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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies I-X

Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old October 9 2014, 05:20 PM   #1
Khan 2.0
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What else could they have done for Trek V?

We know the story - 1987/88 and it was time to start on Star Trek V. The Genesis trilogy had been completed so it had to be an all new adventure.. Shatner was locked to direct (due to the favoured nation clause with Nimoy) but the studio was uncertain about his Spocks crazy brother hijacks the Enterprise and trys to find God pitch (basically The Way to Eden with a 30m budget)...GR didnt like it. Bennett certainly wasnt keen, nor was Meyer who turned down the offer to write. (In the end Bennett convinced Shatner to alter the story so it wasnt the real god/devil)

In hindsight I suppose Paramount/Bennett shouldve said to Shatner ok you can direct the movie but its not going to be the search for God. So what could it have been? Surely it was time to bring in the Romulans? (as was intended for III but then got switched to klingons) Couldve still had the Yosemite vacation scenes at the start but when they go up to the ship the Admiral gives them a romulan mission... the Enterprise sent to investigate some disturbance near the Neutral Zone and uncovers a Romulan plot to destroy the federation leading to a Balence of Terror-esque game of cat and mouse between the enterprise and a romulan bird of prey (building on the Ent/Reliant battle scenes that proved so popular in TWOK) Perhaps some of Shatners God plot couldve even been integrated – e.g. The Romulans are trying to get hold of some doomsday like superweapon located on a fabled planet of a long dead civilization (shades of TNGs Contagion?) culminating in the Indiana Jones style end (set somewhere like the end of TFF) uncovering something godlike (as in TFF/engineers in Prometheus) - that kills the romulans and its then up to Kirk to stop the ‘god’ from destroying them.

Something that wouldve got back to the more serious action territory of II/III after the comedy tone of IV and showcased the Romulans for the first time in the movies (the klingons had their shot in III and were going to get another in VI)

Last edited by Khan 2.0; October 9 2014 at 10:57 PM.
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Old October 9 2014, 06:21 PM   #2
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

they could have done pretty much whatever they wanted. and thats what we got. if you want to keep the story and themes going i would skip V all together, make the praxis explosion in VI caused by the klingons trying to create their own genesis device, and go about with the story basically the same.
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Old October 9 2014, 06:45 PM   #3
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Back at the time between STIV and news of STV, I kind of thought STV would be a story built around what the Klingon ambassador said at the beginning of TVH: "There shall be no peace as long as Kirk lives." That was a very juicy line and big theatrical moment to just let it go. I thought it had foreshadowing of the next movie written all over it.

As it is, I never thought the story in STV was particularly bad and shouldn't have gone to the big screen. In better hands, or with more polishing and rewrites, it could've been an excellent character study. As it was, it was done so ham-fisted and with such ridiculous moments and ideas (why in the world did Cybok have to be Spock's brother for the story to work?) that over the years, some have rationalized it as Kirk actually dreaming all of it -- to which I say, his dream, our nightmare.
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Old October 9 2014, 07:36 PM   #4
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Back at the time between STIV and news of STV, I kind of thought STV would be a story built around what the Klingon ambassador said at the beginning of TVH: "There shall be no peace as long as Kirk lives." That was a very juicy line and big theatrical moment to just let it go. I thought it had foreshadowing of the next movie written all over it.
Yes indeed, a Klingon kirkhunt action movie would've been interesting so long as it had some Romulans too (although I think DC did something like that in their second series 1988 onwards not that it would've mattered to the next movie)

Last edited by Khan 2.0; October 9 2014 at 10:58 PM.
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Old October 9 2014, 08:50 PM   #5
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Yup, frankly, if they had gone full bore into a Klingon story that was a lead in to TUC, then I bet they could've nabbed one more additional film to have it be a 2nd trilogy, that puts the prospect of peace on the table by the end. Basically, take elements of TUC and spread it out over 3 films, one of which could have Kirk commanding the captured BOP in enemy territory

