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The Kazon were an aggressive warrior species from the Delta Quadrant, first encountered by the Federation starship USS Voyager in 2371. (VOY: "Caretaker")

As of 2372, they were divided into eighteen different sects. Each sect had possession of different natural resources over which the sects fought each other. (VOY: "Caretaker", "Initiations", "Alliances")


The Kazon were a subjugated race, used as slave labor by the Trabe, who had conquered their homeworld. It is unknown if the Kazon were divided into sects before they were conquered by the Trabe, but the sects were in existence during their oppression by the Trabe. One of the Trabe's tactics in keeping the Kazon under control was to encourage them to fight amongst themselves. (VOY: "Alliances")

In 2346, Jal Sankur convinced the Kazon sects to put aside their differences and rise up against the Trabe. In doing so the Kazon took the Trabe's ships and technology, forcing them to become a nomadic species, never allowing them to settle on a new world. (VOY: "Initiations", "Alliances")

In 2372, the leaders of all Kazon sects were invited to a peace conference on the planet Sobras by Captain Janeway along with the Trabe leader Mabus. However, Mabus only consented to attend the conference in the hope of eliminating all Kazon leaders at once. The assassination was unsuccessful, and Kazon relations worsened with both the Trabe and the crew of USS Voyager. (VOY: "Alliances")

The Kazon were known to the Borg as Species 329, but were deemed unworthy of assimilation. (VOY: "Mortal Coil", "Relativity")

The number 329 was selected as the Borg designation of the Kazon by Bryan Fuller. He picked it because it was his address at the time. (Information from Larry Nemecek)

In 2381, Brad Boimler was mistaken for a member of this species by Tom Paris. (LD: "We'll Always Have Tom Paris")

In 2383, at least one Kazon slave trader collected Unwanted for the Diviner on Tars Lamora. They were seen on at the Depot on Denaxi. (PRO: "Lost and Found", "Crossroads", "Preludes")

In the 31st century, the holographic program The Voyager Encounter created by the Kyrians incorrectly stated that the Warship Voyager possessed at least one Kazon assimilated into the crew. (VOY: "Living Witness")


As one, the Kazon were known as the Kazon Order; however, they were really a collection of semi-independent sects and there seemed to be no overall leader or government. The major sects were Kazon-Ogla, Kazon-Oglamar, Kazon-Relora, Kazon-Nistrim, Kazon-Mostral, Kazon-Hobii, and Kazon-Pommar. (VOY: "Caretaker", "Alliances", "Maneuvers", "Basics, Part I", "Basics, Part II", "State of Flux")

The two most powerful sects were the Ogla and Relora, who possessed most of the Kazons' manpower and ships. The Nistrim were once a powerful and influential sect, but by 2372, they possessed fewer than six raider vessels. (VOY: "Maneuvers")

Leaders within the Kazon sects were referred to as maje with the head of the sect referred to as first maje. (VOY: "Caretaker")

The behavior of the various Kazon sects had caused them to make many enemies throughout the Delta Quadrant. Attacks on Talaxian trade convoys were frequent. (VOY: "Caretaker", "Alliances", "Investigations")


The Kazon were a humanoid race, having at least two racial variants, one minority race with brown skin and the most common race with copper-colored skin. The foreheads of all Kazon featured distinctive ridges and their black or brown hair grew in large chunks rather than individual strands. (VOY: "Caretaker", et al.) Kazon had a liver. (VOY: "Phage")

Pyrocytes were an integral part of Kazon blood. (VOY: "State of Flux")

Kazon were capable of viewing Medusans, but only with the use of a specially filtered visor. (PRO: "Preludes")


Kazon script

Kazon script

Kazon had a patriarchical society, divided along gender lines, with female Kazon typically spoken down to and treated as second-class citizens. A male Kazon will generally not tolerate being given orders by a woman. (VOY: "Maneuvers", "Alliances")

Male Kazon children were usually raised as warriors. When they came of age, they took part in trials to earn their adult names (see Jal). When they had earned their names, they were considered to be true warriors. Displays of affection from a father to his son were considered a source of shame for the son. Though it was not commonly shown, Kazon do care for their children. (VOY: "Initiations")

The Kazon were the only species known to have been rejected by the Borg for assimilation. The former Borg drone Seven of Nine explained that the reasoning for this decision was that the biological and technological distinctiveness of the Kazon was "unremarkable", and that assimilating them would have detracted from the perfection being pursued by the Borg. (VOY: "Mortal Coil") The Borg designated the Kazon as Species 329. (VOY: "Mortal Coil", "Relativity")


