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Star Treks First Transgender Character?

It has been annouced that Discovery will introduce a transgender character to the show, and a non-binary character.

By Three of Seven Fri 04 Sep, 2020 9:11 PM - Last Updated: Sat 05 Sep, 2020 1:17 AM
Recently it has been annouced that Star Trek will intoduce it's first transgender character, Gray who will be played by the trans actor, Ian Alexander, who does not have an extensive acting career as yet, but at the age of just 19, he may well have a bright future. The non-binary character set to be introduced to Discovery is Adira who will be played by Blu del Barrio, for whom, Discovery will be their first acting role.

Star Trek has often tried to present other ideas of gender, such as the J'naii, in the TNG episode "Outcast", who are an androgynous race, they could be argued to be non-binary, because they evolved into not having a gender as such. It can then be argued that Soren is the first transgender character in Star Trek, because she didn't identify as androgynous, but as female, this was frowned upon by her society, and they used psychotectic treatment to for her to conform. This is no doubt a link to real world "conversion therapy", which has been used to control others sexual orientation.

There were a number of other androgynous species, which appeared in TNG, and Enterprise, as well as a reference to hermaphroditic, and species which required three, or more genders for reproduction. Never the less, these all tended to be individual stories, and not a recurring character. For the two characters being introduced in Discovery, they are set to play a role in all of the 13 episodes for season 3, possibly even season 4, depending on where the show goes.

What are you thoughts on these two new characters? Are you looking forward to the third season on Discovery?

WRITTEN & EDITED BY Three of Seven - rena.hobden@ufplanets.com
14 Comments
Fri 04 Sep, 2020 9:15 PM
But is it really the first? Have been so many characters in Star Trek...but Kurtzman again trying to rewrite Star Trek history to fit him...
Fri 04 Sep, 2020 9:27 PM
But is it really the first? Have been so many characters in Star Trek...but Kurtzman again trying to rewrite Star Trek history to fit him...
The first main transgender, and non-binary characters, yes, I can't recall any others, nor could I find any reference on Memory Alpha, all other main characters to my knowladge have been male, or female, even Data is male, despite being an android. So while there have been individual storylines of other gender identities, and as much as Kurtzman has rewritten, in this case, they are the first. And even the first transgender actor on Star Trek.
Fri 04 Sep, 2020 10:17 PM
Dax comes to mind. Many instances where it is confused what it is and experiences it "should feel". You really saw that struggle the most with Ezri, but some scenes with jadzi. Sure the actor(s) isnt trans but imo it fits the bill. However not going to get in some massive debate about subject matter. Its just at times I felt that way and many other audience members with how dax was perceived.
Fri 04 Sep, 2020 10:28 PM


I'am not even a hardcore Trek fan...
Sat 05 Sep, 2020 1:18 AM
Dax comes to mind. Many instances where it is confused what it is and experiences it "should feel". You really saw that struggle the most with Ezri, but some scenes with jadzi. Sure the actor(s) isnt trans but imo it fits the bill. However not going to get in some massive debate about subject matter. Its just at times I felt that way and many other audience members with how dax was perceived.
Dax is not transgender, because Dax is the symboint, not the Trill. Jadzi, and Ezri both identified as women, even if they had memories of being a man because of the symboint. If I put my memories into your mind, would that make you transgender? No, because you would still be you, this was explored when Jadzia was put on trial for the crimes commited by Curzon, while it was not resolved, and it could be argued she accepted responsibility for the crimes of the past hosts, she herself was not responsible. Nor was Curzon as it turned out.

As complicated as having a symboint is, it's not the same as gender idenity.

I'm glad you decided to dislike my post without giving me a chance to retort.

I'am not even a hardcore Trek fan...
Lal appeared for one episode, not a main character, which is kind of the point here. In the article, I mentioned this, "Never the less, these all tended to be individual stories, and not a recurring character.".
Sat 05 Sep, 2020 1:28 PM
Dax is not transgender, because Dax is the symboint, not the Trill. Jadzi, and Ezri both identified as women, even if they had memories of being a man because of the symboint. If I put my memories into your mind, would that make you transgender? No, because you would still be you, this was explored when Jadzia was put on trial for the crimes commited by Curzon, while it was not resolved, and it could be argued she accepted responsibility for the crimes of the past hosts, she herself was not responsible. Nor was Curzon as it turned out.

As complicated as having a symboint is, it's not the same as gender idenity.

I'm glad you decided to dislike my post without giving me a chance to retort.
My downvote was your reply to someone else so not sure what that about.

I have no idea what it would feel like. All I could see is how Ezri struggled with it with awhile, which is my main example I guess. Confused and questioned a lot of things. This was someone not trained to have a symbiont. Having over seven or eight lifetime of memories would be very overwhelming. I'm sure there were rare cases where the memories would of overwhelm the person into changing but then again the symbiosis training process would of failed, in their eyes at least, in that case if the trill didnt be themselves.

