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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old November 21 2011, 04:50 AM   #91
Captain Tracy
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

7THSEALORD - Yes, I hear and understand your , LOL!
and I assure you I have read and re-read you most eloquent posts regarding your personal philosophy.

I happen to hold a different philosophy, as it relates to WHAT TREK SAYS, AND WHEN PUT TO THE TEST, WHAT IS ACTUALLY IS.

And yes, you are quite correct that if KIRK (being the personification of the UFP:SFC morality) does not destroy the Landru computer on BETA III, 430 of his shipmates will die; if he does not destroy the idol of Vaal, 430 of his shipmates will die; if he does not destroy the Temple of Applo, 430 of his shipmates will die.

Which if his mission is to survive (which it is not by written UFP code), It is understandable, reasonable, and of course in his own self-interest and that of the unspoken UFP:SFC.

However, he cannot invade their home plant, and in the process destroy the Landru computer, de-rail the culture on BEAT III, and then,...

Recite a speech, explaining his 'justification' for destroying a peaceful alien world - which is not an annex to the Federation - about what he and the UFP feel about the value of the PURITAN WORK ETHIC.

He becomes just a moralizing Bully - once his actions do not match the trumpeted UFP:SFC code.

HOWEVER AND MORE IMPORTANTLY - Please understand this: You mention above a vision of the future,.... well here is the thing where STAR TREK steps in the doo-doo so many times.

The basic conflict at play here is that TREK paints for a us a very practical state of the future, in all areas including our HUMANITY.

And yet, they did not send 'a man from the future' into the future TREK universe to show us how advanced we had become as a culture,...

Instead TREK sent a man with a 1966 Post-Cold war attitude and culture into space to TRY to live up to highly honorable ideals of the future of the 23rd Century UFP concept,... and they gave him a Phaser too.

And that is what we are actually watching, and that is why the two concepts did not work together in many cases.

7THSEALORD, my friend,... on your 'Specter of the Gun' scenario regarding the hypothetical 'trade route' or 'blockade',... again, this is a problem ONLY for the UFP:SFC,.. and their personal need in no way constitutes a need of anything for anyone else, bottom line.

So KIRK, is seemingly forced, to invade,... and you are right,... it IS sloppy scripting.

And although it allows TV tell a story and sell commercial time, I know a better course of action for our dear Captain in this situation.

Would you care to take a guess? (and no, LOL! retirement or suicide are not in my answer LOL!)

And PLYNCH - Feel free to offer your answer of an alternative to ignoring the Melkotian space warning and crossing into their space and landing on their home planet.
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Old November 21 2011, 05:19 AM   #92
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

Captain Tracy wrote: View Post
Would you care to take a guess? (and no, LOL! retirement or suicide are not in my answer LOL!)
I will wait and see.

To state the bleeding obvious, the show was, after all, made in the 1960s and, no matter how subversive it was for the time (and it most definitely was), cannot help but reflect the attitudes of that era.

At the very least, you needed characters that the audience could identify with. Meaning 1960s people or idealized forms thereof. This much is acknowledged in various sources. So in certain respects, shooting down Kirk for some of his actions makes as much sense as pillorying Tom Sawyer because he used the "N" word.

Also, we might consider ourselves to have become more enlightened or wiser in the last 50-odd years, but I think both eras will still have more in common with each other than with the 23rd or 24th centuties (or portions thereof).
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Old November 21 2011, 05:58 AM   #93
Captain Tracy
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

7THSEALORD - Now you know very well I am not 'shooting down' the character of KIRK, he is my favorite character.

I am however pointing out the hypocrisy of American Network TV, as juxtaposed by GR's original and hope-filled vision, and that of the constraints placed upon the writers to FORCE the KIRK character to ACT as the socio/politico American Ideal of his era.
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Old November 21 2011, 06:53 AM   #94
7thsealord
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

Captain Tracy wrote: View Post
7THSEALORD - Now you know very well I am not 'shooting down' the character of KIRK, he is my favorite character.

I am however pointing out the hypocrisy of American Network TV, as juxtaposed by GR's original and hope-filled vision, and that of the constraints placed upon the writers to FORCE the KIRK character to ACT as the socio/politico American Ideal of his era.
I assure you, Cap'n T, I was not singling you out for the sin of shooting down Kirk. That part was truly intended as a general observation.

... And I am not so sure about blaming it all on the Network execs either. Certainly they would cause a lot of problems but, in many ways, the 60s networks were like bureaucracies - it was largely about playing safe, following standard formulas and getting nice predictable results.