While the technology they took from the Trabe had allowed the Kazon to spread throughout a small area of the Delta Quadrant, it lacked elements common to the technology of Alpha Quadrant races. The Kazon possessed energy weapons such as phasers and tractor beams, as well as deflector shields, but had no knowledge of technology such as transporters and replicators until their first contact with Voyager. (VOY: "Caretaker", "State of Flux", "Initiations", "Alliances")

Kazon raider ships were tactically inferior to a Starfleet Intrepid-class starship, although their larger carrier vessels posed more of a threat. (VOY: "Investigations", "Maneuvers")

Seska considered Kazon medicine to be very primitive. (VOY: "Basics, Part II")

See also[]



Kazon space[]



Background information[]

The Kazon insignia was designed by either Jim Magdaleno (The Official Star Trek: Voyager Magazine issue 1, p. 67) or Wendy Drapanas. (Star Trek Sticker Book, pg. 19)


The idea for the Kazon started to be conceived during secretive development meetings between Rick Berman, Michael Piller, and Jeri Taylor, from which Star Trek: Voyager began to be created. (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager) The series' co-creators originally conceived of the Kazon as contemporary Los Angeles street gangs. Jeri Taylor recalled, "We felt with the Kazon we needed to address the tenor of our times and what [...] was happening in our cities and recognizing a source of danger and social unrest. We wanted to do that metaphorically." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 151) One factor in this analogy was that the trio wanted to have in-fighting between the alien "gangs". Michael Piller commented, "Our intention was to create a sort of disorganized anarchy, them-against-them as much as them-against-us." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 161)

The earliest material evidence of the Kazon concept was one of many summaries that Jeri Taylor wrote about the developmental conversations, written while they were ongoing; the specific summary in which the idea was first written about was dated 10 August 1993 and read, "Maybe there are 'gangs' who are the villains. They don't respect the prime directive, and have interfered with many non-warp cultures. They come in and 'squat' on a planet. They're basically bullies." The same set of notes also posited, "At least two gangs - Crips and Bloods, in competition for influence." (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 186) The terms used to refer to these two groups were intentionally meant as preliminary, shorthand names. (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 187)

On 16 August 1993, Jeri Taylor wrote another summary, including the statement, "The Crips have a rival (or more), for territory; they vie for new worlds, wiping out people on the way. Maybe on some planets they get along with the native population. But generally, they begin, like skinheads, to practice 'ethnic cleansing'." As highlighted in the same summary, Taylor and her fellow series co-creators were considering the possibility that, in the pilot episode of the forthcoming Star Trek series, the series' main characters might form a truce with one of the gangs, making the other gang an enemy for the rest of the series. The document went on to state, "Perhaps there are three gangs, with constantly shifting relationships and allegiances. Just as we think we have sorted it out, the balance shifts again." (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, pp. 187-188)

In a much longer summary, dated the next day (17 August), a preliminary story outline for the pilot episode of the upcoming series described the Crips as "a gang which, in conflict with two other gangs, competes for territory in this region of space." (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, pp. 190-191) Furthermore, this early story outline was evidently influenced by the series co-creators still considering the idea that one of the enemy gangs (now selected to be the Crips) would forge a truce with the series' hero characters and that another of the gangs (said to be the Bloods) would therefore serve as antagonists for the series, vowing to eliminate the main characters. (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 191) This initial concept was scrapped by 10 September 1993, as Jeri Taylor evidenced in another of her notes (which twice abbreviated the terms used for the gangs as "the B's and C's"). The quarrelsome gangs continued to play into development for the pilot episode, although proceeding along much the same lines as they are depicted in the final version of that installment (besides the continued use of their shorthand gang-names). (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 205)

By mid-1994, the name of the new species had been changed to "Gazon" (pronounced with an "a" sound, as opposed to an "ay" sound). This modification was most likely made by Michael Piller, who was working on the script for the pilot episode, "Caretaker", by that point. (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 232) In the first draft script for "Caretaker" (dated 8 June 1994), an introductory description of the aliens read thus:

"They are a lean, scrawny people who dress in an assortment of unkempt clothing. Some are in nothing more than rags. Their skin is parched and desiccated; the sun has produced blotches and sores on some. This appears to be a camp of people barely able to survive, bereft of creature comforts and living a harsh, hardscrabble life. They are the Gazon, whom we will come to know, over the course of the series, as a lethal, deadly sect who subject themselves to these dire circumstances in return for the possible acquisition of power."

