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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies I-X

Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old August 10 2012, 08:42 AM   #61
Therin of Andor
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
Rethinking your premises doesn't necessarily damage what was established before; done right, it can just add new facets to the characters.

(Not that anybody is really defending ST V!)
Sure, but in this particular case, I really think DC Fontana had a point. Had Sybok been a revered mentor/teacher of young Spock, the film might have been just as strong (or stronger). Had Sybok filled the gap of some of those 18(?) years where Spock and Sarek did not speak?

Or, perhaps if Sarek had also shared scenes with the now-adult Sybok in ST V?

That Shatner deliberately pursued his half-brother-Sybok premise after Roddenberry and Fontana (ironically still at odds over the creatorship of TNG at the time) specifically suggested that Shatner reconsider that plot aspect is... telling. Many fans bristled that Director Shatner was ignoring sage advice just because he could. At the time I recall it antagonized fans to start to look for other reasons to dislike the film, too.
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Old August 10 2012, 12:31 PM   #62
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

^I like the ideas you're suggesting there (re mentor teacher/ non-speaking years) and, especially, the Sarek idea. But for now, we can only look at what was, not what might have been.
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Old August 10 2012, 01:03 PM   #63
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

I dunno. We know from "The Menagerie" that Spock can be intensely loyal to the point of breaking the law, but would he really be willing to place loyalty to a childhood mentor over loyalty to Kirk, especially when that mentor was a criminal and terrorist? I think I have to go with Shatner here -- the only bond strong enough to justify Spock surrendering to Sybok once they got aboard the ship was the bond of family.
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Old August 11 2012, 02:44 AM   #64
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Christopher wrote: View Post
the only bond strong enough to justify Spock surrendering to Sybok once they got aboard the ship was the bond of family.
There was also the bond between Pike and Spock, for which Spock risked the death penalty by going back to Talos IV.
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Old August 11 2012, 03:46 AM   #65
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
the only bond strong enough to justify Spock surrendering to Sybok once they got aboard the ship was the bond of family.
There was also the bond between Pike and Spock, for which Spock risked the death penalty by going back to Talos IV.
But Pike wasn't a hostage-taking criminal. Loyalty to a commanding officer or mentor would motivate Spock to break the rules to help them if they were in need, but it wouldn't motivate them to help them commit crimes or endanger his ship. To justify him doing that, you'd need an even deeper bond.
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Old August 11 2012, 04:52 AM   #66
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Christopher wrote: View Post
Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Christopher wrote: View Post
the only bond strong enough to justify Spock surrendering to Sybok once they got aboard the ship was the bond of family.
There was also the bond between Pike and Spock, for which Spock risked the death penalty by going back to Talos IV.
But Pike wasn't a hostage-taking criminal. Loyalty to a commanding officer or mentor would motivate Spock to break the rules to help them if they were in need, but it wouldn't motivate them to help them commit crimes or endanger his ship. To justify him doing that, you'd need an even deeper bond.
Spock was the criminal in that episode. Falsifying orders. Essentially kidnapping a Starfleet officer. Hacking a starbase computer.
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Old August 11 2012, 01:49 PM   #67
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

^Missing the point. The point was about what would motivate him to do those things for someone else. Spock willing to go to great lengths to help a Pike who's grievously injured and in need of rescuing is one thing. But can you imagine Spock going to the same lengths to help a Pike who had gone rogue, invaded a town, taken hostages, and made demands like a terrorist?
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Old August 12 2012, 04:10 AM   #68
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Christopher wrote: View Post
^Missing the point. The point was about what would motivate him to do those things for someone else. Spock willing to go to great lengths to help a Pike who's grievously injured and in need of rescuing is one thing. But can you imagine Spock going to the same lengths to help a Pike who had gone rogue, invaded a town, taken hostages, and made demands like a terrorist?
Oh, I got the point. Fact remains he did commit criminal acts. His motivations were different is all.
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Old August 12 2012, 03:14 PM   #69
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Of course he did, but that's got nothing whatsoever to do with what I'm saying, which is that there was a legitimate story reason to make Sybok his brother instead of his mentor.
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Old September 7 2012, 12:05 PM   #70
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Christopher wrote: View Post
BillJ wrote: View Post
Does canon vs. non-canon really matter in the home video era? I own it and can watch it whenever I want.
Well, by current definitions (remember, Roddenberry's definitions ceased to apply when he died over two decades ago, so it's rather odd that fans are still up in arms about them), if it's onscreen, then it's part of the canon.

And again, canon is not, has never been, and never will be about telling the audience what they can or can't watch/believe/enjoy. That's a myth and a fundamental misunderstanding of the concept. After all, it's all fictional anyway, none of it more real than any other part. Although the term "canon" comes from religion and implies that texts outside canon should not be read at all, it's silly to apply that same dogmatism or exclusionism to a fictional canon. If you enjoy a story, you should be able to enjoy it just as well whether it's part of the official/original continuity or an apocryphal tale.

I like to say that if canon is history, then tie-ins are historical fiction. They're stories that aren't a documented part of the "real" history, but that potentially could have happened within it -- at least until some new "discovery" is made (in some new episode or movie) that proves they couldn't. And it's not like watching TV or movies is a history course where you have to get the right answers on a final exam. It's strictly recreational. I'm sure there are plenty of people who enjoy reading both historical nonfiction and historical fiction. If you enjoy history, then both can be valuable. You may know that the latter probably didn't happen, but it can still be entertaining to believe it could have happened, and at least it can give you the pleasure of imagining yourself in the historical setting you enjoy.

