||This Star Trek-related article describes a work or element of fiction in a primarily in-universe style. (October 2009)|
|Portrayed by||Robert O'Reilly|
Gowron is a fictional character in the Star Trek universe. Portrayed by Robert O'Reilly and featured in the television series Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. His defining characteristics are his large eyes, cruel grin, and voice.
The Next Generation 
Gowron (Klingon - ghawran) first appears in the episode "Reunion" as the main rival of Duras for the succession of the post of Klingon Chancellor K'mpec, who suspects that one of the two had been poisoning him and appoints Captain Jean-Luc Picard as "Arbiter of Succession" to determine who will follow him. Before the arbitration process can be resolved, however, Worf's one-time mate, K'Ehleyr, discovers the evidence that implicates Ja'rod (the father of Duras) in the Romulan attack on the Klingon outpost Khitomer, and to prevent her from disclosing it, Duras murders her. Claiming right of vengeance, Worf challenges Duras to a duel, and kills him, resulting in Gowron's ascension to the Chancellorship.
Gowron reappears in the episode "Redemption", with his position now under threat from the Duras sisters who are driving for Duras's illegitimate son Toral to be appointed Chancellor. It is revealed that the Duras clan has been in league with the Klingons' traditional enemies the Romulans, and their attempt to seize power ends when the Romulans abandon them. Gowron also restores the honor of Worf's house during this episode's events.
Gowron is once more challenged in the episode "Rightful Heir" by the apparently resurrected Kahless the Unforgettable. It is ultimately revealed that this Kahless was in fact a clone, whom Gowron appoints to the symbolic post of Emperor of the Klingon Empire.
Deep Space Nine 
Gowron's first appearance in the series is in the episode "The House of Quark". He rules over a dispute of the status of the House of Kozak. Gowron appears prominently in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine in the episode "The Way of the Warrior", when he launches an assault upon the Cardassian Union, claiming that the newly installed civilian Detapa Council is infested with shapeshifters from the Dominion, a powerful organization from the Gamma Quadrant that is attempting to gain a foothold in the Alpha Quadrant. When the Federation Council condemns his actions, Gowron formally withdraws the Empire from the Khitomer Accords, thus ending the alliance with the Federation.
Despite this, Gowron journeys to the station, hoping to get Worf to argue on behalf of the Klingons, even though Worf believes Gowron to be wrong. He does not take the refusal well, reminding him that he was the one who restored his family's honor, and for that he owes him a debt of gratitude even greater than any Starfleet oath. Despite Gowron's pleas, Worf still refuses. Gowron angrily warns him that if Worf turns his back on him, he will reinstate the discommendation and that not even Worf's brother Kurn will be spared. "You will have nothing!" Gowron spits at Worf, but Worf simply replies, "Except my honor." Gowron storms away.
Later in the episode, the Defiant is forced to fight its way through a Klingon blockade of Cardassia Prime to rescue Gul Dukat and the rest of the Detapa Council. The Defiant returns to the station, only to find it surrounded by a fleet of Klingon battleships, led by both General Martok and Gowron himself. Gowron issues Captain Sisko a final ultimatum: turn over Gul Dukat and the Detapa Council, or else. Sisko refuses, warning that DS9 is not quite as helpless as they were led to believe. He attacks Deep Space Nine anyway to capture the Detapa Council. A fragile peace is reached by the end of the episode, with Gowron's infamous warning "You have sided against us in battle, and this...we do not forgive, or forget!".
In the episode "Broken Link", Gowron risks a war with the United Federation of Planets, demanding the disputed Archanis sector. Starfleet comes to the conclusion that Gowron is in fact a changeling through faulty information leaked to Odo. Sisko, Odo, Worf and O'Brien infiltrate a Klingon ceremony to try to expose him in the follow-up episode "Apocalypse Rising", but ultimately discover that the changeling is in fact Gowron's top advisor General Martok, who is killed by Gowron's men. In spite of this, Gowron does not change his policies though he agrees to a cease-fire.
In the fifth season two-parter, "In Purgatory's Shadow" and "By Inferno's Light", Gowron restores the broken peace with the Federation in the Khitomer Accords after the Cardassian Union joins the Dominion and the real Martok is rescued from a Dominion prison.
Gowron makes his final appearances in "When It Rains..." and "Tacking Into the Wind", where he assumes direct command of Klingon military forces and launches multiple reckless attacks with minimal success. Sisko complains to Worf that Gowron's actions are jeopardizing the war effort, and that perhaps someone should explain it to him--namely Worf. Worf speculates that this is an attempt to discredit his friend General Martok, who is forced to command many of these doomed offensives. Martok, although he knows that this is indeed Gowron's intention, tells Worf not to involve himself. Incensed by such a violation of Klingon honor codes, Worf disregards Martok's request and confronts Gowron, who dismisses Worf's accusation and adds that his "child's uniform"--referring to his Starfleet uniform--is the only thing saving him from his true fate: a duel to the death (to wit, his own.) In response, Worf simply removes the comm badge, places it on the table, and informs Gowron that he's now speaking as a member of the House of Martok. He then repeats the accusation, making it a direct challenge to Gowron by adding that he is unfit to lead the Empire. Gowron takes the bait, but after a hard-fought duel, Worf kills Gowron. By all rights, Worf is entitled to assume the leadership of the Empire, but he refuses the Chancellorship in favor of Martok. This is an irony, as it was Worf who had killed Duras to enable Gowron to ascend to the Chancellorship in the first place.
Despite the questionable nature of Gowron's actions towards the end of his life, he does die in honorable combat, as evidenced by Worf's performance of the traditional Klingon death howl (done as a warning to those in Sto-Vo-Kor - the place of the honored dead in Klingon mythology - that a warrior is about to arrive) over the body.