At some time in either June, July, or August 1994, the species name was finally changed to "Kazon". (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 281) The reason for the name change between "Gazon" (pronounced with an "a" sound) and "Kazon" (pronounced with an "ay" sound) was that, with the Middle East's Gaza Strip being an oft-mentioned news item at the time, the producers feared that an unintended metaphor might be made between the similarly-sounding "Gazon" and "Gaza Strip". (Star Trek Monthly issue 4, p. 55) As of 30 July 2003, however, Visual Effects Producer Dan Curry was still pronouncing the word Kazon with an "a" sound. ("Red Alert: Visual Effects Season One", VOY Season 1 DVD special features)

The first edition of the in-house Star Trek: Voyager Technical Manual, first printed for staff and vendor use only in September 1994, clarified that only two competing Kazon "sects" were still planned to be established. One of them was branded with the ultimately unused name "Kazon-Sera" (the other being the Kazon-Ogla). [1]

Initial make-up and casting decisions[]

About early June 1994, Make-Up Supervisor Michael Westmore began researching designs for the make-up of the Kazon (who were, at that time, still known as the Gazon). (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 232) Of the eventual Kazon make-up designs, Westmore commented, "The idea with the Kazon was to have a character along the lines of the Klingons, but not to go with the dinosaur bone-type of ridges. It's more of a soft cockscomb, a rooster comb, that goes up the front of the face, and has a nose tip on it, with two extending skin protrusions that literally come up inside the nostrils. It's hard to tell, but there is a difference between the male and female; there's a little harder look and a little more detailed sculpture around the eye on the male; the females are a little softer. And we work with reds and lighter browns for those, as opposed to dark brown for the Klingons." (Star Trek Monthly issue 4, p. 11; Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts, pp. 165-166)

The forehead make-up was designed around an almost devilish structure, and the comb that runs down the forehead was taken from the look of a vulture's neck. As the series progressed, the make-up department took the "vulture neck" from the Kazon comb and built an appliance for the neck instead. In addition, the make-up team created a new nose tip that lengthened the actors' noses and added spikes coming out from below the nostrils. (Star Trek: Aliens & Artifacts, pp. 165-166)

To further the analogy of the Kazon representing street gangs, Michael Piller wanted to only cast actors of a certain youthful age range as Kazon. He explained, "The wish that I had, which was not fulfilled, was that we would only cast people between eighteen and twenty-five-ish so that these would be young, angry people who never lived to be old enough to have the kind of experience and perspective on the world that, say, the Klingons and Romulans might have. They were much more emotional, short fused, and therefore had fewer expectations, which I think is indicative of street gangs today." This concept proved unfeasible, as older actors were found to do better with the roles. Piller noted, "Older actors gave more polished performances." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 161)

The task of designing the make-up for the aliens was not as big a problem as was making the masks for each Kazon actor, as there were many performers who would play the aliens in "Caretaker". Consequently, Michael Westmore had to hire extra mold makers and make-up artists to assist with the work. (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 283) Each morning, the extensive make-up, as well as hair and wardrobe, were applied to the performers. The process of applying the make-up took, in David Livingston's words, "several hours." After transporting all the actors to the filming location of the El Mirage Dry Lake Bed, Livingston and the other members of the filming crew were tasked with keeping the performers comfortable, which was also difficult due to the heat there. (Star Trek: Voyager - Inside the New Adventure)

After Star Trek: Voyager premiered, fan reaction to the Kazon was unrelentingly negative. Most letters criticized the alien designs with such comments as, "They look like they're all having a bad hair day." (A Vision of the Future - Star Trek: Voyager, p. 283)

First season[]

Despite the negative fan response to the Kazon in "Caretaker," they were one of three alien species (along with the Vidiians and the Sikarians) that the writing team of Star Trek: Voyager originally planned, in the series' first season, to feature as recurring, antagonistic aliens. The Kazon were one of only two, though, that did; the Sikarians were not seen again after their use in the Season 1 episode "Prime Factors"). (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 127)

