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

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Old February 26 2013, 06:06 PM   #91
Pavonis
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
But Wesley could have used a warp shuttlecraft, leaving the ship with the first officer, to proceed to Commodore Enright's station to personally oversee Dr. Daystrom's final M-5 preparations.

Bob
Since when are shuttles faster than starships?
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Old February 26 2013, 07:39 PM   #92
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
J.T.B. wrote: View Post
But changing the insignia every few years to honor a certain ship? I don't think so.
Concur. I always thought that idea was ridiculous.
"Ridiculous" like in the Lexington's actual captain can't handle a simulator-tested war game excercise and needed to relinquish command to Commodore Wesley?
Or Commodore Wesley was in charge of the war games exercise and chose the Lexington as his flag-ship. The Lexington's CO was still on board and in command of the ship, but Wesley commanded the task-force from the Lexington's bridge.

And yes, the idea of switching insignias every few years is silly at best. One doesn't need to have an alternate theory to have an opinion on your theory.
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Old February 27 2013, 12:08 PM   #93
Robert Comsol
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

EliyahuQeoni wrote: View Post
And yes, the idea of switching insignias every few years is silly at best. One doesn't need to have an alternate theory to have an opinion on your theory.
But they did switch insignias every few years. If you think that's silly at best, then your criticism applies to Gene Roddenberry's and Nicholas Meyer's choices.

Obviously, Starfleet's crest and symbol is the (mylar coated) arrowhead we've seen in many subspace video transmissions, courtrooms and on the hull of Starfleet vessels like the Enterprise or shuttlecraft (since the one in "Metamorphosis" was obviously powered by antimatter, it appears it had warp drive capability, IMHO).

Apparently, for the uniforms it's different. The receptionist in Commodore Mendez' starbase office (still) wears a delta insignia very similar to that of the Enterprise, in contrast to the flower insignia that's already around.

By the time of TMP the whole thing has changed again. All Starfleet personnel (e.g. Starfleet Admiral Kirk) now wears the delta overlapping a circle.
By the time of TWOK, 15 years after "Space Seed", the Starfleet insignia (e.g. Starship Reliant) has changed again. Now the delta is overlapping a rectangular shape.

And what's so silly of honoring the accomplishments of a particular starship (or two from TMP on) by adopting its insignia for the whole fleet?

The Enterprise is by Gene Roddenberry's definition (whether you like it or not) foremost a vessel of scientific exploration.

In our world we honor scientific achievements with the nobel prize, so I'm unable to see what's wrong doing something similar in the future (should we ask the nobel committee to stop this price as it discourages other scientists who didn't make it?).

Alternately, if you regard it from a military point of view, adopting a starship (insignia) that has impressed / defeated Federation adversaries for the whole fleet, can have a strong psychological effect on such adversaries. They encounter another Federation starship but the insignia they see on their communication screens has a clear message: Don't underestimate us, we are of the same breed as the Starfleet officers you previously encountered (considering the humiliation the Romulans suffered from the Enterprise, adopting the "NCC-1701" for the Enterprise-D had a nice touch to it).

Bob
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Old February 27 2013, 12:16 PM   #94
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
And what's so silly of honoring the accomplishments of a particular starship (or two from TMP on) by adopting its insignia for the whole fleet?
Well, it's certainly something that you can do only once. As soon as every starship has the same insignia, the pattern reaches its fixed point.
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Old February 27 2013, 01:21 PM   #95
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Well, it's certainly something that you can do only once. As soon as every starship has the same insignia, the pattern reaches its fixed point.
If you find fault with how they do things in the 23rd Century (command bridge exposed on top of vessel, anyone?) I'm not the one to bring such matters forward to, that used to be Dick Arnold's department.

I'm mostly interested in drawing accurate (if possible: logical) conclusions from observable and - if available - known production facts as long as the latter don't contradict the visual material.

Regarding this particular debate, I'd like to add the starbase club scene from "Court-Martial".

