The Way of the Warrior – Essay

The Heroes of Deep Space Nine

An Analysis of The Way of the Warrior using The Writer’s Journey, Inside Story the Power of the Transformation Arc and The Art of Dramatic Writing.

 The Way of the Warrior1 is a feature length episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine2. It was the opening story of the show’s fourth season. It changed the status quo of the series with the introduction of a new main character, Lieutenant Commander Worf3, and the beginnings of war with the Klingon Empire4. The Klingons are the warriors referred to in the title and their displeasure with the peace treaty with the Federation5 is what drives the action. This essay will explore the development of the story by the use of three analytical works: The Writer’s Journey by Christopher Vogler6, Inside Story the Power of the Transformation Arc by Dara Marks7 and The Art of Dramatic Writing by Lajos Egri.8

Deep Space Nine has an ensemble cast of nine main characters. This episode, and therefore this essay, focuses primarily on Captain Sisko and Lieutenant Commander Worf.

Sisko’s story is the threat posed by the Klingon task force. This plot intersects with a sub-plot of his relationship with Kasidy Yates. That relationship is important in establishing the ordinary world9 that must be abandoned for the call to adventure10 as discussed by Vogler.

Worf’s story is about his position in society. He is summoned to the station by Sisko and is an ally to him. For Worf the story is personal. He is the only Klingon serving in Starfleet and this is the story of how the alliance between those two powers breaks down.

Both of these protagonists are Starfleet officers and as officers do not have the same choices of whether or not to embark on adventure as might be expected. Worf faces conflicting calls to adventure and has to ‘…choose between the Federation and the Klingon Empire.’11

This essay will discuss the complexities of multiple protagonists. While Sisko is ostensibly the hero, with Worf as an ally, Worf is also a hero with Sisko as his mentor.

A specific focus of importance is that of the Dominion12 threat. Though the Dominion do not appear in this episode the threat they pose is what drives the action. The Klingons are using this threat ‘as an excuse to do what they were born to do, to fight and to conquer.’13

Finally this essay will show how complex the formation of a story is. The works of Vogler, Marks, and Egri are excellent resources for analysing a story. However divergence from those principles is also important so that the audience can still be surprised and intrigued.

Vogler, Marks and Egri all talk of the importance of establishing the background of a story. Egri speaks of this in terms of premise.14 He gives many examples of premise from various works of fiction. For example Macbeth has the premise of “Ruthless ambition leads to its own destruction.’15 He goes on to state that ‘Every good play must have a well-formulated premise.’16

A premise, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, is ‘a previous statement or proposition from which another is inferred or follows as a conclusion:’17 The examples Egri gives lend themselves more towards morals or lessons. However as life does not break down into morals or lessons it means that not all fiction has to either. In the examples that Egri gives the premise is important and may have been the intention of Shakespeare in penning Macbeth but the premise is not always so evident or so important.

The Way of the Warrior, being part of a series, cannot be discussed completely in a vacuum. A possible premise to this episode might be ‘Fear leads to rash action and the risk of one’s own safety.’ Michael Dorn, who plays Worf, summed the episode up by saying ‘…the Klingons [have] finally gone nuts, basically.’18 This sums up the episode well. It is not a premise as discussed by Egri but it functions to describe this story. Egri’s book discusses drama in terms of theatre. A play and a television episode are very different things. The most important differences are that television episodes tend to involve a team of writers, to varying degrees of involvement, and they have to produce a certain number of episodes for each season. Therefore stories are sometimes formed from this necessity and from what will look good on the screen rather than out of a clear idea of story. Television does not fit so neatly into Egri’s analogy that ‘Every sensible invention must have a purpose, every planned sprint a destination.’19 While The Way of the Warrior is an important episode, its premise can be left open to interpretation. It is the fall out from these events that are most important. The events of this episode spark a war between the Klingons and the Federation. This weakens both forces and so when the greater threat of the Dominion arrives they are not as well prepared.

However a more clear premise can he found if we look at Worf. Worf has a complete character arc within this episode and it could be suggested that the premise of the episode is ‘A man of two worlds must eventually choose one.’

Worf’s role as a protagonist of this story is directly linked to the Klingons’ arrival at the station. It is easy to see a self-contained hero’s journey for this character. For Sisko the events lack much gravitas on a personal level.