I see it could play out like this. St:5 Kirk gets into Klingon trouble aboard the new ENT-A, & ends up in the Klingon prison camp. St:6 They have to go into enemy territory using the captured BOP to get him back. ST:7 They have to put down the attempt to assassinate the Federation president. You have to admit, Kirk getting imprisoned by Klingons would make a hell of a cliffhanger

Apart from a big Klingon story arc like that, the only other thing I could think of is to use introducing Sybok in a more serious treatment. Basically, take the general plot of TNG's Unification, & make Sybok the revolutionary who is attempting Romulan peace/reunification. They all think he's defecting or insane, but ultimately he's just passionate, which is what makes him perfect for the task. I see that story being a bit grander on the big screen than it was in the TNG 2-parter anyhow.
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Old October 9 2014, 09:32 PM   #6
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Y'know...if they'd gone the pre-Unification route and written it particularly well, and had it end with Sybok's capture?/execution?/other failure? it might have lent a bit more poignancy to Spock's decision to join the movement in Unification, instead of having it be interesting but a bit out of the blue.
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Old October 9 2014, 09:47 PM   #7
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

I would have preferred that they simply stopped making TOS films after TVH. There really was no more story to tell with that cast. TNG was on the air and they should have focused on that.
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Old October 9 2014, 10:35 PM   #8
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

What I find so fascinating about THE FINAL FRONTIER is that it completely ignored the aging of the cast. This movie wants absolutely nothing to do with that and is just going to keep doing Business as Usual, like they're just going to live forever and keep cranking these things out. This is especially evidenced with Kirk's remarks regarding the fate of Kord, "When they put me out to pasture, I hope I fare better than Kord." You HAVE been put out to pasture, sir ... but the grazing isn't good. And no matter what the story was about, this mindset would've only taken the edge off of it, no matter how well written it was. This movie, more than any other, should've embraced the March of Time. Maybe a youthful crew on a brand new ship finds itself in trouble some way and they need the Old School Crew to show them "How It's Done."

The original actors still being ambulatory was a thin excuse to justify another adventure for them. It was time to move on. But at the time, being so close to the 25th Anniversary, or whenever it was, I can understand the sentimentality on display, here. Who cares that Mister Spock's looking like the walking corpse of Moe from the Three Stooges. That Bones seems so frail. That Kirk, Scotty & Uhura have ballooned out. The paying customers weren't quite ready to let them go, yet. So, let them live in the past a little longer. Shatner certainly wasn't going to present himself as anything other than verile as he unconvincingly manhandles a few stuntmen and tosses a catwoman on wires across the room, all without throwing his back out. There wasn't going to be any dignified outing with Shatner at the helm, no matter what script he was given, so they might as well have let him have his "god" story, what difference did it make? He'd only screw it up ...
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Old October 9 2014, 10:49 PM   #9
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

2takesfrakes wrote: View Post
What I find so fascinating about THE FINAL FRONTIER is that it completely ignored the aging of the cast. This movie wants absolutely nothing to do with that and is just going to keep doing Business as Usual, like they're just going to live forever and keep cranking these things out.
Well, that's one of the fundamental flaws of the film. There are three ambassadors from the three most powerful empires in Trek, and Starfleet decides to mount a rescue mission using a defective and malfunctioning ship and a crew composed of senior citizens and a skeleton crew...and the only justification for this is Admiral Bob's line, "I need Jim Kirk." Well, ok Bob, but couldn't you have given Kirk another ship and a better-trained crew for this mission?
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Old October 9 2014, 10:58 PM   #10
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

I'd guess Excelsior was in a worse state than Enterprise.
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Old October 9 2014, 11:02 PM   #11
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

And if the Excelsior and the Enterprise-A were the only ships Starfleet had, then that would make sense. And Admiral Bob does say that Starfleet has ships, just not experienced captains. Which is an utterly ridiculous statement.
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Old October 10 2014, 12:02 AM   #12
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Khan 2.0 wrote: View Post
Back at the time between STIV and news of STV, I kind of thought STV would be a story built around what the Klingon ambassador said at the beginning of TVH: "There shall be no peace as long as Kirk lives." That was a very juicy line and big theatrical moment to just let it go. I thought it had foreshadowing of the next movie written all over it.
Yes indeed, a Klingon kirkhunt action movie would've been interesting so long as it had some Romulans too (although I think DC did something like that in their second series 1988 onwards not that it would've mattered to the next movie)
Yup -- Peter David picked this up and ran with it pretty much right from the very first page of the relaunch #1 issue (a ST IV flashback-panel of the Klingon Ambassador shouting the line from the movie).

