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    Major/Colonel Kira Nerys
Played By: Nana Visitor

"Major, you've been breaking one too many for fourteen and a half years! Cardassian rules, Bajoran rules, Federation rules — they're all meaningless to you, because you have a personal code that's always mattered more. And I'm sorry to say, you're in slim company."
Odo, "The Circle"

The most visible Bajoran and, at least initially, The Lancer, Major Kira of the Bajoran Militia was Sisko's second-in-command and the first officer of Deep Space Nine. She resented Starfleet's presence, thinking of Bajor as having swapped one set of occupiers for another. Grew up as a Bajoran freedom fighter and is thus skilled in guerrilla warfare, as well as capable enough to take on a Klingon in hand-to-hand combat. Begins her story arc angry and broken, but slowly defrosts over the course of the series. Kira is her family name and Nerys is her given name, said last as part of Bajoran naming custom (like Japanese names).

  • Action Girl: Good lord, she beats the stuffing out of a serial killer while the equivalent of nine months pregnant.
  • Anti-Hero: She is one of the most ruthless protagonists in Trek canon.
  • "Ass" in Ambassador: Kira claims to be always diplomatic. Cut to her handling affairs... ("Visionary")
  • Big Sister Instinct: Serves as a mix of a big sis / substitute mother for Ziyal, threatening to tear Garak some new ones if he goes anywhere near her. Garak's as afraid of her wrath as he is the thought of Ziyal being a mole for her dad and killing him.
  • Bookends:
    • Kira's stint as commander of DS9 was short-lived; she grouchily hands the office over to Sisko upon his arrival. At the very end of the series, she's given control of the station again — having grown wiser, less gung-ho, and more even-tempered. This is symbolized by Kira inheriting Sisko's baseball.
    • At the start of the series, she just finished being an insurgent against the Cardassian Occupation. At the end, she is once again an insurgent helping the Cardassians fight the Dominion on their own soil. The situation is noted several times.
  • Break the Cutie: That's quite the achievement but Silarin Prin, from 'The Darkness and the Light' episode managed to do that, twice. First, he killed all the friends Kira made during her days at the Shakaar Resistance cell, except Shakaar himself. Second, he cracked her armor by trashing her actions and ideology, backing it with some good points. She managed to defend herself, but considering what she said to the rescue team after their fight, it's obvious Kira thought he was right to some extent, even talking in the same manner he did.
  • Broken Bird: The horrors she has seen... well, it could break your heart.
  • Child Soldier: She joined the Resistance when she was twelve, and was only fourteen when she fought in the Resistance liberation of the Gallitep labor camp (i.e. Space Auschwitz).
  • Colonel Badass:
    • Promoted in the seventh season. (Nana Visitor joked that Kira should open a fried chicken joint on the Promenade.)
    • Commanding Coolness: Bajoran Colonel or not, since Sisko was a Captain by that time, the highest Starfleet rank he could confer was Commander. This was done to provide Kira with formal Starfleet duds, which arouse slightly less animosity amongst the Cardassian rebels she's supposed to train. Her time as an officer has honed (rather than dampened) her instincts as a terrorist, as well: Kira learns that being subtle—using a scalpel rather than a pipe—is much more effective and disruptive.
  • Combat Pragmatist: Fair tactics do not keep you alive in the Bajoran Resistance. Kira, therefore, doesn't use them.
  • Custom Uniform of Sexy: Later traded in her padded-shoulder uniform for a high-heeled number, in the grand Trek tradition. The other members of her militia are stuck wearing the garish red and pink number.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Cardassian Occupation. In other words, she is a Holocaust survivor.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen:
    • At the start of the series Kira is always all business and is suspicious of Starfleet. She calms down after Sisko saves her life and proves that he's willing to defend the Bajorans.
    • Largely moves away from this trope altogether as the series progresses. Character Development comes into play as we learn that Kira, while always wearing "armor" to some degree, is more then capable of kindness, and genuine human(oid) emotion.
    • She mellows out a lot towards Quark after he saves her skin in "Sacrifice of Angels". She goes from casually calling him a goblin and threatening him with physical violence to pulling a lot of strings inside the Federation bureaucracy to get him a high-profile prisoner for a trade. Keep in mind she's a Bajoran citizen and virtually have no power over such matters.
  • Deuteragonist: Initially. Demoted to Tritagonist after the arrival of Worf. Nana Visitor, to her credit, knew that her early prominence wouldn't last, and very much took it in stride. She still remains a critical character, although more of her adventures take place off-screen during the Dominion arc.
  • Doom Magnet: Every person she cares about tends to either die or be forced to leave her.
  • Enemy Mine: As the station's Number Two, she slowly learned to grin and bear it when negotiating with the likes of Romulans, Cardassians, et al. Her end-series arc saw Kira deployed to Cardassia-Prime to whip them into guerilla fighters like herself.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Punch that console like you mean it, girl!
    • The first time we meet her, she's in the middle of a screaming match with the Bajoran provisional government, and when she sees Sisko the first words out of her mouth are a rather tart "I suppose you'll want the office." About the only thing we don't see in those first thirty seconds is her soft side — it takes us half a season to see that.
    • Practically every one of Kira's scenes in "Emissary" counts. From rummaging through Promenade rubble in a tank top (despite being a senior staffer), telling Bashir to stick his Federation smugness where the sun doesn't shine, her wild instructions to O'Brien to make the station move, to playing the equivalent of Russian Roulette with torpedoes.
  • Fanservice Pack: After the season 4 opener, Kira received a tighter uniform with no shoulder pads, plus high heels. She is the only Bajoran militiaman (albeit a Major) to be seen wearing it. Part of it may have also been that Terry Farrell is 8 inches taller than Visitor, but one suspects fanservice was involved also — after all, Jonathan Frakes is 9 inches taller than LeVar Burton and Burton never wore heels.
  • Fantastic Caste System: According to the old Bajoran caste system, she was supposed to be an artist. The castes were abandoned during the occupation, but her parents were still apparently disappointed and embarrassed that she never showed any artistic talent. When she attempts to be artistic during "Accession" when Akorem Laan is temporarily the Emissary, she ends up sculpting one of the worst pieces of pottery that's ever existed; it doesn't look like anything. She ends up giving it to Sisko, drolly noting that it's "a Kira Nerys original."
  • Fantastic Racism: Against Cardassians, because she was on the other end of it from them during their brutal occupation of her planet. Growing past it is part of her character development, beginning with the episode "Duet" and culminating perhaps in "Ties of Blood and Water".
  • Femme Fatale: "Necessary Evil" is Noir to the core. The episode has Constable Odo employing a gumshoe monologue to parody the Captain's Log, and flashbacks to a murder he investigated while working for the Cardassian occupiers. Interestingly enough, Major Kira turns out to be the real murderer.
  • Fiery Redhead: She makes her temper very clear from the moment she's introduced.
  • Girliness Upgrade: In year two, the outfit got tighter and heels came out, eventually leading to the inevitable Star Trek catsuit. According to Visitor, the original outfit made her walk like John Wayne.
  • Heel Realization: To a point; she never outright apologises or regrets what she did to the Cardassians during the Resistance, but over the course of the series, she comes to recognise that she can't just treat every Cardassian as equally guilty, such as expressing regret when a Cardassian is killed by another Bajoran when the Cardassian was just a clerk during the Occupation, and becoming genuinely fond of Tora Ziyal even though the girl is the daughter of Gul Dukat.
  • Honorary Aunt: Takes on this role to the O'Brien family when she had to act as the 'incubator' for their son, with Molly explicitly asking if Nerys was her aunt.
  • Hot-Blooded: Kira is very passionate about what she believes in, although she is capable of following orders when the chips are down.
    • There have been several cases where her emotions overrided her logic, like trying to open a room that was exposed to space because her friends were in there despite several security guards trying to stop her.
  • Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action: Bajoran/Changeling. Odo's species being shapeshifters, it's implied that he brings certain special skills to the bedroom. He outright transforms into a cloud of sparkling gas at one point to give Kira an idea of what the Great Link is like. It's safe to say this is not the first (or last) time his shapeshifting skills have been used for kinky purposes.
  • Hugh Mann: Ironically for a guerrilla fighter trained in infiltration and espionage, Kira sticks out like a sore thumb in alien environments. Watching her attempting to blend into The Roaring '20s or the Summer of Love is cringe-worthy.
    Kira: (wearing a stupid band-aid over her nose) I...? uh... I broke my nose.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: As mentioned, she's a former Resistance fighter, and not of the prettier variety either.
    Kira: None of you belonged on Bajor. It wasn't your world. For fifty years, you raped our planet! You lived on our land and you took the food out of our mouths, and I don't care whether you held a phaser in your hand or you ironed shirts for a living; you were all guilty and you were all legitimate targets!
    - "The Darkness and the Light"
  • Iron Lady: She scares the piss out of most of the male characters. Yes, Garak too.
  • Kicked Upstairs: Sisko requested a Bajoran national to accompany him as a token of goodwill. The Bajoran Provisional Government seized the chance to get Kira out of their hair.
  • The Lancer: At first.
  • Last-Name Basis: For the first few seasons, very rarely is she called by her given name, Nerys. Even into the later series, the only people who regularly call her this are Jadzia Dax, her closest friend, Dukat, who is creepily obsessed with her, and Odo, her love interest. And even Odo only switches over once they actually get together.
  • Love Epiphany: Or as she calls it, a "moment of pure clarity." Good thing she doesn't waste time, because it took her the better part of a decade to figure it out.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Kira gets knifed in the back and what does she do? Merely pulls the d'k tahg out of her back and judo chops the Klingon who stabbed her. When Bashir rushes over, she dismisses her injury as Just a Flesh Wound. ("The Way of the Warrior")
  • Majorly Awesome: For most of the show's run.
  • The McCoy: A darker version. The brutal Cardassian oppression of her homeworld took away most of her loved ones and forced her to do many unsavory things just to survive, with only her faith to sustain her. She can be reasonable (or at least slowly learns to), but always places her religious beliefs above logic, and she's never afraid to Pay Evil unto Evil, a la her stint with the Resistance.
  • Meaningful Name: "Kira" means "strong woman" in Slavonic.
  • Moe Couplet: With Odo.
  • Number Two: Of Deep Space Nine and, initially, the Defiant despite not being a member of Starfleet; essentially shares the role with Worf from season 4 onward. Worf plays the eager pupil to Sisko's salty teacher, while Kira shares a somewhat more fraternal bond with him.
  • Not So Different:
    • With Garak, interestingly, while as liaison to the Cardassian La Résistance. Most of the rebels were rather oafish soldiers and Garak and Kira were notable for having the most experience with sinister doings.
    • With the Cardassians who occupied Bajor. By every single definition out there she's just as much of a war criminal as them.
  • Odd Friendship: With O'Brien. When she moves in with the O'Briens as the surrogate carrier of their child, the B-plot of an episode is dedicated to them realizing their mutual attraction and coming to terms with it.
  • Oblivious to Love: Justified, as Odo admits that he'd been doing his best to conceal his feelings for her.
  • Opposites Attract: Kira is an unrepentant hot-tempered former terrorist and mass murderer who gladly tried to cause as much chaos as she could against the Cardassians occupying Bajor. Odo is a unrepentant emotionally subdued unrepentant fascist who is fixated on order and was once a collaborator to the Cardassians. The two end up falling in love nonetheless.
  • Parental Substitute: Kira Nerys' father Taban was shot by the Cardassians, and died alone in the caves. After the events of "Second Skin," Kira gains a surrogate father-figure in the form of a seditious Cardassian, Ghemor, who opposes the policies of his world. Ghemor later comes down with a terminal illness; after learning of something he did during the Occupation, Kira storms off, only to be convinced to return as "he doesn't deserve to die alone." She returns and stays with him until he dies, and then buries him next to her father.
    • The reason he came to Kira as he was dying says a lot about their relationship, and about him. He was following an old Cardasian death tradition: Giving all your hoarded secret knowledge about your enemies to someone you trust to use it in a way that will grant you posthumous revenge. Granted, Ghemor had no heirs, but to pass this knowledge down to a non-Cardassian (let alone a Bajoran) is almost unheard of.
  • Patriotic Fervor: Kira's loyalty to Bajor is absolute, even if her dismal feelings toward her own government are on display. When it looked like Kira might be called away due to a regime change, Sisko was struck dumb while Kira had to blink back tears. No matter how much she owed and respected this man, she could not turn away from her duty. ("Accession")
    Kira: ahem... If you don't hit it off with Major Jatarn, I can think of a few other people. It shouldn't be that hard to find someone to replace me.
    Sisko: I don't doubt I can find someone to fill your post... but replace you?
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Less so now that she's gotten tangled up with Starfleet, but this is definitely part of her past.
  • Power Hair: It varies somewhat. For most of the series she has it cut very short and brushed back, but in the pilot and final season, it's chin-length.
  • Punny Name: Nerys is a homophone of "nariz," the Spanish word for "nose."
  • The Quisling: Unwittingly, after Dukat takes the station back. The first part of the revelation came one morning when a Cardassian soldier brought her a mug of tea. The second was when a Vedek, who Kira asked to not protest the Dominion control, committed a Heroic Suicide by hanging herself in public. Kira then realized just what she had become.
  • Rank Up: Originally a Major in Bajoran Militia, she is promoted to Colonel after Sisko takes an extended leave of absence. She is later sent to Cardassia to help Damar organize his rebellion in embryo and teach them the finer art of guerrilla warfare. Sisko grants her the rank of commander (complete with proper Starfleet swag) in order to help her gain the trust of those Cardassians who still harbor mistrust of her old uniform. She becomes the new station commander of DS9 in the finale.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red (practically scarlet) to Sisko's Blue.
  • Religious Bruiser: A true believer in the Prophets who toasts each evening with a restful meditation and candlelit prayer. However, it is not all hymns and spreading peace for the Major, who still threatens to snap Quark’s arm at the merest hint of inappropriate advances.
    • She's devout enough that a Prophet chose her as its physical vessel in "Reckoning." The Pah-Wraiths decided to fight dirty by possessing Jake to fight her.
    • Doubtless Kira's fierce devotion to Ben Sisko was informed by his status as Emissary, as foretold in Bajoran scripture. If it comes to a coin-flip between Kai Winn and Commander Sisko, Kira will come down on Sisko's side every time.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: Her backstory as a leader of the Bajoran Resistance. (Kira admits that if she had had possession of the Defiant during the Occupation she would have destroyed DS9 and hit the Cardassians so hard that they would be begging for peace. ) Adjusting to peacetime is a major component of her arc.
  • Sci-Fi Bob Haircut: She alternated between Boyish Short Hair and this. Her version was more asymmetrical than Star Trek: The Next Generation's Ensign Ro Laren, the character who was initially meant to be Sisko's Number One.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: The Occupation was not fun for her. Like many Bajorans, she had never tasted peacetime until just recently.
  • Show Some Leg: She sometimes took on this role during the Occupation: Sneaking into Cardassian settlements and pretending to be a harmless girl or a comfort woman. Even an Occupation-era Odo fell for her act.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Kira somewhat... overestimated the threat she posed to the Cardassian security apparatus, as revealed in her dossier. Dax and O'Brien attempt to keep it out of hands, but no luck. ("Battle Lines")
    Kira: A MINOR OPERATIVE whose activities are limited to RUNNING ERRANDS for the terrorist leaders?!
  • Son of a Whore: A trip through the Orb of Time revealed her mother, Kira Meru, was one of Dukat's "comfort women" during the occupation.
  • Supporting Leader: Leads the ground assault on Cardassia Prime. As irony would have it, her troops are composed of rebelling Cardassians, whom she trains using the same guerrilla tactics that overthrew Bajor's occupation.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Her part was originally written to be Star Trek: The Next Generation Recurring Character Ro Laren, but Michelle Forbes didn't want to commit to a TV series. By a couple episodes in, however, Kira had become a character in her own right and developed her own personality and history. Showrunners later remarked that Kira — who was emphatically not a member of Starfleet and didn't trust the Federation one whit — provided much more opportunity for drama and conflict.
  • Ten Minutes in the Closet: She used to resolve a months-long disagreement between Odo and Kira (specifically, his falling under the influence of the Female Changeling) in "You are Cordially Invited" — so we never actually hear the discussion, we just find out that they've been up all night talking. Incidentally, Visitor and Auberjonois pitched a fit about this being a huge cop-out, and insisted that any other arguments between the two be resolved onscreen.
    • This argument was depicted in Worlds of Deep Space Nine- Volume Three.
  • Terrible Artist: She claims to have been the worst finger-painter in preschool. She also epically fails as a sculptor, creating "a flock of flightless birds".
  • Trauma Conga Line: Of all the main characters, she's the one who has undergone the most loss and damage (arguably aside from O'Brien).
  • Tsundere: Normally tsuntsun but liable to go deredere in certain romantic situations, usually around Bariel or Odo.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: With O'Brien, during the time when she is the surrogate carrying Miles and Keiko's baby. Both Kira and O'Brien naturally freak out when they realise they're developing romantic feelings for the other, having gotten closer during this time.
  • Uptight Loves Wild: She's the "wild" one, being considerably more fiery than the much more sedate Odo.
  • Walking Techbane: Bones had the transporter phobia. Pulaski the mistrust of androids. Kira's nemesis? Holodecks. Not only does she consider it a frivolous waste of time, Kira seems to have difficulty distinguishing fantasy from reality; when Dax dragged her into a Camelot scenario, Kira ended up slugging Lancelot before he could kiss her.
    • In "Civil Defense," Kira's unorthodox way of jimmying open the doors Ops is to unholster her gun and shoot the controls. When it comes disabling the life support system, reliable Kira once again pulls out her gun and fires happily at the console.
    • Justified when Quark attempts to trick her into a holosuite so he can scan her to make a holographic copy for a customer.
    • Finally gets over it towards the end, when Vic Fontaine's 1960s-era Las Vegas holoprogram is overrun by The Mafia, she wholeheartedly volunteers to be one of the most pivotal members of the heist group: seducing a holographic Mafioso named Frankie Eyes to keep him distracted from the rest of the group operating inside the casino.
  • What Measure Is a Humanoid?: Kira's not human, but close enough.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • More than a few people are uncomfortable about her terrorist past. She is unrepentant due to the I Did What I Had to Do nature of fighting the Cardassian Occupation. Nevertheless, it does cause her a not-insignificant amount of angst.
    • She issues an aghast one to Odo in "Children of Time" when she finds out his other counterpart sacrificed the existence of 8,000 people to save her.
  • When She Smiles: How Odo feels about her.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Almost a decade's worth with Odo before They Do.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In "The Darkness And The Light", she's utterly nonchalant when reminded that she killed a Gul's entire family (which would include his children), saying they deserved it because they "didn't belong on Bajor."
  • Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: In "The Darkness And The Light", Kira outright screams her defense of terrorism (at least when it comes to Occupiers Out of Our Country) to a Cardassian who's taking revenge on members of her former resistance/terrorist cell, who maimed him in a bombing.
  • Zip Me Up: Odo. Interestingly, this is after they've gotten together — so he kisses her shoulder along the way.