The Klingons came to Deep Space Nine because of its strategic position. Sisko is the commanding officer of the station and has to deal with the Klingons for that reason. Worf however would likely have been called in to assist whomever commanded the station. Worf’s story more closely fits the hero’s journey model because he started outside the special world,20 of Deep Space Nine, and ended up an insider.

The special world21 is a term used by Vogler as a contrast to the ordinary world.22 It is the place that a hero enters on his journey. The contrast between these two worlds is important in showing the effect on the character. Vogle speaks of this in terms of what happens ‘Before the beginning.’23

Marks speaks of the same principal in terms of back story. She states that ‘Creating a backstory is an excellent and productive activity that helps breathe life into characters by giving them a history before the story ever begins.24

The back story for both protagonists has already been established. In the opening we see ‘the baseline,’25 what is normal for the characters, so we can compare to the ‘special world.26

The ordinary world of this episode shows the crew searching the titular station for a changeling.27 It is soon revealed that this is in fact a drill and the changeling they are searching for is Odo.28

This scene serves to remind the audience of the threat of the Dominion but is contrasted by showing Sisko meeting Kasidy Yates – his girlfriend. They talk briefly of the Dominion. This brief conversation serves to show the looming threat that the Dominion poses. At this point in the series they are the threat on the horizon. The threat they pose is a call to adventure that will be answered in the form of total war by the end of the fifth season.29 The ordinary world, for the purposes of this episode, is established as being a time of tension and a cold war of sorts.

Sisko’s call to adventure30 comes when General Martok, a Klingon, arrives at the station. Martok is the herald31 of this story bringing ‘a challenge’32 to Sisko, telling him ‘we have been sent here to fight alongside our Federation allies against the Dominion.33‘ Sisko rejects this as being unnecessary but he becomes suspicions of Martok and intends to discover the Klingons’ true intentions.

Thus in this story the call to adventure, brought by the herald, is rejected and is never taken up. Instead the fact that this call exists leads the hero to start his own adventure. Vogler describes this as being ‘shanghaied’34 into the adventure but Sisko is not reluctant. To do other than investigate would be to go against his duty.

Duty is at the centre of Sisko’s character. As a Starfleet officer it is his job to deal with all the problems that present themselves. The arrival of the Klingon ships is the ending of the teaser and serves to set up the conflict of this story.

Dara Marks states that, in the beginning of a script, ‘Every image, every movement of character, every nuance of dialogue must serve to establish conflict.’35 The de-cloaking Klingon ships are a clear establishment of conflict. Initially this is simply a curiosity for Sisko, as the Klingons are allies, however they are still very dangerous as being a warrior is at the heart of what the Klingons do.

The presence of the Klingons is a cause for concern for everyone. Sisko is absent from a few scenes as we see other characters react to their presence.

We next see Sisko when Kasidy’s ship is threatened by the Klingons. This is what Lajos Egri refers to as the ‘Point of Attack.’36 Egri poses the question…

What makes a character start a chain of events which might destroy him or help him to succeed? There is only one answer: necessity. There must be something at stake – something pressingly important.37

Aboard the Defiant38 Sisko responds to the distress signal. The Klingon’s want to search Kasidy’s ship, and any others in the area, for changelings. It was Sisko’s duty to respond to this signal but with Kasidy in danger it forms a link between Sisko’s personal life with his professional life.

Sisko lost his wife as a direct result of him being a Starfleet officer. The pain of that loss is one of the main themes of the pilot episode. In a later episode to The Way of the Warrior39 Sisko tells Kasidy ‘This… life I lead… this job I do… that’s what got [my wife] killed. If anything ever happened to you…’40 Due to the personal angle of this incident Sisko is perhaps a little more heavy-handed than he should have been. It answering the distress signal he even goes so far as to threaten to destroy the Klingon ship.

After this incident Sisko discusses the situation with Dax. Dax is Sisko’s mentor and is usually the first person he goes to for advice. Dax is a ‘gift-giving’41 mentor. They have a complex relationship and have known each other for many years.42

Martok interrupts the meeting and leaves a knife on Sisko’s desk. Dax understands Klingons and is able to recognise the significance of the gesture as well as read the lettering on the knife. She tells Sisko that the Klingon who commanded the ship that harassed Kasidy’s ship is now dead. ‘Martok probably had him executed for disobeying orders.’43 Sisko asks for advice and Dax tells him: ‘The longer the Klingons are here the worse things are going to get. Whatever you decide to do you’d better do it soon’44 Sisko concludes: ‘…in the long run the only people who can really handle the Klingons are Klingons.’45

Worf, Sisko’s co-protagonist,46 arrives on the station at this point. Both characters share the goal of discovering the Klingons’ true intentions. However what makes them co-protagonists, rather than ‘share the role of … protagonist…’47 is that Worf’s character arc is related to his place within society rather than the mystery of the Klingons’ intentions.

