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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

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Old October 5 2013, 03:52 PM   #16
Christopher
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

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Well, whether that's really new as of STID depends largely upon whether one considers William Shatner's voiceover in TOS to function as words from the mouth of an omniscient narrator, speaking of the way things are in-universe. If you do (and I do), then it's reasonably explicit that the TOS Enterprise had been sent by Starfleet on a mission that had a planned duration of five years and that had the intended purpose to explore strange new worlds, seek out new life forms, etc. Perhaps you are arguing that the TOS Enterprise's flight path wasn't always dedicated to traveling in deep space, since she often returned to base, or that the mission was not one exclusively of exploration (both of which I'd concede)?
First: My point is that the Abramsverse is an alternate timeline. It diverged from the Prime history in 2233 and events unfolded differently there. So even if 5-year exploration tours are new as of 2259 in the Abramsverse, that does not prove that they were new as of 2259 in the Prime universe, because the histories are distinct.

Second: The TOS narration about the mission that the Enterprise was on as of the time of TOS itself does not prove anything about whether earlier 5-year missions existed. A single example is not evidence of a pattern. So maybe the 5-year mission the Enterprise was on from 2266-70 was one of several in the ship's history, or maybe it was the first one it had ever been on. We just don't know, because one example in isolation proves nothing.

And it's just not logical to assume that every single starship mission in the entirety of Starfleet is exactly 5 years long. There's no sense in that. Logically there would be many different kinds of mission of different durations. For instance -- the mission in the second pilot to probe the edge of the galaxy. It would've taken months of travel time just to get to the nearest face of the galactic disk and months to return, plus who knows how long on the survey in between. So it doesn't make sense to assume that a single dedicated months-long assignment would've been part of a "5-year mission" of general patrol and exploration. The mission profiles are too distinct. It makes more sense if, in 2265, Kirk was assigned a months-long mission the galactic rim, and then afterward, in 2266, he was assigned a 5-year general patrol/exploration tour.
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Old October 5 2013, 04:50 PM   #17
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

^ Ah, gotya. I misunderstood what you meant by the phrase "new as of STID". For some reason, by that I thought you meant "depicted in the franchise explicitly and unambiguously first in the movie STID". I misunderstood you probably because people on the board have debated whether or not the TOS Enterprise was really on a five year mission of exploration during the events of TOS, since it was never said so inside an episode. I'm not sure, but perhaps STID is the first time in the franchise when such a thing was said about an Enterprise on screen (outside of the voiceover narration).
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Old October 5 2013, 05:07 PM   #18
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

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I misunderstood you probably because people on the board have debated whether or not the TOS Enterprise was really on a five year mission of exploration during the events of TOS, since it was never said so inside an episode. I'm not sure, but perhaps STID is the first time in the franchise when such a thing was said about an Enterprise on screen (outside of the voiceover narration).
No; in ST:TMP, Kirk cited "my five years out there" as the reason why he was more qualified than Decker to command the mission, and in Voyager: "Q2," Icheb gave a report on what he described as Kirk's "historic five-year mission." So there are two canonical references to the TOS mission being 5 years long -- it's just that neither of them are in TOS (or TAS) proper, titles aside. And neither of them proves whether there were other 5-year missions before, simultaneous with, or after that one. If anything, the fact that Icheb specifically mentioned the mission's duration implies that five years may not have been the default, or at least that it was only one specific category of mission.

But both those references, if you disregard the opening narration, could simply indicate that the mission was open-ended in its planned duration and just happened to end five years after it began. So STID is the first canonical, in-story reference to a starship mission being planned in advance to be five years long, or to "a five-year mission" being a specific category of starship assignment.
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Old October 5 2013, 05:15 PM   #19
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

Cool.
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Old October 6 2013, 08:44 PM   #20
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

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Of course, other sources would later contradict this account, with Captain Pike having commanded several successful 5-year missions before Kirk, but that's pretty much par for the ST-continuity course.
I said earlier "relatively unscathed", but in fact, it's "relatively intact". [Novelization of TMP, p. 6]

Pike may have completed several 5YM, but was the "ship and crew relatively intact" each time?
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Old October 6 2013, 08:51 PM   #21
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Leto_II wrote: View Post
Of course, other sources would later contradict this account, with Captain Pike having commanded several successful 5-year missions before Kirk, but that's pretty much par for the ST-continuity course.
I said earlier "relatively unscathed", but in fact, it's "relatively intact". [Novelization of TMP, p. 6]

Pike may have completed several 5YM, but was the "ship and crew relatively intact" each time?
If Pike was not capable of bringing most of his crew home alive, would he have been allowed to remain in command?
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Old October 6 2013, 09:00 PM   #22
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Pike may have completed several 5YM, but was the "ship and crew relatively intact" each time?
If Pike hadn't brought his ship and crew back intact, would they have let him stay a captain, let alone promoted him to fleet captain?

See, this is why the idea that Kirk was somehow unique in bringing his ship and crew back from a 5YM is, frankly, rather idiotic. It's a handy explanation for why, in the conceit with which Roddenberry framed the novel, that captain's adventures would've been chosen over others as the ones to be adapted into an "inaccurately 'larger than life'" TV series, but beyond that it doesn't make a lot of sense and it's overly aggrandizing. I mean, seriously, if Starfleet invested that much of its resources and personnel into multiple deep-space exploration surveys and only one captain came out of it with the ship and crew largely intact, the resultant scandal would be enormous. Plenty of heads would roll at both the command and admiralty levels, and there'd be some massive overhauls of how Starfleet did things. They certainly wouldn't have dared undertake any further "5-year missions" after that.

True, TOS did show that nearly every other Connie the Enterprise encountered got destroyed or lost its crew, but extrapolating that to the whole fleet is excessive. And sure, you could argue that the reason Kirk got promoted to Chief of Starfleet Operations was because he was the only marginally competent officer in the whole service and was tasked with rebuilding the organization from the ground up, but is that a remotely desirable interpretation?
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Old October 6 2013, 09:27 PM   #23
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

Timewalker wrote: View Post
Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Leto_II wrote: View Post
Of course, other sources would later contradict this account, with Captain Pike having commanded several successful 5-year missions before Kirk, but that's pretty much par for the ST-continuity course.
I said earlier "relatively unscathed", but in fact, it's "relatively intact". [Novelization of TMP, p. 6]

Pike may have completed several 5YM, but was the "ship and crew relatively intact" each time?
If Pike was not capable of bringing most of his crew home alive, would he have been allowed to remain in command?
Pike's crew was 203 in "The Cage" whereas Kirk had a crew of 430. Maybe Pike set off with the same number of crew that Kirk did later?
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Old October 7 2013, 11:07 AM   #24
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Re: Pre-TOS five year missions in the books

King Daniel Into Darkness wrote: View Post
Pike's crew was 203 in "The Cage" whereas Kirk had a crew of 430. Maybe Pike set off with the same number of crew that Kirk did later?
Eeek!
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