Phlox (ENT-01-02)
Phlox (ENT-06)

Though the Denobulan Dr. Phlox claimed that he found it somewhat daunting to socialize with the almost-entirely human Enterprise NX-01 crew, he soon proved quite adept at it, striking up friendships with Crewman Elizabeth Cutler,[4] Ensign Hoshi Sato,[2] and fellow non-human Sub-Commander T’Pol.[2] In fact, Phlox was initially worried that Cutler had a romantic interest in him. Though his suspicions eventually proved true, Cutler only wanted to be friends, and she and Phlox enjoyed taking in the occasional movie together.[4] Phlox was also key in helping the initially jittery Sato realize that she belonged on Enterprise. He assisted her in caring for a sickly slug creature,[2] and began teaching her Denobulan.[4] The aloof T’Pol was something of a challenge, even for the genial doctor, but she and Phlox shared several meals, and she didn’t even seem to mind when Phlox picked errant food off of her plate.[2] Phlox has another human friend in regular correspondent Dr. Jeremy Lucas, a human colleague from the Interspecies Medical Exchange. Lucas was the first human serving on Phlox’s homeworld of Denobula, and as he helped Phlox get settled in San Francisco, Phlox returned the favor.[4]

Like other Denobulans, Phlox only required six days of sleep every year. He claimed, however, that two days can be sufficient. Phlox was grumpy and disoriented if his hibernation was interrupted, as he demonstrated when Cutler and T’Pol woke him up, seeking assistance in treating Ensign Travis Mayweather.[6]

As a child, Phlox, like many young Denobulans, was regaled with tales of the “evil Antarans,” which caused him to have nightmares. The Antarans and the Denobulans had been to war on several occasions, and much animosity and hatred still existed between the two species in the 2150s. In fact, young Phlox’s grandmother wouldn’t allow him to go on a trip to a nearby arboreal planet because it was “tainted” by Antarans. The adult Phlox was determined not to raise his children as he was raised, and taught them to embrace other cultures.[9]

Phlox got more mail than anyone else on Enterprise,[4] and had three wives (in turn, according to Denobulan custom, they each had two other husbands). This was the norm for his people, who apparently had very complex mating rituals. Though Phlox’s work kept him from seeing his family very often, he did get the opportunity to see one of his wives, Feezal, when she came aboard Enterprise to assist in installing a neutron microscope. Phlox had five children, and his two daughters followed in his footsteps: one was a surgeon, the other a biochemist. His eldest son was a potter. Phlox was somewhat estranged from his two younger sons; Mettas, the youngest, held archaic, anti-Antaran beliefs.[9]

Though Denobulans typically did not like to be touched, Phlox did his best to overcome his cultural inhibitions (ENT-). In fact, Phlox was fascinated with human culture, and is particularly enamored of Earth cuisine—egg drop soup,[1] blueberry pancakes (ENT-) and potatoes (ENT-) were a few of the dishes he enjoyed.

His menagerie of creatures included an Altarian marsupial (ENT-), an osmotic eel, Regulan blood worms[1] and a Pyrithian bat.[8] Though he found Captain Jonathan Archer‘s relationship with his canine, Porthos, amusing, Phlox admitted that he occasionally spoke to his bat.[8] Other odd rituals included cleaning his extra-long tongue and using his toenail clippings as food for his creatures.[8]

Though the doctor proved his value as a physician and crewmember numerous times, Phlox was not always such an assured medical professional. Not long after he became a physician, he was part of a medical team sent to a cargo ship orbiting his homeworld. An explosion had occurred on the ship, and there were seventeen bodies on the bridge. The sight of so many dead people left Phlox shaken and disturbed.[7] He also claimed that he was once nearly overwhelmed by 50 patients in a refugee camp on Matalas (ENT-). Phlox’s skills as a physician were also put to the test when he was infected by nanoprobes from some mysterious cybernetic beings. Luckily, he managed to find a cure before he was completely assimilated, although the procedure would likely prove fatal to non-Denobulans.[10]

Still, he continued to welcome adventure, and was especially intrigued by alien cultures. He jumped at the chance to observe a culture other than humanity when he spent the night with the alien pilgrims who were following the Great Plume of Agosoria. In true Phlox fashion, he found his visit with the pilgrims, which included four hours of ritual prayer and a string of body-purifying exercises, “mesmerizing.”[3]

Despite his genial nature, Phlox always stood up for what he believed in, even if it brought him into conflict with other officers. He refused to let Lieutenant Malcolm Reed experiment on a strange, symbiotic creature that took over Enterprise‘s Cargo Bay Two, saying that it exhibited all the signs of being an intelligent lifeform.[5] He also nearly withheld his findings on the Menk/Valakian situation from Captain Archer, fearing that the captain would interfere with the natural cycle of evolution. Phlox trusted Archer to make the right decision, however, and gained a new respect for his captain.[4] When the Enterprise received orders to venture into the Delphic Expanse, Phlox opted to stay aboard, citing his loyalty to Archer.

Though Phlox found humans fairly simplistic anatomically, he liked their “charming optimism,” and has said of his time on Enterprise, “Every moment’s been an adventure for me. Humans are so unpredictable.”

Portrayed by John Billingsley.


Wednesday, June 30th, 2010 Enterprise, Library, Personnel

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