There is, as Marks puts it, a common denominator48 between these stories. Worf is trying to discover where he fits in society. His choice is between the Klingon Empire and Starfleet. Worf’s eventual decision will be influenced by discovering the Klingons’ intentions. Sisko needs to know these intentions and Worf will find the answers because it is what he’s been ordered to do. If the Klingons’ and Starfleet come to war Worf will have to make a firm choice between ‘duty and loyalty to [his] people.’49 The common denominator is this desire to uncover the mystery. For Sisko the issues are great, perhaps effecting the entire Federation; for Worf the issues are far more personal.

Worf’s position of being a man of two worlds has always been an important facet of his character. Worf served on the Enterprise, as depicted in Star Trek: The Next Generation, and this became his home. By the time of the Way of the Warrior the Enterprise has been destroyed and it is revealed to be Worf’s fatal flaw.

The FATAL FLAW is a struggle within a character to maintain a survival system long after it has outlived its usefulness.50

The Enterprise was Worf’s survival system. This episode shows how important that ship was to him. In their first meeting Worf expresses his doubts to Sisko:

I have spent most of my life among humans. It has not always been easy for me. And since the destruction of the Enterprise, it has become even more difficult. I am no longer sure I belong in [a Starfleet] uniform.51

The loss of the Enterprise makes Worf doubt himself though he is not completely lost without it. Worf tells Sisko ‘until I make my decision I intend to do my duty.’52

Since Worf and Sisko are both protagonists their relationship is complex. Marks states that ‘heroes may acquire whole ship loads of Allies… each with his or her different skill.’53 Worf, as a Starfleet officer, is answerable to Sisko but as a Klingon can command a respect from his people that Sisko cannot. This is his skill and the reason Sisko called Worf to the station and needs him as an ally.

From the dawn of storytelling, heroes have been paired with friendly figures who fight at their sides, advise and warn them, and sometimes challenge them.54

In coming to the station Worf has answered his call to adventure. In meeting Sisko he has met his mentor. Worf talks about resigning and Sisko tells him ‘I once thought about resigning from Starfleet too. I know if I had I would have regretted it. Don’t make any quick decisions.’55

Worf’s hero’s journey starts with Drex. Drex was seen earlier in the episode when he harassed Morn, maligning Odo and, assaulting Garak.56 Drex is a threshold guardian57 and falls into the category of a ‘lessor thug..’58

Worf attacks Drex without provocation. Amongst Klingons this is acceptable behaviour since they believe that action and combat are good things and tend to have little patience for inaction.

This attack leads Worf to the ‘tests, allies and enemies’59 stage of his journey. Drex is Martok’s son. In attacking him, and taking his knife, Worf succeeds in getting Martok’s attention but Martok will reveal no new information and will only say that his ‘mission will determine the fate of the Klingon Empire’ and that Worf should not interfere.

Worf continues his investigation by sending messages to various high ranking Klingons but gets no replies. It is Dax that guides Worf in the right direction pointing out that ‘… there must be someone who owes your family a favour.’60 In this way Dax is an ally to Worf. As with Sisko Dax is helpful in that she understands Klingons and may even understand them more than Worf.

Klingons have a feudal society made up of houses. Worf meets with a Klingon officer and, because of an old debt to Worf’s father, the officer tells Worf what he wants to know.

Here Worf faces his refusal61. He is trapped between his duty to Starfleet and his feelings of solidarity to his own people. This refusal comes because action or inaction will mean betraying someone. Vogler describes this: ‘Heroes may have to choose between conflicting Calls from different levels of adventure.’62 Worf has embarked on the adventure of coming to Deep Space Nine and discovering the Klingons’ intentions. Now that that has been achieved Worf is so disturbed that he hesitates.

