For species with names starting from A to M, go here.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager
Not much is known about the Nacene. They are explorers in their own right, hailing from another galaxy. One particular alien, dubbed "The Caretaker" by his Ocampa followers, mistakenly destroyed their planet while crossing over from its own dimension. As penance, the Caretaker devoted the remainder of its life to preventing the extinction of their race. Shortly after abducting Voyager, and recognizing that its death was imminent, the Caretaker warned Captain Janeway that the Kazon must not be allowed to use his array, forcing her to destroy it.
- The Atoner: The Nacene had no idea that their technology would be so destructive to the Ocampan atmosphere. They could never repay the debt, and so two of the Caretakers stayed behind to feed them energy and water.
- Author's Saving Throw: Suspiria was initially conceived of as a "get out clause", designed to change the format of VOY if such a need arose. This was because the Paramount executives were leery of the lost-in-space premise that was central to the story, and wanted an ejection button prepared in case the show didn't perform well. As it turned out, the Caretakers appeared only twice, and Voyager found other methods to get back home.
- Blob Monster: The Caretaker is a great big translucent blob. His mate, Suspiria, is a tentacled pillar of goo.
- Did You Just Romance Cthulhu?: At the start of VOY, the Caretaker has reached the end of its 1,000-year lifespan and could no longer maintain the Ocampa habitat. It begins snatching random spacecraft from various ends of the Milky Way to find a suitable mate (as you do).
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: The Caretaker first appears to the Voyager crew as an elderly human, Banjo Man. His inner chamber is a holodeck which conceals itself as a ranch. Suspiria cloaked herself in the guise of a little girl in Victorian dress.
- His Name Is...: The Caretaker dies of old age before he can return Voyager to the Alpha Quadrant. Whether he ever intended to do so is a mystery.
- Hostile Terraforming: Accidental. The engines of the Nacene's exploratory vessel caused a contamination in the atmosphere of the planet, reducing it to a desert.
- Last of Their Kind: The Caretaker was left high and dry after his companion, Suspiria, parted with him over ideological differences.
- No Body Left Behind: The Nacene shrink down into a tiny piece of crystal when killed.
- Power Floats: The Caretaker is a Metroid. Didn't see that one coming in 1995...
- Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: Slightly skewed — the Ocampans do not recognize the Nacene as God, but more of a benign ruler or father. The Caretaker's inner sanctum is just a fancy holodeck.
- This Was His True Form: The Caretaker only reveals his real form when a Kazon warship crashes into the array, causing his holograms to fail. This exposes the 'farmhouse' as the interior of an alien ship.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: One of them is still out there somewhere
- Woman Scorned: The Caretaker did not realize that his philanthropy was rendering the Ocampa utterly dependent on his assistance. His mate, Suspiria, did realize this and left the planet, taking a small group of Ocampa with her. She later hunts down Voyager to avenge the Caretaker's death.
Debut: Star Trek: The Next Generation
A large, brutish race somewhat similar to Klingons. Unlike Klingons though, the Nausicaans don't seem to care about honor, and have a tendency to be thuggish body guards or pirates. Distinctive physical features include a series of tusk-like protrusions around their mouth area, as well as bony-forehead ridges. While a relatively minor race, they have appeared regularly throughout the franchise's run, even appearing retroactively in ''Enterprise'' for a few episodes.
- Alien Hair: Most Nausicaans tend to have long, occasionally braided hair rather closely resembling styles worn by Hair Metal bands.
- Always Chaotic Evil: Every Nausicaan seen is this.
- The Brute
- Combat Pragmatist: Nausicaans have no problem with cheating or fighting dirty.
- Dumb Muscle: Nausicaans aren't particularly bright, but their strength makes them ideal bodyguards, enforcers and strike-breakers.
- Evil Sounds Deep
- Gonk: Demonstrated quite clearly in the above image.
- Hair-Trigger Temper: It doesn't take much to make a Nausicaan mad.
- In the Back: As a young Captain Picard found out, the Nausicaans have no problems doing this during a fight.
- Macho Masochism: In one episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, a pair of Nausicaan bodyguards can be seen passing the time by throwing darts at each others' chests. It's also mentioned during the same scene that most Nausicaan games involve pain.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: Kind of. The Nausicaans love to fight, but their conduct tends to be less than honorable.
- Space Pirates: One of the most prevalent examples of such in the franchise, especially in Star Trek: Enterprise.
- The Bully: Their general nature.
- Trash Talk: Tends to come with the species' boorish nature.
- Wolverine Claws: Not quite actual full-length claws, but the Nausicaans on Star Trek: Enterprise have bony, spiked protrusions on their knuckles. Getting punched by one does not sound fun.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager
Ocampa, or Ocampans, are shrouded in mystery, but their own legends tell of a time when they were capable of great mental feats. Nowadays, they eke out a dull existence as the fragile, cloistered wards of an unseen overseer. Trek has depicted unlikely examples of evolution in its time, but the Ocampa take the cake: They live an average of nine years, their females develop a sticky mucus on their palms during mating, produce offspring out of an "egg-sac" on their back, and can deliver only one baby per lifetime. Take that, Darwin.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Kes experienced a rapid and uncontrollable blossoming of her mental abilities in adulthood. She left the ship and allowed this process to complete itself, apparently evolving into a being of pure energy.
- Tanis also claimed that Kes could join Suspiria in a subspace layer called Exosia, which he described as a realm of pure thought.
- Beneath the Earth: The Nacene, upon realizing their mistake, took upon themselves the responsibility of caring for the Ocampa. The Caretakers built a massive underground cavern with access to the only remaining natural water source on the planet and supplied it with energy via transmissions from an orbital "Array."
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Okay, they are taking the piss with Trekkies now.Joe Ford: When somebody pitched an idea of televising an alien going through accelerated puberty via stuffing her face and having her feet massaged there had to be somebody there laughing their head off and saying it was a crazy idea.
- Living Macguffins: It does seem a little odd, considering the Caretaker's immense capacity to send ships across the universe, that he couldn't find a habitable world to migrate the Ocampa to (a common occurrence throughout the Trek saga). But then we wouldn't have had a series if he'd done that.
- Mind over Matter: All Ocampa appear to be natural telepaths, able to communicate across great distances (putting the Vulcans to shame). Among the more colorful abilities are photographic memory, precognition, telekinesis, pyrokinesis, time travel, and the ability to alter matter on the subatomic level.
- Tanis, an Ocampa living on Suspiria's array, demonstrated to Kes that she could control living things, causing them to grow or die as she wished.
- Rapid Aging: Ocampa age very rapidly, resulting in an average life span of only nine years (less than that of a household pet). As an upside, they develop and learn extremely quickly.
- We Have Become Complacent: As a result of their lifestyle of ease under the Nacene, the Ocampa eventually stopped using their mental powers, causing them to atrophy.
- Writers Cannot Do Math: As pointed out by SF Debris, at peak reproductive rates the population would halve every generation since females can only produce a single offspring once. A species this short-lived really ought to produce litters. This means one of two things: That the evolution of the Ocampa race was interrupted when the Nacene took over, altering their genetic code (thus requiring the constant supervision of the Nacene), or that the Ocampa naturally mature into pure energy, rendering their corporeal lives somehow moot.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager
One of the last species to be encountered by Voyager on their return trip to the Alpha Quadrant. Though visibly based on Doctor Who's Sontarans, the Overlookers are their polar opposite in terms of machismo. They are scavengers who, due to their unwieldy bodies, rely on wiretaps and long-range espionage to survive.
- Fat Bastard: Though the Hierarchy is not particularly malicious, just opportunistic.
- High Collar of Doom: Hard to feel intimated by a potato in a gym sock.
- Meaningful Name: Their government, the Hierarchy, is one of the most regimented societies seen in the Star Trek universe outside of the Borg.
- Pragmatic Villainy: The Hierarchy weighs everything in terms of risk vs. reward.
- Stealth in Space: Seem to be one of the only races in the entire Delta Quadrant with cloaking technology. Even then, it just takes some sensor remodulation to spot them, so obviously theirs isn't as advanced as the Klingons' or Romulans'.
- Vast Bureaucracy: The social structure of the Hierarchy is regimented in such a way in that each crew member has a single work station and duty to perform, minimal social interaction, and limited access to the rest of the ship.
Debut: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
The rival deities of the Prophets. They were booted out of the Celestial Temples centuries ago and exiled to Bajor's Fire Caves. They're still plotting to get back somehow and if they do, Bad Things will happen.
- All Just a Dream: Tried to fool Sisko into thinking his life on Deep Space 9 was this.
- Always Chaotic Evil: Of course, being demons, they're pretty much this by default. Then again, they may simply be more like an evil faction than an evil race, as they are presumable the same species as the Prophets, just their equivalent of dangerous extremists.
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: The Prophets are blue colored, but these guys are orange.
- Crystal Dragon Jesus: Crystal Dragon Demons sums it up.
- Demonic Possession: A favored tactic of theirs when they want to take a direct hand in things. One of them possessed Keiko O'Brien during an archeological dig near the Fire Caves; this Pah-Wraith came close to zapping the wormhole with a concentrated chroniton beam, which would have supposedly killed off the Prophets for good.
- Diabolus ex Nihilo: The Pah-Wraiths are first brought up in Season Five of DS9, but only appear in about five episodes total.
- Evil Counterpart: To the Prophets. Unlike them, the Pah-Wraiths really dislike Planet Bajor and—should they escape—will gladly reduce it to a cinder on Day 1.
- Fire and Brimstone Hell: Their home in the Bajoran Fire Caves is this.
- Hell on Earth: Dukat stated that if the Pah-Wraiths got their way and re-entered the wormhole, the entire universe would go up "in flames", whatever that meant.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Of DS9 as a whole. They are the single most dangerous recurring enemy on the show and even the Dominion absolutely pale in comparison in terms of both threat level and influence, as they potentially threaten the entire universe and are behind numerous events on the station. The Prophets, who can casually destroy an entire Dominion fleet with little trouble, regard the Pah-Wraiths as the real enemy to be feared, and sure enough it's the Pah-Wraith who turn out to be the True Final Boss of the show through their new agent Dukat.
- Hell Invades Heaven: Tried this in Tears of the Prophets. It eventually failed and got them cast back out.
- I Have Many Names: "Kosst Amojan", a Bajoran saying which translates to, "to be banished".
- Made of Evil: The entirety of their characterization.
- Omnicidal Maniac: If Dukat is to be believed, their ultimate goal is to burn down the entire universe.
- Pragmatic Villainy: They are surprisingly manipulative and underhanded in their methods. Not a single shade of Stupid Evil, unlike the Dominion, who routinely kill off their own for minor infractions.
- Then there's the fact that the Pah Wraith in The Reckoning chose Jake Sisko as its host, specifically because it understood corporeal relationships and who Jake was related to.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: Seems to happen by default when they posses someone, although The Assignment confirms that they can suppress it when necessary.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Rather, sealed evil in some caves, as well as a small ornamental statue.
- Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: Like the Prophets, the Pah-Wraith are non-corporeal entities with a non-linear existence in time and space, and are powerful enough to be compared to literal gods and demons. While the Founder pose as evil deities, the Pah-Wraith are much closer to the genuine article.
- Tome of Eldritch Lore: The Book of the Kosst Amojan, which threatened to free the Wraiths from captivity once read—and locked them away again once it burned up. It's the Necronomicon of Star Trek. Seriously, just look at this thing.
- Villains Blend in Better: Unlike the Prophets, who clearly don't have the best grasp on corporeal matters, and come across as off-putting on their best days, the Pah-Wraiths are much more... well, "human", for want of a better word. The one possessing Keiko O'Brien does a horrifically good impression of her that at first Miles thinks it's just kidding when it explains what's going on, and no-one else suspects a thing is up.
