when they are discussing this suggests a gas called trilerium that the Cardassians have been experimenting with which blocks outside sensors when released in large quantities in the upper atmosphere of M Class planets. They could use this gas to temporarily block the orbiting satellites (he is "unable" to share why he knows this information or why the Cardassians need such a gas, but Garak does think he can get his hands on some of it). Bashir jumps in and says they can simultaneously flood the lower atmosphere with antibions. The combination of these two in the atmosphere would theoretically neutralize the biomechanical devices. The theory is the people on the planet surface will survive, but it's just a theory so there's no way of knowing for sure without trying it. So they take a runabout to the planet and try it while in orbit, everything appears to work as planned, but then unfortunately everybody dies...except for Kira. After several tests back at DS9, we learn that Kira has a small trace of toxins in her system which helped her survive. According to Bashir and Garak, Cardassians are the only known species with this specific toxin naturally in their systems. Bashir never detected it before because it's not something that comes up with standard tests. Kira has an orb experience featuring Opaka. Opaka says "Kira is not of Bajor." Kira is left with more questions than answers. The episode ends.

LOL...but seriously, I would have loved to see Kira visit Opaka once or twice at the very least. I liked Opaka.
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Old February 21 2013, 07:22 PM   #10
Lance
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
The weird thing isn't that she was written out. But that she was kept alive and everybody acted like she was dead for the rest of the show.
Lol... I've gotta admit, I'd forgotten myself that she hadn't actually been killed off until you mentioned it.
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Old February 21 2013, 09:17 PM   #11
DalekJim
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

All she did was move and suddenly she's considered to be dead to everybody. She had the shittiest friends ever.
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Old February 21 2013, 09:26 PM   #12
Sindatur
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

DalekJim wrote: View Post
All she did was move and suddenly she's considered to be dead to everybody. She had the shittiest friends ever.
Well, to be fair, if she left her new yard, she would be dead. but, yea, you'd think someone would've stopped by her new place on occasion to visit with her.
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Old February 22 2013, 06:30 AM   #13
Sigokat
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

Lance wrote: View Post
DalekJim wrote: View Post
The weird thing isn't that she was written out. But that she was kept alive and everybody acted like she was dead for the rest of the show.
Lol... I've gotta admit, I'd forgotten myself that she hadn't actually been killed off until you mentioned it.
Yeah same here. Up until this thread the way I was remembering it was that she was dead.
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Old February 22 2013, 07:08 AM   #14
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

So they could replace some unknown actress with Nurse Effing Ratched.

Saviola or Fletcher? Not a tough choice.
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Old February 22 2013, 12:06 PM   #15
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Re: So, why was Opaka written out of the show?

Yeah, it's so much more tragic that the characters representing all the humanistic values like Bareil and Opaka are pushed aside by a patronizing, manipulative, ultra-conservative leader. Waaaay better choice for the writers.
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