While classic series such as The Next Generation – and new ones, including Discovery – might be soaking up all of the limelight, recently, longtime fans have turned their attention towards the black sheep of the family. Having been in development for a couple of years, a newly released Star Trek: Deep Space Nine documentary has shed some light on one of the franchise’s more mysterious characters.
Playing in theaters for a special, one-night-only event, What We Left Behind: Looking Back at Star Trek: Deep Space Nine hit the big screen earlier this week, thanks to a partnership between Shout! Studios and Fathom Events. The doc, which was crowdfunded on Indiegogo a few years ago, focused on the dark and edgy series that aired throughout the 90s. Directed by Ira Steven Behr (showrunner of the original show) and David Zappone (who’s worked on a handful of Star Trek docs), the film gave fans an extensive behind-the-scenes look at the show’s production, while also laying to rest a few long-standing questions.
As reported by ComicBook.com, the movie provided some insight on the sexual identity of Garak (played by Andrew Robinson), the exiled Cardassian spy who found a new home on Deep Space Nine. Throughout the show’s run, Garak always showed an interest in the ship’s medical officer, Dr. Julian Bashir, though his motives – whether it be friendship, or something more – were never fully revealed. Thankfully, Robinson shed some light on that matter, providing a cut-and-dry answer:
“At first, he just wanted to have sex with him,” Robinson says. “That’s absolutely clear.”
This might come as a shock to some long-standing fans. While Star Trek has tackled racism and classism for decades, the franchise has typically steered away from LGBT issues, a misstep which Ira Steven Behr fully admits.
“I wish we could have done a little bit more with the Garak character,” Behr says. “I talk about it in the doc. I mean, he was clearly gay or queer or however you want to say it. I think I would have loved to have taken that and see where that went and how that affected his relationship with Bashir.”
While Garak isn’t the franchise’s first openly gay character – that honor goes to Lt. Commander Paul Stamets, from Star Trek: Discovery – it’s still nice to see Deep Space Nine‘s creative team finally lay this long-standing mystery to rest.