What's the worst non-canon decision in the history of Trek?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by F. King Daniel, Jul 3, 2021.

  1. Sci

    Sci Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Nothing solid yet, but the recurring Andorian character whom Mariner has started dating on Lower Decks was revealed to have the full name of "JENNIFER SH'REYAN" as a nod to the TrekLit naming convention in the S2 episode "I, Excretus." (Memory Alpha lists her as "Jennifer Sh'reyan," though, whereas traditional TrekLit naming convention would capitalize it as "Jennifer sh'Reyan.") And of course longtime TrekLit Kirsten Beyer is a writer on Discovery and Picard, a producer on Discovery, Picard, and Strange New Worlds, and a co-creator of Picard. So there's a half-decent chance this might get "elevated" to canon one day.

    And for the record, the Andorians have four sexes, not four genders. Presumably there could be genderqueer Andorians with gender identities outside of the zhen/shen/chaan/thaan paradigm.
     
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  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    No, but people tend to overlook that the novels intended two of the Andorian sexes to present outwardly as male and the others to present as female, and to use the corresponding pronouns in English. I suppose you could say that Andorians have four sexes (reproductive biology) but two genders (personality and behavior).

    Naturally, the writers knew going in that the screen canon had always portrayed Andorians as conventionally male and female, so they crafted the four-sex paradigm to look like two genders, so it would be consistent with that previous and expected future portrayal. So the fact that the screen productions have continued to portray Andorians as male and female does not contradict the books, since the books' model was designed to account for that.

    And no, ENT's depiction of Shran and Jhamel's marriage doesn't contradict it either, because the books' model only says four sexes are required for the act of reproduction, not for a romantic relationship. A couple could recruit a pair of surrogates to procreate with, then raise the child as a couple. Again, the writers consciously designed the books' model so it would not contradict the shows' expected portrayal, because tie-in writers understand that it's our job to fit within the parameters of canon, not to deliberately create conflicts with it.
     
  3. Bryan Levy

    Bryan Levy Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Are they dating on the show, or is that just hoped for on Facebook groups? I thought they only just began grudgingly accepting each other when the season ended.
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I think it was reported that they'll be an item in season 3. The ending wasn't "grudgingly accepting each other" so much as "realizing they were into each other."
     
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  5. Bryan Levy

    Bryan Levy Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    That makes sense as well. I haven’t seen it since it came out, but I definitely didn’t remember a date on screen.
     
  6. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And we had Genesis Wave postulating that Leah's husband died during that crisis, and that Geordi was giving her a respectful distance, despite his feelings for her.

    Still, yeah... That relationship just does NOT work for me. Like, I find it's such a bad, BAD foundation, that Picard's third season could have Susan Gibney appear alongside Geordi and acknowledge her as "Geordi's wife, Leah" or something like that, and I'd call canon a dirty rotten liar. That's how opposed I am to them romantically. A friendship, yes, that'd be fine for me. But not a romantic couple.
     
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  7. ThetaSigma

    ThetaSigma Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Just what is it exactly makes you so vehemently dislike it! Just out of interest.
     
  8. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    They did encounter each other again in Indistinguishable From Magic and by then they appear to have settled in as friends (I believe Geordi was in the beginnings of his romance with what's her name from the Enterprise, I can't recall off the top of my head). I believe IFM was the last novel to acknowledge the Genesis Wave novels (though not really surprising since by then it was several years prior). So IIRC the romance was largely gone by then, they both decided to remain friends. I don't believe Dr. Brahms showed up in any novels after that.

    And yeah, I remember her husband had died during the Genesis crisis.

    I think at least for me (and what I believe what DGCat...) is referring to about the foundation of their relationship is that it was based on some deception and some people found it a little creepy. I never went that far personally. There was some extenuating circumstances in "Booby Trap" and just knowing the character of Geordi, I know he's not that 'creepy' kind of guy. He just got a little to wrapped up in her character in the simulation and her actually being based on a real person made him lose his head a little bit. It happens. Geordi is not a creepy stalker guy so I never found that creepy really. None of us are perfect. Geordi perhaps exercised a little poor judgment, but feelings sometimes are what they are.

    Then in "Galaxy's Child" he expects something different from her and then he finds out she is married and is frustrated. But again, I can see some of his frustration. And Guinan sets him straight and he has a mea culpa. At the end of that episode it always seemed to me that they decided to remain friends and Geordi seemed at least to me to be ok with that. That he no longer sought a romantic relationship with her.

    So the foundation for a romantic relationship just isn't the best in this case. I was happy with how things ended in "Galaxy's Child" personally. Brahms was rightfully upset after seeing what happened in "Booby Trap" but after working with Geordi and getting to know him better, I think she came to understand the extenuating circumstances and ended up not holding things against him. And they parted ways as friends. She took the high road basically.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2022
  9. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    @Damian: Your interpretation of the events of "Galaxy's Child" is way too generous to La Forge, whose behavior in the entire episode is utterly reprehensible.

    I agree with you on "Booby Trap," up to a point -- it was a crisis, stuff happened fast, and I can accept it. I still think it was incredibly creepy, but I see the argument that it wasn't.

    In "Galaxy's Child," though, he was beyond the pale. He repeatedly lied to her, misled her, and creepily hit on her when she was just trying to do her job.

    The worst was the fungili thing. He offers to make her dinner in his quarters (which obviously makes her extremely uncomfortable, but she says yes anyhow), and says he makes a mean fungili. She says, "I love fungili," and he says, "Really?" as if it's a total shock, when in fact, he learned of her love of fungili from his holographic blow-up doll.

    So he doesn't come clean and say, "Yeah, I read up on you and saw that you liked fungili," which would've been honest and open. Instead, he pretends like he came up with fungili totally on his own and wow, look, we both are so compatible, and we should totally go have sex now.......