Debut: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
The proverbial gold everyone in the wild west is fighting over. Prophets are the Deus ex Machina of the Dominion War, handing out cryptic assignments to Sisko and warning of looming trouble. They live in the Bajoran Wormhole, the shortcut between the Alpha and Gamma Quadrants, and are implied to be the power source keeping the wormhole stable. The Bajorans revere them as gods, and anyone who communicates with them is an "Emissary" or messenger.
- Alien Non-Interference Clause: The Prophets deem themselves above our trivial corporeal matters, but will swing into action if Bajor itself is in danger.
- Big Good: Though in more of a morally ambiguous manner than is usual for the trope.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Because they're so different from corporeal beings, they have little concept of what humans and Bajorans think is okay.
- Catchphrase: "...aggressive...adversarial..." Often said in response to Sisko or another corporeal being acting a bit too assertive towards them for their liking.
- Cryptic Conversation: Try having a crisis management session with somebody who doesn't know what day it is. It would drive you nuts.
- Crystal Dragon Jesus:
- Or rather, Crystal Dragon Angels. A Prophet possessed the body of an Earth woman, Sarah, in order to impregnate her with a half-human, half-Prophet son.
- The Pah Wraith stuff is a much more generic way of handling the show's religious themes than the first five or so seasons. The idea of the Prophets as existing beyond mortality and corporeality in a way that makes them terrifying and awe-inspiring. Turning them into the good guys in some eternal struggle changes them (and the show) into a Judeo-Christian archetype.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: They communicate by taking the appearance of one's friends, acquaintances, and even enemies in visions. For instance, the "inquisitive" Prophets appeared as Sisko's pre-teen son, Jake; the "empathic" ones look like Opaka and Kira; the "authoritative" guys are Odo and Weyoun; the "hostile" ones are Locutus (the only Borg whom Sisko has personal experience with) and Dukat.
- God and Satan Are Both Jerks: Doesn't help that the Prophets define "good" in terms of what's good for Bajor (i.e. themselves), and "bad" as anything which furthers the Pah-Wraith's goals—not necessarily the welfare of individual people or the Alpha Quadrant as a whole.
- To give an example, when Sisko is starting to get itchy feet regarding this Space Moses business, the Prophets send back through a wormhole a long-dead Bajoran poet who claimed to be the original (and thus, standing) Emissary. With the help of Kai Winn, he promptly re-institutes theocratic law on Bajor as it existed before the occupation, along with the caste system. Lesson duly noted, Sisko puts a stop to the pretender (by no means a bad man, just one whose ideas were 300 years out of date) and hauls him before the Prophets, who restore him to his own time. The Prophets also remind Sisko that he can't shirk his duties as the Emissary, or Winn will completely take over. Too bad it took at least one death for Sisko to get the memo. That man was Imutta, a cleric who suddenly found himself one of Bajor's untouchables.
- Gondor Calls for Aid: In "Sacrifice of Angels", Sisko flies the Defiant into the wormhole to intercept a Jem'Hadar fleet en route to the Alpha Quadrant. As he predicted, the Prophets intervene because they can't let the Emissary—Sisko himself—die just yet. He convinces them to destroy the fleet within the wormhole, apparently the only offensive measure the Prophets have (outside of possessing Kira's body in "The Reckoning", which didn't do much good). The Prophets warn that this is a one-time deal, however; from now on, Starfleet is on its own.
- Have You Seen My God?: A number of Bajorans turn to the Pah-Wraiths after the brutality of the Occupation and the Dominion War, feeling that their gods don't care. Then again, if the Prophets exist in the future as well as the present then they must have foreseen that the Bajorans would eventually drive out the Cardassians without revealing the wormhole's existence to feuding alien races.
- Hyperspace Is a Scary Place: The Bajoran wormhole is their domain, and they can alter reality within it at their whim. Thankfully, after first contact between them and Sisko, they decide to let ships travel through the wormhole without incident. Nonetheless, they prefer to be left alone: when Grand Nagus Zek tried to use them to see the future, they retaliated by brainwashing him and turning him into a paragon of philanthropy (practically the Ferengi's personal Anti-Christ). And that's to say nothing of when they made a Jem'Hedar fleet disappear without a trace...
- Kryptonite Factor: Chroniton particles. Not only can't the Prophets perceive linear time, they are allergic to it. This also makes it a potent weapon against the Pah-Wraiths.
- Living MacGuffin: Without the Prophets and Pah-Wraiths, there would be very little reason not to collapse the wormhole with photon torpedoes and prevent the Dominion from even invading. Sisko was willing to do just that in "The Search", but only if there were no other options left. The Klingons and Romulans were thinking along the same lines in "Visionary".
- Made of Phlebotinum: They exist as something but it's damned near incomprehensible to corporeal forms. Whatever it is prevents the wormhole from collapsing and shifting about the galaxy as others do.
- Mysterious Watcher: The Prophets decide if and when you can have an audience with them. They claim to always be watching.
- Non-Linear Character: They don't even understand what "linear" IS until Sisko explains it to them.
- Omniscient Morality License: The Prophets know what they need to know, what they will need to know, and they've always known it. Refusing to their bidding merely puzzles them, since you are fulfilling your role as set out by them by definition and can't do otherwise, because they've already seen it.
- It's how they treat the whole Sisko family. They possess Sarah and force her to have a child with Joseph Sisko, because they know that Ben will be their Emissary. Given that Sarah ran to Australia without a word as soon as she was freed, this was not consensual, and losing a wife he thought loved him didn't do any favors for Joseph either.
- Portal Door: The Celestial Temple rests in an abstract dimension connected by two entrances that allow it to serve as a wormhole.
- Starfish Aliens: The Prophets are extremely non-corporeal, possessing no physical body and existing in all points of time simultaneously.
- Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: Their Celestial Temple is the Bajoran "Heaven", albeit one with high-volume space traffic.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: Similar to the Q Continuum but not quite as all-powerful or omniscient. The Prophets don't even know the meaning of humor, let alone the human concepts of love, grief, or even the passage of time.
- Time Dissonance: Because they don't exist in the normal flow of time, when Sisko first encounters the Prophets, they are completely perplexed by the idea of linear time. The concept that a corporeal lifeform cannot travel back in time to change events that have transpired, nor perceive the future until it has come and gone, is completely alien to them.
- Time Master: They exist outside of linear time, can alter the timeline without the usual side-effects (as in "Ascession"), and gave the Bajorans an artifact that allowed time travel.
- Since they first learned about linear existence from Sisko, this implies that their impact on Bajoran culture and ensuring Sisko was born, may have been a direct result of this "future" meeting.
- Vagueness Is Coming: They never get the hint that being cryptic is keeping people from fully carrying out their orders. The Pah Wraiths are much better at forming coherent sentences, logically because they exist in a physical location in the known universe (the Fire Caves) and are more attuned to linear time than the Prophets.
- Verbal Tic: They refer to corporeal beings by their names prefaced with "The" ("The Sisko", for example). After Sisko uses baseball as a metaphor for linear time, they also begin to refer to the linear flow of time, as well as Sisko's life, as "the game".
Debut: Star Trek: The Next Generation
The Q Continuum refers not to a race, but an extra-dimensional plane inhabited by a race of non-corporeal, godlike beings known as the Q. Their attitude toward the affairs of "lower" beings is one of general indifference, with the exception of squashing species they deem too dangerous, like Humans (but never the Borg, conveniently enough). From what little we see of the Continuum, it's similar to the Greek pantheon.
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Q hinted early on that his species were once not unlike bipeds. This was later confirmed by Quinn, who (unlike Q) had no reason to lie. Picard speculates that Q might be testing humanity because he thinks we have the potential to one day evolve into beings like the Q, and he is afraid that we might turn out wrong.
- "Ass" in Ambassador/Mouth of Sauron: Q interests regarding the human race are normally handled by a single representative. This Q has a history of insulting, tormenting, taunting, and otherwise harassing races all over the galaxy.
- Badass Fingersnap: If a Q snaps their fingers then everybody else has good reason to be terrified! It not only means that they are using their godlike powers, but they want to be dramatic about it!
- Brought Down to Normal: A common punishment for if a Q breaks the law is to spend the rest of their lives as a mortal being. One Q in particular was temporarily turned human as punishment for making the Borg aware of the Federation.
- Damned by Faint Praise: Probably the nicest thing anyone's said about the Q is Guinan's comment that some of the Q are almost respectable.
- Creative Sterility: The Q have experienced literally everything. Leaving them stagnant and bored. It is suggested that the Q who pestered the Enterprise did so and caused trouble across the universe just to shake things up.
- Even Evil Has Standards: While not explicitly evil, the Q do feel they have the right to judge whether or not an entire race has the right to live or die. However, they do not condone abusing their power to torment entire races simply for fun, something which got the main Q stripped of his powers and made mortal. Even when Q got his powers back it was implied that if he went back to his old ways, the same punishment would be inflicted on him again.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Whenever a Q communicates with mortals, they always appear to take the form of another human. When the continuum is shown to the crew of the Voyager in the episode "Death Wish", it is presented as a desert waystation on a road that could lead to anywhere in the universe. The other Q live in the waystation, sitting around and doing nothing in particular, since they had already done everything, seen everything, and learned everything. Later, in "The Q and the Grey", the continuum is transformed into a Civil War-era battlefield, with members of the Q appearing as both Union and Confederate soldiers.
- Great Gazoos:
- Q society and their physiognomy is mystery. Picard was offered the chance to study one; he decided that the experience would probably drive him 'round the bend and flatly turned it down.
- Q sent Voyager to witness the birth of the universe ('you could be the origin of the humanoid form!'), and when they didn't take him up on his offer, he shrank the ship and hanged it on a Christmas tree.
- Humanity on Trial: Part of the reason they tend to interfere with humans. When Q first appeared, he took on the appearance of Ollie North (referencing the Iran-Contra arms deals) and a drug-infused space trooper from the future. Earth's been warlike for most of its existence, and it could fall back into old habits very easily.
- Immortal Immaturity: A trait TNG's Q is infamous for - though his straight-laced friend, Q2, had a surfer bum quality of his own.
- Immortals Fear Death: Most of the Continuum find mortality terrifying, and they imprisoned Quinn rather than let him go through with his suicide.
- Jerkass Gods:
- Starfleet officers are instructed to go to Red Alert if they detect the arrival of any Q (though due to the "gods" part this is a pretty useless measure- if the Q in question was truly hostile, there is absolutely nothing any ship could do to stop them).
- Whenever they assume human form, they always make a point to wear the highest-ranking uniform in the room. Q even cycled though an Admiral's and Marshall's clothes, just to irritate Picard (a Captain, albeit one of a flagship).
- From knowledge gained in her extensive travels and long life, Guinan points out that most of the Q are actually responsible and benign beings who mind their own business, and find it immoral to interfere in the lower planes of existence, much as the Enterprise will not interfere with primitive hunter-gatherer aliens. The Q who visits the Enterprise-D is just a jerkass even by their standards (to the point that once they even briefly stripped him of his powers because he kept using them irresponsibly). If the Q are Asgardians, the Q who pesters humanity is their Loki - a trickster who stirs up trouble (though he gets more well-intentioned as he goes along).
- Meet the New Boss:
- According to second-hand sources, Q was inspired by Trelane, a childlike-yet-omnipotent trickster from TOS who shared Q's taste for medals and epaulettes.
- Some fanon and even licensed (but non-canon) works have retconned Trelane into being a member of the continuum, if an immature one.
- The Omnipotent/The Omniscient:
- Q is a lower version of this; while he claims omnipotence, other Q can still hurt him or take away his powers.
