Star Trek’s Romulans Are Telepathic

Star Trek’s Romulans are psychic, but cultural barriers mean they’ve never enhanced their full potential… yet. The Romulans have been a perpetual thorn in the side of the United Federation of Planets. Usually portrayed as deceitful and manipulative, the Romulans are to be feared – yet they possess abilities unknown to even them. In Star Trek: Nero #2, the titular villain discovers that they, like their Vulcan cousins, possess telepathic abilities.

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Introduced in the first season of the classic Star Trek, the Romulans have gone on to become one of the franchise’s most iconic races. When the Vulcan people began embracing Surak’s philosophy of logic, a group that disagreed broke away, embarking for a new star system. Over time, these Vulcan dissidents became the Romulans. They have been antagonists to the Federation numerous times – yet ironically it is because of the Romulans that the Federation exists in the first place. During the Earth-Romulan War of the 2150s, the Vulcans, Andorians and Tellarites aided Earth. When the dust settled, they began the Federation as a measure to prevent another war. Since then, the Romulans have continually tested their boundaries, antagonizing the Federation just short of starting another war. Nero, the villain of 2009’s Star Trek film, is one of the best known Romulans – and he made a discovery about his people that could change the balance of galactic power.

Nero Discovered Romulan Telepathy

star trek nero romulan

Star Trek: Nero #2 is written by Mike Johnson and Tim Jones from a story by Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman, and drawn by David Messina. Shortly after attacking the USS Kelvin, Nero and his ship are intercepted by a squadron of Klingons, who haul him and his crew to Rura Penthe, a prison moon. Over the next two decades, they torture Nero, attempting to pry from him the secrets of his ship the Narada. To dull the pain, Nero begins taking psychotropic drugs, which help open his mind. He reaches out and is able to communicate with his crew telepathically. Shortly before he breaks free, Nero realizes that Romulans don’t lack the psychic abilities of their Vulcan cousins – they’ve just allowed them to atrophy.

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Romulans Could Awaken Their Telepathy At Any Time

star trek nero romulans psychic telepathic

The Vulcans have displayed telepathic abilities throughout Star Trek‘s 57-year history, most notably through the mind meld, but their Romulan cousins have shown no such powers. The show has never explained why the Romulans do not use their latent psychic abilities, but it feels like a missed opportunity – especially for a species built on conquest and expansion. The Romulans, should they follow Nero’s example, would become even more fearsome if they could hone their telepathic powers. The Vulcans use their abilities in a (generally) more benevolent fashion, but the Romulans would be ruthless with them. They could use mind melds to forcefully extract information from prisoners. Indeed, mind melds, if not done properly, can traumatize someone, and it stands to reason the Romulans will not be as kind as the Vulcans. Furthermore, the Romulans could take the abilities in new directions, such as telekinesis or other such powers.

Fortunately for the galaxy, however, the Romulans have not pursued this avenue… at least as far as fans know. Romulan society has secretive aspects hidden from the galaxy, and so it’s possible they do have psychics, but have successfully hidden this fact. Thankfully, Nero only made this discovery under extreme circumstances, which means the Star Trek galaxy could feasibly escape the threat of Romulan telepathy, purely because they don’t know they have it.

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