Similitude vs. Tuvix

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by Captain Kathryn, Jul 9, 2013.

  1. Captain Kathryn

    Captain Kathryn Commodore Commodore

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    A lot of people condemn Janeway for separating Tuvix, but what Archer did in "Similitude" doesn't seem to be that different on a basic level. The only differences seem to be that, on ENT, there was a desperate situation involved and that Archer CHOSE to create the cloned copy of Trip in order to save him. In a way, one could argue that in and of itself that act was immoral. Creating a life that is destined to soon die to save another. At least Janeway did not CHOOSE to combine Tuvok and and Neelix. It was an accident.

    That said, the main difference is that at the end, the Sim chose death to save Trip in a way that Tuvix didn't choose death to save Tuvok and Neelix. Sim knew there was a possible cure that would allow him to live longer, but the consequence would be that Trip would die in result. However, Sim's death was more of a "true death" in the sense that at the end, they had a dead body. Also the circumstances surrounding Sim's creation and death were darker and shadier than on Tuvix because creating him was deliberate. They must have known that the Sim would not take kindly to being created in a lab, being forced to work, and then to die shortly after.

    What do you guys think? Which was worse?

    I don't mean to be starting another "Tuvix thread".

    Just wondering which circumstance seemed "worse" to you?
    Obviously neither situation was even close to ideal...
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2013
  2. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The fundamental difference is Sim in the end however reluctantly did volunteer for the procedure. Tuvix didn't and was killed against his will.

    Really the big ethical dilemma to me is what gave them the right to "grow" a sentient being for the sole purpose of harvesting it? But hey, small change compared to the genocide that is Dear Doctor.
     
  3. Captain Kathryn

    Captain Kathryn Commodore Commodore

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    That was my quandary.

    ENT has one thing going for it in that Sim CHOSE to die.

    But, what it has going AGAINST it is that...they created the being on purpose, deliberately in the first place...at least Tuvix was an accident.

    So I don't know which is worse, honestly.
     
  4. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It was a good episode in a morbid kind of way just like Tuvix and the similarities are there to be certain. It was a good scene when Sim said "you're not a murderer" and Archer asked him not to make him one. But really by the time Sim was created he was one. He made Sim to save Trip's life. That's supposed to be his whole reason for existing. So either way he's already played god and one of them's gonna die and Archer -was- a murderer by that point.

    And our dear Doctor Phlox conveniently keeps to himself that he can extend Sim's lifespan because well... that will keep him from helping out. At least Janeway was honest about what she did. She killed Tuvix because she liked Tuvok and Neelix more. The fact that Kes crying over Neelix persuaded her is proof of that. This crew... really shied away from the issue.
     
  5. Third Nacelle

    Third Nacelle Captain Captain

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    By sheer coincidence I first saw Similitude around the same time that I first read Never Let Me Go. In that book, clones are raised knowing when they grow up their organs will be harvested to save "real" people. They just go along with it, because that's just how it is and they've been raised to believe that's their purpose.

    You can say it made a difference because Sim chose to die to save Trip, but did he really? Weren't they sort of prodding him toward that choice his entire life?

    I can't see how it's ethical to create and kill one sentient being to save another, even if that being does go along with it.
     
  6. M.A.C.O.

    M.A.C.O. Commodore Commodore

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    Tuvix was worse. Transporter accident created a new life from two individuals. They should've accepted this change (Federation Principles after all) and not pursued the course of separating them in to two individuals again.

    With Sim it wasn't just his life that was at stake at being lost it was Trip's. It's reminiscent of the movie "The Island" with Ewan McGregor and Scarlett Johansson. Clones were created by the wealthy and their bodies, and organs were used for a multitude of purposes should their original need them. However Sim only had a short life expectancy to begin with. It's not like "The Island" where the clones were capable of living full lives. Sim had weeks if not months to live a full life before he would expire. I can understand the logic behind it. It's similar to what we have today with organ cloning and transplants. Sim just happened to have a mind and could think and make decisions. If he hadn't he would be no different than a cloned liver that would be transplanted into an alcoholic who has used and abused their original liver.

    Not squeaky clean but given Archer's situation I think he was justified to allow Pholox the go ahead with the cloning. Had Sim not volunteered or ran away like he planned then Trip would've died and Sim would've have also.
     
