What happened to the "Commodore" Rank?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Infern0, May 1, 2013.

  1. Infern0

    Infern0 Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2008
    It seemed to be retired sometime between the TOS and TNG eras. Or at least I don't remember any Commodores in the TNG era.

    The rank would have suited Sisko imo.
     
  2. bullethead

    bullethead Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2008
    They probably retired it after seeing a bunch of them do crazy/dumb things in Kirk's time as captain.
     
  3. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    New York State
    Fleet Captain is another rank that dropped out of Star Trek parlance, at a similar authority level too.
     
  4. The Wormhole

    The Wormhole Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2001
    In real life, the US Navy phased out Commodore in the 1980s and replaced it with Rear Admiral, Lower Half. Therefore it was decided in Star Trek that Starfleet would eliminate the rank as well.
     
  5. StarCruiser

    StarCruiser Captain Captain

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2002
    Location:
    Houston, we have a problem...
    The "Rear Admiral, Lower Half" crap was enacted for political reasons. Congress couldn't rap it's combined head (combined IQ of 90) around the idea of a Flag officer not having rank of Admiral (of some type).

    I would have kept the Commodore rank in place - allowing one Flag rank to still have the possibility of commanding a ship in the field. Anyone higher than that would be only a Flag officer, i.e. commanding divisions of the fleet, facilities etc...
     
  6. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2009
    Location:
    The glorious Shetland Isles!
    I think Starfleet Command would have brought it back for Sisko, otherwise they'd have to face him going Sisko on their collective asses.
     
  7. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    I never understood them dropping the Commodore rank, and feel it was a mistake to pattern Starfleet so closely on the US Navy. In my own fictional universe, I use army/air force ranks from both American and UK organizations.
     
  8. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    Location:
    Shangri-La
    No, Starfleet is the West incarnate. And the West is America. Submit! ;)
     
  9. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2006
    Location:
    Star Trekkin Across the universe.
    Under than logic they should retire the Admiral Ranks as well ;)
     
  10. T'Girl

    T'Girl Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2009
    Location:
    T'Girl
    But, but, but ... Starfleet has nothing to do with the US Navy ... nothing I tell you.

    Seriously, it's very possible that the rank of Commodore still exists and we're just not seeing anyone of that rank. It's like TOS and the rank of lieutenant junior grade, there were some officers with a single broken stripe, but for the most part you didn't see them. Seems like you go straight from ensign to full lieutenant.
     
  11. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    Location:
    California
    And that is why, I believe, they dropped it. The U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard were both used in helping define Starfleet (though there have been colonels - Star Trek VI had at least one IIRC).

    Do we really know that it was a unilateral move by congress that forced the elimination the rank of "commodore" or whether it was done at the request of the Navy itself (or Joint Chiefs)?

    Two reasons: 1) the US Navy dropped it; 2) There was a period when "Commodore" conjured up images of ascot wearing Yacht club ne'er-do-wells.

    As do many other authors. Why would one try to put forth the notion that there is only one correct way to setup a fictional military service? If you want, use the Iranian or Chinese navies as your source as they still have commodores.
     
  12. Melakon

    Melakon Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2012
    Location:
    Melakon's grave
    I save foreign or archaic ranks (like Subaltern) for my alien races' militaries. Then one day I found Jemadar in the thesaurus lists, and realized Star Trek was doing the same thing.
     
  13. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2001
    Location:
    Ferguson, MO, USA
    That was the case during TMP (there was no lieutenant j.g. rank according to a memo associate producer Jon Povill gave to costume designer Bob Fletcher--one broken stripe meant ensign, one full stripe meant lieutenant).

    But during TOS, we did see a lieutenant j.g. Joe Tormolen with one broken stripe on his sleeves.
    http://tos.trekcore.com/hd/albums/1x04hd/thenakedtimehd0230.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 2, 2013
  14. Mysterion

    Mysterion Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2001
    Location:
    SB-31, Daran V
    From wikipedia, a history of the rank of commodore in US Navy usage:

    Apply it to Starfleet history/usage as you see fit.
     
  15. USS Excelsior

    USS Excelsior Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2004
    Location:
    Alpha Quadrant
    Fleet Captain still exists but it's not an official rank, just a position for a particular mission if there's no Admiral in charge out in the field. Like during Redemption when Picard had that position when they had their blockade.
     
  16. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Fleet Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2001
    Location:
    Thanks Dad USAF 1947-1972
    And Captain.
     
  17. Timo

    Timo Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2003
    Statistically, we have no particular reason to think that the use of Commodore in Starfleet would have been discontinued. We last heard of one in ST:TMP, after which we have seen up close about a dozen Vice Admirals and just a couple of full, four-pip Admirals in the regular timeline, plus just three two-pip Rear Admirals. In addition to these, there have been unclear cases: lots of background flag officers in the other TOS movies (with very difficult-to-identify pins; many don't even realize Kirk is supposed to be a Rear Admiral), and then these folks in early TNG who wear either zero, one or two pips.

    A single-pip Commodore could easily have slipped through the cracks. Or we could have seen several in focus in early TNG, and it's just customary to address all flag ranks as "Admiral" even when some are Commodores and others are Vice Admirals.

    Similarly, we have no real statistical reason to think that Lt(jg) or LtCmdr would have been omitted from UESF ranks in ENT, even though we never saw anybody wear those particular rank pins...

    It's a bit more complicated with Lt(jg) in ST:TMP, because we did hear not one but two of the heroes address a dashed-braid person as "Ensign" despite said braid that matches that of Lt(jg) Joe Tormolen from TOS. Of course, we could argue that our heroes were out of the loop and unaccustomed to the promotions these people otherwise familiar to them had recently received... But it doesn't seem as if Kirk really knows the "Ensign" he stops at the corridor to ask for directions.

    As for Fleet Captain, this title is only used once in all of Star Trek, for Chris Pike's immediate pre-TOS status - so if it ever were a rank, it may have disappeared before TOS already. It might also simply be the very same thing as Captain, though (the "Fleet" thing differentiating the likes of Pike and Kirk from the likes of Mudd and Yates).

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  18. J.T.B.

    J.T.B. Rear Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    There was no commodore rank in the US Navy when TOS was made, either.
     
  19. Danger Ace

    Danger Ace Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2013
    Location:
    California
    It was also referenced in the original "Star Fleet Technical Manual" published around '75.

    Correction: Dagnabbit, had to go dig up my copy ... folks below are correct it was not in the Tech Manual, but bygosh, I seem to recall seeing an illustration of the junior grade/second Lt. somewhere. Maybe a fanzine back in the day? I did find this blurb at Memory Alpha.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  20. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2001
    Location:
    Ferguson, MO, USA
    A number of ranks from the various shows and movies--including those that have never actually appeared onscreen--appear in various reference books.