Soldiers of the Empire

By Michelle Erica Green
Posted at January 13, 2004 - 10:38 AM GMT

See Also: 'Soldiers of the Empire' Episode Guide

On a mission to help Martok in the Klingon struggle with the Cardassian-Dominion Alliance, Worf realizes that his friend is no longer fit to lead, and that assassination is the only means of displacing him. Goaded on by Dax, he challenges Martok, whom he permits to defeat him. In gratitude, Martok invites Worf to join his house.


I really enjoyed this episode, but I suspect that that's because I watched with my silly glasses on. So I loved Worf and Martuk. They make a great couple, much better than Worf and Dax ever could--ever since Martok read Worf's mind to save him from the Jem'Hadar earlier this season, I realized that there was a bond between them inexpressible in words. So I was terrifically moved when Martok asked Worf to marry him, I mean, join his family, at the end of this episode...

OK. Seriously? This was an episode for viewers who love Klingons, but viewers who get bored by Klingons (like myself) have trouble staying awake. "Soldiers of the Empire" harped on all the usual themes--honor, par'mach, knife battles, good days to die--amazing that an artificial culture can have generated so many cliches.

I suppose it might be interesting to watch a race bred to fight duel a race that thinks fighting is the only way to earn honor, but the violence seemed excessive and gratuitous. We didn't learn anything new about the Klingons or the Jem'Hadar as species, and we didn't learn much about the characters...other than that Dax doesn't trust Worf on a ship where other Klingons bring their girlfriends. I could handle Worf and Dax fighting about whose turn it was to do the laundry, but this "I can be a Klingon, too, Worfie" routine is already getting old. How could Jadzia go from Lenara to this? I guess it's Dax's influence, but from what we know of Curzon, he was a mediator for the Klingons; he wasn't compelled to act like one.

If I were Worf, I might have waited around for a better family; considering the state of the ship and crew Martok got saddled with, he's probably almost as out of favor as a son of Mogh. Dax came across pretty strong-willed, but when did the woman who blasted Quark for the immorality of selling weapons start to favor assassination and mutiny? She did have the one funny line in the episode, at least, about her bed: "Mine is empty by choice." I sort of wish she'd keep it that way.

Find more episode info in the Episode Guide.

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.