Discussion in 'Star Trek - Original Series' started by newtontomato539, Nov 19, 2012.
But doesn't Khan specifically mention 1996 in TWOK?
Oh, yeah, he did. That would just make it a continuity glitch, then -- copying what "Space Seed" said without thinking it through, the same way Ron Moore had an admiral in "Doctor Bashir, I Presume" say the Eugenics Wars were 200 years earlier because he was just copying what TWOK said rather than thinking it through and realizing it'd be more like 380 years by that point.
The Smith & Wesson Model 10 is still in production (four inch barrel only), at what point in time will it be no longer manufactured? If they are produced passed the time period of the third world war, then Sulu's estimate is fine.
Also, Sulu statement of "hasn't been one like this made in a couple of centuries," could be somewhat vague. Today someone could make the general conversation statement that the American Civil War started " a couple of centuries ago," and they would not be politely called on the 49 year inaccuracy. General conversation.
And in Space Seed, Kirk's response of "two centuries we estimate," might have been partially base on his earlier belief that they were dealing with a DY-500 spacecraft built sometime in the 21st century. Plus Kirk might not have been making any effort to be precise with a semiconscious man.
Chekov said he was from the late 20th century, and never gave the exact year.
Khan's statement in TWOK of be from 200 years in the past (okay this is a stretch) might be from no one ever correcting what Kirk first told him.
Sorry, but Khan himself did give the year. I initially forgot that myself, but have since been put straight.
Then a few lines later in the same scene:
Interestingly, Khan's line in the script was originally "three hundred years ago." An October 14, 1981 de Forest Research memo correctly noted that the series was usually dated as being two hundred years in the future, not three hundred, so the line was changed.
The memo doesn't mention the vintage of the Romulan ale nor the opening "In the 23rd Century..." title card, suggesting they weren't developed until later, which is probably why the movie is inconsistent about when it is set.
(The memo also suggests changing the stardate from 6230.3 to 8130.3, which is the stardate in the finished movie, to make it consistent with the first feature).
This is just conjecture, but it's also possible that between being thawed out on the Enterprise, taking over the ship, and being banished to Ceti Alpha V, Khan (despite his superior intellect) never bothered to find out what the actual year was.
I'm sure he knew quite accurately and exactly in ST2 that it was Year 15 of the Second Reign of Khan the Magnificent!
Out of the "not in the late 23rd century" references in TOS and the TOS movies, most are quite vague, possibly unintentional (such as the 900-year thing from "Squire of Gothos" - preempted by Trelane's mobile planet anyway), or otherwise not intended to be taken seriously. The ones relating to the length of time Khan spent asleep are fairly definitive in comparison with, say, the "Tomorrow is Yesterday" joke, though. But we can always argue the time Khan spent asleep is different from the interval between his going to sleep and waking up. After all, he was moving at relativistic speeds in the meantime...
With Khan's lines quoted above, I'd say the first one is him pissed off and setting the record straight with Terrell and Chekov, thus the "1996" and facts about cryogenic freeze. He's telling them like it is.
His second line is him musing poetically on his lost reign, thus the "two hundred years ago" rather than "224 years ago" or whenever. Less accuracy although largely correct.
Given the large area of the world Singh was supposed to have ruled, should not that be "with power over more than a billion?"
With Khan's ego, you would think he would emphasize the largest number possible.
^But that doesn't sound as poetic. And a (US) billion is a thousand millions, so it's technically correct.
EDIT: Come to think of it, since he was supposedly from India, he'd probably go with British usage and refer to 10^9 as a thousand million rather than a billion (which in traditional British usage would be 10^12, an American trillion).
Khan used the Saka calendar common in India. It is 78 years behind the Gregorian. When He said 1996 he meant 2070 Gregorian. The second.time around in saka.calendar y2k really made.a mess of records and the Internet. Thus when spock looked.il the eugenics wars he didn't realize the sourse used the Sakai.calendar not.the Gregorian......
^ Good one!
"Space Seed" certainly muddies up the waters, doesn't it? Consider these scenes:
The first scene aboard the S.S. Botany Bay...
And consider they are making their first encounter with Khan aboard a drifting sleeper ship with suitably warm breathable atmosphere, lighting and artificial gravity, (!!!) all of which works after (at least) 200 years.
Later in the "in bed with a knife at your doctor's throat" scene in Sickbay, Khan essentially repeats Kirk's guesstimate and McCoy confirms it. Of course, Kirk's statement was made in a very excited moment, so it wasn't supposed to be taken literally, and McCoy was simply confirming what Kirk said, not the veracity of Kirk's statement.
IIRC, Golstein & Golstein's "Star Trek Space Flight Chronology" from 1980 seemed rotted in the notion that TOS was set in the late 22nd century, so obviously the authors took their cues from the canon dialogue in the series. For quite a while in the late '70's, I subscribed to this view as well. TMP seemed to shatter this house of cards when Decker suggested that Voyager VI "was launched from Earth more than 300 years ago". (That's from my memory... anybody have an exact transcription? I suspect that's the first clear mention in canon that would set TMP in the late 23rd century)
Of course, these kinds of inconsistencies were part of TOS from the beginning. And it's not just the overall, series-wide continuity that had little fractures here and there, it was also fractures within a single script. Consider "Where No Man Has Gone Before":
Note here that Captain Kirk seems to suggest that the Earth ship Valiant "has been missing for over two centuries". But later...
