Living on the Galaxy's Edge: The Edosians
The Edosians are a peaceful, polytheistic race from the planet Edos, located on the outer rim of the Milky Way galaxy.
Though not part of it, they have formed a loose alliance with the Federation, coming under its agreements in trade, science, and emergency aid. There has even been a decorated Edosian in Starfleet
Edosians are a tripodal species, with three legs, three arms, and three digits on each hand and foot. Their skin is orange, with bony features underneath. Edosians have an extremely long life cycle.
Edos is a planet in the Triangulum constellation, on the edge of the Milky Way galaxy. It serves as a jumping-off point for science teams studying the great energy barrier beyond the rim. It is home to plant life, such as the Edosian orchid, and sea life including the Edosian suckerfish.
Edosians are a peaceful species, having never engaged in a war. They worship many gods. All beings on Edos are equal – there are no social castes or class levels.
Due to their long life cycles, Edosians often limit families to just one child. This makes them precious, and Edosian families are extremely close. They also keep detailed ancestral records, dating back for centuries, sometimes even millennia.
Edosian technology is on the same level as that of Earth. Its architectural style favors function over aesthetics. Edosians pass on family and cultural history through story-songs. The sessica, similar to the flute, is one Edosian instrument.
An Edosian named Arex served as navigator on the U.S.S. Enterprise from 2269-2270, replacing Pavel Chekov, who had been a student of his at Starfleet Academy many years prior.
Though he served as space navigation instructor at the Academy, Arex didn’t attend. He first spent 10 years in the merchant space fleet. He entered Starfleet as a technician and worked his way up to the rank of Lieutenant. Arex first became an officer through a “field commission” during a battle with the Klingons, where he took command of his cruiser after all the officers were killed. He surprised the Klingon ship, disabled her, and brought her to face Federation charges. By the time he served on the Enterprise, Arex was known as the best navigator in the fleet.
During his time in Starfleet, he earned three decorations for bravery and held a Citation for Conspicuous Valor.
On the Enterprise, Arex proved to be a versatile crewman, sometimes manning the science station or the conn. In an emergency, he could even operate the helm-navigation console alone, thanks to his multiple limbs.
Much of the flora and fauna of Edos was used by other cultures for medicinal purposes. For example, the Edosian slug, a mollusk native to the planet, was used in the 22nd century by Dr. Phlox, chief medical officer on the Enterprise NX-01. Dr. Phlox also made medicinal use of the Edosian suckerfish.
Because of its similarity to the catfish, when Enterprise-D commander William Riker was playing Enterprise NX-01 chef in the holodeck, he considered using the Edosian suckerfish as a stand-in for a meal.
The Edosian orchid was used in gardens throughout the galaxy, including at the Cardassian embassy on Romulus. The plant produces beautiful flowers, but they are extremely poisonous.
Edosians were introduced to the Star Trek universe with Lt. Arex in Star Trek: The Animated Series in 1973. Though most of the original show’s cast returned to lend their voices to their cartoon counterparts, the budget didn’t allow for all of them, and Walter Koenig’s Chekov was cut from TAS. Instead, Arex was created as a semi-regular character and James Doohan did double duty as the voice of Scotty and Arex (as well as other, smaller roles throughout the run.
Arex was in almost every episode, but he wasn’t given much background – not even a first name. His personal history first appeared in a newsletter written by Gene Roddenberry and D.C. Fontana in 1973. Later, a biography of Arex was published in a 1974 catalog provided by Lincoln Enterprises, the Star Trek merchandising company run by Majel Barrett.
In April 2018, Arex earned another honor. To commemorate the 45th anniversary of TAS, Hallmark announced a convention-exclusive ornament set of Arex and fellow TAS alien, M’Ress.
Robin Berla Meyers is a NYC-based writer and TV producer specializing in pop and geek culture. Her work has been seen all over the world, on things like BBC America, AMC, and The Verge. Her mom introduced her to Trek when she was 3 years old, and she never stopped watching.