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

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Old March 26 2013, 12:49 AM   #1
MarsWeeps
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Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

So, why didn't any of the Exeter's crew try beaming down to the planet after they were infected and people started dying?

The ship's medical officer had enough time to record a warning, telling them to beam down:

SPOCK: I have their surgeon's log, Captain. Their last log entry, Captain, on screen.
(A man in a blue shirt is struggling to try and sit up in the Captains chair and dictate the log.)
DOCTOR [on viewscreen]: If you've come aboard this ship, you're dead men. Don't go back to your own ship. You have one chance. Get down there. Get down there fast.

Did the disease really crystalize everyone so quickly that it prevented any of Exeter's crew from beaming down?
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Old March 26 2013, 01:46 AM   #2
Pavonis
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

It could be that they didn't figure out the disease's relationship to the atmosphere until it was too late to use it. They may have tried to prevent contamination of Omega IV at first, fearing they had caught the disease elsewhere and brought it to the planet with them.
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Old March 26 2013, 01:57 AM   #3
blssdwlf
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

I think the disease happened so fast that the Exeter doctor's log was right when he realized the problem. That doctor might've been the last person alive.
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Old March 26 2013, 02:12 AM   #4
feek61
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

So fast I guess that they couldn't get a distress call out? Not buying it, lol.
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Old March 26 2013, 03:40 AM   #5
blssdwlf
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Since they didn't send a distress call out it would appear that it was that fast, lol.
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Old March 26 2013, 10:16 AM   #6
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

MarsWeeps wrote: View Post
So, why didn't any of the Exeter's crew try beaming down to the planet after they were infected and people started dying?
Quarantining an outbreak seems sensible. No way of knowing who on the ship might be a carrier.
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Old March 26 2013, 11:18 AM   #7
Timo
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Abandoning ship would be remarkably atypical for a starship crew. In comparable situations, Kirk's crew never budged: evacuation would only happen as per the Captain's explicit orders. The two times we witnessed a starship being evacuated, "The Doomsday Machine" and "This Side of Paradise", it happened with astonishing discipline. In the first, all but one of the crew beamed down to what they probably knew was their death, within a short time and without a hint of panic. In the second, the crew had supposedly lost its respect for authority, and still filed down neatly and efficiently.

Sending a distress call at the first sign of trouble is another thing starships apparently never do. For all we know, it's a hopeless endeavor anyway: starships might operate outside communications range for most of the time, and the only way to report back to base would be to launch a recorder marker. No doubt the Exeter crew would have done that eventually, but we have seen how much it takes time to prepare one.

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Old March 26 2013, 12:59 PM   #8
Marsden
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Plus, who's going to respond? A Starship is the top of the line, best ship in the Federation, is a freighter going to rescue them?


As far as anything else with this episode, it's problematic. I do not pretend it's good. Sorry if you like this one, I don't and it's on my 10 I don't think about too much list.


Constellation had it's disaster beacon on, not necessarily a distress signal but it could be considered one.

The Intrepid didn't send a distress signal, but Starbase 6 lost contact and asked Enterprise to check it out.

Starfleet lost contact with Defiant and sent Enterprise to check it out.
(I'm starting to buy that theory they didn't like Kirk and gave him all of the bad jobs, like Dirty Harry.)

Last edited by Marsden; March 26 2013 at 01:10 PM.
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Old March 26 2013, 01:19 PM   #9
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Timo wrote: View Post
Abandoning ship would be remarkably atypical for a starship crew. In comparable situations, Kirk's crew never budged: evacuation would only happen as per the Captain's explicit orders. The two times we witnessed a starship being evacuated, "The Doomsday Machine" and "This Side of Paradise", it happened with astonishing discipline. In the first, all but one of the crew beamed down to what they probably knew was their death, within a short time and without a hint of panic. In the second, the crew had supposedly lost its respect for authority, and still filed down neatly and efficiently.

Sending a distress call at the first sign of trouble is another thing starships apparently never do. For all we know, it's a hopeless endeavor anyway: starships might operate outside communications range for most of the time, and the only way to report back to base would be to launch a recorder marker. No doubt the Exeter crew would have done that eventually, but we have seen how much it takes time to prepare one.