- Quinn politely admits to Janeway that despite Q's bluster, the Q are not actually "gods". Moreover, he says that while they are practically "omnipotent", this is for every possible frame of reference to human comprehension. They can make entire galaxies explode with a thought, or with a snap of their fingers turn the entire Borg Collective into cute puppies. But Quinn insists that up in the higher planes of existence in the Q continuum, there are still things they can't do, though such things are beyond our comprehension or description. He is much more modest about his race than Q is.
- Planet of Steves: Nearly every member is named "Q" or has a Q in their name somewhere. In fact, all Q address other Q simply as "Q", and every other Q knows who that Q is talking to without elaboration.
- Reality Warper: Big time. Even the babies are capable of altering the orbits of entire planets just days after birth.
- Smug Super: As Lady Q informs B'lanna during a snark-off, the Q attitude about themselves isn't a God Complex, it's a fact. They are that powerful (though it is worth noting Lady Q's pretty smug even by their standards).
- Space Police: They're god-like beings who can easily wipe out entire galaxies out of boredom, but they do have the universe's best interest in mind.
- Sufficiently Advanced Aliens: Rumors persist in some Trekkie circles that the Q are not as powerful as they say; it's all just smoke and mirrors.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: During their first encounter with Q, the Enterprise-D crew acknowledged he was potentially dangerous, but failed to find him at all awe-inspiring. Picard outright implies that the Federation had already become accustomed to dealing with pushy, god-like energy beings (which, if Captain Kirk's career is anything to go by, is quite true).
- Who Wants to Live Forever?:
- Quinn sought to kill himself rather than be stuck with these people for one more second. The Q do not even acknowledge each other, having exhausted all conversation over the eons. Horrifying.
- The renegade Q seemed to really enjoy life, and opposed Quinn's courtroom battle to end his existence. Quinn tries to make Janeway understand in her own terms by suggesting she think about what her life as an explorer would be like if there was nothing left to explore. Q tries to bribe Janeway with the chance to spend her life with him (just like Vash), which can be interpreted as a desperate need to be able to see the universe through the eyes of a humanoid. It demonstrates exactly what Quinn was saying: that there is nothing left to explore and the only alternative Q can think of is to see it afresh through a mortal's eyes.
- You Cannot Grasp the True Form: A non-malevolent variation. Mortals can't perceive the Q in their natural appearance, to say nothing of the realm they inhabit.
Debut: Star Trek: Nemesis
The Remans are the telepathic, photosensitive denizens of Remus, a neighboring planet to Romulus. They were subjugated by the Romulans sometime prior to the 22nd century, and serve as the Star Empire's heavy infantry as well as hard laborers.
- Earth-Shattering Kaboom: While not explicitly stated, it's implied that the supernova that destroyed Romulus also wiped out Remus.
- Looks Like Orlok: Their appearance was directly inspired by the Trope Namer, Nosferatu, though the Remans look more bat-like.
- Mind Rape: At least some Remans are telepathic, which Shinzon's viceroy uses to psychically assault Deanna Troi in Nemesis.
- Mooks: Seem to serve as these to high-ranking Romulans, with the implication in Enterprise that if a Romulan screws up sufficiently, he's handed over to the Remans.
- Proud Warrior Race: Unlike the Romulans, who are more of a Proud Soldier Race, the Remans seem to relish combat.
- Remember the New Guy?: They supposedly saw a lot of action in the Dominion War, but weren't actually seen on-screen until Star Trek: Nemesis, set four years later.
- Slave Mooks: They do a lot of the Empire's dilithium mining, and were frequently used as Cannon Fodder during the Dominion War.
- Tidally Locked Planet: Remus is one. The Remans live on the dark side, hence their photosensitivity.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
Homeworld: Romulus (originally Vulcan)
The Romulans are a splinter group that rejected the teachings of Surak, emigrating from Vulcan to colonize the worlds of Romulus and Remus. You might consider them the anti-puritans. Interestingly, the Romulan Star Empire is very similar to that of the Roman Republic before it became the Roman Empire, with a large senate and a single committee above that. Kirk had a few run-ins with the Romulans, causing them to disappear into space to lick their wounds; they emerged as a main antagonist of TNG, effectively replacing the Klingons.
- Anti-Villain: Surprisingly, given some of the below tropes, some Romulan antagonists (The nameless Romulan Commander from TOS, and Nero) have sympathetic motivations, backstories, or otherwise admirable traits.
- Big Bad: On TNG. Not as powerful as the Borg, not as slippery as the Cardassians, but more recurring than either and are behind half the evil schemes in that series. They arguably became this again on Enterprise, until a planned arc involving the Federation-Romulan War was Cut Short.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: On the surface, they still look almost identical to their Vulcan ancestors. Inwardly, a few thousand years of separation mean there's just enough difference to make medical transplants impossible. The modern Romulan is actually more biologically compatible with a Klingon than a Vulcan.
- Catchphrase: A common Romulan salutation is "Jolan Tru". It's used as both "Hello" and "Goodbye", but the literal translation is unknown.
- Establishing Character Moment: "Balance of Terror" shows everything one needs to know about the Romulans: they're Vulcans who did not reject their warlike past, so devious their ships are invisible when it's supposed to be impossible, the Federation didn't know their faces until they chanched over a century after they fought a war with them, still honorable in their own way, and extremely dangerous when they actually bother to fight.
- Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: The Romulans consider everything within their field of vision to be rightfully theirs. Accordingly, it goes against their character to honor any truce or treaty, even when the betrayal is utterly stupid (pissing off the Federation and Bajor during a war for their very survival, for example).
- Culture Police: Unlike the Klingons, who were depicted as 'strong & silent' types before being retooled into Boisterous Bruisers, the Romulans went in the opposite direction. On TNG, the Romulans became much more rigid in style and demeanor, echoing Communist China upon which the new Romulans were based. This goes for the females, too. (No more long-legged femme fatales, like the ones we saw in TOS and Star Trek V: The Final Frontier). The Tal Shiar is everywhere, and everyone dresses inconspicuously on Romulus to avoid attracting their attention. They are the modest utilitarians to Cardassia's Gucci-wearing aesthetes.Garak: (grimly reminiscing) "Ah, yes, Romulus. How well I remember it. You'll find the predominant color to be grey: The buildings, the clothes, the people. Did you know that the Romulan heart itself is grey? It's true. And altogether appropriate for such an unimaginative race."
- The Dreaded: The Earth-Romulan War was so hard on the Federation founders that, even centuries later, the Federation is still terrified of going at war with them again, with only the Borg surpassing them.
- Drink Order: Romulan ale is a bright-blue, alcoholic beverage. Made illegal in Kirk's time, the embargo was lifted when the Rolumans agreed to help drive out the Dominion.
- Earth-Shattering Kaboom: In the 2009 film, a star close to Romulus goes supernova. Although Ambassador Spock attempted to prevent the supernova from striking the planet using red matter, he was ultimately unsuccessful and Romulus was blown to bits. Couldn't have happened to nicer people.
- Laser-Guided Karma: Had the Romulan government agreed to Spock's reunification plans with Vulcan, they likely would have been saved sooner.
- Enemy Mine: With an alliance with the Cardassians, and a neutrality agreement with the Romulans, the Dominion had the Federation on the ropes. Captain Sisko realized they couldn't fight the war without help, and needed to convince the Romulans that their truce with the Founders would not last. To that end, he cooperated in assassinating a Romulan Senator and pinning it on the Dominion. And it worked! How very Romulan.Garak: And the more the Dominion denies their guilt, the more the Romulans will believe they're guilty, because that's exactly what they would have done in their place!
- Equal-Opportunity Evil: Some of their top-ranking officers and politicos are women. They had an Empress at one point according to Q.
- Romulans also have gotten rid of the very unsavory side of their Vulcan heritage. They've genetically removed the Pon Farr and as such no longer partake in Vulcan rituals where a woman could have a man challenge her fiance to a duel to the death and end up with a man she's forcefully married to and have sex with.
- Evil Counterpart Race/Shadow Archetype: To Vulcans.
- Evil Eyebrows: Theirs are accentuated by a distinct, "V"-shaped forehead ridge. In the films, the ridges are completely gone, but the eyebrows are still longer and hairier than the Vulcans.
- The Faceless: Romulans were aware of Humanity for some time before Earth knew of them. Infiltrating the highest levels of the Vulcan High Command, the Romulans got a full scope of Earth's capabilities. The Enterprise NX-01 inadvertently encountered a Romulan minefield at one point, officially the first time Humanity became aware of the Romulans. Even after fighting the Earth-Romulan War, it wasn't until the 23rd century that Humans actually saw the Romulans without their helmets on. (ENT: "Minefield"; TOS: "Balance of Terror")
- Fantastic Racism: The Romulans believe themselves to superior to everyone, and still cling to the idea that that one day, the Romulan Empire will rule the entire galaxy. (TNG: "The Neutral Zone", "Data's Day", "The Enemy") According to Miles O'Brien, there was no piece of technology that the Romulans didn't claim they invented before everyone else.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: In their TOS apperances, the male Romulans wore gold togas with a sash over their shoulder. (Violet sashes for commanders, blue for the worker bees.) The ladies, however, wore form-fitting uniform with a violet sleeve.
- Flip-Flop of God: Trek's star charts place the Romulan Empire into the Beta Quadrant of the galaxy. However, in Deep Space Nine, they are changed to an Alpha Quadrant power to include them in the Dominion struggle.
- The loose explanation they came up with is that the capital planets of the Romulans and Klingons are in the Alpha Quadrant, but most of their empires are located in the Beta Quadrant. The dividing line between Alpha and Beta runs through Earth. Most of the Federation is in the Alpha Quadrant, but parts spill over into the Beta Quadrant. If the disk of the galaxy is viewed top-down with Earth at the bottom, the Romulans and Klingons are "east" of the Federation, while the Cardassians are "west". The Romulans are located core-wards from the Klingons (which also explains why advanced Borg scouting attacks hit both the Romulans and Federation, but not the Klingons).
- Interservice Rivalry: As with the Cardassians, the regular military hates the Tal Shiar, who can pull rank on them with impunity. Some commanders are more vocal about their dislike than others.
- Lady of War: As said several Romulan military commanders are female. When presented as a Worthy Opponent they will likely be this.
- Let No Crisis Go to Waste: The image-conscious Romulans prefer to play a waiting game with their opponents, attempting to trick them into breaking — or appearing to break — an agreement so as to give them a solid justification for striking.
- Leitmotif: The Romulan theme is pretty catchy, and it's too bad those villains weren't as memorable as their theme music.
- Man Behind the Man: If some villain is implied to have a secret benefactor, the benefactor will probably be the Romulans. Especially if the villain is a Vulcan or a Klingon, just to show how traitorous or gullible they are as both species regard the Romulans as long-standing enemies.
- Manipulative Bastard: They spend a lot of their screen-time on Enterprise setting the Alpha Quadrant's major players against each other.
- The Neutral Zone: Star Trek has a number of Neutral Zones, each established after a never-seen war sometime during the 23rd century; but the buffer around Romulus is the most notorious, and most-fortified. In fact, almost everybody in Star Trek just refers to it as "the Neutral Zone", rather than by its proper name (the Romulan Neutral Zone).
- Noble Bird of Prey: When Surak's reforms spread rapidly across Vulcan in the 4th century, a minority rejected Surak's ideals. Those rebels marched beneath the banner of the raptor's wings, which became the symbol of the Romulan Star Empire. Their warships are designated "Bird-of-Prey" (not to be confused with the Klingon Bird-of-Prey from the same century) and the "Warbird" (24th century battleship). The latter sports a unique wrap-around design and stretches about twice as long as a Federation Galaxy-class, but with a lower top speed.
- Officer and a Gentleman: In the novels, they often come across as dignified and ultra-conservative aristocrats rather then simply as bad guys, though the Romulan commanders that appear on TV sometimes do have that aspect to them. The more 'admirable' ones seem to behave this way.
