Episode Title: "COGENITOR"
Production Number: 048
Original Air Date: 04-30-03
The Enterprise is surveying a hypergiant star that will go supernova within two centuries. The Enterprise encounters an alien ship from a system called Vissia, more than 25 light-years from the hypergiant, and Vissian Captain Drennik offers to help Captain Archer and the Enterprise crew study the star.
While Captain Archer and Captain Drennik explore the surface of the star in the Vissians' shielded stratopod, Commander Tucker meets with the Vissian engineer, who is trying to have a baby with his wife and their cogenitor, the third gender of their species. Tucker learns that cogenitors make up about three percent of the Vissian population, and are only used when married couples want to have a baby; the cogenitor is treated like a pet, and is not allowed to be educated or choose a vocation.
Commander Tucker secretly meets with the cogenitor and teaches it how to read, and gives it the idea that it should have the same rights and opportunities as the other two Vissian genders, causing a diplomatic incident when the cogenitor requests asylum aboard the Enterprise.
Factoid: No Earth ship has ever been within ten light-years of a hypergiant.
Factoid: For over a century the Vissians have been constructing their starship hulls with trinesium, which can withstand temperatures up to 18,000 degrees.
Factoid: Dr. Phlox has heard that Rigelians have four or five genders.
Factoid: Humans have discovered only 92 naturally occurring elements; the Vissians have discovered over 200.
Factoid: Vissians developed warp drive nearly a thousand years ago, but they do not travel very far from their home.
Factoid: Vissian navigation controls are based on five spatial axes.
Factoid: For Vissians, the aroma of food is more important than the taste.
Guest Characters: Porthos
Alien Races: *Vissians
KEY: [brackets]=illusions *star=first appearance