“The Search Parts 1 & 2″
Review Originally printed in ORACLE
Newsletter July 2010
Review written by Mary Shaver
The Odo/Kira Link (continued):
Watching “The Search” is such a joy for viewers who appreciated a Kira whose character was fully fleshed out. In this episode, she is the rich, textured character we love – passionate, intuitive, smart, supportive and capable. This is Kira before the writers took it into their heads to give us a dumbed-down version of Kira. This Kira was anything but the obtuse, oblivious Kira of Season 4. It’s even possible this Kira might have seen the little signs and mannerisms that Odo let slip about his feelings for her. She might very well have recognized Odo’s “love symptoms.” “The Search” shows Kira in all her glory as a woman who knows and understands her best friend, is instantly aware of his various moods, and intuitive to his needs. This Kira gives generously of herself with caring, compassion, and affection.
Series viewers are accustomed to seeing Odo in his familiar position: the wall at Kira’s back. Guarding and protecting her. “The Search” provides us with the opportunity to see their position reversed. From the moment they beam onto Odo’s home word, Kira assumes the role of the protector as she helps Odo through The seminal moment of his life. When they first encounter his people, Odo is understandably a little nervous and so falls back on what he knows best – how to conduct an investigation. He fires off question after question to the Female Shapeshifter in a manner that might be seen as an interrogation. Kira gently reminds him that this, in fact, is not a police investigation, then intercedes on his behalf, telling the Female Shapeshifter. “He really is happy to be here”.
When Odo falls into a trance in the aftermath of his first encounter with the Link, Kira, concerned for her friend, demands to know what’s been done to him and then helps him find his way back from his dazed state. Left alone in the Changeling garden for the first time, Kira senses Odo’s anxiety and tries to distract him by commenting on the beauty of the place. She is also intuitively aware that it is she, and not Odo, who is the outsider here. She can easily sense that she is the unwelcome guest.
A part of the conversation that follows also never made it onto the screen but serves to illustrate the genesis of what has been referred to as the “Battle for Odo’s soul”.
Again, from the running script:
If our history has taught us anything it’s to avoid contact with Solids whenever possible.
Our name for the mono-forms like yourself, who’ll never know the joys of the great link.
DELETED PORTION Of SCENE
Well, Odo hasn’t been able to “avoid contact” with us and he hasn’t done too badly.
I doubt Starfleet Command would agree with you, Major.
The Female Shape-Shifter is aware she’s discovered a source of tension between Odo and Kira.
FEMALE SHAPE-SHIFTER (to Odo):
Have you enjoyed living among the Solids?
At times… though I never really felt at home with them.
FEMALE SHAPE-SHIFTER (smiling):
That’s because your home is with us.
Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about you. We have no place for you here.
I don’t intend to be staying long.
It’s Kira that Odo goes to in his frustration and confusion over not understanding how to “become a thing”. Unable to help him, Kira does the instinctive thing. She goes to those who can help her friend. This is another wonderful scene that wound up on the cutting room floor. This picks up immediately after Odo disappears into the shuttlecraft to regenerate.
From the running script:
Kira stands before the lake of Shape-Shifters.
Hello? I need to talk to one of you…
Can anyone hear me?
We then hear a MORPH SOUND EFFECTS cue then- A NEW ANGEL to reveal the male Shape-Shifter standing behind her.
We hear you Major. But please be brief. We find the humanoid shape to be… awkward.
I won’t keep you long. It’s about Odo. He needs your help.
How would you have us help him?
By talking to him… telling him what he needs to know.
In time all his questions will be answered.
And when will that be?
When he’s ready to hear them.
And you’ll be the ones to decide that?
Who better? After all, he’s one of us. We know him.
I “know him” too.
I’m his friend.
The Male Shape-Shifter steps close to Kira and when he speaks it is with a cold animosity.
You’re a solid. All you have ever done is teach him how to be like you.
That’s not true.
Isn’t it? If you really cared about your friend you’d stop interfering and let us do what’s best for him.
It’s time you went home, Major. Odo no longer requires your presence here.
This exchange is marked once again by ambiguity regarding Odo. It also reveals that the Changelings consider Kira to be a significant threat to them. They must break the Link between Odo and Kira if they hope to bring Odo into their Link. The words of the Changelings are clearly intended to drive a wedge between them, so that Kira will leave.