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The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old June 18 2013, 11:50 PM   #31
CelticViking
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Christopher wrote: View Post
You're right that the Klingons and Romulans had pretty much undergone a reversal by the TNG era, but it doesn't make sense to blame Ron Moore for that, since he came along after it had already happened. It began with The Search for Spock, in which the villains were originally written as Romulans -- flying Birds of Prey with cloaking devices and talking about honor -- but then got switched to Klingons without the script being substantially rewritten at all. That was the beginning of the association with Klingons and honor.
I am going to disagree somewhat with this. The Klingons of Star Trek III are still not Samurai-Biker-Vikings with no brains and an endless need to stop everything to settle honour debts. They are ruthless and vicious, but not idiots... for the most part.

In Star Trek V we see the TNG Klingon taint in full force... I mean the half naked bare chested Klingon BOP commander, his female body builder officer... etc... Then, thankfully, but Star Trek VI we are back to TOS Klingons, those wonderfully sinister bastards.

Notice none of them have ragged teeth?

John M. Ford's Klingons have always been the ones for me.
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Old June 18 2013, 11:56 PM   #32
Sran
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

CelticViking wrote: View Post
I am going to disagree somewhat with this. The Klingons of Star Trek III are still not Samurai-Biker-Vikings with no brains and an endless need to stop everything to settle honour debts. They are ruthless and vicious, but not idiots... for the most part.
I don't know. Boarding the Enterprise not even remotely suspicious of a trap?

CelticViking wrote:
In Star Trek V we see the TNG Klingon taint in full force... I mean the half naked bare chested Klingon BOP commander, his female body builder officer... etc... Then, thankfully, but Star Trek VI we are back to TOS Klingons, those wonderfully sinister bastards.
And I never understood that. Shatner should've known better.

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Old June 18 2013, 11:56 PM   #33
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

CelticViking wrote: View Post
I am going to disagree somewhat with this. The Klingons of Star Trek III are still not Samurai-Biker-Vikings with no brains and an endless need to stop everything to settle honour debts.
I never said they were. I just said the movie was the first step in the process of their transformation, the first time we saw them talk about honor. TNG then picked up on that passing reference and expanded on it as part of its redefinition of the Klingons.
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Old June 19 2013, 12:07 AM   #34
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Sran wrote: View Post
I don't know. Boarding the Enterprise not even remotely suspicious of a trap?
We are Klingons!



I said "for the most part" lol!
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Old June 19 2013, 12:13 AM   #35
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

CelticViking wrote: View Post
I said "for the most part" lol!
Yes, you did.

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Old June 21 2013, 07:37 PM   #36
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Since we're comparing the TOS Romulans and Klingons for traces of honor, let's look at their episodes.

The Klingons debut in "Errand of Mercy" by occupying a seemingly primitive planet and "executing" hundreds of Organians, all for Organia's strategic location against the Federation.
The Romulans debut in "Balance of Terror" by destroying several Earth outposts and killing dozens of Starfleet personnel, then attacking the Enterprise to test the Federation's military preparedness.
Both are evil aggressors. The Romulans have the one virtue of attacking only someone their own size.

The Klingons, though restricted by the Organian Peace Treaty (Star Trek's Mutual Assured Destruction), continue targeting less-advanced worlds by covert means that the TNG Klingons would call dishonorable. They foment a coup in "Friday's Child," poison grain meant for thousands of UFP colonists in "The Trouble With Tribbles," and they give the North Vietnamese superior firearms in "A Private Little War." Kang faces a little ball of hate instead of primitives in "Day of the Dove," but at least he knows when not to fight.

In later Romulan episodes, however, it's the Enterprise that violates the Neutral Zone, doing so in "The Enterprise Incident" to steal the cloaking device. The Romulans, though hostile, aren't even villains in these cases.

The Klingons were meant as the allegory for the Soviet Union, and so obviously it has more meaning if they change and make peace with the Federation. And Ron Moore or any writer can argue correctly that most societies will change over the course of a century, so the Klingons and Romulans can, too.

However, the portrayal of the 2 empires in TOS to me hinted more at eventual genuine understanding with the Romulans and a peace-through-comeuppance for the Klingons, like they got in James Blish's "Spock Must Die."