During the first season, Michael Westmore still found that the Kazon were one of Voyager's most demanding species but he also found they were a lot easier to deal with than the usual make-up demands of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. He noted, "With the Kazons, outside of the pilot, we only see three or five of them, so it's a smaller number [than the quantity of aliens often seen on DS9's Promenade]." (Star Trek Monthly issue 9, p. 49) For the reappearances of the Kazon after "Caretaker" (starting with the first season installment "State of Flux"), their look was slightly modified from how they had originally appeared. Shortly after this alteration, Michael Westmore explained, "One slight change already made in the Kazon look are the 'pig ears' that hair designer Josée Normand originally wove into the wigs." These "ears" had proven to be too heavy for not only the active workout that stuntmen put the wigs through, but even for normal use. As a result, the wig appendages were changed to being composed of lighter-weight materials, such as sponges. (Star Trek Monthly issue 4, p. 11)

Second season experiment[]

The writing team of Star Trek: Voyager deliberately made a concerted effort to explore Kazon culture in the series' second season and a major proponent of this was Michael Piller. At the time, he commented, "We met the Kazon the first year and we have been formulating quite a deep investigation of their culture that will turn them, I think, into perhaps one of the top five adversarial alien races in Star Trek's history." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 123)

Due to the increased attention paid to the Kazon, Executive Story Editor Kenneth Biller (early in the season) invented a complex sociological backstory regarding their history and customs, inventing their societal relationship with the Trabe, and writing a document on these ideas. Biller's motive for doing so was that he felt such a paper would prove valuable to the season and would be a good method of coordinating the way in which the Kazon would be portrayed for the rest of the season — a mini-writer's guide just for the Kazon, as it were. Indeed, this paper was used in the writing of both the Biller-penned "Initiations" (during whose development the document was written) and "Alliances", which was written by Jeri Taylor. (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, pp. 161-162)

Michael Piller found that the character of Seska helped with the season's exploration of the alien species. "She allowed us to go behind the scenes with the Kazon [...] Seska helped define the Kazon for us." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 165) Seska actress Martha Hackett noted, "I don't think she gives a hoot about the Kazon." (Star Trek Monthly issue 19, p. 56)

Michael Piller was eager to learn what the reaction to the increased focus on the Kazon would be. He stated, "I'll be curious to know what the audience's perception is, if our investing in the Kazon this season worked." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 161) Even though audience response (in that same season) was apparently that the science fiction nature of Star Trek was not prevalent enough, Michael Piller believed that a futuristic aspect of the season was its use of the Kazon. "There are a lot of people who don't consider a lot of these stories [this season] science fiction," he said. "But certainly you can make a case that facing the Kazon in battle is futurist storytelling." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 150) On this topic, Jeri Taylor admitted, "I think that many of [the season's stories] were sort of internal, character-driven, introspective and that the only times we did any kind of action-adventure was with the Kazon, once again!" (Star Trek Monthly issue 18, p. 13)


Ultimately, Jeri Taylor decided to abandon development of the Kazon after the second season. (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, pp. 149, 151, 161 & 165; Star Trek Monthly issue 15, p. 12, et al.) She commented, "I think that we dwelt too much on the Kazon this year and it was one of the things that didn't work about the season. The Kazon have never been particularly interesting as adversaries, and we just did them and did them and did them and did them. It created the curious implication that we are standing still in space, when our franchise is that we are going at incredible speeds toward the Alpha Quadrant - we keep running into the same people over and over again! It was just an oddity, and I don't think the Kazon have served us well. And [...] it is my intention to leave them behind and to find new and I hope more interesting aliens." (Star Trek Monthly issue 18, p. 13)

Referring to his difference with Taylor concerning the season's close look at the Kazon, Piller commented, "I think that Jeri was unhappy in general with the Kazon, but I think it was important and valuable to create this adversary." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 165)

Executive Producer Rick Berman agreed with the opinion that Taylor ultimately formed about the Kazon. In the interim between the second and third seasons, Berman declared, "I think you have seen the end of Kazon space. If you think about it, traveling for a year-and-a-half through a part of space dominated by one group is pretty amazing! I think traveling at warp speed for a year-and-a-half you would pass through the Federation, the Klingon Empire and a few other places. So I think we have overextended our visit into Kazon space and those stories are all going to be resolved and done with at the beginning of the [third] season." (Star Trek: Communicator issue 108, p. 56)

Another production staffer who supported the choice to no longer feature the Kazon was Brannon Braga. Regarding how he thought the series should progress after the second season, he related, "I think the show will stop having the feeling that we're traveling in a big circle. No more Kazon. We can say what we want, but the Kazon are just half-baked Klingons." (Star Trek Monthly issue 20, p. 36)

