In the Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes "Encounter at Farpoint" and "Lonely Among Us", we see guys in miniskirts:

TNG guy in miniskirt

Did those miniskirts inspire Zapp Branigan's outfit?

Zapp Brannigan

  • Do you have some screenshots you can add demonstrating this? I have no memory of them ever wearing skirts. Jun 29 '12 at 21:03
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  • Sorry, this is probably not a duplicate, after all. Ignore the VTC. @JackBNimble: See the other question above.
    – bitmask
    Jun 29 '12 at 21:05
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    This was two separate questions, 1) What's with the skirt in Star Trek? and 2) Is Zapp Brannigan's uniform based on it? The former is definitely a duplicate. Revised it to only ask about Zapp Brannigan.
    – user366
    Jun 29 '12 at 21:15
  • Thanks @MarkTrapp that's probably for the best.
    – AncientSwordRage
    Jun 29 '12 at 21:59

I always thought they were a shout-out to the outfit worn by classic comic book character Magnus: Robot Fighter. Right down to the white boots!

Magnus: Robot Fighter 4 back cover

Magnus: Robot Fighter

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    Those robots even resemble the robots from Futurama!
    – Kalamane
    Jul 5 '12 at 18:18

The character Zapp Brannigan was based on Star Trek's Starship captain James T. Kirk and the actor who plays him: William Shatner. He is also said to be based on comic book hero Flash Gordon. The idea of his uniform was to copy that of the women on the USS Enterprise (the Star Trek starship).

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    Do you have a reference that the costume wasn't a reference to the men?
    – AncientSwordRage
    Jul 1 '12 at 9:55
  • @DavRob60 Uhura wasn't the only woman on the Enterprise. There was the nurse, and a number of enlisted or ensign women coming to Kirk for his <s>autograph</s> signature on (presumably) daily reports/orders/etc.
    – Kevin
    Jul 1 '12 at 15:10
  • @AncientSwordRage There is a reference from the show's creators, but I can't find the link.
    – AStopher
    May 2 '17 at 21:08

The uniforms were drawn, or 'made', to resemble that of James T. Kirk in Star Trek (mostly Enterprise) but another reason is purely for the humour embedded in the sight of a grown man wearing a miniskirt.


His not wearing pants is based on Magnus: Robot Fighter, but Zapp himself is based on James T. Kirk. However, the creators say he is based more on the actor, William Shatner, than on Kirk. Either way, that guy has swag!


I suspect that the standard DOOP uniform isn't necessarily anything like what Zapp Brannigan chooses to wear. After all, he is a lecher, braggart, and narcissist.

DOOP combat uniform

This is obviously a combat uniform instead of a dress uniform, but captains of modern naval ships don't wear dress whites while on deck anyway. And the basic styles and cuts are the same, just finer cloths are used with more ornament (braids, brocades, etc).

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    Do you have any references that indicate what a standard DOOP uniform looks like?
    – user1027
    Jul 5 '12 at 20:16
  • Also we see in S1:Ep4 "Loves Labours Lost in Space" that Brannigan's men have essentially the same uniform as him. Here is a link to a screenshot LINK
    – Dason
    Jul 16 '12 at 22:30

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