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Old December 28 2013, 02:11 AM   #129
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Re: Happy 19th Birthday, Star Trek Generations!

In the J.M. Dillard novelization, Soran is a more three-dimensional character who suffers two great traumas in a short space of time: his family's death at the hands of the Borg, and being violently ripped out of the Nexus where he's been reunited with his wife and children. These actions turn the normally thoughtful and kind El-Aurian scientist who "wouldn't hurt a fly" into a broken shell of a man who will do anything to get his loved ones back, even if it's a fantasy world inside a space-time phenomena that science doesn't remotely understand. He then spends the next 78 years trying and failing to get back into the Nexus by more conventional and less lethal means only to realize that murder and even planetary genocide the prices he must pay to once again be with his wife and children.

The Tolian Soran in the novel is even more interesting than McDowell's screen portrayal, and having brief glimpses of his family and their fate would have done more to create a sympathetic and more textured Trek villain, a man who isn't just some rabid psychopath out to destroy just because he can do so or because he's a vengeful thug who wants to get even with an old enemy who slighted him, but because he was a normal, everyday man who was broken and twisted into a borderline-genocidal maniac by the loss of his homeworld and the people he loved most. Malcolm McDowell could have done wonders with that material had it been written into the script, but instead it's Dr. Crusher and Picard who mention what the Borg did to his planet and family, not Soran himself.
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