Ron D. Moore Q & A from AOL’s Message Boards
Q: I have some questions about the new Dax. Is she in Star Fleet? Who is going to play her? Which episode will we first see her in?
A: She will be in Starfleet and you’ll see her in the opening episode, but that’s all I’ll say for now.
Q: Okay, so the Sovereign is TNG, and Intrepid is VOY. Defiant should be DS9, but then why did Voyager use TWO Defiant class ships in the episode “Message in a Bottle.” Did they get permission to do this?
A: We knew they were planning to do it and we didn’t have a problem with it. We haven’t been itching to show Intrepids or Sovereigns on DS9, so their general prohibition doesn’t bother us very much. This isn’t a very big issue around the offices, so when VOY said they wanted to use some Defiants, we thought it was odd but everyone just shrugged and moved on.
Q: Seems like there’s enough characters on the show, without adding a brand new cast member. If you wanted to have a regualr to replace Jadzia, it (IMHO) should have been Garak.
A: There are a couple of reasons for adding a new Dax (And none of this should be taken as a knock against Garak or Andy Robinson, both of whom we like very much.). Without Dax we’d be down to only one regular female character (Kira) and that seemed wrong. We also wanted to keep the Dax character itself in the mix. The “Old Man” has become an integral part of the series and we didn’t want to let go of that element in our show. This also goes to the main reason why we killed Jadzia in the first place: we did not like the dramatic and structural changes that we would’ve been forced to make in the show if her character had simply been transferred or sent off on some kind of mysterioso assignment. A couple of days ago, I said that we didn’t transfer her off the station because that would’ve entailed transferring Worf as well and we didn’t want to do that. That’s true, but clearly it’s not the entire reason and I probably should’ve expanded on that thought. I do feel that it’s difficult to believe that Worf would’ve just waved good-bye to his wife and kept his posting on DS9, especially after “Change of Heart” — but okay, we might’ve found a way around that and created some scenario that would make it work. The point is not that it was impossible, but that we didn’t like it. We felt it would’ve been an awkward construct and that it would leave our regular characters and the audience with no sense of closure on the character. Terry was going to be gone. She wasn’t going to be popping up now and then, doing cameos on the viewscreen or dropping in to say hello, but our characters would have to act like that was always a possibility. Having her “out there” somewhere week after week, her fate unknown, while a war rages all over the Alpha Quadrant was not something that we were interested in doing. Now, you can say that it could’ve worked, that these problems don’t seem very big to you, but we’re the ones who have to actually do the work. We’re the ones who have to write the scenes and adjust all the character relationships in ways we didn’t believe in and didn’t like. All things considered, we’d much rather bring in a new host and play the fun of our people having to adjust to her along with the audience. Having a new Dax gave us something we wanted to play as opposed to something that we saw as an unnecessary and unneeded burden on our storytelling. And I’ll say it again — it wasn’t our idea to do this in the first place. We didn’t want Terry to leave the show and we said that to Terry and to the studio on more than one occasion. But $%^# happens and we had to deal with it. Jadzia is dead. We’re moving on.
Q: So tell us Ronald, when can Trek fans expect the Borg again?
A: You should ask Voyager.
Q: You said “We discussed various and myriad ways of killing off the character, but we decided against ‘The Heroic Sacrifice’ because it’s just been done to death (no pun intended). Spock went out that way (for a time anyway) in Trek II and we’ve seen many, many people check out in Trek while giving their all for the cause (the mission, their friends, their planet, their universe, etc.) and we felt that it would ring false in this episode.” WHEN did we see heroic sacrifice, other than in the death of Spock?… So, when exactly did anybody die heroicly? Could you name me one significant character who did “check out in Trek while giving their all for the cause”, other than Spock, who was brought back, and Tasha in Yesterday’s Enterprise, which was later invalidated
A: I see that today is not a good day for Dax to die… When I said that “many, many” people in Trek have died via The Heroic Sacrifice, I wasn’t limiting that to simply the main characters. We’ve seen everyone from Matt Decker to Michael Eddington go out in a blaze of glory while selflessly giving up themselves for the sake of our heroes. It’s been done. Many times. Having Dax go out with by THS caused our eyes to roll back into our skulls. It’s a dramatic device that’s over-used enough as it is; we didn’t want to go to that well yet again to send off Jadzia.
Q: Will season 7 pick up a few months later like season 6 did?
Q: To what degree do you feel Sisko had in helping design the Defiant? (i.e. did he sit down with the engineers and say “I want it to do this…” or rather did he design out the whole ship and then give the plans to the shipyard?)
A: I think Sisko had a staff of engineers that he worked with in designing the Defiant.
Q: It was… suggested that the Dominion is working with the Syndicate. Will there be some sort of follow-up?
Q: What Episode of the 6th Season did you enjoy the most in the writing, filming, and the fan response?
A: “In the Pale Moonlight” — all the pieces came together on stage, the final cut was great and the response was quite gratifying.
Q: Do we have any hope of seeing Michelle Forbes/Ro Laren make an appearance on DS9 before *sob* it’s too late?
A: I strongly doubt we’ll be seeing Ro again.
Q: In the episode “His Way” did Jadzia Dax play a part in the creation of the Vic Fontaine holo-suite program, and in his bringing Kira and Odo together?
Q: Once again, I ask: will you be addressing the societal role of the Klingon females, as you promised in May ’97? You proposed a position “separate” from the males’, but “equal” in honor, status, and respect. So far, we have not seen this. The “Mistress of the House” is neither “separate from” nor “equal to” her mate, but is in fact a chattel, and the Klingon equivalent to a Penthouse Pet…. the disempowerment of the Klingon women is only a part of the creeping, creepy sexism that still has yet to be addressed!…The recent episodes featuring Vic Fontaine and “transsexual” Quark and Kira’s drippy love-smitten behavior attest to that (pun intended).
A: We’ve discussed this before, but I’ll say it again: Klingon woman are not “chattel.” This was never established nor even implied in the series. The only prohibitions on women in Klingon society are: membership on the Council and leadership of a Great House. That’s it. And the two are interrelated in that membership of the Council is reserved for the leaders of Great Houses. I’ve already discussed at length how and why this came to be, so I won’t go into that again. However, I dispute your assertion that Sirella was some sort of “Penthouse Pet”. She was treated with respect by her husband and there was no implication anywhere in “You are Cordially Invited…” that she was anything other than Martok’s equal. Klingon woman run the internal workings of a Great House with an iron hand and they brook no interference from their spouses or anyone else. The men run the political affairs of the Empire, while women run the societal and familial affairs, and the two roles are indeed seen as separate and equal by the Klingons, if not by you. I also carefully crafted the marriage ceremony itself to emphasize the importance of women in Kingon society: the ceremony is conducted by a woman, and the story of the first two Klingon hearts describes them as each bringing different components to a union, with neither one having dominion over the other. And although I agree that “Profit and Lace” was not our proudest moment this season, I would also like to point out that buried within this mess was a fairly large cultural change in the Trek universe — Ferengi women are no longer forbidden to wear clothes or make profit. Since this was a fundamental part of their society established when they were first introduced in TNG, I think we should at least get credit for erasing this patently offensive concept from our series. And as for Vic…. he’s a holographic character from the early 1960s and he uses the language of the time. Lighten up.