Star Trek: 10 Things You Never Knew About Chakotay

He was Star Trek: Voyager's leading Maquis-turned-Officer, but how well do we really know Chakotay?

Chakotay Pips
Paramount

Chakotay was a first in many ways for Star Trek. He was an officer who had left the service, only to return when the situation demands. He was to have touched the lives of many regular names and faces, and also serve as an ambassador for Native American people in the franchise. The genesis of his character is both fascinating, and riddled with issues.

Originally introduced, albeit not by name (or appearance) in Star Trek: The Next Generation, Chakotay was one of the main characters in Voyager for its first few seasons, before settling into more of a supporting role once season four dawned. Robert Beltran, who played him, has never been shy in airing his opinions on Chakotay's journey, or lack thereof.

However, with both the actor and character confirmed as returning in a recurring role for Star Trek: Prodigy, now is the time to revisit not only the genesis of Starfleet and the Maquis' #1 in the Delta Quadrant, but also where the character ended up by the time that Star Trek: Voyager came to a close. What's next for the man who made the term Acoochimoya famous?

10. He Was The First

Chakotay Pips
CBS

The character who became Chakotay was one of the first sketched ideas for the then-unnamed Star Trek: Voyager. He was inspired by the positive response to the character of Uhura in the Original Series and more specifically the positive representation for African-American people that came with the character.

'Chakotay' was to serve in this same role for Native American people, though it took quite a while to settle on exactly how best to depict him. Initially, the Tribe from which he originated wasn't chosen, and he was a far more 'mystical' man. He was also written to have a prior connection with Captain Janeway.

That element was dropped, as was much of his mysticism. The character bible switched the word 'mystic' to 'complex' instead. It also changed another aspect, namely in that it hadn't been him specifically that chose to abandon Earth, but his people as a whole. That way, his return to Starfleet was, for a time, a means of differentiating himself from his Tribe.

The writers settled on Chakotay's people being descendants of the Rubber Tree People, which was later explored in the episode Tattoo.

In this post: 
Star Trek
 
Posted On: 
Contributor
Contributor

Writer. Reader. Podcast Host. I'm Seán, I live in Ireland and I'm the poster child for dangerous obsessions with Star Trek. Check out my weekly podcast on all things....well all things film! Check me out on Twitter @seanferrick or at the website https://seanferrick.wordpress.com/