Here is an example of a story’s warp core humming along at maximum speeds. The best of TOS, of course, was taking social issues of the day and couching it with lasers and black holes. What Rejoined did (in 1995) was take the issue of same-sex relationships and present it in a context completely organic to the fictional universe. As the produces said at the time – this isn’t a story about lesbians, it is a story about Trills.
I’ve always felt that the coolness of the character of Dax and Trills in general was undercut by the so-so acting of Terry Farrell – but she really steps up to the plate here. You really do feel for her as she vacillates between going with her heart of upsetting the codes and ethics of her Trill culture.
Wisely, the script opens with some uncharacteristic back story (told to Quark, to great comedic effect) so this episode does live on an island. If you think DS9 is a big joke, check this one out.