It is Odo who helps Worf reach the decision to give Sisko the information. Odo is something of a kindred spirit. He too has had to choose ‘between duty and loyalty to [his] people.’63 From this conversation Worf decides to cross the threshold and tell Sisko that the Klingons are planning to invade Cardassia. They believe that the Dominion have a foothold on that world. By giving Sisko this information Worf has taken an important step on his journey. This is by no means a complete commitment to Sisko, Starfleet or Federation over the Klingons but it is the first step to choosing a side. Here Worf ‘must take the leap of faith into the unknown or else the adventure will never really begin.’64

For Sisko there is no hesitation of what to do with the information and he confronts Martok about the invasion. This is the start of the tests, allies, and, enemies65 portion of Sisko’s journey. He asks Martok to call off the attack. Sisko fails and Martok decides to begin the invasion as soon as he returns to his ship.

The situation has now escalated for Sisko. In a meeting he informs his crew that they’ve been ‘ordered not to get involved’66 and that they are not even allowed to warn the Cardassians. After discussing the matter Sisko decides that the Cardassians must be warned. Since he cannot take direct action in this regard he decided to call Garak to the meeting on the pretext of needing to be ‘measured for a knew suit67

Garak68 is a Cardassian69 and is the archetypal shapeshifter: ‘Shapeshifters change appearance or mood, and are difficult for the hero and the audience to pin down.’70 This description defines Garak well. Over the course of the series Garak works with and against the central characters. He is living in exile but is extremely patriotic. However this patriotism is to his people rather than the government specifically. He is motivated by what he believes is best for his people. Sometimes Garak only works with the Deep Space Nine crew because he is being blackmailed, other times he has a genuine interest in what they are trying to do. In either case Garak is prepared to do anything to achieve his goals. He has a penchant for lying, has used torture and committed murder. Ostensibly he is a tailor but he has been a spy in the past. Garak has extensive knowledge of his people’s security procedures which has been useful to Sisko in the past.

Sisko’s use of Garak to get information to the Cardassians is important to understanding Sisko’s character. Sisko doesn’t always agree with his orders and so is prepared to bend or break the rules to do what he believes is best.

Sisko’s orders come from admirals and a political authority that we do not get to see. It is important to note that the actions of the Klingons are being discussed at the highest levels of the Federation government. As the audience we only get to see the results of these discussions.

Sisko informs his crew that the Federation Council has ‘decided to condemn the Klingon invasion…’71 and the fallout from that is that ‘…the peace treaty between the Federation and the Klingon Empire has ended.’72

This plot point is of extreme importance to Worf and leads to his ‘Approach to the Innermost cave.’73 Worf is visited by Gowron74, the leader of the Klingon Empire.

Gowron was first seen in Star Trek: The Next Generation.75 In a later episode76 Worf was instrumental in solidifying Gowron’s position as Chancellor, thus the two characters have a strong bond. Within the confines of this episode Gowron tries to convince Worf to come with him to Cardassia as a way to make up for betraying his people by giving up their plans for an invasion.

Gowron is the shadow77 of the story even though he has little screen time. However it is the orders he gives, off screen, that are driving the action. Gowron is the focus of Worf’s approach to the innermost cave.78 Worf is faced with his most ‘… critical action …’79 Previously he had been a person of two worlds. Now, with the Klingon’s and the Federation no longer allies, he has to choose one or the other or neither.

The scene between Worf and Gowron is one of transition. Egri explains transition and the importance of ‘…poles with their own transitions.’80 He goes on to say ‘If your play will go from love to hate, you have to find all the steps leading up to hate.’81

In this scene Worf and Gowron transition quickly from them being allies to becoming enemies. The steps on the transition are not all shown yet this does not feel like a jump as Egri describes.

Worf’s reasons from refusing Gowron are connected with honour and loyalty: he does not believe in the invasion of Cardassia and following Gowron would mean breaking his oath to the Federation.

The reason that we do not see the stages of the transition is that Gowron had most probably decided on the ultimatum he later gives Worf before the meeting. It can also be concluded, from the way Gowron behaves, that he believes that he will be able to sway Worf.

Gowron concludes that Worf owes nothing to the Federation. Worf says: ‘It is not what I owe them that matters. It is what I owe myself. Worf son of Mogh does not break his word.”82 Gowron does not make the decision an easy one:

…if you turn your back on me now for as long as I live you will not be welcome anywhere in the Klingon Empire. Your family will be removed from the high council, your land seized and your house stripped of its titles. You will have nothing,83

Worf responds to this by saying ‘except my honour.’84

Honour is a cultural obsession for the Klingons. It is ironic that Worf, a Klingon who was raised by humans, is often shown to have a greater sense of honour than his countrymen. It is possible that it is this scene that gives the episode its title. Worf is a warrior and follows those principles no matter where they may lead, even if they were to lead to his own death. Here they have led to alienation from his people.