That story-arc dealt with the larger political implications of that remark in a way that the last two TOS movies really didn't, apart from certain portions of TUC.


Dukhat wrote: View Post
And if the Excelsior and the Enterprise-A were the only ships Starfleet had, then that would make sense. And Admiral Bob does say that Starfleet has ships, just not experienced captains. Which is an utterly ridiculous statement.
Agreed -- very much yet another case of "small-universe syndrome," which TMP also suffered from; the implication being that there are only three active-duty ships in all of Starfleet, or something equally ridiculous.
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Old October 10 2014, 12:05 AM   #13
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

I think a "search for Kirk" (not those words, but the concept) would have been interesting. Start the film off with the Klingons claiming to have executed Kirk for war crimes. At the same time, Spock is made ambassador on behalf of the Federation. An execution tape is circulated. Spock watches it (the audience doesn't actually see it). Kirk's "body" is recovered. There is a funeral. The crew grieves. But something leaves Spock unsettled about the execution. He plays detective and goes on a quest to with his Enterprise friends to find out what really happened. Spock takes the Enterprise to Kronos under the guise of his role as ambassador. Meanwhile, other members of the crew are flying side by side with the Enterprise on the recovered, restored and now fully operational (and cloaked) Bird of Prey which submerged into the SF Bay at the end of TVH. The story unfolds from there. In the end they find Kirk alive and being held captive, Kirk has to throw a few punches to escape, and when they get back to Earth tension between the Klingon Empire and the Federation is higher than ever before.

I doubt Shatner would have been okay with not being in the majority of the film though. But at least he would have had the opportunity to focus more on directing and less on acting.
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Old October 10 2014, 12:23 AM   #14
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

Well McCoy did mention that it "wouldn't be easier to just put an experiance crew back on the ship". Perhaps there has been some sort of trouble and Starfleet has less experienced captains in the fleet now. Either they remaining ship just don't get caught up in anything overly dangerous like Kirk use to every week, or most of them failed at it and got themselves killed. Leaving space as dangerous, and Starfleet having less experiance ship captains, but many ships.

Enterprise is a mess, but I guess they figured all they need to do is get the ship and Kirk to Nimbus III and end the hostage crisis. Enterprise's engines work fine, so it can get there no problem. That doesn't require a full starship crew, as they don't plan to take Sybok anyplace or negotiate with him at all. They figure Kirk and Enterprise will keep the Klingons away by reputation alone. Once done they can negotiate with the Romulans and Klingons for their diplomats or just leave them on Nimbus III and leave. Enterprise goes home, and they can go about figuring out what else is wrong with her.

For TMP, I can see that there may not have been any other "starships" in interception range of the cloud. The cloud seems to be moving at something like warp 7 towards Earth from Klingon space. It might be that the other starships might not have been able to get to the cloud before it got to Earth, or due to the many starships lost during the orignal series, there are only a few actual starships left to begin with. Other ships might be in interception range, but given what the cloud did to the three Klingon cruisers, maybe Starfleet figures that anything less than a starship would be suicide. Scouts USS Columbia and USS Revere would not be enough I suppose
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Old October 10 2014, 01:23 AM   #15
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Re: What else could they have done for Trek V?

After watching ST5 recently and, for the first time in my life, really enjoying it, I'm still kinda glowing from that viewing too much to really nail into ST5.

But I do understand the criticism.

I also thought it was stupid that they didn't have any experienced captains. It made sense in TMP since it's a HUGE crisis and Kirk and the Enterprise are considered the best of the best. But a hostage situation doesn't seem that epic of an issue. But as Ithekro said, Starfleet expected the Klingons to show up and were hoping Kirk's reputation would precede him. That makes more sense than the "no experienced captains" excuse.
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