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

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Old January 17 2014, 07:35 AM   #91
CorporalCaptain
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Besides in "Balance of Terror" to relieve Stiles, Uhura was also reading the map at the beginning of "The Man Trap", and in a very similar scene in "The Naked Time" that was probably shot at the same time (which was caught by Harvey recently).
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Old January 17 2014, 07:43 AM   #92
Nerys Myk
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

We have seen women at helm



and navigation

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Old January 17 2014, 07:43 AM   #93
Robbiesan
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?


Here's the "Star Trek Giant Poster Book" issue 12 that featured Uhura. I can't emphasize enough how unusual this was for women at the time. I doubt there were any US female pilots in military aviation in such a role in 1967. It was rather a big deal when the Israelis began using women in combat and I think that they also had female pilots by around 1972.

I'd bet there were Soviet female pilots much sooner based upon female inclusion in the military in a prominent role during WW2.
EDIT: Yep. Here's Marina Raskova during the war.

And highly decorated....

While Communism has committed some of the worst massacres in history, it's a shame that people don't realize the tremendous contributions of Soviet women in combat during WW2.
See:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marina_Raskova

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Old January 17 2014, 07:50 AM   #94
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Warped9 wrote: View Post
Well women actually did operate machinery in factories and the like and they'd been doing it since WWI. I raise the point about giving Uhura the con because of Number One being First Officer in "The Cage." So it should have been a minor thing for Kirk to have said once or twice that Uhura take the con. The door had already been opened, and additionally we had already seen a black male as a Commodore in "Court Martial." In 2nd season we also got to see Lt. Cmdr. Anne Mulhall in "Return To Tomorrow."

So we have already had a woman as second-in-command. We've had a black male of flag rank and a woman of higher rank than Lieutenant. So to not see Uhura given the con on one or two occasions (in TOS) is a miss in my book.
Agreed with provisions about US history.
Post-Pearl Harbor, when the US entered WW2, women were sorely needed for operating heavy machinery i.e. the Rosie the Riveter era. This actually accelerated the feminist movement in the USA.

On the other hand post-WW2, there was a big propaganda campaign to be patriotic and for women to leave those jobs so men could be hired who had served as soldiers. As a result a lot of women stopped being operators.

In my region there were very few female operators in factories until the later seventies. It was highly discouraged.

So you actually had women being asked to be patriotic and serve their country by doing what had been male roles, but then to be patriotic and leave those roles so men could do them.

Then to have Uhura, a black female navigating was even more unusual as black women were often still shown in subservient roles on television. There are exceptions on television, some that we've discussed, but many professional black women were in occupations as nurses and teachers far more than any other profession.

Last edited by Robbiesan; January 17 2014 at 10:05 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old January 17 2014, 06:55 PM   #95
J.T.B.
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
Yes. This should have happened. It is especially egregious in Catspaw when they brought in DeSalle as a guest star instead of just giving the conn to Uhura. (Yay, a TOS comment! )
I agree completely about wishing Uhura had been given the conn. But I always liked the DeSalle situation; it made the ship seem more real, like there were other senior officers that we didn't see because their normal duties were elsewhere, as you would expect in a complex vessel with 400+ people aboard.
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Old January 17 2014, 07:03 PM   #96
BillJ
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
Yes. This should have happened. It is especially egregious in Catspaw when they brought in DeSalle as a guest star instead of just giving the conn to Uhura. (Yay, a TOS comment! )
I agree completely about wishing Uhura had been given the conn. But I always liked the DeSalle situation; it made the ship seem more real, like there were other senior officers that we didn't see because their normal duties were elsewhere, as you would expect in a complex vessel with 400+ people aboard.
Do we ever see any non-bridge crew in command in any of the spin-offs (outside a guest captain/admiral)? I'm really struggling to remember a time?
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Old January 17 2014, 07:19 PM   #97
T'Girl
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
TNG also had a number of female admirals who had to have been captains previously.
Modern day it is pretty common to reach the rank of admiral without being the captain of a ship during your career.

Robbiesan wrote: View Post
I can only think of one time that Uhura piloted the helm ...
Maybe you're thinking of Janice Rand, she was at the helm in one episode.

BillJ wrote: View Post
Do we ever see any non-bridge crew in command in any of the spin-offs (outside a guest captain/admiral)? I'm really struggling to remember a time?
Deanna Troi was in command in Disastor, I don't think legally she should have been, not being a qualified bridge officer at the time. But Chief O'Brien obviously did not want Ensign Ro in command of the ship and so he employed a little "advice from the chief" (read bullshit) and convinced both officers that Troi was in command solely owing to her rank.

