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

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Old February 25 2014, 10:38 AM   #1
Khan 2.0
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why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Seed

the end of STID got me thinking back to Space Seed. Why didn't kirk notify Starfleet and get khan and co put back in storage ( in the botany bay and then stick it in some secure area 51 type place)instead of plopping him on Ceti Alpha V to run riot

Last edited by Khan 2.0; February 25 2014 at 03:22 PM.
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Old February 25 2014, 10:41 AM   #2
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

"They have my ship, discarding their own worthless vessel."
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Old February 25 2014, 01:56 PM   #3
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Excellent, excellent point, Botany Bay.

Besides, Kirk is never one to waste potential, one just needs to find the right place to apply it. In the DEXTER TV series and the 1994 movie THE SHADOW with Alec Baldwin, "evil" and predatory characters are set up in situations where their behavior will do some good. Trek's own "The Enemy Within" followed the same theme.
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Old February 25 2014, 02:35 PM   #4
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Botany Bay wrote: View Post
"They have my ship, discarding their own worthless vessel."
Kirk couldn't turn around and go get it? It's not like they went far and the life support canisters were still functioning. Was Kirk really able to keep 70 some-odd "supermen" at bay on the Enterprise until they got to Ceti Alpha? Sure, McCoy could probably knock them out, or they could keep pumping anesthesia gas into a room or two with all of them in there, but it would just be easier to shove them back into their little coffins and transport them to the planet in the Botany Bay. This was implied in TWOK anyway.
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Old February 25 2014, 02:47 PM   #5
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Sit right back and you'll hear a tale, a tale of a fateful trip that started from this orbiting port aboard this tiny ship...

Most likely, Kirk thought Khan and his crew were simply too dangerous to bring back, Someone is going to open those canisters again, and Khan and company will soon be trouble again. The last JJ movie is a likely outcome. Folks would try to use Khan's genius only to be used by him.
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Old February 25 2014, 04:03 PM   #6
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Plus, those chambers might have been "single use". I mean, after more than two centuries, I wouldn't trust the equipment enough to refreeze them. Khan's chamber started to "crap out" during revival, forcing Kirk to smash the glass.

Yeah, the tubes in STiD were apparently more durable, but we're discussing TOS here.

Sincerely,

Bill
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Old February 25 2014, 04:18 PM   #7
Lance
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Khan 2.0 wrote: View Post
the end of STID got me thinking back to Space Seed. Why didn't kirk notify Starfleet and get khan and co put back in storage ( in the botany bay and then stick it in some secure area 51 type place)instead of plopping him on Ceti Alpha V to run riot
Romanticism.

It's oft forgotten that, besides all that steal-the-Enterprise-and-try-to-kill-anyone-who-resists stuff, the Khan depicted in 'Space Seed' was a far more romantic figure than the one in TWOK, arguably. In many ways he was a more admirable figure than the TWOK Khan, too.

The idea of Khan the intellectual, on some level, appealed to Kirk. The Khan who waxed lyrical about Dante and spoke passionately about having to do bad things to achieve noble aims. On some level, Kirk in that episode was as intrigued by Khan as Marla McGivers was.

So when deciding Khan's fate, he favored giving Khan the chance to build the "paradise" he spoke so much of.

It isn't so much that Khan is "evil" and Kirk just wants some way to get rid of him, but more that Ceti Alpha V allows Kirk to solve two problems at once: to get shot of Khan and his superhuman followers, while still pampering Khan's ego enough that Khan is happy to 'accept' his fate without any counter-thought of fighting back (and maybe succeeding this time). Khan doesn't just sit there and fume, he graciously accepts Kirk's deliberations.

