Litverse & Star Trek '09

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Christopher, Apr 27, 2017.

  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Why Moscow? Again, the Romulans are very, very far from being the biggest alien power in the Trek universe. Qo'noS would be Moscow. Maybe Cardassia would be Beijing. Romulus would be, I dunno, Tehran.

    I just don't get why people keep assuming Romulus must be the center of all things when it never, ever was before. Keep in mind that, for the vast majority of the Federation's history, the Romulans were completely isolationist -- from 2160-2266 and from 2311-2364. So in the Federation's entire history from 2161 to 2387, the Romulans have been a complete non-factor in galactic politics for fully 70 percent of the Federation's history -- and a fairly minor factor for most of the other 30 percent, at least compared to the Klingons, the Cardassians, the Dominion, etc. Why, then, is it so impossible to imagine that we could go on telling Star Trek stories that weren't about the Romulans?

    Also, why assume that I'm talking about the time period immediately after the supernova? The question is how Trek stories could be told beyond 2387. That's quite a large span of time. Maybe there could be a time jump of a couple of years, long enough to believe that the immediate aftermath has been dealt with and other matters have come to dominate the Federation's attention.


    I didn't say it was credible. I just said it's doable if there's no other choice. This is how licensed fiction works. If you want the freedom to do whatever you think is best, then you write original fiction, or at least fan fiction. Tie-in writing is work for hire. We're contracted and paid to work within the limits our employers set for us. We don't get paid if we just complain that it can't be done -- so we figure out a way to do it.

    It isn't credible that TNG seasons 1-3 never mentioned the Cardassian war that was retroactively established as going on in that period, but it happened anyway. And Trek has dozens of entire species that were treated as major for all of one episode and then never mentioned again. We just have to keep in mind that an interstellar stage is far, far vaster than a planetary stage, with hundreds of times as many civilizations and events going on simultaneously, and each series can only focus on a small part of the whole. It would be impossible to keep track of absolutely everything -- so it's just a matter of being selective about which stories you tell.

    I've always believed that there's a ton of important stuff going on in and around the Federation that we never get to see. It would make no sense for only one or two starship crews out of the entire fleet to be having high-stakes adventures and saving the Federation from mortal threats. You could probably pick out any given starship and get a whole series about its adventures. But we can only focus on a few at a time. So what we see of the Trek universe is a small cross-section, not an exhaustive overview.


    The problem there is the assumption that the supernova's destructive energies propagated faster than light, which is absurd. I suppose there's precedent, with the Praxis blast wave in TUC and the instantaneous gravitational effects of the supernovae Soran set off in Generations, but I'd prefer to think that Hobus just happened to be an unusually close neighbor to Romulus and Remus's primary star.
     
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  2. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Destruction which quite conveniently, and just oh so coincidentally happens to end just as it reaches the edge of Federation space....
    Yep, that's my head-canon too...
     
  3. woodstock

    woodstock Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    The concern is how it would effect the geopolitical status of the quadrant. Whether or not the Romulans are used a lot in the shows, movies and books, they are a major player and the destruction of their homeworld is a significant event. That being said, as Mr Bennett said they are generally an isolationist society and something like this could certainly cause them to go that route again. The Klingons however, might (and should) see this as an opportunity to finally deal with a long time mortal enemy and go in and conquer them in their weakened state.

    Only alluding to what happened is certainly do-able, and I think the writers would find it challenging and fun to drop little tidbits into their stories of the Romulus' destruction and its impact without directly talking about it, I would certainly enjoy reading them. When the "impending catastrophe" to the Romulans came up in Control, it made my amygdala light up. And when they do come up in future stories, it will be like, "this is what we all talked about."
     
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2017
  4. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's explicitly described as FTL in The Needs of the Many.
     
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  5. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    From what I understand both the Onlineverse and the Litverse both went their separate ways after Nemesis? In which case what's established in Needs of the Many might not necessarily apply to the relaunch?
     
  6. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    That's entirely true. Just pointing out that one tie-in already published didn't think an FTL supernova was so absurd.
     
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  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Or just didn't question the absurdity. Obviously it is objectively absurd to have the effects traveling faster than light, even if there is Trek-universe precedent for it. There are some inescapable absurdities in the Trek universe; I just wish there weren't so many of them.
     
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  8. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Even if Hobus was just the next star system, it would still take years to reach Romulus at light speed anyway. It HAS to be FTL to fit the timeframe, so there can't not be any absurdity, but at least it can be limited.
     
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  9. 20fridge

    20fridge Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I was always confused as to why they created Hobus rather than just having Romulus' star go nova.

    That said, STO used the absurdity of a supernova's effects spreading at FTL speeds as a plot point suggesting that it wasn't a natural phenomenon. Later the game revealed that
    the Iconians were behind the destruction of Hobus and they used a weapon which caused the explosion to propagate through subspace.
    I thought the STO explanation was consistent with the sort of things seen in cannon.
     
