The S/U romance was never the theme of the new Trek films as their relationship was addressed for like 5 minutes in both films. S/U are not Anakin/Padme from Star Wars.
Also again I think the writers just suck a little. Uhura did not have to replace Mccoy. she could have been the lead female without messing up the kirk/spock/bones dynamic.
Perhaps the writers of Nu-Trek are not talented enough to write the story like that.
May I also add that I did not like the chess thing much as it was too romantic for my taste. I like angst and brooding better.
I agree - you said it better than I could.
Without raving or ranting like I did.