Dale Sams wrote:
That until "Honest Trailers" pointed it out...only Chekov and Spock are where they're supposed to be.
Yeah, that's bugged me a little since day one. Scotty was the one that broke the camel's back. A disgraced officer sent to a distant outpost as punishment, he just shows up with a cadet who was kicked off the ship, ignores a direct order from a superior officer, then dries off and puts on a uniform to become chief engineer. Whaaaaat?
It makes Kirk becoming captain so quickly look almost like a sane decision by comparison.
Scotty's integration would have been so incredibly easy. Also Old Spock's passiveness, and a lot of contrivances from the middle part of the film...
Everything in the film until the destruction of Vulcan plays out as it did. But when Young Spock makes the log entry, there's where the differences begin:
While he delivers his log entry about only 10,000 Vulcans being left, we also see the Enterprise searching for survivors in the debris of the fleet, picking up escape pods, etc...
One of those survivors is Scotty. Spock visits sickbay, where McCoy informs him that the chief engineer is dead. Scotty, who's injured and also in sickbay, overhears this and applies for the post, because he's been engineer aboard the Farragut and he he studied the plans of the Constitution class as a hobby. Spock agrees, makes him Chief Engineer.
Now Kirk and Old Spock. Instead of exiling Kirk on an ice planet so that he finds Old Spock in an absolutely contrived way in a cave, he puts Kirk in the brig. Uhura then receives a transmission from a nearby planet, a remote Starfleet outpost. She is puzzled as she reports that someone wants to talk to "Captain James T. Kirk of the USS Enterprise about the Romulan Nero". He wants Kirk to beam down.
Time for Spock and McCoy to exchange an intrigued look.
Spock ponders the odds and lets Kirk beam down to the outpost. Kirk is beamed into a dark hallway. A dark figure approaches him and steps into the light: It's Old Spock. Spock recognizes Kirk is nowhere near the Captain he is supposed to be. He gives the mind meld exposition from the film. He then tells Kirk that when he returns to the Enterprise, he must not talk about Old Spock, and he must take command of the ship because Young Spock isn't up to the task. So he gives him the hint about making Young Spock angry.
Kirk returns, forces Young Spock into the nervous breakdown, and the rest of the film is again like the rest.
We get: a realistic scenario for Scotty to become Chief Engineer, an ACTIVE Spock Prime, no silly transwarp beaming, and no stupid exile and double monster and extreme coincidence, also no silly Scotty in the drain pipe scene. Without the ice planet scenes there'd also be no time difference.