The Aenar - Not believable?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Enterprise' started by MarkusTay, Jul 12, 2022.

  1. MarkusTay

    MarkusTay Commander Red Shirt

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    There's certainly a lot of weirdness regarding the Andorians, and despite being one of the coolest races the TOS created, it received very little love for years. I like the treatment it gets now, and how Enterprise fleshed them out more, I also like how they evolved on a moon rather than a standard, M-class planet. So much sets them apart from everyone else.

    But... I find the existence of the Aenar completely unbelievable. Or rather, they way their existence is explained. So a race that has advanced tech and can see what sort of beings are on starships lightyears away don't know about another intelligent species living on the same, small moon as them? In what universe does any of that make sense? The Romulans knew, but the people who lived there didn't? That just makes the already shark-jumping plot-point even more ridiculous (jumping the space-shark?)

    Don't get me wrong - I love Trek, I love Enterprise (perhaps my second favorite Trek), and I love the Andorians & the Aenar... but the writers really dropped the ball with this one. It would have been SO easy to say they were descendants of an early expedition to a planet in their system (or another nearby moon) who crashed but managed to survive for many centuries in isolation. But nope - they are just this group of intelligent beings no-one else on a high-tech planet ever noticed was there (and there were even myths about them!!! How many people on Earth have gone looking for Bigfoot? No-one EVER bother to CHECK?)

    Kind of a rant, so sorry, but I just feel there is so much good lore created around the Andorians, and then they did that. Its like someone took a gourmet bowl of soup and spit in it just before handing it to you. I am sure it still the delicious, but... eeewww.
     
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  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Who says it's small? It's a moon of a giant planet. An exomoon would have to be comparable in size to a terrestrial planet in order to support humanoid life.

    And they did know about them, but they were considered a myth. That's not unbelievable at all; there are still uncontacted peoples on Earth today, populations that live in isolation by choice and are known of mainly through hearsay. The Aenar live in underground caves in the remote northern wastes, so it doesn't seem at all unlikely that they could have remained hidden.


    No. Shran said they were finally rediscovered and contacted 50 years before. No doubt the Romulans learned of them far more recently.
     
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  3. MarkusTay

    MarkusTay Commander Red Shirt

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    The thing with the Romulans - okay, that makes more sense. I didn't remember it that way. i thought they only discovered them in that episode. I do have to wonder why Shran later visited them to take a wife... is he ugly by Andorian standards? Or maybe no regular Andorian woman would have him after he lost an antennae? Just seems odd.

    But I stand by the rest. Maybe 200 years would have been better? 'Uncontacted tribes' isn't really relevant, since we know about THEM, they just don't know about us. However, after discovery, I can see how the Andorians would have made the Aenar lands like a preserve, or reservation for them, with rules about just leaving them alone. That makes a lot of sense. Of course, then why/how did Shran get a wife from there?

    Then there is the thing about Romulans - who are directly descended from Vulcans - don't have any of their own telepaths? How'd that happen? I mean, it could make for good story-fodder (ancient Vulcans actually persecuted those born without such abilities?), but as the lore stands, I'm not sure why a Vulcan offshoot would loose all their psionic abilities.

    On the other hand, I do like that Shran did marry one - I guess the show had more intended for those people that they were never able to show us, so they just gave us that little snapshot at the end there. Maybe Talla went on to become a Jedi.
     
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  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Huh? "The Aenar" established an attraction between Shran and Jhamel, the Aenar woman featured in the episode. He didn't just marry any random Aenar, he married the specific woman he met and formed an attachment to, as we were shown in the episode. It seems to me that you really need to rewatch the episode, because most of the answers to your questions are already there. Or at least read the transcript.


    No, they know about us, but they choose to live in isolation. They couldn't avoid contact if they didn't know others were there to be avoided.

    And, again, the Andorians did know about the Aenar, through stories and folklore. They just didn't have proof that they really existed, or still existed.


    That's a good question, but not specific to "The Aenar." As a rule, Romulans have never been portrayed as having telepathic abilities, and it's never been adequately explained why.
     
  5. Kor

    Kor Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, what's so weird about Shran marrying Jhamel? "The Aenar" showed that they developed a genuine connection. Sure, their cultural values differed, as the Andorians were militaristic with warrior traditions, and the Aenar were pacifists. And Shran apparently had some misgivings and possibly suspicion about them when they first met. And he remarked that the Aenar had never even defended their own world. But on a personal level Shran came to admire Jhamel's bravery and personal strength, and her showing initiative to go find her brother even though the other Aenar didn't want her to do so probably had something to do with that.

    As far as Romulan telepathy, or absence thereof... Intriguingly, apparently somebody in the Vulcan Isolationist movement had some reason to believe that there could be a lead on pieces of the Stone of Gol, a Vulcan psionic amplifier, in ruins left by the Debrune, "an ancient offshoot of the Romulans." Maybe ancient Romulans or their "offshoots" had enough latent telepathic ability that they thought they could make some use of the thing.