"You are the thin, beige line between order and chaos."
Lwaxana Troi, "The Forsaken"

A shapeshifter (or "Changeling", a clever double-meaning) who serves as the ornery Chief of Station Security. His obsessive qualities make him something of a maverick; however he runs the station so smoothly that everyone, from Dukat's regime to the new management, winds up acceding to his territorial nature. Functions as The Spock initially, later becoming a judge. Originally a bit angsty over not knowing his origins; eventually discovers that his own people are the leaders of the Dominion and thus the enemy, which doesn't help with the angst one bit. While not particularly strong on manners or civil liberties, when it comes to impartiality, Odo's your man.

  • Abusive Parents:
    • Odo views Dr. Mora this way for a long time thanks to the unpleasant methods Mora used in researching him, even after learning that Odo was an organism rather than vaguely organic goop. There's also the name Odo itself: from the Cardassian word for "nothing.note "
    • Because of his painful infancy memories, Odo becomes very upset when Mora suggests he return to Mora's science facility for medical treatment in "The Alternate".
    Odo: I am not going back to the center with you.
    Mora: Why? We'll work through this together. We'll solve it together like we used to.
    Odo: NO!!
    • Mora contends that he had Cardassians breathing down his neck for results and his methods motivated Odo to develop, and the two men eventually reconcile.
    • Furthermore, the Founders themselves. Their method of exploration involves sending their infants out helpless to gauge how they'd be treated. Odo was probably lucky compared to others, as the episode "Chimera" illustrates.
  • Achilles' Heel: He must revert to his liquid form every sixteen hours to regenerate. If prevented from doing so, he experiences pain and physical deterioration. Garak takes advantage of this weakness when he tortures Odo using a device that prevents him from reverting to his liquid form. It is also exploited by Section 31 via the bioweapon they used to infect the whole of the Founders.
  • Always on Duty: Odo has a little trouble loosening up, especially around the senior staff (ostensibly his best friends). This is explored in numerous scenes such as Vic's lounge in "His Way" and Jadzia's bachelorette party in "You Are Cordially Invited"; although Odo only shows up to investigate 'noise complaints', he discreetly gestures to his deputies that he's giving them the night off.
  • Always Save the Girl:
    • In "Children of Time", his future self rewrote history to save Kira. Kira, however, wasn't pleased, and it created a rift between them that took months to heal. Possibly why he defies it later, when he tells the senior staff not to purge a Prophet from her body, as she is quite willing to risk her life in their battle.
  • Ambiguous Disorder: Given his highly orderly habits, blunt affect and hyper awareness Odo is sometimes viewed as similar to autistic by fans (those on the autims spectrum especially).
  • Amicable Exes: Odo briefly marries Lwaxana Troi to help her get a previous abusive marriage annulled. While they divorce as soon as the situation is resolved, they remain good friends and genuinely fond of each other.
  • An Odd Place to Sleep: In a bucket. Beat that, Worf.
    • After losing and then regaining his shapeshifting powers, he tried to keep to sleeping in a bed (as he rather enjoyed it), but kept sliding off when he reverted to his gelatinous form.
  • And Another Thing...: A staple of his investigative/interview technique, in the great tradition of Columbo.
  • Appropriated Appellation: "Constable", Kira's derogatory nickname which he adopted. They were later to become close friends, and eventually lovers.
    • During the series, it's revealed that Odo's name is a shortened form of a Cardassian term, odo'ital ("nothing", a mistranslation of the Bajoran "unknown sample"), that the Cardassian overseers gave him during the Occupation.
  • Awesomeness by Analysis: A significant part of why Odo is such an effective criminal investigator, along with the eidetic memory and sensitivity to details that comes with being a Founder. He most impressively demonstrates his skills in "Improbable Cause", in which he utilizes his knowledge of criminal behaviour, information from an informant, and his own intuition to figure out that Garak blew up his own shop in order to force Starfleet to investigate, thwarting an actual assassination attempt. Even Garak, who is no slouch at analysis himself, is stunned that Odo was able to see through his deception so quickly.
  • Badass Armfold: To emphasize his closed nature. He also enjoyed folding his arms right before an impending arrest.
  • Badass Boast: "Doctor, if a Klingon were to kill me, I'd expect nothing less than an entire opera on the subject."
  • Big Brother Is Watching: He is always watching or listening in on Quark's outbound calls. Always. ("The Wire") He also offhandedly admits to monitoring Worf's calls after he arrives on the station, his reasoning being that Worf's detective work might not be up to standard and would require the Constable to step in and "take over."
  • Body Horror: When an illness causes his physical appearance to deteriorate, such as the Section 31 virus and the infection inflicted on him by the Founders to force him back to the Great Link. Also when Garak tortures him using a device that prevents him from regenerating, he looks like a fresh rotting corpse.
  • Brought Down to Badass: After his fellow Founders Mode Lock him, Odo quickly proves that he's no slouch in hand-to-hand combat, and still demonstrates an impressive capacity for investigation. He's still a trained security officer, after all.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: Regardless of its 'administrative' role, Starfleet really wanted no part of Constable Odo's gumshoe approach. Sisko, who manages to keep Odo from resigning in protest, admits he can relate to the Constable's forthright nature and pride in his own work. He would later praise Odo as "the best law enforcement in this sector — maybe the whole damn quadrant!"
  • Brutal Honesty: The only thing blunter than Odo's manner of speaking is his face.
  • Catchphrase: "It's been my observation..."
  • Combat Pragmatist: Odo really is an effective weapon during wartime, being able to slide out of walls and turn into ropes to trip people up.
  • Cowboy Cop: With a dash of The Sheriff. He (usually) follows the rules to the letter, but isn't above letting the small fish go free in pursuit of a bigger offender. Contrast with Worf, who doesn't share Odo's discretion and bungles a few cases.
    • Odo is actually rather contemptuous of vulgar 'law' since, in his experience, it's merely a vehicle to maintain the status quo. In "The Wire," he casually admits to intercepting all of Quark's long-distance calls, as well as the sheer illegality of it. But, if it's in "the interest of station security"... He also chafes under Sisko's new Starfleet regulations and bylaws — which he receives almost daily — and constantly protests to be left alone.
      "At the request of Commander Sisko, I will hereafter be recording a daily log of law enforcement affairs. The reason for this exercise is beyond my comprehension, except perhaps that Humans have a compulsion to keep records and lists and files. So many in fact, that they have to invent new ways to store them microscopically. Otherwise their records would overrun all known civilization. My own very adequate memory not being good enough for Starfleet, I am pleased to put my voice to this official record of this day: Everything's under control. End log."
    • It's played as a joke, but also an unsettling look into how his species thinks. In the Great Link, Changeling society is permissive and free of boundaries. And yet they are ruthless in enforcing structure on solids.
  • Celibate Hero: At first. In the first season, he admits that he has never "coupled" and fails to see the appeal of it. Subverted later in the series when Arissa takes his virginity, when the Female Changeling enchants him, and when he and Kira fall in love.
  • Character Tics: The short, businesslike nod he gives to acknowledge orders from his superiors. It's basically series shorthand for 'this is now guaranteed to happen'.
    • He also features a condescending grunt (...Huh) that almost qualifies as a Catchphrase. Usually aimed at Quark — in fact, it's the last thing he "says" to him.
  • Clueless Chick Magnet: Odo might be the sharpest law enforcer on the beat but when it comes to ‘humanoid coupling’ he is completely at sea. This despite the fact that there are multiple occasions when he meets solid women who obviously want to, hmmm, "jump in the bucket." When Garak tries to set him up with the foxy owner of The Celestial Café he completely misses his cue and lets her sashay out of sight!
    Odo: The next time you call me, it had better be to report a crime.
    Garak: (exasperated) Now that you mention it, I've just witnessed a crime.
  • The Comically Serious: He actually invokes it sometimes.
  • Control Freak: Odo gets pissed off when his furniture is moved by centimeters. He later learns his entire race is like that which is part of why they formed the Dominion.
  • Dating Catwoman: A brief sexual relationship with the Female Changeling, under the guise of learning about solids and their personal habits. Really, she had hoped to brainwash him into letting go of Kira.
  • Deadpan Snarker: When he's not being The Comically Serious. Quark is his principal victim, naturally.
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Starts the series perplexed and often disdainful of humanoid habits, such as courtship rituals which involve "bad poetry and sacrificing plants." As the series progresses, he participates in humanoid activities and comes to appreciate his colleagues.
  • Deuteragonist: As an adopted Bajoran, a holdover from the Cardassian occupiers, a Federation consultant on matters of internal security, and a member of the Dominion's founding race, Odo has inside knowledge of all the majors players in the war. His return to the Great Link is the final gesture toward peace.
  • Dirty Business: Years after the fact, he still feels guilty for having worked for the Cardassian occupiers. He admired Arissa for escaping from a dishonorable life whereas he did not.
  • Does Not Like Guns: Prefers to use shapeshifting whenever possible, out of his reluctance to take a life. He outright refuses to use firearms on many occasions. The one time he actually fights in an open battle (the episode "To The Death"), he uses his shapeshifting powers to create Combat Tentacles.
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!:
    • When Odo falls ill, Kira doesn’t bring Odo flowers or try to keep him company; Kira knows him better than anybody and brings him this week's criminal activity report! ("Broken Link")
    • When he catches Section 31's virus, he once again says he doesn't want anyone's pity, not even Kira's.
  • Early Installment Weirdness:
    • In several scenes from "A Man Alone", Rene Auberjonois uses his normal speaking voice instead of the gravelly voice he would use for Odo throughout the series.
    • Odo's hair is brown in the first season, but would be blond in the rest of the series.
    • Rene Auberjonois' facial makeup is much more severe, gaunt, and alien-looking in the first season or so. Later seasons soften his features quite a bit. Viewing Season 1 Odo and Season 7 Odo side-by-side is a stark contrast.
  • Emotional Maturity Is Physical Maturity:
    • He has the appearance and psychological makeup of a middle-aged man. However, he was adrift in space as an infant Changeling for an unknown amount of time, meaning that he is likely chronologically older than he appears.
    • Inverted in regards to how other Changelings see him. He's only been active for about 30 years, which is considered young and immature by Changeling standards.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Stomping around the Promenade like he owns the place, getting in Sisko's grill, and barking that he doesn't allow phasers in that area. This after discovering that Ben Sisko is new CO.
