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     Why did Jadzia cover her spots 
  • In Trials and Tribble-ations, why did Jadzia cover up her spots? She herself said that one of Dax's previous hosts, Emony, met McCoy at the University. And Curzon was an old friend of Koloth. That being the case, the Trill were known by the Federation at the time, so why would Jadzia need to pose as a human?
    • Because there are no other trills on board the Enterprise. An observant man aware of that fact would start asking questions.
      • For that matter it may be the case that no Trills served in Starfleet at this stage.
    • Anything that draws attention to her is undesirable.
    • Curzon and Koloth also aren't friends yet, which Jadzia makes reference to when she says she'd "love to see [Koloth] at his prime". At this point, Curzon wouldn't even be Joined with Dax for another 18 years and might not even be an adult yet.

     Putting a murderer in a combat-trained SF Officer's body 
  • In Facets Jadzia goes through a ritual that puts the past hosts in other people's bodies. Not that strange until they put Joran in Sisko's body. They put the mind of a man so wild that he murdered a person in the body of a combat trained officer? Without even restraints or anything more secure than a force field? What did they intend to do if there was a power outage? Send a warning across the station to watch out for the mighty Sisko Fist? You even see the flaws of the idea in the episode, Jadzia was crazy enough to turn off the force field without anyone else in the room or any confirmation that Sisko really was in control (which nearly got her killed).
    • Technically all of them except Quark and Leeta are trained soldiers. It would have been dangerous no matter who they put Joran in. Sisko volunteered because A) he didn't want to make anyone else take the risk, and B) he thought he could control Joran. In the unlikely event of a power outage Jadzia would have knocked Sisko out. And if she didn't, the door to the detention area was locked anyway.
    • I think a more significant issue is that they put Joran in the body of someone who has the authorization codes and voiceprint to activate the self-destruct sequence.
      • Aside from when Curzon merged with Odo, it didn't seem like the Dax personalities were able to access the minds of the people whose bodies they were inhabiting. The only apparent connection between host and Dax personality was that the host could reemerge at will, which the Dax personality knew the host wanted, as demonstrated by Quark interrupting his part of the ceremony. Therefore, Joran in Sisko's body might have had the voice print to do it, but not the knowledge of the code needed. I think it would have been brought up if it was likely to be a problem though.
    • Joran also went through some character retconning/development over the series. When we first learned about him he simply killed a guy. By the time we get to Ezri he's turned into Hannibal Lecter.

