ProgressBy Michelle Erica Green
Posted at January 12, 2004 - 4:03 PM GMT
See Also: 'Progress' Episode Guide
Kira is ordered to evacuate an old man from his home to make way for Bajoran progress. When he refuses to be displaced, she must question the wisdom of the new developments taking place on her home planet. Ultimately she destroys his ties to the land he considers home, but it breaks her heart to have to carry out those orders, even if forcing him to move is the only way to save his life.
Another very moving Kira episode, demonstrating her conflicted loyalties not only about her people's role vis a vis Starfleet, but about their own definitions of progress. This was a fairly sophisticated (for Trek) look at the way a person from an agrarian country who has nonetheless lived in a technologically powerful nation must feel at the discovery that the price for equal technology is a centuries-old way of life. Kira can't pretend nostalgia for something she never really had, but she can share the sense that she would like to have had it before it disappeared.
Again, Nana Visitor's performance was breathtaking, and I find myself wondering whether we're seeing so much emphasis on Kira's character just because the actress has such range. It would be interesting to see a non-Bajoran faced with the same situation as Kira; her loyalties are torn because she feels she comes from the same soil, but I could see Sisko thinking back on centuries of Western "progress" in America and having the same reluctance to force an old man from his home. I wonder why they keep testing her directly like this; I wonder when she will reach a breaking point.
Michelle Erica Green reviews 'Enterprise' episodes for the Trek Nation, for which she is also a news writer. An archive of her work can be found at The Little Review.