Mr. Spock instead of Sir or Commander

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by Admiral_Young, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. Green Shirt

    Green Shirt Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    U.S.S. Enterprise, Starship Class

    Not 100% sure, but T'Pring was probably forever known as "Bitch" following the events of Amok Time. Stonn was stuck with the unfortunate handle of "Dooey".
     
  2. Hambone

    Hambone Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2006
    Location:
    Land of cheese, sausage and beer
    Just don't call him Doctor Spock.
     
  3. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    There are a few instance where "Miss Uhura" is used, and IIRC it's always from Spock. One is in "The Man Trap," when Spock tells her she made an error in the frequency column and they get into the thing about Vulcan's moon. I can't remember the rest, but I know there are a couple in S1.

    --Justin
     
  4. Green Shirt

    Green Shirt Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    U.S.S. Enterprise, Starship Class
    Didn't Roger Korby's Kirk android refer to Christine as "Miss Chapel"? Couldn't tell for sure whether he said "Miss", or "Nurse".
     
  5. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    I'm pretty sure you're right. "Androids don't eat, Miss Chapel."

    --Justin
     
  6. JustKate

    JustKate Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2008
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    Was Chapel's rank ever identified? I can't remember. I don't remember the "Miss" reference, though I don't doubt that there is one - it seems to me that she was almost always referred to as "Nurse,' but surely she had a rank. Right?
     
  7. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    ^I don't think it was ever identified, either. She had no sleeve stripes, and nurse is traditionally a commissioned officer job, so I'd say the best bet is she was an ensign. But with the TOS uniforms, you never know.

    --Justin
     
  8. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Location:
    Gotham
    Chapel's rank wasn't identified during the original series but in Star Trek The Motion Picture Dr. Chapel has Lieutenants bars on her shoulders I believe. Scott is indeed normally referred to as Mr. Scott or Scotty by the crew never by Commander Scott. I think Admiral Morrow in Star Trek III calls Scotty Commander Scott when he assigns him as "Captain" of engineering for the USS Excelsior.

    I don't mind the rest of the crew calling each other Mr. instead of their ranks or Captain Kirk doing it (after all he is the Captain) just Spock since he's the second in command.
     
  9. Green Shirt

    Green Shirt Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2005
    Location:
    U.S.S. Enterprise, Starship Class
    I've always had a little trouble understanding Shatner at times. On more than one occasion I heard him say "Miss Spock". ;)
     
  10. Chaos Descending

    Chaos Descending Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2001
    Location:
    Grand Canyon State
    Until the early 70's nothing. It's still common practice now.

    Generally anyone that is in a usual working relationship with said officer. Some scrub E-2 from another Department would probably call him "Sir" or "Lieutenant Jones", the same E-2 in his own Division would probably call him "Mister Jones".

    IIRC, it's not in the rules, it's more Naval tradition.
     
  11. CaptainStoner

    CaptainStoner Knuckle-dragging TNZ Denizen Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Location:
    Hill dweller
    Yes, I think the idea was to avoid using ranks much, except "Captain", and "Captain Kirk" with its alliterative goodness.
    We see it a fair amount in TNG also, and indeed, it gets confusing when we hear "Commander" a few too many times. Mr. Data. Mr. Worf. Occasional Lt. or Commander.
    It also makes sense simply because if you're wanting to get Data's attention, "Commander" is insufficient input unless you're standing in his field of view.

    I imagine that this had to have been in the TOS writer's guide, in order to better establish the character's actual names.
     
  12. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    I'm not surprised. It became official to use the rank title then, but those things die hard. In my time ('88-'92) everybody called their Div-O "Mister (whatever)" but I can't remember ever hearing a female officer called miss, mrs. or ms.

    Pretty much. Here are some things about the subject from official sources:


    From The Naval Officer's Guide, 1944, the period when the most navy vets in TOS's day had served:

    In oral communications, officers below the rank of commander may be addressed as "Mister ______," and in the case of the officers in the Medical Corps as "Doctor ______." Otherwise, their title is used to preface their name. It is generally considered improper to address a lieutenant commander as "Commander." However, the phrase "the Commander" designates the Executive Officer of the ship and him alone, even though there might be other commanders attached to the same ship.

