Alongside Kirk, Spock, Picard, and Data, Seven of Nine is right up there as one of Star Trek’s most iconic characters.
She’s helped to define Star Trek thanks to her prominent role in not just one, but two Star Trek series, and looks to be pivotal to the franchise’s near future too. So, whether you’re a newcomer or a veteran fan, now’s the perfect time for a refresher on Seven of Nine’s backstory, as well as thoughts on what’s next for her, and a selection of her best episodes. Thankfully, that’s a treat rather than a chore: she holds a prized position on our list of the best Star Trek characters, after all.
Who is Seven of Nine?
Seven of Nine, played by Jeri Ryan since the character’s introduction, is an ex-Borg Starfleet captain who now commands the USS Enterprise-G.
While Seven of Nine has been seen most recently in Star Trek Picard, serving as a main character throughout all three seasons, the character is best known for her role on Voyager. Ryan joined the main cast as Seven of Nine in the two-parter Scoprion, which ended season 3 and began season 4. Her arrival and status as a leading character marked the start of an overall uptick in the quality of Voyager, with Seven bringing a much-needed shake-up.
Across her time in the series, Seven of Nine’s journey focussed on her attempts to regain her humanity after being separated from the Borg collective, and the crew’s attempts to help her. Throughout this, she developed especially close relationships with the EMH, Tuvok, and Captain Janeway, with the last of these being one of the most complex and fascinating bonds in Star Trek history.
She acts as a middle-ground between Spock and Data (simultaneously wanting to reconnect with her humanity and reject it), and like them, she brings a new perspective to her show as the ‘outsider looking in.’ It’s a trope that just works so well in Star Trek.
Seven of Nine’s backstory explained
Before she joined the USS Voyager, Seven of Nine had a tragic backstory that saw her assimilated by the Borg as a young girl aged only four, when her name was still Annika Hansen.
Her parents, Magnus and Erin Hansen were Federation exobiologists who studied the Borg. Starfleet gave the Hansens the USS Raven to begin a deep space research mission, which took them far outside the reaches of known territories. They encountered the Borg, as planned, but their research mission went wrong, and they were all assimilated, with Annika becoming Seven of Nine.
During the two-parter ‘Scorpion’, Seven of Nine is freed from the Borg by the crew of the USS Voyager, and her connection to the Borg is severed. In the time that follows between this and Voyager’s return to Earth, Seven learns a lot about herself and her humanity and begins to form her own identity and conception of who she is and wants to be. She demonstrates a mastery of science and technology and uses this knowledge of astrometrics to get the ship back to Earth more quickly.
After Voyager’s return to Earth, and before the events of Picard season 1, Seven applied to join with the support of Admiral Janeway, but her application was rejected due to her Borg past. Left jaded and hurt, Seven instead joined the peacekeeping vigilante group the Fenris Rangers. As a Fenris Ranger, Seven met Admiral Jean-Luc Picard and formed a friendship with him.
She followed him on a string of adventures, and he eventually gave her a field commission, which was officialized by Starfleet. Between Picard seasons 2 and 3, Seven joined the USS Titan-A as its first officer, serving under Captain Liam Shaw.
Shaw recommender her promotion, and after playing a pivotal role in the destruction of the Borg after the battle on Frontier Day, Tuvok promoted her to the rank of captain. She was given command of the newly christened USS Enterprise-G, making her the latest in a long line of Star Trek captains who’ve commanded the famous ship.
What does the future hold for Seven of Nine?
As the captain of the USS Enterprise-G, we can expect to see a lot more from Seven of Nine.
Mostly, we expect her story to continue in the prospective Picard spin-off series, Star Trek Legacy. Terry Matalas, who was the showrunner for Picard season 3, has been vocal about wanting to create the spin-off show, which will see Seven of Nine put to the test in the captain’s chair.
We’re hoping that Legacy, if it ever comes to fruition, will either take on an episodic format (so we can see Seven dealing with new challenges in each episode) or be a limited series focusing on one unique story.
So, where would you take a series with Seven of Nine as the central character? It would have to avoid the Borg, who are desperately overused at this point. And, really, it would be fun to see Seven dealing with entirely new species, villains, and plot points. It shouldn’t all need to tie back into what we’ve seen before, and that means Legacy can start from an entirely blank slate when it comes to the plot.
Seven of Nine’s best Star Trek episodes
There are plenty of great Star Trek episodes focussing on Seven of Nine, between Voyager and Picard, and we’ve listed the highlights below. If you want to do a Seven of Nine-orientated binge, this is the place to start.
Star Trek’s best Seven of Nine episodes:
- Scorpion parts 1 and 2 (Voyager, season 3, episode 26; season 4 episode 1 )
- The Gift (Voayger, season 4 episode 2)
- The Raven (Voyager, season 4 episode 6)
- One (Voyager, season 4 episode 23)
- Someone to Watch Over Me (Voyager, season 5 episode 21)
- Relativity (Voyager, season 5 episode 24)
- Body and Soul (Voyager, season 7 episode 7)
- Võx (Picard, season 3 episode 9
Our favorites out of these are ‘Someone to Watch Over Me’ and ‘Relativity’. The first is one of the franchise’s most emotionally affecting episodes, as the EMH comes to terms with his unrequited feelings for Seven.
Meanwhile, ‘Relativity’ is perhaps Star Trek’s greatest time-travel adventure (aside from Kirk’s trip to ‘80s San Francisco), and it sees Seven repeatedly going back and forth through time to prevent a bomb being planted on Voyager before its maiden voyage. Both feature Seven in a leading role, at her very best, and Jeri Ryan absolutely shines.
That’s it on Seven of Nine. For more on Star Trek, check out our guide to the complete Star Trek timeline and the best way to watch the Star Trek movies in order. Or, check out our guide to the Strange New Worlds season 3 release date and see our thoughts on which Star Trek captain would win in a zombie apocalypse.