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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > The Next Generation

The Next Generation All Good Things come to an end...but not here.

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Old February 25 2014, 08:48 PM   #1
jibrilmudo
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Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Back in s3, Lal had much more advanced and natural looking skin than her father, which Data specifically and proudly noted as an advancement by him.

In s7, Thine Own Self, he had half his face ripped off and then later replaced, so we know that part of him isn't so integrated that it can't be replaced, in fact, it seems to be the least trouble some part to fully replace.

I get why they kept Data's skin, being an iconic character and all, but since Data is so keen on being more human, is there any in-canon and internal universe explanation why he doesn't go for more natural skin, or any theories as to why?
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Old February 25 2014, 08:52 PM   #2
Silvercrest
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

He's not in touch with his feminine side.
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Old February 25 2014, 08:57 PM   #3
Melakon
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

He's not the Hannibal Lecter of androids. That's more of a Lore thing.
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Old February 25 2014, 08:57 PM   #4
T'Cal
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

I wondered that too after Unification when they made him look like a Romulan/Vulcanoid. I read rumors when First Contact came out that in the next movie Data would look very different, which was why they didn't fix him at the end. Since his mother had an aging program, I figured that to keep the brilliant Brent Spiner filling the role, the writers would add that his aging subroutine kicked in at some point. Or, maybe B4 had the aging routine unlike Data. Lastly, I was thinking the other day while watching Insurrection that the writers could've had Picard revisit the Baku' planet where he would stay a while with Anij and he would de-age, allowing a younger actor to take over the role for future films.
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Old February 25 2014, 09:04 PM   #5
Levi
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

I always assumed Data had more important things to work on and develop rather then worry about his looks.
Similar to how we are born with our racial traits and features, this is not something we can change and is based upon our parents traits. So, I assumed, Data accepting his appearance as his traits passed down from his father. In his aspirations to become more human, I do not see why he would need to change the look of his skin to accomplish this.
There could be many theoretical reasons why Data would have wanted to, of course. I'm sure that he could update his appearance to look exactly human (especially once he masters human movement?) and would be able to intagrate in amongst people flawlessly. But again, Data's appearance makes him Data and is his own. Which I just don't think is a concern to him.
IMO.
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Old February 25 2014, 09:12 PM   #6
Shik
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

It puts the lube on its skin or else it gets the ODN cabling again. Also, the idea of "naked" Data running around waiting for his new human suit...yeah.
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Old February 25 2014, 09:20 PM   #7
MakeshiftPython
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

There really was never an in-universe logical reason for Data not look more human, given that androids in the 23rd century looked just like humans anyway. I always figured that a behind the scenes reason for having Data looking like he did is to telegraph to viewers that he's not human, his artificial look tells you he's more machine than man.
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Old February 25 2014, 09:58 PM   #8
sojourner
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Yeah, back in the day makeup was cheaper to use than visual effects like the "glowy bits" they use on Almost Human to remind us that Data is an android.
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Old February 25 2014, 10:02 PM   #9
Armored Saint
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Data wants to be more human in his essence, not in his appearance. Growing a beard is more than a cosmetic change, it's a human behavior. Humans can change their hair color, but not their skin color (except if you're Michael Jackson). Also, what skin color should he choose? The easier solution would be taking the same of Noonian Soong, but it would mean for Data to sacrifice a part of his own individuality to look even more like his creator.
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Old February 25 2014, 10:04 PM   #10
jibrilmudo
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Armored Saint wrote: View Post
Data wants to be more human in his essence, not in his appearance. Growing a beard is more than a cosmetic change, it's a human behavior. Humans can change their hair color, but not their skin color (except if you're Michael Jackson). Also, what skin color should he choose? The easier solution would be taking the same of Noonian Soong, but it would mean for Data to sacrifice a part of his own individuality to look even more like his creator.
Well, he would look less like Lore, which might be a tradeoff Data might be willing to make, especially as children often can look like their parents decades earlier, bringing him closer to humanity in that aspect.

I'm also wondering if this new skin had more sensation like what the Borg Queen tempted him with.
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Old February 25 2014, 10:17 PM   #11
Armored Saint
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Having common traits with a sibling is also a human reality.
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Old February 26 2014, 08:21 PM   #12
Vandervecken
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

When I read this thread title I flashed on seeing Data as Buffalo Bill, and Lal in a pit having to spread on skin lotion.
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Old February 26 2014, 09:42 PM   #13
Shik
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Stop stealing my jokes.
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Old February 27 2014, 02:14 AM   #14
Pondwater
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Melakon wrote: View Post
He's not the Hannibal Lecter of androids. That's more of a Lore thing.
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Old February 27 2014, 03:44 AM   #15
The Old Mixer
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Re: Why does Data never take Lal's skin?

Data wished to experience the human feeling of being "comfortable in ones own skin".
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