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Old July 18 2013, 09:52 PM   #16
davejames
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

It was a cool idea and Siddig did an excellent job with the episode, but I can definitely understand his frustration. It pretty much reveals that Bashir was putting on an "act" for the first half of the series, and pretending to be someone he wasn't in front of his own friends.

I mean, are we seriously supposed to believe he never once confided in O'Brien about this family secret? Or Dax, who he liked and confided in about all kinds of other things? Especially for something that didn't seem all that shameful.


Although still, in terms of false story notes, I don't think this comes close to the Odo/Kira romance. That is one I just didn't buy for a second.
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Old July 18 2013, 10:18 PM   #17
d'Anconia
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

No, that isn't completely correct. In an episode near the beginning of the series, he had said to Garak that he missed a question on his final, so that he wouldn't come in as the first in his class (or something similar to that?). After watching that episode, it is implied that he did that on purpose, so he could hide his enhancements.
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Old July 18 2013, 10:25 PM   #18
dub
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

davejames wrote: View Post
It was a cool idea and Siddig did an excellent job with the episode, but I can definitely understand his frustration. It pretty much reveals that Bashir was putting on an "act" for the first half of the series, and pretending to be someone he wasn't in front of his own friends.

I mean, are we seriously supposed to believe he never once confided in O'Brien about this family secret? Or Dax, who he liked and confided in about all kinds of other things? Especially for something that didn't seem all that shameful.
Genetic enhancement is illegal in the Federation, so he had good reason to keep quiet about it, even to his closest friends (who also happened to be in Starfleet). While you and I might not consider it particularly shameful, it's something that hurt Bashir deeply going back to his childhood. I think he kept quiet about it also because he was trying to forget about the whole thing. I don't think he was putting on an act as much as he was simply in denial about it. He wanted to be treated as a normal human being, so that's how he handled himself. He had moved on, and here he was forced to face it again which is the last thing he wanted to do. That was what I took away from it.

Although still, in terms of false story notes, I don't think this comes close to the Odo/Kira romance. That is one I just didn't buy for a second.
Well, I'm going to have to disagree with you on that one as well and I know there are strong feelings on both sides of this one. This built up for a long time, so it didn't really come out of nowhere. Odo had clearly fallen in love with Kira early on. After getting involved with several men who were her "type," Kira finally decided to go down this road with Odo, and it turned out to be a lovely thing for both of them. It was one of Star Trek's more beautiful romances (to me), hence my avatar.
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Old July 18 2013, 11:00 PM   #19
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

dub wrote: View Post
Genetic enhancement is illegal in the Federation, so he had good reason to keep quiet about it, even to his closest friends (who also happened to be in Starfleet). While you and I might not consider it particularly shameful, it's something that hurt Bashir deeply going back to his childhood. I think he kept quiet about it also because he was trying to forget about the whole thing. I don't think he was putting on an act as much as he was simply in denial about it. He wanted to be treated as a normal human being, so that's how he handled himself. He had moved on, and here he was forced to face it again which is the last thing he wanted to do. That was what I took away from it.
As did I. I don't think he was trying to deceive anyone as much as he was trying to distance himself from what happened. His parents were the ones who decided to have the re-sequencing done. Once Bashir learned the truth about his background (while in high school), he did everything he could to separate himself from what they'd done to him. That he stopped calling himself "Jules" as opposed to "Julian" is a nice way of illustrating how he felt about his past.

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Old July 18 2013, 11:24 PM   #20
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
Yeah...I really get his point. You don't give that kind of change to a character without talking to the actor about it.

Had I been the one in charge of that storyline, I'd personally have made it so that Bashir DIDN'T know he was enhanced, so that it was REVEALED to him--and he'd become furious with his parents for keeping that secret from him...but then come to realize that he's truly angry at himself, as well--as he's afraid that all this means that everything he's done, all the intelligence and skill he's trusted in--was all based on a lie.

Side note: I LOVE how he and Nikki are hanging out in real life, too!
I like your idea better!
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Old July 19 2013, 12:07 AM   #21
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Imagine his full name appearing in the main titles:

Siddig El Tahir El Fadil El Siddig Abderrahman Mohammed Ahmed Abdel Karim El Mahdi

as Dr. Bashir
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Old July 19 2013, 12:38 AM   #22
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Captain Kathryn wrote: View Post
Rush Limborg wrote: View Post
Yeah...I really get his point. You don't give that kind of change to a character without talking to the actor about it.

Had I been the one in charge of that storyline, I'd personally have made it so that Bashir DIDN'T know he was enhanced, so that it was REVEALED to him--and he'd become furious with his parents for keeping that secret from him...but then come to realize that he's truly angry at himself, as well--as he's afraid that all this means that everything he's done, all the intelligence and skill he's trusted in--was all based on a lie.

Side note: I LOVE how he and Nikki are hanging out in real life, too!
I like your idea better!
It would make more sense, given how the episode was resolved. Nonetheless, I think we'd would miss the poignant conversation between Bashir and his parents in the last act--a conversation focused on the fears of parents and how expectations affect children.
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Old July 19 2013, 12:40 AM   #23
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

lvsxy808 wrote: View Post
I think it's naive to expect the writers to have planned everything out in advance for a five-to-seven year show. Of course they only came up with it at the last minute - that's what they do with ALL their ideas, every episode was basically come up with at the last minute, because that's how TV works. (Or at least it did at the time, in the 90s. Nowadays there tends to be more planning ahead, but still not generally more than a season at a time with any specificity.)
They kinda did that with Babylon 5. They had everyone's character arc already written 'in pencil' even including how they'd write out a character who's actor ever wanted to leave the show.
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Old July 19 2013, 04:38 AM   #24
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

That twist is easily the worst decision they made in the entire history of DS9. It completely trivialized all the good things established about his character and it made absolutely no sense with his established traits.

