Was the Romulan fifty year absence retconned?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by DS9forever, Oct 10, 2011.

  1. DS9forever

    DS9forever Commodore Commodore

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    It seems strange that while "The Neutral Zone" established that the Romulans were absent from Federation contact for fifty years, the writers seemed to retcon this later, with Romulans responsible for the Khitomer attack and Martok facing off with them. A deleted or unfilmed scene from DS9's "The Wire" would have established Sisko as being assigned to the Federation embassy on Romulus.
     
  2. RaymondJames

    RaymondJames Captain Captain

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    They are Romulan, enough said. :lol: I would assume that in these 50 years of 'no contact'with the Federation, they were too busy building up forces and strengthening their Empire. Perhaps expanding there territory by taking non Federation sectors of space. Also, Romulan politics as we have seen change so perhaps in those 50years they were busy with coups and reorginazation.
     
  3. indolover

    indolover Fleet Captain

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    The Khitomer attack was against the Klingons, whilst the Federation just assisted. Same with Narenda III. Whilst the Romulans didn't bother with the Federation, it doesn't mean they were totally isolationist. Most likely they continually attacked the Klingons, well they're blood enemies, right? :lol:
     
  4. Satyrquaze

    Satyrquaze Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Having official contact is completely different from being responsible for the loss of a Federation Starship.

    A deleted scene is in no way, shape, or form canon.

    Your other examples involve Romulan/Klingon contact, not Romulan/Federation.
     
  5. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Not so much retconned as generally disregarded as stories came along that made it useful to postulate earlier interactions. And yes, Khitomer and Narendra count. Interpreting it as official contact is a good after-the-fact rationalization, but what "The Neutral Zone" specifically said is that there had been "no direct contact" since the Tomed Incident, that "For fifty years there's barely a whisper out of them," and that "Everything we know about them is based on rumour or conjecture." Certainly the Intrepid responding to a Romulan attack on Khitomer and the Enterprise-C being destroyed while defending Narendra III from Romulans would seem to suggest more than a "whisper" and more than rumor and conjecture.

    Of course, the Romulan attack on Khitomer was established in "Heart of Glory," before "The Neutral Zone." And "Angel One" had the Enterprise responding to a major Romulan incursion offscreen, months before "The Neutral Zone." So TNZ itself was contradicting/"retconning" earlier episodes when it claimed that there'd been "barely a whisper" from them for 50 years. Not to mention that "Heart of Glory" also ignored the Romulan incursion in "Angel One," because Picard said there that "Romulan" was "a name we haven't heard for a while," even though "Angel One" was only five episodes earlier.

    So really, the first season is a mess when it comes to information about the Romulans, due to the rapid turnover in the writing staff and the onset of the writers' strike toward the end of the season ("The Neutral Zone" was shot from a first-draft script and didn't go through a revision/error-correction process). The Romulans were mentioned in three first-season episodes and they all contradicted each other when it came to how long it had been since they'd been heard from. No matter what later writers did, they would've been contradicting something from season one.
     
  6. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There was no real diplomatic contact between the Romulans and the Feds in all that time, but maybe a few skirmishes or random encounters.

    We also had the Fed defector to the Romulans in "Face of the Enemy", I believe.
     
  7. Satyrquaze

    Satyrquaze Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I would like to point out that: The Enterprise-C was only lost and presumed destroyed near a Klingon outpost until Sub-Commander Sela revealed her origins to Picard in 'Redemption' part 2.

    Also, nothing in the Intrepid's response to the attack on Khitomer says they even saw any Romulan ships.
     
  8. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'd tend to agree with Christopher...later episodes focusing on the Khitomer massacre and Narendra III pretty much ignored the post-Tomed Incident "The Neutral Zone" statements, even though there was no direct contact from the Feds other than the Ent-C, which was destroyed. Quite frankly the 50 year absence never made much sense to me anyway. The Federation is not going to allow a huge insterstellar power (and major enemy) such as the Romulan Empire to just be ignored because they're keeping to themselves, especially when they share borders with both the Federation itself and another former enemy, the Klingons. So Starfleet Intelligence and/or Section 31 honestly knew nothing about the Romulan's actions for half a century? No spying happened or anything like that?:rolleyes:
     
  9. Anwar

    Anwar Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In TOS there was no contact at all with the Romulans for 100 years, no one complained there.
     
  10. Dukhat

    Dukhat Vice Admiral Admiral

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    True, but that didn't make much sense either.
     
  11. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The Feds probably figured that as long as they keep to the treaty they didn't care what the Romulans did, heack they didn't even know what they looked like at the time.