    The Bluejacket's Manual, 17th edition (1963-1967):

    Naval officers with the rank of commander and above are addressed by their titles. Lieutenant commanders and below are addressed as "Mister," except women officers, who are addressed as "Miss" or "Mrs."

    Medical officers are addressed by their titles or as "Doctor," if of commander rank or above, while those of the rank of lieutenant commander and below are addressed as "Doctor."
    [...]
    The correct response to a woman officer is "Yes, Lieutenant" or "Yes, Miss (Mrs.) Brown." Note that the title, no matter what the rank, may be used alone, while "Miss" or "Mrs." must be used with the last name.
    [...]
    As a general rule, use the officer's title and name. It is better to say "Yes, Commander," "No, Doctor Moriarty," "Yes, Mister Franz," than to say "Yes, sir" "No, sir." However, in long conversations you can break the monotony by using "sir" from time to time -- except with women officers who should be addressed as "ma'am."

    You may address "the captain" -- that is, the commanding officer, whatever his rank -- as "Captain" without using his name. You may also address "the commander" -- that is, the executive officer, whatever his rank -- as "Commander" without adding his name.

    From The Naval Officer's Guide, 10th edition (1991):

    Navy regulations Art. 0810 states that, except as provided in the succeeding paragraph, every officer in the naval service shall be designated and addressed in official communications by the title of grade preceding his or her name.

    In official spoken communications, officers will be addressed by their grade (as distinct from the custom prior to 1973, when officers of the grade of commander and above were addressed by their grade and those below commander were called "mister").​

    Whether or not it was the only reason, my guess would be that the writers did a little research, asked around, or paid attention to movies like The Caine Mutiny and got the idea that most navy officers on a ship, except the captain, were called "mister."

    --Justin
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
  13. JustKate

    JustKate Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2008
    Location:
    Indiana, USA
    ^ There would have been no shortage of movies showing naval protocol - if nothing else, there were all those WWII movies and plays set on ships and submarines. Hollywood went to town on those through the 1950s at least. Oooh, "Mr. Roberts" for example.
     
  14. Captain Robert April

    Captain Robert April Vice Admiral Admiral

    You usually don't hear a full rank unless it's from a higher ranking officer who's reminding the lower ranking person of their position (a minor irritant from the B5 pilot when everyone and their uncle is addressing the first officer as "Lieutenant Commander").

    A nifty example of it being done properly was in an episode of JAG where Raab is getting a little hot under the collar over the case at hand and Admiral Chegwiggen pulls him aside and addresses him as "Lieutenant Commander Raab", as a little reminder that he's mouthing off to a two-star admiral and his commanding officer.
     
  15. Chaos Descending

    Chaos Descending Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2001
    Location:
    Grand Canyon State
    Yeah, when a higher ranking officer calls a LTJG "Lieutenant Junior Grade" or LCDR "Lieutenant Commander", it's the equivalent of your mom calling you by your first, middle, and last names.

    You're in trouble.
     
  16. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    Could also be Roddenberry's insistance that starfleet (some how) was not a military organization.

    Kirk was the captain, also his job position. McCoy was doctor, his job position. Scott was refer to simply as engineer many times. At least Spock was never called number one.

    And how would Spock have handled that old british military tradition.

    "Only first names in the officer's mess, except for the captain."
     
  17. EnsignHarper

    EnsignHarper Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2006
    Location:
    OCNY
    Which brings up the thought that McCoy called Kirk almost exclusively by his first name - except when he was trying to make some sort of point (or being a smart ass :lol:)! And even being an extremely formal Vulcan, Spock started calling Kirk 'Jim' quite a bit. And we all know Scotty called his captain 'Jim', exactly ONCE - under extreme dire circumstances in the mirror universe.
     
  18. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Location:
    Gotham
    The only plausible explanation that I have for it is that Spock is also the senior science officer aboard Enterprise and thus open to be called "Mister" Spock.
     
  19. Hober Mallow

    Hober Mallow Commodore Commodore

    I always figured Spock had a name like Mr. T. No matter who you were, you called him Mister Spock.
     
  20. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2002
    Location:
    Gotham
    Except they call him Mr. S!