Multiple realities
(covers information from several alternate timelines)

Ranks of the National Socialist Party provided a hierarchy and chain of command for individuals serving in the various branches of the party, paramilitary, and military. These ranks were often displayed in the form of rank insignia on National Socialist uniforms.

20th century

German Army

The military ranks used by the German Army, or Heer, were based on the same rank structure used by many other Earth armies. Their rank insignia was worn as a combination of a collar patch and shoulder epaulet. (VOY: "The Killing Game, Part II"; ENT: "Storm Front", "Storm Front, Part II")

Of the list below, only two ranks were referenced by name in dialogue, "Leutnant", as stated by Q while addressing Jean-Luc Picard who held the comparable Starfleet rank of lieutenant junior grade in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Tapestry", and "Hauptmann", as stated by Brigitte, made in reference to an SS-Hauptsturmführer in the Star Trek: Voyager episode "The Killing Game". Contrarily, in the case of the "Generalmajor", only the English equivalent of "General" was used, as spoken by the Na'kuhl, Vosk.
Rank Insignia Example
Generalmajor
(Brigadier general)
Heer generalmajor collar patch.pngHeer generalmajor shoulder braid.png German Army generalmajor uniform.jpg
Hauptmann
(Captain)
Leutnant
(Second lieutenant)
Gefreiter
(Lance corporal)
Heer gefreiter shoulder patch.pngEkosian-SS trooper epaulet.png German Army gefreiter hologram.jpg
Soldat
(Private)
Heer enlisted collar litzen.png
No sleeve insignia
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png
Nazi soldier 5.jpg

German SS

Hirogen in Nazi SS uniform with swastika flag

The paramilitary ranks used by the Schutzstaffel were implemented in Nazi Germany from the 1930s until their defeat in 1945.

Their rank insignia consisted of a black patch with a combination of a leaf, stripe, or pip. Where the leaf with a combination of pips, was worn by the rank of colonel and higher. Pips and stripes were worn by both commissioned and non-commissioned officers, with the latter wearing an additional thick white piping along the collar. Ordinary SS soldiers, i.e. mann (or private), wore a blank rank patch. (TOS: "Patterns of Force"; VOY: "The Killing Game", "The Killing Game, Part II"; ENT: "Storm Front", "Storm Front, Part II")

In addition to collar insignia, SS uniforms also used shoulder straps to denote rank (by type of epaulet) and position (by color).

There were generally five distinct epaulets worn with each uniform. They consisted of either a wide silver or gold braid for flag officers, much like those worn in the Heer, a thin twisted silver cord for senior officers, an epaulet parallel silver cords for junior officers, a black epaulet with thin white cord around the border for SS troopers, and a black epaulet with thick silver embroidered around the border for non-commissioned officers. Silver or gold pips, as found on collar insignia, were further used to denote level of rank on each epaulet. (VOY: "The Killing Game", "The Killing Game, Part II"; ENT: "Zero Hour")

The lance corporal grade of the Waffen-SS wore the same strap as a private, but also displayed a sleeve chevron. (VOY: "The Killing Game", "The Killing Game, Part II")

The black officer uniform epaulets worn on the black uniform were thinner and slightly longer than those of the grey field uniforms. Black uniform epaulets were also worn on the right shoulder only whereas the field uniforms had boards on both shoulders. (ENT: "Storm Front", "Storm Front, Part II")

Officer ranks Insignia Example
Standartenführer
(Colonel)
SS colonel collar badge.png
SS senior officer silver epaulet.png
Karr.jpg
Obersturmbannführer
(Lieutenant colonel)
SS lieutenant colonel collar badge.png
SS senior officer silver epaulet.png
Vosk.jpg
Hauptsturmführer
(Captain)
SS captain collar badge.png
SS captain shoulder strap.jpg
Kraul.jpg
Obersturmführer
(First lieutenant)
SS first lieutenant collar badge.png
SS first lieutenant shoulder strap.png
Ghrath.jpg
Untersturmführer
(Second lieutenant)
SS second lieutenant collar badge.png
SS second lieutenant shoulder strap.jpg
Turanj.jpg
Non-commissioned officer ranks Insignia Example
Oberscharführer
(Staff sergeant)
SS staff sergeant collar badge.jpg
SS staff sergeant shoulder strap.jpg
Nazi guard 1.jpg
Unterscharführer
(Sergeant)
SS sergeant collar badge.jpg
SS sergeant shoulder strap.jpg
Nazi SS-sergeant, 1944.jpg
Soldier ranks Insignia Example
Rottenführer
(Corporal)
SS corporal collar badge.png
SS soldier officer shoulder strap.jpg
SS corporal chevrons.png SS radio corporal.jpg
Sturmmann
(Lance corporal)
SS lance corporal collar badge.png
SS soldier officer shoulder strap.jpg
Na'kuhl lance corporal.jpg
Mann
(Private)
SS private collar badge.png
SS soldier officer shoulder strap.jpg
Nazi SS-private 3, 1944.jpg

23rd century

A resurgence of the Nazi Party occurred on the planet Ekos during the 2260s, after the Ekosians were introduced to their concepts by Federation historian and cultural observer, John Gill. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

None of the German language equivalent terms represented below were used on screen, and in many cases, the English equivalent was otherwise used (i.e. colonel, major, lieutenant, trooper), when referenced.

