Therin of Andor wrote:
Let these guys prove their mettle by not responding to anything but the ship. That would've been creatively, a risk.
And the critics and fanboys would still pounce and say, "So where's the 'black hat' heavy?", like they did with TMP, ST IV and ST V.
I actually don't remember fanboys clamoring for a "black hat heavy" as much as Harve Bennett did. He
needed the black hat. Fans, on the other hand, seemed to want the movies to reflect the best of the original series, which didn't always need a back hat. This isn't Star Wars or James Bond. Where was the black hat in City on the Edge of Forever? But TWOK was popular with fans and audiences, so nearly every film since has tried to emulate it. TWOK was the best and worst thing to happen to the Trek movies.
TMP: I remember people clamoring for the characterizations they missed from TOS and wanting more action and fewer loving effetcs shots. I don't ever recall a huge uproar over a lack of villain.
STIV: I actually also remember fans happy with this one, along with the general public. It was a lot like the original series during it's comedic periods. We may have bristled at the flitty way time travel was handled, but otherwise, it was great to have the general public and Trekkies on the same page for a change.
STV: again, the clamor was for a film that didn't suck. The Black Hat heavy was Captain Klaa, who was one dimensional. All around the most interesting character was Sybok - who wasn't a villain.
Star Trek doesn't need an arch villain. It needs a good story and engaging characters. You can have conflict without Dr. Evil driving the argument. If all we needed were bad guys, then everyone would love Shinzon, Ru'afo and Soran and the films they were in.