"Wolf in the Fold": Y u no Vulcan mind meld?

Discussion in 'Star Trek - The Original & Animated Series' started by ixfd64, Sep 18, 2013.

  1. ixfd64

    ixfd64 Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    In the episode "Wolf in the Fold," Scotty is accused of three murders but claims to not remember a single thing. It seems the most [Spock]logical[/Spock] response would have been for Spock to perform a Vulcan mind meld. However, this did not happen.

    The writers probably did this to prevent the story from ending in five minutes, but is there any canonical explanation as to why Spock did not do a Vulcan mind meld?
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    I think that the meld was something Spock preferred not to use unless there was no other choice, because it's very private and intense and all that. Here, they had the psychotricorder and the magic lie-detecting chair to attempt first, so maybe the situation never got to the point where mind-melding was necessary.

    Also, Scotty was recovering from a head injury, so maybe the meld would've been too stressful on his healing brain or something.

    Me, I'm more inclined to wonder why we never saw psychotricorders again, and why lie-detecting chair technology disappeared after TOS.
     
  3. The Old Mixer

    The Old Mixer Clean Old Mod Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2002
    Location:
    Somewhere in Connecticut
    IIRC, they were trying to use methods that were admissible under the local laws. The VMM might not have qualified.
     
  4. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2001
    Yes, I'm inclined to agree with The Old Mixer. Why would the local authorities give any credence to any claims by Scotty's colleagues that he didn't do it?
     
  5. ixfd64

    ixfd64 Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2012
    Yeah, that makes sense - just like how people generally won't trust police when they investigate themselves.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    That's a much better explanation than mine. Wow, this isn't my day.
     
  7. Ssosmcin

    Ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2002
    Location:
    ssosmcin
    The lie detector chair would have been very useful in Court Martial and Turnabout Intruder, eh?
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    ^And TNG's "A Matter of Perspective." And probably a bunch of others.

    But then, a lot of 23rd-century technology seems to have been lost by the 24th, such as seat restraints, security armor, self-heating uniforms ("Spock's Brain"), cures for insanity ("Whom Gods Destroy"), etc.
     
  9. ZapBrannigan

    ZapBrannigan Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2013
    Location:
    New York State
    The Vulcan mind meld started out as a "terrible lowering of personal barriers" and gradually got cheapened, for lack of a better word, as Spock became desensitized.

    The same thing can happen with swearing obscenely, being naked in public, you name it: under the right circumstances, people can be re-conditioned and desensitized into doing almost anything as if it were normal behavior.

    Regarding Turnabout Intruder and Whom Gods Destroy, those "spot the real captain" situations are frustrating because Spock could end it very easily. He could simply say: "The captain and I had a working breakfast on Tuesday morning. What did you have to eat, and what did Mr. Scott want to talk about?"
     
  10. Ssosmcin

    Ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2002
    Location:
    ssosmcin
    Even Spock accepting the defense for the "Cochrane Deceleration" was ridiculous because while it may be a "classic battle maneuver," there was no guarantee Kirk used it. And, IIRC, going by the position of the guy who attacked Spock, it was Kirk who missed the question. Which may have simply been a director error, if I'm not misremembering. Either way, this situation was too easy to resolve realistically.
     
  11. BoredShipCapt'n

    BoredShipCapt'n Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    a sonic shower
    It wasn't even given credence by Scotty in Turnabout Intruder.
     
  12. Ssosmcin

    Ssosmcin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2002
    Location:
    ssosmcin
    They also couldn't settle on a name for it until pretty late in the game. It was "an ancient Vulcan technique," "the Vulcan technique of the joining of two minds," "the Vulcan mind probe," "the Vulcan mind fusion," "the mind touch," "the Mind Meld," which was finally coined in Specter of the Gun, and then "Telepathic communication with the mind of Captain James T. Kirk." I mean, jeez, I guess they used "meld" after the series because it was alliterative and sounded good.
     
  13. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2004
    Location:
    Oxford, PA
    And in The Search for Spock, Admiral Morrow is pretty dismissive of what he terms "Vulcan mysticism."

    Depending on your POV view, it's like a psychic testifying in court.

    Except, of course, that in Star Trek psychics actually exist! :)
     
  14. MikeS

    MikeS Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2008
    Location:
    Liverpool, UK
    There is precedent for that though. For example in the twentieth century one could fly across the Atlantic at supersonic speeds onboard Concorde, now we have to settle for the slow route. And I believe America once had the ability to put men into space...
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    ^Yeah, but seatbelts?
     
  16. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2001
    Yeah, but can they testify in court?

    This question raises a host of other questions! Would Vulcan mind melds be admissible in court, even in the Federation? If so, what are the standards for admission? Does the meld have to take place after a warrant is properly issued?
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    My impression is that they generally can't, though I'm not sure whether my basis for that is something from canon or something from tie-in literature.
     
  18. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk The Real Me Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2001
    Location:
    Down in the tube station at midnight
    Sybo was allowed to use her empathic abilities during Scotty's "trial", so I doubt the Argelians would object to a mind meld.
     
  19. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2001
    Just because they let one kind of "psychic" in doesn't mean they'd let all psychics in. They likely understand their own psychics, but may not believe or understand the Vulcan mind meld. Besides, what else would Spock say? Of course he'd end up saying "Mr. Scott did not commit the murders", because he's a friend and colleague of Scotty. Why should they believe Spock's claim of Scott's innocence? Just because he touched Scotty's face and winced a bit? How are the Argelians to know that something psychic really happened?
     
  20. BoredShipCapt'n

    BoredShipCapt'n Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 5, 2012
    Location:
    a sonic shower
    Starfleet probably did away with seatbelts just before adopting their new recruiting slogan "Are you ready to roll?"