Why didn't Kirk just contact Sulu?

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by Pawleygirl, Oct 29, 2012.

  1. Pawleygirl

    Pawleygirl Ensign Red Shirt

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    There is something that I've wanted to know for a while now. So Valeris won't tell the names of her co-conspirators, so Spock uses a forcible mind-meld on her to get the names. Then Kirk asks for the location of the conference, so Spock digs deeper (which causes great distresses for them both). She doesn't know, so Kirk contacts Sulu, and he knows. Why didn't Captain Kirk or Spock just get in contact with Captain Sulu for those details?
     
  2. Pawleygirl

    Pawleygirl Ensign Red Shirt

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    One more question about TUC...When Uhura and crew were trying to speak in Klingon, shouldn't they have Klingon translation computers onboard the Enterprise by now, rather than thumbing through actual hardbound books?
     
  3. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Well that would make more sense, type into the computer what you want to say and have it translate it into Klingon for you to speak.
     
  4. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If someone in the room might know the answer to a question, you usually ask them first before picking up the phone to call someone else. Really a better question is, why did Sulu know where the conference was? He wasn't involved in any way and they wanted to keep the location secret supposedly.
     
  5. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Esp. when there is a lot of subspace static on that line. :p

    But more seriously with an enemy out looking for you, sending a trnasmission could disclose your location.
     
  6. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I always thought that a perfect translation would be more likely to tip off the person on the receiving end that something was up.

    As for the original question, maybe Excelsior ferried delegates to the conference. Which would be how Sulu knew where the conference was...
     
  7. Elder Knight

    Elder Knight Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Perhaps Kirk wasn't certain that Sulu would break the regulations?
     
  8. R. Star

    R. Star Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But in Flashback, Excelsior was trying to rescue Kirk and McCoy while they were held captive by the Klingons. Not much time for them to be ferrying diplomats.
     
  9. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Much like Threshold, Flashback is so bad I tend to ignore it. :lol:
     
  10. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    There is no outright reason why either Sulu or Valeris should be aware of where this top secret conference is going to be held. Supposedly, all three top schemers (Cartwright, Chang, Nanclus) would be involved in the conference and aware of its location - but Valeris would be out of the loop, isolated from her secret superiors ever since the ship left spacedock, and thus unable to contact them for details once the conference location was changed from Earth to Khitomer.

    On the other hand, Kirk is out of the loop, too. Perhaps everybody else in Starfleet already automatically knows this "secret" location, what with being part of organizing the event and all? But Kirk is no longer in Starfleet, not in practice. If he just contacted home base, the response to his question would be "Thank you for calling, now stand by to be arrested".

    So his best choice is to ask the resident traitor; his second best choice is to ask a Starfleet member he trusts not to betray him. Whether either of these actually is a likely keeper of the secret is sort of unimportant.

    As for the translation scene, the novelization IIRC offers the obvious explanation: Valeris, already known to have sabotaged the torpedo count computers, would have sabotaged the translator program as well, as a precaution to hinder Kirk in his possible attempts at contacting the Klingons and exposing the plot to Azetbuhr.

    The movie claims that use of the translator program would be "recognized" but doesn't explain how, so we're ready to invent our own reasons for why our heroes use physical books rather than computer databases.

    The penultimate script version, found at TrekCore (with Saavik still the traitor), omits all explanations as to why books are used, making it even easier to dream up explanations. Spock cutely just asks Uhura for "a feat of linguistic legerdemain", and the books apparently are it. Perhaps Starfleet just plain doesn't have translation programs for Klingonaase at this point of history: every encounter with Klingons involves the adversaries speaking English to their counterparts of captives, and other sources to the language are difficult to come by. So, all the Feds have is fragments and speculation, bound in books by competing scholars with competing ideas, and never amounting to a reliable translation program. The clumsy "subtitling" in ST:TMP might be a state of the art best guess, and might be completely incorrect...

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  11. SeerSGB

    SeerSGB Admiral Admiral

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    Maybe the UT speaks a "trade language" type of Klingon which is why the Klingons would catch on that it was a UT. Choppy, crappy, spoken, "proper" Klingon could come off as a smuggler or a trader trying to bullshit his/her way across the border and nothing to really worry to much about (it's a theory anyway).
     
  12. Unicron

    Unicron Continuity Spackle Moderator

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    As Timo says this was explained in the the novelization. The conspirators disabled the universal translator, forcing Uhura to use the actual textbooks for translation. The filmed version was an attempt to do a comedic scene, but it falls rather flat. It doesn't make sense to me that there would be a worry about the UT being "recognized" since there's no reason to assume the Klingons and other races wouldn't have their own equivalents.
     
  13. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    ^ What's weird is, the line of dialogue in the film which states that the UT would be recognized, is obviously an overdub. So why would they replace a perfectly logical explanation (Valeris erasing the UT's record of the Klingon language) with a STUPID one?
     
  14. USS Triumphant

    USS Triumphant Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Perhaps the UT could be recognized as *specifically Starfleet* because of a pattern in the word choices it would make. Perhaps they wanted a bad translation so the Klingons would think they were a smuggler ship.

    Or maybe it is completely idiotic to think that Uhura can't speak Klingon, and it was a dumb comedy bit.
     
  15. Armored Saint

    Armored Saint Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Of course, the Klingon chief of staff knows Shakespeare very well, but no one on board of the Enterprise-A can't speak Klingon.
     
  16. Jerikka Dawn

    Jerikka Dawn Commander Red Shirt

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    It was actually Spock, not Kirk, who ordered contact with Sulu to determine the location of the conference, which makes his pressing further into the mind meld even more of an oddity. He knew, while it was happening, that it wasn't very pleasant to either party, yet he also knew that he could break it off at any second and just call Sulu.
     
  17. Gil T.Azell

    Gil T.Azell Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Chekov explains it at 0:36 of this clip.
    [yt]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=avH2K1iR8Oo[/yt]
     
  18. Timo

    Timo Admiral Admiral

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    It doesn't appear likely that any of the people aboard would actually know how to speak Klingon. How many USN personnel spoke Russian during the Cold War? And that's a language they would have had available in libraries everywhere, rather than an alien one.

    In ST3, it's something of a plot point that Kirk doesn't know any Klingonese, and only manages to get Maltz to beam him up by imitating a phrase he overheard from Kruge...

    In was Archer, not Kirk, who had a linguist as part of the bridge crew. Well, and nuPike, too; apparently, nuKirk has one now as well.

    Timo Saloniemi
     
  19. RandyS

    RandyS Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Nichelle Nichols raised this very point with Nick Meyer, but he insisted they play the scene as filmed because he thought it would be funnier.

    For more info consult her book "Beyond Uhura".
     
  20. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I'd have to spend thirty cents on it and I'm just not comfortable making that kind of investment for Nichelle Nichols life story. :lol: