Ranking the Star Trek Characters


Between the five television series of Star Treks, quite a number of characters were either in a starring role or a recurring role (three or more episodes of appearance).

Everyone would rank those characters, from Favorite to Least Favorite, in a different order. Here is my list.

FAVORITES

These characters were simply fun to watch whenever they appeared. They enhanced the shows in which they were in.
  1. Jean Luc Picard   [TNG-regular,DS9]
  2. Wesley Crusher   [TNG-regular]
  3. Cmdr. Data   [TNG-regular]
  4. Q   [TNG,DS9,VOY]
  5. Elim Garak   [DS9]
  6. Mora Pol *   [DS9]
  7. Guinan   [TNG]
  8. Worf   [TNG-regular,DS9-regular]
  9. Nog   [DS9]
  10. Quark   [DS9,TNG-regular,VOY]
  11. Boothby   [TNG]
  12. Chakotay   [VOY-regular]
  13. James Kirk   [TOS-regular]
  14. Ben Sisko   [DS9-regular]
  15. Jordi LaForge   [TNG-regular]
  16. Gowron   [TNG,DS9]
  17. Reg Barclay   [TNG,VOY]
  18. Dukat   [DS9]
  19. Time Traveler   [TNG]
  20. Ro Laren   [TNG]
  21. Doc Phlox   [ENT-regular]
  22. Sarek   [TOS,TNG]
  23. K'Ehlyer *   [TNG]
  24. Kurn   [TNG,DS9]

* The two characters with an asterisk are in the list because the actor played a number of interesting/important Star Trek characters although none of their characters appeared in more than two episodes. James Sloyan is my #1 favorite actor, period. He played characters in TNG, DS9 and VOY. Suzie Plakson played K'Ehlyer so well plus she played three other characters in Next Generation, Voyager and Enterprise.

INTERESTING

These characters added to the episodes in which they appeared.
  1. Miles O'Brien   [TNG,DS9-regular]
  2. Odo   [DS9-regular]
  3. Spock   [TOS-regular,TNG]
  4. Travis Mayweather   [ENT-regular]
  5. Doc Bashir   [DS9-regular,TNG]
  6. Harry Kim   [VOY-regular]
  7. Nellix   [VOY-regular]
  8. Jake Sisko   [DS9-regular]
  9. Montgomery Scott   [TOS-regular,TNG]
  10. Tom Paris   [VOY-regular]
  11. Rom   [DS9]
  12. Jadzia Dax   [DS9-regular]
  13. Thy'lek Shran   [ENT]
  14. K'mpec   [TNG]
  15. General Martok   [DS9]
  16. Vic Fontaine   [DS9]
  17. Malcolm Reed   [ENT-regular]
  18. Joseph Sisko   [DS9]
  19. Jonathan Archer   [ENT-regular]
  20. Tuvok   [VOY-regular]
  21. Michael Eddington   [DS9]
  22. Kes   [VOY-regular]
  23. Kate Janeway   [VOY-regular]
  24. Alexander Rozhenko   [TNG]
  25. Helena Rozhenko   [TNG]
  26. Sergey Rozhenko   [TNG]
  27. Morn   [DS9,TNG,VOY]
  28. Enabran Tain   [DS9]
  29. Zefram Cochrane   [TOS,ENT]
  30. Tora Ziyal   [DS9]
  31. Cmdr. Tomalak   [TNG]
  32. Alyssa Ogawa   [TNG]
  33. Gul Evek   [TNG,DS9,VOY]
  34. Opaka Sulan   [DS9]
  35. Alynna Nechayev   [TNG,DS9]

UNINTERESTING

These characters made little positive impact when they appeared, or, the character was a minor role and/or just never became fully developed.
  1. Noonien Soong   [TNG]
  2. William Riker   [TNG-regular,DS9 but great director]
  3. Damar   [DS9]
  4. Kor   [TOS,DS9]
  5. Weyoun   [DS9]
  6. Maihar'du   [DS9]
  7. B'Elanna Torres   [VOY-regular]
  8. Beverly Crusher   [TNG-regular]
  9. Hoshi Sato   [ENT-regular]
  10. Deanna Troi   [TNG-regular,VOY]
  11. Soval   [ENT]
  12. Jack Crusher   [TNG]
  13. Leonard McCoy   [TOS-regular,TNG]
  14. Vash   [TNG]
  15. Leeta   [DS9]
  16. Trip Tucker   [ENT-regular]
  17. Naomi Wildman   [VOY]
  18. Samantha Wildman   [VOY]
  19. Vorik   [VOY,TNG]
  20. Icheb   [VOY]
  21. Mr. Homn   [TNG,DS9]
  22. Hugh   [TNG]
  23. Seven of Nine   [VOY-regular]
  24. Ezri Dax   [DS9]
  25. Christine Chapel   [TOS]
  26. Hikaru Sulu   [TOS-regular]
  27. Pavel Chekov   [TOS-regular]
  28. Nyota Uhura   [TOS-regular]
  29. Talas   [ENT]
  30. William Ross   [DS9]
  31. Maxwell Forrest   [ENT]
  32. Kang   [TOS,DS9,VOY]
  33. Shakaar Edon   [DS9]
  34. Owen Paris   [VOY]
  35. Future Guy   [ENT]
  36. Vice Admiral Nakamura   [TNG]
  37. Ensign Hadley   [TOS]
  38. Elizabeth Cutler   [ENT]
  39. Kimara Cretak   [DS9]
  40. Security Officer (played by Dexter Clay, 29 episodes)   [TNG]
  41. Mila   [DS9]
  42. Ensign Felton   [TNG]
  43. Rebi   [VOY]
  44. Mezoti   [VOY]
  45. Azan   [VOY]
  46. Daniels   [ENT]
  47. Ayala   [VOY]
  48. J. Hayes   [ENT]
  49. Erika Hernandez   [ENT]
  50. Cmdr. Williams   [ENT]
  51. Ensign Tess Allenby   [TNG]
  52. Ensign McKnight   [TNG]
  53. Ensign Gates   [TNG]
  54. Lt. DeSalle   [TOS]
  55. Lt. Brent   [TOS]
  56. Lt. John Farrell    [TOS]
  57. Lt. Galloway   [TOS]
  58. Lt. Kelowitz   [TOS]
  59. Lt. Kyle   [TOS]
  60. Roger Lemli   [TOS]
  61. Lt. Leslie   [TOS]
  62. Ensign Bennett   [TNG]
  63. Lt. Diana Giddings   [TNG]
  64. Lt. Darien Wallace   [TNG]
  65. Wright (male nurse)   [TNG]
  66. Ensign Youngblood   [TNG]
  67. Broik   [TNG,DS9,VOY]
  68. M'Pella   [DS9]
  69. Lt. Joseph Carey   [VOY]
  70. Ensign Hogan   [VOY]
  71. Kashimuro Nozawa   [VOY]
  72. Timothy Lang   [VOY]
  73. Corporal Chang   [ENT]
  74. Corporal F. Hawkins   [ENT]
  75. Cmdr. Kelby   [ENT]
  76. Koss    [ENT]
  77. R. Richards    [ENT]
  78. Michael Rostov   [ENT]
  79. R. Ryan   [ENT]
  80. V'Las   [ENT]
  81. W. Woods   [ENT]

DISLIKE

These characters make me grateful for fast-forward.
  1. Gul Rusot   [DS9]
  2. T'Pau   [TOS]
  3. Janice Rand   [TOS]
  4. Luther Sloan   [DS9]
  5. Brunt   [DS9]
  6. Rionoj   [DS9]
  7. Jal Culluh   [VOY]
  8. Female Shapeshifter   [DS9]
  9. T'Pol   [ENT-regular]
  10. The Doctor   [VOY-regular]
  11. Natasha Yar   [TNG-regular]
  12. Sela   [TNG]
  13. Lursa   [TNG,DS9]
  14. B'Etor   [TNG,DS9]
  15. Dolim   [ENT]
  16. Arik Soong   [ENT]
  17. Angela Martine   [TOS]
  18. Degra   [ENT]
  19. Michael Jonas   [VOY]
  20. Bariel Antos   [DS9]
  21. Kira Nerys   [DS9-regular]
  22. Zek   [DS9]
  23. Ishka Moogie   [DS9]
  24. Jannar   [ENT]
  25. Silik   [ENT]
  26. Kasidy Yates   [DS9]
  27. Keiko O'Brien   [TNG,DS9]
  28. Lore   [TNG]
  29. Sarah Sisko   [DS9]
  30. Seska   [VOY]
  31. Harry Mudd   [TOS]
  32. Xindi   [ENT]
  33. Viidians   [VOY]
  34. Borg   [TNG,VOY]
  35. Lwaxana Troi   [TNG,DS9]
  36. Borg Queen   [VOY]
  37. Winn Adami   [DS9]
  38. Katherine Pulaski   [TNG-regular]




Ranking the Series

  1. TNG (Star Trek: The Next Generation, 1987-1994) - Best acting and by far the most 'Best' episodes but they had quite a number of really bad episodes too
  2. DS9 (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, 1993-1999) - Excellent acting by the guest actors, good stories although the arcs got old
  3. TOS (Star Trek: The Original Series, 1966-1969) - Started it all, Kirk remains bigger than life, half a century later they are often quoted
  4. VOY (Star Trek: Voyager, 1995-2001) - Few really bad stories but almost no really good stories either; too little to work with being stuck so far from the rest of Starfleet
  5. ENT (Enterprise, 2001-2005) - This series had better potential than any other series but fellow watchers agreed that watching paint dry was more fun than watching this series, the arcs killed the show, but, at least they explained why Kirk's Klingons looked that way



Ranking the Best Episodes of Each Television Series

These were the episodes per series that were "extra good". They are worth watching over and over and over, and remain great. They were the best due to the acting, the story or just plain fun.

The Original Series [TOS]

  1. Trouble with Tribbles [TOS #045 FUN] The #1 most fun episode of all Star Trek series. "...and second, close that door!".
  2. A Piece of the Action [TOS #047 FUN] Spock having to ad lib as a gangster. Fizzbin was explained, we still play it often
  3. Balance of Terror [TOS #015 STORY] Kirk's cool head for command with a gift for outwitting an opponent, we first meet the future 'Sarek'
  4. Tomorrow Is Yesterday [TOS #020 FUN] The stories of going back in time are usually fun. I enjoyed how the jet pilot so quickly fit into his new 'life' among the Enterprise crew, and, he got to learn he will have a son.
  5. The Ultimate Computer [TOS #054 ACTING] The computer inventor is a wonderful actor, the Daystrom Institute meets its namesake
  6. Let That Be Your Last Battlefield [TOS #071 STORY] We find out what a great actor Frank 'Riddler' Gorshin really is, story was good


The Next Generation [TNG]

  1. Inner Light [TNG #125 ACTING,STORY] Absolute finest episode I have ever seen on any television series, period. EXCELLENT story well told. And the ending..WOW
  2. Tapestry [TNG #141 ACTING] We learn about young Picard and how he became the person that is the Captain. I memorized Q's speech to Picard near the end.
  3. Family [TNG #078 ACTING] We see a different side of Picard and Worf. Only TNG episode where the Enterprise bridge was not shown
  4. Loud as a Whisper [TNG #032 ACTING] The diplomat had such a stage presence. Data had me believing that Riva was speaking. "Thank you. Ah. Thank me".
  5. Darmok [TNG #102 ACTING] What great acting and a clever storyline. "Great shooting" Riker says. "Shakah, when the walls fell".
  6. Rascals [TNG #133 FUN] Those four kids really had me believing that they were who they were supposed to be. Amazing. Fun.
  7. The Measure of a Man [TNG #035 STORY] Excellent story. Data finally becomes sentient. Very well acted by all.
  8. The Bonding [TNG #053 STORY] Michael Dorn made Worf such an important part of Star Trek. This was one of his finer moments.
  9. Final Mission [TNG #083 STORY] Wesley is my second favorite of all Star Trek characters so this episode was bittersweet. Fun to see him figure out how to get the water. He and Picard bonded.
  10. Lower Decks [TNG #167 STORY] Fun to watch the contrast and comparisons of the two levels of officers. We see most of those young officers in other episodes. Great acting.
  11. The Defector [TNG #058 ACTING] James Sloyan is my #1 favorite actor and this was his first of several appearances in three Star Trek series.
  12. The Enemy [TNG #055 ACTING] We get to learn much about Jordi. His Romulan counterpart starred in another TNG episode. So cool how Jordi knew that the signaling device was Wesley's idea.
  13. All Good Things [TNG #177-178 STORY] Put Picard and Q together and things usually are fun and interesting.
  14. Half a Life [TNG #096 ACTING] Playing opposite David Odgen Stiers, this was the only time I could actually tolerate Lwaxana. Great story.
  15. Journey's End [TNG #172 STORY] Another milestone in the life of my second favorite Star Trek character, Wesley. The Traveler is always good.
  16. Thine Own Self [TNG #168, STORY] Very well told story, it was fun to see Data bring some new ideas to that society, and, make a little friend.
  17. The Perfect Mate [TNG #121 STORY] First time I ever saw Famke Janssen. She played that role so incredibly well. The bond she and Picard formed was amazing to see.
  18. The Best of Both Worlds [TNG #074-075, STORY] Okay, okay. I know this is the #1 favorite episode of a large number of TNG fans. But it was more action than acting or story. Still, it was entertaining. Favorite scene was near the end when Shelby tells Riker she would be proud to serve with him anytime.
  19. Elementary, Dear Data [TNG #029, ACTING] Fun to watch Data in such a role. The acting by Daniel Davis made this episode.
  20. A Fistful of Datas [TNG #134 FUN] Come on. How could this be anything less than BIG FUN to see the TNG characters in the Old West.
  21. Reunion [TNG #081, STORY,ACTING] The Klingons in TNG add much to the series. Worf, Kurn, K'ehlyer and K'mpec all played their roles so well. Plus, this puts Picard into the core of the Klingon society and his respect for Worf rises.
  22. Skin of Evil [TNG #022 ENDING] The story was okay but that final scene of Yar's farewell brings a tear to my eye every time I see it. Truly one of the best scenes I have ever watched, anywhere, anytime.
  23. 11001001 [TNG #016 STORY] Interesting story. Minuet was such an amazing character here. And Wesley got his only time to be in command of the Enterprise bridge.
  24. Sarek [TNG #071 ACTING] Mark Lenard always did such a great job playing Sarek in two series. It was fun to get to see some of the main characters arguing with each other, something we normally do not get to see. But the best part was Patrick Stewart as Picard running through the onslaught of Sarek's emotions after their mind-meld.

