Star Trek: 10 Things You Never Knew About Chakotay

9. He Has Roots In Polynesian History

Chakotay Pips
I. W. Taber via WikiCommons

An original outline for the character of Chakotay described him as a 'Queequeg' type person who has renounced Earth and lives as an expatriate on another planet.

Queequeg was a character from Herman Melville's Moby Dick, a book often sourced in Star Trek, most notably by Khan. A tattooed cannibal, he was the son of a south sea chieftain who left home to explore the world. An affable man, he is the first character to whom Ishmael is introduced in the novel. He is also responsible for saving Ishmael's life, albeit unwittingly and posthumously.

Queequeg himself was based on a historical figure, that of Te Pēhi Kupe. Kupe was a Māori rangatira and war leader of Ngāti Toa. He took part in what became known as the Musket Wars. The parallels between the three men were that they all had a keen sense of adventure, though perhaps Chakotay and Kupe are closer to each other in terms of their nationalism. Kupe, after traveling to Britain and meeting King George IV, returned home and took up arms against neighbouring tribes. Chakotay of course resigns his Starfleet commission to fight with the Maquis against the Cardassians.

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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