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Old July 18 2014, 11:41 PM   #46
JirinPanthosa
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

So what you're saying is, fictional universe in which magic exists = childish, fictional universe in which all the science is made up = not childish?

*scratches head*
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Old July 19 2014, 12:15 AM   #47
Melakon
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

I don't think you'll be getting an answer from the OP, apparently he's on an indefinite absence.
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Old July 21 2014, 03:14 AM   #48
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Well, it's all kind of a big crapshoot. Why, we saw Noel Bartley Vautrain doing tricks that even in a fanciful imagining of Frontier Days were interpreted as magic and then what, two months later, he turns up (personal styling a bit different granted) as a globally powerful icon whose abilities are grounded in the mundane realm of advanced manipulated genetics. Who's really to know!!!


Seriously though, from early on in the ST historical account, there have been numerous publications by people in the show's creative orbit, as well as hardcore habitues, that have sought to painstakingly document so much of its wizardry in grounded explanations and schemata. Doesn't that imply an intent, official or not, that seems to have been to make everyone viewing this world think of its possibilities, at least as represented by what is seen in Starfleet, while perhaps fantastically telescoped, as being extensions of real scientific endeavor as opposed to generic spaceman hocus pocus?
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Last edited by Drone; July 21 2014 at 03:59 AM. Reason: Magic
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Old July 21 2014, 04:39 PM   #49
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

^ It's too early in the morning (8:39am) for me to understand anything you said after "Well".
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Old July 21 2014, 05:18 PM   #50
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

I've always thought that telepathy seemed really out of place in Star Trek, like a kind of magic. Now, I realize that it's logically inconsistent for me to readily accept Q, the Prophets, Gomtuu, "Junior," and the like, but I suppose then that skepticism extends only to humanoids.

Does Sto-vo-kor count as magic?
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Old July 21 2014, 05:45 PM   #51
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

It's as magical as Sha Ka Ree.
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Old July 21 2014, 06:36 PM   #52
Cyke101
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Melakon wrote: View Post
It's as magical as Sha Ka Ree.
Well, we know that "God" is really just a powerful entity. I'm a bit more mystified that Sha Ka Ree has the cloud patterns of a bad combover. That's magic.
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Old July 21 2014, 06:41 PM   #53
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

The fake Venus Drug. Or even the real one, for that matter.
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Old July 21 2014, 07:12 PM   #54
Nightdiamond
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Trek has firmly established that ghosts exist.

Vampire muses are real.

The Greek gods were real.
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Old July 21 2014, 09:27 PM   #55
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Cyke101 wrote: View Post
Well, we know that "God" is really just a powerful entity.
And if you think about it, the entity wasn't really all that powerful.

It was obviously trapped on the planet (I think someone tricked it into the trap), it apparently requires a starship to travel through space and get through the barrier. My impression is it didn't know initially that there was a starship in orbit.

It could communicate to a degree with Sybok over a large distance, project different images (mentally?) or actually change shape, and it could shoot "lightning bolts." But that's about all we saw of it's abilities.

So, not that powerful.

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Old July 22 2014, 10:48 PM   #56
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

I would say Q. But they try to explain it with science by making them a sort of alien species.
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Old July 22 2014, 11:57 PM   #57
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

So what isn't magic? Might be a question with a shorter answer. I mean, do we just automatically label the currently inexplicable as "magic"?

Fans of Pratchett will remember Night Watch, where the History Monk Lu-tze is trying to explain to accidentally time-traveling Commander Vimes (who is also a Duke, with feelings of gilt) why they can't simply just send him back to his correct time. He says at one point, after many metaphors and at first tentative explanations are shared, "you're a bright man, Your Grace. I can't keep calling everything magic."

So even in a pretty magical setting, a smart, knowing character, who I sure as hell think of as practicing "magic," with his order's "procrastinators" and other time-spooling devices, disdains the label as a nod in the direction of ignorance.

I don't think of what the Q do/does as magic, for example. I think he, and the Thasians, and Gary Mitchell, etc, interact with the universe in special ways; not "magic," not technology, but some third or fourth or more ways of manipulating the universe. I don't know what those ways are, but I don't have to admit that they'll always be inexplicable, which I think is the sine qua non of magic.
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Old July 24 2014, 03:48 AM   #58
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Drone wrote: View Post
Well, it's all kind of a big crapshoot. Why, we saw Noel Bartley Vautrain doing tricks that even in a fanciful imagining of Frontier Days were interpreted as magic and then what, two months later, he turns up (personal styling a bit different granted) as a globally powerful icon whose abilities are grounded in the mundane realm of advanced manipulated genetics. Who's really to know!!!
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^ It's too early in the morning (8:39am) for me to understand anything you said after "Well".
Sorry, I was in pop icon flash recognition mode I guess and didn't stop to think. Well, the reference was to Ricardo Montalban and his original air time transformation from the Lord of Limbo on WWW to our enduring Eugenics War Fab Personality, Khan.
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Old July 24 2014, 06:55 AM   #59
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Behold the magical turbolift: the lift that moves so slowly it can only be explained by magic:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=75jU8n3F9aI (1:21 in)
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Old July 24 2014, 08:11 AM   #60
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Re: Examples of magic in the Star Trek universe?..

Cyke101 wrote: View Post
I've always thought that telepathy seemed really out of place in Star Trek, like a kind of magic. Now, I realize that it's logically inconsistent for me to readily accept Q, the Prophets, Gomtuu, "Junior," and the like, but I suppose then that skepticism extends only to humanoids.
I can definitely see where you're coming from. It stands out as an oddball beside the fantasy elements that are closer to the hard science fiction end of the fantasy scale, like warp drive and the transporter.

I think the willingness to treat the paranormal in-universe as real phenomena, even if unexplained phenomena, indicates an attitude of the writers.

Certainly, "The Cage" exemplified beings that Roddenberry considered more highly evolved than humanity, and telepathy was an integral element. In the second pilot WNMHGB, parapsychology and the paranormal are treated as something that even the characters in-universe don't fully understand, but nevertheless have statistical evidence for in their ESPer ratings (which become magnified by the barrier cloud).

Fast forward to the series proper and ahead to the spin-offs, and ESP and telepathy are fully embraced in-universe, at least in the case of aliens. Under Roddenberry's leadership and example, on some level the writers must have felt that, in aggregate, viewers would accept the paranormal as something plausible. They're not wrong about that.

I'm not aware of any episode in any series that offered a technobabbly explanation of telepathy. I'd be interested if anyone knows of one.
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