Why no Sela in 'Nemesis'?

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by dswynne1, May 17, 2014.

  1. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If the above quote is your evidence that "good connections to TPTB can outweigh rank and performance," then I respectfully say that that's entirely conjectural speculation on your part. The way I read that quote, all it says is that Decius may get someone to enact retribution on the commander for reducing him in rank. It doesn't say anything about said friends helping him to rise up in rank.

    And that's also speculation on your part, as there was no evidence whatsoever that Sela got her position because of her father's influence. All she said was that he was influential enough to save Tasha from death.
     
  2. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Given the lack of information, clues, hints or suggestions by canon regarding Romulan Society it doesn't.

    BoT suggests that good connections outweigh age, rank and accomplishment (the whole scene is somewhat reminiscent of the situation aboard the HMS Defiant in "Damn the Defiant", where a younger officer poses a threat to an accomplished captain).

    If anything, "Redemption II" re-emphasized that in the Romulan military you can climb the career ladder faster if you know the right people.

    That's what I'd call continuity, not implausibility. ;)

    Bob
     
  3. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^Then you either ignored or didn't read my post directly above yours. If you just ignored it, then I have nothing more to say to you on the matter. If you just didn't read it, please do.
     
  4. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Admiral Admiral

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    Not even remotely in this story. As I said in the rest of my post, Picard's nemesis here was himself (in the cloned form of Shinzon).
     
  5. The Colonel

    The Colonel Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I'm not sure if I would have wanted Sela to make a comeback, especially as the main villain. Tying the story to something from the series would have been nice though, maybe to the events of "Unification". Nemesis wasted the opportunity to explore Romulan society further and pose some interesting moral questions about the status of the Remans.

    One thing I've never understood about the TNG films is why they tried to aim for a general audience by trying to turn Picard and company into cliche action heroes fighting some villain. TNG was never really done justice on the big screen because of this. The most financially successful Star Trek film before ST:09 was the Voyage Home which didn't even have a villain or a single action scene. TNG as a TV series was slow and cerebral, full of people sitting around conference tables and spouting expository dialogue or discussing weighty moral issues.

    The TNG films were niche productions with modest budgets and the only real audience were Star Trek fans. They just had to keep making Paramount money. They weren't 100 million dollar spectacles like the JJ films that had enormous pressure to reach the widest audience possible.
     
  6. Crazy Eddie

    Crazy Eddie Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The ability to punish somebody for demoting you -- especially if you got demoted for doing something careless -- implies the ability to punish someone for failing (or even hesitating) to promote you. This is actually a rather common problem in some businesses, where the boss' son/daughter/nephew lands a promotion he is in no way qualified for, not necessarily because the boss is pulling for him, but because the managers of that department are afraid of incurring the boss' wrath. This is even more true in corporate cultures where the boss' wrath is relatively easy to incur and department managers are prone to just roll over and let His Incompetent Progeny get away with bloody murder.

    In a militaristic and highly competitive society like the Romulan Empire, Decius' "friends" are extremely likely to lose their shit over their buddy having a spat with his CO. The same danger you face by demoting him is the inherent danger in passing him over for promotion or giving him the most important assignment all the time so he can get promoted that much faster.

    He saved the ENTIRE CREW from death in exchange for Tasha's ass. That pretty much makes him a bigshot. We also see a similar situation later where a Romulan general is presiding over a camp of Klingon prisoners which he has made his own personal colony; he, too, is indicated to be kind of a bigshot for the Romulans to let that slide.

    Actually, when you combine that with Saavik's putative half-Romulan heritage (plus her relatively young age) and a few other tales of Romulan atrocities, one wonders if the kidnapping and breeding of alien women isn't a pretty standard practice in the Imperium. It might just be a "spoils of war" thing, in which case Sela would be a high-ranking soldier mainly because the Empire would not have allowed her to ever grow up to be anything else: she's a child of an alien captive, which means she MUST be raised from birth to be a soldier, would have been trained in a military school since she was old enough to walk, would have had her first instruction in military history in grammar school. She'd be Romulan Hitler-Youth; by the time she's 21, she'll already have a pretty extensive career behind her.