     Symbiont relationships 
  • We're told several times throughout the series that the number of Trill symbionts available for joining is pretty small. And in "Rejoined" we find that joined Trills are prohibited from having serious relationships not only with living friends and family of previous hosts, but also with the new hosts to symbionts that past hosts used to have a serious relationship with, even if it was several hosts back. And there doesn't seem to be a statute of limitations on this. If we accept that joined Trills, like any other "elite" subset of any society, would prefer to seek each other's company, doesn't it follow that symbionts would run out of people to associate with eventually?
    • For that matter, what's with Jadzia getting posted to the station commanded by one of Curzon's closest friends, or her running off with three Klingons to fulfill an oath that Curzon made with them, or Ezri getting sent to DS9 to replace Jadzia? In "Rejoined", Jadzia specifically says that the taboo does not apply only to marital/sexual relationships, but to close interpersonal bonds of all kinds, so isn't this episode massively inconsistent with the entire rest of the series? Was it just an excuse to get Terry Farrell kissing another woman on camera?
      • Ezri didn't replace Jadzia at DS9 as Jadzia was a science officer, Ezri was a counsellor. It was just that Ezri never wanted to be joined, so had a harder time of dealing with her now close connections to the DS9 crew, so stayed due to the familiarity.
      • I think some people find it harder to deal with some of these interpersonal relationships over others.
    • There's a ton of inconsistency about the Trill within DS9 (and a ton more if you include "The Host"). Wouldn't Ezri's dalliance with Worf be just as taboo as the events of "Rejoined"? As you say, the fact that Jadzia holds herself to Curzon's blood oath stands firmly at odds with her self-declaration "I'm not Curzon" mere episodes earlier in "Playing God"?
      • There is a big difference between having a different personal style versus whether or not to honor an obligation. In the case of "Blood Oath" it could have been that the oath in question bound not just Curzon (host), but Dax (the symbiont), whereas, in "Playing God", Jadzia Dax was emphasizing the differences in her personal style. Indeed, her attitude in "Blood Oath" is entirely consistent with that in the season one episode "Dax", where she keeps Curzon's promise at great risk to herself.
      • I think being a Dax as similar to real life family structure ("Dax" does become in effect the family name of each host after all, like Curzon Dax, Jadzia Dax, and Ezri even changed her original "Tigan" name to Dax after being joined, effectively becoming "married" to the Dax symbiote). So Jadzia's relationship to Curzon could be seen as his "daughter"; she is her own person with her own way of doing things, but her personality is partly influenced by him and she would likely keep any family secrets or promises out of a sense of loyalty to her "father".
    • Perhaps the provision is only loosely enforced regarding non-Trill? The main reason to prohibit ongoing relationships is to allow the symbiote to have new experiences because it's extremely long lived (if not immortal) and as such could continue repeating relationships over the course of several lifetimes with no net gain. On the other hand, races such as Human or Klingon are mortal and as such less of an issue as they inevitably die, forcing the Trill to make new friends. Even Vulcans and Ferengi only seem to live a couple of centuries, not that long compared to the Trill symbiote.
  • I once read an explanation that theorized that Erzi was posted to DS9 to benefit Ezri, rather than Dax. That since she was never prepared for the side effects of the joining they thought it would help her to be in a familiar location, at least temporarily. It's utter fanwank of course but it seemed to have a certain logic to it.
  • Word of God (found on Memory Alpha) from the show's writers and producers says that the main reason for the rejoining taboo is so that joined Trill don't perpetually reassociate and create an aristocracy of the joined, which would be bad both for Trill society (where joined individuals are already considered somewhat elite) and the host (who would be subsumed by the symbiont's desires). So yeah, the provision is Trill-specific and doesn't apply to cases like Sisko or Worf.
    • That certainly makes sense, but as with many Word of God decrees, one wonders if it would have been so hard to find a place to say this in an episode.
    • We're shown that the Federation won't let a planet in if it has a caste system, maybe that's Trill's way of "finding a loophole" to be a member of the Federation. (Assuming they are; I guess it's never explicitly stated.)
      • We're told that the Federation prohibits discrimination based on caste, not caste systems period.
      • Actually we are told this. It's mentioned in the episode with the faux-Emissary that if he re-instituted the old Bajoran caste system it would make them ineligible for membership.
      • The line in question is "You realise that caste-based discrimination goes against the Federation charter. If Bajor returns to the D'jarra system, I have no doubt that its petition to join the Federation will be rejected." The distinction between "has a caste system" and "engages in caste-based discrimination" is a fine one, since it seems inevitably that if there are castes, people are restricted by law and custom from acting outside of them.
  • Since the Dominion War was going go poorly and the Federation had done some ethically questionable things already, what if Ezri was ordered back to DS9 once she got Dax explicitly because she would already be familiar with the people and station. Given its strategic value, I could see Starfleet saying "damn the taboo, we're at war" and fixing it later.