- Proud Warrior Race Guy: More like a Proud Soldier Race, mind, given their disciplined and strict way of life.
- Secret Police: Known as the Tal Shiar.
- Shoulders of Doom: The infamous "mattress cover" costumes used on TNG. Its hard to look menacing when dressed up like a character from Dynasty.
- Slave Mooks: The Remans, see their entry above.
- Space Cold War: Throughout the franchise, they are depicted as frosty, Machiavellian schemers who are always at war/in an uneasy truce with the Federation.
- Space Romans: They have a Senate, they're ruled by a Praetor... in the original series, they had a rank of Centurion and bronze-ish helmets, too.
- Spikes of Villainy: Their soldiers wear bandoleers lined with spikes.
- Stealth in Space: The Romulans almost never fly anywhere without the cloak permanently switched on.
- Strawman Emotional: Disagreed with Surak's logic and left to start their own, more amoral, militaristic society.
- Though overall, they are still very composed and disciplined. Ironically despite their imperialistic empire, they seem to contradict the idea that Vulcans who don't control their emotions are a dangerous menace, since on a personal level they rarely if ever violently lose their temper or hint at uncontrollable emotions. In-universe this is attributed to their lack of suppression; there is no emotional build-up to blow off when they lose their cool.
- Token Evil Teammate / Aloof Ally: In their Enemy Mine alliance with many other Alpha Quadrant powers to combat the Dominion.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: In TOS and Star Trek VI, they were treated with far more respect and deference by the Federation. Romulan diplomats are even allowed to attend Presidential briefings. This underscores just how foul and alien the Klingons are judged to be. The dynamic was reversed in TNG.
- Unrealistic Black Hole: The Romulans use an artificial singularity to power their warp drives, as opposed to the (cleaner) matter-antimatter reaction of a Starfleet ship.
- Wild Card: The Romulans have always been the most opportunistic of Alpha Quadrant races, and with the Dominion incursion, they are put in the perfect position to watch their biggest rivals slug it out in a long, futile war. This could explain why Starfleet or the Vulcans didn't approach Romulus for help at once: they could go either way. Since the Federation was taking such heavy losses already it would just about have finished them off to have a third fleet turn against them.
- Worthy Opponent: Several of the most memorable Romulan characters in the original series, as well as a number of times in the novelizations.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager
The only species the Borg truly fear. They hail from another dimension called fluidic space, and are territorial rather than outright hostile.
- Absolute Xenophobe: All that is known of Species 8472's culture is that they are highly territorial; they consider all other lifeforms to be genetically impure. Any intruder entering fluidic space is seen as 'contaminating' the realm, and is dealt with accordingly. (VOY: "Scorpion", "Scorpion, Part II")
- Absurdly Sharp Claws: The main mode of attack. One swipe can decapitate a helmeted Hirogen.
- The Dreaded: They are this to the Borg, who are The Dreaded to the entire ST universe. And it makes absolute sense:
- They use organic technology which the Borg are unable to assimilate, and ridiculously outgun them. Case in point, a single one their Bishops destroyed a fleet of Borg cubes, And the only reason the Bishop took damage was because a Cube performed a suicide run, and that only put out the ship temporarily.
- On a personal level, they are Lightning Bruisers that are twice as tall as humans, strong enough to match or exceed almost any shown species, and a Healing Factor that makes them practically unkillable and immune to even Borg probes and nanites, with telepathic powers on top of it.
- On top of that, they are highly smart, capable of scheming, infiltration and manipulation, the latter two the Borg suck in. It's lucky for the ST universe that they chose to start their annihilation campaign in the Delta Quadrant and against the Borg. Otherwise the Federation and their peer societies would have never known what hit them.
- Eviler Than Thou: They're more lethal than even the Borg. Yes, the near-unstoppable, all-consuming cybernetic Hive Mind that has been the terror of the galaxy for centuries is completely outclassed by the genetically superior, highly territorial eldritch aliens. The Borg want to assimilate everyone into their collective; Species 8472 wants to annihilate every other living thing because they consider it an affront to their vaunted purity.
- Evil Is Visceral: Their ships are organic and the (CGI) aliens themselves look "more organic" than the usual Rubber Forehead Alien because they don't wear clothes, have extra limbs and strange eyes with complicated irises. Also, they hail from something called fluidic space.
- Evil Versus Oblivion: Species 8472's war with the Borg: the latter is a deadly force that wants to assimilate the galaxy, the former is an unstoppable juggernaut that wants to destroy it entirely. Contrary to what the Borg claim, Species 8472 are not aggressors; it had in fact long been known that the Borg themselves started the war between the two species by invading fluidic space to assimilate their technology. Species 8472 "merely" launched a counter-invasion to end the threat to fluidic space forever.
- A Form You Are Comfortable With: Concerned about the threat posed by Voyager, Species 8472 dons meatsuits and builds a recreation of Starfleet Academy within as a staging ground for an intelligence gathering mission on Earth. The plan is uncovered by Voyager' and peace talks commence. Voyager eventually convinces them that the Federation has no quarrel with them.
- Genius Bruiser: Species 8472 is telepathic and can send Kes and Tuvok messages.
- The Giant: Twice as tall as humans.
- Healing Factor: Their regenerative cells work incredibly fast, as demonstrated in the episode "Prey", when a lone Species 8472 is attacked by a Hirogen hunting party with heavy weapons. Thinking it dead, they take it back to their ship, only to discover otherwise...
- Their incredibly powerful regenerative capabilities are also the primary reason why they pose such a threat to the Borg. Species 8472 is outright immune to Borg assimilation because any Borg nanites that are injected into their blood stream will be dismantled by their immune system faster than they can replicate.
- Hellish Pupils
- Kryptonite-Proof Suit: Their autoimmune system also makes them impervious to Borg assimilation. Species 8472 blood simply rejects the nanites.
- Lean and Mean: They are a bit on the thin side.
- Living Ship: They travel around in a type of organic spacecraft known only as a bioship, which is composed of the flesh as their pilots. The bioship's main weapon is powerful enough to destroy a Borg cube in only a few shots. Likewise, when a Borg cube rammed a bioship, both vessels were blown to bits despite the comparatively smaller mass of the bioship. The weapons of eight bioships (referred to in Star Trek: Armada II as "Species 8472 battleships") can combine firepower to destroy an entire planet. And they also heal like their pilots.
- Manipulative Bastard: Secton 31, Tal Shiar, Obsidian Order, The Founders? Yeah they're nothing compare to Species 8472.
- Mind Rape: They subject Kes to violent and disturbing visions, premonitions, and threats whenever they're close enough to sense her thoughts.
- Poisonous Person: Their somatic cells can become extremely virulent when in a foreign blood-stream. When a member of Species 8472 attacks a victim with its claws, some of the former's cells are left in the wound. These stray cells multiply rapidly, consuming their prey from the inside out while the victim remains conscious.
- Super Strength: Strong enough to charge through walls, send people flying, figuratively and literally crush the super strong cyborgs that are the Borg's, amd tear through starship hulls.
- You Are Number 6: Species 8472 is their boilerplate Borg designation. Star Trek Online calls them "Undine".
Debut: Star Trek: Enterprise
A race of transdimensional beings, they created the Delphic Expanse to make our universe more habitable for their people. To do this, they built a number of spheres that could distort normal space, making it more amendable for themselves. Being transdimensional, they have the ability to see multiple timelines and foresaw a reality where they were on the brink of total conquest, but were defeated by the Federation. To prevent this, they developed a divinity among the Xindi and convinced them that humanity would wipe them out in the future, setting the plan to destroy Earth in motion.
- Abusive Precursors: They created the Delphic Expanse a thousand years ago for the purpose of transforming our galaxy into something their race they can inhabit.
- God Guise: The Xindi referred to the Sphere-Builders as "the Guardians," and revered them as religious figures. After the destruction of the Xindi homeworld, the Builders appeared to the Xindi survivors (convenient, that), lending them maps to habitable planets and resources. Similarly, the Triannons referred to them as "the Makers," and believed that they were transforming the Delphic Expanse into a paradise for their eventual return.
- Greater-Scope Villain: Of the Temporal Cold War. Their relation to the Suliban and the Na'Kuhl is unclear, but it's a good bet that the Sphere Builders' mission was by far the most destructive of that conflict, and their ability to examine alternate timelines put them perilously close to achieving it.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: In their plan to destroy Earth, Enterprise ended up destroying the sphere network, making it unlikely they'll invade in the future.
- It's the Only Way to Be Sure: They're desperate to prevent the Federation from being founded, and are constantly pushing the Xindi to exterminate mankind down to the last child to make sure there won't be any chance of a revival.
- Hostile Terraforming: The Spheres are used to make normal space habitable for their race prior to invasion. In the Bad Future seen in "Azati Prime", they wiped out 50,000 light-years of space (1/3rd of the galaxy) before The Federation finally pushed them back.
- Sinister Geometry: The spheres, which are nineteen kilometers across and made entirely of a single alloy.
- Time Travel for Fun and Profit: Using their inter-dimensional abilities, the Builders foresaw that the Federation would repel their eventual invasion, and sought to snuff Earth out preemptively.
Debut: Star Trek: Enterprise
- Bald of Evil
- From Nobody to Nightmare: The Suliban were originally just a backwards race from a nondescript world. Thanks to Future Guy's genetic meddling, they now have a host of superpowers and cloaking technology, making them a threat to many of the spacefaring species in the Alpha/Beta quadrants.
- My Species Doth Protest Too Much: Not all of them work for Future Guy. In "Broken Bow" Archer encounters a Suliban resistance against the Cabal, and in "Detained" the Tandarans have an internment camp full of innocent Suliban civilians.
- Rubber Man: Thanks to Future Guy, many Suliban have the ability to squeeze through tight cracks.
- Space Nomads: Their homeworld is uninhabitable by the 22nd century, so most Suliban live in space stations called Helixes.
- Starter Villain: Served as the main recurring antagonists of Enterprise for the beginning of the show, before being replaced by the more credible threat of the Xindi in Season 3.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: In the 23rd and 24th centuries, despite being a well-known species in the 22nd century.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager
A race of space warthogs who inhabit many sectors of the Delta Quadrant (Like the Kazon, their race was scattered following a war). They share much in common with Bolians, including a knack for cooking - though their jolly nature is taken Up to Eleven.
- Binary Suns: Trinary, actually.
- Classy Cravat: The men all wear these.
- Fire-Breathing Diner: It was hinted at that Talaxians have a higher tolerance for spicy foods than other races. In "Faces", Neelix prepares a 'watered-down' plomeek soup, a mere sip of which knocks a sturdy Vulcan flat. Neelix, however, is able to guzzle down the soup as a beverage.
- Hollywood Tone-Deaf: Talaxian vocal cords are actually incapable of singing on-key, though Neelix managed to wheeze out a halfway-decent ditty.
- Hot Blooded Sideburns: Negated by Talaxian pacifism. However, tugging on their whiskers is considered a pleasurable come-on.
- Our Gnomes Are Weirder: Not a direct inspiration for Jar Jar Binks, but pretty close.
- The Scrounger: This seems to be their species' hat.
- Spare Body Parts: Surprisingly, Talaxians have two spinal columns, similar to Klingons.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
Homeworld: Talos IV
The very first antagonistic aliens seen in Star Trek. A species of incredibly powerful telepaths, the Talosians eke out a blissful existence beneath the ruined surface of their homeworld, Talos IV. Little is known about their culture or technology, but Starfleet has barred all access to Talos — punishable by death — for fear of their telepathic abilities becoming a danger to the Federation.
- After the End: The Talosians destroyed their old civilization in a nuclear war thousands of years ago, and the survivors moved underground to escape the ensuing holocaust.