It also established a systematic prejudice against children enhanced beyond their own control, which goes against everything established about the Federation. And IF they wanted to do that, they should have had a story about genetically enhanced kids who leave the Federation and take high paying Ferengi jobs or get recruited by the Romulan military. Or at the very least had other genetic kids say "Hey WAAIT a minute, I've been blacklisted my whole life, this Bashir gets a pass just because he managed to hide it long enough? Fuck that, if he gets to join Starfleet so do I." Instead all they did was have a bunch of lovable traitor lunatic geniuses who didn't challenge the system in any real way. If they had treated it a little more like telepaths in Babylon 5 it would have worked better. But instead they just made it this systematic prejudice that nobody questions and everyone goes along with. That was the worst of both worlds, it made the Federation less likable AND it whiffed an opportunity to say anything interesting about human nature.
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Old July 21 2013, 06:39 AM   #25
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

You know, I feel for Siddig a lot --- I don't know if this was covered in the interview, but Siddig was originally planned to play the part of Sisko. They didn't tell him they moved his part from Sisko to the Doctor (who as of that point was unnamed) until after he had already moved to America and until he showed up to shooting the day of.

Berman kind of screwed him, then screwed him then screwed him some more and I do really feel for the guy a lot. I mean how would ANYONE feel moving their entire life for a lead part only to get on set and find out not only aren't you the lead anymore, the writers have barely fleshed out your new character. It's only one step better then showing up to the set and finding out you no longer have a job.

The only redeeming fact about it is I had heard that because of his SGA contract, they didn't change his salaary at all; so they essentially paid Brooks and Siddig as the leads until at least season 3 when the contracts got renegotiated.

Regardless, no matter how you parse it, you *HAVE* to feel for the guy.
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Old July 21 2013, 12:37 PM   #26
LOKAI of CHERON
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Lighthammer wrote: View Post
You know, I feel for Siddig a lot --- I don't know if this was covered in the interview, but Siddig was originally planned to play the part of Sisko. They didn't tell him they moved his part from Sisko to the Doctor (who as of that point was unnamed) until after he had already moved to America and until he showed up to shooting the day of.

Berman kind of screwed him, then screwed him then screwed him some more and I do really feel for the guy a lot. I mean how would ANYONE feel moving their entire life for a lead part only to get on set and find out not only aren't you the lead anymore, the writers have barely fleshed out your new character. It's only one step better then showing up to the set and finding out you no longer have a job.

The only redeeming fact about it is I had heard that because of his SGA contract, they didn't change his salaary at all; so they essentially paid Brooks and Siddig as the leads until at least season 3 when the contracts got renegotiated.

Regardless, no matter how you parse it, you *HAVE* to feel for the guy.
Wow, I was completely unaware of this!
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Old July 21 2013, 02:31 PM   #27
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Me too. It certainly wasn't mentioned in the Companion!
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Old July 21 2013, 02:31 PM   #28
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Hober Mallow wrote: View Post
Imagine his full name appearing in the main titles:

Siddig El Tahir El Fadil El Siddig Abderrahman Mohammed Ahmed Abdel Karim El Mahdi

as Dr. Bashir
Huh. Must take him a week to sign any document that require full name signatures.
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Old July 21 2013, 08:05 PM   #29
Lighthammer
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

RandyS wrote: View Post
Hober Mallow wrote: View Post
Imagine his full name appearing in the main titles:

Siddig El Tahir El Fadil El Siddig Abderrahman Mohammed Ahmed Abdel Karim El Mahdi

as Dr. Bashir
Huh. Must take him a week to sign any document that require full name signatures.
You know, I sometimes wonder if Siddig would have used a more middle eastern name during DS9 as his stage name if by association, it might have tempered on some level people's outlook on the middle east.

I find myself thinking he had a chance to make a socio-economical statement with his role; though I won't be surprised if someone told me part of the deal was for him to take an American sounding name as his stage name.

Most people that don't know the nitty gritty about Trek tend be absolutely floored when I bring up some of Siddig's history and I know I'm only scratching the surface in a lot of ways.
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Old July 21 2013, 10:28 PM   #30
Tomalak
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Re: Alexander Siddig Interview: He reveals anger over changes to Bashi

Lighthammer wrote: View Post

You know, I sometimes wonder if Siddig would have used a more middle eastern name during DS9 as his stage name if by association, it might have tempered on some level people's outlook on the middle east.
So if he'd called himself "Mohammed Ahmed Abdel Karim", everyone would love Arabs? That seems wishful thinking, to say the least!

I find myself thinking he had a chance to make a socio-economical statement with his role; though I won't be surprised if someone told me part of the deal was for him to take an American sounding name as his stage name.
The whole point of changing his name was to reduce typecasting, so I doubt making a "socio-economical statement" was at the front of his mind.

They never did play on his heritage in any way, but then Star Trek has almost always been more subtle than that. Nichelle Nichols being African-American was never explicitly commented upon in Star Trek; indeed that was the whole point. She was just there, and no one felt the need to comment on it, or question that, which was a marked contrast to much of US society in the mid-sixties.

It's the same with LeVar Burton in TNG, Garrett Wang in Voyager.. no one questions or makes a "statement" that there are these black guys and Asians running around Starships. The are two exceptions to that, as far as I can tell, both involving Sisko. 'Far Beyond the Stars' most obviously, and 'Badda-Bing, Badda-Bang', when he talks about "our people" with Kasidy.
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