Though Klingons were a major antagonistic force in “Star Trek: The Original Series,” Klingon characters and their unique culture weren’t really expanded on until “Star Trek: The Next Generation.” On that series, Michael Dorn’s Worf, the first Klingon member of Starfleet, helped bridge the massive cultural gaps between humans and Klingons. There are a few decent Klingon episodes on “Next Generation,” but “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine” really explored the Klingon Empire’s influence on the rest of the quadrant and introduced fans to Martok, who met Worf while captured by the Jem’hadar and befriended his fellow warrior. Later episodes show his unusual (by human standards) romance with his wife Sirella (Shannon Cochran) and a moment of relatable weakness when he’s asked to command an attack on the Jem’hadar after his imprisonment. Martok is the most fleshed-out Klingon in the entire franchise save for Worf, and he’s one honorable dude.
Perhaps his most endearing moment on the series is when he sees Trill science officer Jadzia Dax (Terry Farrell) for the first time and calls her by the name of Dax’s former host, Curzon. “Curzon, my old friend!” he shouts as he grabs her in a hug, and she gently corrects him that her name is Jadzia now. “Jadzia, my old friend!” he laughs, immediately accepting her and honoring her.
Martok eventually becomes the Chancellor of the Klingon empire when Worf kills the previous chancellor, Gowron (Robert O’Reilly). As Chancellor, Martok helps Captain Sisko and the Federation win the Dominion War, meaning he’s definitely headed to the Klingon Valhalla, Sto’vo’kor.