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Why The Klingons Look So Different On Star Trek: Strange New Worlds

Throughout "Star Trek," one species that has a makeover on more than one occasion is the battle-hardened race, the Klingons. Originally, they aren't too dissimilar from Romulans when they appear in the original "Star Trek" timeline, before shifting to the more well-known appearance that debuted in "Star Trek: The Motion Picture." However, the aliens gained a more aggressive alteration in "Star Trek: Discovery." When facing Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), the warrior race was made up of snaggletoothed monsters, almost devolved from what came before. But it was in Season 2 of "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds" when director Chris Fisher phased back to the more popular design.

Speaking on the "The 7th Rule" podcast, Fisher revealed why tactics were applied to refine the feared species during Captain Pike's (Anson Mount) adventures, and the main reason was to return some emotion back to the alien world. "I'd say one of the big challenges of this episode for me as a director was reintroducing Klingons," admitted Fisher, in reference to the Season 2 premiere. "I personally love the look of the Klingons in Discovery, [but] that look wasn't gonna work us. Because we're a character-driven show, we need Klingons who can actually emote emotion and not have so much prosthetics and visual effects. So we really kind of moved the Klingons from a creature into a character." 

The beloved design worked wonders, but it wasn't the only "Star Trek" show to highlight the iconic Klingon look that year, either.

The classic Klingon look was still present in Picard Season 2

While a back-and-forth might've happened with the Klingons in "Star Trek: Strange New Worlds," one that didn't get any updated treatment on "Star Trek: Picard" was Captain Worf, whose actor, Michael Dorn, is open to a potential spin-off focused on the character. During Jean-Luc Picard's (Patrick Stewart) adventure that sees him get the band back together, he's reunited with his former Enterprise-D chief tactical officer who still had the same look he debuted with in "Star Trek: The Next Generation," albeit a little grayer. Thankfully, Dorn was happy to go through the old routine of applying the ridges and the hair in what was a much faster process than it used to be.

Speaking to TrekMovie, Dorn explained, "There's some parts of it that had been consistent over the years. But the one thing they did, which I never thought of, which is they had two people working on me at the same time. And so the process only took about an hour." After playing the character since 1987, Dorn praised the team behind his transformation, which even swayed him to the idea of returning as Worf in the future. "They made it much easier. And the thing is, if they say 'Oh Michael, we want you to come back and do it,' then the makeup is not going to be as much of a sticking point as it was before." 

Well, if it means he is rocking the classic Klingon look, then beam us up.