Kor's Private Little War
"Once More Unto the Breach" Plot Summary:
Worf overhears Bashir and O'Brien speculating on the legend of Davey Crockett and insists that if they believe in the hero, they must believe he died a heroic death. Later, to his surprise, he is visited by Kor, whom he has not seen in years. Kor admits that because he has made so many enemies over the years, he has been unable to secure a commission in the Dominion war, and begs Worf for help so that he can die as a warrior. Worf promises to find him a command and approaches Martok, but the general throws Worf out. The next day he explains that because he was from a provincial Klingon house, the noble Kor had rejected Martok's application to study to become an officer, and it was only through luck and hard work that the young Klingon earned a battlefield commission.
Over Martok's objections, Worf appoints Kor as Third Officer on the Ch'Tang,one of Martok's ships which are on a mission to destroy a Cardassian base. Before he leaves, Kor has a drink with Ezri, who complains afterwards to Kira that she's still muddled at the way old friends of Dax treat her. The Trill says that part of her wishes she was off performing heroic deeds with the Klingon, which Quark, overhearing, assumes means that she is still in love with Worf. On the Ch'Tang, Kor is greeted as a hero by the crew and regales them with tales of his heroism in battle against the Federation, which greatly irks the general who spends a great deal of time complaining to his assistant Darok about the old Klingon.
Kor has trouble finding his way around the ship, and when Martok is injured during a battle, he takes command...only to forget where he is, ordering a dangerous second assault while demanding to talk to Kang about their attack on the Federation from a decades-old battle. Worf knocks him out to save the ship, but Kor is ridiculed by the crew. He hides away while Worf hatches a plan to distract a Jem'Hadar squadron...which unfortunately would require the sacrifice of Worf on one of the Klingon ships.
Darok, who is almost as old as Kor and considers him a hero, tells the aging hero of the plan. As Worf is about to leave, Kor tells Worf he looks forward to seeing him at Sto-Vo-Kor, then asks whether the younger man has any message for Jadzia. While Worf puzzles over the question, Kor injects him with a sedative and beams himself to the ship which will divert the Jem'Hadar from the Klingon fleet. Martok, who tells Worf privately that he took no pleasure in watching Kor ridiculed, realizes it's his old adversary who has saved them from the Jem' Hadar. He drinks to the warrior and the crew sings a Klingon battle song.
I have mixed feelings about the death of the last of the Classic Trek Klingons, because while I always liked Kor, I am hoping sincerely that this is the last episode about Klingon honor which I will ever have to sit through on Star Trek. This one was fairly enjoyable as Klingon episodes go, in part because of J.G. Hertzler's wonderful Martok - it's about time we got his backstory, and it makes sense that he has no great appreciation for big Klingon names considering that he's the one Klingon who didn't hold Worf's father's dishonor against him. Kor, on the other hand, greets Worf as the son of Mogh even though Worf is now officially of the House of Martok. I liked the muttering and annoyance while Kor bragged about his exploits, and I also liked the guilt and displeasure at Kor's ridicule...which was rather low-key, for a Klingon.
Ezri Dax continues to be a revelation. I feel like I should miss Jadzia more than I do, but I feel like we're getting the best of that character in Ezri with almost none of the baggage. She's still a little relentlessly perky, especially in her dealings with the amorous Quark, but I see her exactly the way she described herself to Kira: a little bit of Jadzia, a little bit of Curzon, and a lot of young girl who never expected to be a joined Trill. She has very nice chemistry with Kira, very different from Jadzia's mature tranquility, and I got a big kick of Kira's assessment of herself as a counselor ("What problem? Get out of my office!") I am also relieved that she's not interested in Worf. I can't take that pairing again.
Poor Worf had a rather thankless role in this episode which ostensibly centered on him; he was a foil for Martok and Kor, two different breeds of Klingon warrior. I was very surprised that he risked his relationship with Martok for Kor, who didn't seem to have been there for him when Martok was the only Klingon in the world willing to stand up for him. I realize Kor was Dax's friend, but I wouldn't think that would be enough to make him risk his main bond to his own people. His perpetual scowl gets a little tiring, too; he used to enjoy being a warrior, as Kor did and Martok clearly does. I hope we get to see that Worf again, without the Klingon speeches.
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