    That's still more speculation, of course, but with how little we actually know about them, what else can we do?:rommie:
     
  7. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But again, nobody outright mentioned anything about Decius getting promoted, just that he had friends that were "powerful" enough to possibly strike back at the commander in some unknown way as retribution.

    And how many of the entire crew were left? Five people? Ten? Who knows?

    The impression I got was that that particular commander was forced to maintain the colony or the prisoners would have been killed, and that he was doing it as a humanitarian gesture at the expense of his own career. That's coming more from a position of exasperation than power.

    I'd like to point out that not only has it never been canonically established that Saavik is half-Romulan, but that even if those lines of dialogue stating that stayed in TWOK, there was no context to it. For all we know one of Saavik's parents was simply a defector who sought sanctuary on Vulcan and got married to a native.
     
  8. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Well, the issue was that Decius himself and without asking his superior had sent a message to inform the Praetor (!) about their "glorious mission", so it's safe to assume Decius wanted to be the bringer of good news hoping it would improve his career.

    CENTURION: Take care, Commander. He has friends, and friends of his kind mean power. And power is danger.

    Sounded to me like political power.

    While we do not know how many crew members of the Enterprise-C did survive, Sela's father must have already been quite a bigshot in 2344 if he was able to snatch Tasha - in her uniform from the future - from the Tal Shiar. :eek:

    (Come to think of it, Sela's account "They were all to have been executed after the interrogation, but a Romulan general saw her and became enamoured with her" suggests that the Romulans found nothing unusual about Tasha's uniform which just fits nicely with the alternate canon interpretation I presented based on "Redemption II" :rolleyes:).

    Well, Vonda McIntyre's novelization was based on the original script or last draft of it and this one stated that Saavik had been imprisoned and mistreated by Romulans.

    All that may not be canonically established, but it's the explanation why Saavik cries at the end of the film which you wouldn't expect from a properly trained and educated pure-blooded Vulcan woman.

    Bob
     
  9. borgboy

    borgboy Commodore Commodore

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    Saavik's backstory as a Romulan/Vulcan hybrid from a Romulan breeding experiment camp is so well explored in the novelizations, original novels, comics...it may be official canon, but it's my canon.
    I would've loved for Sela to have been in Nemesis. I could imagine her in the role of mentor to Shizon, and/or possibly his wife too. Sela is one of the most important Romulan characters in ST history, and her presence in Nemesis would've enhanced the story for me.
     
  10. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    But again, that's just your interpretation. Not saying there's anything wrong with that feeling, but the meaning of that line can be taken numerous ways and shouldn't be used as absolute proof about how Romulans rise in rank.

    The Tal Shiar? When was the Tal Shiar mentioned as having anything to do with this? And how would the Romulans automatically know Tasha's uniform was from the future unless she specifically told them where she came from? And if she did, I doubt that the Romulans would have let her be Sela's daddy's concubine or whatever the hell she was. Had they known she was from the future they would have interrogated her for the rest of her (short) life.

    In the context of the film, that still has nothing to do with the possibility that she was from some Romulan/Vulcan breeding program, just that she's a young and inexperienced Vulcan/Starfleet officer. Her results from the Kobayashi Maru exercise attests to that. Just saying.

    And that's fine. But since none of that made it into the films, and Saavik seemed later to be nothing more than a full-blooded Vulcan, then in the realm of personal canon it remains.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2014
  11. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Because it's safe to assume that the Romulans have intel on Starfleet uniforms ca. 2344 and eyes to see? :rolleyes:

    [​IMG]

