^ I disagree most heartily. It would have been highly satisfactory for me, at least, to have Our Crew assembled, even if Pike was still captain. Probably more satisfying than the ending we got, actually, much as I liked the movie overall. For one thing, I think Pike is a great character, a real addition to the cast. I hope we still get to see him in the next movie.
For another, seeing Kirk continue to mature over the next movie would have been very satisfying as well.
Don't get me wrong, I want Kirk to become captain (good thing, since he is). I'd like to think he earned it, though. The one we saw on TOS apparently did. It wasn't dramatically necessary at all for him to earn that rank immediately, though.
Edit: I mean, jeez, even Star Wars, which isn't exactly the most character-driven franchise on the planet, didn't make Luke a Jedi instantly.
I would have preferred a scenario where Kirk was first officer for a while, too. But the reviews and the box office suggest that the majority of movie goers either don't know there is a problem with Kirk's rapid ascension, or don't care. I've had ex-military types, who do know better, shrug and tell me "It's just a movie." If test screenings had shown that people were up in arms over it, you can bet the studio would have changed it.
What really drove this decision had nothing to do with story or the writers' preferences; it was all marketing. As far as Paramount is concerned, "Captain
Kirk" is the trademark, it's part of the brand, and they want their brand for all the marketing tie-ins. It wasn't Orci's choice, but he's not stupid enough to point fingers at the guys who sign his checks.
I dunno, I guess this didn't bother me as much because I can gloss over the timeline in my mind for future movies.