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

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Old March 18 2013, 11:46 PM   #16
Robert Comsol
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Funny, when I saw the thread title I had something else in mind.

But Wesley's "Jim, what are you doing?" is indeed rather odd, since Kirk says at the end of the episode that he knew Robert Wesley.

So it's safe to assume that this is mutual and Bob Wesley should know that Kirk wasn't deliberately killing hundreds of fellow Starfleet crew members just because Wesley upsetted him by calling him "Captain Dunsel" (add to this he would have focused his revenge on the Lexington).

Where the Wesley character confused me, too, was that he was apparently eager to eliminate the profession of starship captain / commander. Probably he wouldn't like to serve under the command of a computer, either and one may wonder how an M-5 would have resolved the situation in the TAS episode where the life of Wesley and his daughter were threatened.

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Old March 19 2013, 12:40 AM   #17
C.E. Evans
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
Funny, when I saw the thread title I had something else in mind.

But Wesley's "Jim, what are you doing?" is indeed rather odd, since Kirk says at the end of the episode that he knew Robert Wesley.

So it's safe to assume that this is mutual and Bob Wesley should know that Kirk wasn't deliberately killing hundreds of fellow Starfleet crew members just because Wesley upsetted him by calling him "Captain Dunsel" (add to this he would have focused his revenge on the Lexington).
I actually don't think it's safe to assume that at all.

The only thing that Wesley really has to go on is that the Enterprise is attacking other Federation ships with weapons at full power. Wesley didn't know that the M-5 could malfunction so badly that Kirk could lose total control of his ship. In fairly short order, though, it became a moot point because the Enterprise had to be stopped regardless who was in control of her.
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Old March 19 2013, 01:11 AM   #18
iguana_tonante
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

In line with C.E. Evans' comment and strictly playing the devil's advocate here, but still...

BillJ wrote: View Post
Did he really think that Kirk could slice up four starships that quickly and effectively?
Well, he is James Tiberius Kirk, tactical genius and bad-ass captain of the Enterprise. He's a brilliant commander, an experienced soldier, and an unconventional tactician. So maybe he could slice up four starships that quickly and effectively.

Sadara wrote: View Post
Wesley has known Kirk for years and should know that sort of behavior isn't part of Kirk's character.
Or maybe it is. Wesley has known Kirk for years, we have only see him for, what? 50 hours? And that's being generous with screen time. So maybe Wesley knows something that we don't know.

Sadara wrote: View Post
He seemed to have more faith in that M5 machine than Kirk apparently.
Which maybe tells us more about Kirk that it does about Wesley.

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
But Wesley's "Jim, what are you doing?" is indeed rather odd, since Kirk says at the end of the episode that he knew Robert Wesley.

So it's safe to assume that this is mutual and Bob Wesley should know that Kirk wasn't deliberately killing hundreds of fellow Starfleet crew members just because Wesley upsetted him by calling him "Captain Dunsel" (add to this he would have focused his revenge on the Lexington).
Again, same reasoning here. Maybe Kirk, a brilliant but unconventional mind, is under strict surveillance from Starfleet, which is just waiting him to snap, but can't do without his experience and genius. Think about it: did anybody in Starfleet raise an eyebrow when they believed Kirk crippled Gorkon's ship and sent people to assassinate him?
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Old March 19 2013, 02:33 AM   #19
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

iguana_tonante wrote: View Post
Well, he is James Tiberius Kirk, tactical genius and bad-ass captain of the Enterprise. He's a brilliant commander, an experienced soldier, and an unconventional tactician. So maybe he could slice up four starships that quickly and effectively.
Under ordinary circumstances I'd agree. But he only had twenty crewmen aboard, apparently not enough to run a ship effectively.

KIRK: Twenty? I can't run a starship with twenty crew.
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Old March 19 2013, 05:48 AM   #20
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

It's just bad writing.

This episode is full of it. For instance anything as complicated as a starship is going to be internally vulnerable to sabotage by its chief engineer. And the idea that any system could bypass manual override means it ain't actually a manual override.
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Old March 19 2013, 07:14 AM   #21
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Unless you can claim to know how the Enterprise is wired and what its firmware is like, I'd say you can't rule out that the M-5 can't somehow actively rewire the ship the way today's virus software seems to be able to commandeer people's computers despite their security protocols.

Thematically, the story built-up conflict in which it could be plausible for Kirk to go nuts. The prior relationship with Wesley was only meant to give Kirk inner-doubts. Why was Wesley so approving of the M-5 when Kirk was skeptical? Kirk wonders about this out loud to McCoy. Kirk and Wesley had to come from a common background and yet they diverged over their concept of progress.