As mentioned earlier, producer Bob Justman wanted to keep the delta insignia for all Starfleet vessels and wasn't too happy, when he found out that individual starship insignias had been created (e.g. Constellation and Exeter).

Clearly a changed premise within TOS, but that scene from "Court-Martial" requires "in-universe" explanation / interpretation, IMHO.

Explanation A: All Starfleet personnel carried the delta insignia prior to providing each starship with an individual insignia.
Question: Then why didn't the Enterprise get an individual insignia, but got stuck with the general insignia?

Explanation B: Only Starfleet personnel (exception merchant marine) that does not belong to the elite starships wears the delta
Question: Then why does the Enterprise personnel wear the delta as it belongs to a starship?

Explanation C: Because of the Enterprise's previous accomplishments (Captain Pike?) Starfleet adopted the delta for all non-starship personnel for a certain amount of time.
Question: None
(could also help to explain the obvious hostility of Kirk's former academy classmates. Not only did they not get the job of starship captain, but also have to wear the delta insignia of Kirk's ship. Apparently they look forward to Kirk's fall with Schadenfreude: - strange, somehow reminds me of something...)

I don't claim to have all the answers, and I'm always open-minded to listen to alternate theories but reserve the right to examine these with the same scrutiny as mine are examined.

Bob
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Old February 27 2013, 01:38 PM   #96
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Different fans have different sensibilities when it comes to how much weight they place on canon.

Some seem to get off on trying to make it all fit together, as if it's historical documents.

To me, canon comes first, but not all canon gets elevated to my special place of things that I enjoy and revisit. I certainly don't subscribe to the notion that canon fits together into a consistent picture; it's fraught with production mistakes, contradictions, false starts, revisions, and things that shouldn't have been included in the first place.

There are whole episodes that I could comfortably go the rest of my life without ever seeing or even thinking about again (only slight exaggeration for effect on the latter part, there). I'm looking at you, Miri and Turnabout Intruder.
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Old February 27 2013, 01:44 PM   #97
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post

To me, canon comes first...
For me, the story comes first then continuity within the franchise. I don't care if they alter what has been done before as long as the story itself is worth it.
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Old February 27 2013, 02:00 PM   #98
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

BillJ wrote: View Post
CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post

To me, canon comes first...
For me, the story comes first then continuity within the franchise. I don't care if they alter what has been done before as long as the story itself is worth it.
Well, yeah. Quoting my words out of context like that, you'd think I was disagreeing.

Rather than addressing that point, in context I meant two particular things.

First, the process of watching an episode begins first with being exposed to canon. From there, I decide whether I like it enough to revisit it, or whether it goes into something like an intellectual garbage can.

Second, either way, like it or hate it, canon is canon, that can never be erased, only piled on top of.
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Old February 27 2013, 02:07 PM   #99
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

CorporalCaptain wrote: View Post
Well, yeah. Quoting my words out of context like that, you'd think I was disagreeing.
I wasn't really disagreeing with you just making a statement of how I prioritize things. I edited the post down simply because when I read someone's reply I hate having to scroll through complete posts that I've already read.
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Old February 27 2013, 02:11 PM   #100
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

OK, thanks for the clarification.

And I totally agree that story is a higher priority. Additionally, many of the best stories ignore the previous reality and replace it with their own.
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Old February 27 2013, 10:49 PM   #101
Robert Comsol
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Gentlemen,

I also agree that good story telling is more important than nitpicky canon, but I don't see how tiny technical "in-universe" details could possibly harm a good story.

If they did, I'd wonder if it's really a good story, on the other hand a good story should also add to continuity rather than flourish at its expense.

Bob
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Old March 2 2013, 07:12 PM   #102
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

So, just to recap: from all that we know from the discussions in this thread, we can conclude:

1. Gene Roddenberry wanted all starship personnel to wear the delta and all Starfleet Command personnel to wear the flowery star. While the delta was an original design from who knows where, the flowery star was something sold in a craft shop, and is in fact still commercially available today.

