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Jolene Blalock Had Strong Opinions For Star Trek: Enterprise's Writers Over T'Pol's Look

Loyalty to the canon is incredibly important to most devotees of "Star Trek." In "Star Trek Creator: The Authorized Biography of Gene Roddenberry," author and journalist David Alexander illustrates the lengths that the creator of "Star Trek" himself went to make sure that the internal lore and science of the crew of Starfleet, the United Federation of Planets, and all of the various races and species, remained consistent. Of course, there's also the stereotype of the pedantic Trekkie, always able to pick up on the slightest deviation from the canon.

Then again, there is something to be said for canonical loyalty. Not only do a good portion of fans expect it, but a skillful writer, director, or actor will see it as a source of dramatic tension, a challenge rather than a hindrance. What's more, some die-hard fans grow up to be a part of the "Star Trek" franchise. 

This was the case with Jolene Blalock, who played the Vulcan science officer T'Pol on the prequel series "Star Trek: Enterprise." Blalock was already a big fan of "Star Trek," having watched the original series with her family growing up. As anyone who knows even the smallest bit of "Star Trek" lore will confirm, Vulcans are renowned for their stoicism, and for valuing logic over emotion, going all the way back to Leonard Nimoy's Spock. While this may have presented its own challenge to the expressive Blalock early on in the run of "Enterprise," there was another challenge that came later.

Jolene Blalock felt the writers were compromising T'Pol's Vulcan ways

Portraying Vulcan stoicism may have been a test for Jolene Blalock, but she soon started to have the opposite problem. The writers and producers started having T'Pol display the one thing Vulcans are prone to shun: emotion. Writers began to show T'Pol not just showing emotion but eagerly exploring it, even giving her an arc where she becomes addicted to a chemical that allowed her to do so. Prior to the cancellation of "Enterprise," T'Pol's father was going to be revealed in Season 5 as a Romulan, a race whose own emotionality would have ostensibly explained these characteristics (via Heavy.com). Add it to the slew of plotlines that went unresolved after the series' cancellation.

Blalock was dissatisfied enough with these decisions, and is quoted in a short FanSided piece as saying, "You might as well clip the ears." But her dissatisfaction didn't stop there. Blalock was irked by how frequently the show would diverge from basic realism –- or, for a sci-fi show, basic believability. For example, her hair never moved, even when T'Pol was in a physical fight. And if her hair did happen to move, the scene would need to be reshot.

Then there was the sudden change in T'Pol's wardrobe in Season 3. Though her new plunging neckline was explained as a result of T'Pol having resigned the Vulcan High Command, Blalock called it out as a blatant attempt to boost ratings by showing a bit more skin. "You can't substitute t*** and a** for good storytelling," said Blalock. "You can have both, but you can't substitute one for the other, because the audience is not stupid."