Following Gowron would mean that Worf would have to sacrifice his honour – because of his oath. Marks states that ‘There is no way to grow into any new stage of life without giving up the other vestiges of who we once were.’85 Worf is a Klingon serving in Starfleet. Before the episode started he had become disconnected with Starfleet, partly due to the loss of the Enterprise, and had been considering resignation. Now Worf has become alienated from his people and is, metaphorically speaking, no longer a Klingon.

After being forcibly removed from one world and disassociating with the other Worf decides to take the final step and resign from Starfleet. He has transitioned from being simultaneously an insider and an outsider of two worlds to being disconnected with both. He has decided to head away from the station leaving both worlds behind.

Sisko won’t accept Worf’s resignation. He says that Worf is ‘a good officer and right now [he] needs every good officer [he] can get.’86 Their meeting is interrupted by Kira who says ‘The Klingons have broken through the Cardassian fleet.’87 Sisko decides that they have to take a stand in the conflict. He still does not want to become directly involved but decides to offer the Cardassians his help in rescuing the members of their government.

Sisko speaks with Dukat.88 Dukat is the ‘…Chief Military Advisor to the Detapa Council.’89 Dukat is one of the most important secondary characters of the series. He appeared in thirty-five episodes over the seven years of Deep Space Nine and ten before The Way of the Warrior.

It could be argued that Dukat was an ally of the Deep Space Nine crew at this point and then later became an enemy. It is true that Dukat worked with Sisko and his crew on several occasions but he was never truly on their side. It was simply that his interests and theirs crossed over.

Here it is largely irrelevant that Sisko and his staff, with the exception of Worf, knew Dukat prior to this episode. Taking the series as a whole Dukat is the primary villain. The titular station was once Dukat’s command post for a brutal military occupation. What is important, for the later series, is that Dukat is in a new position of power. Therefore, depending on the episode, Dukat can be seen as a shadow, a shapeshifter or a trickster.

Sisko arranges to meet with Dukat and rescue the members of the Cardassian ruling body. The impending battle is Sisko’s approach to the innermost cave. When he arrives Dukat’s ship is under attack.

For a few movements Sisko hesitates. This is his refusal. The Klingons have been allies of the Federation for a long time. The peace treaty has officially ended but that is politics. The actions that Sisko must now take bring events down to the human level. It will be the first time that Klingon and Federation ships have engaged in combat in a long time. Sisko’s hesitation is directly connected to the fact that this could be the start of a war.

The refusal cannot last long. Dax, as mentor, gives Sisko the nudge he needs to leap into action: ‘Benjamin, Dukat’s ship isn’t going to last much longer.’90

Sisko gives the order: ‘Arm quantum torpedoes, drop the cloak and raise shields.’91 With this show of force The Defiant enters the battle. Despite having overcome his hesitation there are elements of the refusal that remain. Sisko sends a warning first and then orders that the engines of the Klingon ships be targeted first.

During the battle the tactical officer is injured, or killed it is not clear, and Worf takes over. He tells Sisko ‘…restricting our fire to their engines has not proven effective.’92 Manning the weapons systems is Worf’s reward93. Vogler describes the reward as

With the crisis of the Ordeal passed, heroes now experience the consequences of surviving death. With the dragon that dwelt in the Inmost Cave slain or vanquished, they seize the sword of victory and lay claim to their Reward. Triumph may be fleeting but for now they savor its pleasures.94

From the normal perspective on the hero’s journey Worf’s story may seem back to front. However since Worf is a Klingon, combat is not something he shies away from. For him manning the weapons is a symbol that he has, if only for a moment, chosen a side. He is eager to be in combat and suggests to Sisko that they need to fully commit, ‘restricting our fire to the engines has not proven effective.’95 Sisko agrees and Worf destroys one of the Klingon ships.

With Worf at tactical Sisko faces his ordeal. To evacuate Dukat’s ship he has to give the order to lower shields. This puts the ship at great risk. Worf shows himself as an ally by using his knowledge of Klingon ships and suggests a new strategy. The Defiant uses a ‘modulated tractor beam’96 to disrupt the weapons fire from the Klingon ship. This tactic gives them the vital time they need.