What it would have amounted to is a "going postal" situation from someone who feels they're about to lose their career, which to many people is their whole reason to exist. These things happen more often than we'd like to admit. It's easy to shrug it off because we view Kirk as a superhero icon, but within TOS, he was a rank-and-file captain and not the comic book hero he would later become.
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Old March 19 2013, 09:16 AM   #22
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Indeed, even we know that Kirk is fallible. In "Obsession", we learn that for the past decade, he has been regretting not being trigger-happy enough. It would be pretty natural for him to have gathered a reputation of always treating a superior enemy to an immediate and ruthless surprise attack and then opening hailing frequencies.. It would be a small step from that to snapping in face of another "superior enemy", under pressure of the above sort.

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Old March 19 2013, 03:45 PM   #23
J.T.B.
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

I think it's fairly simple: Kirk was still the captain, he hadn't ceded command to the M-5. No matter what the computer system was doing, Kirk was ultimately responsible. If the M-5 didn't have a kill switch, that's Kirk's responsibility. If the kill switch didn't work, that's still Kirk's responsibility. Even if there were mitigating factors, that would be something for an inquiry later, not part of Wesley's immediate concerns.
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Old March 19 2013, 03:49 PM   #24
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

I'm not sure how its Kirk's responsibility that Starfleet installed faulty hardware/software on his ship?
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Old March 19 2013, 04:13 PM   #25
C.E. Evans
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

BillJ wrote: View Post
I'm not sure how its Kirk's responsibility that Starfleet installed faulty hardware/software on his ship?
That's something that an inquiry finds out later, but captains have historically been held responsible for everything that happens on their ship (including the loss of their ship). If the inquiry finds out that there was nothing the captain could have done, then the captain is cleared. It's standard procedure in most instances, IMO (I think Picard faced an inquiry following the loss of the Stargazer, was found not at fault, and then went on with business as usual).
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Old March 19 2013, 04:26 PM   #26
AtoZ
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Sadara wrote: View Post
In the Ultimate Computer, he knew the M5 was being tested in its abilities to run a starship and yet when things go wrong he assumes Kirk is just having a tantrum instead of considering the possibility that the M5 malfunctioned. Not exactly command material in my opinion.
Yes, and he acted like a prick in the transporter room smirking and laughing at Kirk, who was in the midst of swallowing the notion of redundancy. Did not such advancement pose an equal threat to Wesley.....or did he have some inside scoop/deal with Starfleet on a cushy advancement.
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Old March 19 2013, 04:36 PM   #27
Timo
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

No matter what the computer system was doing, Kirk was ultimately responsible.
Juridically, yeah. But that shouldn't affect how Wesley assesses the tactical situation at hand. If a ship is about to run aground because of a faulty route marker, the concern of the eyewitness should be the marker, rather than the skipper's theoretical responsibility.

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Old March 19 2013, 04:36 PM   #28
Pavonis
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Wesley may have been eyeing a postion in the admiralty. Starship captains may be obsolete, but he figured humans would still order starships around!
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Old March 19 2013, 04:39 PM   #29
AtoZ
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Pavonis wrote: View Post
Wesley may have been eyeing a postion in the admiralty. Starship captains may be obsolete, but he figured humans would still order starships around!
A Pharisee in the making, no doubt.

I did like the character even if the writing seemed uneven. The actor playing Wesley had unmistakeable charisma.
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Old March 19 2013, 05:15 PM   #30
Marsden
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Re: Commodore Wesley confuses me

Grant wrote: View Post
Honestly i always thought the same thing. Why couldn't they have given him one measley line to make him seem more 'with-it.'


"Jim, if M-5 is out of control you have to disable it quick or we'll be forced to destroy the enterprise!"
Two reasons why this line would have been pointless.

Enterprise couldn't respond and I think Wesley was feed so much information about how frikkin' wonderful M-5 was that this never even entered his thought process. Kirk said the government bought it and they were going to make it work. And being a Commodore, Wesley's personal job of ordering ships around probably wasn't in jeopardy, just the captains under him, which he didn't show too much sympathy for, did he?

Really, how often do you expect your new car to turn on you and attack? It's supposed to be a new computer, they're up to their asses in computers, why would one turn into a crazy kill box? And Daystrom himself is on the ship with the M-5, if there were any problems, surely he would take care of it? Right?

I don't think anyone planned for M-5 to suck the energy out of the warp engines like a slurpy, so any previous manual overides were useless. How does one manually control a starship, do you mean there are actual sticks and cables to fly it?

Sorry if I'm posting short, I'm not trying to be nasty, I just think it would have been the farthest thing from his mind, he was basically in the position of having an out of control starship to deal with at that point, it had to be stopped whoever was in control.
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