- Binary Suns: Talos is a circumbinary system, with eleven planets orbiting two suns clustered at the center.
- Creative Sterility: As a consequence of using their telepathic projections to escape the bleak realities of their post-apocalyptic lives, the Talosians have forgotten how to use or maintain most of the technology built by their ancestors.
- Dying Race: The Keeper fears the Talosians are facing extinction as a result of their Creative Sterility, hence his plan to create a colony of human slaves on Talos IV.
- Godzilla Threshold: Starfleet General Order 7: "No vessel under any condition, emergency or otherwise, is to visit Talos IV." As of 2267 it's the only regulation that carries the threat of capital punishment if broken. The exact rationale for this directive is never explicitly stated, but presumably the Talosians' telepathic powers scared the bigwigs quite a bit.
- My Brain Is Big: The most non-human thing about them is their enlarged cranium.
- Numbered Homeworld: Talos IV.
- Telepathy: Their signature ability. Not only can they read minds, they can project complex and incredibly realistic illusions into the minds of others.
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: They're not bad guys, just desperate. Everything they put Captain Pike and his crew through is part of a last-ditch attempt to stave off extinction, and when they finally accept that they've failed they allow their prisoners to go free with no hard feelings.
- We Will Use Manual Labor in the Future: The Talosians tried to create a colony of human slaves through Captain Pike and Vina in order to stave off extinction.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
Homeworld: Tellar (or Tellar Prime)
Along with the Humans, Vulcans and Andorians, founding members of the United Federation of Planets. Forthright pig-like aliens with broad bodies and bushy beards, they thrive on argument.
- Blue and Orange Morality: Blustering insults represent formal politeness; a conversation begins with complaints and insults.
- Hufflepuff House: One of the founding races of the Federation, but get very little screentime or mentions.
- Jews Love to Argue: Of all the TOS races to be brought back in Enterprise, these guys are painted with the broadest brush. Sarek said something in a scene once that was meant to demonstrate that he was stand-offish and kinda rude, but we like Sarek so it's now the defining attribute of this species.
- Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Short, hairy, and with a bad attitude, the Tellarites are Space Dwarves to the Vulcans' Space Elves.
- Pig Man
- Space Jews
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Seriesnote
Homeworld: Earth (or Terra)
An alternate human species hailing from the Mirror Universe. In this reality they have forged a brutal Empire that rules through terror and frequently enslaves or exterminates aliens, making for a stark Evil Counterpart to The Federation.
While originally considered physiologically identical to prime-universe humans, Star Trek: Discovery reveals a single distinct difference: Terrans are more sensitive to light.
- Absolute Xenophobe: They're characterized this way in Discovery, but TOS and Enterprise portray them as more Equal-Opportunity Evil despite still being human-centric.
- Alternate Universe Reed Richards Is Awesome: 22nd century Terrans have all the tech of their counterparts and more (an Enterprise NX-01 with a cloaking device, tractor beam and escape pods, all features the "good" Enterprise lacks)... but they're also violent, bigoted assholes who got that tech via murdering and enslaving the crap out of everyone they run into.
- The Empire: The Terran Empire is very much this, being devoted to conquest and control of alien races, and even provides the page image.
- Equal-Opportunity Evil: Aliens are permitted to join Starfleet and even serve as officers, although they're still largely treated as second-class citizens. This has the effect of an Enterprise which is more cosmopolitan than the good version, in terms of crew (regular Enterprise is eighty-odd humans, one Denobulan and a Vulcan who didn't want to be there. Mirror Enterprise has Andorians, Tellarites and Orions in its crew).
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: The majority of them are vicious, raving nutcases who are incapable of acting good for even five seconds. Mirror Georgiou isn't able to restrain her Fantastic Racism and arrogance for that long. Even after turning vaguely good-ish, some of them (Mirror Bashir, for example) are still unstable psychos. However, there are a few occasional subversions, such as Smiley O'Brien, or Mirror!Gabriel Lorca, who was able to impersonate his prime counterpart for a few months.
- Evil Counterpart: To the United Federation of Planets.
- Fantastic Racism: Their hat until Deep Space Nine.
- HeelFace Turn: In Deep Space Nine they're fighting for freedom against the Klingons and Cardassians, and have largely left their xenophobia behind. They've even got aliens such as Trill and Ferengi in their ranks!
- In Spite of a Nail: Despite their radically different history from that of the Federation, the same people generally end up in the same places at the same time.
- Klingon Promotion: A common way for Terran Starfleet officers to advance in rank.
- La Résistance: After being enslaved by the Klingon-Cardassian Alliance, the Terrans eventually put together a rebellion and try to win their freedom back.
- Laser-Guided Karma: After two centuries of violently killing everyone who didn't bend the knee to them, they were overthrown by a Klingon-Cardassian-Bajoran alliance.
- Made a Slave: The entire race suffers this after the Terran Empire is overthrown by the Klingon-Cardassian Alliance, in a nice stroke of irony.
- Space-Filling Empire: The Terran Empire is said to control an astonishingly huge tract of the galaxy by the 23rd century, more territory than prime-universe Starfleet has even explored in its century of existence.
- Weakened by the Light: Terrans are slightly photosensitive compared to prime universe humans.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
A temperamental and isolationist species of crystalline builds. The Tholians aren't on good terms with the Federation, generally staying in the borders of their own territory, responding to any violation of their territory with force. By the 24th century, diplomatic relations with the Federation are still decidedly frosty.
Originally appearing as a one-off species in the original series, the Tholians became memorable for just how little was revealed about them. For near forty years, a head on a viewscreen was the only image of them, until Enterprise, and the advent of CGI, allowed a better look at them.
- Beehive Barrier: Their famous Tholian Webs, energy barriers generated by their ships, which can imprison and destroy other ships. The more Tholians there are around, the quicker they can make them.
- Berserk Button: Don't lie to them. They take it poorly.
- Bystander Syndrome: They decided to sit out the Dominion War, signing a non-aggression treaty.
- Evil Is Burning Hot: Their preferred climate has a temperature of 480 Kelvin. Tholia is often speculated to be a Y-class planet, the most hostile environment possible for humanoids.
- Ludicrous Precision: Punctuality is their hat. If they grant you "one hour and fifty-three minutes" for a rescue mission, you have exactly 6,780 seconds to finish up before they open fire.
- Real Life Writes the Plot: Or in the case, means the plot doesn't get written. Ron Moore wanted to use the Tholians during DS9, but the technology required to depict them just didn't exist in the 90s. It wasn't until season 4 of Enterprise showed a Tholian in all their glory.
- Silicon-Based Life: Provides the page image.
- Spider People: A vaguely-humanoid head and torso with claws and six legs. It's hinted that the can produce webbing ("Tholian silk"), which presumably inspired their signature starship weapons.
- Starfish Aliens: They stand out as one of the odder species. Insectoid androgynous crystalline things, who survive in extreme heat and can even function as short-range living communicators.
- Weaksauce Weakness: The cold. Since they operate at extremely high temperatures, lowering it causes them pain. Lower it far enough, and they shatter.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
Homeworld: Iota Geminorium IV
Headless, legless cat bodies which can reproduce by the thousands. Most of a tribble's physiognomy is comprised of the uterus, as they are born pregnant.
- Big Eater: Actually, a tribble can subsist on very little (a crumb is enough to spawn a litter of ten), but their appetites are apparently bottomless.
- The Blank: Tribbles have eyes and mouths, but they are located near the belly and are so small as to be imperceptible. The original prop tribbles were based on a lucky rabbit's foot keychain.
- Body of Bodies: Huckster Cyrano Jones attempted to genetically modify the tribbles to reproduce less, making them safe for human ecosystems and "a great pet". Unbeknowst to Jones at the time, his lab work was "slipshod" and caused the Tribbles to instead grow to huge size. Dr. McCoy figured out that these so called giant tribbles were actually a colony of tribbles, similar to a rat king.
- Explosive Breeder: An average litter of ten....every twelve hours.
- Fling a Light into the Future: A number of tribbles were accidentally brought back to Deep Space Nine from the past, and the species was re-established, undoing the Klingon Empire's efforts to bring about the extinction of the tribble. Deep Space 9 was subsequently overrun with the creatures.Sisko: I'm open to suggestions people.
Dax: We could build a new station.
- Happy Fun Ball: Klingon hunting parties were no match for the tribble. Eventually they got fed up and plotted a course to the tribble homeworld, blowing it to smithereens.Odo: Another glorious chapter in Klingon history. Tell me, do they still sing songs of 'The Great Tribble Hunt?'
- The Nose Knows: A tribble can detect a Klingon no matter what they look like.
- Ridiculously Cute Critter: Tribbles evolved to purr whenever they're touched by a humanoid. The cooing sound produces a tranquilizing effect—but the fun ends there. Tribbles are also used as a healing device by petting them while on away missions in the Orion Pirates video game and in Star Trek Online.
- Sitcom Archnemesis: Klingons are unique among Star Trek's races in their extreme hatred of the creatures. The feeling was apparently mutual, because tribbles emit a loud shrieking noise instead of their normal soothing purr in the presence of Klingons. This caused problems for Arne Darvin, an undercover Klingon spy.
Debut: Star Trek: The Next Generation
Trills have evolved to coexist with an ageless alien slug (known as a symbiont) in their abdomen. Ordinary Trills are weak, standard humanoids; when "joined", however, they gain the knowledge and experience of the symbiont's previous hosts. Left to their own devices, the symbionts are an endangered species, living out a dull existence in underground pools. The Trills sported a rubber forehead on TNG, but makeup artist Micheal Westmore unashamedly changed their look when Terry Farrell was cast as one. Westmore then suggested, meh, just give her spots like we gave Famke, and the rest is history.
- Alien Sea: According to Jadzia, Trill's oceans have a purple tint compared to those of Earth.
- Bizarre Alien Biology:
- They are noted for their cold hands, for some reason. This is probably the least bizarre thing about them.
- The brain of a joined Trill has two cerebral nuclei and two brain wave patterns. Dr. Bashir compared them with two linked computers, which both work for the same task.
- Body Surf: In a toss-up, the life of the symbiont matters more than its host's. In the event of sudden injury, sometimes the body is sacrificed to keep the worm alive.
- Can't Live Without You: Ninety-three hours after the joining, the host and symbiont are completely interdependent, but once that threshold is passed, the joining can't be reversed without killing the host. Worse yet, an unjoined Trill will suffer a panic attack at losing all of their memories and talents.
- Likewise, the symbiont will also die unless returned to their habitat (pools of nutrient-rich milk on the Trill homeworld) or rejoined within 48 hours.
- Early Installment Weirdness: It's not a fault of TNG that DS9 would later state that the Trill have a much larger presence in the Federation than is initially shown (Curzon Dax was responsible for the signing of the Khitomer accords, probably the single most important piece of legislation next to the Prime Directive) but in hindsight it jars with the "The Host", which goes to great pains to show that nobody in Starfleet (not even the esteemed Dr. Bev) knows anything about the nature of these beings. The TNG Trill also have rubber foreheads rather than spots, and the symbiote is shown as totally taking over the host instead of forming a combined consciousness.
- Fantastic Caste System: The joined have more prestige then the unjoined.
- The Hedonist: A largely positive example. As part of their contribution to their symbiont's massive library of experiences, Trill hosts are encouraged to indulge in just about every pleasure under the sun(s).
- Heroic Host: The Dax symbiont helped negotiate the Khitomer accords, and even (gulp) dated Bones McCoy in medical school.
- Humanoid Aliens: At least for the humanoid Trill. The only outside difference is the leopard-like spots on the neck. The Trill symbionts? Not so much.
- Immortality Bisexuality: Dax has been married six times: Four times as the bride, and twice as the groom. In one episode, Jadzia Dax bucks the system and kisses her former spouse, who happens to be a lady. Odan tried to put the moves on Dr. Crusher once his symbiont was transplanted into a woman, but, being as this aired in 1991, she emphatically said no.
