Okay I’m about to hit y’all with a truly SCALDING take, so if you’re not ready keep scrolling:
Jadzia Dax, despite being a beautiful and wonderful worm, is one of the most narratively boring characters on DS9. Some of this is because they start her as essentially entirely fulfilled person. She’s psychological, spiritually, and emotionally balanced- she’s confident in herself. She, even prior to the joining, was a remarkably talented woman- and then she trains for years to get even more self assured. That leaves very little by way of growth for the character to do- she has nowhere to go. That’s why so many of “her” episodes need someone else to create a conflict in her life- like her one episode long romances (notable exception being Rejoined), her random Klingon quests, and her relationship with Worf. The times she’s even slightly insecure, the episodes nearly always end with “don’t worry!! You’re EXACTLY as amazing as you think you are and everyone’s in love with you <3″
(Exception to this being You are Cordially Invited where her regal attitude gets checked for the first time, and as far as I can remember is the only time that Jadzia is “wrong” about anything- another boring trait.)
For a kind of example of this, let’s take two episodes: Distant Voices and Facets. They are, more or less, the same episode just centering two different people.
Distant Voices is about Dr. Julian Bashir. We open with an immediate emotional and psychological conflict: Julian is afraid of getting older, he’s afraid of turning 30. Then, he goes into a coma and the different parts of his personality, represented by different members of the crew, try to save him- only for Julian, in his elderly state, to pull from a well of inner strength and save himself. He proves that he’s stronger than his insecurities and his strength and vitality is not contingent on being young. When he wakes up he’s no longer afraid of becoming old, because he realizes that what makes him strong has nothing to do with his youth.
Facets opens similarly. Jadzia has to do a ceremony to meet the other past versions of herself and she’s insecure. She’s worried about talking to Curzon Dax because he originally turned her down for the joining ceremony. We meet other facets of herself- but when it gets to Curzon and she asks him why he didn’t initially pick her hits her with several harsh reasons. Later, it comes out that the real reason he didn’t pick her is because he was in love with her! She was always perfect!!! Don’t worry Jadzia! Aside from being yet another instance of “everyone is madly in love with Jadzia” (someone in the writer’s room had a crush that was getting out of hand) it does literally nothing for her character. She was insecure that she was turned down because she wasn’t good enough, but it turns out she was simply too hot and perfect! Oh no! Like what did she learn about herself? Nothing! We did learn something about Curzon though, so? Win?
It would have been SO much more interesting if he was like “I didn’t pick you for X,Y,Z reasons... but then you came back, and you grew up and I realized you were great so I said yes. I like that you demonstrated that you can change” and then Jadzia can be like “wow... yeah, I was insecure that you didn’t pick me the first time, but that was actually a good thing because it made me push myself! And not being good enough the first time doesn’t mean I’m fundamentally flawed or a bad!” But they didn’t. And it will forever drive me insane.
(It’s why I actually think, in terms of narrative, Ezri has a way more interesting character because she has room to grow and make mistakes, but that’s a hot take for another day)