One of my favorite anti-heroes in TV. He was really my first big encounter with this archtype a guy who is neither really good nor evil, but so charming a fascinating that you can't help but love him and understand his motivations even if you don't agree with them. Also the 90's were the height of my James Bond fandom, so I always enjoy a good spy story.
The character I loved from the pilot and the one I latched onto as my favorite early on, though Garak surpassed her around season 3, she remained my fave of the regular cast. I tend to have a thing for strong female characters who are former revolutionaries turned politicians which is why Kira reminds me of Princess Leia. I loved how Kira always spoke her mind though. I also loved how Kira was so strong in her religious faith, something I could relate to a lot. She really is one of the most inspirational fictional characters of the 90s for me.
Another character I related to a lot. Jadzia, while I liked her, never clicked for me in terms of being able to identify with her much. She was just too alien for me, but somehow when Ezri came along, I just instantly clicked with her - her introvertedness, her petiteness, her being an underdog late to the party, etc. I liked her for being a counselor like Troi. I enjoyed seeing someone who was never meant to be joined go through the process, a shrink who has so many of her own issues. I just really liked that contrast. Ezri's search for her own identity apart from walking in the footsteps of "the greats" like Jadzia and Curzon is a theme I like a lot.
Just like Data or Spock Odo is our "outsider" character for DS9, even among a cast that has more "outsiders" than any other Trek, Odo was still unique and things became even more interesting once we found out who his people really were. I also shipped him and Kira back in the day, one of my favorite Trek couples. Plus Odo/Quark just might be one of the best relationships in all of Trek.
One of the best villains in Trek. I seem to have a fascination with Cardassians. Maybe it's just their scene-stealing nature. But there was no time I didn't ever enjoy Dukat. Rarely have I enjoyed loving to hate a character more.
This one kinda surprises me, but I love how much growth this character goes through in the course of the series. As soon as Nog makes the decision to enter Starfleet he becomes so unique. I love the path he chooses to become the first of his species in Starfleet and all the drama that arises from it. I love how a character so young is one of the ones who goes through some of the worst trauma in the Dominion War. And I love his friendship with Jake.
Runner-up: Worf. I love his inclusion on DS9 and seeing his continuing story, but as I said I think TNG uses his "outsiderness" to better effect and apart from Dax I prefer his relationships with the TNG crew better.
This was really hard since DS9 is a much more story arc-ed show, but I have tried my best.
1. Duet - made me cry, Kira at her best, considered among Trek's best as well
2. Improbable Cause/The Die is Cast - my favorite Garak story of the show and a major "move the plot forward" pair of episodes for the Dominion arc
3. In Purgatory's Shadow/By Inferno's Light - a sequel to the two-parter above in a lot of ways, more great Garak stuff, another major turning point in the Dominion storyline, plus this time we have Worf and Martok along
4. What You Leave Behind Pt. 1 & 2 - I wish I could just include the entire 10 part story arc that wraps up the show, but I'll settle for the epic conclusion, which like TNG has one of the best ending to a show I've ever seen
5. Way of the Warrior Pt. 1 & 2 - the intro of Worf and the Klingons to DS9 is so epic and action packed, every character gets a chance to shine, some of the best scenes/moments from the whole show come from this episode including the root beer conversation
6. Necessary Evil - great Kira/Odo stuff, love seeing the station when it was Terok Nor, plus the whole murder mystery film noir atmosphere of the episode
7. In the Pale Moonlight - Garak!, considered among Trek's best, huge Dominion turning point, great Sisko stuff, among the darkest Trek ever got
8. Image in the Sand/Shadows and Symbols - Ezri's intro, the truth about Sisko's connection to the Prophets, Kira at some of her badass best
9. You are Cordially Invited - one of the funnest episodes of the show, the wedding of Worf and Dax!
10. Broken Link - a "bridge" episode of sorts for Garak involving the plot of my #2 and #3 choices, a huge shift in status quo for Odo, plus one of my favorite season cliffhangers
I really would have liked to do more but I had a hard enough time narrowing it down to these ten. Season 7 of DS9 might be one of the best single seasons of any TV show I have watched with about 24 out of 26 episodes rating a 10 out of 10 for me. Voyager should be easier as it's more stand alone.