Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is taking franchise fans back to the pre-Kirk era, and on adventures that hearken back to the original Star Trek series. For that reason, fans might see a few characters from the original era appear in the upcoming Paramount+ show, as well as some new players with ties to other well-known characters, so there’s a lot to keep track of.
The following is a breakdown of what Star Trek: Strange New Worlds characters we'll see, their past history in the franchise, and a little about the actor playing them. Let this be your guide to who’s who in the new series, set to arrive soon.
Captain Christopher Pike is where Star Trek’s story begins, so to speak. Christopher Pike was captain of the Enterprise in the scrapped pilot for the franchise, “The Cage,” but was ultimately replaced by Captain Kirk when the series premiered. Canonically, Pike still preceded Kirk as Captain, and after a standalone episode in the original series, the prime universe character got a real revival via Star Trek: Discovery. We learned a lot about Pike in his short time on that show, including that he knows about the eventual life-changing accident that removes him from Starfleet command.
Anson Mount reprises his role as Pike from his Star Trek: Discovery Season 2, but that’s likely not the first place viewers know him from. Mount’s most-known television work might be Hell on Wheels, where he played the lead role of Cullen Bohannon. He also played Black Bolt on the Inhumans series for Marvel (even though he wanted to play Gambit), though that role was much shorter-lived.
Even those only somewhat familiar with Star Trek likely know Spock, and how his Vulcan logic made him famous all over the world. Spock has several appearances in Star Trek across television and film, and we’ve learned a bit about him in each work. In fact, Spock enters Star Trek: Strange New Worlds not long after his stint in Star Trek: Discovery, where viewers learned he has an adopted sister, Michael Burnham. Beyond that, fans will want to know more about Spock’s formative years, and his close bond with Captain Pike.
Spock is played by Ethan Peck, who garnered praise from Trek fans and even Leonard Nimoy’s daughter, Julie, for his portrayal. Peck’s previous works include Madam Secretary, and Penny Dreadful: City of Angels, just to name a few.
Una Chin-Reilly (Number One)
Una Chin-Reilly might not be a name many remember from Star Trek, but Number One certainly is. The character was only known as “Number One” in “The Cage,” as she was second in command to Captain Pike. Now, she gets a chance to further flesh out her story in Strange New Worlds, as there’s still a lot we don’t know about the character, even after her appearance in Star Trek: Discovery Season 2.
Rebecca Romijn is no stranger to film or television, as fans might know her from her role as Mystique in four X-Men movies, or her long stint on The Librarians. Romijn gets the privilege of fleshing out an established character that fans don’t know much about, which is a rare opportunity in Star Trek.
Nyota Uhura was a Lieutenant and Chief Communications Officer in the original Star Trek series. In Strange New Worlds, she’ll enter the show as a cadet, and I’m sure audiences will love to see how the character acts and carries herself in the time before she became one of the more trusted members of Captain Kirk’s crew.
Uhura is played by Celia Rose Gooding, who is a relative newcomer to television roles. Gooding is most known for her performance in Diablo Cody’s stage musical, Jagged Little Pill. She’ll get a real chance to showcase her acting skills on Strange New Worlds and give new life to the character made famous by actress Nichelle Nichols (who has some thoughts on the new Trek shows).
Dr. M’Benga was a member of the original Star Trek cast of characters, though not featured too often. One notable thing about his character is he interned on Vulcan, and as such is particularly skilled in the treatment of Vulcans. That’s good news for Spock, though I’m sure as the Enterprise doctor he can treat all types of lifeforms.
Babs Olusanmokun steps into the role of Dr. M’Benga, who was first played by Booker Bradshaw. Olusanmokun starred is series like Black Mirror, as well as The Defenders, and Gotham. I’m looking forward to see how he adds to Dr. M’Benga and what more we learn about the character.
Nurse Chapel worked for Dr. McCoy in Star Trek: The Original Series and will appear again in Strange New Worlds. Chapel had a crush of sorts on Spock in the original show, so it’ll be interesting to see if the two have any sort of romance on the upcoming Paramount+ series.
Jess Bush plays the role of Christine Chapel in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, after cutting her teeth on Australian television prior to this. Those looking to check out her work might want to watch Playing for Keeps or Home and Away.
La’an Noonien-Singh is a character new to the franchise, though the character she’s associated with is not. The Strange New Worlds newcomer enters the series as a relative of the infamous villain, Khan Noonien-Singh. We don’t quite know a lot about her character at this time, but suffice it to say, many are interested in learning more.
Christina Chong steps into the role of this mysterious Star Trek: Strange New Worlds character, but she’s known by many for her work in other shows. Anyone interested can check her out in Line of Duty, or 24: Live Another Day, and get ready for what should be an exciting performance in the upcoming spinoff.
Erica Ortegas is a character new to Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, so there’s not a lot of things to say about her. We know she’s a lieutenant, but that's pretty much it. Obviously, we’ll learn more about her when the series gets underway on Paramount+.
Actress Melissa Navia might be new to Trek, but she’s no stranger to television. There are a lot of notable shows Navia has appeared in as of late, including Bull, New Amsterdam, and Billions. That’s more than enough for me to be excited about her appearance in Strange New Worlds, and see what Ortegas brings to the team.
Hemmer is a character that’s new to Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, though his species has precedent in the franchise. Hemmer is an Aenar, a type of albino Andorian species who appeared in Star Trek: Enterprise.
Hemmer is played by Bruce Horak, who doesn’t have a ton of television credits to his name just yet. Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is his first major series, though he had a guest role in the Syfy series Warehouse 13, as well as a role in a short called Gitch. We’ll see what he brings to the table in this new show!
James T. Kirk
Fans originally believed that with Christopher Pike in charge of the Enterprise, there was a slim to nil chance James T. Kirk appeared in Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. It turns out he’ll appear in Season 2, though that’s about all we know about the character’s appearance so far. I’m assuming he won’t be captain at any point during that time, but in some other role within Starfleet.
James T. Kirk will be played by Paul Wesley, who is famously known for his role in The Vampire Diaries. Wesley was also a part of the short-lived Tell Me A Story on Paramount+ and is no stranger to television, or taking command of a series. We’ll see how he plays Kirk, and whether or not there’s a future for the character in the franchise.
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