Hoist your goblets of blood wine

Enterprise, Star Trek: Fan Collective—Klingon

Unless you’ve been off wrestling targ for the past four decades, you are no doubt familiar with the guilty pleasures of Star Trek. But what do you truly know about the Trek universe’s most honorable race, the Klingons? Well, here’s a crash course.

Collecting 11 fan-favorite episodes, spanning the franchise from The Original Series (TOS) of the late ’60s to last year’s Enterprise, Star Trek: Fan Collective—Klingon beams all the power and the glory of the Klingon empire right into your DVD player.

From the beginning, relations with the Klingons have been uneasy at best. During Captain Kirk’s time, in the two TOS episodes presented, they’re ruthless, all-out baddies. And though these two episodes, especially “The Trouble with Tribbles,” are enjoyable, they only present the glorious warriors as two-dimensional characters. In fact, so little consideration was given to these proud people that, at first, their only discernable characteristics were dark skin and facial hair. Does that make Lieutenant Uhura only one unibrow away from Klingon ancestry? It wasn’t until Star Trek: The Motion Picture, in 1979, that Klingons developed some nuances—at least in their newly ridged foreheads. “Trials and Tribble-ations,” a Deep Space Nine episode included here, offers everyone’s favorite Klingon, Worf, the opportunity to explain the cosmetic change. “We don’t discuss it with outsiders,” he grumphs. A more scientific explanation—something about the Levodian Flu—was later suggested in Enterprise, but that episode was a real Ha’DIbaH, thankfully omitted from this set.

Special features are not very impressive and text commentaries—think Pop-Up Video—may not work on all DVD players. Still, for the price, this set should suit anyone wishing to get a taste of Klingon culture without wading through almost 50 years of Trek canon. There are plenty of exceptional battles, and four Next Generation episodes prove that politics can be gorier than battle.