    Kor
     
  6. MarkusTay

    MarkusTay Commander Red Shirt

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    IIRC, I had these concepts in my head immediately after watching the episode. So either I wasn't overly observant, or it wasn't conveyed properly. Maybe I was getting a drink when Shran said "we discovered them 50 years ago", or some-such (not making a joke - I do require fluids from time to time LOL).*

    And the only reason why I "find it weird" (not really - I even ended my last post saying I liked it) was that I don't recall any attraction between them. Perhaps I just wasn't looking for it, what with Archer 'swaggering' around the screen (that WAS a joke, albeit not a good one).

    As for the Romulans, in Pickard we see them using something akin to telepathy, although it is 'forced' onto them by an artifact. I thought they later did a mind-meld, but that was... someone.. else. I see them using psychology on people all the time to control their actions, even in TOS (a bit), so they seem to have gone a different route. However, in my fan-writings I am going to explore the possibility that the real reason for the Vulcan/Romulan split was that the Romulans COULDN'T follow the teachings of Sarek, and thus were denied the control their Vulcan brethren gained. They had to make their own way (using strict, military discipline instead?)

    *On a re-read, I realize how weird that might sound to younger people. No, I do not pause shows when I get something to drink (the kitchen is close-enough for me to still hear it... or so I thought). I come from a time when pausing shows didn't exist, so it doesn't come naturally to me. I do do it, but I have to think about it.
     
  7. Jedi Marso

    Jedi Marso Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    What I found unbelievable was that the number of Aenar remaining were not enough to provide a diverse enough gene pool to sustain the race going forward. Of course, the genetics of the Aenar and Andorians could (and probably are) totally different to ours.
     
  8. MarkusTay

    MarkusTay Commander Red Shirt

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    Its happened, even in RL. Groups of people dwindle and die-off. More-so than we are lead to believe. Those 'uncontacted tribes' mentioned above? They will eventually die-off, because those tribes are extremely small. The largest group is probably that one living on that island off the coast of India (although we don't know their numbers, one can assume having their own island for thousands of years means they have a stable population).

    And the fact that we are literally cutting down the rain forest around such indigenous peoples in S. America doesn't help their chances, AT ALL.

    Fun idea: The Aenar are the original Andorians, like their version of neanderthals. Because its a cold world, their society may have evolved below ground, where there was no need for eyes, but a distinct need for their other senses to be more acute (telepathy? Antennae?) Over time, they learned how to make fire, wear insulated clothing, build insulated homes, etc., and moved 'into the light'.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2022
  9. Jedi Marso

    Jedi Marso Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    If the Aenar had evolved with no need for eyes, they wouldn't have eyes, even blind ones. So it is far more likely that their blindness is some form of hereditary genetic defect (perhaps from too small a gene pool) and that they were once able to see.

    These are the problems associated with having to 'make' your aliens out of human actors and makeup. ;)
     
  10. Kor

    Kor Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    An interesting idea. However, the Aenar do have physical eyes with partially developed irises and possibly pupils in some individuals, which implies that they did have sight until some relatively 'recent' stage in the development of their subspecies.

    Kor
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    The novels posited that the Aenar had gone extinct by the 24th century, to explain their absence. Although later on, in my novel The Higher Frontier, I established that there was more to that story.
     
  12. MarkusTay

    MarkusTay Commander Red Shirt

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    Eyes can be vestigal, or whatever,. I can think of a dozen ways to explain them away and still keep my premise intact.
    For example, the xeno-hominds the Andorians evolved from lived on the surface, but then became a burrowing species, with less and less need for their eyes.

    So now I am wondering, like how our planet has 'Ice Ashes', if a cold world could have 'warm ages'? Things like that effect mutation/evolution quite a bit.
     
  13. Orac

    Orac Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    I know right? It's like the plot to a television programme.
     
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  14. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think they're less of a myth than people are giving credit for since the Prime Minister of Andoria was able to contact them and they reacted with, "Okay, we'll help you."

    I was getting more Inuit and "living off the grid" than "completely uncontacted people in the Amazon."
     
  15. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    As Shran said in the episode, they had been considered a myth until their existence was confirmed 50 years before.
     
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  16. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Commodore Commodore

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    And didn't somebody establish (in a "First Splinter" novel) that Thelin, from TAS:Yesteryear, was part Aenar (which would explain his non-blue complexion)?
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2022
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Yes, but not in a "First Splinter" novel, since that timeline was created in 2373, about a century after Thelin's heyday. Thelin was established as half-Aenar in the Myriad Universes novel The Chimes at Midnight by Geoff Trowbridge, which was set in the "Yesteryear" timeline. More recently, I followed Geoff's lead when I depicted the "Prime" version of Thelin in TOS: The Higher Frontier.
     
  18. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Commodore Commodore

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    I stand corrected about it being First Splinter.
     
  19. at Quark's

    at Quark's Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Compared to that Voyager 'dream alien' race with physical bodies that presumably needed sustenance and other things as much as we do, yet spending their primary existence sleeping and dreaming and complaining about being defenseless in the 'waking world', I wouldn't see those nonsensical Aenar aspects as too much of a problem ...
     
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  20. WarpTenLizard

    WarpTenLizard Captain Captain

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    I love the Aenar, but you have a damn good point. I suppose one flimsy explanation is that Bigfoot wasn't a powerful telepath. Maybe the Aenar somehow used their mental abilities to remain hidden (however that might work).