Discussion in 'Star Trek: Deep Space Nine' started by Hawkeye_90, Apr 18, 2009.
My bad I made a mistake I forgot he is a commander, thought he was a cap.
As it was, they ended up reshooting some of Brooks' scenes and had him lighten up a bit so they he wasn't quite as dark and moody.
The only reason he was a commander is because Piller wanted to make it distinctly different from TNG in as many ways as possible.
Commodore as a dialogue-mentioned rank survived through TOS and TAS to a final appearance in TMP. Rank pins for the lowest flag rank were still considered "Commodore" in the later TOS movies, not "Butt Admiral, Lower Cheeks", but this was no longer mentioned in dialogue - it was merely what the backstage folks were thinking at the time.
So we can't tell exactly when the rank of Commodore was abandoned in Starfleet. We can tell that the terminology has changed by the time of TNG's first season, thought. Not only will Picard become an Admiral of some sort due to his supposedly one-step promotion in "Coming of Age", but in "Conspiracy" we see that the first-season flag uniform indeed comes with a varying number of pips - either zero, one or two. This supposedly means that all those earlier seen Admirals without pips were of the lowest possible flag rank; and it was always called "Admiral", not "Commodore"...
Doesn't mean there wouldn't be Commodores in the TNG Starfleet. It merely means that those Commodores would be called "Admiral", the same as Rear Admirals, Vice Admirals, "full" Admirals and Grand Admirals.
...Oh, yes, Grand Admirals. After all, the title "Fleet Admiral" is already reserved for people in charge of Fleets, even when they wear the three pips of Vice Admiral, or perhaps the two of Rear Admiral. Another example of Star Trek putting a little twist to things - thanks to the writers, costumers or both not really knowing what they are doing.
They actually had Fleet Admirals in TNG, didn't they? The Admiral who told Picard to go to Romulus and find Spock was a Fleet Admiral, and Nechayev was promoted to Fleet Admiral after a few appearances.
Besides, actual military bases right now are sometimes commanded by lower ranks. I used to work near a U.S. Marine Corps base, and it had been commanded by colonels until just a couple of years before I moved there when the command went to a one-star general. It was commanded by a one-star from then until several years after I moved away, but it's commanded by a two-star general now. This stuff isn't as cast in stone as you might think. As a base rises in importance, the rank of the commanding officer can rise as well.
Mind you, I'm not sure the DS9 writers knew all this.
I've always felt the real difference between Starfleet and the way a real military works is in its command structure. It seems that in Starfleet, all frontline ships--regardless of size--are commanded by officers with the actual rank of captain, with brevet captains only commanding on a temporary or short-term basis, IMO.
Still, for an installation as big as DS9 with an initial mission to oversee the recovery of an entire world and it's eventual admission into the Federation, I think the post probably should have been a captain's billet--if not a rear admiral's--from the very start.
But "space station commander" probably had a better ring to it than "space station captain"...
It's never been outright stated, but the evidence seems to imply that Picard himself wasn't a Captain when he got his first command. This fits with modern day navies wherein you can command a vessel at the rank of Lt Cmdr, though it's a small vessel at that point in your ranking.
Larger vessels, like Ambassador and Galaxy class vessels would be the kind of things reserved for full Captains.
Three admirals were referred to as 'Fleet Admiral' in dialogue in TNG, however all 3 wore Vice Admiral insignia. No fleet admiral insignia were ever seen on screen in TNG. It is generally assumed that either the term 'fleet admiral' is a shortening of 'Starfleet admiral' in TNG era, refers to a position not a rank, or was simply a mistake in these cases.
Or maybe they just made a mistake in the costuming department. We know that Full Admirals would have 8 pips (4 on each side of the collar) like Riker in "All Good Things". So a Fleet Admiral should have 10.
...But since we have no other usage of "Fleet Admiral" in TNG or in any other Trek incarnation besides "A 3+3 pip Admiral who commands a specific Fleet", we might just as well go for the idea that Fleet Admiral is a title rather than a rank.
