Robert Comsol wrote:
But since TMP is essentially a remake of "The Changeling" and since you mentioned "Balance of Terror", why is ST II not essentially a remake of this TOS episode?
I think it's fair to say that "Balance of Terror" is one of the all-time favorite TOS episodes, while "The Wrath of Khan" is one or the
all-time favorite TOS movie.
However and IMHO there is a decisive difference between the two: BoT focuses on the inner
conflicts of the protagonists (= "real" Star Trek) while ST II doesn't (conflict of egos and/or ideologies).
The TOS Kirk was touched by the death of a crew member, the ST II Kirk is touched by a dying crew member, and despite all the misery and death he's seen and for which he shared responsibility it comes down to that:
A bite into a fruit
followed by "All right. I don't like to lose."
Boy, can't disagree more strenuously. TWOK is not a remake of BoT because they are wholly separate entities. This isn't a case of replacing "biological units" and "sterilize imperfections" with "carbon units" and "patterned for data storage" like CHANGELING and TMP (and yeah, I'm shortchanging TMP in some big ways there, but they should have given JM Lucas screen credit, it was that close at times.)
As for the inner conflict, TWOK has it in spades, with Kirk's genuine mid-life crisis heightened by all sorts of new issues arising from the past, which puts the focus even more critically on whether he did good with those previous calls re: David and Khan.
Cosmetically and structurally, TWOK has got the WTF aspects that can bring it down, I grant that, like the idiocy of not raising the shields just to satisfy a necessary plot point (and if you want to be picky, Kirk's casual destruction of the ceti eel w/o even a peep from McCoy about needing it for study), but as far as delivering
the real deal from TOS, it does it. It tramples some stuff that went before (never faced death?) but it does so with the end purpose of enriching character, not destroying it (wish the same can be said for the Kirk of TUC.)
As for your summation about the apple, all I can say is that I agree with it completely: but only with respect to the Abrams film's total misfire with including that and the MARU scenario in so inept a fashion. In TWOK, it works as a summation of the character and as a point of departure pointing for where the character could have and possibly should have gone in sequels.