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Kira Nerys
KiraNerys001.jpg
Species Bajoran
Home planet Bajor
Affiliation Bajoran Militia
Posting Bajoran liaison officer
and executive officer,
Deep Space Nine
Rank Major (Bajoran Militia), briefly Commander (Starfleet), Colonel (Bajoran Militia)
Portrayed by Nana Visitor

Kira Nerys (pronounced /ˈkɪrə nɨˈriːs/), played by Nana Visitor, is a main character in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.

Contents

Backstory

Per Bajoran custom, her surname, Kira, precedes her given name, Nerys. She has two brothers (Kira Reon and Kira Pohl), and her parents' names are Kira Taban and Kira Meru.

The back story of the character states that Kira Nerys was born 2343, in Dakhur province, Bajor, during the 50-year Cardassian occupation of the planet. She was raised in a labor camp. Her family were members of the artisan caste. At the age of 12, Kira was recruited into the Shakaar resistance cell, part of an underground movement which carried out guerrilla attacks against Cardassian military and civilians with the ultimate goal of ending the occupation.

Story

In the early episodes of the show, after Cardassia withdrew from Bajor, now at age 26, the recently-ranked Major Kira became an influential figure in Bajor's reconstruction and the politics of the region, due to her assignment to Deep Space Nine, and her closeness to Captain Benjamin Sisko, whom the Bajorans believed to be an emissary from the Bajoran Prophets.

Initially, Kira was opposed to the Federation presence on DS9, feeling that the Bajoran people should have nothing to do with the Federation. Over time, her sentiments changed and she became one of the strongest supporters of Bajor joining the Federation.

Though she is a member of the Bajoran Militia, Kira is an invaluable help to Starfleet, especially during the Dominion War. When the Dominion captures Deep Space Nine at the start of the war, Kira remains aboard the station as liaison officer, as part of Bajor's non-aggression pact with the Dominion. Her role allows her to organize a resistance cell, including Rom, Quark, and Jake Sisko. They smuggle intelligence to Starfleet which indicates that the Dominion has begun to dismantle the minefield preventing Dominion reinforcements from the Gamma Quadrant. She also manages to sabotage weapons systems, which then allows Starfleet to retake Deep Space Nine.

Kira's experience in the Bajoran Resistance earned her a Starfleet field commission as Commander in order to assist the Cardassian Resistance against the Dominion. Kira, Odo and Garak are smuggled into Cardassia to teach Damar the tactics of organizing a resistance movement with a decentralized command. Their resistance cell manages to infiltrate a Dominion shipyard and steal the Breen weapon that Federation ships were defenseless against. Their actions allowed Starfleet engineers to develop shields that could counter the weapon. At the conclusion of the war, Kira takes command of DS9 after the disappearance of Sisko. She is promoted to Colonel sometime earlier in 2374.

With the help of Vic Fontaine, Kira forms a romantic relationship with Odo, who had pined after her for years. They remain involved even after Odo leaves to rejoin the Great Link - he returns to the station during the events depicted in the novel "Unity" disguised as a Trelian woman named Wex. Having revealed himself to Kira during a conflict at one of the temples on Bajor, the two pick up where they left off even when Odo has to leave again.

Depiction after the series

Following the conclusion of the TV series Star Trek Deep Space Nine, the character of Kira Nerys takes charge of the Deep Space Nine space station as its permanent commanding officer. With the conclusion of the first wave of Deep Space Nine novels in "Unity", Bajor finally joins the Federation, and Kira is given the Starfleet rank of Captain. In "Unity," Kira opens every Bajoran Orb simultaneously in a sacred place in order to defeat a monstrous enemy, announcing, "You want Bajor? Here it is." This also caused the return of Benjamin Sisko from the Celestial Temple to the corporeal world.

Alternate universe

The character of Kira Nerys also exists in the mirror universe. In the DS9 episode "Crossover," Kira encounters her mirror self, who is Intendant of Terok Nor, with Garak as her first officer. Kira convinces the mirror-Sisko to rebel against the Intendant-Kira and start the Terran Resistance. This group is later successful in taking command of Terok Nor and capturing the Intendant, but she manages to escape with the help of mirror-Nog. Eventually the escaped Intendant convinces the alternate universe's Bareil Antos to travel to the regular universe in order to obtain an Orb of the Prophets. The mirror Kira falls in love with her double from the other universe. At the time Nana Visitor dismissed the concept of bisexuality, saying that she intended to portray this as "total narcissism on her part. It had nothing to do with sexuality." However, later episodes continued to show her surrounded by a mixed-gender harem, and eventually depicted her being in a romantic relationship with her universe's version of Ezri Tigan.

Casting

In the early stages of planning Deep Space Nine, the show's creators wanted to bring the character of Ensign Ro Laren (from Star Trek: The Next Generation.) Michelle Forbes turned down the offer, so a new Bajoran character was created.[1] Nana Visitor had just given birth to a baby boy barely a couple of months before she was called to audition for the role of Kira Nerys, and her becoming a mother actually shaped her decision process for accepting or turning down roles. With the character of Kira Nerys, Visitor felt "completely engaged on every level by the part."[2]

Scholarly reception

The Journal of the American Academy of Psychoanalysis finds the character of Kira "emotionally difficult" (D. V. Forest, 2005 2005, vol. 33, no 1 (11 ref.), pp. 71-82 [12 page(s) (article)]). In Star Trek and Sacred Ground: Explorations of Star Trek, Religion, and American Culture (ed. Jennifer Porter, 1999), it is noted that Kira was not shown worshipping privately until the 1997 episode Ties of Blood and Water.

See also

References

  1. ^ IMDb, Michelle Forbes (I) profile "After appearing in "Star Trek: The Next Generation" (1987) as Ro Laren, she was approached to play the same character in a starring role on "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" (1993). When she turned down the part, because she didn't want to commit to a regular TV role at that point in her career, a new Bajoran character, Kira Nerys, was created and Nana Visitor was cast in that part." Accessed 31 August 2007
  2. ^ Marc Shapiro, "Mother with a Mission" Star Trek Monthly September 1995. Duplicated at http://nanavision.com/?p=17, accessed 31 August 2007.

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