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General Trek Discussion Trek TV and cinema subjects not related to any specific series or movie.

View Poll Results: Which one of these best demonstrates the use of a MacGuffin in Trek?
The Genesis Device 2 6.45%
Red Matter 14 45.16%
Near Nudity and Sex 1 3.23%
Bajoran Orbs 1 3.23%
V'Ger 0 0%
Morphogenic Matrix 0 0%
Q 1 3.23%
Section 31 0 0%
Whales 1 3.23%
Quadrotriticale 10 32.26%
Spock's Brain ("Brain and Brain!") 0 0%
Dilithium Crystals 0 0%
The Cloaking Device 0 0%
Zenite 1 3.23%
Spock's Katra 0 0%
Voters: 31. You may not vote on this poll

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Old July 20 2014, 04:06 PM   #1
austen_pierce
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Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

After collecting ideas on MacGuffins in Trek, it's time to vote on which ones we feel to be the most representative of the term by definition.

From UrbanDictionary.com:
MacGuffin:
In film, a plot device that has no specific meaning or purpose other than to advance the story; any situation that motivates the action of a film either artificially or substantively.

So which is the most meaningless outside of the story and motivational factors?
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Old July 20 2014, 04:07 PM   #2
Elias Vaughn
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

I'm pretty sure the incredible revelation in the climax of The Chase was never even mentioned again.
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Old July 20 2014, 04:54 PM   #3
JJohnson
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

The red matter looked like something from a lava lamp. It was such a cop-out.
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Old July 20 2014, 05:27 PM   #4
Melakon
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

I tend to interpret a MacGuffin based on the explanation Hitchcock gave in his interviews with Truffaut, and quadrotriticale fits better for me than some of the other options.
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Last edited by Melakon; July 20 2014 at 05:28 PM. Reason: left out an important R in quadrotriticale
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Old July 20 2014, 06:26 PM   #5
Harvey
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

Melakon wrote: View Post
I tend to interpret a MacGuffin based on the explanation Hitchcock gave in his interviews with Truffaut, and quadrotriticale fits better for me than some of the other options.
This. At first glance, the other things on this list (including red matter), aren't MacGuffins.

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Old July 20 2014, 09:29 PM   #6
Mr. Laser Beam
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

I'd definitely consider Red Matter as a macguffin. Absolutely no attempt is made to explain exactly what this stuff IS, how it works, or, hell, why it's red. Only that it makes black holes.
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Old July 20 2014, 09:47 PM   #7
CorporalCaptain
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

I went with quadrotriticale.

From a "literary" standpoint, quadrotriticale absolutely is a MacGuffin. While some of the other choices absolutely are MacGuffins too (some aren't!), "Tribbles" is certainly the most famous episode represented by the choices that absolutely are MacGuffins, which is how I'm choosing which radio button to select.
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Old July 20 2014, 10:09 PM   #8
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

MacGuffin?

I thought you said McMuffin, and I was halfway out the door headed to McDonald's before it hit me.

I chose "radio button."
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Old July 20 2014, 10:21 PM   #9
Armored Saint
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

You can't consider Spock's brain and katra as MacGuffin, on all Spock's appearance, there's only two where's his body and his mind aren't together: Spock's Brain and STIII. So, Spock's mind's is a primordial element in all TOS episodes and movies, plus Unification and nuTrek.

If I understand well the definition, the ion pod in Court Martial's a MacGuffin (as the job of Record Officer).
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Old July 21 2014, 04:55 AM   #10
scotpens
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

Zenite in "The Cloud Minders" and ryetalin (sp?) in "Requiem for Methuselah" are definitely MacGuffins. They're valuable, urgently needed substances invented specifically for their respective episodes. You could swap them for Unobtainium and Baloneyium and it would make no difference in the stories.
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Old July 21 2014, 05:02 AM   #11
Melakon
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

The MacGuffin in Woody Allen's What's Up Tiger Lily? is the recipe for delicious egg salad.
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Old July 21 2014, 05:05 AM   #12
scotpens
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

Melakon wrote: View Post
The MacGuffin in Woody Allen's What's Up Tiger Lily? is the recipe for delicious egg salad.
A salad so delicious you could plotz!

Of course, in that case, it's more a parody of a MacGuffin.
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Old July 21 2014, 05:06 AM   #13
CorporalCaptain
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

scotpens wrote: View Post
Zenite in "The Cloud Minders" and ryetalin (sp?) in "Requiem for Methuselah" are definitely MacGuffins. They're valuable, urgently needed substances invented specifically for their respective episodes. You could swap them for Unobtainium and Baloneyium and it would make no difference in the stories.
Yep. Ryetalyn should have been on the list, too.
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Old July 21 2014, 09:20 AM   #14
Captain Rob
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

I would vote for nuKhan's blood and the magic tribble.
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Old July 21 2014, 10:46 AM   #15
Maurice
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Re: Most Gratuitous Trek MacGuffin!

What some are missing is that the MacGuffin has to be important to the characters and not the audience. The ion pod was not important to the characters, they didn't care about the pod; they cared what Kirk did, hence the pod's not a MacGuffin. Spock's katra would be a MacGuffin if it were only the characters who were concerned about it, but the audience is invested in Spock, ergo not a MacGuffin. Rytalin, Zenite, the Genesis Torpedo, all MacGuffins, because they motivate the characters but we could give a rat's arse.
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