"The Visitor", from DS9's fourth season, remains a fan and critical favorite. Like the best of Trek, this particular installment is more dependent on character development than special effects or other technical wizardry.
The acting by all is first-rate. Tony Todd (of "Candyman" fame and an earlier role as Worf's brother) turns in a fine performance as the elder Jake Sisko, enduring a lifelong quest to rescue his father from subspace limbo. Cast member Cirroc Lofton gets one of his few chances to shine as the young Jake. Guest star Rachel Robinson is quite good as a young woman that visits Jake in the winter of his years. Last but not least, star Avery Brooks brings his usual dynamic strength to the role of Benjamin Sisko as he pops in and out at stages of his son's life.
The respective scenes featuring exchanges between Brooks, Todd, and Lofton are endearing and memorable.
Besides being well written and acted, the episode features one of the best scores of any Trek show. It is no wonder that composer Dennis McCarthy's music is featured on a "Best of Trek" compilation album. The music is a combination of subtlety, poetry, and foreboding as it represents the strong bond between father and son.
"The Visitor" is an example of true quality television and deserves a place in the TV Hall of Fame.