( NOTE: The Chakotyea.net transcript for "Where No Man..." omitted the "almost" in Kirk's intercraft address. )
I choose to believe that the cylindrical portion of the ship contained a 2001-style centrifuge which produced the gravity.
Another thing to consider: Kirk said at the end that their heading took them near Ceti Alpha, so presumably they were somewhere in that general vicinity already. Now, Alpha Ceti (as it's more properly called) is about 250 light-years away, give or take -- and the Botany Bay was a sublight ship. So assuming they were within, say, 20 ly of Alpha Ceti, then "Space Seed" couldn't have taken place any earlier than 2226 or so.
If we go with the currently accepted date of 2267 for the episode, that's 271 years to cover somewhere around 250 ly, which gives a velocity of somewhere around 93% of lightspeed. At that speed, the time dilation factor would be just about 2.7, so 270-ish years externally would only be 100 years aboard ship, which could help explain why the power was still working. Although it means that getting the Enterprise to match velocities with the BB would've been rather more involved than was shown.
According to Memory Beta, the SFC timeline put TOS in 2207-10 -- early 23rd, not late 22nd. As I said above, they were trying to reconcile the "Space Seed" reference with the references to the 23rd century that some texts had previously made, so they put it as early in the 23rd century as they could.
I must've overlooked that reference, because I clung to the SFC chronology (approximately) until TNG: "The Neutral Zone" gave a 2364 date onscreen.
Could be the difference between when the ship was last heard of and where it was at that time (over two), and when it reasonably might have reached the position the buoy was found (almost two).
"Space Seed" is also interesting in that it expressly establishes that Kirk and crew are speaking Engish aboard the Enterprise, not some future dialect.
KHAN: "I thought I heard . . . English?"
Another interesting thing about "Where No Man..." is that it seems to suggest that the S.S. Valiant is, conservatively, more than 200 years old at the time the Enterprise finds its battered recorder-marker in deep space near the galaxy's edge.
If Kirk's quip about being locked up for 200 years was "just about right" ("Tomorrow Is Yesterday"), that would suggest the faster-than-light Valiant would have to be launched during the Apollo moon missions, if not before.
If you think about it, the setup of "Where No Man" makes no damn sense. If the Enterprise was the first known ship to travel beyond the galaxy's edge, as the dialogue seems to imply, then how the heck did a ship get out there 200 years earlier? If there have been ships capable of making the journey for that long, why hasn't anyone done it in the interim?
It makes even less sense in the context of what's since been established about the Trek universe. Even if you go with the "almost 200 years" reference instead of the "over," it would still have had to be launched only a decade or two after Cochrane's first flight, and probably wouldn't have been capable of much more than warp 1. Since the nearest face of the galactic disk is maybe about 500 light-years away (we're roughly in the middle of the roughly 1000-ly-thick disk), it would've taken centuries to get there. Heck, the Enterprise might've beaten it there!
Why haven't Humans gone back to the moon in forty years? Politics, money, other priorities.
This assumes that the Valiant, or at least it's engines, were indigenous to Earth's technology and not simply purchased from outside. While we don't know the exact timing, aliens (not just Vulcans) did travel to Earth following the first warp flight.
Or the Valiant might have traveled outward initially with Cochrane style engines, and at some point up-graded with extra-terrestrial technology. They journeyed "upwards," stopping to explore, periodically acquiring new technologies, then moved on again. Spending years or decades to reach the barrier.
Just because a ship is crewed by Humans and is a Earth ship, doesn't necessarily mean it was built here. Just "flagged" from here.
One of the things (besides the Vulcans) that prevented the construction of a ship like the NX-01 for the better part of a century, might have been Starfleet's (and it's predecessors) insistence that the ship be built of indigenous Human technology, and not foreign imported hardware.
Politics and cultural pride.
The operators of the Valiant may have felt differently.
I'll add another wrinkle: Even if we assume the S.S. Valiant was only capable of Warp 1.0 typical cruising speed, this does not mean she was limited to "lightspeed" (1c).
I'm a big fan of STAR TREK MAPS, whose INTRODUCTION TO NAVIGATION: STAR FLEET COMMAND booklet contained a detailed discussion of warp drive. The theory behind warp speed described therein is that faster-than-light velocity is affected by the spacecraft's environment, all the way from minor galactic "trade winds" up to dangers that represent fatal risks for travel ("there be dragons!"). So even a Warp 1 ship should be capable of reaching (at least some point along) the Galaxy's edge in weeks or months rather than years under what is called "Cochrane's formula".
I am fond of thinking that the Enterprise and the Valiant were stopped at the negative energy barrier because "Cochrane's variable", the effect that the environment has on warp speeds, was so great that it caused the engines to burn out. This is not discussed in the booklet, but it seems the phenomena of dark matter and dark energy would perfectly complement the "Cochrane's formula" concept.
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