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  10. Jinn

    Jinn Mistress of the Chaotic Energies Rear Admiral

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    I guess the Romulans would have had to see a huge event like their own star going nova coming a loong time in advance.
     
  11. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It still stretches credibility to the scope of the damage radius, but I'll get behind it as to how it travelled FTL.
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I did say "an unusually close neighbor." Yes, on the average, adjacent stars are a few light years apart, but there are certainly cases where the separation is as little as a few light-months, even when two stars are not part of a binary system. It's not common, but it's certainly physically possible and does occur in the real universe, neither of which is true of faster-than-light radiation.

    And we don't actually know what the time frame was. All that Spock Prime said in the movie was, "The star went supernova, consuming everything in its path. I promised the Romulans that I would save their planet. We outfitted our fastest ship.... I was en route when the unthinkable happened. The supernova destroyed Romulus." There's no reason that couldn't be summarizing a set of events that covered months. Yes, the ship was fast, but we don't know how long it took them to develop the plan, negotiate for the Romulans' permission, and synthesize enough red matter.

    Of course, there's one incurable absurdity, which is the idea that creating a black hole at the center of the supernova could somehow negate the radiation that had already traveled out into space. Heck, many supernovae collapse into black holes naturally, but their expelled matter and radiation are already well on their way outward at that point and can't be sucked back. So really, the whole concept was complete nonsense, and I really wish the filmmakers had put some effort into coming up with something at least remotely plausible instead of the gibberish we got.
     
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  13. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    But surely if it wasn't travelling FTL, especially on the vast scale given on the map, surely Romulus would have had time to anticipate and deal with the threat?
     
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  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The map is not canonical. It's pure conjecture. I quoted everything the movie actually said about the supernova, which is really very little. We know Spock Prime said the supernova endangered the entire galaxy -- conceivable if it were a hypernova, though somewhat hyperbolic even in that case -- but we have no proof that it actually destroyed anything other than Romulus.

    It would take years to evacuate an entire planet, even -- and perhaps especially -- the capital world of an interstellar empire. With only months to react, it wouldn't be possible to evacuate in time.

    Anyway, as I said, the premise as presented is completely impossible and ridiculous. If I can offer something that's just somewhat implausible, that's still a huge step upward.
     
  15. MadeIndescribable

    MadeIndescribable Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I get that the map isn't canonical (and not part of my head canon), but did come from an "official" source, so presumably was designed with some insight and will be followed by some fans?

    Fair enough point about a planetary evacuation, but long enough for Nero to rescue his wife, surely?
     
  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I'm not trying to be consistent with an existing interpretation here. My whole purpose is to explore a possible alternative way of interpreting the limited canonical information we have. Hypothetically speaking, as a thought experiment and a creative exercise, is there a way of rationalizing the supernova that actually comes close to making some remote semblance of scientific sense? I'm just interested in exploring that question.


    One more time: Yes, it's implausible, but the existing version is complete and utter gibberish. No matter how many logic holes you poke in my interpretation, they don't even come close to the sheer nonsense of the movie's version.
     
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  17. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    Didn't the STO writing team come up with the name Hobus? It isn't named in the movie, and I don't recall if it is named in Countdown.

    Are there any non-Novel/Comic/game sources (like BTS info from the writers) that places the supernova outside of the Romulus system?
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The movie itself does that. Spock's account indicates that there was time between the supernova and Romulus's destruction for him to promise the Romulans help, arrange for the red matter, and launch the Jellyfish. That must've been a matter of days at least. The only way the supernova star could be within the same system is if it was a wide binary system with Romulus and Remus around the smaller, main-sequence member of the pair. It can't have been Romulus's own primary star, or the planet would've been destroyed within minutes.
     
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  19. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    Ah alright, I had forgotten about that.
     
  20. King Daniel Beyond

    King Daniel Beyond Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The mind-meld sequence in ST'09 was the last thing to be finished on the film (I think JJ put the finishing touches to it 2 weeks prior to the movie's release). As scripted here (and I'm not sure if this is the shooting script), it's very different: Spock's and Nero's time travel is deliberate when Spock creates a second black hole after stopping the supernova, with the aim being to save Romulus.

    162 EXT. SPACE - NIGHT
    A SUPERNOVA. An EXPLODING STAR, like a LIGHT, EATING AWAY AT ALL AROUND IT --

    SPOCK PRIME (V.O.)
    A star in Beta Quadrant will go supernova
    -- and like a cancer left untreated... it
    will grow... and destroy everything.
    VULCAN SCIENCE ACADEMY 162A
    Now we're seeing VULCAN SCIENCE ACADEMY -- where SIX VULCAN SCIENTISTS study a HOLOGRAM of this event -- the star's ORIGIN, its PATH OF DESTRUCTION -- and SPOCK PRIME is among them --

    SPOCK PRIME (V.O.)
    I saw the beginning of it myself. Vulcan
    Science Academy devised a plan to stop
    it.