I have noticed, floating about the fan-o-sphere, a lot of renewed interest in original-series Star Trek (aka ST:TOS) as a result of the new movie (aka ST:
AOS). One of the characters who has been catching a lot of the interest is Uhura, who was originated by Nichelle Nichols and is played by Zoe Saldana in
I am not about to write a comprehensive history of the character -- that is what Memory Alpha is for. (Original timeline Uhura
, Reboot timeline Uhura
But here are some things you might want to know about her, going in, if you're going to write some fiction about her:
1. She's not African-American. She's from the United States of Africa and grew up speaking Swahili. The character is semi-established as identifying herself as Bantu (by which I mean "Gene Roddenberry said she was Bantu, but there's no canon about it that I know of.")
2. She's highly technical. Communications Officer is not just a glorified phone operator; she can rewire that whole damn board from scratch and make it dance a jig if she wants to.
3. She can also fly the ship. Better than you.
4. If you ever get trapped in a mirror universe and have to wear a skimpy-ass costume and deal with sexism so explicit that the only way to get ahead is to have sex with male officers, remember that Uhura, despite being completely freaked the hell out by the situation (WOULDN'T YOU BE? I WOULD. OH MY GOD), backhanded an evil Sulu right across the chops and then threatened to knife him.
5. She can sing well, and often does, to entertain or comfort fellow crewmembers. Or to tease Spock.