After all, we do have verbal confirmation that Vice Admiral exists as a rank (although curiously enough, we only hear this once IIRC, in "Inter Arma Enim Silet Leges", referring to an offscreen character whose pips we can't count). It would be a bit convoluted to reshuffle Vice Admiral into something else besides 3+3 pips, so I prefer reshuffling Fleet Admiral instead. In real naval tradition, Fleet Admiral is a relatively unusual occurrence after all, and thus IMHO easier to reassign...
Wholeheartedly agreed. I loved Sisko the underestimated underdog, Sisko who-doesn't-give-a-damn-what-his-rank-is-because-he-has-a-job-to-do-and by-God-he's-going-to-do-it-no-matter-what.
FWIW, I'd cite the Phase II draft of 'In Thy Image' as original-intent evidence that Starfleet gave command of lesser starships to commanders as practice. Commander Decker was yanked from command of the Boston - a light cruise - to XO Enterprise. The captain of the light cruiser Aswan is only referred to as Captain, yet the commanding officer of the similar Delphi is referred to as Captain in title, yet in rank as Commander. It is therefore my contention that at least as far as the TOS era was concerned, only the mighty Starships warranted full rank Captains. Indeed, perhaps Kirk's first command of a 'destroyer' referenced in the writer's guide and 'TMoST' was as a commander, but it was not until he was posted to Enterprise that he gained his full captain's rank? Perhaps then all the 'youngest captain in the fleet' business referred to Kirk's position on that destroyer, not his achievement of the rank of Captain. That might throw a few kinks in a few chronologies...
It's rather interesting, then, that IIRC Sisko was a Lieutenant Commander when he was the Saratoga's XO. If we hadn't seen his skipper's pips, it might have been convenient to assume he was a Commander.
Based on onscreen evidence, we might conclude that whether a ship/station gets a Commander or a Captain depends on the nature and importance of the mission.
Riker was offered the command of the "Hood" but chose instead to be the Ent-D's XO. Would he have been a Commander but commanding a ship (it was Excelsior class, a bit old by then), or would it have entailed a full on promotion?
Actually, we don't know if there are two Rear Admiral ranks (lower half, upper half) in Starfleet. I like to think that a captain in temporary charge of a fleet gets the billet of a commodore, which I would establish as four silver pips in a silver box, but just on one side of the collar. Upon completion of the assignment, he/she reverts to his/her original rank of captain.
That way, rear admiral would be one pip in a box, vice admiral two pips in a box, admiral three pips in a box, and fleet admiral four pips in box, with all the pips golden in golden boxes on either side of the collar.
Also, the only time we hear of the rank commodore is when Geordi keeps calling the Romulan who captured him in The Enemy by that rank, and I got the distinct impression he was being sarcastic, that is, calling him by an out-of-use title.
Actually, Riker was first officer of the Hood, and before being posted as first officer of Enterprise, was offered command of the Drake, which went to Paul Rice, as we discovered in The Arsenal of Freedom. We saw that Rice was a full captain, so Riker probably would have been a full captain too. And as we saw in Tin Man, his old c.o., Captain DeSoto, was a full captain, as well.
As for Sisko's original rank of Commander, it made sense to me that he'd have a lower rank to command a dilapidated space station. Probably his status as Emissary prevented Starfleet from assigning a more experienced, higher-ranking officer to take charge once the station became more important due to the discovery of the wormhole.
sisko was same rank as riker than promoted to captain later
Actually, I think once you reach the Admiral level you get pips on both sides of the collar. A lower rear would have two pips in the box, one on each side of the collar. Riker was a full Admiral in AGT and he had 8 pips, 4 on each side.
I'm considering bringing up TOS's fleet captain, rank... nah, better not.
Actually there is very little evidence that there is a rank called "Fleet Captain" with distinctive striping, since we never saw the uniform of such an officer.
About all we have is Kirk saying (about Pike) "We met when he was promoted to fleet captain", but that could mean anything. Perhaps they met when Pike went from Commander to Captain, and thus 'fleet captain' is just a fancy way of saying Captain.
True, that's why I said at the end of my sentence, "all the pips golden in golden boxes on either side of the collar," meant to refer to all the admiral ranks. Should have been clearer. -- RR
An interesting scheme - however, Starfleet rear admirals were shown to have two pips in boxes on either side, so the one-pip version is probably a lower half/commodore rank.
I wonder if Spacedock-style facilities are commanded by sub-flag officers?
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