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Deep Space Nine What We Left Behind, we will always have here.

View Poll Results: Bajorans - do you like them or not?
Bajorans are great, a very well developed race/culture, I enjoyed plots that focused on them 36 61.02%
Bajorans are dull/annoying, I hated plots that focused on them 9 15.25%
They are so-so, I have no strong feelings on the matter 14 23.73%
Voters: 59. You may not vote on this poll

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Old April 16 2010, 03:34 AM   #31
Withers
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Martyrs-terrorists who eventually drove the 'bullies' away?
Yeah, yeah, yeah...boring, boring, boring.

But I do agree with you about the Maquis in Voyager--they had a chance to create some real dramatic conflict with them being aboard Voyager--and they never did anything with it.
So... you're saying that Maquis were much better terrorists than the Bajorans? That there are more differences and painful history to explore between the Maquis and the Starfleet than between the Bajorans and the Cardassians, or what?

Help me understand... I really don't get it? The Maquis vs the Starfleet = opportunity for great dramatic conflict, Bajorans vs Cardassians = boring, boring, boring? How does that work?

It's not only the Bajorans vs the Cardassians but it has the added effect of having the Federation standing in between them. Voyager had the Federation versus itself essentially (based on the fact that Torres and Chakotay both attended the academy). If one had greater potential from the onset I think it was obviously DS9. Beyond that, if someone opines that Voyager pulled it off better...



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Old April 16 2010, 03:48 AM   #32
DevilEyes
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Nerys Ghemor wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
USA = The Federation? That's probably what it stood for in the TOS, but it doesn't really make sense. European Union = the Federation, in some aspects anyway, would make more sense.
Definitely agreed...a combination of the EU and the United Nations.

China = Vulcan? I don't see the connection?
I would've picked Japan, personally...although I can actually see where the China bit is coming from since it's a very, VERY tightly controlled society. Not necessarily in terms of Big Brother, but in terms of culture...which is why I ultimately settle on Japan rather than China.

TOS Klingon Empire clearly stood for the Soviet Union during the Cold War. But I don't see any similarities between Russians and Klingons as depicted in Star Trek.
In TOS I can see the Russian parallel. But in the later series, I think it's the Cardassians who most closely resemble the Russians on many levels.
I don't think that any of those comparisons really work in a literal way (Vulcans stand for this, Klingons for that, etc.) I've heard a bunch of contradictory interpretations, each major race or power in Trek has been 'recognized' as at least 6-7 different Earth nations. Most of the time it's all in the eye of the beholder. And in most cases the writers had several different real life inspirations, they combined different things, and it also changed not just from series to series but from episode to episode. I mean, "Duet" was actually inspired by Holocaust and Nazi war criminals (though, really, there are other genocides and other war criminals, in case anybody has forgotten), but to derive out of this the formula "Bajorans = Jews, Cardassians = Germans" for the entire show, would be like concluding that the Talaxians = the Japanese, because VOY "Jetrel" was just as obviously inspired by Hiroshima/Nagasaki.

And it's a good thing that the parallels don't work in such a literal way, because that would really cheapen the shows, if they were nothing but thinly veiled allusions to real world events. (Well, they were a few times in TOS - "A Private Little War", for instance, but rarely in the later shows.) If that were the case, I'd have to ask, what's the point? Why just not be brave and sincere about it and make an honest political show where you'll show your views on [insert a current or historical political situation]. What is really great about SF is that it can deal with universal human themes. War, oppression, slavery, genocide, terrorism, occupation, racism, have happened or are happening many times through history in many different settings all over the world, and in a fictional SF setting, you can use imaginary races to present those conflicts and situations in a universal way, unconstrained by historical accuracy, and the viewers can watch it without the baggage of their own prejudices. Or rather, they would interpret the events based on their own background and views, but it would be like litmus paper - each viewer brings their own interpretation, and each viewer can read into it something that is the closest to them.
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Old April 16 2010, 04:43 AM   #33
Zameaze
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Martyrs-terrorists who eventually drove the 'bullies' away?
Yeah, yeah, yeah...boring, boring, boring.
Help me understand... I really don't get it? The Maquis vs the Starfleet = opportunity for great dramatic conflict, Bajorans vs Cardassians = boring, boring, boring? How does that work?
The Maquis were not martyrs and The Voyager crew were not bullies, hence we have a good chance of interesting dramatic conflict.
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Old April 16 2010, 04:51 AM   #34
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

John200 wrote: View Post
Withers wrote: View Post
John200 wrote: View Post

Hey what species represents Canada?

