The Movember Foundation aims to raise awareness of men’s health issues including suicide prevention and cancer support. Through fund-raising and charity efforts, they hope to change the face of men’s health. One way to show support is to grow a bit of facial fuzz during the month of November. Soul patch? Glorious Klingon beard? Muttonchops, anyone?
As we look at the Star Trek universe, there are many examples of facial hair across the galaxy. Each species and, indeed, each individual, has their own preferences. Most Tellarites are seen on screen with full-length beards. Many Klingons seem to prefer it as well, including our favorite Klingon, Worf.
One of the easiest to spot examples of “good-beardedness” is Commander William Riker from The Next Generation series and accompanying movies. Beginning with the second season of TNG, Will sported a beard for over a decade on the small and large screen. He shaved it during Star Trek: Insurrection much to Troi’s delight, who said “Yuck!” when he kissed her.
In the Mirror Universe, Spock wore a moustache and goatee. Actually, in the different visits to and from that universe, we see multiple characters with facial hair than their normal counterparts from our reality don’t have. Is there something about the forces of evil that push the villainous to wear a beard? Probably not. Most likely it’s just a visual cue to the audience that this isn’t your normal Spock or Bashir.
Benjamin Sisko grew a Van Dyke beard during his tenure aboard Deep Space Nine. His son, Jake, commented that he liked it. We have to agree!
And don’t even get us started on Doctor Leonard McCoy! In Star Trek: The Motion Picture, he was forced out of retirement and returned to the Enterprise with what looked like an outfit and facial hair straight from the 1970s. To be fair, they released the movie in 1979 – so, yeah, kind of!