Was Flipping the Casting the Wrong Call?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by Bry_Sinclair, Jul 23, 2020.

  1. diankra

    diankra Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Similarly, Siddig was originally asked to audition for Sisko, as the producers had liked him in Lawrence After Arabia... where he wore ageing make-up. When he turned out to be 15 years younger than expected, they crossed him off the Sisko list but renamed Dr Amoros to suit him better.
     
  2. gakelly

    gakelly Commander Red Shirt

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    Sirtis would have been awful as security chief.
    There were too many characters to begin with. Worf was kind of pointless in the beginning with Yar also in the cast. Troi could have been a recurring character kind of like how DS9 used many of the characters.
    When a show has too many characters the writers have to find ways to use them.
     
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  3. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    I don't know for sure she would have been awful. I thought she did a fair job impersonating a nasty Tal Shiar b*tch in Face of the Enemy. And that was Sirtis, playing Troy, playing a Romulan security agent. If she could do so even within the additional confines of still being Troi (and simultaneously manage to convey Troi's uncertainty at the same time), what could Sirtis do if she didn't have those constraints?

    But I suppose I would have to see some other production where she played a very different character from Troi to know for sure (I don't watch a lot of TV or movies).
     
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  4. Shamrock Holmes

    Shamrock Holmes Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    She also did a fairly decent turn as Mossad Director Orli Elbaz on NCIS (2013-2016) more recently, IMO.
     
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  5. gakelly

    gakelly Commander Red Shirt

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    She doesn't intimidate anyone. She is like 5-2 or so. Yar was tall and fit and Worf is a big dude. Sirtis doesn't strike me as being particularly athletic.
     
  6. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

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    jenette Goldstein, the actress who played Vasquez (the character Yar was "inspired" by) is 5'3''. It's not just about height.
    And Yar wasn't exactly intimidating. Sure Crosby was tall, but also very lithe and willowy. As I wrote earlier in the thread, i don't quite understand why they didn't look for more muscular actresses.

    But if we just talk acting ability, I think Hernandez might have suited Sirtis better than Troi even. She would have certainly been up to the job.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2020
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  7. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Given she's an actress, if she can't play a range of different characters and personalities then she'd have gone hungry long ago.

    Have you not heard of the Gurkhas? They're not very physically imposing (the average height seems to be around 5'3") but they are renowned for their training, heroism and service--a former Indian Army Chief of Staff once stated: if a man says he is not afraid of dying, he is either lying or he is a Gurkha.

    Ones size does not determine how effective one would be in a security role. In a universe where a human will face off against vastly superior species (Vulcans have 3 times the strength of an average human male, and faster as well), then it comes down to cunning, tactical skills, and ability to out-think their opponent that will make all the difference.
     
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  8. Noname Given

    Noname Given Admiral Admiral

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    To be fair neither one of them could act. Hell it's well known that if Denise Crosby hadn't quit; the plan was to dump the character of Deanna Troi (and actress Marina Sirtis) at the conclusion of season 1. It's a story Marina Sirtis has told many times; and it was even confirmed to her by majel Barrett in later years.
     
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  9. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I do wonder what they might've done had they lost all three female main characters after S1.

    I did a little "what if" thinking around this and devised the following:
    • With the death of Lieutenant Yar, Lieutenant (jg) Worf is appointed Chief of Security
    • Commander Crusher accepts a post heading up Xenobiology at Starfleet Medical and is replaced by Lieutenant Commander Selar, the former Assistant Chief Medical Officer of the Enterprise-D
    • Lieutenant Commander Troi is offered a position with the Federation Diplomatic Corps and accepts
    • Starfleet assigns Lieutenant Commander Mizari Vahl (either a Bolian or Zelonite, some blue species) to the Enterprise as Second Officer, as well as a special diplomatic/linguistics/political advisor to Picard and Riker. Data remains at Ops though is demoted from Second to Third Officer
    • Lieutenant (jg) La Forge is promoted to Lieutenant and remains as Conn Officer
    • Lieutenant Sonya Gomez is appointed as the new permanent Chief Engineer, despite her youth she has already demonstrated herself as one of the best engineers in the fleet
     
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  10. JesterFace

    JesterFace Commodore Commodore

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    What do people mean with "Crosby can't act"?
    She can, at least in 'All Good Things...'. But, it's been a long time since I last visited season 1, maybe she can't?
     
  11. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Acting is something that grows and develops over time, with more practice and experience.
     
  12. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah but the reason they wanted to drop Troi is because they found her character "too hard" to write.

    I think that's a bit very optimistic, remember they were still operating under the idea that 3 female characters were, somehow, "too many" and Selar and Sonya Gomez were only conceived during season 2.
    Sirtis was kept because they didn't want to lose all 3 femal characters, but I suppose it's still possible that Sirtis could have quit for whatever reason, leading them to lose all three.

