Trek babes

Dr Crusher, Deanna Troi, Kes, Janeway, Kira Nerys, Jadzia Dax

Who says the world of SF is purely a male domain? We check out the hot stuff in our favourite TV franchise of all time...

Feature By Ian Atkins, selected from the latest Trek-themed
Starburst Special #45

Over the last 35 years, Star Trek has been none too hot on the presentation of its female characters. From the predominantly male command staff of the original series, to at last having a strong female character in Voyager, only to emphasize her chest in a way Kenny Everett’s Cupid Stunt would have been ashamed of (“when suddenly, all my implants fall off!”), it’s a question of: Star Trek women: exploited or exploiting? Who exactly is boldly going, and who’s meekly shuffling along trying to protect their modesty?

We thought it was about time we found out, and sent an intrepid reporter into the future to report back. Because we can do that sort of thing.

ASSESSED IN THIS STARBURST SPECIAL:

Yeoman Janice Rand • Lt Saavik • Lt Uhura • Dr Gillian Taylor • Tasha Yar • Deanna Troi • Ishara Yar • Lwaxana Troi • Valeris • Vash • Lt Jadzia Dax • Kira Nerys & Mirror Universe Kira • Borg Queen • Lursa & B’Etor • Ensign Ro Laren • Captain Kathryn Janeway • Kes • Lt B’Elanna Torres • Seska • Seven of Nine

BELOW: JUST THREE OF THE 20 ASSESSMENTS IN THIS (semi-serious) COVER FEATURE!

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Lt Uhura
Nichelle Nichols, Star Trek

Uhura

Warp Factor Rating: 6/10
(-10 for that scene in Final Frontier: you know the one we mean: frankly only Scotty belly-dancing would have put us off jelly more).

What’s She Like?
Remember Rosemary the Telephone Operator? Well like her, only with a silver Ferrero Roché stuck to her ear..

Is She Actually Sexy?
The first regular Trek babe, Uhura opened a channel into many a young man’s psyche.

Where No Man Has Gone Before?
Not only a strong female character, but such a good example to African Americans of the 1960s that Martin Luther King urged Nichols to stay on when she was considering leaving after the first series.

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Borg Queen
Alice Krige, Star Trek 8

Borg Queen

Warp Factor Rating: 7/10
(add 3 if you’re the manager of a Texas Homecare)

What’s She Like?
Slinky, witty, fascinating, and wants to rule the entire universe plus any sub-ones she can find on the way. Has a very interesting way of getting ready to go out.

Is She Actually Sexy?
Yes, if your idea of sexy is a dead-fleshed woman in skin-tight rubber with a spanner sticking out of her head. In which case you’re presumably either wanted by the police, or banned from every garage in South London.

Where No Man Has Gone Before?
In her defence, the Borg Queen manages to make having your limbs replaced with Mechano sound like a sensual experience, but what do you expect from a woman who’s one part babe, one part biotechnical lifeform, and one part Magimix?

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Seven of Nine
Jeri Ryan, Voyager

Seven of Nine

Warp Factor Rating: 11/10
(and we don’t care if this does rip the fabric of the universe apart).

What’s She Like?
Gorgeous. Rescued from the Borg Collective, Anneka Hansen is eager to reclaim her humanity. Which makes her continual use of the Seven of Nine name, plugging herself into the ship’s light sockets, and wearing a tight catsuit just a tad conspicuous.

Is She Actually Sexy?
Is the Pope a Catholic? Do bears leave the woods a little lighter than they entered it? Does Chakotay like cakes? Any red-blooded male who can watch Seven’s first few episodes and not want to unwrap this foil-clad cheesecake is clinically dead. In years to come, this will be the test they use in hospitals: forget breathing on mirrors, or ECG machines. It’ll be the last 10 minutes of The Gift and if there’s no pulse, then the only plot you’ll be watching will be six-foot deep.

Where No Man Has Gone Before?
After all the testosterone swilling about here as soon as Jeri Ryan’s name gets mentioned, we should point out that with the Borg On Board, Trek has come full-circle. In the mid-1960s, the female characters were ornamental, half-dressed, and there to get the dads watching. And how far have we come, 35 years later? A statuesque blonde painted in a variety of colours. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. We suspect this says more about Mankind than Gene Roddenberry ever actually intended.

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