It's easy for me to imagine a Romulan version of Worf in TNG, exploring the martial side of Vulcanoids. He'd agree with the TOS Romulans that there's no honor in defeating the defenseless.
Instead of plotlines about the Klingon civil war, I suppose we'd have several episodes involving Worf with the Vulcan reunification movement, and episodes where the Klingons try to split the Federation/Star Empire alliance or the Romulans try to push the UFP into joining them in a war to destroy the Klingon Empire. And you still could have all 3 team up against the Dominion in Deep Space Nine.
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Old June 22 2013, 12:40 AM   #37
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

blueshirt wrote: View Post
It's easy for me to imagine a Romulan version of Worf in TNG, exploring the martial side of Vulcanoids. He'd agree with the TOS Romulans that there's no honor in defeating the defenseless.

Instead of plotlines about the Klingon civil war, I suppose we'd have several episodes involving Worf with the Vulcan reunification movement, and episodes where the Klingons try to split the Federation/Star Empire alliance or the Romulans try to push the UFP into joining them in a war to destroy the Klingon Empire. And you still could have all 3 team up against the Dominion in Deep Space Nine.
I wonder who the Romulan character might've been. Was he or she someone we've already seen in either TNG or DS9? Maybe someone like Subcommander N'Vek, who was part of Spock's underground movement. There was also the Romulan Commander who appeared in "The Chase" and voiced interest in the possiblity of peace between Romulus and Earth. Maybe under different circumstances, he finds his way to Starfleet in a future with a Romulan-Federation alliance.

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Old June 22 2013, 03:52 AM   #38
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

I just like to think that generalizations are just that, generalizations.

Not all Klingons act the same. Some are honorable (Martok, General Chang, Kang) , some are dishonorable (Duras, TOS-Kor). Some Romulans have honor (Balance of Terror Commander, Admiral Jarok, Lady romulan from nemesis), others are deceitful and sly (Tomolak, Sela). Humans are the same. Plenty of good and bad humans who all act very different.

Sure, there are certain generalizations that may hold true for the majority of each respective race, but I don't mind the different interpretations throughout the franchise. It's more realistic.
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Old June 22 2013, 04:27 AM   #39
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

You know I have often thought ithat the TOS era Klingons and Romulans roles were flipped in the TNG era, myself. In TOS the Romulans were the honorable adversaries while the Klingons were duplicitous. But upon further thought, I don't think that is exactly what happened.

When you think of it, TOS Klingons being treacherous and like TNG-Romulans was only true in Errand of Mercy and Trouble with Tribbles. In Day of the Dove, they seemed more like the TNG era Klingons. In TMP we really didn't get a sense of the Klingons being honorable, but they definitely were militaristic. In TSFS, Kruge, though he was a renegade (much like Kirk was as well), Kruge was doing what he thought was honorable for the Klingon Empire and even seemed to treat Kirk with respect (momentarily) when he first found out he had Kirk's son killed. In TFF and TUC, you had both treacherous Klingons, but also honorable ones, too.

The Romulans were paranoid about the federation in both the TOS and TNG eras. We also have seen both treacherous Romulans, and honorable ones. I don't see much difference in the way they were portrayed in the two eras. Also, one must remember most of the time when someone is referring to Romulans as sneaks, betrayers, and dishonorable, it is usually Worf or some other klingon, and their view is not exactly unbiased (Worf in particular since his parents were killed by Romulans, and he almost had to take the wrap for a Duras\Romulan plot). But when you get down to it, there are as many examples of Klingons acting dishonorably in both TOS and TNG, as there are Romulans. Also, Sela, while one of the most treacherous Romulans, was also half human, and had an ax to grind against the federation and Picard, so she was more willing to get the better of them by any means necessary.


So, I think Ron Moore only expanded upon the Klingons and Romulans as they had been previously portrayed and did not intend a role reversal.
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Old June 22 2013, 02:37 PM   #40
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

TheSubCommander wrote: View Post
In TSFS, Kruge, though he was a renegade (much like Kirk was as well), Kruge was doing what he thought was honorable for the Klingon Empire and even seemed to treat Kirk with respect (momentarily) when he first found out he had Kirk's son killed.
Hmm, I never got that impression. Kruge always struck me as being about as nasty and malicious a Klingon as we ever saw.