Deep Space Nine [DS9]

  1. Duet [DS9 #019 ACTING] Harris Yulin did a fantastic job of acting that made this episode the best of DS9. Excellent.
  2. The Visitor [DS9 #075 ACTING] What an outstanding story. And again, the guest actors did such a wonderful job. Tony Todd was amazing in his roles. And, it is so fun to know that Nog will make captain someday.
  3. Trials and Tribble-ations [DS9 #104 FUN] A 'remake' of the original episode that was the most fun of all Star Trek episodes. The photography tricks made this episode, so hats off to those behind-the-scenes wizards.
  4. Explorers [DS9 #068 STORY] Loved this father and son story. Dukat even gave the Sisko's a fireworks show.
  5. Little Green Men [DS9 #080 FUN] It is so good to know the 'real' story behind the Roswell mystery. Thanks for clearing it up for us.
  6. The Way of the Warrior [DS9 #073-074 STORY] Worf is one of the most imporant characters in all of Star Trek. It was great to see him come to DS9 and added much to the series.
  7. The Alternate [DS9 #032 STORY] A very good story that again featured my all-time favorite actor, so how could this episode be anything less than great.
  8. Take Me Out to the Holosuite [DS9 #154 FUN] This reminded me of another fun episode, the softball game on the show 'WKRP in Cincinnati'. Only, in this episode, some actors had to wear alien makeup. Pure fun.
  9. Captive Pursuit [DS9 #006 STORY] A good story in which it was fun to see a creature so alien to our culture form a friendship with O'Brien.
  10. Past Tense [DS9 #057-058 STORY] An important social story to tell of what might some day actually come to past. Drama played well here.
  11. The Ascent [DS9 #107 STORY] Quark and Odo had an odd friendship and a mutual respect for each others' skills and talents. This story shone a spotlight on their relationship.
  12. Heart of Stone [DS9 #060 ACTING] Twomain story lines here. The one of Odo and Kira was boring. But the other story: Nog attempts to convince Sisko to sponsor him to Starfleet Academy (Aron Eisenberg did an amazing piece of acting in the only time he ever got a big scene -- "I have my father's hands and my uncle's tenacity. I know I have something to offer. I just need the chance to prove it.". Wow!). It was thanks to this episode, and future stories concerning Nog, that made him one of my Top Ten favorite Star Trek characters.
  13. Defiant [DS9 #055 STORY] Jonathan Frakes as, initially, Cmdr. Will Riker and later as Lt. Tom Riker, hijacks the Defiant to attack a Cardassian shipyard in the name of the Marquis. It was fun watching Sisko and Dukat working together to stop the Defiant.


