Picard's comments about Earth's Past - "Encounter at Farpoint"

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Joel_Kirk, Jun 23, 2014.

  1. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well, that did come from the mouth of a very naive 15 year old who only saw Starfleet from rose-colored glasses (i.e. his mother, father, and Picard).;)

    I wonder if he would have ever asked, as a Starfleet officer, how the Romulans became temporary allies of the Federation during the Dominion War?

    Come to think of it, it would have been interesting to see Wesley on DS9...
     
  2. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I think this is truly the biggest difference between Star Trek and its spin-offs. Even in bad episodes of TOS there is a chemistry that is worth watching between Kirk, Spock and McCoy that simply doesn't exist in the later shows.

    Bad TOS episodes still have a "rewatchability" factor that the later shows don't.
     
  3. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    We know that the "we don't lie" Wesley was simply naive. All one has to do is watch "The First Duty". Picard may yammer on about the truth, but at the end of the day, Starfleet lies and covers things up.

    Does anyone think that Starfleet went to the media and told them that one of the Federations longest serving Ambassadors was a Romulan spy?
     
  4. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    ^^^ or that the upper echelons of the Admiralty were infiltrated by brain-hacking bugs in "Conspiracy" or shape-shifting aliens during the Dominion War?

    Yes, Starfleet is just as ruthless as any major power and is willing to act accordingly in order to maintain its existence, with ends always justifying the means. Turning a blind "necessary evil" eye upon the likes of Section 31 while espousing freedom and a transparent democracy was the final proof of that agenda.

    I, too, found Picard's early arrogance about humaniy to be insufferably sanctimonious. It's almost like all of Starfleet was made up of Prius drivers in love with the smell of their own flatulence (South Park reference)! And to my great surprise, this thread has actually provided me with a new appreciation for the pilot - something I thought impossible - almost casting Q in the role of a hero, kicking the Feds in the ass to snap them out of their century-old self-important delusion. Following up that kick with a punch in the gut with the Borg was definitely what it took to show our protagonists that they weren't all that and a bag of chips.

    Was that Roddenberry's idea all along, or did he truly believe the humans had really come that far by the 24th century and were justified in their arrogance?

    And in the final circle of poetic justice, it took the Borg (with exposition by Lilly) in First Contact to demonstrate to Picard just how much a line of bullshit his "evolved sensibility" really was all along. A brilliant arc, if you ask me...
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2014
  5. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    That's probably because the characters still talk like human beings, even though they are decades in the future. Even the Chris Pine version of Kirk listens to Beastie Boys and drives fast cars (when he shouldn't) with a Nokia phone installed. And, nuUhura is the popular hot chick from high school you dream of dating...but she's already taken by another (i.e. in this case, a high ranking officer).

    (I can almost imagine a lovestruck officer coming onto the bridge to give Lt. Uhura a loveletter for lunch in the mess hall when she's off...haha)

    The TOS characters are relatable, but they're from the future. If they were put in our time, like Kirk and crew from Star Trek IV, they would wonder how we got on without the use of technology...and certain advancements? (Kind of like kids who are now growing up on the internet and smartphones, etc.)
     
  6. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Why shouldn't he? This version of the character seems to have spent more time on Earth than his prime universe counterpart. I might have learned to play piano if my Mom hadn't died at while I was young and that may have had an impact on my life.
     
  7. PhoenixClass

    PhoenixClass Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    The Conspiracy bugs and the Founders were outside infiltrators and their actions can't be attributed to Starfleet as a whole.

    Also, do you seriously think that Starfleet is as ruthless as the Borg, or the Dominion, or the Cardassians, or the Klingons?
     
  8. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    Yes, but the point was that the Federation executive branch probably never publically admitted to being infiltrated from said outside forces, either to keep its citizenry from panicking, or to keep its enemies from perceiving it as week - or both. At least, not that has been ever seen on-screen. The books might have some additional information on this front.

    Certain aspects of it, yes (although I don't think including the Borg there is quite fair in this context - their motivations and goals are a bit different than the other non-assimilated races of the galaxy) - and inwardly, not so obvious on the outside. When you think about it, that makes it much more insidious. At least the other powers who have such organizations are up-front with their existence. Section 31 is the ex-felon uncle in the Federation family that nobody wants to talk about. How many Fed citizens really know of its existence and, more importantly, what it does in the name of preservation of their way of life?

