Was Dukat really evil?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine' started by Inactive-Shapeshifter, Feb 26, 2015.

  1. USS Firefly

    USS Firefly Commodore Commodore

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    I am planning to read the Terok Nor trilogy this year. I hope that Dukat starts a good person, changing in the man we get to learn in DS9
     
  2. at Quark's

    at Quark's Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I doubt 'evil' can be measured along a one dimensional scale. It depends on what you define as evil.

    - Malevolence as part of his character? Armus probably wins, he seemed to have very few traits but malevolence (in fact I don't think he was supposed to be character at all, just an abstract culmination of malevolence).
    - Having no redeeming features as a character? Rivas Fajo probably wins (the guy who kidnapped data and who seemed to have no redeeming features at all. Unlike, say, Dukat who genuinely seemed to care about Ziyal, whatever else he may have been).
    - Amount of damage he could do and 'scope' of his evil plans? Probably possessed Dukat (wishes to see the entire AQ in flames for eternity) or if possessions don't count, the female Changeling.
     
  3. Vger23

    Vger23 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    That guy was just a dick.
     
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  4. Ragitsu

    Ragitsu Captain Captain

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    An interesting notion which I do not share.
     
  5. dupersuper

    dupersuper Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I thought "true evil was submitting to him".
     
  6. Lucky

    Lucky Commander Red Shirt

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    He was evil. He had moments where he could have tried to redeem himself, and he took a few of them, but not enough to prevent evil from taking over.
     
  7. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I'd say yes because of the irony that since he showed affection and empathy for Ziyal, he WASN"T mentally ill or pure evil.

    Dukat COULD be a better person.

    He just consistently chose to be an evil scumbag.
     
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  8. Richard S. Ta

    Richard S. Ta Commodore Commodore

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    Armus is just really pissed off and lonely. He's a space incel.
     
  9. at Quark's

    at Quark's Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    You could also argue that that made him more evil in a way. Armus was the ' extraction of evil' of an entire group of people, and therefore might have had no choice in who he was, perhaps no option to become 'better' than he was. Dukat did have that choice but chose the 'evil' side deliberately.

    TROI: <..> You sound so alone.
    ARMUS [OC]: I am alone.
    TROI: Abandoned. Who deserted you?
    ARMUS [OC]: Creatures whose beauty now dazzles all who see them. They would not exist without me.
    TROI: You were together?
    ARMUS [OC]: They perfected a means of bringing to the surface all that was evil and negative within. Erupting, spreading, connecting. In time it formed second skin, dank and vile.
    TROI: You.
    ARMUS [OC]: Yes.
    TROI: They discarded you and left.
    ARMUS [OC]: And here I am.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2022
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  10. Dee1891

    Dee1891 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Yes, Dukat was capable of evil. But in "Waltz", I thought he was simply insane, due to his daughter's death. I mean . . it was a Cardassian who had killed his daughter, yet by the end of the episode, he wants to destroy Bajor. I don't know what to make of his.
     
  11. USS Firefly

    USS Firefly Commodore Commodore

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    That "Waltz" is a terrible episode for Dukat's character
     
  12. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think it was a necessary character check because fans had been apparently trying to soften Dukat for so long. Dukat is a man who was involved in countless horrific atrocities and the fandom kept letting him off the hook even though the guy is a rapist (Kira seems to be missing her mother wouldn't have been "willing" if her family starving to death wasn't an issue), fascist, and mass murderer.

    I totally bought that Dukat more than anything wanted to be Bajor's "White Savior" and when he realized he'd always be considered a monster there, he admitted he hated them.
     
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  13. Ragitsu

    Ragitsu Captain Captain

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    Charm goes a lonnnnnnnnnnnnng way. That, and an overdose of moral relativism.
     
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  14. Captain Jerk

    Captain Jerk Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    The showrunners clearly didn't want Dukat to be hated in black-and-white good guy/bad guy terms. Before the final season or two, he never really did anything overly bad or monstrous on-screen (correct me if I'm wrong), and made claims like it was the government that was responsible for the Occupation and he was just following orders, and that if it weren't for his actions way more Bajorans would have died, and so forth. And no character really completely disputed these claims, so for all we knew as viewers perhaps there was at least some truth to his personal slant on things. In fact Damar did the worst thing between the 2 characters on screen when he murdered his daughter (up to that point in the series anyway). Even when he impregnated that Pah-Wraith cult member it was shown at the end he seemed to truly believe he was following the will of the Pah-Wraiths. And after the demon that possessed him left him after killing Jadzia he didn't laugh or say things like "That's what you get!" and kick her body out of the way, he expressed a measure of remorse and made it clear it was only Sisko he meant harm. And he clearly loved his daughter and chose to spare her life even if it meant it would cost him in Cardassian society (although he clearly was also motivated by impressing Kira and gaining her favour as well, he wanted her in bed just like he got her mother in bed no doubt). lol Dukat was an a-hole but a likeable one thanks to his own impression and view of himself, even if it was self-deluded or not entirely honest. And he threw Sisko and Jake a surprise fireworks display instead of simply making fireworks out of them and their ship.:lol: Because once again he didn't see himself as some petty criminal or murderer or someone of low stature, but rather a great man who was above others, sort of like how if you kill enough people history sees you as a "conqueror" kind of thing I suppose. In summary, All Hail King Dukat.:ack:


    Kira was a hypocrite, she killed a boatload of what she considered "collaborators" in her day and spared her own mother, because it was her mother. And yes Kira was overly harsh on her judgments of people who collaborated in order to survive or to make sure others survived. And she ditched her father and left him to die alone. Daughter of the Year? Check. lol And she forgave Odo for his own collaborator-esque crimes when he was working for the Cardassians, and seemed to quickly get past the fact that an older version of Odo was fine with letting thousands of people cease to exist just so his younger self could get a chance with her romantically. Kira is apparently the moral arbiter of who deserves to die and who doesn't and who deserves second chances (or a hundred second chances).
     
  15. Ragitsu

    Ragitsu Captain Captain

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    Personally, I think the descriptor of "a-hole" should be reserved for people who cut you off in traffic and the like; an individual who was the commander of a space concentration camp deserves an appellation at least somewhat more severe.
     
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  16. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    It's pretty clear what to make of this: Dukat was evil.

    They literally wrote him as a space Nazi.

    Amongst other things, he abducted Rugal Pa'Dar from his father and placed him in a Bajoran orphanage, and tracked down and tried to kill his daughter Ziyal twice. In season five, he tries to genocide the entire Bajoran star system right after selling Cardassia to the Dominion. In "Things Past," we see him order the execution of innocent Bajorans. In season two, he collaborates with the Circle to try to take over Bajor again. We constantly hear about the slave labor camps he ran as prefect, and we see him operate mass rape programs "Wrongs Darker Than Dead or Night." He launches a war of aggression against the Federation and Klingon Empire at the start of the Dominion War and plots the conquest and brutal oppression of Earth and the Federation worlds. How much more evil can a man possibly do?

    You really gonna just take the classic Nazi defense at face value?

    A bullshit rationalization.

    Yes, they do.

    Once again, Dukat literally tried to exterminate all life in the Bajoran star system in "By Inferno's Light," up to and including that same daughter.

    So what?

    So the fuck what? He was trying to aid and abet a brutal war of aggression and conquest and trying to genocide the Prophets.

    He tried to kill her multiple times.

    After trying to kill her. And then he tried to kill her again!

    That is a really sickening thing to write.

    Kira was a hero who fought for the freedom of her people, and that outweighs everything else.
     
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  17. Dee1891

    Dee1891 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    And yet, he ignored that a Cardassian had murdered his daughter? this is why I had such a problem with Dukat during the show's last two seasons (along with the series' writing). It's not that I wanted him to be redeemed. But it made no sense to me that he had practically ignored the person who was responsible for his daughter's death. I thought this may have been a sign of his growing insanity. But we're supposed to believe Sisko that he was simply evil and nothing else.
     
  18. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I mean Sisko's view of Dukat is that he's a man who constantly attempts to frame himself as a good person but that never actually stops him from doing horrific evil deeds. We could argue that Ziyal was someone deeply important to him and that he should have gotten revenge but I'd argue it actually worked better that once she was gone that he basically put her out of his mind and focused instead on his grand desire to be a god.

    We can say, "Simply evil and nothing else." But the lesson Sisko has is that Dukat never learns and never will. It's not SHALLOW but it's also straight forward. Dukat thinks of himself as a grand and complicated man but he's just always going to do what's best for himself with one or two exceptions in his entire life.
     
  19. Dee1891

    Dee1891 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Sisko still dismissed Dukat's erratic behavior in this episode. And it's one of the reasons why I dislike it so much.
     
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  20. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Perhaps but that actually does fit with one of the themes I do like: Sisko isn't Dukat's archenemy.

    Dukat wants to be the Joker to his Batman or Lex Luthor or a grand theatrical nemesis.

    But Sisko doesn't remotely think of him like this.

    To quote Robert Meyers, "Khan has been thinking about Kirk for decades, Kirk has not been thinking about Khan."

    Dukat is not Sisko's equal or some grand rival, he's just some random Space Nazi (forgive the terminology) who keeps getting in his way.

    So of course Sisko dismisses his behavior because he doesn't care about Dukat. Ironically, Kira DOES consider Dukat that sort of rival but Dukat never thinks of her in those terms because she's Bajoran and a woman that he's attracted to.
     
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