  • Evil Mentor: The Female Changeling.
  • Expressive Hair: Odo's hairstyle communicates his obsession with tidiness and order. Very rarely does Odo's hair fall past his face; when it does, it signals that he is figuratively and literally 'coming apart'.
    • It's also an exact copy of Dr. Mora's hair, showing that despite the anger he feels towards him, Odo still bases part of himself off Dr. Mora.
  • Face–Heel Turn: A short one in Season 6, when the Female Shapeshifter links with him. It comes off rather as More Than Mind Control, but it's a huge blow to Kira's resistance group and it nearly gets Rom executed.
  • Fantastic Racism: He's on the receiving end of this when he is a suspect in a Bajoran's murder. His office is vandalized and an angry mob threatens to kill him.
    • His fellow Changelings are baffled that Odo is not overtly racist toward "solids." The Female Changeling tries to pull Odo from his life among humanoids several times, and the Changeling infiltrator invites Odo to leave them. Even Laas is profoundly distrustful of humanoids.
    • Fantastic Slur: Odo bristles whenever someone calls him a shapeshifter. While the term is accurate, it carries negative connotations among the more hostile "solids" (on Bajor and elsewhere).
  • Film Noir: Repeatedly notes that he's a BIG fan of the Private Detective genre—especially the cases of Mike Hammer, but he's also quite fond of the works of Raymond Chandler and Dashiell Hammett. "Necessary Evil" (the episode where the character quote comes from) has a big-time Noir "vibe", down to Odo giving a Private Eye Monologue; and "A Simple Investigation" is also pretty pulp-ish, though less dark. Unsuprisingly, both are Odo-centric episodes.
  • Final Solution: Averted. He prevents a Changeling genocide when he agrees to return to the Great Link and cure the other changelings of a devastating disease engineered by Section 31.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: He spends much of his time in humanoid form in order to interact smoothly with solids. And with good reason; in "Chimera," Quark observes that Odo's liquid form triggers primal fears in humanoids, thanks to evolution.
  • Friend to All Children: Odo has always been friendly with children. He gladly jokes around with a young girl in "Shadowplay", and is seen as being a stern yet fair authority figure to Nog and Jake during their childhood. He adopts an infant Changeling in "The Begotten" and mentors a Jem'Hadar child in "The Abandoned".
  • Guile Hero: Manages to thread the needle between two factions in a telepathically induced mutiny and save the station by playing on everyone's paranoia and plotting in "Dramatis Personae".
  • Guttural Growler: Harumph!
  • Hard Boiled Detective: Doesn't play by all of Starfleet's rules, has a distinctly cynical worldview, and more than once follows his cases to a conclusion that nobody likes.
  • Hates Small Talk: Inevitably leading up to making small talk with Worf about how they hate small talk.
  • Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action: In the "Chimera" episode, he embraces Kira while in the form of shimmering light.
  • Hulk Out: An encounter with an alien gas disrupts Odo's body, turning him into a giant monster reminiscent of Yellow Devil from Mega Man. An emotional trigger is required for the change, and afterward Odo had no memories of his actions. ("The Alternate")
  • Hypocrite: A downplayed example; Odo is often an insufferable Rules Lawyer and Obstructive Bureaucrat who enforces laws unfailingly, even on children who are loitering. On the other hand, Odo can't stand other influences interfering in his work and greatly resents Starfleet regulations forcing him to do things like make records of his arrest. It becomes unsettling when you discover that Odo is a mild example of his race: he may resent his orders but he still follows them, whereas the Changelings as a whole have no laws or barriers except for those they impose on everyone under them.
    • He detests having his privacy invaded, yet has no compunctions about spying on everyone else on the station. All for security purposes, of course.
    • He looks down on collaborators as much as any Bajoran, but he himself is technically a collaborator, since he worked for the Cardassians for several years.
  • Hyper-Awareness: Odo has a knack for noticing details, which goes hand-in-hand with his analytical abilities. As a Changeling, he is extraordinarily sensitive to changes in his physical environment, which Jadzia exploits to annoy him. But even after being forced to become a solid, Odo was able to out Martok as a changeling by picking up on his failure to understand the concept of honour.
  • I Can't Believe a Guy Like You Would Notice Me: Gender-flipped. This is never actually said aloud after Odo finally gets Kira. That doesn't stop it from being written all over his face every time he so much as looks at her.
    • His surpise at Kira's love might spring from doubts that the Female Changeling instilled in him in "Heart of Stone".
    Female Changeling: She's never going to love you. How could she? You are a changeling.
  • I Don't Want to Ruin Our Friendship: After he reveals his feelings and Kira is no longer with Shakaar, Odo tells her that he would ask her out, but with the Dominion and all he wants to put it off until they have more time.
  • I Hate Past Me: Kurtwood Smith plays Odo's Cardassian avatar "Thrax". ("Things Past") Fascinatingly, Thrax gets to interrogate himself while Odo pulls at all of the loose strings in Thrax’s (thus his) prosecution of a case. The younger Odo was happy to work with circumstantial evidence and make snap judgements about peoples' character if it landed him convictions, caring more about order over justice.
  • Interspecies Romance: With Arissa and later Kira. His relationship with Arissa ended when it was discovered that she was married, and the latter ended when Odo returned to the Great Link to cure his people of a morphogenic virus that threatened to wipe them out.
  • Involuntary Shapeshifting: In "The Alternate," when he unconsciously transforms into a monster several times.
  • King Incognito: Way incognito. He's the only one of his kind in the Alpha Quadrant, but is revered as a God on his home turf.
    • Rightful King Returns: Although reluctant to acknowledge his God status, Odo's encounter with Weyoun 6 shook him to the core. He eventually woke up to the realization that only he could rein in the Dominion's soldiers ("build a new Dominion") and educate the Great Link on the ways of Solids.
  • Literal Transformative Experience: The aftermath of regaining his powers and transforming for the first time in months proves quite a change in perspective for him, especially following the experience of having to care for a baby Changeling with Dr. Mora's help; having finally learned how much he meant to Mora, he promises not to fall out of touch with him again.
  • Longing Look: Constantly at Kira.
  • Love Makes You Dumb: The Female Changeling has this effect on him for a while.
  • Magic Pants: Justified in that he creates clothing out of his own substance.
  • Meaningful Name: His original name, Odo Ital, is derived from odo'ital ("nothing" in Cardassian, a mistranslation of the Bajoran "unknown sample"). As an infant, Odo was studied in a science facility on Cardassian-occupied Bajor.
  • Mode Lock:
    • In "Broken Link," where the Founders lock him into the form of a regular human (with a Frozen Face) in retaliation for his being the first Changeling to kill another. In the Founders' eyes, this was a fate worse than death. Another failing of his newfound humanity is that he can now be punched in the face which he suffers in "The Assignment".
    Female Changeling: Oh, poor Odo. Perhaps we should have killed you. It would have been far less cruel.
    • He regains his shapeshifting ability after the events of "The Begotten".
    • Garak uses this as a torture method in "The Die is Cast", leading to some nasty Body Horror.
  • Moe Couplet: With Kira.
  • Monster Roommate: In "The Search, Part I," he briefly serves as this to Quark, literally and figuratively. Limited space on board the Defiant means that the two must share quarters, which becomes very uncomfortable for both men when Odo has to liquefy in order to rest.
    Odo: I have been holding this shape for sixteen hours. I have to revert back to my liquid state, but I don't want you to watch and gawk at me.
    Quark: I understand, completely. This is a very private moment and I won't interfere. This won't be so bad, sharing—
  • Morality Chain: Kira. In "Chimera," Laas insists that Kira is the only reason Odo hasn't left Deep Space Nine and joined the Dominion.
    Odo: I won't have anything to do with the Founders and their war.
    Laas: Odo, we linked. I know the truth. You stayed here because of Kira. If it weren't for her, you would be with our people. War or no war, you would be a Founder!
  • Moses in the Bulrushes: He was discovered in the Denorios Belt as an infant.
  • Mundane Utility: Shapeshifting is a wonderful talent for espionage. It also lets you give terrific massages.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Being a Changeling, he's stronger than he looks. Odo is shown repeatedly overpowering criminals through the series. In "Crossfire", he even stops a free-falling turbolift.
  • My Greatest Failure: Allowing Dukat to execute three innocent Bajorans as retribution for a bomb attack. There was enough evidence to at the very least arrest, but had Odo dug deeper, he would have been able to find them innocent, instead of the amount needed to satisfy the Cardassian judicial system.
  • My Species Doth Protest Too Much: The Founders protest far too much.
  • Neat Freak: Is very upset after Dax shifts all the things in his room by centimeters.
    Odo: "You humanoids are all alike, you have no sense of order! And Dax is the most humanoid person I know."
    • Unfortunately, without realizing it, by being this much of a neat freak, he's being a stereotypical Changeling.
      Female Changeling: It is not justice you desire, Odo—but order, the same as we do.
  • Ninja Pirate Zombie Robot: A starfish alien shapeshifter cop. IN SPACE!.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed: His haircut and facial features bear a certain resemblance, arguably, to Kirk Douglas.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • Before Odo became the chief of security on Terok Nor, he was popular among the Cardassians for performing a "Cardassian neck trick". What exactly this entailed is never elaborated on, but it is something Odo is not very proud of.
    • Odo apparently attempted to eat shortly after he first learned to assume humanoid form, but states that the experience was unsatisfying as he has no sense of taste, also adding that the experience was 'messy' for reasons he doesn't elaborate on.
    • During the period where he was turned into a solid he was required to eat food. During a medical checkup he thanks Dr. Bashir for the prescription to "relax." And drink prune juice.
  • No Sense of Humor: Typically, yes — Quark's humor tends to make him angry. But he is a very Deadpan Snarker, and on one occasion, pranked Bashir and O'Brien alongside Quark by making them believe they'd shrunken.
  • Not So Different: Odo has an inherent need to maintain order, displaying fascist tendencies when discussing how he'd prefer to be allowed to run the Promenade. One could infer that these same traits are likely what caused the Founders to create the Dominion in the first place.
    • His Mirror Universe counterpart is a brutal slave overseer, hinting at what Odo could have become without a strong moral code to balance out his need for order.
  • Obstructive Bureaucrat: Odo finds that acting this way—or threatening to—is a good way to keep Quark in line. Paradoxically, he also complains that Starfleet regulations are too bureaucratic.
  • Odd Friendship:
    • Odo can't resist Garak's tantalizing tales about his shady past, and Garak is similar intrigued by the Constable's reticence regarding his origins. Both are also the "last of their kind" in a sense; Garak is the last remaining Cardassian still living on the station, and Odo's the only shapeshifter (as far as he knows) in this quadrant. Both of them are unable to go home, and guilt-ridden over working against their own peoples' interests.
    • Odo's friendship with Lwaxana Troi also counts. Lwaxana is very smitten with Odo, but he doesn't reciprocate. Nonetheless, after sharing deep secrets with one another while trapped in an elevator one day, the two forge a strong bond with one another and trust each other implicitly, with Odo going above and beyond to aid her when the need arises, such as agreeing to marry her so she could maintain custody of a son she sires with another alien who was insistent on taking her child from her.
  • Older and Wiser: His other self in "Children of Time" thinks he is older and wiser than his younger, emotionally-stilted self. However, his actions lead to the colony being erased from time.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: Odo is normally composed and emotionally rigid. Whenever he loses his composure, it's a sign that something is very, very wrong. In "The Alternate," Odo's loss of composure during his heated conversation with Mora Pol foreshadows his transformation into a monstrous creature. In "Things Past," his hunched posture and anxiety are related to his shame over allowing the Cardassians to execute three innocent Bajorans years before.
  • Oppose What You Suffered: In the fifth season Star Trek: Deep Space Nine episode "The Begotten", Odo, who has had his shapeshifting abilities taken away, tries to raise an infant shapeshifter. When Odo himself was an infant, he was treated as a mere lab specimen and even subjected to painful experiments before he could convince the scientists he was self-aware, and now he works hard to protect the infant shapeshifter from suffering the same fate, refusing to allow even the man whose experiments helped Odo gain control over his own shapeshifting abilities in the first place to help. Instead, Odo chooses to raise the infant shapeshifter in a very gentle, nurturing manner. Eventually, however, the scientist who raised Odo demonstrates that raising an infant may also require a bit of Tough Love on occasion when Odo's progress hits a wall.
  • Order vs. Chaos: Odo is outright stated to be the finest security officer in the quadrant (and possibly the franchise), and DS9 has absolutely no qualms about admitting that he is an unapologetic fascist. On a Dominion scale, these urges lead to war and genocide; but they also give you clean promenades.
  • Parental Substitute: To the Infant Changeling in "The Begotten" and the Jem'Hadar boy in "The Abandoned." With the latter, he tries to teach him I Am Not a Gun, but the kid really likes being a gun and so Odo sends him to the Dominion. He has more success with the Changeling infant, but it dies before the episode is over.
  • Patient Zero: Of the Section 31 virus.
  • Platonic Life-Partners: With Mrs. Troi. Although it is non-romantic, she is the only person (aside from Kira) that he admits to loving. He even married her to protect her and her child.
    Ira Behr: I was told six months before the series began that Odo was going to be a Clint Eastwood type... And then I was told Rene Auberjonois. And I said, 'Clint Eastwood, Rene Auberjonois. Clint Eastwood, Rene Auberjonois. Does not compute.'
  • Raised by Natives: He's a Changeling who was raised by a Bajoran scientist, surrounded by humanoids all his life.
  • Rage Breaking Point: In "Crossfire," when he smashes up his quarters in a fit of romantic jealousy.
  • Real Men Wear Pink: In "The Ascent", we learn that he reads romance novels.
  • Romantic False Lead: Arissa, and later the Female Changeling.
  • Rules Lawyer: Allow Odo to get his hands on a baseball rulebook, and weep.
    "No player shall at any time make contact with the umpire in any manner. The prescribed penalty for the violation is immediate ejection from the game. Rule Number 4.06, Sub-Section A, paragraph four. Look it up, but do it in the stands. You're GONE!"
    • Shown Their Work: That's the actual rule directly from the Major League Baseball handbook (as of the episode's airing).
    • As part of his objectivity, he did it to both teams. Though he clearly enjoyed doing it to Solok.
    • He also arrests a cleric for collecting charitable donations on the Promenade without a permit, which gets him in hot water with Kira.
  • Save the Villain: He cures the Female Changeling of a deadly disease afflicting the Changeling race.
  • Shapeshifter Baggage: In the third episode, he transforms himself into a rat. (Sorry, Cardassian vole.) note  He must be an incredibly dense rat.
  • Shapeshifter Default Form: Although he normally appears as a humanoid adult male, his natural state is a gelatinous liquid. To rest, he must regularly return to his gelatinous form.
  • Shape-Shifter Showdown: With a Changeling infiltrator in "The Adversary."
  • Shapeshifting Squick: He and the Female Changeling have sexual relations in humanoid form during the occupation of Deep Space Nine. She tells him that it's nothing to the intimacy of the Great Link.
  • Sitcom Archnemesis: Quark. In his own words, "I always investigate Quark".
  • The Snark Knight: Always manages to have something snarky to say about everything.
  • The Social Expert: Zig-zagged. Odo is adept at reading subtle facial cues and body language, as demonstrated in "Necessary Evil". Despite his skill at reading people, he still finds much of humanoid behavior baffling and spends the series slowly learning how to integrate with humanoids.
  • The Spock: He may have a reputation for being a dispassionate and fair arbiter of law and order, by both the Bajorans and Cardassians, but eventually he becomes a deconstruction of the trope. As the series progresses, he's often forced to make decisions beyond simple logic, and we see more of the strong emotions beneath the surface which occasionally cloud his judgment, particularly his loneliness and disconnection from everyone else, and his struggles to reconcile the cruelty of his own people against his friends.
  • The Spymaster: He has an impressive collection of informers including people in the Klingon, Romulan, and Starfleet intelligence services and at least one Cardassian gul.
  • Stiff Upper Lip: The Founders are not above hurting or humiliating Odo to make him come home to stand trial, and once he realizes that he can no longer keep shape, he willingly relinquishes his post — but he refuses to be aided in the long walk from his office to the Defiant. He walks along the Promenade with pride despite the fact that he could turn into a puddle of goo at any minute. ("Broken Link")
    Quark: Then you are coming back.
    Odo: Count on it!
    Quark: (sincerely) I will.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: He may seem cold and unfeeling on the outside, but those who know him admit that's he's just about the sweetest man alive. Mrs. Troi and Kira are very good at bringing this out of him.
  • Superpowered Evil Side: His unconscious transformation into a monstrous form in "The Alternate," triggered by exposure to a psychotropic gas on L-S VI.
  • Tearjerker: A poignant example is when he confesses his love for Kira in "Heart of Stone." Another is when Kira comforts him as he deteriorates from the Section 31 virus in season 7. When he and Kira are forced to part ways in the series finale, despite their love for each other, is perhaps the biggest tearjerker of all.
  • Technically Naked Shapeshifter: He typically forms clothing out of himself while in humanoid form. On a typical episode, the only part of Odo that's not made of himself is his comm badge, which he hides inside himself when he shifts into a form that doesn't include it.note 
  • Technical Pacifist: Wavers back and forth between this and Actual Pacifist. Even after spending decades as DS9's Chief of Security and being a prominent figure in a galactic war, Odo never used a weapon or fired a shot. He isn't averse to others doing so, and will tackle a criminal or disable a Changeling if it comes to it. In all the show's seven seasons, Odo only kills one person.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: Odo is averse to killing, regardless of the situation. "The Adversary" has Odo kill another changeling out of desperation, and he is clearly distraught about it. In "Tacking into the Wind," Odo is noticeably upset that Kira, Damar and Garak had to kill the bridge crew of the Dominion ship they were on, rather than simply subduing them.
  • Token Heroic Orc: Until Season 3, nobody has the slightest inkling that DS9's lowly security chief is a relative of the Dominion's Shadow Dictators.
  • Unusual Ears: While in humanoid form, his ears are smooth and blunted, like his facial features.
  • Unwanted False Faith: To those Dominion devotees he encounters.
  • Uptight Loves Wild: You really can't get more uptight than Odo.
  • Viking Funeral: In his supposedly last log entry as Chief of Security, a freezing Odo expressed his wish that should his remains be discovered on the mountain, that they be cremated and returned to the wormhole where he originated from. ("The Ascent") This is not unlike the standard photon torpedo burial for Starfleet Officers; However, Odo preferred to have the ashes placed in his sleeping bucket.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: With Quark, eventually. Even early on in Season 2, Sisko notes that when Quark has been hospitalized, Odo looks like he's lost his best friend.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: 99% of the time.
  • What Beautiful Eyes!: Arissa thinks that Odo has ‘bedroom eyes’. Fortunately, even a guileless prude like Odo can still get laid in the Star Trek universe.
  • What Measure Is a Humanoid?: Odo is not human, but close enough.
  • What the Hell, Hero?:
    • Gets this from Kira when he explains that his older self erased the Gaian colonists from the timeline to save her life. She is not happy to be made the cause of that.
    • When he becomes involved with the Female Changeling and neglects his resistance responsibilities during the occupation of Deep Space Nine. Given the Founder's brutal tyranny and the Female Changeling's previous antics, this was not his smartest move. Kira angrily calls him out on it.
  • When He Smiles: Odo usually has a dour expression on his face that denotes disdain and toughness, but when he does smile, his happiness is so palpable and innocent.
  • Will They or Won't They?: Almost a decade's worth with Kira before They Do.
  • Worthy Opponent: Though he would sooner die than admit it to the man in question, he considered Quark to be this. Turns out, Quark not only felt the same way, he was much more open about it. Calling Odo this to his face in the finale. The episode The Ascent brings this up in a somewhat unique way as Odo at first finds humor in the fact that Quark was never as big time a 'businessman' (read: criminal) as he liked to think he was. Quark fired back at him that it meant that Odo had spent a decade of his life trying to bring Quark down and usually with no success on even the smallest thing, leading to him summing up their relationship to date with the line "which one of us is the bigger failure?" The look on Odo's face is priceless, and you can see that despite Quark cutting his own ego down a bit, that there is general respect for his longtime arch-nemesis there. At the end of the episode, both of them state their previous claims to hate one another during the episode were legitimate and real and that both meant what they said...and then start laughing like complete idiots about it.
  • You Can't Go Home Again: Subverted in the series finale.
  • You Are What You Hate: He hates the collaborators who sold out Bajor to Cardassia, but he also carries a lot of internal guilt for the things he did while working for the Cardassians.
  • You Just Told Me: He seems to grasp the criminal mind to such an extent that he can manipulate them into giving up at least a nugget of information. Not bad for someone who seems otherwise bewildered by humanoids. As for Ferengi (Quark and Rom), he plays them like fiddles.