Ekosian Army

The military ranks used by the Ekosians were based on the same rank structure as their German Nazi benefactors, where the rank insignia was worn as a combination of a collar patch and shoulder epaulet. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Rank Collar badge
Epaulet
Example
Generalmajor Heer generalmajor collar patch.pngHeer generalmajor shoulder braid.png Ekosian Wehrmacht general.jpg

Ekosian Nazi Party

Numerous aspects of the original German Nazi Party were introduced to the Ekosians, including the combined use of a number of titles shared simultaneously. Additionally, in contrast to the original German Nazi practices, the Ekosian system allowed for women to attain high ranks in society. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Political titles
Title Insignia Example
Führer None John Gill, Führer poster.jpg
Deputy Führer None Melakon.jpg
Chairman of the Party None Eneg.jpg
Party Secretary None Daras.jpg

Several high-ranking officers of the party, in German called Reichsleiter (National Governors), wore military uniforms with Nazi Party rank insignia. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Political ranks
Rank Collar badge
Epaulet
Example
Reichsleiter
(National leader)
150px
SS Nazi general epaulet.png
Ekosian Reichsleiter.jpg
Hauptdienstleiter
(Head service leader)
SS hauptdienstleiter collar badge.png
SS Nazi general epaulet.png
Ekosian hauptdienstleiter.jpg

Ekosian SA

The Ekosian Sturmabteilung wore uniforms bore insignia comparable to their German-Nazi predecessors, which included a plain golden-yellow or scarlet collar patches on the left to indicate rank, and another patch of the same color on the right with their unit number. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Ekosian rank German rank Collar badge Example
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SA private collar badge.png Ekosian stormtrooper 3.jpg
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SA trooper collar badge.png Ekosian stormtrooper 1.jpg

Ekosian SS

The SS on Ekos wore rank insignia much the same way as the German SS did on Earth. All SS members wore an SS collar tab on the right followed by a service designation collar tab worn on the left.

Individual rank was displayed by epaulets (one on the right shoulder for all black SS uniforms and on both shoulders for all other SS uniforms).

There existed at least one non-commissioned officer rank of corporal as well as commissioned officer ranks including such titles as major.

Although Doctor McCoy was recognized as an SS colonel, his uniform and insignia are not included in the table below since he was technically wearing a German SS uniform created by the Enterprise computer, not a uniform procured from the Ekosian SS, as his insignia was otherwise recognized as a major by the Ekosians. Similarly, the soldier identified on Ekos as a corporal wore the German SS insignia of a staff sergeant.

When the USS Enterprise made contact with the planet Ekos, the only observed Ekosian SS generals were dressed in black uniforms worn with heavy gold epaulets and oak leaf collar patches in various patterns. At a special speech given by John Gill, four SS-Leaders in general's rank were in attendance two of whom were SS wearing patches indicating the positions of Brigadeführer, and Reichsführer-SS. (TOS: "Patterns of Force")

Commissioned Officer ranks
Ekosian rank
German rank
(English equivalent)
Collar badge
Epaulet
Example
Reichsführer-SS
(Reich Leader-SS)
Reichsführer-SS insignia.png
SS Nazi general epaulet.png
Ekosian Reichsführer-SS.jpg
Brigadeführer
(Brigadier)
SS brigadier general collar badge.png
SS Nazi general epaulet.png
Ekosian Gestapo general.jpg
Major Standartenführer
(Colonel)
Ekosian-SS major collar badge.png
SS senior officer silver epaulet.png
Ekosian SS major.jpg
Obersturmbannführer
(Lieutenant colonel)
SS lieutenant colonel collar badge.png
SS senior officer silver epaulet.png
Ekosian SS Gestapo official 1.jpg
Lieutenant Obersturmführer
(First lieutenant)
SS first lieutenant collar badge.png
SS second lieutenant shoulder strap.jpg
Spock SS-first lieutenant.jpg
Lieutenant Untersturmführer
(Second lieutenant)
SS second lieutenant collar badge.png
Ekosian-SS officer silver epaulet.png
Ekosian SS lieutenant 1, headshot.jpg
Lieutenant Untersturmführer
(Second lieutenant)
SS second lieutenant collar badge.png
SS second lieutenant shoulder strap.jpg
Ekosian Gestapo lieutenant, headshot.jpg

Unlike their unbeknownst German counterparts, the Esokian master sergeant wore a much more elaborate insignia, with gold pips and an epaulet consisting of a gold braid that was otherwise shared with general officer ranks.