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Old January 17 2014, 07:44 PM   #98
Robbiesan
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Looking back, I believe Uhura was at the navigator's position three times. I have the unshakable memory of her at the conn at least once, but I guess that was only in the animated series. I feel certain she was at the piloting position at least once, but I can't find evidence of it anywhere.

It's rather shocking that someone in real life could make admiral and not have commanded a ship in any recent times. In history people took command of naval battles without prior experience in such things (both in ancient and late medieval history), and I guess that's what's happened in real life in the modern and postmodern period. When did that happen? Do you have a link?
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Old January 17 2014, 07:44 PM   #99
J.T.B.
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

BillJ wrote: View Post
Do we ever see any non-bridge crew in command in any of the spin-offs (outside a guest captain/admiral)? I'm really struggling to remember a time?
I remember the TNG season one "The Arsenal of Freedom" where the chief engineer LT Logan came to the bridge to relieve LTJG La Forge and there was a big argument over who should be in charge, which was incredibly stupid.

T'Girl wrote: View Post
Modern day it is pretty common to reach the rank of admiral without being the captain of a ship during your career.
In what navy? In the US Navy that would be very uncommon, except for staff corps (supply, medical, dental, nurse, chaplain, civil engineer, JAG) and restricted line (engineering duty, intelligence, information warfare, HR, public affairs etc) . About the only line officers who reach flag rank without having commanded a ship are aviation officers who commanded air squadrons and wings instead.
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Old January 18 2014, 05:48 PM   #100
T'Girl
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Yes, as you yourself point out, there are career paths that lead to the rank of admiral that don't involve being the captain of a ship at any point.

I would point out that there are enough of those career paths for them to be considered "common."

By law I believe the number of US Navy admirals is limited to something like 210 or 220.


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Old January 18 2014, 10:51 PM   #101
J.T.B.
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

T'Girl wrote: View Post
Yes, as you yourself point out, there are career paths that lead to the rank of admiral that don't involve being the captain of a ship at any point.

I would point out that there are enough of those career paths for them to be considered "common."
You're right, I was thinking of the majority of USN flag officers being line officers, which they are, but there are enough of the others to fairly use the word "common."
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Old March 23 2015, 03:19 AM   #102
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Warped9 wrote: View Post
Because Stocker, Tracy, Merrick and Decker are tragic or failed/weak characters they could have cast a female commander (and women in general) in a bad light, or that's how it might have been perceived.
Stocker I think is a total no go, but those other characters would only be perceived badly because of all the other poor women characters that had been on the show. If you show you can have strong women then you can show weak ones with no problem. Unfortunately TOS was only interested in the latter. Seeing a female Merrick sandwiched between a number of Mata Hari and damsel tropes and compounded by the space hooker Kirk accepts as tribute in the very same episode would have been problematic. But no worse than the rest of the show.

I, for one, would have LOVED to see Matt Decker as a woman if play exactly the way it was as aired. Someone weary, disheveled, yet filled with rage. Insisting Spock walk over to the con to speak to Kirk. Having actual bloodlust. Beating the shit out of a younger man. Sacrificing herself heroically and having that sacrifice pay off. That would have been the female role to rule the 60's, boy. There actually would have been nothing like it for 10 more years.

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Old March 23 2015, 10:58 AM   #103
Maurice
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

14 months late.
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Old March 23 2015, 11:34 AM   #104
T'Girl
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

Mark 2000 wrote: View Post
I, for one, would have LOVED to see Matt Decker as a woman if play exactly the way it was as aired. Someone weary, disheveled, yet filled with rage.
But that role would have portrayed a (1960's) female character in a bad light in a way that a male character wouldn't have been. Male Decker was pushed past the breaking point, female Decker would have been perceived as a "weak little girl." Similar with Stocker, clueless solely because she's a woman.

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Old March 23 2015, 11:56 AM   #105
IrishNero
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Re: Should they have had a female Commodore in TOS?

We need to be careful to keep things in context with the times. Star Trek began nearly 50 years ago, and the roles of women in our society have drastically changed since it went on the air. My opinion is that, as progressive as GR was, his views of women still reflected the times in which he lived to a large extent. The women's uniforms on the show were primarily short skirts, which would be offensive to many today. It's an oversimplification to believe the world was simply full of sexists at that time. It's societal. Keep in mind that there are still places in this world today where women are not allowed to vote, or even drive a car.
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