     But the Other Dax did it! 
  • In a culture that regularly changes hosts, why don't the Trill have a precedent for crimes committed by a previous host?
    • They probably don't prosecute. One of Jadzia's previous hosts committed murder, they simply erased any record of him and repressed the memories within the symbiont. Odds are they just write any problems like that off as a problem with the host. Hell, Dax has two, possibly three, hosts (the murderer, the guy who stole it for a few hours and possibly the future one from that one planet) that commit serious crimes and nobody ever seems to think there may be a problem with Dax itself for allowing the actions to happen.
    • Or it's something along the lines of "What kind of moronic government would punish one Trill for the crimes of another Trill who is already dead?" They don't think any planet would have laws stupid enough to govern that situation.
    • Trill society could easily have one. However, the symbionts have only been open knowledge to all races within the last couple of years, so it would have been dealt by Trill alone, and other species would not have precedent on the books yet. Tandro wanted Dax to be tried by Klaestrons, presumably so that Dax would be executed and he would have 'avenged' his father's death.
      • So when they got the Trill expert witness, why didn't they just ask him what their policy was for the crimes of past hosts? They never did.
    • No human government refrains from punishing simply because a criminal had a spouse and children. They have to suffer and in a sense they are punished collectively even though that is not the intent of the law. Trill probably made the same reasoning about symbionts.
      • Although there is a big difference between innocently suffering because a loved one is in prison versus suffering because you are in prison. The fact remains that, assuming Curzon was guilty, Jadzia certainly wasn't; neither would she have known about Curzon's crimes prior to joining, and one could not imprison Dax without imprisoning (or killing) Jadzia.
    • Since the Trill system seems to go out of its way to erase any mention of a former host committing a crime and pretends that its system is perfect it's entirely possible that there isn't a single publicly known crime committed by a symbiont until Jadzia was put on trial (and acquitted). They may have decided in their arrogance that since no host would ever commit a crime there was no point in working out the legal ramifications.
      • Then where was the "why the hell are we talking about this? A joined host couldn't have committed the crime" speech from the Trill expert witness?
      • Out-of-universe probably because that point about Trill mentality wasn't established in season 1. In-universe because a government willing to kidnap a Starfleet officer and only after they were caught try to invoke an extradition treaty probably isn't going to listen to a Trill arguing that no host would ever commit a crime and the Bajoran arbitrator would be justifiably skeptical as well. Frankly that's not the strangest of the episode's problems since no one points out the weakness of the 'we confirmed every other suspect's location' evidence and Sisko argues only about the nature of Trill hosts without trying to look into the prosecution's claims.

     more about Dax's extradition 
Okay, so there are four possibilities:
  • The Trill are not a member of the Federation, and Dax is not a citizen (which could be possible, seeing as how Starfleet is a scientific organization first, and a military second).
    • In that case, the Klaestron would have been unable to extradite her.
    • Re: "... which could be possible, seeing as how Starfleet is a scientific organization first, and a military second". The Federation canonically does allow non-citizens to serve, although per Nog, getting into Starfleet Academy requires the endorsement of a serving command-level officer. This is also true in real life, at least in the United States: you're allowed to enlist if you have a green card, and in fact it's often treated as a step towards citizenship.
  • The Trill are a member of the Federation, but Dax is not a citizen.
    • She wouldn't be a citizen, so they couldn't extradite her AND the Federation would have to have established whether a conjoined Trill is a single person or multiple people.
  • The Trill are not a member of the Federation, but Dax is a citizen.
    • In that case, she should be registered as either a single person or as two people. If she is registered as a single person, she would obviously count as a single person under federation law and not be extradited.
  • The Trill are a member of the federation and Dax is a citizen.
    • All of the above.
  • That means that in every case, either Dax couldn't be extradited, or there would have to a law already established.
    • It wasn't until TNG's "The Host" that Trill Symbionts became widely known. Before then, they were very private about such matters. That episode took place in 2367. "Dax" takes place in 2369. To put this in perspective, Data was in Starfleet for over 20 years before his right to choose became law.

