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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek TV Series > Star Trek - Original Series

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

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Old August 2 2014, 09:48 PM   #16
T'Girl
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Re: Kirks middle name

In Gene Roddenberry's (pre- Star Trek) military drama The Lieutenant, Gary Lockwood played Second Lieutenant William Tiberius Rice.



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Old August 2 2014, 09:52 PM   #17
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Re: Kirks middle name

As early as the second regular production episode ("Mudd's Women"), Mudd says: "No, my dears. After one more job for you, it won't be Harry Mudd that's trapped. It will be a gentleman named James T...." and then he is interrupted by Eve McHuron entering the room. He also has a "Captain James T. Kirk" nameplate just outside of his cabin in "The Enemy Within" (the trhird regular production episode).

By now, it's pretty well known that in the television series The Lieutenant, created and produced by Gene Roddenberry, the lead character (played by Gary Lockwood [Gary Mitchell]) was titled William Tiberius Rice. It looks like Tiberius was a popular name with Roddenberry. I wouldn't be surprised if, for the purposes of the second pilot, they decided not to have Gary Lockwood from the recently-cancelled The Lieutenant series make reference to another character named Tiberius. It might just have been too insider-y. I speculate that Roddenberry always wanted Kirk's middle name to be Tiberius, but didn't want to do any silly stuff to jeopardize the success of this second pilot.
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Old August 2 2014, 10:14 PM   #18
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Re: Kirks middle name

The final draft of the second pilot indicates "James R. Kirk." If Roddenberry had wanted it to be "James T. Kirk" from the beginning, I suspect he would have written it that way. There's nothing too "inside" about a middle initial.

Just something he changed his mind about when it went to series (or forgot about).

The fact that Gary Lockwood played a character with the middle name of "Tiberius" on Roddenberry's pre-Trek series does suggest to me that David Gerrold's memory may not be 100% on this. The similarities could also, of course, be a coincidence. Hard to say with any degree of certainty.
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Old August 2 2014, 10:29 PM   #19
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Re: Kirks middle name

GSchnitzer wrote: View Post
It looks like Tiberius was a popular name with Roddenberry.
If things had been slightly different, James T. Kirk could have been named "Dylan Hunt."

Which would have made Shatner one of four actors in a Roddenberry production to have that name.

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Old August 2 2014, 11:08 PM   #20
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Re: Kirks middle name

I think what people are overlooking is that alphabets, like languages, are mutable, and obviously by the 23rd century the letters R and T are regarded as alternate forms for the same letter, in much the way that I and J used to be regarded as the the same letter, or U and V were barely differentiated.

Of course, R and T have quite different sounds, but then both C and G are letters which correspond to very different sounds. Why are we supposing that English should have stopped evolving in 1965?
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Old August 2 2014, 11:13 PM   #21
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Re: Kirks middle name

What is it exactly that inspires ones' use of their middle initial?

Everyone beats up on TNG's Leland T. Lynch for doing so, but James T. Kirk gets a pass for essentially doing the same thing. That's fascinating to me.
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Old August 2 2014, 11:15 PM   #22
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Re: Kirks middle name

LMFAOschwarz wrote: View Post
Everyone beats up on TNG's Leland T. Lynch for doing so, but James T. Kirk gets a pass for essentially doing the same thing.
As far as I recall, James T. Kirk didn't feel the need to remind you that he was James T. Kirk every time somebody needed to talk to James T. Kirk ... slight difference, of course.
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Old August 2 2014, 11:22 PM   #23
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Re: Kirks middle name

That's a good distinction. Kirk was one who'd just as easily introduce himself with "Mine's Jim Kirk." as easily as "This is Captain James T. Kirk, commanding the U.S.S. Enterprise.". One did get the impression that Lynch would have used the 'T' even if he were addressing Miri.
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Old August 2 2014, 11:55 PM   #24
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Re: Kirks middle name

It was an academy hazing name J.R.K.-Jerk.
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Old August 3 2014, 12:05 AM   #25
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Re: Kirks middle name

LMFAOschwarz wrote: View Post
What is it exactly that inspires ones' use of their middle initial?

Everyone beats up on TNG's Leland T. Lynch for doing so, but James T. Kirk gets a pass for essentially doing the same thing. That's fascinating to me.
Lynch is an idiot because he formally identifies himself over ship's intercoms. Kirk gets a pass because he only does that in first contact situations and by subspace radio.

And yeah, why do people use initials to distinguish? People like John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard M. Nixon, Gerald R. Ford, George W. Bush...

Then there's those using their full names.

"Hi! I'm Robert Louis Stevenson!"
"Hi! I'm Hans Christian Andersen!"
"Hi! I'm Philip Seymour Hoffman!"
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Old August 3 2014, 12:31 AM   #26
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Re: Kirks middle name

The reason for George W. Bush using his middle initial is pretty obvious. His father also retroactively became George H. W. Bush for all time, though nobody used his initials when he was president or vice-president.
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Old August 3 2014, 12:35 AM   #27
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Re: Kirks middle name

Gov Kodos wrote: View Post
It was an academy hazing name J.R.K.-Jerk.
That's actually pretty clever.
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Old August 3 2014, 01:28 AM   #28
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Re: Kirks middle name

BillJ wrote: View Post
Gov Kodos wrote: View Post
It was an academy hazing name J.R.K.-Jerk.
That's actually pretty clever.
I agree, it works perfectly in universe without any of the gymnastics some explanations go through.
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Old August 3 2014, 01:50 AM   #29
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Re: Kirks middle name

LMFAOschwarz wrote: View Post
What is it exactly that inspires ones' use of their middle initial?
Maybe he used the "T." to distinguish himself from all the other James Kirks?

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Old August 3 2014, 02:11 AM   #30
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Re: Kirks middle name

Marsden wrote: View Post
BillJ wrote: View Post
Gov Kodos wrote: View Post
It was an academy hazing name J.R.K.-Jerk.
That's actually pretty clever.
I agree, it works perfectly in universe without any of the gymnastics some explanations go through.
Thanks, I was thinking of it humorously, but in universe his habit of introducing himself with the T could be a habit acquired from back then of correcting his classmate comedians.
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