It's an upbeat note on which to end 'Space Seed', which TWOK then kind of traded on tearing to pieces.
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Old February 25 2014, 07:27 PM   #8
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

I would think enough of the hibernation alcove might not function correctly if restarted not to make it a viable solution. They would Have to tow that ship back because they could not leave it for anyone else to find. Was the better solution to bring them to a high security facility?
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Old February 25 2014, 11:03 PM   #9
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Because that might as well be a death sentence. The ship's power would eventually fail, and there's no guarantee anyone would find them (and would you want them to?). Kirk's decision was logical. Give them a new start on some remote backwater and let them see what they can do. Also, let's not forget it was Khan's choice, not a sentence.
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Old February 26 2014, 12:51 AM   #10
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

The chambers were already failing when they found the ship...many had already failed; they were defunct, 200ish-year-old technology; and it may have required special medical and/or engineering expertise to get the people refrozen safely.
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Old February 26 2014, 02:46 AM   #11
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Maurice wrote: View Post
Because that might as well be a death sentence. The ship's power would eventually fail, and there's no guarantee anyone would find them (and would you want them to?). Kirk's decision was logical. Give them a new start on some remote backwater and let them see what they can do. Also, let's not forget it was Khan's choice, not a sentence.
Absolutely. TWOK ret cons it as having been "exile", something which was apparently forced upon Khan by Captain Kirk... but our only account of that in the movie is Khan's own, and he's had decades of bitterly twisting the facts inside his own head. Kirk became an outlet for Khan's anger over his little colony going wrong, Marla's death, everything that Khan the supposed superhuman was utterly helpless to prevent. It's misappropriated blame on Khan's part, really.

In reality, the decision made to put them on Ceti Alpha V in "Space Seed" was presented as being much more magnanimous and logical than that. And as you say, Khan in the episode sees it more as an opportunity for a new life, not as an exile being imposed upon him.
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Old February 26 2014, 10:27 PM   #12
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Lance wrote: View Post
Khan 2.0 wrote: View Post
the end of STID got me thinking back to Space Seed. Why didn't kirk notify Starfleet and get khan and co put back in storage ( in the botany bay and then stick it in some secure area 51 type place)instead of plopping him on Ceti Alpha V to run riot
Romanticism.

It's oft forgotten that, besides all that steal-the-Enterprise-and-try-to-kill-anyone-who-resists stuff, the Khan depicted in 'Space Seed' was a far more romantic figure than the one in TWOK, arguably. In many ways he was a more admirable figure than the TWOK Khan, too.

The idea of Khan the intellectual, on some level, appealed to Kirk. The Khan who waxed lyrical about Dante and spoke passionately about having to do bad things to achieve noble aims. On some level, Kirk in that episode was as intrigued by Khan as Marla McGivers was.

So when deciding Khan's fate, he favored giving Khan the chance to build the "paradise" he spoke so much of.

It isn't so much that Khan is "evil" and Kirk just wants some way to get rid of him, but more that Ceti Alpha V allows Kirk to solve two problems at once: to get shot of Khan and his superhuman followers, while still pampering Khan's ego enough that Khan is happy to 'accept' his fate without any counter-thought of fighting back (and maybe succeeding this time). Khan doesn't just sit there and fume, he graciously accepts Kirk's deliberations.

It's an upbeat note on which to end 'Space Seed', which TWOK then kind of traded on tearing to pieces.
Did he quote Dante? I remember he alluded to Milton at the end. In TWOK he quotes Melville.

I like your analysis. I wouldn't be so hard on TWOK, though. It made sense that Khan would be changed; his wife (McGivers) had been killed, and he was at least half-mad by TWOK.
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Old March 2 2014, 10:38 PM   #13
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Had the planet stayed a paradise, who knows? They might have been added to the Federation had no disaster happened.
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Old March 2 2014, 10:43 PM   #14
Alidar Jarok
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Space Seed ends on an optimistic note where they have a chance to grow and establish their own civilization. There's no reason to think it would result in The Wrath of Khan. Given the facts as Kirk knew them, the whole situation made sense.
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Old March 2 2014, 10:53 PM   #15
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Re: why didnt Kirk put khan back in the freezer at the end of Space Se

Maurice wrote: View Post
Because that might as well be a death sentence. The ship's power would eventually fail, and there's no guarantee anyone would find them (and would you want them to?). Kirk's decision was logical. Give them a new start on some remote backwater and let them see what they can do. Also, let's not forget it was Khan's choice, not a sentence.
Exactly. Putting them back "in the freezer" would have been ruthless and inhumane under the circumstances. Kirk had no reason to suspect that this act of mercy would come back to bite him decades later.
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