- Kangaroo Pouch Ride: The symbionts are surginally inserted through a slit in their host's abdomen.
- Literal Split Personality:
- The zhian'tara, the Trill answer to the Vulcan katra. It allows joined Trill to convene with their previous hosts for a day. During the rite, the personalities of the old hosts are telepathically implanted into willing participants (usually loved ones or friends) by an employee of the Symbiosis Commission.
- Trills can also commune with old hosts on their own using the Rite of Emergence, though it only works on one personality. This involves lots of chanting and an incense pot full of mud; possibly the kind the symbionts live in, though this is just conjecture.
- Little Bit Beastly: The spots go "all the way down", baby.
- Living Forever Is Awesome: Joined Trills have a big legacy to live up to. With that in mind, the most important quality looked for in candidates (after high intelligence and aptitude in their chosen field) seems to be a bon vivant personalty that has a good chance to nurture a noted scientist, artist, or politician.
- The Masquerade: It is widely believed that only a small fraction (0.1%) of the humanoid Trill population is suitable for being joined with a symbiont, which is why unjoined Trill have to undergo such an extensive vetting process to become a candidate for being a host. In truth, almost half of all humanoid Trill are capable of being joined. The Trill government continues to perpetuate the myth, lest the symbionts become a commodity to be bought, sold and fought over. As long as it is widely believed that only the chosen few can become hosts, the government reasons, such piracy can be avoided.
- No Biochemical Barriers: Averted just this one time. In rare cases, symbionts can be joined with non-Trills, but the differences in biology means this is only a stop-gap. ("The Host", TNG) Commander Riker was briefly joined to the Odan symbiont so that Odan could complete peace negotiations, and to keep Odan alive until a replacement host arrived. While this ordeal saved Odan's life, it nearly killed Riker.
- The Nth Doctor/Really 700 Years Old: The symbionts. The humanoid Trill have a lifespan close to humans'.
- Progressively Prettier: In addition to the forehead, we never see Dax's enflamed belly bulge out disturbingly as Odan's does in "The Host", and more importantly he doesn't sport the distinctive Trill markings. There are definite perks to being a Trek regular.
- Weaksauce Weakness: Trill are strongly allergic to insect bites, because the toxins interfere with the biochemical reactions between host and symbiont ("The Siege", DS9).
- You're Nothing Without Your Phlebotinum: The symbionts are helpless, slimy worms who possess the cumulative knowledge of their previous hosts, but lack the important stuff, like hands.
- Your Normal Is Our Taboo: Joined Trill are forbidden to marry someone they were married to in a previous life. This is done in order to prevent "an aristocracy of the joined", according to René Echevarria. Word of God is that the episode delving into this particular taboo was written specifically so the two current hosts were both female, allowing audiences in the 1990s to identify with an otherwise completely alien custom.
Debut: Star Trek: Voyager.
The Vidiians are Mad Doctors, possessing medical technology far more advanced than Starfleet. They've had a lot of practice, as they must constantly replace their skin and organs with transplants (often stolen) to remain alive, a procedure that makes them somewhat unpopular with almost everyone else in the Delta Quadrant. They suffer from a necrotizing plague called "the Phage", which causes their bodies to devour their own flesh.
- All Genes Are Co-Dominant: They are able to steal organs from every other sentient race for transplant with no risk of rejection, a feat which even current Federation medical science cannot replicate. Despite this, they seem unable to actually cure the phage to begin with.
- Deadly Doctor: Vidiians wield a surgical instrument as a weapon. It acts as a combination phaser, medical tricorder, and transporter tag.
- Driven to Villainy: The Vidiians are driven to their organ raids out of extreme desperation; before the Phage struck, they were a peaceful and cultured race of scientists.
- Facial Horror: The current crop no longer even remotely resemble their original selves.
- Meaningful Name: The name for the disease comes from Greek φᾰγεῖν phagein, which means "to eat". The organs of people suffering from the Phage literally devour themselves.
- Misapplied Phlebotinum: The Vidiians are able to split hybrid humanoids into fully functional beings. Doing so, they should be able to create as many organs as possible to meet their needs, or cure the Phage.
- Mix-and-Match Man: Their bodies are patchwork of different alien skins — anything they can lay their hands on.
- Organ Theft: Trying to cure the phage has become an obsession with the Vidiians and many of their politicians and scientists have never developed compassion for the people that keep them alive. Scenes of them walking through the ship, gunning redshirts down and cataloguing their organs for later extraction are appalling (with the EMH trying to help a pregnant women proving to be particularly tense).
- Rubber-Forehead Alien: See Was Once a Man below.
- Something We Forgot: The Phage was eventually cured by the same alien "Think Tank" which tried to recruit Seven, but Voyager had long since passed Vidiian space by then.
- Vile Villain, Saccharine Show: Their makeup and modus operandi is rather grotesque compared to the rest of the show, even compared to all of the many visually and morally unappealing Rubber-Forehead Aliens that litter the show. In the aptly-titled "Faces", one of the Vidiians steals a goldshirt's face and applies it over his own.
- Weaponized Teleportation: With their hand-held weapons, Vidiian organ harvesters can zap a victim and "beam" organs straight from their bodies.
- Was Once a Man / Tragic Villain: The Vidiians are introduced as a race of Frankenstein's monsters, composed of a grotesque patchwork of body parts taken from other species, which in turn are deteriorating due to the phage. It's fairly jarring when in a later episode they compile a holographic recreation of what a healthy, uninfected Vidiian would look like: they basically look like humans, without even much Rubber-Forehead Alien going on. Their hairline is a bit taller (sort of a reverse-widow's peak), and they have a slight forehead ridge, a single line extending up from the nose to their hairline, but otherwise, like humans. The contrast lets you see just how badly the phage has ravaged their bodies (compared to if a healthy Vidiian looked like a Klingon or a Ferengi). They make the holographic recreation so they can interact with a comatose female Vidiian doctor (linking her brain to the holo-projectors). Even though her brain will die if it stays hooked up to the holo-projectors for more than a few weeks, for a time she seriously considers that living for a few weeks as a healthy person would be preferable to a long life trapped in her decaying, patchwork body. She also apologizes that the Vidiians were driven to their organ-snatching by utter desperation, until after a while many of them just stopped caring where they got the parts from.
Debut: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine
The Vorta are genetically engineered to serve as the administrative wing of the Dominion, with the Jem'Hadar serving the military role. They also function as field commanders to the Jem'Hadar, who despise them. Despite being hatched from the same Dominion-run bioreactor tanks, the two races are as similar as night and day; Vorta are frail, scheming, and made up entirely of Expendable Clones. (The reasoning being that Changelings are too paranoid to get acquainted with new attachés all the time)
- "Ass" in Ambassador: They have the half-placating, half-goading attitude of somebody who's very close to royalty. Also, they're immune to almost all forms of poison, a trait the Founders implemented into their "recipe." One can only speculate how many Vorta were bumped off before they got the hint.
- Bandwagon Technique: One of the arguments they use when trying to persuade people over to the dark side- I mean, the Dominion.
- Because You Were Nice to Me: The Vorta believe, perhaps apocryphally, that they previously existed as timid, ape-like aliens living in hollowed-out trees. Legend has it that one day, a family of Vorta hid a Changeling from an angry mob of "solids" that were pursuing it. In return, the Changeling promised that one day they would be transformed into powerful beings and placed at the head of a vast interstellar empire; the Founders kept their word by gene-sequencing the Vorta into humanoids (at the cost of dampening their senses, such as sight and smell) to be employed as their tools of conquest.
- Blessed with Suck: Vorta only have a ridiculously limited sense of taste, a feature installed in their genes to remind them of their humble origins. They generally have no appreciation for art. Combine that with an intrinsic belief in the Founders as gods, bad eyesight, and zero sex life, and the Vorta might have been happier as monkeys.
- Brain Uploading: The Changelings succeeded in being able to clone people with everything intact, including memory. Bradley Thompson (DS9 writer and co-producer on Battlestar Galactaca') hypothesized, "...they download their memories every so often into some kind of 'brain jar.' It's just like backing up a computer program. You still have what you had the previous time you backed it up. But if you had a bad disk or something like that, it's going to be a corrupted copy."
- Classy Cravat/The Dandy: The foppish eurotrash of the Gamma Quadrant, which informs their role as courtiers and diplomats.
- Vorta clothing always features a flashy Arabian pattern on the robe or undershirt, again piggybacking on the Jihadist undertones of the Founders.
- Cloning Blues: The Weyoun clone who went renegade and almost cost them the war. Weyoun 7 asides that the cloning process is rather dodgy and doesn't always work as intended; on the surface, Weyoun 6 was a perfect copy, but he lacked his progenitor's "appetite for cruelty".
- Cloning Gambit: Each Vorta has several clones on standby at all times, all of whom share their predecessor's memories. The main Vorta of the series, Weyoun, was actually the fourth one when he first appeared. He was on his eighth life when the base holding his clones was destroyed, and was finally Out of Continues when Garak shot him in the finale.
- Cyanide Pill: The termination implant; they are supposed to activate it immediately upon capture, but not all do. Apparently the Founders made them a little too devious.
- Dirty Coward: One glitch in the Vorta's programming was that their self-preservation instinct outweighed other concerns. While the Jem'Hadar are trained to commit suicide should they fail, the Vorta do not; in fact, Weyoun purposely misled the Jem'Hadar into attacking a Changeling's ship (albeit a Changeling openly cooperating with enemies of the Dominion) rather than catch heat for an intelligence breach. ("Treachery, Faith, and the Great River") Another Vorta, Keevan, willingly sought protection with Starfleet rather than face his own men, who were stranded on a barren rock due to his ineptitude and would soon figure out he had no White left to supply them.
- "You know Captain, if I'd had just two more vials of White, you never would have had a chance." a Vorta's gratitude.
- Dr. Feelgood: A Vorta and his ever-present drug suitcase. In addition to organizing troops and waiting on the Founders, a Vorta's main job is distributing ketracel-white - the drug which ensures the loyalty of the Jem'Hadar - to his particular unit. Not the safest job in the universe.
- Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette with Purple Eyes: Every Vorta we see.
- Expendable Clone: Part of the Vorta's schtick was that they were grown as clones and had the memories of their identical predecessor imprinted on them.
- Face of an Angel, Mind of a Demon: It's been observed how the ugly aliens in Star Trek are always the evil ones, whereas the humanoid aliens are treated more sympathetically. The Xindi-Reptilians are the most aggressive faction on ENT, for example, whereas the Xindi-Primates are more cautious. Now look at what DS9 did so well when presenting its antagonists. When the viewer first meets the Jem'Hadar and the Vorta, the audience's sympathy lies with the Vorta because it looks more humanoid and helpless. As the show goes on, however, the viewer realizes that the Jem'Hadar are actually more capable of honor and a degree of empathy than the Vorta are.
- Fanservice with a Smile: In "The Ship", Kilana kept calling time-outs in the midst of battle to offer refreshments to Sisko's twitchy crew.
- Fashionable Asymmetry: The standard attire for men and women, usually a tunic or jacket with a crooked collar and missing sleeve. Weyoun wears a sort of two-toned, double-breasted jacket: The right half is solid (brown or blue leather, for that extra touch of sleaze), while the left half is sleeveless and made from cloth.
- Faux Affably Evil: Vorta are jerks and relish the suffering of races who defied Dominion rule. The big smile is just a pretense.Weyoun: This is a momentous day. You and I have just taken the first step towards insuring peace between our peoples.
(smash cut to Captain's Office)
Sisko: They're going to attack.
- Food as Bribe: For some reason, when latinum and flattery doesn't work, Vorta resort to using cuisine as a bargaining tactic.