I feel left out.

The Gorn. For evidence of my reasoning just look at photos of Celine Dion.
No she's just an experimental weapon we've lost control of.
But boy can she sing! Did you hear her at the Winter Olympics?
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Old April 16 2010, 05:17 AM   #35
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Admiral Shran wrote: View Post
Withers wrote: View Post
The Bajorans were varied. They weren't all "Honor, honor, honor," "Money, Money, Money," "Logic, Logic, Logic." Sure, they were spiritual, but that wasn't the only thing ever defined about them and wasn't what identified a Bajoran
This.

I voted Yay. The Bajorans are easily one of my favorite races in Trek, and an example of an alien race done correctly. They weren't just a parody or example of some aspect of real life humanity.
As usual I agree with Withers and Admiral Shran, and voted Yay.

The Bajorans are also one of my favourite Trek races and apart from the Cardassians I can't think of another Trek race that was fleshed out in such an realistic way. They weren't a parody, they weren't all the same, and yes, they weren't all likeable - but overall, their race and each individual was developed in a way that I often wish other Trek races had been.
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Old April 16 2010, 11:52 AM   #36
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post

Yeah, yeah, yeah...boring, boring, boring.
Help me understand... I really don't get it? The Maquis vs the Starfleet = opportunity for great dramatic conflict, Bajorans vs Cardassians = boring, boring, boring? How does that work?
The Maquis were not martyrs and The Voyager crew were not bullies, hence we have a good chance of interesting dramatic conflict.
First off, most of the Bajorans were not martyrs, since a martyr is someone who willingly suffers for their religion or principle, and most Bajorans didn't have a choice. As for the resistance, they were trying to drive away Cardassians by killing and blowing them up, and there is no evidence anywhere that they were trying to get themselves "martyred". If they were killing themselves or surrendering to the Cardassians to get tortured and killed so they would be closer to the Prophets or whatever, you might have a point about "martyrdom", but as far as we know, they were your classic guerrilla fighters/terrorists. And then there were other Bajorans who were collaborators, so definitely not martyrs.

As for "Cardassians" as a whole can't be "bullies" because "Cardassians" refers to an entire race/species. Only a racist would call an entire race "bullies".

And you are still not making any sense. You're saying that you can have a better chance at interesting dramatic conflict between two groups of people who have less differences and less of a reason of conflict to begin with?
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Old April 16 2010, 01:33 PM   #37
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Bajorans are definitely boring and inherently obnoxious, not to mention, eyesores due to their hideous noses, earrings, and clothing.

DS9 would have been much better if they were not part of the concept at all.

When they ditched Bajoran stories for the most part to focus on the Dominion instead (end of Season 2 and on) that is when DS9 became a great show on the whole: because Bajorans were dragging the show down and wrecking its potential prior to then.

Withers wrote: View Post
There's a term for this (literally); it's called dramatic conflict and it is what makes for good fiction when executed properly. I'm not sure how, exactly, that is anything but antithetical to the word 'boring.'
I am a huge advocate for dramatic conflict. In fact, since only TOS and DS9 have it, that is one of the main reasons I find the other Trek shows to be unwatchable.

However, the Bajoran/Cardassian conflict was executed very poorly.

~90% of the 'conflict' screen-time was devoted to having Bajorans whine incessantly about how they were oppressed during the occupation, to anyone and everyone under the sun (most often, non-Cardassians), and even the same people hearing it (Sisko etc.) and the very same people whining about the very same things (Kira etc.) umpteen times. That is not entertaining, that is simply unbearably annoying. That is why the Bajoran race fails at providing interesting dramatic conflict.


DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Please enlighten me - what makes good dramatic conflict? Two groups of people who have no problems in their past whatsoever? Two groups of people with very few problems that they will solve until the end of the episode? What exactly?
Good dramatic conflict: both parties have an interesting point of view and neither can be said definitely to be entirely right or wrong. I.e. The Sisko vs. Weyoun scene in Call to Arms where Sisko refuses to let more Dominion ships through the wormhole - an excellent example of perfect dramatic conflict. It even includes nuances like brinksmanship, with each party lying to each other in a polite way.

