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Chell was a male Bolian who served in both the Maquis and as a provisional member of Starfleet during the late-24th century.


Chell once visited the Kazleti homeworld where he spent weeks learning about the Kazleti technique of making a type of pendant, which he still possessed in 2371.  (VOY: "Learning Curve")

The Maquis

After joining the Maquis, Chell served underneath Chakotay on the Maquis raider Val Jean until the ship was pulled into the Delta Quadrant by the Caretaker and later destroyed. Chell was then forced to join the crew of the USS Voyager who had also been stranded there. (VOY: "Caretaker")

Life on Voyager

Chell, like the majority of the Maquis crew, was given the provisional rank of crewman and served in the operations division. As with many of the former Maquis, he found it difficult adapting to life on board Voyager. In particular, he had trouble following Starfleet rules and protocols, and soon developed a reputation for being overly talkative, disruptive, and unreliable, promising to take on tasks which later went undone.

As a result of this behavior, he and three other former Maquis crewmembers, Kenneth Dalby, Henley, and Gerron were selected by Commander Chakotay to undergo a rigorous Starfleet Academy-inspired training scenario conducted by Lieutenant Tuvok, with the goal of instilling some discipline.

During the training, Chell kept interrupting Tuvok, resulting in him having to run fifty laps around the ship's cargo bay. He was also made to degauss one of the ship's transporter rooms with a micro-resonator, a 26.3-hour task which Tuvok felt would teach him "patience". The Lieutenant also ordered him to remove a Kazleti pendant he was wearing as it was in breach of Starfleet regulations. Chell initially protested, as it had taken him weeks of study to learn how to make it, but relinquished it in the end. (VOY: "Learning Curve")

In 2377, when a mysterious assailant attacked members of the Maquis leaving them in comas, Chell expression a preference to report anything suspicious to Chakotay rather than Tuvok. He espoused a number of implausible theories regarding the attacks such as Starfleet ordering the incidents to "neutralize" the Maquis, and Seven of Nine being the cause. (VOY: "Repression")

Later that year, when B'Elanna Torres was pregnant with Miral, Chell gave her husband Tom Paris the advice that, according to Bolian beliefs, it would improve the baby's disposition if it was born near a warp core. (VOY: "Lineage")

In 2378, Chell had the assignment of scrubbing plasma conduits with Q's offspring, Q Junior, who had been banished to the ship to learn some discipline. However, Chell had to complete the task on his own when Junior was permitted to take a piloting lesson with Icheb instead. (VOY: "Q2")

Later that year, the crew of Voyager were permitted shore leave on the planet Ledos. Chell particularly enjoyed the Flame Gardens on the planet, later telling Ensign Harry Kim that he, "shouldn't miss them" when his turn came. (VOY: "Natural Law")

When Neelix departed the ship in mid-2378, Chell petitioned Captain Janeway to be made the new chef, proposing some interesting additions to the menu, including "Plasma Leek Soup", "Chicken Warp Core-don Bleu", and "Red Alert Chili". Tom Paris later suggested he should add nebula soup to the menu after piloting Voyager through a Borg-infested nebula. (VOY: "Endgame")

Memorable quotes

"Your report indicates that you are talkative, disruptive and unreliable. You promise to do tasks which then go undone."

- Tuvok to Chell, during the Maquis training course (VOY: "Learning Curve")

"Forty laps around the cargo bay. Start running now."
"Fifty laps."

- Tuvok and Chell (VOY: "Learning Curve")

"Maybe he'll slip and plunge to his death."

- Chell of Tuvok, during training (VOY: "Learning Curve")

"We put our differences aside seven years ago. It's ancient history."
"Maybe history is repeating itself."

- B'Elanna Torres and Chell (VOY: "Repression")



Background information

Chell was played by actor Derek McGrath.