- Flaunting Your Fleets: A lone Vorta is no threat at all, but he has a swarm of Jem'Hadar ships and ground units at his disposal.
- General Failure: Their military prowess really isn't the best. The strict hierarchy of the Dominion states that a Jem'Hadar can't question the orders of any Vorta, even if they're clearly wrongheaded or cruel (such as the Vorta abandoning his entire unit to save himself). Pop quiz: Which of the two races are bred for war, and which is a colorblind wimp who won't even touch a phaser?
- Goggles Do Something Unusual: The Jem'Hadar don't include viewscreens on their ships: rather they use a headseat eyepiece (picture an alien buying his Google glasses in installments
) that allows them to observe what's going on outside the hull. There are two headsets allotted to each ship: One for the Vorta, and another for his Jem'Hadar "First." Cardassians and Bajorans are able to use them with ease, but the headsets cause humans to have splitting headaches after a while.Garak: It's like having a viewscreen inside your brain.
- Happiness in Slavery: Exemplified when Odo tells a Weyoun that Vorta and Jem'Hadar only view Changelings as gods because they're programmed to. Weyoun's response? "Of course. That's what gods do."
- Henchmen Race: They exist for no other reason than to the serve the whole, but unlike the Borg, it's a one-way street. The chain of authority doesn't care for their input. The same goes for the Jem'Hadar.
- Mind over Matter: One Vorta, Eris from "The Jem'Hadar", is shown to use telekinetic blasts. Ronald D. Moore stated that this was an ability the Founders gave to some Vorta, not an inherent trait.
- Mouth of Sauron: Every Vorta takes directions from one of the shadowy Founders, then relays them to jarheads further down the chain. Chatting with a Vorta is the closest most people will ever get to meeting the Founders.
- The Napoleon: Vorta have cooler heads than the Andorians, but on the demerit side, they tend to be quite arrogant and petty. The tallest one we see is Yelgrun, played by Iggy Pop (admittedly something of a miscasting according to Word of God).
- The Neidermeyer: Vorta are particularly callous and cruel toward their soldiers. Sometimes the Jem'Hadar get fed up and vaporize them, but more often they keep a stiff upper lip and take it.Sisko: I was on a mission with the Jem'Hadar once—before the war, of course. They were good. Tough, professional. It was an honour to serve with them. But their Vorta, (grimaces at the memory) ...he was something different.
- An Offer You Can't Refuse: The baseline bargaining tactic for enrolling new planets into the Dominion. Robert Hewitt Wolfe put it succinctly:"Hey, you're nice people, here's some M-16s and some popcorn, and whatever else you want baby, alcohol, fire-water? All you have to do is sign this little contract and we'll make you cool.' Then there's the Jem'Hadar. So the Vorta say, 'Oh, you don't want to play ball? Then meet these guys. They're gonna kick your asses."
- One-Gender Race: Despite being a genetically-engineered race that is reproduced by cloning, unlike the Jem'Hadar, Vorta actually appear in both male and female sexes. While never directly stated, it is somewhat implied that as a race of diplomats, the Founders may have kept the Vorta females around because some alien races would be more comfortable dealing with them (either pervy male-dominated societies that could be seduced by them, or female-dominated societies who would have more respect for female diplomats). It is stated that even so, the Vorta do not have sex, and there are (officially, at least) no loving relationships between male and female Vorta.
- Sycophantic Servant: In fact, this trope is the hat of the entire Vorta race. They were genetically altered to regard the Founders of the Dominion as living gods. They are well aware of this, and take it in stride. After all, doesn't the Bible say that God created man to serve Him?Weyoun: What's the point of being a god if there's no one to worship you?
- They Killed Kenny: If one Vorta gets killed, the Founders just clone him or her again.
- Trademark Favorite Food: They enjoy kava nuts and rippleberries, as they did before they were genetically engineered, but little else.
- Transhuman: They were uplifted from ape-like beings into what they are now by the Changelings. The other main Dominion race, the Jem'Hadar, are also genetically tailored by the Changelings into loyal super-soldiers; it's possible they originated from a more pacifist race.
- You Are Number 6: How else do you keep count?Damar: Clones. Keeping track of 'em's a full-time job.
- Younger Than They Look: Many Vorta, being clones, are younger than they look. Consider Weyoun, who has a propensity for getting killed (often). Many of the Weyoun clones are merely months or even weeks old when we meet them, and *some* have lifespans shorter than a year.
Debut: Star Trek: The Original Series
The original Space Elves, and Trek's most iconic alien race, famous for their strict adherence to logic and reason. They were the first extraterrestrial species to make First Contact with Humans. They offered huge assistance to a devastated post-World War III Earth, enabling the elimination of world poverty, disease and crime. Nevertheless, many humans still cannot bear their pointy ears; their arrogance; their freezer-temperature sex drives (Vulcans get freaky approximately once every seven years). Vulcans appear in all six Trek series, four of which feature a Vulcan or a half-Vulcan as a crewmember.
- After the End: Like humans, the Vulcans were once a warlike species who decimated their planet with nuclear weapons before becoming enlightened.
- Alien Sky: Vulcan's sky is (usually) red in color, and has a number of moons visible at any given time.
- Arranged Marriage: Vulcan marriages are determined at birth. If, for whatever reason, the female does not want to go through with the marriage, then the ceremony of koon-ut-kal-if-fee ("marriage or challenge") is invoked: The male fights for the right to keep his mate against a challenger of her choosing. This is a Duel to the Death.
- The Atoner: They were once a Proud Warrior Race that was probably even fiercer then Klingons or humans. Horror at the results of this made them turn to the teachings of Surak and follow the rather painful creed of the time of the show to control their violent emotions.
- And Romulans are Vulcans who did not follow Surak. Though they are not a aggressive as their ancestors either, they are a warlike, militaristic society.
- Bad Samaritan: Vulcans were concerned that we could either be powerful allies or end up like the Klingons. They banked on the latter, and sat back and watched as Florida was obliterated.
- Badass Bookworm: A Vulcan's idea of a wild night is thirteen hours of meditation followed by a seaweed TV dinner. You could probably take one of these weenies in a fight...right?Sisko: I, uh, ended up in the Infirmary with a separated shoulder, two cracked ribs and a very bruised ego.
- Binary Suns: Vulcan orbits the orange star 40 Eridani A, which has two stellar companions.
- Bizarre Alien Biology: Vulcans possess an inner eyelid, or membrane, which protects their vision from bright lights. Spock dismissed it as a redundant organ, like our appendix. This is actually not Bizarre Alien Biology as it's a perfectly natural adaptation for a people living in a desert (and in a star system with three suns).
- In addition, their hearts are located on the right side of the torso, in between the ribs and pelvis.Dr. McCoy: He's lucky that his heart is where his liver should be, or he'd be dead!
- In addition, their hearts are located on the right side of the torso, in between the ribs and pelvis.
- Cerebus Retcon: The Vulcans are always the heavies in Star Trek: Enterprise, hiding behind religious piety while secretly harboring deep-seated racist and totalitarian beliefs. Indeed, their temple on P'Jem, the most sacred of Vulcan monasteries, is where their covert surveillance apparatus is stashed. In "Twilight" (which took place in an apocalyptic future), T'Pol speculates that her government deliberately withheld technology from Earth for 100 years to leave them utterly dependent on Vulcan and unable to defend themselves. When coupled with the Vulcans' treatment of other races (including half-breeds), this paints them in an especially negative light, much like the Visitors of V who pretended to offer friendship to humans while secretly pursuing their own agenda. This was a sticking point with some fans. Yet another Author's Saving Throw was hatched by producer Manny Coto to explain why 23rd century Vulcans are so dramatically different. The aborted Season Five was planned to cover the Earth-Romulan War, possibly leading into an Enemy Mine scenario.
- Church Militant: The Syrannites are this for Vulcans. Subverted as it's revealed that instead of the radical terrorists they're portrayed as by the Vulcan High Command, they're actually be a peaceful movement who desire to return the Vulcans back to the original teachings of Surak. And they succeed.
- The Complainer Is Always Wrong: The Vulcan Science Academy spent much of Enterprise dubbing things like time-travel "impossible". This is despite the fact that their first rule of metaphysics is "nothing unreal exists".
- Death World: Vulcans are a pretty tough bunch, but given Vulcan itself, that might not be much of a surprise. The planet largely consists of deserts filled with giant bear-like creatures, the weather is volatile, the oxygen is pretty thin, and there's a good deal of active volcanoes around.
- Depending on the Writer: Much like the Time Lords in Doctor Who, the attitude of Vulcans can vary wildly. In the 23rd century, the Vulcans whom Kirk encounters are stuffy bureaucratic types, barring "Amok Time" which examines the contradictory nature of the Vulcan psyche. A few are mildly antagonistic. In Star Trek VI, Valeris conspired to kill the Klingon Chancellor and the Federation President —a twist which spawned multiple "Fix Fic" novels explaining how Valeris hadn't been 'trained' properly—without the knowledge of the Vulcan High Command. At their worst, the Vulcans in DS9 and VOY are merely condescending jerks.
- Duel to the Death: Oddly all duels we have seen never resulted in a death, guess they didn't feel like changing the name.
- E.T. Gave Us Wi-Fi: The ENT episode "Carbon Creek" implies that Velcro was given to us by stranded Vulcans.
- Fantastic Racism: Despite their devotion to logic and being one of the founding members of the Federation, this, surprisingly, is not uncommon on their approach towards a foreign species, especially Humans. This perhaps comes to show that Vulcans, while intellectually prominent, are not by any means flawless.
- Now, to be fair, Vulcans, like any other race, can be on the receiving end of this as well. Slurs like "pointy", "pointy-eared" or "green-blooded" have been used to refer to them. Some don't like the Vulcans merely because they find some of them to be uncompromising and stubborn at times and thus assume all Vulcans are like that.
- Feel No Pain: Vulcans are substantially more resilient to anything that harms or afflicts humans and other humanoids. In "Kir'Shara", Soval says this is because their mental disciplines allow them to suppress pain.
- Fluffy Tamer: Vulcans keep sehlats as pets. Sehlats are large mammals which Spock's mother refers to as "a fat teddy-bear with teeth". It looks like the combination of a bear and a set of knives. Though they might not actually be fully domesticated, given T'Pol's comments on how Vulcan children are never late with their sehlat's dinner.
- Good Is Impotent: Averted. The Romulans, having embraced war and avarice, also lost the ability to pull off mind melds or nerve pinches. Meanwhile, the Vulcans continue to try to reconcile with their Romulan kin.
- Hates Being Touched: Justified due to their telepathic abilities. And since the palm is the focal point of mind melds, it's rare for a Vulcan to even shake your hand.
- I Come in Peace: The Vulcan salute.
- Insufferable Genius: Do not argue with a Vulcan. You will lose.
- Quark in DS9 successfully out-logicked a Vulcan.
- Kryptonite Factor: Long-term exposure to trellium-D not only strips them of emotional control, it's turned them into mindlessly violent shamblers.
- Kung-Fu Jesus: Vulcan's answer to Jesus and Moses, a wise man named Surak, saved the species by devising a new philosophy based on logic. Surak concluded that the root of the problems on Vulcan lay in the uncontrolled outpouring of its peoples' emotions. Although this new ideology spread rapidly across Vulcan, a minority known as "those who march beneath the Raptor's wings" rejected Surak's message. A destructive war began including the use of atomic bombs and among the victims was Surak himself.
- Laser-Guided Karma: The Vulcans refuse to lend Humanity any aid during the Xindi Incident, even though the Earth is facing certain destruction should the Xindi attack again. With the loss of Earth, human civilization would be pushed back a few centuries, thereby keeping us off the galactic stage and out of the Vulcans' hair. The destruction of Vulcan in the new Kelvin Timeline of Star Trek (2009) could be considered severe karmic payback for this.