Another great example of dramatic conflict: Hippocratic Oath. Both O'Brien and Bashir have a valid point of view regarding their dispute, therefore the conflict is fascinating to observe.

What is not good dramatic conflict is a hideous-nosed person whining: "O, woe is me! Cardassians have oppressed me! Pity me! Listen to my whines about how many times and in what ways we have been oppressed! (even though you have already heard them all before, several dozen times in the past, from other perpetual whiners of my race)"

Last edited by Navaros; April 16 2010 at 01:57 PM.
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Old April 16 2010, 01:46 PM   #38
Zameaze
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post

Help me understand... I really don't get it? The Maquis vs the Starfleet = opportunity for great dramatic conflict, Bajorans vs Cardassians = boring, boring, boring? How does that work?
The Maquis were not martyrs and The Voyager crew were not bullies, hence we have a good chance of interesting dramatic conflict.
First off, most of the Bajorans were not martyrs, since a martyr is someone who willingly suffers for their religion or principle
Please stop telling me how to speak English--I know precisely what I'm saying. Get a good dictionary. Go beyond the first couple of entries and find the more common use of the word martyr.
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Old April 16 2010, 02:38 PM   #39
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post

The Maquis were not martyrs and The Voyager crew were not bullies, hence we have a good chance of interesting dramatic conflict.
First off, most of the Bajorans were not martyrs, since a martyr is someone who willingly suffers for their religion or principle
Please stop telling me how to speak English--I know precisely what I'm saying. Get a good dictionary. Go beyond the first couple of entries and find the more common use of the word martyr.
Why don't you enlighten me?

What you're talking about is a victim, and in any case you're wrong. If Bajorans were nothing but victims, you might have a point somewhere, but anyone who has a basic idea about the premise of DS9 knows that they were not JUST victims, which blows your argument apart. Kira certainly wasn't just a victim, or anyone else who fought in the resistance.
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Old April 16 2010, 03:10 PM   #40
John200
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Zameaze wrote: View Post
John200 wrote: View Post
Withers wrote: View Post


The Gorn. For evidence of my reasoning just look at photos of Celine Dion.
No she's just an experimental weapon we've lost control of.
But boy can she sing! Did you hear her at the Winter Olympics?
Only really watched the hockey part of it.
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Old April 16 2010, 04:49 PM   #41
Zameaze
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
First off, most of the Bajorans were not martyrs, since a martyr is someone who willingly suffers for their religion or principle
Please stop telling me how to speak English--I know precisely what I'm saying. Get a good dictionary. Go beyond the first couple of entries and find the more common use of the word martyr.
Why don't you enlighten me?
I don't see why you don't just use a dictionary yourself--there are many online.

In the dictionary you'll find--Martyr: One who makes a great show of suffering in order to arouse sympathy. In fact, this is its most common meaning in everyday use.

If you check the synonyms, you'll find that martyr is synonymous with victim.

This is silly. As I've asked, please stop trying to teach me English.
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Old April 16 2010, 05:08 PM   #42
Navaros
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Come to think of it, Kai Winn also provided exceptionally well-done dramatic conflict, despite being a Bajoran. A large reason for that is because she (probably the ony Bajoran in history who this can be said about) never whined to others about how she has been wronged.

But really they could have stripped away the Bajoran aspects of Winn and still had a similar character who was equally good if not better. Her having a Bajoran identity has absolutely nothing to do with why she is a great character.
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Old April 16 2010, 09:13 PM   #43
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Regarding the make-up, yes, I have a general problem with all alien make-up on Star Trek that is little more than one or a few prosthetics pasted on someone, but I find Cardassians and Bajorans to be the worst offenders. It's hard to explain, but somehow, even though the Romulans (at least on the original series) and Vulcans had little more to distinguish them from humans than pointy ears and arched eyebrows, I've always found them infinitely more plausible than Bajorans as aliens.

I think a big part of the reason is because every actor who ever played a Vulcan or Romulan from Leonard Nimoy and Mark Lenard onwards maintained this tradition of selling their otherworldliness beautifully with such distinctive ways of speaking and body language that helped enhance how convincing their alien appearances were.