McGrath was in Texas filming for a guest role in Walker, Texas Ranger when he received the call to say he had been given the part of Chell in "Learning Curve". Then, a few years later, he was offered to reprise his role on the former show and just as he was in Texas filming, he received a call again asking if he would be interested in playing Chell once more for "Repression", making for a bizarre coincidence. [1]

In order to ensure his Bolian makeup was applied in time for shooting, McGrath was required to be on set by 4:30am each morning. Because that particular type of makeup was new to the Voyager production team, McGrath was asked if he wouldn't mind shaving his arms and head to allow easier application. Though he didn't mind shaving his arms, McGrath joked, "No, I don't think I'll [shave my head] because there is a life after Star Trek." As a result, he was given a skull cap to wear instead. When asked if the blue makeup bothered him, McGrath replied, "They kept discovering things like the fact that it kept coming off on my hands and stayed behind on everything I'd touched. We'd do a scene and I'd have my hands on a railing or another part of the set. Everyone was making fun of my blue face so I began to carry a little sign with me that said, 'Unless your blue joke is both original and clever, please keep it to yourself.'" At one point, he was required to walk across the studio lot in full makeup and a tour of young children passed by. McGrath recalled that most of the group stared at him in amazement, but there was one little boy, "who was absolutely petrified and could not be calmed down. I tried my best to convince him that it was all just pretend but he wasn't having any of that, so I had to leave!" (Cult Times magazine, Issue 16, p.11)

Director David Livingston was given the opportunity to improvise upon the script for "Learning Curve". "I got to add a lot of bits into it," he said, "that weren't necessarily in the original script." This included the scene in which Chell appears for the first time, to which Livingston added a deceptive quality. "There's a three-shot of the three Maquis, and you think that's all the people that Tuvok's talking to," observed the director, "and then, all of a sudden, this blue guy's head comes into the shot and you realize he's talking to this fourth guy as well." Although Livingston was proud of the shot, Executive Producer Rick Berman felt differently. "Rick thought it was hokey, which I get accused of sometimes," Livingston conceded, "but I liked it." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 148)

In a 2011 interview with Trent Radio, McGrath jokingly describes Chell as, "an exploding blueberry". [2]


Chell, as he appears in Star Trek: Elite Force II

Chell appears as a selectable crewmember in the video game Star Trek: Starship Creator, in which his biography states he was born on Bolarus IX in the year 2341, which would make him 30 years of age at the time of "Caretaker". It goes on to describe that prior to the episode, he was a Federation civilian on New Cov until the planet was ceded to the Cardassians after the creation of the demilitarized Zone. He then joined the Maquis in 2370, serving under Chakotay on the raider Val Jean. Following the events of "Learning Curve", his biography reveals he served on Voyager as a systems maintenance technician with no further infractions reported. Chell's interests include Kesleki arts & crafts, spoken-word performances and Ancient Bolian mythology. His file also says he has a brother named Koss who resides on Bolarus IX.

Chell also appears in the video game Star Trek: Voyager: Elite Force, in which he is described as having grown up in an upper class family whose attitude towards the poor he resented. He was rejected by Starfleet Academy twice before finally gaining acceptance the third time. However, he left the Academy after only one year because of the amount of work involved. When the Hazard Team is formed by Tuvok in 2376, Chell applies to join and is accepted, taking on the role of the team's field technician. A short way into the story, he is granted a Starfleet commission by Captain Janeway and promoted to the rank of Ensign. Chell is voiced by his Voyager actor Derek McGrath. The character is also featured in the Elite Force comic as a member of the Hazard Team.

In Star Trek: Elite Force II, Chell is reassigned to the USS Enterprise-E following Voyager's return to the Alpha Quadrant. He plays a role in the Idryll-Attrexian crisis in 2380, helping to translate ancient Idryll artifacts, and assists in the defense of the Enterprise when it is boarded by Idryll invaders. His character is voiced by Boq'ta actor Andy Milder.

In the Star Trek: Prometheus novel Fire with Fire Chell is promoted to lieutenant and assigned to the USS Prometheus as a technician. There, he operates the bridge engineering station during the ship's mission to the Lembatta Cluster, in 2385.

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