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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies XI+

Star Trek Movies XI+ Discuss J.J. Abrams' rebooted Star Trek here.

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Old August 2 2014, 01:44 AM   #76
Santa Kang
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Re: New writers speak

Franklin wrote: View Post
Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Dennis wrote: View Post

Mebbe, but there's not a thing Indian about him except his name.
I sometimes wonder if "Khan" was just a title he gave himself.
That's always been my take. Khan is either title going back to the Mongols, or a common surname among Muslims in south Asia. Neither the name nor the title have anything to do with Sikhs. Singh is a very common Sikh surname.

I think this has been said on here before, but the writer of "Space Seed" was probably just going for something that sounded exotic and didn't give a rat's ass if the name was authentic or even made ethnic sense. He certainly didn't think the name would be analyzed nearly fifty years later.
Khan's evolution is interesting. He starts off as a straight up criminal named Harald Ericsson Then becomes a Viking "Superman" with the names Ragnar Thorwald/John Ericssen. For some reason they change him into an Indian by the final draft. Some speculate it was Montalban's casting that prompted the change. Though why he couldn't have become a Hispanic character escapes me. The name "Khan Noonien Singh" seems to be Roddenberry's idea. As way to get on contact with an old service buddy from WWII, called Kim Noonien Wang or Singh. IIRC Roddenberry served in the South Pacific, so his buddy could have been native to that region.
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Old August 2 2014, 02:33 AM   #77
Franklin
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Re: New writers speak

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
Franklin wrote: View Post
Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
I sometimes wonder if "Khan" was just a title he gave himself.
That's always been my take. Khan is either title going back to the Mongols, or a common surname among Muslims in south Asia. Neither the name nor the title have anything to do with Sikhs. Singh is a very common Sikh surname.

I think this has been said on here before, but the writer of "Space Seed" was probably just going for something that sounded exotic and didn't give a rat's ass if the name was authentic or even made ethnic sense. He certainly didn't think the name would be analyzed nearly fifty years later.
Khan's evolution is interesting. He starts off as a straight up criminal named Harald Ericsson Then becomes a Viking "Superman" with the names Ragnar Thorwald/John Ericssen. For some reason they change him into an Indian by the final draft. Some speculate it was Montalban's casting that prompted the change. Though why he couldn't have become a Hispanic character escapes me. The name "Khan Noonien Singh" seems to be Roddenberry's idea. As way to get on contact with an old service buddy from WWII, called Kim Noonien Wang or Singh. IIRC Roddenberry served in the South Pacific, so his buddy could have been native to that region.
Cool info.

As Johnny Carson used to say, "I did not know that."

Edited to add: Given that Montalban had played Native American characters on westerns, you don't suppose when they cast Montalban and someone suggested changing his character to an Indian that the person really meant -- ? Nah.
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Old August 2 2014, 07:04 AM   #78
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Re: New writers speak

Dennis wrote: View Post
BigJake wrote: View Post
Dennis wrote: View Post
'Cause, you know, there were Indians. One was played by Richardo Montalban.
It's a great day when a white guy can be cast as an Indian guy previously played by a Mexican guy.
Was Khan Indian? Because McGivers said he might be?
This was a HUGE fight (and I mean that) over ID. Abrams was even called racist and Cumberbatch's casting was called "whitewashing" because of the original episode showing Montalban as Indian.

Personally, I could not believe it. The original dialog was something about him possibly being a Sikh, as they were "fierce warriors." It was a throwaway line, especially when Khan is revealed as a genetically engineered superman. To me, the "genetically engineered" part should be more important, regardless of what he claims to be.

No offense is meant in this post to any Indians, or other ethnic groups. My apologies if I got any details wrong.
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Old August 2 2014, 09:36 AM   #79
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Re: New writers speak

Franklin wrote: View Post

I think this has been said on here before, but the writer of "Space Seed" was probably just going for something that sounded exotic and didn't give a rat's ass if the name was authentic or even made ethnic sense. He certainly didn't think the name would be analyzed nearly fifty years later.
I think there is little doubt what the original intent was. His name is a deliberate corruption of Noonian Soong Hernandez, Noonian Soong's illegitimate half-Klingon nephew augment who travelled back in time to India and declared himself a Khan to finish Arik's job without Federation interference.
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