    In my original treatise I also mentioned a couple of possible explanations:
    • There was nothing to worry about because when the Enterprise-C crossed the threshold her “universe at war” uniform somehow transformed into a uniform of 2344
    • Tasha realized that fatal oversight prior to crossing the threshold, got undressed, grabbed Castillo’s phaser and vaporized her uniform and combadge (they were still about to engage the Romulans, not the Ferengi). [Although this image does exist in our reality, I guess it would be inappropriate to illustrate it here] Tasha’s daughter Sela would later state “a Romulan general saw her and became enamoured with her”. No more questions. :alienblush:
    • The Romulans didn’t care and just thought that Tasha Yar had a fancy tailor
    • … maybe the other Picard should have been listening to the other Riker, his own instincts (“Every instinct tells me this is wrong, it is dangerous, it is futile”) and Igor Novikov instead of Guinan… :evil:
    • This Enterprise-C went back in time, but got diverted into a similar parallel universe “at war” where it got destroyed but where its actions saved a lot of people so that in total the war in that parallel universe cost less than 40 billion lives and La Forge and Guinan could have a nice conversation about Tasha at the end of a day (while the scene apparently takes place in “our” universe, Geordi’s “universe at war” sleeves retain an interesting touch of ambiguity)
    Another explanation would be that the Romulan general who became "enamoured with Tasha" was the head of the Tal-Shiar and/or became actually enamoured with Tasha's fancy uniform. ;)

    :brickwall: That's exactly what I was trying to communicate in my treatise all along:

    "I think that the idea of a Romulan general simply taking Tasha under his wing and away from the Tal Shiar (in “our” universe) rather sounds like a fairy-tale than an authentic story. Tasha’s return to our universe must have been meticulously prepared to provide her with a cover that wouldn’t blow the minute the first survivor was interrogated and none of what we saw in “Yesterday’s Enterprise” did remotely suggest that."

    Unfortunately you and a few others were so eager to discredit my treatise that you apparently didn't read what I had to say. But now you agree on one of the major points - Interesting! :rolleyes:

    Bob
     
  12. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    The Tal Shiar can't see into the future. They would have no idea that the uniform Tasha was wearing came from twenty years in the future. They would just have assumed that it was some other type of uniform they'd never seen before, or off-duty attire. If you went aboard a Navy ship and saw someone wearing a uniform you were unfamiliar with, would you automatically assume he was from the future too?

    No one was trying to discredit your opinions; rather, the discredit was coming from your assertions that your opinions were actually facts. But I'm not about to go down that road with you again, so suffice it to say that there's a much simpler explanation: Tasha never told the Romulans she was from the future, for the very reason that if she did, she'd have figured they would have interrogated her and gotten all kinds of knowledge about the future. So instead she kept her mouth shut and was just another survivor of the Ent-C that some guy thought was hot and wanted for his own.
     
  13. BillJ

    BillJ Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Why? She came across as a bumbling idiot to me.
     
  14. M-Red

    M-Red Commander Red Shirt

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    If Nemesis could have been worse, Sela would have been part of it somehow.
     
  15. dswynne1

    dswynne1 Commander Red Shirt

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    That's why good direction and an important production staff is just as important as the caliber of acting talent. I mean, case in point: "Star Trek: The Voyage Home" vs. "Star Trek: The Final Frontier". Both Shatner and Nemoy are fine actors, but how their respective films were produced and directed spoke volumes as to the quality of the final product. But let's look at "Star Trek: Nemesis". Good actors, lousy direction, mediocre film. This is not to say that Denise Crosby would have stood out, if you had an A-list director and producer at the helm, but you can't simply say that her portrayal of Sela would have made "Nemesis" worse. Too many variables at work, IMO...
     
  16. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    That's a simple explanation that fails to take a look at the bigger picture or context:
    • Captain Garrett discussed with her surviving crew whether they should go back in time or not, so regardless how many survivors were captured next to Tasha they knew they had been to the future
    • From a Romulan point of view the Enterprise-C just vanished without leaving a trace. Although we don't know what happened when she instantly returned from the future (sudden head-on collision course? visible forming of the temporal rift?), the Romulans would have noticed that her power readings (she had been repaired and recharged in the future) were noticably better than before. In simpler words: The Romulans faced a (technological) mystery they surely would have wanted to investigate and took captives (what they supposedly and usually don't do)
    • The survivors were interrogated and we've seen how the Romulans have mastered interrogation and manipulation techniques in "The Mind's Eye". Though we do not know what devices they had in 2344, the Klingon Mind-Sifter from "Errand of Mercy" to "record every bit of knowledge in a man's mind" already existed a 100 years earlier, so it stands to reason that the Romulans of 2344 had devices more than adequate
    • The Romulans would have learned that the Enterprise-C had returned from the future. And that was it? Surely they would have tried to find out, whether they had brought back technology or even people and like it or not - Tasha stood out like a sore thumb. None of the survivors could have possibly known her biography, neither did she know any biographies of the crew members of the "C".
    In summary, to seriously assume that Tasha was not meticulously interrogated (despite her strange uniform) is either wishful-thinking or a case of utter Romulan incompetence.
    Like I stated at the end of my treatise thread, it appeared that both Ron Moore and David Carson were aware of the problem, elegantly relocated "Yesterday's Enterprise" into a "parallel universe" (Carson) and had Sela's mother come from yet another parallel universe where she had been actually ordered and "sent" by another Picard (who is "responsible" for the whole Situation).

