The Evolution of the Vidiian Emblem
by Jörg Hillebrand, Bernd Schneider and Brad Wilder
Appearances of the EmblemAddendum: Vidiian Letters
The Vidiian emblem was seen in only four Voyager episodes altogether. Although there are variations of the logo, the basic design seems to be consistent from the beginning. The second edition of the Star Trek Encyclopedia shows all details of the logo. The better resolved reproduction for the Fact Files was probably made from the same template but was turned 180 degrees (which we fixed, assuming that the Encyclopedia shows the originally intended orientation).
It consists of six vertical, pointed and multiply folded shapes, which partially overlap. All elements are placed on a red diamond with a thick black border. Around the logo (on the black frame) we can see Vidiian characters, which exhibit a clear similarity to the central elements of the emblem. In the center of the logo there is a gray sphere with a 3D effect, with the light apparently coming from the upper left. It is important that the two innermost pointed shapes overlap each other. The left figure is above the right one.
Appearances of the Emblem
"Phage" is the first episode to feature the Vidiians. Several variations of their emblem are visible. Already very early in the episode, we can see stickers with the logo, probably exactly as in the Encyclopedia, on the walls of the Vidiian corridors.
The door switch to the Vidiian laboratory also consists of the Vidiian logo, from which the black diamond with the Vidiian characters was omitted. The entire door switch is three-dimensional, so the gray circle in the center of the logo is an actual hemisphere that acts as a door knob. However, the door knob was placed upside down because the right inner figure overlaps the left one, not the other way round, as it is usually the case.
Inside the lab there are several consoles, albeit very blurred, with the Vidiian logo in a simplified form. We will see these variants better in "Faces". Here, the Vidiian logo appears completely in red, as well as lying on its side, in yellow with a gray circle in the middle.
There is also an interesting variant of the logo, which appears several times as a display on the upper consoles. This variant consists of nine instead of six vertical, tapered shapes. The central shape and the two inwardly facing ones are red, while the rest are yellow and orange. We can see the gray sphere in the center, but here the simulated light falls on the upper right area.
This episode too shows several variants of the logo. First, in Sulan's laboratory, we see the last mentioned large version of the logo with nine vertical shapes. The displays from "Phage" were reused.
In the Vidiian prison cell, the logo from the Encyclopedia appears in various places. For example, on the prison guard's console, there are stickers with the logo just as in the book, including the Vidiian characters. We can also see that the light falls on the upper left area of the sphere and that the left middle figure overlaps the right one.
On the wall behind this console, the logo appears as a three-dimensional wall decoration. The black diamond with the Vidiian letters is missing again. But it can also be seen that the left middle shape is above the right one. The central hemisphere, which is above all the vertical shapes, is gray, as in the two-dimensional model. The green illuminated wall takes up the logo design again, but not all details are included.
This episode shows a close-up of a console with Vidiian characters for the first time. These characteristic signs should still be reused at least three times in later episodes, without a Vidiian context.
On one of these consoles the Vidiian logo, as represented in the Encyclopedia, is again shown without the black diamond and without Vidiian letters and is rotated 90 degrees to the right. On the right, we can see the monochrome red version of the logo, which already appeared in "Phage". However, it is placed upside down, which can be seen on the light incident on the central ball and the position of the left vertical shape (not above but below the right shape).
The door switch from "Phage" can also be seen briefly in Sulan's lab.
It is almost impossible to recognize, but the Vidiian logo appears as a sticker, just as in the Encyclopedia, on Vidiian cases for stolen organs.
For the first time on a Vidiian console, we can see the full Vidiian logo (with the characters on both sides). However, as can be seen in the shadow cast on the ball and the position of the two central vertical shapes, the logo was turned upside down here.
In further takes of Vidiian consoles the characters of this race are clearly visible.
Four years later, the Vidiian logo appears for the last time. When Kes from the future contacts the Vidiians, the large Vidiian logo with nine vertical shapes can be seen in the background, as it was shown for the first time in "Phage". Here, it is noticeable that the colors were changed, and appear very pale. Only the two outer shapes are red, all other seven shapes are pale yellow. The shadow on the central ball is also different, the light falls from the top right and the ball also seems to be reddish.
More than 20 years later, the Vidiian emblem can be spotted on a display in the genetic lab on Noble Isle in PRO: "Masquerade". We can't identify any details, but the diamond shape gives it away. All other symbols on the display are plain green too, so this is not a new variation but just a styling choice.
Addendum: Vidiian Letters
There are three more episodes with Vidiian letters, although they are not meant to belong to this race.
In "Demon", Neelix's book "Selected Works of Jirex" has Vidiian writing on the cover. The book was originally made for TNG: "The Inner Light", so it was by no means already printed with the Vidiian letters. The letters must therefore have been added for "Demon". Why are Vidiian writing on a book by a Talaxian author? Were the letters of the two races mixed up here?
We can also see Vidiian letters on the display of Noss's binoculars in VOY: "Gravity", thousands of light-years away from Vidiian space.
A classic re-use of the letters is in ENT: "Stigma". We can see characteristic Vidiian letters in several places in the central building on Dekendi III.