Timo Saloniemi
On the other hand, it's hard for me to imagine Captain Smith thinking: "Yes, we've stuck an iceberg and we're going down by the head. But why even bother sending out an S.O.S. After all, we're just so darned far from our base. Also, we're the fastest ship out here--there's probably not an Olympic-class vessel near us, and who would come to our aid--a freighter? It's clearly just not worth the effort to fire up the Marconi."
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Old March 26 2013, 02:16 PM   #10
Robert Comsol
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Marsden wrote: View Post
The Intrepid didn't send a distress signal, but Starbase 6 lost contact and asked Enterprise to check it out.
...within several hours.

Marsden wrote: View Post
Starfleet lost contact with Defiant and sent Enterprise to check it out.
...after three weeks.

But still after 6 months nobody cared what had happened to the Exeter.
Could it be she had been on a top secret mission that would have taken that long or longer?

Bob
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Old March 26 2013, 02:28 PM   #11
Marsden
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

Robert Comsol wrote: View Post
But still after 6 months nobody cared what had happened to the Exeter.
Could it be she had been on a top secret mission that would have taken that long or longer?

Bob
Which reinforces my Omega Glory is not very good comment, IMO of course. I'm not trying to put meaning into your post you did not intend. Just that circumstances are not really too well thought out. They just happened to bumble along and find a Starship. I think Starfleet would like to know where their main assets are.
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Old March 26 2013, 03:26 PM   #12
Timo
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

On the other hand, it's hard for me to imagine Captain Smith thinking:
Try Captain Shackleton for size.

Odds are, the Exeter would not be in the North Atlantic, but in the deep Antarctic. The wireless would be hard pressed to reach anything at all even in ideal circumstances, and help would arrive within half a year at the earliest if all went well. And unless that help indeed was another polar exploration vessel, she would not cout as "help" but rather as "collateral".

This could well be the norm for starships, with the Intrepid being an extremely rare exception for actually being in realtime contact with home base. Which of Kirk's own adventures featured such contact? "The Alternative Factor" was about the only one where a big deal was not made of the slowness of clearing things with Starfleet Command...

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Old March 26 2013, 05:41 PM   #13
TREK_GOD_1
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
On the other hand, it's hard for me to imagine Captain Smith thinking: "Yes, we've stuck an iceberg and we're going down by the head. But why even bother sending out an S.O.S. After all, we're just so darned far from our base. Also, we're the fastest ship out here--there's probably not an Olympic-class vessel near us, and who would come to our aid--a freighter? It's clearly just not worth the effort to fire up the Marconi."
That's why the time issue is the most plausible in explaining the final hours of Exeter's crew; the disease was killing the crew so fast, Dr. Carter (and staff) were overwhelmed, so the next action taken was call Tracey, then continue to try everything "on the shelf" to combat the disease.

By the time Carter realized it was a lost cause, he likely felt his first duty was to leave the recorded warning. Moreover, as CMO, he may not have the clearance or knowledge to launch a warning device, or had the time to do so.
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Old March 26 2013, 05:52 PM   #14
Marsden
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

^ I agree, the CMO would be most concerned with the health of those who follow. Maybe the logic was don't send a message because any rescuers would be further casualties. Also, Tracey may have wanted to keep his discovery secret and could have delayed sending until it was too late. Vague comments about not reporting until we have something definite, which resulted in no message sent.

(also, it's a bad episode)

So, what did happen to Capt. Tracey? Did he get greedy and was to exploit the youth properties of the planet or did he go nutty realizing his entire crew was dead? That could have a negative impact on your mental state. Maybe a combination of both.

I also wonder what they did with Exeter, it wasn't damaged. Did anyone ever say?
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Old March 26 2013, 06:21 PM   #15
Pavonis
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Re: Why didn't any of the Exeter's crew beam down to the planet?

No, the fate of the Exeter was not mentioned. TOS didn't do follow-up episodes, and rarely mentioned events from previous episodes.
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