     Trills "do not seek relationships" 
  • OK, so was Jadzia's line to Julian about how Trills don't look for romance the same way other species do, a load of malarkey or what? She's shown by her own actions in "Rejoined", "Looking for par'Mach in All the Wrong Places", and "Meridian" that that's certainly not true. Within a couple days of meeting the guy, they promise to count each other's spots. Anyway, was Jadzia just saying that to get Julian off her back, or what?
    • For most of those episodes: Early Installment Weirdness, but for a more Watsonian explanation? IIRC, Jadzia is giving that explanation to Julian, who has been constantly hitting on her. It could also still be something that's a general joined Trill principle, but one that you don't tend to follow if Curzon Dax is one of your past hosts—once she began integrating him along with her other past hosts, she decided to go with his more maverick attitude towards life and cared more about enjoying herself and giving Dax a lively experience than following all the ideals for a "good" joined Trill. As for Meridian, it is just a terrible, terrible episode and it's best to ignore its existence. Even the creators hated it.
      • She isn't interested in Bashir so she just says some random crap to get him to leave her alone. It's her equivalent of "I'm not looking for a relationship", "I don't want to ruin our friendship", "I'm just too busy right now", etc.
      • This is it exactly. Bashir is acting like a teenager with a crush, and Jadzia is just not interested in him. She was just trying to be polite. Women do this exact same thing ALL THE TIME in real life, it shouldn't really be a surprise to anyone.

     The Next Generation Trills 
  • OK, so the real world explanation is for why the Trills changed from a Stargate SG-1 Goa'uld style race into a far more benign one is obvious. But how do we explain this in-universe? Are there in fact two different kinds of Trill? Are there two different kinds of symbiont? Are there conveniently two different races with symbionts that just so happen to be called Trill? Was the Trill seen in the Next Generation some kind of mutation or renegade? There are numerous fascinating things that could come of this, and many potential stories that we missed out on and yet very few answers.
    • The expanded universe does established in one of the novels that there are two races of Trills, in a similar way how we have different races that may look very different from each other. As for why the TNG Trill's symbiont seem to be unknown for the crew and/or unwilling/unable to use a transporter, IDK if that was ever explained.
      • There's no canonical explanation, but there's a reasonable inference - at the time of "The Host," the symbionts were a secret, kept from non-Trill. Using the transporter, the symbiont could be picked up as a biological contaminant and 'filtered out' by the transporter's biofilters, which at best (as we saw) blows the lid on the secret, and at worst, could result in the death of the symbiont, and, by extension, the host as well, given that their bodies are dependent on each other after a few days of the initial joining.
      • It's also possible that the risk is realistically negligible, but that particular host and/or symbiont was just paranoid. Not like he wouldn't be in good company (coughcough McCoy).
    • Even if you ignore everything else, the fact that DS9 Trill have a longstanding relationship with the Federation (we know that Emony Dax was on Earth in the 23rd century, even, and Curzon was a Federation ambassador in the 2290s at the absolute latest) simply does not jibe with "The Host."

     Trill Life Expectancy 
  • Has anyone thought for a second what the life expectancy is for a being that is 300-400 years old and has had nine hosts? Because it isn't very high.
    • As noted up on the top of Fridge Horror, things get a bit skewed when it comes to calculating Trill symbiote lifespans within hosts by the fact that hosts tend to be implanted in their 20s and not at birth.
    • Dax specifically can be said to be skewed, as two hosts (Torias and Jadzia) died unexpectedly, one in a shuttle crash, the other murdered, and Joran having proven unstable and forcibly removed. One of the reasons for things like the taboo of reassociation is that symbionts are going to experience a wide variety of activities while joined, some of them potentially hazardous - a risk of living is an abrupt ending. Five of the eight hosts that preceded Ezri lived full lives and died of old age (so far as we're told in canon, anyway), while two were unexpectedly cut short and a third was a rejected joining, akin to a body rejecting a transplated organ. Considering that Torias and Jadzia willingly engaged in lifestyles where a premature death was a possibility, this isn't a horrible ratio.
    • Doing the math, Jadzia dies approximately 90 years after Torias was joined (he was joined in 2284 or 2285, she dies in 2374), and Dax is about 356 at the time of Jadzia's death, so about 266 at the time of joining to Torias. We don't know how old symbionts are when they're joined for the first time, but even if Dax was 20 at first joining, that's an average lifespan of 61.5 years post-joining for the first four hosts (and more if Dax is younger, going up to 66.5 if Dax was joined within a year of birth), and then there's Curzon's 81-year post-joining lifespan. It's not really that dismal, it's just skewed by three very short lifespans (Torias, Joran, and Jadzia).