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On Star Trek TNG And DS9, Lwaxana Troi Was...An Acquired Taste

And that goes double for her fashion sense.

Even the most casual viewer of Star Trek: The Next Generation has got to remember Lwaxana Troi. She was loud and opinionated and talked far more than she listened (for example, perpetrating the running non-joke of addressing the security chief as "Mr. Woof"). She is overtly sexual, which given her age is refreshing on paper but often cringe-worthy when, in practice, her ardor goes unreciprocated. And, unlike her daughter Deanna, she is fully Betazoid, which means she can read minds as well as emotions; coupled with her lack of discretion, this leads to many, many awkward moments.

And then there was her fashion sense.

Don't get me wrong; I've come to like Lwaxana as a character. She has a lot more personality than much of the vanilla surrounding her on TNG, and in fact was the center of two moving episodes. First, there's TNG's "Half A Life," in which she falls in love with a man who's expected to submit to ritual euthanasia once he reaches a certain age, which is imminent; it's one of the more successful "makes you think" episodes the series had to offer. Later, on DS9, her kindness to Odo when he's at his most vulnerable both physically and emotionally is a lovely high point for the character. In the end, I think I could have hung with Lwaxana, but it would have been a bumpy ride -- and that'd be if I'd kept my eyes closed. In no particular order, let's visit a selection of the fashion atrocities she visited upon the galaxy.

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The quality's obviously not great, but I wanted to include this one because the shark-fin-shaped swath of fabric removed from the dress is actually not unique to this dress:

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Plus I like to think the Ferengi pictured is in the process of making a citizen's fashion arrest. "You may have blinded me, ma'am, but I can save others from the same fate."

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I freely admit I don't understand this one at all, but the most baffling part is the cord draped down and around the bazooms. It's like she's velvet-roped her boobs off, which could make sense if the character weren't always trying to get both legs over.

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I captioned this photo "I Don't Even," and I stand by that. It's like she hired an eight-year-old somewhat proficient at crafts to create this look. Also, is that a headband? Is it macramé-d? It looks thick and heavy enough to suppress her telepathic abilities -- which, given the shock and fear that must go through people's minds when they get a good look at her, might actually be for the best.

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I call this look "Insanegerous Liaisons."

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When a live plant on your arm isn't in the top three craziest things about your outfit, people WILL stare incredulously.

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I never understand these patterns that look like a cloud of poison gas slowly spreading, but they're at least familiar. Pairing that wig's shade of red with it, however, is a visual hate crime and goes a long way to explain why Odo ends up dissolved into a pile of goo at Lwaxana's feet.

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Obviously, if you've got frottage with a dude in a tight uniform on the brain, you should don a shower curtain to cover up what's going on downstairs. It's the tasteful thing to do!

Oh, and I forgot one thing!

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Betazoid tradition dictates marriage ceremonies be conducted in the altogether. Is the reason for this that too high a percentage of the populace went blind from viewing hiddy wedding dresses? YOU TELL ME.