2. During the run-up to the production of "The Doomsday Machine," Bill Theiss, apparently unaware of the dictate regarding starship personnel, decided the character of Matt Decker needed a unique patch, representing that he was in fact from a starship other than the Enterprise. Somehow, this went unnoticed by the powers that be, and in Theiss mind, the concept that each starship had its own unique patch was validated.

3. That validation led Theiss to design a third starship patch for use in "The Omega Glory," which we see on the uniform worn by Morgan Woodward during his memorable portrayal of Capt Ronald Tracey, as well as Dr. Carter, the Exeter's late Chief Medical Officer (and a full commander... why wasn't McCoy one too?). However, during dailies, Bob Justman, who somehow didn't watch daillies featuring William Windom during the (I'm guessing) 3 or 4 days he was filmed during TDM (based on the varied beard growth seen), notices Tracey's patch and raises the red flag, quickly sending off a "what kind of fool are you" memo to Theiss, reminding him that all starship personnel are supposed to wear the delta regardless of the ship on which they serve. He also realizes that there's no way they can afford to reshoot the scenes already filmed with Woodward in them, so he says not to change the patch. Being very forward thinking, perhaps he even says to himself, "Maybe, just maybe, 40 years from now, overly interested fans of the show--who don't currently show up in our crappy Neilson ratings--will passionately discuss this seeming contradiction on some type of international network... maybe like a super modern Marconi machine that maybe even looks and works like a tricorder. Cool, eh?"

4. One week later, feeling appropiately chastised by Justman's memo, Theiss decides, "well, I want to use another patch for the character playing Wesley in "The Ultimate Computer," and the only other patch I know of that's approved to use is the flowery star, so I'll just use that." During dailies, Justman recognizes that flowery star as legit (that is, GR approved), makes no fuss regarding it's use, and all is happy again in Trekville. In fact, Justman maybe even says to himself, "That'll just make those future passionate discussions all the more passionate. Damn, why can't we generate that passion now with those friggin' Neilson families???"

5. Finally, during season three, with no money to even make doubleknit uniform shirts for all the dead crewmembers shown on the Defiant during the filming of "The Tholien Web," we see the delta is on their uniforms, although they're strangely hidden from sight... the positioning of the dead bodies and even the restraining harnesses seem to be strategically determined to avoid showing patches at all... so maybe they're not even on the uniforms at all! In any case, "we're gonna get cancelled" syndrome is probably setting in, and the giveadamn quotient for minor details like patches is rapidly drowning in the tanking ratings and shrinking production budget, so at this point, any 'future passionate discussions' Justman may be pondering are long gone from his increasingly frustrated fertile mind, replaced by thoughts like "I just want to get this over with!"

That about sums it all up...

Last edited by CrazyMatt; March 2 2013 at 07:33 PM. Reason: spelling! content!
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Old March 2 2013, 08:20 PM   #103
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

Absolutely beautiful, just made my day!

The only thing I wonder is Gene Roddenberry's participation in this. With Justman not being around, the individual ship's insignias needed to be authorized, so maybe Theiss brought it up to Gene who liked it and didn't (want to) remember the gentleman's agreement he had with Justman?

Bob
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Old March 2 2013, 10:06 PM   #104
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

In my opinion, Starfleet in the 2260's consisted of numerous sub-fleets, each having its own insignia. So Enterprise and the jerks in the officer's club in "Court Martial" are all in, say, the 1st Fleet (or maybe the EUSPA Fleet?) and Exeter, Constellation, and Antares (and Defiant as per "In a Mirror Darkly") each belonged to different sub-fleets under the larger umbrella of Starfleet.

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Old March 2 2013, 11:09 PM   #105
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Re: Starfleet Command Insignia

"the flowery star was something sold in a craft shop, and is in fact still commercially available today."

Where can you get that? I always liked it.
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