  7. Fruitcake

    Fruitcake Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Wasn't Sim doomed to die soon? As in, a use by date?
     
  8. Infern0

    Infern0 Captain Captain

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    If I recall, Archer did say that if they were in peacetime he would consider the option to try and save Sim but he didn't have that choice because the entire planet was at stake and he couldn't complete the mission without Trip, it was a case of the needs of the many...

    BTW, simmilitude was a much better episode, than Tuvix. I actually shed a tear haha
     
  9. Infern0

    Infern0 Captain Captain

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    Phlox had some experimental procedure that he thought might have been able to extend sims life
     
  10. Bukiyo

    Bukiyo Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I think everyone is forgetting that when the decision to make Sim was made, Phlox thought he could harvest the parts needed without killing Sim. So they would have Trip and a copy of Trip with a short life span running around. After Sim grew up Phlox realized the procedure would kill Sim. I don't think the decision to make Sim was morally wrong, it's no different than parents who have another child to use the stem cells from the placenta to cure an already sick child they have. What unfortunately happened was that it turned out the surgery would kill Sim. That's when the dilemma came in. Well, and the dilemma that Sim only had a 15 day life span, but whose to say that's better or worse than being a slug in a jar.

    (Not going to even touch Tuvix.)
     
  11. HolidayRomantic

    HolidayRomantic Phloxist Moderator Moderator

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    ^^ This, all of this, I agree. You covered everything I was thinking to mention as I read through this thread. :)

    I only saw "Tuvix" once. The ending made me very uncomfortable, and I've not sought it out to watch since. I've seen "Similitude" more times than I can count, and loved it every time. Both episodes have that classic-Trek "impossible dilemma" storyline, but "Similitude" drew me in without putting me off--perhaps because Sim chose to sacrifice his life to save Trip and help save the world. And because you could literally see the toll the situation was taking on Archer, as he grew more haggard with each passing day. And Phlox being the surrogate father who has to perform the surgery on his "son." And Sim's unfettered, unrequited feelings for T'Pol. And Sim petting Porthos at the end. It just destroyed me. Beautifully done, heartbreaking. One of my top 3 episodes of Enterprise.
     
  12. Mach5

    Mach5 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Tuvix was just Tuvok contaminated with all the Neelix's repulsiveness.

    God, my disappointment when furball survived the separation process...

    On the other hand, Sim was a compelling, likable character, and his death was tragic despite being necessary and unavoidable.
     
  13. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

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    I think "Similitude" did a much better job of touching on the similar ethical problems than "Tuvix". And Sim was a more heroic character when it came to accepting the inevitable. Though it might have been sort of interesting if they had let Trip die and a long-life Sim had to take his place.
     
  14. Silvio Dante

    Silvio Dante Ensign Newbie

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    I shed more than one :)

    I don't remember the Tuvix episode to comment on it.

    However the Similtude creation was done for the greater good. Also his natural lifespan was going to be 15 days. Phlox genuinely thought they could operate without it resulting in Sim's death...
     
  15. Captain Kathryn

    Captain Kathryn Commodore Commodore

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    I take it you're not a fan of Neelix? :lol: :lol:
     
  16. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Sim only chose death because the alternative was a few more days of life and then death.

    The moral dilemma in Similitude to me wasn't killing him so much as creating him. Creating a sentient life form for a strictly utilitarian purpose. And it's something they probably wouldn't have done if they weren't in a situation where Trip's survival didn't significantly increase the odds of saving Earth.

    So the difference between Tuvix and Similitude is the magnitude of the stakes.
     
  17. JirinPanthosa

    JirinPanthosa Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It's more like if the parents had the child for the sole purpose of being able to donate organ parts to an already sick child they have on a by-need basis.
     
  18. Bad Thoughts

    Bad Thoughts Commodore Commodore

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    Sim represented the grim possibility that human life might be valued only for the organs that can be harvested. Tuvix was a riff on Freaky Friday.
     
  19. JJohnson

    JJohnson Captain Captain

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    And "The Island" was a complete knock-off of "Parts: The Clonus Horror" - in some obvious ways. Thank you MST3K.
     
  20. Mach5

    Mach5 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Are you kidding? I love the guy!

    Whats not to...

    I can't do this.