As the battle continues Worf becomes more involved. He has started to commit himself to the conflict even though at this stage he is still intent on leaving Starfleet and removing himself from the special world.

For Sisko this battle is just a hurdle to his goal of completing the rescue. Fighting off the Klingons and returning to the station is his reward. Now he faces the resurrection97 in the form of the Klingons attacking the station. The stakes are now at their highest as the station is not just Sisko’s command but also contains a civilian population.

Sisko is contacted by Gowron and Martok, representing the shadow and herald respectively, who try to get him to surrender the Cardassians. Sisko refuses and prepares to defend himself. Any doubts Sisko may have had have now been eliminated as the Klingons have forced him into action.

For Worf the battle represents the road back98. He started his hero’s journey as a Klingon in Starfleet who wanted to resign. With the battle aboard the Defiant and now the battle for the station he begins to move closer to Starfleet than his own people. Worf’s story is a personal one. His doubts about what he wants to do with his life are pre-existing. Without the events of this episode that choice would have still been before him.

Conversely Sisko does not have a personal stake in the situation, beyond the fact that it is his station that is under threat, yet the professional connection is still important. Sisko tries to end the battle by diplomatic means but Gowron and the Klingons only respond when Sisko’s reinforcements are near. Sisko is able to use this to bargain with the Klingons.

…Klingon against Cardassian, Federation against Klingon. The more we fight each other the weaker we’ll get and the less chance we have against the Dominion.99

The Klingons entire rationale for their actions was that the Dominion had taken over Cardassia. By saying this, Sisko points out that they may cause the exact situation they were trying to avoid. Worf is able to speak with Gowron in Klingon terms. He quotes Kayless100, a legendary Klingon figure, ‘Destroying an empire to win a war is no victory.’101

Once again Worf shows his skill as an ally to Sisko. He is able to talk to Gowron as a Klingon. With these words the Klingons stand down.

With the battle over Sisko’s story has come to an end. Vogler states that ‘…heroes face a choice: whether to remain in the Special World or begin the journey home to the Ordinary World.’102 Sisko cannot return to the Ordinary World. With the Klingons no longer allies that world no longer exists. The special world has formed around him. He is still the commanding officer of the station and still has to do his duty. Sisko’s only other recourse would be to resign or request reassignment. Either of those options would constitute a new special world. Sisko’s return with the elixir103 is simply that the station has survived. The ordinary world of the station now faces a new threat.

Worf’s resurrection and return with the elixir is quite different. He has decided to abandon the special world and head away. In the penultimate scene Sisko speaks to Worf and takes on the role of mentor. Since Sisko also thought about resigning he is uniquely qualified to give guidance to Worf. Sisko says:

I finally realised it wasn’t Starfleet I wanted to get away from. I was trying to escape the pain I felt after my wife’s death. I thought I could take the uniform, wrap it around that pain and toss them both away. But it doesn’t work like that. Running may help for a little while, but sooner or later the pain catches up to you and the only way to get rid of it is to stand your ground and face it.104

With this advice Worf returns with the elixir and decides to stay in the special world of Deep Space Nine. He becomes the station’s Strategic Operations Officer105. This is a post which Sisko has seemingly created for Worf. His job now is ‘to coordinate all Starfleet activity in [the] sector.’106 At the end of the episode the Klingons have not completely left the area around Deep Space Nine and it is for this reason that Sisko believes that Worf will be needed.

In conclusion The Way of the Warrior is a complex story because of the two protagonists. Captain Sisko is the de facto hero due to being the captain. While his actions are important for driving the plot forward he has little personal involvement in the events. Thus the actions he commits are less subject to the stages of the hero’s journey as described by Vogler. He has little choice but to act and his hesitations do not quite have the gravitas of a refusal. It is more that he is aware of the consequences that his actions will create.

Sisko appears in every episode of Deep Space Nine. In most episodes he has a problem to solve and usually succeeds. The audience knows that, as a main character, he is not going to die and that failure is unlikely.

In contrast Worf is intertwined within the story. As the only Klingon in Starfleet it is natural for him to be involved. Worf came from the outside and followed the hero’s journey. Also, as described by Marks, he has the fatal flaw of reliance on the Enterprise as his world. This survival system has been ripped away from him and this episode shows that he can survive without it.

