Captain Sonia Gomez & Cmdr LaForge

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Nathan, Mar 26, 2014.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Hell, no! Why would it? Command is just one career specialization. A captain would be useless without the rest of the crew and the expertise they provide.

    I mean, think about it. A military has a pyramidal command structure. The higher the rank, the fewer people there are who hold it. Most people within a naval organization will never reach captain's rank or even commander's rank. Hell, most will never even become officers. Most career military personnel level out at lower ranks. Many will just serve in the military for a few years, then rotate out and find a career in civilian life.


    That's how James T. Kirk and Jean-Luc Picard thought about it. It doesn't follow that every single person in the Federation shares their biases. We know that Ben Sisko aspired to the admiralty rather than starship captaincy. Kathryn Janeway seemed to settle in nicely as an admiral. Jonathan Archer had a career path from captain to admiral to ambassador to councilor to president. So if anything, only 40 percent of Trek series leads have been shown to prefer ship captaincy to flag rank or other career paths.



    That's not a good analogy at all. Captaincy is more like becoming the head professor of a specific university department. Any officer's rank would be the equivalent of a university degree. After all, again, command is merely one of the many specializations within Starfleet. Choosing the command path over sciences or engineering or security is like going for a management degree as opposed to physics or English or history.

    And there are civilians in the Federation. It's important not to confuse the selection bias of the shows we see for an objective portrayal of the UFP as a whole. Starfleet is all-important to the characters we see because we're only seeing shows that are about Starfleet officers, people who are there because they thought that way. Starfleet may be the most prestigious research institution in the Federation because it's responsible for charting the frontiers of space, but it's not the only such institution. We know of numerous canonically established civilian institutions like the Vulcan Science Academy, the Daystrom Institute, the Cochrane Institute, the University of Alpha Centauri, the Regulus III Science Academy, etc.



    No, that is absolutely not how it works in any actual military organization. It doesn't make any sense. After all, any single officer commands a large number of subordinates. The higher your rank, the larger the number of people below your rank, under your command. If an average starship crew is, say, 300 people, with only one captain per ship, that means that at most a third of a percent of Starfleet personnel will ever earn captain's rank.

    People don't just get promoted because they've lasted long enough. It's also a function of whether there are slots available for promotion. That's why Harry Kim was an ensign for 7 years -- because there was no upward mobility on a ship where none of the crew ever rotated out to other posts.


    And Tuvok remained a lieutenant for decades. And O'Brien was a petty officer for decades. There's no single lockstep career path. Only some personnel are on the command track to begin with, and only some of those perform well enough to earn promotion to captain's rank. It's a highly competitive field, so of course most of the contenders will never reach their goal. Again, though, as television viewers we're subject to a selection bias, because we focus on the characters who are capable and gifted enough to earn promotions, rather than the majority of officers who perform competently but never break out of the pack.
     
  2. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    Based on All Good Things, I'd like to see him eventually married to Leah and heading up something like the Daystom Institute, while being a famed writer in his spare time...
     
  3. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    ^ The very notion of Leah Brahms choosing to spend her life with Geordi La Forge is one that fills me with disgust and dread. The only Trek fantasy pairing I find more revolting is Kira and Dukat....
     
  4. Paris

    Paris Commodore Commodore

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    Just curious, but...why? I was never a fan of Brahms, but never really had strong feelings about it one way or another..
     
  5. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    It has nothing to do with Brahms, it has to do with La Forge's utterly reprehensible behavior in "Galaxy's Child."

    My thoughts on the subject can be seen in my TNG Rewatch on Tor.com: "Booby-Trap" and "Galaxy's Child."
     
  6. Paris

    Paris Commodore Commodore

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    Ok. I read both. Strong feelings for sure. Now I can't get "creepy" out of my head ;)
     
  7. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    This assertion only even begins to make sense if you assume that the only value anyone creates in the 24th century anymore is through serving in Starfleet. Which is absurd -- you can't base your entire society around your military.

    There are all sorts of fields of endeavor in which being a starship captain is meaningless -- the arts; education; engineering; medical research; social work; nature preservation; medical care; mental health care; athletics; sociology; politics; etc., etc., etc. The idea that there's even a such thing as the "ultimate achievement in professional life" is just nonsense.
     
  8. DarKush

    DarKush Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I never said becoming captain was the only possible option. Though I do think making Geordi a captain, putting him in the center chair in a new role could lead to character growth. Letting him play off of new characters or maybe even some familiar ones could show aspects of his personality that we haven't seen due to being stuck in the same position and playing largely the same role he has played for decades. One could argue that the same things could be done for him as chief engineer on the Enterprise, and they could, though for the most part, they haven't. Geordi's largely been an overlooked part of an ensemble, with few starring turns.

    I think the girlfriend is a step in the right direction, but more steps need to be taken. As it stands now, I could see Taurik easily taking over as chief engineer and no one would hardly notice. Unfortunately there's little unique or essential that Geordi brings to that role now so I think giving him a new role could be a good thing for the character.
     
  9. Leto_II

    Leto_II Commander Red Shirt

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    Molly and Morn, on the other hand...
     
  10. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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  11. JWolf

    JWolf Commodore Commodore

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    Geordie LaForge: Space Repairman! Have toolkit will travel.
     
  12. Lonemagpie

    Lonemagpie Writer Admiral

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    There is that. I just like catching up to when we see bits of the future...

    That excepted, I'd still prefer to see him end up in charge of something like the Daystrom Institute...
     
  13. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I read The Fall and I can't for the life of me remember a scene betwixt Geordi & Sonya.

    Can anyone point me to the scene in question? Chapter?
     
  14. JeBuS

    JeBuS Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    They're down on a planet, repairing something, walking along. She inquires about his love-life, to gauge his interest. He says he's sort of seeing someone. They shrug and keep going, like it never happened.

    / End character development of Geordi La Forge.
     
  15. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I know it's in Peaceable Kingdoms, and I want to say it's in the first half or so.
     
  16. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think it actually continues the character development of Geordi LaForge. The problem might be for some is that he's happy and content where he is right now.

    But I don't think Gomez was "gauging his interest" as much as confirming a rumor about an old acquaintance.
     
  17. lvsxy808

    lvsxy808 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    They also discuss the curious and questionable orders they've been receiving and the strange passengers they've been asked to carry.

    .
     
  18. Masiral

    Masiral Captain Captain

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    I'm here. Where are you?
    Chapter 18
     
  19. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Do we see any other SCE characters in the Fall or just Sonya? I'm way behind, I still haven't even read Cold Equations yet.
     

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