Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Cmdr.Druss, Sep 27, 2013.
I always get happy with my bat'leth...
Well, it depends on when Riker leaves. Not least is because he might well take some folks with him to his new command! In fact, I think Riker might well have taken Data has his First Officer.
But since we're talking alternate whatevers, I think a good first officer for Picard would have been Ro Laran. Mind you, Geordi is senior to her but I've a feeling TNG could have gotten around that, not least because Starfleet doesn't seem to function like any military organization I've ever heard of. She was a great character, someone Picard trusted and admired, with considerable ability as well as personal courage. They'd've had to come up with some excuse to promote her, but the writers could have whipped one of those out of thin air if they had to.
Clearly, Riker left at the end of NEM - he had the four pips & everything.
And I don't think Picard would just Ro again after the events of 'Preemptive Strike'. Though the DS9 Relaunch has put Ro to good use in the Bajoran Militia (and later back in Starfleet thanks to Picard's influence).
Shelby? UGHHH! I intensely disliked her character. She is the last person I would want to see as XO! She was annoying, and just not likeable for me. Although, I am surprised they didn't re-use Shelby as Captain of Voyager, instead of creating Janeway.
I think by Season 4, had Riker left after BOBW for a command of his own, Data should have been next up as Picard's Number One. Worf as depicted in TNG, while a good officer, was never qualified to be second in command of the Enterprise.
See, I liked the character of Riker, and Frakes, but I also agree that it never made sense after BOBW, for Riker to turn down a Captaincy, especially after he already WAS promoted to captain, once Picard was captured. In essence, Riker helps save Earth and gets DEMOTED for his trouble.
I'm personally a fan of the idea that they should have written out Will Riker somehow (be it promoted, or killed off), then promoted Data and Worf, and introduced Tom Riker earlier, and assigned him to the Enterprise. Then, occasionally, we could have seen Will Riker make occasional guest appearances aiding Picard occasionally like Sulu for Kirk in TUC, while Tom Riker, who would be normally featured, would have had to work his way up through the ranks, after adjusting to being back in civilization.
It would have given Troi something to actually do, too, as Tom Riker would be both the patient and love interest for her. Would have been nice to see how Tom Riker adjusted, and it would have made a good story arc and he would have been more interesting than Will Riker in Seasons 4-7.
Depends on when Riker becomes a Captain. Remember the premise of this thread is that he accepts promotion earlier than NEM, one of the numerous times it was offered. So my scenario presumes Picard needs a new Exec prior to "Preemptive Strike."
For what it is worth, I never liked Shelby either. Frankly, I think it had something to do with the actor.
If Shelby became first officer, how long before she tells Picard he's in her way and that he plays it too safe?
Doubt it would happen. Shelby may be a hothead but she's not stupid. She can get away with mouthing off to Riker in the end with no long term negative effects since she was the Admiral's favorite and Picard was the one ultimately in charge there. Mouthing off to the one man in charge who writes her performance reports as first officer is another story. There's no appeal there and the Picard speech of disappointment usually warrants no rebuttal. She cooled down noticeably in part two after Hanson was dead and Riker was captain.
There's a difference between assuming the position as the next in line on the ship and having the rank to hold it long-term. Data may not have qualified for the promotion to Commander and permanent first officer at that point, in Starfleet's eyes. And somebody correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think that Riker got an actual rank promotion in BOBW...he just assumed command of the Enterprise as the highest ranking officer onboard.
The commander of a starship is called "Captain" even if they don't hold the actual rank.
Well the admiral guy calls it a field promotion. Then Riker chooses his own first officer. I take it to mean if Picard was gone for good, he would remain captain.
I'd say it wasn't a smart move on her part to make an enemy of Riker, because Picard actually asks Riker what he thinks of her.
I always liked the speculation that for the episode Second Chances with Tom Riker, the writers considered sending Will on his way in a new command and leaving Tom around as a Lt Cmdr. and rekindling his relationship with Deanna. This would create a whole new dynamic with the same actors. Building off of that, I would probably pull in a new XO not from within. Someone very different from Will Riker yet still a very strong leader. However, following the events in Insurrection, I had hoped that in the next film, Will would already have his own command and that Geordi, having proved himself a worth XO during the battle with the Sona' would go with him and be his Number One.
Apparently Frakes thought it would have been a neat idea too, had they'd gone that route, and was even open to killing Will off for it.
Even that wouldn't be a given. Starfleet might have permanently replaced Picard with a different commanding officer than Riker after the dust settled.
Data's promotion, or lack thereof, to first officer would have most likely have been at the discretion of Picard. I would like to think that since Data was set to have the position in Nemesis before he was killed, AND Jellico also had enough confidence in Data to replace Riker with him, and the fact Data had some 20 years in Starfleet with multiple awards for valor and having saved the Enterprise dozens of times, if he wasn't ready for XO after BOBW, no one was.
As to Riker, good question. Unlike a senior officer assuming command of the ship and being called captain, even if that officer isn't one by rank, Riker actually was wearing the insignia of a captain after his battlefield promotion.
So, since he chose to stay on the Enterprise, and since there can be only one captain at a time, Riker must have accepted a demotion. Probably since he helped save Earth and all, he likely knew that Starfleet "owed" him, and whenever he felt he was ready to move on, he would have had but ask for a ship of his own (IE Like assuming command of Titan). So it likely didn't hurt his career by turning down the promotion, as it would otherwise have, but he still must have accepted a voluntary demotion, nonetheless.
^If he was wearing the pips (I'd never noticed), then that would suggest that it was meant to be a true promotion, then.
Taking a reduction in rank, voluntarily or otherwise, in order to serve in a particular position does have its precedent in Trek...note Decker in TMP and Kirk in TVH.
I always liked this idea, myself. I'd really like to have seen it happen. I'd liked to have seen a female first officer; someone who was a strong leader, comfortable in her abilities and not a bitch. Someone likeable.
I hear what you say about Geordi, too. The little time he was on-screen in the films he really impressed me in a way that he never seemed to do during the series. I think he would make a good first officer, too.
That would have been an absolutely perfect "trap door" scenario. J M S used that very effectively in Babylon 5 to make sure he didn't blindsided by an actor leaving unexpectedly, but there's no reason it couldn't be used to solve a dilemma with a character arc. Of course, how Frakes would have reacted to his character being demoted in the ship and in the ensemble, but the story opportunities would have been simply awesome. #tngmissedopportunities
I always took the "field commission" as something of a brevet rank. You have the rank, but it's not permanent and we can take it away whenever we don't need you doing it anymore. Wesley likewise had a field commission of Ensign but was later a Cadet.
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