The balance between the two characters enable two aspects of the story to be told. For Sisko the matter is one of huge proportions. It means the possibility of war and the loss of a very powerful ally. For Worf the huge incident is, for lack of a better term, brought down to the human level. This allows the audience to see the consequences of empires fighting one another and how that effects the individual.

Together these two aspects of the story form a tight symbiotic bond as the story is told from two distinct points of view, one professional and one personal, resulting in a balanced story that looks at a complex situation from different angles.


Egeri, L. (2004) The Art of Dramatic Writing. United States of America: Simon and Schuster.

Marks, D. (2009) The Power of the Transformation Arc, London: A&C Black Publications.

Memory Alpha.

Oxford Dictionaries

Vogler C. (2007) The Writer’s Journey Mythic Structures for Writers. 3rd ed. United States of America: Michael Productions.)

1The Way of the Warrior, (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

2Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (Paramount: 1992-1999)

3Formally Lieutenant Worf from Star Trek: The Next Generation (Paramount: (1987-1993) [Accessed: 2012-03-29]

4A warrior race fist seen in Errand of Mercy, (1967) Star Trek: The Original Series, (Paramount: 1966-1969) [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

5United Federation of Planets – fist mentioned in Arena (As the Federation) and in A Taste of Armageddon (The United Federation of Planets) (1967) Star Trek: The Original Series, (Paramount: 1966-1969) [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

6C. Vogler The Writer’s Journey Mythic Structures of Writers, 3rd Edition, United States of America, (Michael Wiese Productions: 2007)

7D. Marks Inside Story The Power of the Transformation Arc, London, (A & C Black Publications: 2009)

8L. Egri The Art of Dramatic Writing, United States of America (Simon & Schuster: 2004)

9C. Vogler p83

10C. Vogler p99

11The Way of the Warrior, (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

12A Theocratic despotic government intent on bringing order to the galaxy. [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

13The Way of the Warrior, (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

14Egri P1

15Egri P4

16Egri P6

18Michael Dorn in Star Trek Deep Space Nine Companion, quoted on [Accessed 2012-03-24]

19Egri P1

20Vogler P10

21Vogler P10

22Vogler P10

23Vogler P84

24Marks P123

25Vogler P87

26Vogler P87

27 These beings are the rulers of the tyrannical Dominion. They are a gelatinous life forms and so can mimic another being or become an inanimate object. [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

28A member of the station’s crew but not affiliated with the Dominion. [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

29A Call to Arms (1997) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

30Vogler P99

31Vogler P55

32Vogler P55

33The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

34Vogler P103

35Marks P183

36Egri P192

37Egri P193

38A warship added to the series in the 3rd season. [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

39The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

40Indiscretion (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

41Vogler P40

42Dax is a symbiotic creature that lives within a woman, Jadzia, who is its host. Sisko knew the creature when Curzon was its host. Thus the character of Jadzia Dax, the symbiont’s name takes the place of the family name, has the wisdom of a age despite being only in her mid-twenties. [Accessed: 2012-03-14]

43The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

44The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

45The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

46Marks P59

47Marks P59

48Marks P59

49The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

50Marks P114

51The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

52The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

53Marks P72

54Vogler P71

55The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

56The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

57Vogler P49

58Vogler P49

59Vogler P135

60The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

61Vogler P107

62Vogler P109

63The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

64Vogler P129

65Vogler P135

66The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

67The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

68Elim Garak [Accessed 2012-03-26]

69Cardassian [Accessed 2012-03-26]

70Vogler P59

71The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

72The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

73Vogler P143

74Gowron [Accessed: 2012-03-26]

75Reunion (1990) Star Trek: The Next Generation (Paramount: 1987-1994)

76Redemption Part (1991) Star Trek: The Next Generation (Paramount: 1987-1994)

77Vogler P65

78Vogler P127

79Vogler P127

80Egri P203

81Egri P203

82The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

83The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

84The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

85Marks P107

86The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

87The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

88Dukat [Accessed: 2012-03-26]

89The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

90The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

91The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

92The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

93Vogler P175

94Vogler P175

95The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

96The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

97Vogler P197

98Vogler P187

99The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

101 The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

102 Vogler P187

103 Vogler P215

104 The Way of the Warrior (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

106 Hippocratic Oath (1995) Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, (Paramount: 1992-1999)

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