The third episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, “Trials of the Red Planet” features an ensemble cast including J.J. Alexander, DS9 guest star Marina Sato, and a first attempt at a deleted scene from the previous episode featuring Counselor Troi. I enjoyed “Trials of the Red Planet,” (starring John Bon Jovi) but found the story to be too far-fetched for my tastes. However, I am not complaining, because this is one of the better episodes of Deep Space Nine.
The story centers on a battle between the Cardassians and the New Maaga, who are followers of the Klingon Empire. In order to destroy the Maaga, the Cardassians send their warrior ambassadors, the Maagas, to the planet of Xeros. The Xorns, an ancient race of beings, are aware of the impending battle and prepare several suicide missions into deep space to attack the Cardassians. The Xorns, along with the Cardassians, have an operative on the planet, who is tasked to find and destroy the USS Enterprise, which is carrying the mighty Maagas.
While on this mission, a Klingon warship appears out of nowhere and beams down from the sky. Using his strange pneumatic device, the Klingon warrior destroys the air lock, disabling the Enterprise. The Cardassians beam down as well and take over the planet. The horns and the Cardassians then lock each other out of the area and the only way that anyone can get into the temple is to use the transporter beam. The BCA forces the crew members of the Enterprise to beam down as well and allow them to beam down to the planet. When they return, the crew members of the Enterprise find that the Maagas are already there.
On another planet, the USS Enterprise is assigned to guard the planet Pestia. The Pestia planets are very dangerous and are always attacked by some form of Klingon or Cardassian ship. One such planet is called Epsilids and it is a giant ball of metal which constantly threatens to consume all of the planets in the system. Trip is a part of a team that is sent to Pestia to investigate and find out what the problem is and why it is continually attacking the Enterprise.
Meanwhile, back on the other ship in the region, a battle has broken out and many people on the other ship are killed. One of the crew members of the Enterprise, Trip, saves the deflectors of the warship and this allows it to battle the Maagas. As they battle it out in space, the Maagas’ crew chief mate tries to activate the main disruptor charge and destroy the Enterprise.
At this point, the ship’s deflectors are completely destroyed and Trip, along with another crew member, has to use his mind to put the ship into the deflector shield. This allows the Enterprise to escape from the planet and escape to the planetoids. In the meantime, the Klingon warship, the Bat’death, has been assigned to protect the Pestia from any Federation ships trying to make it to the target area. When the Enterprise finally makes it into the system, the Batleth has to engage the Enterprise by launching a nuke at one of the Klingon battle groups which has taken up station there. The Enterprise manages to get away and make it to the safety of the Enterprise crew quarters where they learn that the reason the planet exploded was because a Klingon scout ship tried to attack them while they were disguised as the Enterprise.