GR's "vision"? Um, well, he has been quoted ofttimes since about what he wanted to do. Personally, I have a few reservations about how well it would have done both ratings-wise and fan-wise.
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Old November 21 2011, 07:29 AM   #95
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

7THSEALORD - Too true about the Networks, also there was a HUGE pressure not to be "dangerous" in examining conditions, shall we say, "to close to home" at the time,... and therefore exploration of ourselves and our values were somewhat squashed in the interest of not offending the 'accepted political party lines' and the sponsors.

On a personal note:

I would have loved to have seen more military-based operations, but again, here comes either the Prime Directive or The Organians.

When I first saw the episode: Arena, I thought: FINALLY we are going to see these guys in a full-scale ground-assault fire-fight,... but no,... a Metron crashed the party.
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Old November 21 2011, 12:28 PM   #96
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

W-e-l-l, doubtful if they ever had the budget* or the props to go full-on military anyhow. Even if GR allowed it, and I question if he would. E-VER.

As a keen armchair general, I too would like to have seen some proper military @$$-kicking.

Later series (IMO) REALLY could have used Star Fleet Marines or whatever the MECOs of Enterprise became at various stages (notably DS9, but all the others showed the need as well). Star Fleet personnel with just nice uniforms and hand-phasers beaming planetside for science and/or diplomacy was acceptable - but deliberately herding them into serious ground combat that way as well never made any dang sense. Doesn't prove moral superiority, just means stupidity.

That entire mess, I lay directly at GR's door. As I understand (and admittedly I could have misread or misremembered), he was always totally opposed to 'military concepts' (such as 'Space Marines') intruding upon his vision.

(* - Reminds me somewhat of a popular TV cop show done here in Australia during the 80's. In its first season, you would never see more than two characters in it at a time with guns drawn - whether publicity stills or action sequences or whatever. The reason being that, at that stage at least, they only had two gun props for the entire show.)

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Old November 21 2011, 03:37 PM   #97
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

Captain Tracy wrote: View Post
SISKO - LOL!!!! Okay pal, while you are working on my "what would you do in KIRK's position/dilemma, I give you another, and while you are working on your answer, it might inspire to formulate an even more difficult one for me.

Okay SISKO,... heh, heh, heh,... BACK IN THE CHAIR LOL!!

In the episode, 'The Apple', during its quest to 'seek out new life and new civilizations', the U.S.S. Enterprise has assumed orbit around Gamma Trianguli VI, an Eden-like class 'M' planet, inhabited by peaceful and primitive humanoids.

However, their also exists on the planet surface an ancient
machine which, due the structure of its power source, emits powerful electromagnetic waves, which not only slowly drain off the power reserves of the orbiting Starship, but in due time, crippled the ship's capacity to extricate itself from the influence of the emanations - thereby ensuring the destruction of the U.S.S. Enterprise, and the death of her crew of 430 men and women.

So CAPTAIN SISKO,... do you?

TAKE: Kirk's action and fire the ships phasers against the thing, destroying it, and thereby saving your ship and its people?

Or, do you

PASS: On Kirk's action, and thereby ensure the destruction of your ship and all hands aboard her?


Now SISKO,.. NO WIGGLING THIS TIME LOL!!

PASS or TAKE?
Ah, a "Prime Directive" dilemma. Well, the ship is under attack. But, destroying the attacker changes the living conditions of a society. And although 430 people will die if the ship is destroyed, Starfleet officers supposedly take an oath that they would rather die than break the Prime Directive. What would I do? Blow the crap out of Vaal. Then I would rely on Kirk's tried and true reasoning - this is a stagnant, artificial culture. The PD only applies to naturally developing cultures. Hey, if it works for Kirk, it should work for me!
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Old November 21 2011, 03:53 PM   #98
Captain Tracy
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

SISKO - Good to see you.

You have chosen the TAKE option.

In your answer, as part of your reasoning, you state:

"Since the ship is Under attack",...

In point-of-fact, if you can possibly review the episode, you will learn that the Electromagnetic Waves which are draining the power from your ship, are a NATURALLY OCCURRING BY-PRODUCT of the operation of the machine, Vaal.

This fact was reported to you by your Chief-Engineer at the moment your ship first entered orbit around the alien planet.

Therefore it is UNTRUE that your ship is 'UNDER ATTACK" by anything or anyone; the TRUTH is you placed and kept the ship directly in a hazard well known to you.