    Tasha's depature in this other parallel universe, however, was "meticulously prepared to provide her with a cover that wouldn’t blow the minute the first survivor was interrogated".

    And Sela's account seems to confirm this: "They were all to have been executed after the interrogation, but [then] a Romulan general saw her and became enamoured with her."

    So whatever cover Tasha had been provided with, it held, and had that Romulan General not showed up she probably would have been executed with the other survivors.

    Bob
     
  17. Mytran

    Mytran Commodore Commodore

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    I can't help but agree that all the Enterprise-C crewmembers would have been interrogated for every bit of useful information before they were given the stay of execution - the Romulans are just too expert in their field to believe otherwise.

    Even if we are dealing with (another) alternate Tasha who went on to be the mother of Sela, that would not change the fact that she was from the future (albeit an alternate one). Would she not have been wrung dry of information as well? The saving grace of course is that her future info was from a very different future, one distorted by twenty years of war.

    As long as Tasha actually was fully interrogated by the Romulans first, I suppose I can accept her slipping into bed with the General in order to save her crewmates. From a Romulan (or Tal Shiar) perspective, once they knew everything she did, what would be the point in keeping her in custody?
     
  18. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Not necessarily. We really have no idea of Tasha's circumstances after she went back with the Ent-C. For all we know, when the C was destroyed and the survivors were taken prisoner, Tasha in her yellow pajamas could have been mistaken for a civilian and therefore would have had no useful information. Or perhaps Sela's father sheltered her from the Romulan interrogators precisely because he was powerful enough to do so. Heck, we don't even know if the attack on Narendra III was even authorized by the Romulan government. They could have just been renegades like Kruge and Klaa, blowing shit up for the hell of it. We simply don't know, other than Sela's account when she was a little girl which was obviously biased toward the Romulans.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2014
  19. Robert Comsol

    Robert Comsol Commodore Commodore

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    Hopefully she had time to remove her rank pips and combadge (something she should have done before entering the transporter chamber of the Enterprise-D). :rolleyes:

    And somehow I can't possibly imagine Tasha boarding an escape pod because the mission was to fight to the last breath. It's rather likely that the remaining Bridge crew (senior officers) were beamed aboard one of the warbirds for interrogation once the shields had collapsed and prior to the "C"s inevitable destruction. Thus, especially a cilivian on the Bridge would have aroused suspicion.

    According to Sela's account they had already been rounded up for execution before Sela's father intervened. Two possibilities:
    • Part of the cover provided for this Tasha had been to put her in a cadet's uniform not to attract unduly attention (this is my canon interpretation based on the "Redemption II" premise change), so Sela's account is correct.
    • She merely retells the story she had learned from her father who was a Tal Shiar General and which isn't exactly correct, i.e. her father noticed there was something strange about Tasha but ignored this because he fell in love with her. Thus, Sela is under the impression that her father told her the true story but actually he covered his ass (because if it got public that he took a person from the future with vital information as his concubine, he could face himself an execution for high treason). ;)
    Anyway, the latter explanation would still support the theory that Tasha's father was a real bigshot and thus had means to advance her career - which has been the core issue of the current discussion.

    Bob
     
  20. Dukhat

    Dukhat Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^Again, as I said we have no way of knowing the circumstances after the Ent-C returned to the battle. All we have is Sela's account, which (according to her) happened when she was a little girl. And I wouldn't trust Sela as far as I could throw her.

    Again, I don't recall Sela saying her father was in the Tal Shiar.
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2014