Also, one must remember most of the time when someone is referring to Romulans as sneaks, betrayers, and dishonorable, it is usually Worf or some other klingon, and their view is not exactly unbiased (Worf in particular since his parents were killed by Romulans, and he almost had to take the wrap for a Duras\Romulan plot).
Excellent point. People are often too quick to assume that anything asserted by a character in a story is the absolute truth. But people constantly say things that aren't true or accurate. They have prejudices, they make mistakes, they lie to themselves or others to serve their agendas, or they just have honest differences of interpretation. In fiction, as in real life, one person's unsubstantiated assertions only tell you what that person believes, not what's objectively true. It's always important to question their motives or biases, to be aware of what might be coloring their view.


So, I think Ron Moore only expanded upon the Klingons and Romulans as they had been previously portrayed and did not intend a role reversal.
As I said before, it's a mistake to define the question as though it were exclusively Moore's responsibility. He didn't even join the writing staff until the third season, by which point TNG's portrayals of both Klingons and Romulans had already been established. And he was never more than a junior staff member on TNG -- he was only a story editor in seasons 3-4 and a co-producer on seasons 5-6, only becoming a full producer in season 7. However much his Klingon-centric scripts may have stood out to the viewers, he was working under several other people, especially Michael Piller and Jeri Taylor.

It's probably Maurice Hurley, who scripted "Heart of Glory" and was the showrunner of TNG's second season, who deserves the lion's share of the credit for defining TNG-era Klingons, even if Moore is remembered for how he subsequently took that definition and ran with it.
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Old June 22 2013, 02:43 PM   #41
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Mr_Homn wrote: View Post
Not all Klingons act the same. Some are honorable (Martok, General Chang, Kang) , some are dishonorable (Duras, TOS-Kor). Some Romulans have honor (Balance of Terror Commander, Admiral Jarok, Lady romulan from nemesis), others are deceitful and sly (Tomolak, Sela). Humans are the same. Plenty of good and bad humans who all act very different.
I wouldn't call General Chang honorable considering that he betrayed his own people by arranging Gorkon's assassination.

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Old June 22 2013, 02:59 PM   #42
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

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I wouldn't call General Chang honorable considering that he betrayed his own people by arranging Gorkon's assassination.
Good point. Society conditions us to mistake class and refinement for honor. Chang may have been well-spoken and quoted Shakespeare, but he was still a liar and a traitor. Even by Klingon standards he was dishonorable, because he hid behind hired assassins rather than challenging and fighting Gorkon openly.
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Old June 22 2013, 03:03 PM   #43
Sran
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Christopher wrote: View Post
Hmm, I never got that impression. Kruge always struck me as being about as nasty and malicious a Klingon as we ever saw.
I agree. Not only was he a renegade, but he also was responsible for the deaths of two crews (Grissom and the merchant vessel), a Federation scientist, and (indirectly) the destruction of one of Starfleet's most celebrated vessels. And he did all of this in the name of acquiring further knowledge of the Genesis experiment, even as his government gradually worked toward peace with the UFP.

As an aside, I always laughed the Klingon Ambassador's claims that Kirk should have been extradited following Kruge's death and the theft of the BOP. Kruge took his ship and crew into Federation space- to a sector that even Starfleet officers were forbidden to enter without permission- and carried out each of the actions I've listed above.

The Ambassador comes off as a bully in his exchange with Sarek and President Roth. He argues that the Klingons have the right to preserve their race but then whines about Kirk standing for himself and his crew. What did he think was going to happen after Kruge killed Kirk's son? Granted, Kruge didn't realize what he'd done until a grief-stricken Kirk shouted at him and called him names, but he shouldn't have ordered David's death in the first place, nor should he have taken two Starfleet officers as additional hostages. Kirk was absolutely justified in taking action to protect his crew and preventing the Enterprise from being captured by the Klingons.

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Old June 22 2013, 03:08 PM   #44
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Christopher wrote: View Post
Good point. Society conditions us to mistake class and refinement for honor. Chang may have been well-spoken and quoted Shakespeare, but he was still a liar and a traitor. Even by Klingon standards he was dishonorable, because he hid behind hired assassins rather than challenging and fighting Gorkon openly.
Chang reminds me somewhat of the various villains played by Sir Christopher Lee in that he's exceptionally charismatic- even charming- when dealing with others, be they allies, opponents, or otherwise. It's easy to give him more credit than he deserves because he carries himself so well, but his outward appearance is really just a smokescreen to mask his duplicity and treachery.

