Changelings and individuality

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by E-DUB, Jul 20, 2013.

  1. E-DUB

    E-DUB Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    From the "The drop becomes the ocean" speech of the female founder you kind of get the impression that the changelings are all part of the greater whole of the "Great Link", but when Odo emerged, he was still Odo. When he linked with Laas, you didn't end up with two "Odo-Laas"'s.

    What do people think?
     
  2. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    I rather hope that the reality of Founder existence is more alien and interesting than just a fixed number of shapeshifting people occasionally taking a swim in the same pool.

    Staying almost humanly individualistic may be a characteristic of immature Changelings only, and Odo may be even exceptionally atavistic for having grown among Solids; others of his age might already have learned to abandon individuality more completely.

    Perhaps the Founders are indeed just one entity, and when it has "children", it in actual fact just detaches some autonomous parts of itself to gather new experiences, and then return so that those experiences can be fully assimilated. A bit like how when Odo shatters, his fragments "instinctively" flow back into a whole (say, when he's a glass in "Vortex"), but Odo himself strongly believes that his fragments do not possess his full abilities and will at the very least lose their shape when detached for a long time... The Hundred may be fragments of another sort, on a higher level.

    And who knows, perhaps the great planet-sized pool they called the Link is just another fragment of a still higher-level entity?

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  3. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I get the impression that they are distinct individuals but when they are linked their consciousnesses are totally merged as if they are not. Otherwise Odo could split into fifty Odos.
     
  4. Data's Cat

    Data's Cat Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    That's exactly the impression I have.
     
  5. E-DUB

    E-DUB Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Did anyone else get a "I will call him mini-me" vibe from that?
     
  6. bbjeg

    bbjeg Admiral Admiral

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    Right here buddy.
    The best way I can explain it is to reference an old show called Herman's Head, where multiple consciences conduct single actions. When Odo leaves, his memories stay and vice versa with the link and his essence. You kinda get to see an Odo-Laas in "Sacrifice Of Angels".
     
  7. _C_

    _C_ Commander Red Shirt

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    I think it's very similar to the Borg Collective, with the exception that they only hear the other voices when they link up and they can't go assimilate other people.

    Odo "grew up" without the link, and as a result he seems okay without needing it. Other Changelings who lived in the link their whole lives appear to be rather disconcerted if they have to go a long time without it.

    In the case of Laas, I think he was jaded by the fact that he didn't have the kind of rapport with humanoids like Odo did.

    But deep down even Odo felt the pull to the Great Link once he got a few tastes of it.


    You've gotta wonder how the Female Founder is handling solitary life in a high security prison. She must be going crazy.
     
  8. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    I thought the Federation didn't believe in prisons? The Founder is merely credited with agreeing to "stand trial" and "accept responsibility"; we never hear anything about a punishment, or what verdict the trial might have delivered, or even if a trial was ever held.

    As for why Odo doesn't split to fifty Odos, or create a twin brother or a wife from his own goo, this may all be due exclusively to him being way too young.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  9. Dale Sams

    Dale Sams Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Dec 29, 2012
    Well, we see work camps that Paris was held in. Ro seemed to have been in some stockade. Quark seems to get three month sentences in the DS9 brig from time to time. Bashir's dad was sent to prison for three years or something like that.

    And FWIW, Star Trek Online shows the Founder to have been kept imprisoned for some 20 years.
     
  10. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    Aug 26, 2003
    ...But supposedly for the usual therapy-and-rehabilitation stuff, with flexible prospects for getting out. It doesn't seem likely that the Federation would have seen it desirable or possible to rehabilitate the Founder.

    Assuming it was a Federation prison... Could have been the folks on Garon II were the ones holding her for her crimes. The Federation would have been happy to hand her over! :devil:

    Not under Federation law, though. Possibly Bajoran, perhaps Ferengi, most probably just Odoan.

    Ah, that much is true. Too bad...

    Timo Saloniemi