Does this fact change your answer?
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Old November 22 2011, 04:49 PM   #99
siskokid888
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

No, and to explain I will again quote J.T. - from "Court Martial" - "The steps I took, in the order I took them, were necessary to save my ship. And nothing is more important than my ship." Now, this may fly in the fact that the Prime Directive supposedly outweighs any other concern, but again I buy into Kirk's reading of it (and since we have never actually SEEN the Prime Directive and its details written anywhere) that it does not apply to a stagnant, artificial culture. And, not for nothing, but by destroying Vaal, did they change things all that much? I don't think so. As for putting the ship in danger, let me quote J.T. yet again -"Gentlemen, risk is our business. That's what built this ship. That's why we're aboard her". Damn, they wrote some good stuff for Shatner to spout!
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Old November 22 2011, 09:24 PM   #100
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

SISKO - Two points and two questions to consider:

The lesser important 2 points:

1. It may not be accurate to say that de-actvating Vaal, did not change things 'that much'. As I understand it, this machine provided the entire base for the culture's body of knowledge & education, provided medical healing, moral guidance, a justice system, and controlled the weather system of the planet.

2. The rhetoric as provided to KIRK in 'Return of the Arkons' was written as a speech, to justify blowing up yet another computer controlled culture when KIRK was in danger. Solely expressed as KIRK's personal interpretation of an article of the PD, and not as citing an actual article of the PD.

Two final questions for you on this one:

Two door-bell ringing evangelists - who ultimately determine that you live a lifestyle which, in their opinion, was 'without merit' according to the philosophy of their church - offer to you the explanation that because one of the fellows trespassing on your gated property managed to get his finger stuck in your door buzzer, would soon die from being electrocuted. Therefore, in order to save him from certain death, they burnt your house to the ground.

Which brings us to the more important two questions:

1) Would you still feel the same way?

And before you think this example about evangelical door-busters is 'stretching it too much',..

2) Do you know where the word 'KIRK' comes, its meaning, and what the connection to this character is?
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Old November 22 2011, 11:58 PM   #101
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

I love the door buzzer example!

Kirk means church in Scotland. But the world of Star Trek loves tough sounding names with lots of K consonants, and I reckon that was more at play than an allusion to moralism.
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Old November 23 2011, 12:48 AM   #102
7thsealord
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

Captain Tracy wrote: View Post
Two door-bell ringing evangelists - who ultimately determine that you live a lifestyle which, in their opinion, was 'without merit' according to the philosophy of their church - offer to you the explanation that because one of the fellows trespassing on your gated property managed to get his finger stuck in your door buzzer, would soon die from being electrocuted. Therefore, in order to save him from certain death, they burnt your house to the ground.

Which brings us to the more important two questions:

1) Would you still feel the same way?

And before you think this example about evangelical door-busters is 'stretching it too much',..

2) Do you know where the word 'KIRK' comes, its meaning, and what the connection to this character is?
Cap'n T, if I might weigh in, your analogy is full of holes.

IF that doorbell had been deliberately booby-trapped to harm anybody who used it, was known to have killed at least one other evangelist (and Ghod knows how many others - we only know aboiut Federation ships, I note) and the others then disarmed said doorbell - that might actually come close to portraying the actual situation.
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Old November 23 2011, 02:56 AM   #103
Captain Tracy
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

plynch wrote: View Post
I love the door buzzer example!

Kirk means church in Scotland. But the world of Star Trek loves tough sounding names with lots of K consonants, and I reckon that was more at play than an allusion to moralism.
PLYNCH - Thank you as always, as I too enjoy the clear & sensible post which you pen.

As our friend Plynch pointed out; the word 'KIRK', specifically is a Scots/Gaelic word for Church, however, what most people do not know about the word KIRK is this:

The word KIRK is the Scottish bastardization (and yes, I am of Scots/Irish heredity so I can say this proudly, thank you) of the Greek word: CIRCE (pronounced Sir-Seas).

So what is Circe?

In ancient Greek lexicon of knowledge (the origin of the root concept and origin of the word) the concept of CIRCE was personified as a mythical being named: MOTHER CIRCE.

So what was the story with this Mother Circe?

Mother Circe had magical powers, which included the ability to - through her spoken words - induce a state of hypnosis, with which to control the minds of her intended victims.

Once under this state of hypnosis, Mother Circe would then lure her human victims inside of her home, and through her magic powers, maintain them as the mindless followers of her will, operating under her direct control,..

or convert them into animals - such as pigs - and then slowly devour them over time, feeding off them, and thereby sustaining her own life.

Furthermore, once there was a lack of abundant prospective 'converts' in immediate area - having been already brought into the House of Circe. Mother Circe would travel about the county, seeking out new life to serve as new 'converts'.

Of all the Greek dramas featuring Mother Circe, her most famous appearance, though very limited to the overall body of information, is of course contained in the work of Homer's, 'The Odyssey'

And so,...