    I think what would have happened would have been like:
    - Worf and Geordi would have still gotten the same promotions.
    -We would have still gotten Pulaski for 1 season, with possibly Selar replacing her after that(in a scenario where Gates McFadden doesn't return) or a new CMO that is suspiciously similar to Beverly being introduced in season 3
    -Data would have been moved into Troi's chair (not as counselor, but as 2nd officer, we would never have gotten a new counselor)
    - They would have hired a new attractive actress as female eye candy to brighten up the bridge (just like Troi was used, only in a standard uniform) possibly taking Data's old seat at OPS or the Helm (with Wesley moving yo OPS) possibly they would have called back some of the runners up for the Hernandez character for this new one.

    The new CMO (if not Selar) and the bridge bunny character would either have been humans or a kind of alien that still allows the actresses to look as conventionally actractive as possible, there's a reason after all that Betazoid and Bajorans look so human (and Trill turned more human looking once Farrel was cast)
    On the positive side, as the writing improved by season 3 and beyond the bridge bunny character might have grown into a competent and nuanced character, provided they managed to hire a reasonably talented actress.
     
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  13. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    During the development of TNG there seems to have been a brief time when women outnumbered men, with both Crushers, Troi, Hernandez and a Vulcan Science Officer, compared to Picard, Riker, Data and La Forge.
     
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  14. Orphalesion

    Orphalesion Commodore Commodore

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    And then, unfortunately Roddenberry happened....

    BTW did you know that an actress named Kim Miyori read for the part of Data at one point? https://memory-alpha.fandom.com/wiki/Performers_considered_for_TNG_roles#Kim_Miyori

    So imagine if that all would have worked out. We would have had Dr. and Leslie Crusher, Troi, Hernandez, the Vulcan Science Officer and Data. With the only male characters being Picard, Ryker and LaForge (and possibly Worf if he had still become a main character).

    Don't get me wrong, I loved your ideas, I just think there was too much sexism going on in the production for it to happen in Season 2 of TNG.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2020
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  15. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I did not know about Kim, very cool.

    Unfortunately the real world has a long way to go. I’m looking forward to the time that we have a female heavy cast on a Trek show, though definitely not holding my breath.
     
  16. Farscape One

    Farscape One Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    LOWER DECKS has exactly 50/50 ratio of male and female leads with 4 people of each gender.
     
  17. Shamrock Holmes

    Shamrock Holmes Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Seems legit.

    I'd consider Exobotany, Cybernetics/Medical Engineering or Epidemiology/Infectious Diseases personally, but I suppose some or all of those would go under the Xenobiology "envelope".

    And any of the options make more sense than her being the "Head of Starfleet Medical", in the US that's a Vice Admiral/Lt General's billet (SGOTUS, Service SGs) or a Rear Admiral/Major-General's billet (Walter Reed CO).

    Possible, certainly she is the most senior medical officer seen on screen, although the EaF novelisation identifies the AsstCMO as Ismail Asenzi, and Selar was only a LT canonically during the period.


    I could see that.

    Given that Troi isn't even a Bridge Officer, it seems unnecessary to demote Data to accommodate this new character. Though they do intrigue me in general.


    Fair enough.

    Given that she is described as "recent Academy graduate" when we first meet her, which is mid-season two this seems unlikely.

    IMO, if you want a female ChEng then LTCDR Sarah McDougall from The Naked Now seems a better option to me.
     
  18. Bry_Sinclair

    Bry_Sinclair Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^ Different universe so slightly different tweaks to the characters.

    Selar's first appearance would be in the first episode of S2 but it would be established in dialogue that she had been onboard throughout the last year. Gomez would still be a fairly recent graduate but doing a Riker and shooting up through the ranks quickly, I went with her because I envisioned a La Forge/Gomez relationship somewhere down the line. Data has no ego to bruise, so I don't see him being snubbed at having a new boss (Geordi might take offense on his behalf though), but Vahl would be as much an advisor to Data, helping him understand humanity in new ways from a diplomatic and cultural perspective, just as he and Selar would debate the logic of his choice to emulate humans when his very nature is so much more.

    On Earth, Beverly could probably write her own job description, taking on whatever projects or new discoveries she wanted. Wesley I think would remain on the E-D, though I would make maybe Riker or La Forge an actual guardian/big brother for him--he would also inhabit one of the aft science consoles or help out in engineering, somewhere that makes the most of his talents.
     
  19. NigellaDeanna20

    NigellaDeanna20 Commander Red Shirt

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    agreed. Had we lost Troi we'd have lost the Troi-Riker dynamic which, like it or not, was one of the best things about the show,.
     
  20. CuriousCaitian

    CuriousCaitian Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I believe they made the right choices, and agree with others that Sirtis would have made a better Yar/Hernandez than Crosby would a Troi.

    Sirtis is a better, more versatile actress than some are willing to credit her as being. Before TNG, she guested in an episode of the Brett Sherlock Holmes, The Six Napoleons, playing a heightened character very different from Troi really rather well, especially given all her dialogue was Italian, at least if I recall correctly.

    Crosby played a recurring villain in Lois & Clark, and while it's a fun turn, it's not appreciably different from Yar. She does seem to have a fairly limited range, but I wouldn't call her bad.

    I'm also unsure things would have been very different had the roles been switched; the same early-series issues would have been in play, after all, as others have noted. Still, as much as I love TNG, the what ifs can't help but tantalise.

    I, for one, would certainly not have objected.
     
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