I'm not a trans myself to judge the process or remotely understand them. I'm sure its very difficult being one thing and you feel another, which is why I brought up dax with so many memories and feelings.

Anywho, kudos to trek to always push the boundary. Even if I agree or disagree. It's what great about trek you see and learn.
Sat 05 Sep, 2020 2:57 PM
I have no idea what it would feel like. All I could see is how Ezri struggled with it with awhile, which is my main example I guess. Confused and questioned a lot of things. This was someone not trained to have a symbiont. Having over seven or eight lifetime of memories would be very overwhelming. I'm sure there were rare cases where the memories would of overwhelm the person into changing but then again the symbiosis training process would of failed, in their eyes at least, in that case if the trill didnt be themselves.
Ezri struggled because she was not the intended recipient of the Dax symbiont, so she wasn't prepared, and she also didn't have an interest in being joined, it was only when the condition of the Dax symbiont got worse that she became the host. It's no real supprise that she had problems adjusting to new memories, possibly even a problem for those freed from the Borg as well.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 10:57 AM
I think its great that Star Trek continues to push the envelope and try to highlight issues of the day, as it has always done.

EDIT: Quote removed as quoted message has been removed for Code of Conduct breach

I always find it sad and disappointing that someone has to always turn news of progress in LGBT representation into a political narrative. When I saw this article posted, it was sad that I predicted that this sort of response would come.

I'm not trans myself, but as an openly gay man, I can understand the ever-present frustration of having other people try to comment on your lived reality. Trans people can speak for themselves, but if they are never allowed on any mainstream media then they can't. That's why its extremely important that minorities are represented on media, and it also serves to educate others on their struggles.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 3:31 PM
The first main transgender, and non-binary characters, yes, I can't recall any others, nor could I find any reference on Memory Alpha, all other main characters to my knowladge have been male, or female, even Data is male, despite being an android. So while there have been individual storylines of other gender identities, and as much as Kurtzman has rewritten, in this case, they are the first. And even the first transgender actor on Star Trek.
Doesn't say main characters though and that's my problem...every article I've seen just says characters. Not only is Kurtzman trying to take credit for something that isn't true it's also disrespectful that he is trying to erase non-binary characters to toot his own horn. To me that feels like he is just using these characters as tokens and not as people...that all he cares about is the publicity and not the message.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 3:50 PM
Doesn't say main characters though and that's my problem...every article I've seen just says characters. Not only is Kurtzman trying to take credit for something that isn't true it's also disrespectful that he is trying to erase non-binary characters to toot his own horn. To me that feels like he is just using these characters as tokens and not as people...that all he cares about is the publicity and not the message.
On IMDB, they are both listed for all episodes of S3 at the moment, so at the very least, reoccurring cast, which Star Trek still hasn't had for a transgender, or non-binary character. I have tried my best to research this before I published, and those were my findings.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 4:27 PM
On IMDB, they are both listed for all episodes of S3 at the moment, so at the very least, reoccurring cast, which Star Trek still hasn't had for a transgender, or non-binary character. I have tried my best to research this before I published, and those were my findings.
My Memory is trash so I can't quote the names or episodes like a second knowledge like some people but I do remember some examples

https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Soren

Is another example I'm trying to look up that I remember from TNG but so far no luck finding it.

But I think if anything qualifies in Trek to be transgender it's a character who was born a different gender or lack of one and desires to be a different gender. Plus in universe it's pretty hard to tell who may actually be trans because they had the technology to easily change ones outside appearance and back again...saw how easy it was with Quark.

So if one was trans they could easily transition and with medical technology you could probably never tell the difference on the outside.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 4:31 PM
Soren is literally mentioned in the second paragraph of my article, but again, they were part of a single story, not a reoccurring character.
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 7:10 PM
I think this is a really good thing that Star Trek is becoming more inclusive towards the LGBTQI+ community. I quite like how you picked up on different aspects shown in other Star Trek series like the Je'naii as being an androgonous race. It certainly has interesting parallels to recent developments regarding gender and indentity.

Its great that they are even employing a Trans actor to play the role, I feel like this a big step forward for us as a society and for inclusivity in general. Thanks for writing Three!
Sun 06 Sep, 2020 8:36 PM
I think this is a really good thing that Star Trek is becoming more inclusive towards the LGBTQI+ community. I quite like how you picked up on different aspects shown in other Star Trek series like the Je'naii as being an androgonous race. It certainly has interesting parallels to recent developments regarding gender and indentity.

Its great that they are even employing a Trans actor to play the role, I feel like this a big step forward for us as a society and for inclusivity in general. Thanks for writing Three!
This! Thumbs up
'nuff said.