    Jake Sisko
Played By: Cirroc Lofton, Thomas Hobson ("Emissary"), Tony Todd ("The Visitor")

Quark: Why can't you take after your friend here? He knows enough to stay out of Starfleet. Even a Hew-man can see there's a lot more profitable opportunities out there for a young man with ambition.
Nog: Uncle, he wants to be a writer! There's no profit in that!
— "Facets"

Benjamin Sisko's son. A rather inexplicable member of the main cast, but he was always in the starting credits, even when guys like Garak and Nog started featuring more than him, and he had a tendency to vanish for several episodes at a time. However, some of the most critically acclaimed writing and acting on the series were the Jake/Ben Sisko scenes. He blessedly avoided becoming another Creator's Pet, for the most part, via actually suffering sometimes, in his growth as a character; also showed the impressive insanity—sorry, testicular fortitude—to remain behind and try to be a journalist covering Dominion-occupied DS9.

  • Absentee Actor: In the first six seasons, he would often vanish for multiple episodes at a time; more inexplicably he's missing from the majority of the last season. Hell, Morn appeared in more episodes than Jake!
  • Action Survivor: When he first starts facing dangerous situations on his own his first impulse is to bolt ("Nor the Battle to the Strong") or freeze ("Shattered Mirror"), as it probably would be for most of us. In time he develops into someone who can take decisive action in small doses — he rescues his father from a Pah-Wraith worshipper at the top of Season 7 — but he always remains a non-confrontational character.
  • The Artifact: After how badly Wesley Crusher was received, Jake was conceived as the anti-Wesley (a perfectly normal child), and it was his friend, recurring character Nog, who would join Starfleet. But it meant that in the later seasons, as he grew up and the Dominion War was underway, Jake had very little to do while Nog, among other recurring characters, got more to do.
  • Black and Nerdy: Writing is pretty nerdy given all the research inherent in the job.
  • Break the Cutie: "Nor the Battle to the Strong." Up until this episode, Jake's always had his father around when things have gotten tough, but he's suddenly thrust into the middle of a violent and bloody war and ends up on his own. Needless to say, he doesn't take it too well.
  • Contrasting Sequel Main Character: To Wesley Crusher from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Both are children of Starfleet officers (Dr. Beverly Crusher and Commander/Captain Benjamin Sisko) who grow up in space and whose growth are shown throughout the series are shown, both of whom lost a parent as a result of Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Wesley's father died on an away mission while serving under Picard, while Jake's mother died during the Battle of Wolf 359 while Picard was assimilated into the Borg). Both differ from one another in many key areas. Wesley dreams of becoming a Starfleet officer, while Jake is content to pursue a career in writing. Wesley traveled throughout space aboard the Enterprise, while Jake mostly stayed on Deep Space 9. In addition, Wesley was oft stated to have hidden potential that made him very special, while Jake is just an ordinary kid.
  • A Day in the Limelight: In the Season 5 episodes "Nor The Battle For The Strong" and "In The Cards".
  • Dirty Coward: "Nor the Battle to the Strong" deconstructs this idea. At first, Jake is contemptuous of a soldier who shoots himself in the foot, but then he realizes just how powerful fear can be when he's caught in battle and abandons Bashir. That said, civilians like him are not expected to courageously run towards the sound of phaser fire, while that Federation soldier is.
  • Going for the Big Scoop: Sensibly, Jake decides that if he were to miss his shot in covering the Dominion occupation of Bajor, he will never hack it as a serious journalist. (It doesn't exactly ease the blow on his grandad, though.) He banks on the fact that the Dominion won't want to upset the Bajorans by hurting the Emissary's son, although he knows it's a pretty risky bet. It pays off: Weyoun is far too conscious of public relations to harm an adolescent boy (and realizes Jake's value as a potential bargaining chip in case of attack...), and he actually develops a sort of fondness for the clingy newsie—like a pet.
  • Likes Older Women: A large number of his romances end up this way, including one with a Dabo girl four years his senior.
  • The Matchmaker: He sets up his dad with Kasidy.
  • Military Brat: By the time of the first episode, young Jake is pretty tired of not having a permanent place to call home and impermanent friends.
  • Most Writers Are Writers: The crew was not particularly happy with "The Muse," especially when they realized they had strayed well into this trope.
  • Oedipus Complex: The show drops hints every so often that he Likes Older Women because of his mother's premature death. Thankfully, this never gets explored in any real detail.
  • Only Sane Man: In "Valiant," he is the only one who thinks that Cadet Watters and the rest of Red Squad should not be commanding a warship on a clandestine mission, and that they really shouldn't go after a Dominion battleship that can overpower a Galaxy-class ship. He is one hundred percent correct.
  • The Pollyanna: He's worse than Bashir in that regard. During the Dominion Occupation of DS9, Jake is honestly surprised when Weyoun refuses to send his articles to the Federation News Service after they paint the Dominion in an unflattering light (i.e. as an expansionist, totalitarian empire). After he still doesn't get it, Jake asks, what about the freedom of the press? This naturally causes Weyoun to laugh!.
  • Positive Friend Influence: To Nog, helping him grow from illiterate troublemaker to gung-ho Starfleet officer.
  • Strong Family Resemblance: Season Seven Jake is even taller than his pop, and he's getting the same hairline as well.
  • Supreme Chef: When he's not Going for the Big Scoop, he's cooking Chicken a la Sisko just as well as his old man. And his old man. He definitely inherited the "cooking gene".
  • Tagalong Kid: This became unintentionally hilarious in the later seasons, as Lofton ended up being one of the tallest actors. For example, the episode "Valiant" has a crew full of cadets who barely reach his neck trying to order him around. They have to look up to point a phaser to his chin!
  • Those Two Guys: Himself and Nog, who considered him to be a pest initially. The pair were roughly the same age, and grew up together.
    Jake: You always used to chase me away.
    Odo: I never chased you away, I chased Nog. You just happened to be with him.
  • "Well Done, Son!" Guy: Subverted, as he doesn't want to follow his father into Starfleet and worries that his father will be disappointed with his desire to be a writer.

    Keiko O'Brien (née Ishikawa)
Played By: Rosalind Chao

A Federation civilian and wife of Miles O'Brien.

  • The Chick: Since her botanical research was never relevant to the plot, her role in episodes is usually just to be Miles' wife.
  • A Day in the Limelight: In the Season 5 episode "The Assignment".
  • Demoted to Extra: While she was a fairly prominent secondary character in the first two seasons, as the series progressed, her role was largely diminished. She was even Put On A Shuttlecraft early in season 3. The Shuttlecraft Came Back the following season.
  • Happily Married: To Miles.
  • Hot Scientist: A botanist by training. She's unhappy that the station offers little opportunity to pursue her work, until she's able to find a place in a research team on Bajor.
  • Housewife: When she's on the station.
  • Overshadowed by Awesome: While she isn't a bad character, unfortunately but inevitably she gets shoved to the side because of her unadventurousness.
  • Schoolmarm: She establishes a small school on the station that's basically a one-room schoolhouse IN SPACE!.
  • Silk Hiding Steel: Has demonstrated this in many instances throughout the course of the series. A prime example is the Season 1 finale "In The Hands Of The Prophets" when she absolutely refuses to bow to pressures from Winn that she teach Bajoran spiritual beliefs in her classroom instead of the scientific method.
  • Yamato Nadeshiko: Certainly a Japanese proper lady anyway. Slightly westernized though.
  • Wide-Eyed Idealist: Which makes Miles rather uncomfortable in Looking for Par'mach in all the Wrong Places. She has absolutely no idea that he and Kira are starting to fall for each other (against their wills).

