|Affiliation||United Federation of Planets|
|Posting||Vulcan ambassador to the Federation|
|Portrayed by||Mark Lenard
Sarek // is a fictional character in the Star Trek media franchise. He is a Vulcan astrophysicist, the Vulcan ambassador to the United Federation of Planets, and father of Spock. The character was originated by Mark Lenard in the 1967 episode "Journey to Babel". Lenard previously portrayed a Romulan Commander in another episode of the original series, 1966's "Balance of Terror".
Star Trek: The Original Series
Sarek was born in 2165. He is the son of Skon of Vulcan. Solkar, father to Skon and grandfather to Sarek, was the first Vulcan ambassador to Earth, and was the captain of the Vulcan survey ship T'plana'hath which made first contact with Earth. (Star Trek: First Contact)  Sarek was married twice, and had two sons. Prior to his first marriage, he had a relationship with the Vulcan priestess, T'Rei, which produced Sarek's first son Sybok, a character not developed until the fifth feature film in the late 1980s. Sarek later married Amanda Grayson, a native of the planet Earth. After Amanda's death, Sarek married Perrin, also human, who survived his death. Sarek and Perrin had no children.
Sarek's second son, Spock, entered Starfleet Academy. Sarek opposed the decision, and the two were estranged for 18 years. Following an Enterprise mission where Spock helped save Sarek's life, father and son reconciled.
Sarek has had many diplomatic successes. Throughout each series and film, Sarek is shown to have great compassion for humanity and Earth. The underlying message of his character is a juxtaposition of deep caring, love, and compassion against the hardened surface of pure logic.
In Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, Sarek asks Kirk to bring Spock's body back along with his katra, or living essence, to Vulcan. Sarek later confronts Kirk at his apartment, thinking that Spock placed his katra into Kirk's mind (since Kirk was the last person to be with the dying Spock), and asking Kirk why he didn't return Spock to Vulcan. Unknown to either Sarek or Kirk, Spock had actually placed his katra in the mind of his friend Leonard McCoy for safekeeping. The Genesis Device regenerates Spock's body and restores his life; Kirk and his crew manage to get Spock off the planet and return him to his home planet of Vulcan. There, Sarek asks the priestess T'Lar to perform a fal-tor-pan, reuniting Spock's mind and body. Sarek thanks Kirk for the rescue of Spock, which took place at the expense of the destruction of the Enterprise and the death of Kirk's son.
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home begins with Kirk, Spock, and the rest of the Enterprise crew still in exile on Vulcan. Sarek travels to Earth to speak on behalf of Kirk (who is facing charges from the Klingon Empire), and is subsequently trapped on the planet when Earth is threatened by destruction by an alien probe. After Kirk and his crew return and save Earth, and are largely exonerated at their subsequent trial, Sarek has a private audience with his son. Sarek states that he is pleased with Spock, and admits that he was wrong in opposing Spock's induction into Starfleet, praising his comrades as people of good character.
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Spock's ongoing conflict between emotion and logic is countered by his parents, a seemingly loving and devoted couple. In the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "Sarek", Lenard made one of his last appearances as the character. Sarek suffers from Bendii Syndrome, an incurable and terminal neurological degenerative illness that makes him lose control of his emotions. Having established a mind-meld with Jean-Luc Picard, Sarek is able to continue with an important diplomatic mission, but his emotions are expressed privately through Picard, among them his deep love for Amanda, Spock, and Perrin. Sarek finally succumbs to Bendii Syndrome, dying in the TNG episode "Unification, part I", which takes place in the year 2368.
Mark Lenard's final filmed appearance in the role was in Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country. The film was released before his last broadcast appearance. Here the character is once again shown as a diplomat participating in the Khitomer Conference, the first diplomatic meeting between the Klingons and the Federation.
The character of Sarek and his relationship with Spock and Amanda have been explored in depth in amateur fiction, several authorized novels, and in the animated episode "Yesteryear", written by D. C. Fontana.
Star Trek (2009)
Sarek appears in the 2009 Star Trek film, played by Ben Cross. Though respectful of Spock's ability to make his own choices, Sarek clearly encourages him to maintain his logical Vulcan nature. Sarek maintains that he married Amanda because it was logical to do so - since as the Vulcan ambassador, it would of course fall upon Sarek to observe human behavior. Later, Sarek is on the board of the Vulcan Science Academy, and is surprised to learn that his son has turned down admission in favor of joining Starfleet.
When the insane Romulan captain, Nero, makes clear his intention to destroy Vulcan, Spock arrives to transport Sarek, Amanda, and the rest of the Vulcan council to safety; however, Amanda is lost in the attempt. On the Enterprise, Sarek once again tries to help Spock, who is continuing to struggle with his emotions. Sarek advises Spock that if he feels anger (at Vulcan's destruction and Amanda's death), then he should not try to hide it. Sarek also admits to his son: "You once asked me why I married your mother...I married her because I loved her." Sarek affirms to his son that not all Vulcans are as emotionless as they appear to be; even Sarek is painfully grieved over the loss of his beloved wife. At this moment, father and son have reconciled as they grieve together over the losses of their world and loved ones, before Spock leaves to stop Nero from causing any more destruction and to avenge his mother's untimely death.
Sarek appears in the following episodes and films:
- Star Trek III: The Search for Spock
- Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
- Star Trek V: The Final Frontier
- Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
- Star Trek
- Sarek at Memory Alpha (a Star Trek wiki)
- Amanda Grayson at Memory Alpha (a Star Trek wiki)
- Sybok at Memory Alpha (a Star Trek wiki)
- Perrin at Memory Alpha (a Star Trek wiki)
- Startrek.com article on Sarek