    Odo summed it up nicely when he pointed out that the Cardassians had the Obsidian Order and the Romulans had the Tal'Shiar - it made sense that any great power would have such an organization. Whether it's right or wrong is an entirely different debate and up to individual interpretation.
     
  9. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

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    That has really been Q's job every time he appeared in TNG, IMO. Q recognized that 24th-Century Humans had potential for greatness, but definitely weren't there yet and relished in showing them that fact.
    Kind of hard to say. With most things, ideas started by one writer are carried in another direction by another. But I think in the beginning, there was a clear attempt to show that Humanity had improved by the 24th-Century, but it may have been bragged about too many times by Picard and others (while downplaying--if not outright overlooking--the flaws Humanity still had).
     
  10. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I would like to think so. If Picard was insulting Q, personally, and not the military as such, I'd have no problem with it.

    Meaning: If it had been just some random soldier from the 20th century, I'd hope that Picard - arrogant as he is - would not have insulted them and their service, like he did with Q.

    Besides, as we'd later learn, there were plenty of Picard ancestors who served in the military. Weren't there?
     
  11. Shon T'Hara

    Shon T'Hara Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    The simplest explanation is that Picard's a pompous jerk. It's not just his attitude towards human history but even other cultures, like in Who Watches the Watchers and Devil's Dude where he's so smug about not believing any of that god nonsense.
     
  12. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ That's also possible. :lol:

    Maybe that's why Q likes Picard so much - they're a lot alike!
     
  13. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    ^^^ IIRC, that particular scene with Q in the US Marines uniform was a direct poke at the Oliver North/Iran Contra nonsense that was going down at around that time. Although he's shown with Captain's bars instead of the Lt. Col silver oakleaf. They probably didn't want to make it too obvious back then, but I'm pretty sure that's all that was about. DeLancie was so young back then...

    Either way, it should have occurred to Picard that, if a being is advanced enough to chase down the newest and fastest flagship of the Federation, trap it in an energy net parsecs wide in any direction and suddenly appear in its most sensitive command center with full shields up and without the apparent assistance of a conventional transporter, posturing and bluffing probably won't work... :lol:
     
  14. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I forgot about the Ollie North reference. Incorrect rank notwithstanding, wasn't Q's uniform a direct copy of North's?
     
  15. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

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    I believe so, yes, right down to the tossed salad (medals) and the way he wore his cover.
     
  16. Joel_Kirk

    Joel_Kirk Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    True, but he was born in space...and lives in a world, a far future where vehicles hover, ships warp to other worlds, and aliens exist. Yet, again, we can somehow still relate to him....even though his world differs in how people and customs are perceived.

    It's like someone from our time - who grew up in the 1980s, 90s, or 21st Century - listening to artists such as Nancy Wilson, The Supremes, Frankie Valli or Johnny Mathis. Depending on who we are, we probably don't want to go back the 1950s or 1960s, yet there are still some things (e.g. music or films) that we like from that time period. And, those aspects (i.e. music, films) may be things someone from that time period - if they were to hypothetically visit 'us' in 2014 - may be things that people from that time period would still find relatable.

    With Picard and his crew, especially the Picard (and crew) from "Encounter at Farpoint," they would stand out probably a lot more in San Francisco if they were the ones who had to retrieve whales from the 20th Century. The smugness would probably be called out many times....if they - Picard and co. - didn't 'adapt' like Kirk and crew attempted to do.
     
  17. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yet motorcycles still exist... :techman:
     
  18. LMFAOschwarz

    LMFAOschwarz Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And interestingly, look how well Data did in Time's Arrow in adapting to the 19th century! He appeared to do far better than Picard & Co. in spite of his strange appearance. (Though I always wondered where Picard and Friends got all their snappy clothes from. At least Data won a boatload of money with which he could have bought them!)
     
  19. Last Redshirt

    Last Redshirt Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Really have to say that this is the best explanation. Picard, and for the most part the entire cast, for the early part of TNG and even some hints of it later on, were all really aloof and pompous about their beliefs, thinking themselves more enlightened and superior to the rest.
     
  20. PhoenixClass

    PhoenixClass Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Well, in his defense, Picard was not a god and Ardra was a fake so he had every reason to not want those populations deceived.

    I'm noticing a theme in the posts from people who are more critical of Picard that I'd like for you all to clarify: Is it a matter of style or attitude that you object to, or is it his intellectual positions?