    Molly O'Brien
Played By: Hana Hatae

Miles and Keiko O'Brien's first child. Had the dubious honor of being delivered by Worf. Her baby brother, Kirayoshi O'Brien, is born under similarly weird circumstances.

  • Daddy's Girl: She has a strong bond with her father.
  • Nubile Savage: Basically becomes such in "Time's Orphan" before she saves her past self.
  • Soap Opera Rapid Aging Syndrome: She was born in TNG's fifth season, but in TNG's sixth season episode "Rascals," only a couple months before DS9's premiere, she was already a toddler who could speak. Less egregious than most examples since Hana Hatae played Molly from "Rascals" through DS9's entire run.

    Vedek/Kai Winn Adami
Played By: Louise Fletcher

"The Kai has always been the spiritual leader of Bajor, but Winn has to share that role with you. And to make matters worse, you're an outsider, a non-Bajoran. That's something she can never forgive you for."
Kira, "The Reckoning"

A pearl-clutching religious leader. She is introduced as a generic fundie, but develops into a far more complex antagonist for the heroes. Ends up in Sinister Minister territory, but has a much less cartoonish motivation than the usual: she's genuinely religious but becomes steadily more and more bitter that her gods keep, as she sees it, favouring foreigners and dilettantes over her, despite her lifelong service to them.

  • Ambition Is Evil: It's the cause of her rise to power, and her eventual downfall. She seeks to serve the Prophets, but she can't understand that her desire to be chosen by them is arrogant and selfish and the reason that they reject her which sends her down the path of evil.
  • Badass Pacifist: During the Occupation. She never picked up a rifle and fought as Kira did, but she played her own part in keeping the Bajoran people's faith in the Prophets alive. By the time the series starts, Winn is more than a little annoyed that the resistance fighters are the only ones honored and remembered for their actions.
  • Catchphrase: "My child..." It's astonishing how much Sugary Malice Louise Fletcher can cram into two little words.
  • The Chosen Wannabe: It's no secret that she wanted to be the Emissary, and that she resents Sisko for being granted this honor.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Was willing to start a civil war on Bajor... over some farmers not returning soil detox equipment.
  • The Dreaded: Her presence becomes something of a minor Running Gag for Sisko. Whenever his day is going badly and things don't look like it can get any worse, Kai Winn will show up.
  • Evil Matriarch: She is the high queen of passive-aggression. And bombing schools.
  • Establishing Character Moment: The first time you meet her, she accuses Keiko O'Brien of blasphemy and sets about turning the Bajorans on the station against her. And then she blows up the school. And then she tries to have Vedek Bareil assassinated.
  • Even Evil Has Standards:
    • She schemes, plots assassinations, undermines Sisko at every turn, but when she finds out that the Bajoran 'spiritual guide' she slept with is Gul Dukat, she looks like she's going to throw up.
    • For all her other faults, Winn never collaborated with the Cardassians during the occupation of Bajor.
    • When Kira presents evidence that the Circle, a "Bajor for Bajorans" extremist group, is actually being supplied by the Cardassians, Winn is the first person to switch sides.
    • Even she finds Weyoun an insufferable chore.
  • Evil Is Hammy: It is very, very easy to see Louise Fletcher positively luxuriating in the sheer hamminess of this character.
  • Fatal Flaw: For Winn, it's uwarranted self-importance; she refuses to accept that to be good, one must first be humble in practice, and that claiming to be a humble servant of the gods while pursuing religious power and authority is utter hypocrisy and will only lead to corruption and evil.
  • The Fundamentalist: In her first appearance, she deliberately plays this up, starting a dispute over Keiko's school referring to the Prophets as "wormhole entities" and not directly addressing Bajoran religious beliefs about them (Keiko wasn't denying any of them, the whole complaint was her terminology bing neutral). By the end of the episode, even her supporters were starting to realize how absurd this was, but it was never meant to be more than a pretext for a manufactured controversy to provide cover for her personal assassin.
  • Heel–Face Turn: About five seconds before the end.
  • Holier Than Thou: If she's onscreen with Sisko, expect her to make a dig at him for being foreign. If she's onscreen with Kira, expect "gentle" reminders about just who is the Kai.
  • Hopeless Suitor: A religious example. She has devoted her life to the Prophets and is consistently ignored by them, which makes her increasingly resentful whenever they speak to or posess someone else. To the viewer it's glaringly obvious she gets overlooked because of her character, though she doesn't see it.
  • Ignored Epiphany: In the lead up toward the finale, Winn gets a visit from the Pah-Wraiths, which utterly terrifies her, so much so she actually goes to Kira for advice(!) And then Kira suggests that if she is serious about wanting to do good, she should step down as Kai. Cue Winn making up excuses about how Bajor needs her, and that she wants to repent in order to be a better Kai. After all, if the Prophets wanted her gone, they'd have said something, right? Winn is so blinded by her own self-importance that she refuses to accept that giving up her authority is only the way to repent her self-serving ways.
  • It's All About Me: Although she's a believer, she spends most of her time as Kai trying to wrestle influence away from Sisko because the prophets chose him - an alien and an outsider - and not her, to be their emmissary. She claims to be a humble and devout servant of the Prophets, but it's clear as the series goes on that Kai Winn only cares about serving the interests of Kai Winn. It never even occurs to her that a genuine servant of a higher calling is chosen because they will not seek that calling in the first place, since ambition always serves itself first and foremost.
  • Jerkass Has a Point: In "Rapture," Winn does an epic speech to Kira on how, despite what Kira thinks, Winn suffered as much as anyone else during the occupation.
    Winn: Those of you who were in the Resistance, you're all the same. You think you're the only ones who fought the Cardassians, that you saved Bajor single-handedly. Perhaps you forget, Major, the Cardassians arrested any Bajoran found to be teaching the word of the Prophets. I was in a Cardassian prison camp for five years, and I can remember each and every beating I suffered. And while you had your weapons to protect you, all I had was my faith... and my courage. Walk with the Prophets child... I know I will
  • Never My Fault: In her arrogance, she twists those who oppose or even disagree with her as being misguided, unreasonable or even evil, in a way that always frames herself as just and correct in her actions, even when things go horribly wrong as a result of them, and others as the reason for those problems.
  • Not-So-Well-Intentioned Extremist: Downplayed. She certainly likes to think that she has good intentions... but some of her most sinister actions, such as orchestrating a school bombing or trying to have her rival assassinated, speak far more to ruthless ambition than anything else. In the final season she privately admits to Dukat that she never had the genuine spirituality that other Bajorans had (for instance, she didn't feel the religious awe the rest of her people did when the wormhole originally opened) and she's been playing at being pious because she didn't know what else to do. In short, Winn aspires to be a Well-Intentioned Extremist, but in reality she can't even manage that and ends up as just a fundamentally insecure Narcissist trying desperately to convince others- and likely herself- that she is anything else by pretending to be more religiously devout/fanatical than she actually is.
  • Obliviously Evil: She is so wrapped up in her own self-importance that she refuses to understand that having ambition to serve the Prophets is antithetical to the humility required to be genuinely good. Eventually she comes to serve the Pah Wraiths instead, believing the Prophets to be the evil ones because in her eyes, only evil gods would reject someone who desires their favor.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Subverted; while she seems to become this towards the very end of the show's run, she actually just pretends to do so in order to get Dukat help her to release the Pah-Wraiths, so that she can become their emissary. Unfortunately for her, they prefer the idea of teaming up with Dukat, who actually does want to destroy the universe.
  • OOC Is Serious Business:
    • When she shows up on DS9 to ask for Sisko's advice about the non-aggression pact offered by the Dominion. Winn's not her usual sneaky, oily self but is instead genuinely interested in his advice.
    • Likewise, when visited by the Pah Wraiths, she's so utterly terrified that when she asks Kira for advice (itself a pretty staggering move from her), she does it without any of her usual passive-aggressiveness. Right up until Kira suggests retiring, that is. Then it's back to business as usual.
  • Pet the Dog:
    • Her offscreen actions during the occupation of Bajor. Despite receiving beatings at the hands of Cardassian soldiers, Winn continued to preach about her faith and used her position to save a transport of condemned Bajorans by bribing the officer in charge with gemstones taken from temples.
    • In "Rapture" she's a little less passive-aggressive than usual after Sisko proves his worth by discovering the Lost City, and she even helps Sisko communicate with the Prophets seemingly as a genuine gesture of good-will rather than out of any benefit to herself.
  • Pointy-Haired Boss: In "Life Support," Winn revealed she had feet of clay all along. She craves high office but lacks spine to make the tough decisions, always delegating and passing the buck.
  • Redemption Equals Death: Gives Sisko key information immediately before Dukat kills her.
  • The Resenter: She can't stand the fact that Sisko is The Chosen One instead of her. Leads to crossing the Moral Event Horizon.
  • Sinister Minister: She kicks off her first major role plotting the assassination of a rival who was favored to become Kai. Shortly after that, she involves herself in a coup that intends to expel the Federation.
  • Smug Snake: For all her sugary words, Winn loves to rub her status in everyone's faces while they are barely holding their tempers.
  • Spanner in the Works: Her appearance frequently throws Starfleet for a loop. And she deliberately disrupts the Reckoning, a battle between the Prophets and Pah-Wraiths that has been prophesied for thousands of years.
  • Sugary Malice: Winn can be very passive-aggressive and loves to censure people with benign words.
    Winn: How long will you be with us, Major?
    Kira: I'm not sure.
    Winn: Feel free to stay as many days as you like. Even a week if necessary.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Played with. Winn has been up to shady things from day one, but nevertheless genuinely considers herself devout and maintains a veneer of piety. Eventually, though, after being ignored by the Prophets her entire life and forced to watch Sisko become their favorite, she chooses to embrace the Pah-wraiths, and with them, her inner villain.
  • The Un-Favourite: In a religious sense. Despite her Kai title and obstination, the prophets will never give her an audience, even if she's using orbs, that were created so Bajorans could have access at any time to their Gods. It's particularly noticeable because everyone else who tries will get one. Hell, even Quark had it on his first try. To be fair, this doesn't mean that Quark is any more favored. They found him so annoying that they nearly de-evolved him. The only thing that kept them from doing it was the prospect of more Ferengi using the Orbs. Though when she finally meets one, even kneeling before it to show her devotion, it proceeds to ignore her spectacularly. It plays a good part in her Face–Heel Turn against them. Of course, her powermongering and Holier Than Thou attitude probably has a good deal to do with their rejection of her.
  • Unholy Matrimony: More than once, she has become romantically involved with an evil man for the sake of ambition.
    • It's implied that she was romantically involved with Jaro Essa, the secret leader of the Circle. When she learns that he was unwittingly buying arms from the Cardassians, she drops him like a hot potato.
    • When she turns her back on the Prophets and pledges loyalty to the Pah Wraiths, she becomes romantically involved with Anjohl Tennan. When she discovers that Anjohl is really Dukat in disguise, she is revolted.

    Kai Opaka
Played By: Camille Saviola

  • A Death in the Limelight: Her main focus episode is the one where she is put in exile. Till then, pretty much all she does is be saintly in the pilot.
  • Fan Nickname: After her first appearance, she was immediately dubbed "Deep Space Nun" by fans. invoked
  • Good Shepherd: Genuinely devoted to the Prophets and the Bajoran justice. Serves as a contrast to the Kai who succeeds her
  • The Needs of the Many: During the Occupation Opaka revealed the location of a resistance cell in Bajor's Kendra Valley, which her own son was a member of, resulting in the deaths of said son and the 42 other members of the resistance cell. This was in order to keep the Cardassians from killing over 1,000 other Bajorans.
  • No Sense of Personal Space: When she and Sisko meet, she grasps his ear for several seconds, which puzzles him. Kai Opaka explains that she is gauging his pagh (life force).
  • Put on a Bus: She was trapped on a prison planet in Season 1.
  • Posthumous Character: Gets more development and background AFTER she is written out.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: She unknowingly sets the entire Federation-Dominion conflict in motion when she asks Sisko to find the Celestial Temple, not realizing the Temple is actually a wormhole to the Gamma Quadrant and the Dominion's backyard.
  • We Hardly Knew Ye: She isn't dead, but she was quite permanently removed after dying on the planet that allowed resurrection which was only maintained on the planet.