It's fortunate that Kirk and company foiled his plans at Khitomer. I've no doubt he'd eventually have taken the Klingon throne away from Azetbur and run the Empire into the ground in a bloody war with the UFP.

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Old June 22 2013, 03:28 PM   #45
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Re: Did Ron Moore get the Klingons / Romulans the wrong way round in T

Christopher wrote: View Post
TheSubCommander wrote: View Post
In TSFS, Kruge, though he was a renegade (much like Kirk was as well), Kruge was doing what he thought was honorable for the Klingon Empire and even seemed to treat Kirk with respect (momentarily) when he first found out he had Kirk's son killed.
Hmm, I never got that impression. Kruge always struck me as being about as nasty and malicious a Klingon as we ever saw.


Also, one must remember most of the time when someone is referring to Romulans as sneaks, betrayers, and dishonorable, it is usually Worf or some other klingon, and their view is not exactly unbiased (Worf in particular since his parents were killed by Romulans, and he almost had to take the wrap for a Duras\Romulan plot).
Excellent point. People are often too quick to assume that anything asserted by a character in a story is the absolute truth. But people constantly say things that aren't true or accurate. They have prejudices, they make mistakes, they lie to themselves or others to serve their agendas, or they just have honest differences of interpretation. In fiction, as in real life, one person's unsubstantiated assertions only tell you what that person believes, not what's objectively true. It's always important to question their motives or biases, to be aware of what might be coloring their view.


So, I think Ron Moore only expanded upon the Klingons and Romulans as they had been previously portrayed and did not intend a role reversal.
As I said before, it's a mistake to define the question as though it were exclusively Moore's responsibility. He didn't even join the writing staff until the third season, by which point TNG's portrayals of both Klingons and Romulans had already been established. And he was never more than a junior staff member on TNG -- he was only a story editor in seasons 3-4 and a co-producer on seasons 5-6, only becoming a full producer in season 7. However much his Klingon-centric scripts may have stood out to the viewers, he was working under several other people, especially Michael Piller and Jeri Taylor.

It's probably Maurice Hurley, who scripted "Heart of Glory" and was the showrunner of TNG's second season, who deserves the lion's share of the credit for defining TNG-era Klingons, even if Moore is remembered for how he subsequently took that definition and ran with it.

Very good points. Regarding Kruge, he definitely was written as the villain and definitely was coldblooded and nasty (killing his lover and the rest of the smuggling vessel in the beginning, having unarmed hostages murdered, in fact wanting to take hostages in the first place). But when I say he was driven by honor, I mean his own sense of honor code, even if it was warped.

As to Ron Moore following suit, IMHO, he gets the credit or blame (depending on how you look at it) for the Klingons and Romulans, but when it comes to the Klingons, as you correctly point out, he only continue the tone started with the introduction of Worf, and the episode Heart of Glory.

And really, they HAD to change the Klingons a little bit, and make them more honorable, because if they were all dishonorable, bloodthirsty betrayers like TOS Kor, wouldn't it violate the Federations' basic principles to ally themselves with the Klingons? I mean the very term Empire in Klingon Empire indicates that the Klingons take over world by force. So they had to tone down their villainy somehow, hence the code of honor concept.

Likewise, the Romulans seem almost honorable in TOS. Even the Commander in BOT says to Kirk, "In another reality, I might have called you friend." The female Commander was acting completely honorable to Spock, and showed the Enterprise mercy for his sake. In fact, in the Enterprise Incident, technically speaking, it was the Federation that was in the wrong in this case...they violated Romulan space and treaty, and stole the Romulan's new cloaking device! So, when it comes to the TNG era, is it any wonder that the Romulans were made more villainous?

Personally, I always had hoped that there would have been a peace between the Romulans and Federation, though the reboot movie put a nail in that coffin forever. It seemed that they were moving that direction between Spock going to Romulus, the Federation-Romulan alliance during the Dominion war, and the friendly overtures of Donatra to Picard, during the battle with the Scimitar. It is unfortunate we didn't get at least one more TNG movie before the reboot because I think it would have been possible to end the TNG era with a peace between the Romulans and Federation.
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