|Affiliation||United Federation of Planets
|Posting||Tactical officer and
chief of security,
|Rank||Lieutenant later promoted to Lieutenant commander|
|Portrayed by||Tim Russ|
Tuvok (pronounced /ˈtuːvɒk/), a Vulcan played by Tim Russ, is a character on the television series Star Trek: Voyager where he serves as the ship's chief of security as well as being its chief tactical officer.
Tuvok was born in the mid-23rd century on Vulcanis, a lunar colony belonging to the Vulcan people. As a teenager Tuvok fell in love with Jara, the daughter of a Terrelian diplomat. Jara did not return his affections. He was expelled from school. His parents sent him to study then with a Vulcan master to learn to control his emotions.
Tuvok attended Starfleet Academy in San Francisco. Upon graduation, he was commissioned an Ensign at age 29, serving as Junior Science Officer on the USS Excelsior, under Captain Hikaru Sulu (seen in the episode "Flashback").
During his early service with Starfleet, Tuvok became increasingly uncomfortable associating with non-Vulcans, and he resigned his Starfleet commission in 2298 to pursue his people's kohlinar regimen of true non-emotion. He went into pon farr six years later, leading to his marriage to T'Pel, and began a family.
Eighty years later, after much self-examination, Tuvok rejoined Starfleet as a training instructor at Starfleet Academy. His return to Starfleet was marked by a maturity and a reconsideration of the benefits service provided. After a few years teaching cadets, Tuvok was briefly assigned to the USS Billings under Captain Kathryn Janeway, until both Janeway and Tuvok were assigned to the USS Wyoming and then the Intrepid-class starship USS Voyager, as Captain (Janeway) and Security & Tactical Officer (Tuvok).
In 2371, Tuvok was assigned to infiltrate the Maquis organization aboard Chakotay's Maquis vessel. During the mission, Tuvok's identity was uncovered by a Maquis intelligence agent, who uses Tuvok as a laboratory specimen for mind-control experiments. While Tuvok was conscious throughout the experiments, the agent wiped his memory when he had finished, ensuring that Tuvok was unable to remember any details. Following the ordeal, Tuvok was released back amongst the Maquis. During an incident involving the Maquis ship and the USS Voyager, both vessels were unwillingly transported to the Delta Quadrant by the enigmatic Caretaker. When the Maquis ship was destroyed by crashing into a Kazon ship to save the USS Voyager , Tuvok was transported off the ship with a handful of other survivors, and resumed his duties as Security & Tactical Officer.
At that time, Voyager also picked up two Delta Quadrant natives, Neelix, a Talaxian, and his girlfriend Kes, from Ocampa. Tuvok recognized Kes' psionic abilities and helped her develop them. Tuvok learned to tolerate Neelix's overly friendly and emotional behavior. Later, a transporter accident fused Tuvok and Neelix together into a new humanoid appropriately named "Tuvix". They were eventually restored to their individual forms under the orders of Captain Janeway, using a procedure devised by the EMH and chief engineer B'Elanna Torres. Tuvok still had issues with Neelix after the experience and many of them are raised again in the episode "Riddles". The two eventually became friends, though it was more apparent from Neelix's end.
At the opening of the 4th season episode "Revulsion", relatively dated 2374, Tuvok was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Commander after he was demoted during the first season episode "Prime Factors". He frequently is referred to as "Lieutenant" even though he wears Lieutenant Commander rank insignia. (See the section "Tuvok's Rank" below for an explanation.)
It is learned during the final episode of the series that Tuvok suffers from a degenerative neurological disease, which can only be cured by undergoing a mind-meld with a family member. In 2377, he was still well enough to perform his duties. However, in his elderly years, the disease finally ravaged Tuvok's mind. However, in order to save Tuvok from this inevitable future, Captain Janeway's future-self changed history, by finding a way to return the Voyager crew to the Alpha Quadrant back in 2378, the time before his disease worsened.
In the Star Trek: Titan novel series, Tuvok joins William Riker on the USS Titan as tactical officer, leaving Voyager. His wife joins him.
A full Vulcan, Tuvok has a complex personality, with internal conflict. Despite his undergoing the Kolinahr, there is a fair amount of evidence to suggest that he never entirely gained emotional control, and he feels bitterness over his Vulcan heritage. He is also shown to exhibit subdued moments of annoyance, anger (mostly directed towards Neelix, whose gregarious personality is often at odds with Tuvok's Vulcan stoicism), self-doubt and even sarcasm.
Despite this internal conflict, he is shown on numerous occasions to be capable of great nobility and altruism.
T'Pel is the wife of Tuvok. They married in 2304. They have three sons and one daughter named Azil. She is featured in the Voyager episodes "Persistence of Vision" and "Bliss", both times when Tuvok is hallucinating. A holographic version of T'Pel is featured in "Body and Soul". She is played by actress Marva Hicks.
Tuvok's initial rank aboard Voyager has been the subject of some debate. From the beginning of the series Tuvok was meant to be a Lieutenant, and is referred to as such in the series, both in the opening titles and dialogue. However in the pilot episode "Caretaker" he was given the rank pips of a Lieutenant Commander - two solid, one hollow. This was in fact a wardrobe error. During production of the 12th episode of the first season, "Cathexis", the mistake with Tuvok's rank was spotted and corrected. At the same time it was also evidently decided to "demote" Paris and Torres, both to Lieutenant Junior Grade. (Cashiered former Starfleet officer Tom Paris was given the rank of Lieutenant and Maquis crewmember B'Elanna Torres the rank of Lieutenant Junior Grade at the end of the pilot episode "Caretaker", though Torres is seemingly promoted to Lieutenant at the end of the following episode, "Parallax", when she is made Chief Engineer). These "demotions" were probably undertaken to maintain a reasonable chain of command, and possibly because it was felt they should not hold the same rank as one of Captain Janeway's trusted and most senior officers. As a result during the episode "Cathexis" there are several continuity errors as Tuvok and Paris' ranks change back and forth due to the shooting schedule; they retain their original ranks for the sequences set on the bridge, but the revised ones are shown in all other scenes. Torres' rank pin is revised in all her scenes, again a result of the shooting schedule.
As mentioned above, it could be inferred from a story point of view that Tuvok and Torres are demoted as a result of their actions in the previous episode, "Prime Factors", where they deliberately undermine Captain Janeway's authority and are summarily disciplined, though any demotions are never seen or referred to onscreen. While plausible, this theory does not account for the continuity errors in the following episode or the change in Paris' rank, though. In the episode "Revulsion", where Tuvok receives his onscreen promotion to Lieutenant Commander, there is no reference to any prior demotion.
The Mirror Tuvok appears in the Star Trek: Deep Space Nine third season episode "Through the Looking Glass" as a member of the Rebellion.