    Vedek Bareil Antos
Played By: Philip Anglim

A serene but quite savvy cleric who aids the Federation, and a leading candidate for Kai. He and Kira fall in love and have a happy relationship until his death.

  • Dark and Troubled Past: He has to abandon his candidacy for Kai for leaking the location of a resistance cell to the Cardasssians during the occupation. Or so it's claimed.
  • Empty Shell: Bashir saves his life after a shuttle accident, but it leaves him as a shadow of his former self.
  • Good Shepherd: A truly selfless Nice Guy who always puts the welfare of Bajor above his own interests.
  • Honor Before Reason: He is so honorable that when he learns that Kai Opaka sold out a resistance cell to the Cardassians to save a valley full of innocents, he lets himself be used as The Scapegoat and sacrifices his chances to be the next Kai, thus letting the Smug Snake murderously opportunistic fundamentalist Winn become that instead, in the name of preserving Opaka's otherwise perfect legacy.
  • Killed Off for Real: Dies while in the final stages of a treaty between Bajor and Cardassia. He survives long enough as an Empty Shell to help Kai Winn finish.
  • Non-Action Guy: He's a man of peace and spent the occupation as a monk (though he was apparently one Hell of a pickpocket). In "Fascination" he tried to deck out Sisko while under the influence of a love virus, Sisko was completely unfazed by Bareil's poor attempt at a haymaker and was more exasperated than anything else.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He's supportive of the Federation's efforts and advocates against religious extremism, as well as assisting the Federation politically during the Circle's coup. (Word of God said this was why they couldn't allow him to become Kai—he wouldn't generate any good conflict to write about in that position.)
  • Secret Keeper: The source of the above leak was Kai Opaka, who made the Sadistic Choice to betray her son's small resistance cell rather than allow a much larger number of Bajorans to be massacred.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: His withdrawing from the electoral race for Kai out of a desire to keep Opaka's name from being sullied ends up allowing Winn to cause a lot of misery for the remainder of the show's run, eventually resulting in her teaming up with Dukat to unleash the Pah-Wraiths, which nearly ends up destroying the universe.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: After keeping him alive to complete the peace treaty between Bajor and Cardassia, Kai Winn says it's time to pull the plug.

    Lt. Commander Michael Eddington
Played By: Kenneth Marshall

"People don't enter Starfleet to become commanders, or admirals for that matter, it's the captain's chair that everyone has their eye on. That's what I wanted when I joined up. You don't get to be a captain wearing a gold uniform."

Initially assigned to Deep Space 9 as Chief of Starfleet Security after first contact with the Dominion. This was done in part due to a lack of trust Starfleet Command had for Odo.

  • Anti-Villain: His amiability and passionate leadership of the Maquis belie his willingness to further the cause of the Maquis through whatever means necessary, which includes deploying bioweapons against Cardassian civilians.
  • Batman Gambit: The message he gets about the Maquis' message about their final missile attack on the Dominion, all according to Eddington's orders. The Maquis cooked it up so that Starfleet will let Eddington out on the pretext of disarming said attack—which doesn't exist. It's so Eddington can rescue what's left of them.
  • Consummate Professional: Prior to his betrayal, Eddington is pleasant but professional in his behavior without the moodiness that other professionals on the show have. He practically screams "model Starfleet Officer." He's even open about his ambitions for his career. Which really helps him do his work for the Maquis without the Federation suspecting.
  • Defector from Decadence: How he justifies joining the Maquis.
  • Didn't See That Coming: He really didn't see Ben Sisko using his own tactics against him.
  • Father to His Men: Whatever else he was, Eddington truly, deeply cares about the Maquis and the people under his command. No matter what the situation, he will do whatever he has to do to protect them, and is devastated when the Dominion wipes them out.
  • Glory Seeker: He sees himself as a dashing hero of old, valiantly rallying an oppressed people and leading them to defeat villains and regain their freedom — and the method he sells them is always glorious victory in battle. This makes him rather difficult to reason with, as he's fixated on glory and convinced he's the hero for pursuing it — and isn't always wrong, at that. After he dies, Jadzia points out that his death was exactly the kind he wanted — going out in a heroic sacrifice that his people will sing songs about for years to come.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: He dies in a last stand against the Dominion to let the remnants of the Maquis escape. Dax suggests this was a bit of a Senseless Sacrifice: he could have gotten away in time, but he wanted to look like a hero.
  • Hypocrite: His use of bioweapons on a Cardassian colony? That's war. Sisko's use of bioweapons on a Maquis colony? An unthinkable war crime.
  • It's Personal: Eddington accuses Sisko of behaving this way in "For the Uniform." He's not far wrong.
  • It's All About Me: Eddington frames every action Sisko and Starfleet takes against him and the Maquis as if they were petty children picking on the Maquis for making them look bad. While he has a point, at least in part where Sisko's concerned, he mostly uses it to ignore any legitimate reasons Starfleet has for hunting them or any negative impact his actions have, and Sisko eventually pegs him for blaming others so he can keep his self-image as a hero. This gets especially noticeable in "Blaze of Glory," where Sisko is trying to move past their enmity for the greater good while Eddington literally can't move forward without framing Sisko's every action as a personal slant against himself.
  • Jumping Off the Slippery Slope: His actions in "For the Uniform" smacks of this. Originally content to steal from the Federation and attack Cardassian supply ships, he moves on to leaving a man on an asteroid to die of asphyxiation and bombing defenseless Cardassian civilians with bio-weapons. Next he ends up attacking Federation ships and even cripples a fleeing civilian escape ship to use as a decoy.
  • Mauve Shirt: He's a minor Recurring Character who acted as a By-the-Book Cop sometimes. It probably made it more shocking that he joined the Maquis.
  • The Mole: He works with the Maquis and eventually abandons the "mole" part by running off with a bunch of replicators.
  • Nice Guy: Easily one of the most polite and considerate officers in Starfleet. Even after his Face–Heel Turn, apart from "The Reason You Suck" Speech (see below), he prefers to remain in Friendly Enemy territory with Sisko and the DS9 crew. The feeling is not mutual.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Lampshaded by Sisko. Eddington's renewed offensive against the Cardassians is what helped drive them into the arms of the Dominion.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: He delivers one of the most brutal and poignant in the entire franchise when he outright declares that the Federation is worse than the Borg because at least the Borg are honest about their intentions to assimilate someone. In his eyes, the Federation is more insidious because it does the same thing with its "victim" none the wiser.
  • Smug Snake: After defecting, his smarminess and conceit really come into play, and he clearly enjoys taunting Sisko.
  • Undying Loyalty: To the Maquis. Sisko explicitly says that Eddington was the most loyal man he ever knew, just not to the Federation.
  • You Watch Too Much X: Eddington's a big fan of Les Misérables and sees himself as Valjean, with Sisko as Javert. Sisko and Dax use this against him when they figure it out by doing what Javert did not: embrace the "villainy".

    Kasidy Yates
Played By: Penny Johnson

Sisko: I am a Starfleet officer — the paragon of virtue.
Kasidy: You're more like a parody of virtue.
—"For the Cause"

A freighter captain who is introduced to Ben by Jake, who thinks his dad needs to start dating again. She and Sisko hit it off quite nicely. Kasidy doesn't always see eye-to-eye with Ben and isn't afraid to tell him so, but they form a very strong relationship and eventually marry.

  • Adult Fear: She does worry about Sisko's many dangerous missions. When she gets pregnant, she's afraid that the Prophets' warning is about the baby.
  • The Captain: Of an independent freighter. She takes that job as seriously as Sisko takes his job.
  • Game of Nerds: She is one of the small number of baseball enthusiasts in the 24th century.
  • Happily Married: To Sisko in the last season, although the Prophets give them a little trouble in getting there.
  • Lethal Chef: A terrible cook. Her one attempt ends with a room full of smoke, and some very burnt peppers.
  • Red Herring: Her first few appearances made it seem like she was a Dominion spy. The Klingons certainly thought she was one.
  • Recurring Character: Due to the nature of her job, she's often away from the station. She becomes a steady member of the cast when she moves in with Sisko in Season 7.
  • Second Love: For Sisko.
  • Stay in the Kitchen: Sisko pulls strings to get her taken off the active list when she says she intends to continue doing her job despite the war. She is very unhappy about it and has him undo it.
  • Your Terrorists Are Our Freedom Fighters: She believes the Maquis to be the latter and smuggles supplies to them, resulting in some jail time.

    Shakaar Edon
Played By: Duncan Regehr

Leader of the eponymous Shakaar resistance cell during the Cardassian Occupation, and former comrade-in-arms of Major Kira. He became a farmer after the Occupation ended, and was eventually elected as First Minister of Bajor.

  • Absentee Actor: Shakaar is seen in only three episodes, though mentioned many other times. Planned appearances were removed from several scripts due to budgetary reasons or because the script was already too crowded. Ironically, this is exactly why his counterpart from the Siege was killed off.
  • Call to Agriculture: What he did after the Cardassians were finally ousted from Bajor... until Bajor needed him again to keep the Church and State separate, when Kai Winn tried to make a bid to be First Minister.
  • The Casanova: Described by Gul Dukat as such to Major Kira. Whether or not this is true is suspect, given Dukat's likely ulterior motives.
  • Determined Homesteader: His first appearance is a conflict over Kai Winn over some land reclamation devices, which he and his neighbors don't want to give up until they're actually done making the land arable again.
  • Romantic False Lead: For Odo and Major Kira. Probably his most defining characteristic.
  • Unexpected Successor: From farmer to fugitive to First Minister in about a month or so.

    Joseph Sisko
Played By: Brock Peters

Sisko's father. Joseph Sisko is the owner of a very successful restaurant in New Orleans, which he is loathe to leave for any reason. He loves his son and grandson dearly and worries about them a lot.

  • Cassandra Truth: He pointed out how easily a Changeling could fool a blood test immediately. This is never taken seriously by anyone, even after everyone finds out the idea of mass blood testing was introduced by a Changeling infiltrator as a cover and is useless.
  • Cool Old Guy: He's a lively, entertaining restaurateur who's still running the kitchen himself into his sixties.
  • Good Parents: Sisko often quotes Joseph's advice, and Joseph provides both comfort and honest criticism to his son.
  • Grumpy Old Man: He has his moments.
  • Meaningful Name: Joseph, father of Jesus Christ, meet Joseph, father of the Emissary of the Prophets.
  • Morality Chain: To Sisko. His actions and criticism during the Changeling Scare on Earth and the martial law it creates, causes Sisko to drop his paranoia, cool off his head and start investigating the whole ordeal instead of enforcing martial law and blood checks.
  • OOC Is Serious Business: When he leaves Earth, it is treated as a big deal. His coming to his son when he felt like he lost his way in "Far Beyond the Stars" helped Sisko find himself again. Later he joins his son in looking for the Orb of the Emissary.
  • Supreme Chef: You have to be one if you want customers to go to your restaurant in a century where everyone can effortlessly order everything they want with a replicator.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: He gives a good one to his son when he's starting to think his own father is a Changeling.