Voyager [VOY]

  1. Jetrel [VOY #015 ACTING] Yet another episode with my #1 favorite actor as the star guest actor. The scenes of, and emotions conveyed between, he and Nellix were fantastic.
  2. 37's [VOY #017 STORY] Just like DS9 cleared up the Roswell mystery, this episode finally tells us what happened to Amelia Earhart. Also, I got a sore jaw from it dropping upon seeing the character identified as 'Karyn Berlin'.
  3. Homestead [VOY #169 STORY] This story pays tribute to all that Neelix has contributed to the Voyager crew. I love the ceremony when someone that is very much respected leaves the ship and the crew lines the hallways as the person walks to the shuttle area or transporter room. To top it off, Tuvok gives Neelix the ultimate tribute the Vulcan can give, a small yet poignant dance step. Pretty cool.
  4. One Small Step [VOY #128 STORY] A tribute to the first brave astronauts who lead mankind into space. It was fun to see the reactions of Chakotay and Paris plus the appreciation that Seven gained from the experience (and I loved her ending line: "Yankees in six" which was in response to the recorded message of the early astronaut saying his one regret was not hearing who won the World Series of 2032, it made Paris smile).
  5. Caretaker [VOY #001-002 STORY] An excellent series opener. Unfortunately, this was about as good as it got for this series. Mostly downhill from here with the best episodes all being in the first season.
  6. Blink of an Eye [VOY #132 STORY] The stories where the crew meet someone totally out of their time are usually fun and touching. This episode lived up to that. They make me want to see the sequel or follow up years later.


Enterprise [ENT]

  1. Broken Bow [ENT #001 STORY] After seeing this series opener, I thought the series was going to be a great new addition to the Star Trek franchise. Unfortunately, only one person wrote another even semi-good episode for this series. Thus, cancelled before the seven years were up. Arcs just get very old after a few episodes unless they are really, really good.
  2. Carbon Creek [ENT #027 STORY] Interestingly, this was a very well told story (like TNG's 'Inner Light') that did not have any of the series regulars as a part of the story. What does that say about this series?



Ranking the Movies

  1. The Wrath of Khan [1982] This is the Star Trek movie from which all others are judged. Ricardo Montalban is the only reason this movie is the best of the Star Trek movies. And that opinion seems to be widespread. People do not give him enough acting credit. For an example, see the opener for the television series "How the West Was Won" where he played the Chief.
  2. The Voyage Home [1986] aka. 'Save the Whales'. It is always fun to watch this crew go back in time. They even encountered their naval counterpart, 'Enterprise'.
  3. Evolutions [2009] Very interesting to see the oh so familiar characters played by their new actors. All but Kirk and Uhura were very believable. As with most movies made in the past twenty years or so, more emphasis is placed on 'action' rather than 'acting' and 'story'. But, it was fun to see the new actors.
  4. The Search for Spock [1984] We knew Spock would somehow return from the dead. Got to see Kirk's son and learn about how Kirk hates to lose.
  5. Generations [1994] How much better can you get than Kirk and Picard working together. Knowing Shatner's fondness for riding and showing horses, those were fun scenes. Making his horse step sideways is a difficult maneuver for a horse.
  6. First Contact [1996] Learning about 'The Rest of the Story' of how Cochrane made the first warp engine (and Why!) was good (although Riker and Jordi should not have historically been a part of that first ride). But we had to put up with the Borg yet one more time. Yawn. And getting Picard to see what he was leading his ship and crew into was more of the duties of Guinan rather than a 21st century resident.
  7. Into Darkness [2013] I am still trying to get used to the new actors playing familiar roles. Most are believable except Kirk and Uhura. This movie was waaayyy too much action and hardly any dialogue. And most of that was one-liners (e.g. "You have the bridge. Steady as she goes. Open the door. Duck."). Paramount altered the movie to appeal to European audiences who prefer action. So this movie was mostly chases and explosions..
  8. The Undiscovered Country [1991] Although stories involving Klingons are usually worth watching, this one bordered on boring. But this was better than the remaining movies.
  9. Star Trek: The Motion Picture [1979] Finally, we get the Enterprise crew back in action. While the story was only so-so, it was good to be 'home' again in the Star Trek world.
  10. Nemesis [2002] This was only mildly entertaining. Some action scenes helped keep it ranked above the remaining movies.
  11. Insurrection [1998] While the inhabitants of the planet were somewhat interesting (with yet another Picard love interest), the rest of the story was unworthy. Yet one more Starfleet admiral goes bad (unbelievable how many of them do, so it is good that Kirk was demoted back to Captain and Picard never got that promotion, but, oops, Janeway did).
  12. Beyond [2016] Of all the Star Trek series episodes and movies, this was the first that I did not see at the theater or in its original first season. Glad that was the case when I got the DVD because that gave me a chance to fast forward through much of it. Boring. The usual mostly action and special effects. Sigh! I miss the old days when movies had much dialog and character building and drama based on relationships instead of being attacked by the bad guys.
  13. The Final Frontier [1989] I hope nothing in Star Trek ever sinks this low. This is about as bad as it can get.






Copyright © by Larry Wilson, all rights reserved