The ancient Greek Mother Circe, becomes the olde Scottish Mother Kirk, which becomes the more-modern Anglo-Saxon Mother Church.

or to summarize in Latin: "Fit ergo Circe, Church, Kirk"

And so we, dear friends,... in the modern dramatic presentations of our today, we enjoy 78 presented episodes or 'plays' of another 'KIRK' traveling, espousing his hypnotizing rhetoric, in a quest to seek out new beings for the purpose of converting and luring them into the Church of the UFP.

And so revealed,... the connection to the concept and name of: KIRK.

But, it is only a 'theory'. LOL!
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Old November 23 2011, 03:36 AM   #104
Captain Tracy
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

7thsealord wrote: View Post
Cap'n T, if I might weigh in, your analogy is full of holes.

IF that doorbell had been deliberately booby-trapped to harm anybody who used it, was known to have killed at least one other evangelist (and Ghod knows how many others - we only know aboiut Federation ships, I note) and the others then disarmed said doorbell - that might actually come close to portraying the actual situation.
7thsealord wrote: View Post
Cap'n T, if I might weigh in, your analogy is full of holes.

IF that doorbell had been deliberately booby-trapped to harm anybody who used it, was known to have killed at least one other evangelist (and Ghod knows how many others - we only know aboiut Federation ships, I note) and the others then disarmed said doorbell - that might actually come close to portraying the actual situation.
7THSEALORD - As Vaal was not booby-trapped, nor was the doorbell in the hypothesis.

To clarify: Just as Vaal gives off known and harmful emissions, so to does our illustrative example of featuring the electrically faulty doorbell.

Said emissions are only dangerous to the trespassing invaders of posted private property, who in their self-righteous fever, by-pass and ignore all warnings and notices.

Just as it was with Vaal, so is the example.

Also, Re-hypothesising another stated hypothesis does not negate, nor disprove anything; nor does it serve to support any counter-opinion, yet unheard, any more effectively than stating:

" IF may Aunt had a Winkie, she'd be my Uncle".

Therefore, the only 'holes' are the ones you are ATTEMPTING to create with your own stipulated "IF", supplied by your own hand,... but of course! LOL!
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Old November 23 2011, 05:58 AM   #105
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Re: OTHER Starship Captains - Symbolism, Foreshadowing & Plot Devices

Captain Tracy wrote: View Post
7thsealord wrote: View Post
Cap'n T, if I might weigh in, your analogy is full of holes.

IF that doorbell had been deliberately booby-trapped to harm anybody who used it, was known to have killed at least one other evangelist (and Ghod knows how many others - we only know aboiut Federation ships, I note) and the others then disarmed said doorbell - that might actually come close to portraying the actual situation.
7THSEALORD - As Vaal was not booby-trapped, nor was the doorbell in the hypothesis.

To clarify: Just as Vaal gives off known and harmful emissions, so to does our illustrative example of featuring the electrically faulty doorbell.

Said emissions are only dangerous to the trespassing invaders of posted private property, who in their self-righteous fever, by-pass and ignore all warnings and notices.

Just as it was with Vaal, so is the example.

Also, Re-hypothesising another stated hypothesis does not negate, nor disprove anything; nor does it serve to support any counter-opinion, yet unheard, any more effectively than stating:

" IF may Aunt had a Winkie, she'd be my Uncle".

Therefore, the only 'holes' are the ones you are ATTEMPTING to create with your own stipulated "IF", supplied by your own hand,... but of course! LOL!
I thoroughly disagree.

Show me, if you would be so kind, Vaal's 'Keep Out' sign. 'Funny' emissions don't really cut it as a straight-out "All trespassers should leave now" declaration. Why? Because this would be far more likely to attract others for any of several different reasons - eg. resource-finders, galactic anti-litter patrol, straight-out curiousity.

A case could perhaps be made for Vaal's .... "footprint" being the opposite of what you assert. Never got to see much of the rest of the planet, after all. How many dead spacecraft and landing parties could be buried out there?

I don't know - and neither do you, Cap'n T.

Could be zero. Very probably, I grant you since no such possibility was mentioned or even hypothesized during the episode. Then again, Fed tech is not omniscient and it wouldn't be the first time Kirk and co missed something. Given Vaal's grasp of protocol, multiple layers of wreckage and alien remains all over that world are a definite possibility. IMO.

Also, as I recall (and it has been a very long time since I saw that particular episode), Kirk and co beamed down, had assorted stuff happen and, when leaving began to look like a possible option, THAT was when the Big E came under attack. Suddenly, quietly leaving was no longer an option.

If using the 'Home Invasion' analogies, go all the way. I recall that, in general, shooting anybody who happens to be on your property is NOT deemed an acceptable reaction unless they were actually shooting at you to start with. Nor is setting up boobytraps, to take out anyone who might trespass, looked upon favourably.

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