Star Trek: Voyager hit a home run with Lon Suder

Star Trek: Voyager really explored some dark avenues with Lon Suder

LA Premiere Of HBO's "Deadwood" - Arrivals
LA Premiere Of HBO's "Deadwood" - Arrivals / Frazer Harrison/GettyImages

Star Trek: Voyager made a bold decision to create and utilize the Lon Suder character, played marvelously by one of the most fantastic actors of all time; Brad Dourif. Many fans will know him as the voice actor of the famed Chucky character from the Child's Play/Chucky franchise. A role that he's played from its inception in 1988, all the way up until currently with the series on Peacock.

He's also been in the Alien franchise, featuring in the fourth film, Alien Resurrection, as well as the Lord of the Rings franchise. He's also played numerous great one-off characters in television shows for decades. He's an iconic actor, and you've likely seen something he's done.

Yet, to Star Trek fans, Dourif will always be Lon Suder, the psychopath on the U.S.S. Voyager. Originally a member of the Maquis, Suder joins the Voyager crew when the ship arrives in the Delta Quadrant. For nearly a year and a half, Suder reigns in his violent tendencies, but eventually, he ends up murdering another crew member, causing Tuvok to volunteer to mind-meld with Suder in an attempt to help cure him of his urges. It goes badly but it does create a wonderfully unique character and arc that Star Trek really has never explored before or sense.

Suder from that point on, starts to work hard to suppress his urges and desires while remaining loyal to the Voyager crew, despite being on restricted duty and house arrest. He'd eventually become instrumental in saving the crew and helping them re-take the ship after Seska and the Kazon stranded the crew.

In doing so, however, he returns to his violent ways and kills nearly a dozen Kazon soldiers on his own before ultimately being shot down. He would later be remembered fondly by some of the crew, who saw the man he was, and the man he was hoping to be.

Suder remains a complex figure, a murderer redeemed in death, that poses a question; can one truly be forgiven for truly heinous crimes? Voyager stops short of answering that question, and instead let a handful of characters pay their respects to Suder for his act of bravery and loyalty. It remains to this day one of the most compelling three-episode arcs a Trek character has ever had.