Bajorans and Caradassians, on the other hand, were never played well enough for me to suspend my disbelief and accept them as more than people with stupid-looking stuff on their noses and or foreheads. Bajorans just came across humans who were whiny or preachy (and had junk on their nose), while Cardassians just seemed like humans who were really arrogant (and had grey skin, a bunch of scales, and some goofy-looking shape on their forehead).

The Bajoran make-up is especially ludicrous to me...an alien species that looks exactly identical to humans except some ugly ridges on their noses? Completely implausible from an evolutionary standpoint. At least with their massive forehead make-up changing everything from foreheads, to eyebrows, to noses along with prosthetic teeth, Klingons and Ferengi look a lot more like a different species at least from the neck up, with skulls that clearly evolved differently from those of humans.

Honestly the only aliens on Star Trek who I thought truly looked completely alien (the way I wish most of them would have) were the one disguised as a kid in "Future Imperfect", the mutes that Lxwaxanna Troi exposed as terrorists (I forget the episode name), Tosk, and oddly enough, The Salt Vampire from "The Man Trap".

I liked the designs of a lot of Star Trek aliens. I love the look of the the Jemhadar and the Vorta (except for their weirdly-shaped hair), but it's hard for me to not see most alien races on Star Trek as obviously just people in make-up. I think Roger Ebert put it best in his negative review of "Nemesis" when he said he was sick of Star Trek partially because he was sick of seeing aliens that just look like "people with funny foreheads". The one category I think Star Wars trumps Star Trek in is in the quality of their alien designs. The Borg are great because they're simply supposed to be half man/half machine. But as far as I'm concerned these other alien races that are supposed to be a different species than human just because they have some small ridges or scales just don't work with that make-up.
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Old April 16 2010, 09:29 PM   #44
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

Zameaze wrote: View Post
DevilEyes wrote: View Post
Zameaze wrote: View Post

Please stop telling me how to speak English--I know precisely what I'm saying. Get a good dictionary. Go beyond the first couple of entries and find the more common use of the word martyr.
Why don't you enlighten me?
I don't see why you don't just use a dictionary yourself--there are many online.

In the dictionary you'll find--Martyr: One who makes a great show of suffering in order to arouse sympathy. In fact, this is its most common meaning in everyday use.

If you check the synonyms, you'll find that martyr is synonymous with victim.

This is silly. As I've asked, please stop trying to teach me English.
Wel, it's not my fault if you're not using the language well. Because your definition above doesn't fit any Bajorans I can think of, and certainly not for the race in general, which is why it never occurred to me that you would be using it in that sense. If you can name a few it fits, please tell who. I need names and quotes. Who made "a great show of suffering to arouse sympathy"? And whose sympathy?

Oh, and I'd also love to know: you said that "The Maquis are not martyrs" - so, they were not making a great show of suffering to arouse sympathy? But the Bajorans were? Because, let's see... the Maquis had it so bad, compared to the Bajorans who just had this nice little Occupation that was a walk in the park? Please name all the ways that the Maquis suffered a lot more than the Bajorans? What about B'Elanna, was she a "martyr"? Poor girl, some kids said something about her forehead when she was little, and it scarred her for life, so she's constantly pissed about the fact that, oh horror, she is half-Klingon! Unlike Kira, who has absolutely no reason to be angry at anyone, I mean when has anything bad happened to her? She's so obviously a crybaby while B'Elanna has TRULY suffered.

In fact, by your logic, wouldn't the Maquis and the Starfleet much better fit your labels of martyrs and bullies, which you said they were not? Starfleet gave colonists' land to the Cardassians despite their wishes and fought against the Maquis - bullies (sorry, but what Cardassians did to Bajor is way too serious to use school ground terms like "bullies" for), the Maquis make a great show of suffering because they had to move from their lands (or, in some cases, for other reasons... say, because they are half-Klingon).
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Last edited by DevilEyes; April 16 2010 at 09:44 PM.
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Old April 16 2010, 09:57 PM   #45
Navaros
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Re: Bajorans - yay or nay

^

Pretty much every single Bajoran who has ever appeared on the show, other than Winn, has attempted to "make a great show of suffering in order to arouse sympathy."

Only I'd object to the word 'great', because their attempt to gain sympathy by whining is pathetic and annoying rather than great.

Nonetheless, the definition is spot-on, because they were certainly attempting to "make a great show of suffering in order to arouse sympathy," and that is how the writers wanted them to be perceived.
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