We’re getting close to the end, ladies and gentlemen. This week, I’ll show you and Odin just who won spot No. 2 and why.
(Find out who got the second spot after the jump)
Reginald Barclay (TNG, First Contact, VOY)
Reg couldn’t be reached for comment on being named No. 2 because he has a paralyzing fear of public speaking. When he saw me coming towards him with a holo-corder he fled into the nearest holo-deck and refused to come out for a week. And you know what? That is exactly why we love him. Because of his overwhelming neuroses.
Trekkies first encountered Lt. Reginald Barclay III in TNG’s third season in an episode called “Hollow Pursuits.” Reg had been driving Geordi crazy with his absent minded and inconsistent performance in engineering. The whole crew saw Barclay as an outcast, and even gave him the nickname “Broccoli” which Picard accidentally called him to his face once. It isn’t long before we found out that Reg is suffering from Holo-addiction because of his enormous social anxiety. Reg continues to make appearances throughout the run of TNG in memorable episodes like “Realm of Fear,” where he develops transporter phobia; “The Nth Degree,” where he becomes linked with the Enterprise computer; and of course, “Genesis,” where he de-evolves into a spider. Reg was so loved by Trekkies that he even made a sweaty palmed, stuttering cameo in First Contact, fawning over Zefram Cochrane. He also became a semi-regular in the last few seasons of Voyager.
Starfleet officers can often be hard to identify with. They seem to be what we all wish to be one day. Sometimes they can appear almost too good. We love Reg because he is highly flawed and gives us nerds a character to latch on to who is riddled with as much anxiety as we are. Who among us hasn’t wished there were holo-decks to hide in so we can book ourselves a few hours with Karen Gillan? And all the while, Reg remains a source of entertainment and comic relief.
So let’s wish Reg congratulations, but in a quiet, calm voice without making any sudden movements. Reg, you remind us that there are still hopelessly awkward nerds in the 24th century, and for that, we thank you!