IIRC Andorian space is right next door to Vulcan space. Why don't the Andorians show up more often in Star Trek (vs. Vulcans, Klingons, Romulans, and later Cardassians)?

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    Out of universe, Andorian make up is much more complicated than vulcan, romulan, klingon or even Ferengi makeup. Painting an actor's whole head and hands bright blue takes time and constant touch ups during production. That's a serious damper on the budget and shooting schedule.
    – SteveED
    Nov 21, 2012 at 16:13
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    @Iszi: So are the Romulans, but that didn't stop them from appearing in the shows quite frequently
    – Junuxx
    Nov 21, 2012 at 19:37
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    I'm likely voting as Not Constructive because, well, they just don't. It's one species in the Federation, and there's hundreds more species in the Star Trek continuity that nearly this same question could be asked about...
    – Izkata
    Nov 21, 2012 at 21:11
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    Actually, thinking about it a bit more, I think there may be some confusion as to the political relationships of the species/governments specifically mentioned in the question... (And no, I didn't actually VTC yet..) @zipquincy, could you clarify a bit why you're mentioning those species in particular?
    – Izkata
    Nov 21, 2012 at 21:30
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    I wonder why this question is still open...
    – user931
    Feb 28, 2013 at 3:57

3 Answers 3


Putting the list of appearances from Memory Alpha in (out of universe) chronological order:

  • TOS: 4
  • TAS: 2
  • TOS films: 2
  • TNG: 2
  • DS9: 0
  • VOY: 0
  • ENT: 14
  • DIS 14
  • PIC: 3
  • LD: 32
  • PRO: 9
  • SNW: 3

*As of April 2024, some shows ongoing

From this list it becomes obvious that until ENT, they were rarely seen at all!

Apparently, for a long time they were more like 'token blue aliens' for fun and giggles rather than even a semi-important race with a solid background such as the Vulcans or Klingons. ENT and the excellent role of commander Shran definitely brought them more to the foreground, but there haven't been all that many opportunities to show more Andorians since then.

Notice that they were completely absent from DS9 and Voyager. It is easy to explain their absence in Voyager: there are no Andorians in the Delta Quadrant. As for DS9, I speculate we didn't see any Andorians there because the station already had Bolians as frequent extras and to a lesser degree, Benzites; they were frequently seen in Quark's and on the promenade. These races are also 'token blue aliens', so adding even more blueskins would be unnecessary and possibly confusing for casual viewers.

In the Discovery era tv series, it seems the increased visibility of Andorians has continued. I think we have Commander Shran/Jeffrey Combs to thank for it.

  • I don't mind the blue skin but the antennae look so silly!
    – zipquincy
    Nov 21, 2012 at 17:47
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    Sillier than Ferengi ears?
    – Junuxx
    Nov 21, 2012 at 18:00
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    actually yes. Simply because -- vertebrates don't have antennae. Horns sure, but not antennae
    – zipquincy
    Nov 21, 2012 at 18:23
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    That's an interesting point, though I don't see why it couldn't be different on another planet. And maybe they aren't strictly what a zoologist would call antennae , maybe they're more like ossicones or something like that.
    – Junuxx
    Nov 22, 2012 at 8:56
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    DS9 mentions Andorians on occasion. I'm currently watching season 4, and in season 3 or 4 there's at least one passing mention during a conversation at Quark's. I didn't think anything of it at the time, so I'm not sure which episode, but they are apparently still around.
    – RDFozz
    Sep 6, 2017 at 0:15

Actually, some of the writers of DS9 and Voyager wanted to create Andorian characters, but Rick Berman killed those ideas saying he thought the Andorians looked stupid. When Enterprise came along, the writers pointed out that Andorians were co-founders of the Federation and they needed to have them. Berman said: "Fine, find a way to make them look not stupid." So the make up people came up with the moving antennae which Berman loved.Later in the novels, it was decided Andoria was suffering a virus that was making reproduction difficult and slowly killing the Andorian people.

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    Do you have any references for the quotes?
    – Izkata
    Jan 22, 2014 at 12:36
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    The moving antennae were great comic relief in ENT, which generally had a far more sparse, subtle, deadpan level of humour than the 1990's series. Apr 2, 2018 at 0:06

There's a reason behind it. One of the Enterprise novels "The good that men do" states that the Andorians have 4 genders, all of which are required for reproduction. Because of this, as of the 22nd century, they had a severely declining birth rate for several generations. As far as I know, this problem wasn't completely corrected at any point. Perhaps the Andorians were uncommon because their numbers dwindled to the point they became uncommon in-universe.

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    Was the 4-sex requirement supposed to be some sort of recent catastrophic mutation? Otherwise, it sounds like ignorant writing, since any species that didn't already die out would have behavior that made due with their sexual requirements.
    – Dronz
    Mar 11, 2021 at 18:26

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