Non-Commissioned Officer ranks
Ekosian rank
German rank
(English equivalent)
Collar badge
Epaulet
Example
Hauptscharführer (Master sergeant) SS master sergeant collar badge.png
SS Nazi general epaulet.png
Ekosian Gestapo official.jpg
Corporal Scharführer
(Staff Sergeant)
Ekosian-SS corporal collar badge.png
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png
Ekosian SS corporal.jpg
Unterscharführer
(Sergeant)
SS sergeant collar badge 2.png Spock SS Sergeant.jpg
Unterscharführer
(Sergeant)
SS sergeant collar badge.png Ekosian newscaster.jpg

The ranks of the SS soldiers also included a recruit type position which wore an SS uniform without any insignia.

Enlisted ranks
Ekosian rank
German rank
(English equivalent)
Collar badge
Epaulet
Example
Sturmmann
(Lance corporal)
SS lance corporal collar badge 2.png
SS second lieutenant shoulder strap.jpg
Ekosian SS trooper 9.jpg
Sturmmann
(Lance corporal)
SS lance corporal collar badge.png
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png
Ekosian SS trooper 15.jpg
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SS private collar badge 2.png
Ekosian-SS officer silver epaulet.png
Ekosian SS trooper 5.jpg
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SS private collar badge 2.png
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png
Ekosian SS trooper 6.jpg
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SS private collar badge 2.png Isak as SS-Trooper.jpg
Trooper Mann
(Private)
SS private collar badge.png
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png
Ekosian SS trooper 11.jpg
Anwärter
(Recruit)
Ekosian-SS trooper epaulet.png Zeon disguised as Ekosian recruit.jpg


Appendices

Background information

Collar patches all around

While "The Killing Game" and "Storm Front" portray SS uniforms with mostly correct badges and insignia, there were still a few notable costuming inconsistencies.

These included the instance in "Zero Hour" of a second lieutenant wearing the same patches on both his collar, which was correct, as well as his epaulets, which was not correct. There was also a noticeable costuming change between "Zero Hour" and "Storm Front", where the SS officers in the first episode wore standard SS runes on their left collar, but were replaced in the second episode where all SS soldiers wore the insignia of the SS-Totenkopfverbände (Death's Head units), those who were otherwise in charge of concentration camps.

"Patterns of Force", however, was wrought with numerous insignia inconsistencies with regards to the SS uniforms portrayed. Almost ironically, the author of the otherwise critical reference The Nitpicker's Guide for Classic Trekkers (p. 201), indicated that "[t]his episode had to be a continuity nightmare with all the uniform changes. The creators do an excellent job of keeping everything straight." While these errors can easily be explained away as one culture's application of another culture's ranking system, they are clearly a case of costume production errors, mostly due to scenes being filmed out of sequence.

Many of these errors are demonstrated in the charts above, in the many instances of uniforms sporting mismatched collar insignia and epaulets, which did not pair correctly with one another. Where, for example, the military SS lieutenant, encountered by Kirk and Spock at the start of the episode, wore the should straps for a major, but the collar badges of a second lieutenant. Likewise, SS personnel encountered at the Chancellery Detention Center, specifically the SS interrogator and an SS guard outside the weapons lab, wore commissioned officer's epaulets with an enlisted officer's collar badges.

The perhaps most contradictory example, was in the costuming of the SS-major who arrests Kirk and Spock, who was, in fact, wearing a single, modified version of an SS colonel's collar insignia. Based on surviving script and costume notes, this occurred due to the wardrobe department receiving an order for an SS-major's uniform, but basing it the insignia on a United States major (gold oak leaf) instead of an SS major (four pips). The second error was that, not only was he wearing the wrong insignia, but he wore only a single leaf, paired with SS runes, rather than the otherwise accepted matched-pair of oak leaves, as was later correctly displayed on McCoy's uniform SS-colonel insignia.

In addition to insignia inconsistencies, "Patterns of Force" includes several examples of shapeshifting rank insignias.

The first two occur after both Spock and Kirk steal their first set of SS uniforms. In both cases, the rank insignia change from the original wearer's old rank to completely new ranks when Kirk and Spock emerge wearing the same uniform in subsequent scenes. Most evident was the inclusion of stripes, which were previously absent on the original wear's uniform altogether.

After Kirk stole his uniform from its former Ekosian owner, Kirk's collar badge was changed, appearing as an apparently improvised insignia with consisted of three parallel silver pips with the last pip pinned on top of a pair of silver bars. Though stolen from a second lieutenant, his badge was more reminiscent to that of a first lieutenant (three silver pips placed diagonally alongside a pair of silver bars), but went otherwise unnoticed by numerous Ekosian Nazis. He carried the same rank following his third uniform acquisition, this time with the bottom of three pips appearing in gold, again, his uniform went unnoticed, even while in a room full of top Nazi Party leaders and representatives.

Lastly, in the same time frame, Spock undergoes a grade reduction during his second round in Nazi attire, as he initially exited an automobile as part of the "Führer's Special Documentary Corps" as a sergeant, but is demoted to private between scenes after entering the Ekosian Chancellery.

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