The cessation of focus on the Kazon also made sense to members of Star Trek: Voyager's regular cast. Tuvok actor Tim Russ, for instance, supposed, "The only thing about it is that we are presumably in motion toward home, and I don't know what the Kazon's realm covers. You know, how expansive is it? They can only be with us for so long, you know, from what I can gather, unless they reestablish. They are nomadic. They have to be nomadic to the point where they're always roaming and that you could stretch out for a while, but you can't stretch out a territorial dispute, because we're no longer in the territory. We're out of range of a lot of things because [we're] on the move, and that's something the writers just built right into the story. Three years from now you can't be talking about the Kazon." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, pp. 151-152) Russ also said of the villainous species, "That's the only thing that really wasn't working for all of us. The bad guys we've dealt with every other show just have not been that imposing, haven't been enough of a threat, as it were, for anyone - the characters or the fans - to take seriously." (Starlog issue #231, p. 49)

Neelix actor Ethan Phillips declared, "We need to phase out the Kazon a little bit. They're not very exciting [...] I think we should send the Kazon back to the Gamma Quadrant." (Starlog issue #231, p. 49)

Half-jokingly, Robert Picardo, the performer of The Doctor, agreed, "Really, other than their hair, the Kazon aren't too scary." Picardo also felt that the only "fun" aspect to having the Kazon in the series was their hair. (Starlog issue #231, p. 49)

Chakotay actor Robert Beltran reckoned, "The Kazon don't have much intelligence. So, I don't think we respect them much as adversaries." (Starlog issue #231, p. 49)

Yet another supporter of the decision to rid the series of the Kazon was Janeway actress Kate Mulgrew. She commented, "We need [...] to encounter enemies of such ferocity, enemies who in fact are quite lethal and frightening. Enemies that you would watch and say, 'Oh, boy, how are they going to get out of this one?' I don't think the Kazon hit the bill." (Star Trek Monthly issue 20, p. 28) Mulgrew also noted, "I never cared much for the Kazon... They're just great big stupid giants." (Star Trek: Voyager Companion, p. 125) Additionally, she commented about Star Trek: Voyager's second season, "I don't think our dealing with the presence of the Kazon was as effective as the actual pursuit of our mission to get home would have been." (Starlog issue #231, p. 49)

Even Michael Piller, having championed the Kazon arc of the second season, admitted, "As the season progressed, I think [the actors playing Kazon] got older and older still, and as a result, I think we didn't fulfill the full potential of the Kazon, even though I think they were written pretty well. I think they ultimately came out being sort of Klingon-ish and I regret that we didn't stick to our original version of keeping them young." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 161)

Although many of the same in-house writers worked on the multiple Star Trek spinoff series, not all of them remembered or knew who the Kazon were. Upon René Echevarria mistaking a Kobliad bar patron for a Kazon, during the recording of an audio commentary for TNG: "Preemptive Strike", Naren Shankar admitted, "I don't know what you're talking about." Echevarria explained, "They had that kinda Rasta look."

Writer K. Stoddard Hayes critiqued, "The Kazon [...] are stereotypical macho space warriors. No memorable Kazon characters emerge from two seasons of episodes featuring their different factions." (Star Trek Magazine issue 179, p. 18)

Final appearances[]

Intended to serve as the swan-song for the Kazon was the two-parter "Basics, Part I" and "Basics, Part II", which bridged Voyager's second and third seasons. However, it was initially uncertain that it would be the Kazon who would act as adversaries in that two-part story. "When we were going in," Michael Piller said of the two-parter's development, "there was a real question of whether it was going to be a new alien group [...] or the Kazon. I was the one who really drove the unit toward the Kazon, because I felt we had built up this arc with them and it was a natural conclusion." (Captains' Logs Supplemental - The Unauthorized Guide to the New Trek Voyages, p. 169)

Despite their final encounter with Voyager at the outset of Season 3, Kazon references crop up in each subseqent season of VOY. These include: a Kazon believed to be forced into becoming a member of the Voyager crew in Season 4's "Living Witness"; Seven of Nine traveling back in time to a battle between Voyager and the Kazon in Season 5's "Relativity"; Seven investigating Voyager's initial conflict with them and the subsequent destruction of the Caretaker's array in Season 6's "The Voyager Conspiracy"; and Chakotay returning to the events of "Basics, Part II" in Season 7's "Shattered".


According to Vice Admiral Janeway's logs in Star Trek: Prodigy's Logs, the Kazon were able to gain access to the Borg's Transwarp network and used them to deliver The Unwanted to Tars Lamora.[2]

External links[]