Star Trek TNG: 10 Questions About Worf, Answered
One of the most distinguished Klingons in the history of the Star Trek franchise, Worf has become synonymous with all that is best of his people and culture. Though his life has been lived with one foot in the Federation and one foot in the Klingon Empire, Worf has sought to combine the best aspects of their traits to make him a model Starfleet Officer. He has served with distinction as Security Chief aboard the Enterprise-D beginning with Star Trek: The Next Generation,and continued in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine as an Ambassador between the Klingon Empire and the Federation.
Although Worf is reserved and taciturn, deeply valuing the traditions of his Klingon heritage, his time aboard the Enterprise revealed a man capable of great courage, compassion, and integrity. His service record under Captain Jean-Luc Picard earned him a great deal of respect and lasting friendships with the crew. Here are 10 questions about Worf, answered.
10 WAS WORF REALLY THE FIRST KLINGON TO SERVE IN STARFLEET?
Though Worf has the distinction of technically being the first Klingon to serve in Starfleet, that monumental record of service comes at the expense of another Klingon. Worf's acceptance into Starfleet Academy in the 1984 Star Trek: The Original Series comic prevents a Klingon defector named Konom from being the first Klingon to serve in Starfleet.
Star Trek: The Next Generation established that Worf knew of his destiny from the time he was fifteen years old, when doing the Rite of MajQa, a ritual involving a long period of meditation and fasting. Kahless came to him and explained he'd do what no Klingon before him had ever done.
9 WHAT WAS HIS CHILDHOOD LIKE?
Worf had a difficult childhood, growing up between two different worlds: the world of humans, and the world of Klingons. Worf's father took his family to live on the Khitomer colony when he was five years old, a decision which would prove fatal when the Romulan Empire attacked it, leaving Worf orphaned.
Four thousand lives were lost, but Worf survived, and was adopted by the Rozhenkos family when the USS Intrepid answered the distress call. The Intrepid's chief petty officer Sergey Rozhenkos took him to live in the farming community of Gault, where he was raised alongside Sergey's human son, Nikolai.
8 WHY DOES HE HAVE A SCAR?
One of the earliest memories that Worf has of his father is going on a ritual hunt with him on the Khitomer colony. Worf was barely able to hold his bat'leth upright, let alone follow his father's instruction. Despite his father and another Klingon's presence, young Worf was mauled by a beast and left with a scar.
The incident left a lasting impression on him, compounded by the fact that when he was thirteen and participating in a youth soccer match as captain, he head-butted Mikel, a rival teammate when going for the ball. The force of his Klingon ridges against Mikel's head snapped his neck and he died. This event scarred Worf for the rest of his life.
7 WHY DID HE ONCE CONTEMPLATE SUICIDE?
Klingons believe that once they're infirm and unable to battle as warriors or be a contributing member of society, suicide is an acceptable way to ease their burden on others. It must be assisted however, in a ceremony known as hegh'bat, so that the Klingon can retain their honor.
After sustaining a spinal injury he thought would paralyze him forever, Worf requested Commander Riker assist him in the ceremony. Fortunately, Dr. Toby Russell pioneered a technique for regrowing spinal columns, which helped Worf to recover to full strength.
6 HAS HE EVER BEEN IN LOVE?
Worf has been enthralled with several women in his life, all of them possessing the sort of qualities Klingon males find especially attractive. One of the most prominent was K'ehleyr, whom he had known since he attended Starfleet Academy. When she appeared on the Enterprise for a time, they rekindled their romance due to her strong and forceful nature.
He was also smitten with Ba'el, a half-Klingon, half-Romulan born in an internment camp in the Carraya system. For a time, even Counselor Troi caught his attention, though the match was quickly deemed imprudent. He only married Jadzia Dax once he served aboard Deep Space Nine, a Trill who could match him in a battle of wit as well as fists.
5 HAS HE EVER HAD A FAMILY?
After Worf mated with K'Ehleyr, a fiery Klingon that he had an off-again, on-again relationship with for several years, she returned to the Enterprise to inform him that he'd become a father. She presented their son Alexander, to which Worf didn't have an immediate bond.
When K'Ehleyr was tragically killed by Duras, a trouble-maker for Worf's House in the Klingon Empire, he became Alexander's sole parent. When he married Jadzia Dax, they became somewhat of a family unit on Deep Space Nine until her untimely demise.
4 WHAT'S HIS RELATIONSHIP TO THE KLINGON EMPIRE?
Though Worf, son of Mogh, has been a member of a respected Klingon House of Martok since birth, rival houses have cast aspersions on his familial honor, requiring him to frequently return to the Empire to keep the peace. He returned when Duras, desirous of becoming High Chancellor, spread rumors that Worf's father was a Klingon defector that helped the Romulans attack the Khitomer colony where he died a traitor.
Despite a secret and long-lost brother on the Klingon High Council (Kurn), Worf came under fire with the Klingon Empire and High Chancellor Gowron when he disapproved of the invasion of Cardassia. When he later defeated Gowron in battle, he forfeited his own chance to be High Chancellor, giving it to General Martok of his House's name.
3 WHAT ARE WORF'S HOBBIES?
Worf is at his happiest participating in some aspect of Klingon culture. He loves nothing more than to initiate specially designed programs on the holodeck to go through battle simulations, with the formidable bat'leth, and his personal favorite, the mek'leth, both bladed weapons of considerable danger in the hands of anyone other than a Klingon.
Due to his prowess as a warrior, he was able to beat both Duras and Gowron, two of the Klingon Empire's most famous fighters, in duels to the death. When he wasn't maiming anyone, Worf enjoyed being a part of the parrises squares team aboard the Enterprise, and leading Mok'bara classes for physical fitness.
2 IS WORF A MODEL KLINGON?
Due to not growing up around any Klingons, Worf's personality and behavior came from what he thought was appropriate for a Klingon. Being raised by humans, he felt an intense loyalty to the family that rescued him, but also to the traditions of his homeworld.
Ironically, Worf's conservative nature and reserved demeanor often clashed with the real Klingons he would meet aboard the Enterprise. Whereas Worf rarely laughed, Klingons from the Empire would crack wise constantly. He came to find them a robust, earthy people that didn't know what to make of his hyper-serious demeanor.
1 WHAT ARE ALL THE POSITIONS WORF HAS HELD?
When The Next Generation began, Worf held a position at ops, similar in some respects to Commander Data. He always admired Security Chief Tasha Yar's martial skill and commitment to duty, so it was perhaps no small wonder that he received her position following her death after Season 2.
After the Enterprise was destroyed, Worf contemplated where he would next like to be stationed. Commander Sisko of Deep Space Nine reached out for help dealing with the Klingon population aboard his station and he became a Federation Ambassador to Qo'noS.