The era of Star Trek is still upon us, with Star Trek: Discovery on Netflix with a new series, it seems that it’s a franchise many generations will get to enjoy. Of course, with every generation of Star Trek series comes a different number one, the person closest to the Captain’s side. The term ‘number one’ typically referred to someone who was either first or second in command by the Royal Navy. However, in Star Trek, it relates to the Captain’s second in command, who, in the original pilot, was played by a woman only referred to as ‘number one.’ Since then, there have been many number ones.
It goes without saying that Spock was a great number one, and a character that would shape millions of people across the globe. Iconic and captivating, Spock’s character was quizzical and fascinating due to his half-human half-Vulcan nature, taking on the role as the level-headed, calm, and calculated role on the ship. He served under Captain Kirk and balanced out the character’s general sense of rashness. People started to fall for this character, and he became something of people’s dreams, while this might seem strange to some people, it was a real concern for William Shatner, who played Captain Kirk. While Leonard Nimoy may have hated donning the ears of the iconic character, he claims that if he had to be anyone but himself, he would choose to be Spock. The role eventually went to Zachary Quinto in the latest movies, but Nimoy will always be the original.
Commander William Riker
Starring next to Patrick Stewart’s Captain Picard, Jonathan Frakes played Commander William Riker in series Star Trek: The Next Generation. This setup was almost the complete opposite of the original series, since Picard’s leadership was very calm and level-headed, compared to his number one, William Riker, who was quick to temper and hot-headed. Fans loved watching his character develop as the series went on, watching as he learned from Picard’s leadership and developing a calmer approach to problems.
Colonel Kira Nerys
While it seemed that Colonel Kira Nerys was only chosen for her role by Commander, and Captain, Sisko, they ended up developing an enviable friendship together. Kira Nerys had endured slavery and resistance as well as her role, she wasn’t apart of Starfleet which is precisely the motivation behind having her on board as the second-in-command, so it would improve relations with Bajor. She was also stubborn and quick-tempered but eventually softened. One unwavering quality was her faith, which was what she put above everything, even duty.
Lieutenant Commander Chakotay
While people were pleased with the casting for Star Trek’s Voyager’s number one, but it soon became apparent that this relationship wasn’t going to work out. People just didn’t fine Lieutenant Commander Chakotay very interesting, he may have been the kind of guy that didn’t take disobedience, so perhaps he was a good leader, but that’s not particularly riveting stuff.
T’Pol was a good number one, if sometimes a little bland, however, she was in tune with the dynamic in Star Trek: Enterprise. She was a Vulcan serving on a human ship as the Vulcan High Command didn’t trust Captain Jonathan Archer or Starfleet as a whole. She was naturally measured, calm, and calculating, but it was soon discovered that she was more emotional than she realized. This definitely caused some exciting episodes.
There have been an equal number of men and women number ones if you include the original, all of which had their quirks and their downsides.