- Living Memory: Some Vulcans can "cheat death" by implanting their katra — essentially their memory — into another person via mind-meld ("Rememberrrr..."). Dr. Bashir in the episode "The Passenger" explains this away as "synaptic pattern displacement."
- Long-Lived: There are instances of them living over two hundred and twenty years. Spock is 157 when he goes back in time and ends up trapped in an Alternate Reality TOS-Era.note
- Mate or Die: Every seven years, Vulcan males and females experience an overpowering mating drive known as pon farr, often focused on a single object of desire (or a holographic facsimile thereof). Once triggered, Vulcans must have sexual contact with someone, or else face insanity and death.
- If a mate is not available, there are other ways to relieve the effects of the pon farr. The first is meditation; The second is violence. This is seen in the Voyager episode "Blood Fever", when B'Elanna Torres and Ensign Vorik fight in the traditional Vulcan manner. The violence ends the pon farr. The other option is extreme shock; in the TOS episode "Amok Time", Spock believed he had killed James T. Kirk, his "best friend", thus providing sufficient shock to nullify the effects of pon farr.
- Memetic Hand Gesture: The Vulcan salute, usually accompanied with the phrases "Live long and prosper and "Peace and long life." Nimoy based it on a Jewish blessing representing the Hebrew letter Shin (ש).
- A Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Read: The Vulcan Mind Meld has some limited aspects of a Mental Fusion, most notably that the exchange of thoughts through the psychic connection defaults to being two-way unless the Vulcan is adept enough to maintain full control over the meld.
- Few can handle the high-grade emotions of a Vulcan getting beamed directly into their skull. Vulcans respect this, and usually don't perform melds on an unwilling victim. Usually.
- Somebody as logic-bound as Tuvok needs a reasonable motive for Lon Suder's (a psychopath) crime. It highlights his lack of understanding of emotional behavior in that he does not consider 'I didn't like the way he looked at me' as a good enough reason. He wants to mind meld with Suder because he thinks that it will give the killer some peace in his mind, and Tuvok will gain some valuable insight on how to prevent crimes on the ship. What he fails to realize is it's a trade off: If Suder gains some of Tuvok's inner peace then of course Tuvok will be infected by Suder's inner turmoil.
- My Skull Runneth Over: Picard's decision to perform a mind meld with Sarek to conceal the Vulcan's growing senility. It's probably the riskiest thing we ever see him do. If it goes wrong there is every possibility that he could be afflicted by the same mental illness. He admits to feelings of apprehension about the process but even he couldn't predict the outpouring of such a forceful regrets and feelings that would nuke his mind. It's uncomfortable to watch and reveals many of Sarek's inner demons to the audience. Picard nearly has a stroke from the wild flux of emotions: sinister, giddy, sleazy, and bitter all in the span of a minute or two. He had to endure that for hours. Patick Stewart got a migraine from filming this scene.
- Neat Freak: Vulcans do not like to touch their food with their hands, preferring to use utensils whenever possible. Even if it's a breadstick.
- Nerves of Steel: Vulcans are chill dudes. According to McCoy, Spock (and presumably all Vulcans) have almost no blood pressure. With an average body temperature of 91°F, they don't even need to sweat. ("That green ice water you call blood!")
- No Sense of Humor: Vulcans are renowned for this, though many of them are Deadpan Snarkers instead.
- They would arguably be the most deadpan of snarkers, ever.
- The Paralyzer: Vulcan Nerve Pinch. This is not a canonical name for the attack, but the writers on VOY finally caved and had Tom refer to it by that name.
- This move is not, in fact, exclusive to Vulcans only; at least one non-Vulcan character per show has mastered it, usually the replacement Spock (Data, Odo, Seven of Nine). Picard also acquired the ability after mind-melding with Sarek.
- Passion Is Evil: Vulcans need to keep their emotions in check, or else they risk turning into raving lunatics.
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Vulcan marriages are arranged at birth and for the most part tend to have quite happy marriages, though they will break off the marriage if it isn't.
- Rage Breaking Point: Vulcans have to live with this trope, due to their culture of logic over emotion. They spend years training to keep them in check, but when anything breaks that control down, Vulcans can become as violent as their ancestors were.
- Screw You, Elves!: The only loveable Vulcans in Star Trek are the ones already affiliated with Starfleet or other organizations within the Federation. Native Vulcans are brusk, speciesist, and rather uncooperative in their relations with other races. They barely mask their low regard for the illogical aliens they begrudgingly work with. Vulcans also discriminate against those who marry outside of the race.
- Single-Biome Planet: Vulcan is almost entirely arid, although Star Trek: Discovery sometimes subverts this by depicting lush vegetation on the surface.
- The Smart Guy: Of the Alien races. Mathematically and scientifically proficient.
- The Spock: Trope Namers, makers, and codifiers.
- Spock Speak: Vulcans speak in a low, dull monotone and generally avoid using contractions.
- Strange Salute: The Vulcan greeting is holding the hand up straight and spreading the fingers out, but keeping the index and middle finger touching, and the same with the ring finger and pinky.
- Sugar-and-Ice Personality: A solid Type 2. Just because they're governed by logic doesn't mean they are a hive mind. A Vulcan can 'reason' themselves all the way into, for example, committing treason (Star Trek VI) or running guns for Maquis settlers (DS9: "The Maquis"), if it seems logical to do so.Gul Dukat: You believe her? Why? Because Vulcans don't lie?Sisko: As a rule, they don't.Gul Dukat: They don't blow up ships either, "as a rule."
- Super Strength: Vulcans are about three times as strong as an average human, owing to Vulcan's higher gravity — though a phaser blast will still take one out easily.
- The Teetotaler: For obvious reasons, Vulcans are said not to drink alcohol. Though they are depicted indulging for ceremonial rituals or when the storyline warrants. In the Star Trek: Voyager episode "Repression", Humans and Vulcans are shown drinking a Vulcan alcoholic drink called "Vulcan Brandy". A Vulcan's constitution is probably immune to our comparatively weak alcohol.Spock: My father's race was spared the dubious benefits of alcohol.
McCoy: Now I know why they were conquered.
- Took a Level in Jerkass: In the prequel series Enterprise, the Vulcans are presented as quasi-antagonists for the first three seasons, foiling Earth's attempts to explore the Quadrant. Season Four revealed a militaristic sect had taken over and was colluding with Romulus to conquer Vulcan.
- Touch Telepathy: The famous Vulcan Mind Meld, which is so well known in popular culture that the term is often used to describe Touch Telepathy generally. Some Vulcans with very advanced skill can use telepathy without touch, but this often requires great effort or that the target also be telepathic.
- Unusual Ears: The distinct Pointy Ears of Vulcans are often lampshaded by bob-earred humans.Soval: What is their fixation with our ears?T'Pol: I believe they are envious.
- Veganopia: Of course, there are plants, and then there are Vulcan plants. In a Star Trek novel set on Spock's homeworld, the characters are attacked by a mobile, shrieking, carnivorous plant native to the region ... and after it's been phasered to death, Spock eats some of it.
- One of the early TOS novels postulated that Vulcans were vegetarians partly because the herbivores previously used as meat died off during Surak's time.
- The most common reason given for their vegetarianism is the same one that led them to pacifism. They are such a violent and destructive race that they have to go to extreme lengths to not destroy themselves/conquer the universe/destroy the universe. This includes eating spinach, rather than sating their bloodlust with meat.
- However, it's mentioned that the Rite of Ta'loth involves young Vulcans being sent into the desert armed only with a ritual blade, implying that when push comes to shove, they will meat in order to survive. Unless these deserts are commonly populated with aforementioned Man-Eating Plant, of course.
- Will Not Tell a Lie: Vulcans have a reputation for being truthful, both in and out of universe, but this is rarely the case. It's more that they don't lie unnecessarily; if they do find it necessary to do so they are perfectly capable of doing so, and are quite good at it, even when not employing Double Speak and From a Certain Point of View.
Debut: Star Trek: Enterprise
Homeworld: None (originally Xindus)
A unique race from the Delphic Expanse consisting of five distinct sub-species: primates, arboreals, reptilians, insectoids, and aquatics. A sixth species, the avians, went extinct during the destruction of their shared homeworld in the 2030s.
- Artistic License Biology: Of the "You fail biology forever" variety. There are six Xindi races, all of which evolved on the same planet. They are directly stated to be "about as genetically different as humans and Neanderthals"...two of the races are one human-like one, and one humanoid sloth-like race. On some outside chance, primates and sloths are loosely related given that they are mammals. The next is an aquatic dolphin/seal-like race. Okay, maybe an aquatic ape adapted to living in the sea. The Xindi-Avians went extinct in the war that destroyed their homeworld so we never got to see one (a giraffe-skull was used to represent their skull). But...the Xindi-Reptilians are blatantly lizard-men, yet are still "about as different from the Xindi-Humanoids and Xindi-Arboreals (Sloths) as humans and Neanderthals"? The point when you'll stand up shouting at your TV is that one of the Xindi subspecies are the Xindi-Insectoids. Yes, vaguely humanoid insects. Vertebrates and Arthropods are not that closely related!
- It should be noted however that the humans and neanderthals thing was consider a good analogy by Phlox, he never stated it was 100 accurate one.
- Beauty Equals Goodness: More or less. The Primate and Arboreal Xindi (the two closest to humans) are the ones who take Archer's side, while the Reptilians and Insectoids (definitely not human-like) continue the campaign to destroy Earth. The Aquatics come closest to inverting this trope, as they're not humanoid but keep the coolest heads and eventually join Archer.
- Beware the Nice Ones: The Xindi Primates are seen as the most honest and trustworthy Xindi species. It was a Primate scientist who designed the planet-destroying weapons intended for Earth.
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: The Insectoids are giant ants.
- Earth-Shattering Kaboom: Their century-long civil war ended when the Reptilians and Insectoids, who were losing, set off explosions in Xindus' fault lines that shattered the planet.
- Hot-Blooded: The Reptilians are perpetually grouchy, making even the most bad-tempered Klingon look mellow.
- Jerkass: The reptilians, to a man... er, lizard. An old arboreal saying claims that arguing with them is like arguing with the sun - you accomplish nothing and come away burned.
- Made of Iron: Reptillians can shrug off the stun setting of phasers.
- Not-So-Omniscient Council of Bickering: And how. Even when united in wanting to wipe out Humanity, they simply cannot stop arguing. First it was about what methods, form and delivery the attack should take, then after they fixed on the Planet Killer design, they began arguing about when and how it should be deployed.
- Space Nomads: The survivors of their homeworld's destruction wander the Delphic Expanse, occassionally setting up shop on various planets for a time but lacking a true world to call their own.
- Token Evil Teammate: The Reptilians are the most outright aggressive of all the Xindi species, and are typically the ones leading the charge when it comes to attacking humanity. Following them are the Insectoids, who are responsible for the destruction of their homeworld, and tend to work with the Reptilians (until the Reptilians get so extreme that even the Insectoids have second thoughts).
- The Unintelligible: The Insectoids and the Aquatics don't speak the same language as everyone else, the Insectoids in clicks and hisses, the Aquatics in whale-song like noises (though the Aquatics do learn to speak English via translator).
- Well-Intentioned Extremist: The Xindi were tricked into believing that humanity would wipe them out in a few centuries, hence their attempts to exterminate us.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: One of Earth's most prominent enemies from its early days of exploration, and is never heard from again past the 22nd century (outside of the Star Trek Expanded Universe and Star Trek Beyond, anyway). According to Daniels, they do join The Federation at some point prior to the 26th century.
- Why Did It Have to Be Snakes?: Arboreal Xindi don't like water. Reptilians dislike heights.