And of course, unlike real history, canon is just as imaginary as the tie-ins derived from it, so that makes the distinction even less worth making a fuss over.
This is a great way to look at it. I never have worried about what is "official" but rather what I've enjoyed. In that regard there are plenty of books and comics that I really liked that I consider to have happened with this fictional universe, and of course there are a few that I don't.

As for Star Trek V specifically, sure as an adult (unfortunately) I can see some story problems and such, but the 9 year old who saw it when it came out in 1989, not knowing if it would be the last movie or not, thoroughly enjoyed this adventure with his sci-fi heroes.

Sometimes I miss being a kid simply because back then I didn't care what was official, it was all Star Trek and it was all fun.
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Old September 7 2012, 12:53 PM   #71
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

A beaker full of death wrote: View Post
See, questions like this are the reason the recent Star Trek movie spent 80 percent of its time trying to explain why canon was no longer binding.
It's like DC Comics having to totally reinvent its universe every 20 years.
Star Trek isn't some religion. There is no council of cardinals making vital decisions about whether interpreting Kirk 2:16 means you have to eat worms on Friday.
"Canon?" Come on.
Star Trek V is a movie. A 90 minute story. Like it or don't like it.
This canon stuff is nothing but a time-waster that brutally detracts from the things that actually matter: story, plot, acting, production values. You know: art.
Actually, oddly enough, I fall on the other side of this argument...

"Canon" and "Continuity" are two things that I value greatly when it comes to any media... TV, movies, books... whatever...

If you have a series as long running as Star Trek, then having a canon or continous history is something that's important, not just to fans, but to writers who have a history that's been built on, expanded, grown and fleshed out... it's something for new writers to be respectful of, looking back at 40+ years of TV and Movies, and going 'yeah, that's the history built here by god knows how many writers, now i'm going to add to it.'

I do enjoy discussions about canon and continuity, as sometimes people do forget how important have a solid continuity for any series is... People would soon be up in arms if half way through an series of Voyager, the writers suddenly decided to change the fact Warp Drives needed Deuterium to run, changing it to converting the waste products from the crew / mess hall into energy instead... So i think people should be respectful of what writers work on, both for a long time series built continuity, and for what is decided is and isn't canon...

It doesn't detract from the enjoyment of what isn't canon, but i'd say it's pretty important to know what is and isn't, for the sake of current and future storylines.

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Old September 7 2012, 01:13 PM   #72
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

SimpleLogic wrote: View Post
Sometimes I miss being a kid simply because back then I didn't care what was official, it was all Star Trek and it was all fun.
I'm 28 and it's still all Star Trek and all fun for me
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Old September 7 2012, 02:02 PM   #73
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
At the time I recall it antagonized fans to start to look for other reasons to dislike the film, too.
It's not like these were hard to find, though.
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Old September 7 2012, 02:07 PM   #74
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
It's not like these were hard to find, though.
Exactly.


To stop people from leaving early? by Therin of Andor, on Flickr
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Old September 7 2012, 02:12 PM   #75
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Re: Star Trek V's canon status

Methos wrote: View Post
I do enjoy discussions about canon and continuity, as sometimes people do forget how important have a solid continuity for any series is... People would soon be up in arms if half way through an series of Voyager, the writers suddenly decided to change the fact Warp Drives needed Deuterium to run, changing it to converting the waste products from the crew / mess hall into energy instead... So i think people should be respectful of what writers work on, both for a long time series built continuity, and for what is decided is and isn't canon...
That's a valid point of view, but the key is not to define it with too much granularity. Canon is about broad strokes, not details. Different creators may be nominally depicting their creations as parts of a shared continuity, but they're always going to have differences in how they interpret the details of that hypothetical reality, in the same way that any two artists painting the same model or landscape will produce differing results. Those decades of prior continuity that we choose to perceive as a uniform reality are actually fraught with self-contradiction. It's just been mentioned in a thread in the Trek Literature forum that if you read old fan publications from back when TMP or TWOK first came out, you'd find that some fans denounced them as non-canonical or alternate-reality because of their differences in detail from TOS. When TNG came along, there was a lot of resistance from TOS fans (and actors!) to accepting it as "real" Star Trek, and it was years before fandom really embraced it as a genuine part of the whole. Every new incarnation of ST is a different interpretation with variances from what came before, and the only reason most of us look back on ST as a uniform whole today is because we learned to forgive or gloss over the inconsistencies that were initially denounced as incompatible with canon. Because ultimately we recognized that they were still representing the same imagined reality at the core, even if they differed in some of the specifics of how they portrayed it.

So yes, you should respect what came before, but that doesn't mean slavishly duplicating every tiny detail, because what came before has never been perfectly consistent on that level of detail anyway. (TOS itself was wildly inconsistent about lots of details, because its writers were making up the universe as they went along. Are they Vulcans or Vulcanians? Does the Enterprise work for Space Central, UESPA, or Star Fleet?) Respect for continuity means respecting the broad strokes and the overall spirit of the universe. It means not diverging too far from what's come before, but a certain amount of flexibility in the details of the interpretation is the prerogative of every artist.
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