    Vice Admiral William Ross
Played By: Barry Jenner

"I don't like it. But I've spent the last year and a half of my life ordering young men and young women to die. I like that even less."

A senior Starfleet military commander and Captain Sisko's direct superior during the Dominion War.

  • Ascended Extra: Like Garak, Ross was supposed to simply be a background character with few lines, but Barry Jenner did a damn good job portraying a reasonable Starfleet admiral so the producers brought him back.
  • Big Good: For the Federation side during the war. Even Sisko, the previous title holder for the series, looks up to him, both in terms of rank and guidance.
  • Broken Pedestal: To Bashir.
  • The Chains of Commanding: A big part of what made Ross so reasonable and likeable, even after his deal with Section 31. While other Starfleet admirals would give unpleasant orders and then leave to let the heroes deal with the ramifications, Ross actually stuck around and the audience could see the toll of having to be in command weigh on him.
  • Cultured Warrior: Fittingly, he quotes Douglas MacArthur's speech from the Japanese surrender ceremony after the Female Changeling signs the peace treaty ending the Dominion War.
  • Four-Star Badass: Very good at his job, even if he's less-than-thrilled about getting his hand cut open for Klingon ceremonies.
  • Frontline General: He personally leads the final attack on Cardassia Prime in the series finale, having previously spent most of the war behind the lines.
  • Good Is Not Soft: Nice, reasonable, looks after his men and is willing to frame a Romulan senator for treason if it means helping the Federation win the war.
  • I Did What I Had to Do: His explanation for working with Section 31. He's not proud of it, but if framing Senator Creetak for treason means the Romulans will stay allied with the Federation, so be it.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: He's Douglas MacArthur without the ego.
  • Perpetual Frowner: He looks like a man who's just walked down 50 miles of bad road. (Considering that he's leading much of Starfleet through a long and grueling war, he really is walking down a bad road.) The one time he broadly smiles is when he officiates Ben and Kasidy's wedding.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: If he is not the most reasonable Starfleet admiral in the entirety of Trek, then he is certainly the second most. He's not without his foibles, though.
  • Screw the Rules, I Make Them!: While on the scent of a Section 31 plot to install its man in the Romulan Council, Bashir is horrified to learn that Ross is the one pulling the strings. When confronted about this, Ross merely quotes, "Inter arma enim silent leges." (In time of war, the law falls silent.)

    Luther Sloan
"I live in a world of secrets, of sabotage and deceit."
Played By: William Sadler

"The Federation needs men like you, doctor. Men of conscience. Men of principle. Men who can sleep at night... You're also the reason Section Thirty-One exists — someone has to protect men like you from a universe that doesn't share your sense of right and wrong."

An operative of Section 31, a clandestine black ops organization within the Federation and independent of Starfleet. Sloan and the others of his agency have dedicated their lives to eliminating threats to the Federation's survival by any means necessary, even if it means violating the very freedoms and principles that Federation citizens are supposed to hold dear.

  • Affably Evil: He's very polite to Bashir in all their dealings, even when trying to kill him. He's genuinely sorry that Odo is going to die from the disease that Section 31 infected him with and apologizes for being unable to provide the cure.
  • Batman Gambit: This is how he manipulates Julian in "Inter Arma Enid Silent Legis." When Julian tries to protect the "patriotic" Senator, Sloan engineers a situation that will get Julian to bring about her arrest. Sloan notes that a patriot would put Romulan interests above Federation interests, but Julian equates "patriotic" with "good."
  • Beneath the Mask: He's a consummate professional in his appearances, but as noted in the above quote, he suggests that he somewhat envies Bashir for being so idealistic and able to sleep at night. Bashir is skeptical of this, though, and sees the claim as just a cry for appreciation and validation.
  • Clasp Your Hands If You Deceive: Quite fond of the trope.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: He claims to have had a wife and son that he didn't get to see very much due to his work with Section 31. Of course, because Sloan's such a devious liar, the veracity of this information is dubious.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Quite fond of using Batman Gambits to accomplish his goals. It becomes his undoing when Bashir uses one to lure him to the station to be captured and interrogated about the cure for the Founders' disease.
  • Manipulative Bastard: He will get Julian to be a Section 31 agent not only whether he likes it or not, but whether he knows it or not.
  • Married to the Job: Assuming anything we saw in his mind was real (and that's a big assumption), he had a large group of loved ones and friends he cared for but could never find the time to spend with.
  • Master Actor: Puts on a convincing show as a paranoid Federation agent recklessly out for revenge.
  • Multiple-Choice Past: The validity of just about every biographical detail we are given about him is questionable.
  • Shadow Archetype: He represents that part of Bashir that wants to be a daring and quick-thinking spy. However, Bashir has a romantic view of the work, while Sloan demonstrates how it can be a messy job full of morally questionable decisions at best. Whereas Bashir is disgusted to just be a pawn in such a scheme and expresses moral outrage about what he sees, Sloan soldiers on under the belief that the ends justify the means.
  • Silly Rabbit, Idealism Is for Kids!: To Bashir, frequently.
    Sloan: Let's make a deal, Doctor: I'll spare you the "ends justify the means" speech and you spare me the "we must do what's right" speech. You and I are not going to see eye to eye on this subject, so I suggest we stop discussing it.
  • Stealth Hi/Bye: Though this trope is not quite as impressive with Federation technology, the fact that Sloan manages it without anyone noticing is still an accomplishment.
  • Taking You with Me: He tries to do this to Miles and Julian by keeping their consciousnesses inside his brain as he dies. Miles drags them out before they can find out if this actually would have worked.
  • Trespassing to Talk: His favorite way of making his presence known to Bashir is to appear in a chair near Bashir's bed while he's asleep. Bashir later uses this predictability against him.
  • Unreliable Narrator: Inside his own head. When Bashir and O'Brien take a Journey to the Center of the Mind, they realize that they can't trust anything they encounter because Sloan is trying to distract and hinder their efforts.
  • Utopia Justifies the Means: His character quote just about sums it up.
  • Villain Respect: He often compliments Bashir for his keen mind and ability to figure out complex schemes, both of which are invaluable in Sloan's line of work.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: It's unclear if he ordered the genocidal Changeling disease, but he's certainly unwilling to let anyone find a cure.

    Jaro Essa
Played By: Frank Langella

A Bajoran and the leader of the terrorist group the Alliance for Global Unity, better known as the Circle.

Played By: William Lucking

A former Bajoran freedom fighter who served alongside Kira.

  • An Arm and a Leg: Before going on a mission to rescue Kira and Shakaar, he prayed to the Prophets and offered his life. Fortunately, the mission only cost him an arm, and feeling that the Prophets were being generous that day, he hasn't gotten a replacement.

    Li Nalas
Played By: Richard Beymer

A legendary war hero and resistance fighter who, in reality, had all of his victories either falsely attributed to him or exaggerated, something that gives him no end of grief.

  • Accidental Hero: He shot a Cardassian he had surprised in his undies. Later retellings turned it into an epic clash.
  • Badass on Paper: He was a capable resistance fighter, yes. But he's nowhere close to the almost godlike figure the resistance turned him into.
  • Humble Hero: He was telling the truth when he told his comrades that he simply shot Gul Zarale, whom he caught unaware and unarmed, but as he tells Sisko, they were already convinced he was just being modest.
  • Metaphorically True: He says the popular account of his fight with Gul Zarale is a lie. Sisko encourages him to think of it as a legend, instead.
  • Never Found the Body: After he was reported killed. He was actually being held prisoner until Kira and O'Brien rescue him.
  • Refusal of the Call: Not long after being rescued, he tries to skip town after realizing the responsibility his inflated reputation entails. Fortunately for everyone except him, he doesn't succeed.
    Sisko: The Nanut isn't scheduled to return from the Gamma Quadrant for two years.
    Li: Actually, I planned on staying considerably longer.
  • Slave to PR: He has been shackled by his fame since he gunned down the defenseless Gul Zarale. And he can't stand it.

    General Krim
Played By: Stephen Macht

The commander of the Bajoran military who is secretly in league with the Circle.

  • Graceful Loser: After The Circle is broken once their secret Cardassian support is exposed, he calmly returns control of DS9 to Sisko.
    Krim: (to Sisko) Commander, since the provisional government has prevailed, I believe it is appropriate to return the command of this station to Starfleet. (to Li Nalas) Well fought, sir.
  • Worthy Opponent: He, Sisko, and Li have great respect for each other. (The scripts for the episodes he appears in compare him to General Rommel.)

    Admiral Leyton
Played By: Robert Foxworth

Sisko's former captain, now an Insane Admiral who leads a conspiracy to cause a military takeover of Earth.

  • Broken Pedestal: Sisko is clearly crestfallen that Leyton betrayed his oath of service.
  • Graceful Loser: When it becomes clear that his coup has failed, he calmly removes his insignia and surrenders.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: He attempts a Military Coup against the Federation government not out of a lust for power, but because he's concerned Earth isn't prepared for a Dominion invasion or Changeling infiltration.

    President Jaresh-Inyo
Played By: Herschel Sparber

The president of the Federation.

  • Gentle Giant: Thanks to Herschel Sparber standing nearly seven feet tall and his character being a Grazerite (a species of peaceful herbivores), he comes across as almost timid and unwilling to disrupt the lives of Earth's citizens.
  • Our Presidents Are Different: He tries to be President Personable, but is so easily fooled he crosses into President Buffoon territory.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: A deconstruction. He not only listens to the heroes, he also listens to, and is easily fooled by, the villains. The villain happens to be his Starfleet chief of staff, so it's quite reasonable for Jaresh-Inyo to heed Leyton's advice.

    The Prophets 

The Prophets

Played By: Various

An enigmatic race of non-corporeal beings who live in an extratemporal dimension contained within the Bajoran wormhole.

  • Benevolent Precursors: Played with. At first they don't even know who the Bajorans are, and are extremely bemused by the fact that they built their entire society around the imagined teachings they received through the Orbs. As time passes, and likely to aid in the inevitable war with the Pah-Wraiths, they begin using their time-warping abilities to go back and guide the development of Bajoran society, and even Ben Sisko's conception.
  • Characterization Marches On: After their first two appearances showed them as being indifferent at best, hostile at worst towards corporeal life — which the writers soon realized made them too similar to the Q — they're rewritten into a kindly race of godlike beings who have been taking a special interest in the Bajorans and Sisko, and guiding the development and lives of both.
  • A Form You Are Comfortable With: We never see what true form the Prophets have, or even if they have one at all. Instead, they're depicted via having them take on the forms of the regular characters, plus any guest stars who might happen to be featuring that week.
  • Stable Time Loop: Sisko first encounters the Prophets (after centuries of Bajorans trying and failing to find them), assuming them to be Benevolent Precursors who guided the development of Bajoran society, but they turn out to be nothing of the kind. However, their encounter with Sisko changes their outlook on corporeal life, and so they actually go back and start guiding the development of Bajoran society, and even ensure Sisko's birth in order to get Sisko to the point where he can teach them the lesson.
  • Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: How they're depicted in their first two appearances. Starting in Season 4, the show drops this and begins more whole-heartedly embracing the religious symbolism of the Prophets.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Their first appearance has them nearly killing Sisko for trespassing in their domain, and then stranding Dukat and his crew in the Gamma Quadrant in a disabled ship until Sisko talks them around. Their second episode has them Mind Rape Zek to rid him of what they see as undesirable personality traits. In their third appearance however, they bring Akorem Laan from the past to help Sisko accept his role as Emissary, and they take on a much more kindly disposition from thereon out, to the the point of erasing a huge Dominion fleet from existence once they become aware how much of a threat it poses to Sisko and Bajor.

Alternative Title(s): Federation And Bajor


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