    And then when she finds the holographic blow-up doll -- which, let's face it, looks really bad on the face of it -- does he fall on his sword? Does he say mea culpa, as you say he does? Nope. He yells at her for being so mean to him because he was just trying to be friendly.

    Women have been dealing with this kind of shitty behavior from men forever, and it's horrific. What's even more horrific is that the episode has La Forge behaving this way and then takes his side that Brahms has been a big fat meanie for not responding to La Forge being creepy and macking on a married woman who is obviously not interested.

    Which is why every single story that postulates La Forge and Brahms getting together in the future is despicable and wrong.
     
  10. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well when you put it like that :whistle:

    I guess considering that suffice it to say "Galaxy's Child" was badly written from that angle. I try to give LaForge some credit I suppose based on his portrayal overall in the series. I know he's not generally a creepy stalker kind of guy. I viewed it as he got wrapped up in a fantasy and got very upset when his fantasy blew up in his face. Then he ends up digging his hole deeper and deeper. And I guess one positive in the episode is Guinan does call him out on it and that seems to be when Geordi has his about face. When he seems to realize he was the one that is in the wrong, not Dr. Brahms.

    I would prefer it being written differently. I don't like how Geordi is portrayed in "Galaxy's Child" because in general, he's a good guy. I don't think the character is meant to be creepy stalker guy and I thought it's a shame we have to try to explain his behavior in "Galaxy's Child" because he is presented in that light in that episode.

    The Genesis Wave novels leaves things a bit up in the air. But it seems Indistinguishable From Magic firmly establishes that they are just friends. I guess credit to Dr. Brahms for taking the high road there and forgiving Geordi (perhaps seeing that he just made a series of bad decisions and that he's not really a bad guy).
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I don't think it's creepy, because Geordi didn't initiate it. The holodeck did. Geordi just wanted an expert program he could consult with. The holodeck suggested constructing a simulation based on Brahms's recorded behavior and writings, and he was surprised when it turned out to be a holographic character rather than just a disembodied voice. And presumably the character got mushy toward Geordi because the computer extrapolated that that was how the simulated personality would respond to him. None of it was Geordi's own idea.

    If anything, I always took Geordi's bond with holo-Leah as symbolic of his bond with the Enterprise's engines, which holo-Leah was a personified stand-in for, embodying them because she was their designer. Maybe it could even be taken as the Enterprise expressing its appreciation for Geordi taking care of it, using the holographic character as a conduit. I never saw it as actually being about the real Leah Brahms.

    But yeah, "Galaxy's Child" really mishandled the followup, in a way that retroactively taints the original, far more innocent story.
     
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  12. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Probably a better way of looking at it. Taken on it's own I don't think too many people would think of "Booby Trap" as being outright creepy. I think what happened is "Galaxy's Child" came out and perhaps caused some people to see "Booby Trap" in a different light, fairly or not. I can understand Dr. Brahm's reaction in "Galaxy's Child." Geordi didn't intend on making her feel violated in "Booby Trap"...he didn't even really know her at that point, but I can understand why the real Brahm's might feel that way at the same time. The writing in Galaxy's Child could have been a lot better for Geordi. They tried to course correct a bit with Guinan basically putting Geordi in his place later on, and credit to Brahm's for giving Geordi the hand of friendship once she got to know him better.

    I guess I try to excuse some of Geordi's actions because on the whole, he's not a bad guy. I kind of see it as a guy who was having a bad day, made a series of poor choices that dug himself in a hole and his feelings got in the way of rationality. We all have moments we're not particularly proud of, when we look back on and might even be ashamed of how we handled a situation.
     
  13. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    "Be careful what you ask for on the Holodeck, you may get it" shows up often enough that it's almost a trope.
     
  14. captainmkb

    captainmkb Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    :whistle:
     
  15. WarpTenLizard

    WarpTenLizard Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Magically curing Seven of Nine of all her Borg implants. Really, the whole thing with the Borg: undoing Voyager's victory in "Endgame" to instead making the Borg, like, a bazillion time more worser, so Picard can defeat them a bazillion times more better, and killing Janeway and de-Borging Seven of Nine for good measure. Obviously one giant middle finger to "Voyager." Kristen Beyer did her best to fix the damage, but she could only do so much.

    And this is why I love "Picard," even for all its faults. Thank. God. The book-"canon" was obliterated. And thank God Picard's canon writers can build up their favorite without putting another series down.
     
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  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Huh? No, it didn't undo it, it arose directly as a consequence of it. "Endgame" never implied that Voyager destroyed the Borg completely, and mass genocide of trillions of helpless slaves would hardly have been a "victory" in Star Trek terms. Janeway dealt the Borg enough of a setback that for the first time, they considered the Federation more than a distant curiosity and mild nuisance and upgraded it to a major threat that had to be dealt with properly. Destiny was the first time we saw the full might of the Borg Collective directed toward the Federation, in contrast to how, in many fans' perception, Voyager had made the Borg seem ineffectual in its inability to defeat one ship.

    And Picard didn't defeat them; a coalition of main characters understood and liberated them.


    Nothing in that sentence makes sense. There was no book-canon, merely a conjectural continuity, one of several that existed in the tie-ins alongside Star Trek Online and the IDW comics at the very least. And it wasn't obliterated, because these are all just works of make-believe exploring possibilities. Different fictional continuities do not "obliterate" or even compete with one another. They just coexist as alternative speculations. The point of fiction is not to "get it right" or "win" something, merely to intrigue and satisfy an audience with an exploration of possibilities. The great thing about make-believe is that you can explore multiple different possibilities.
     
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  17. captainmkb

    captainmkb Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    once more for the people sitting in the back! :)
     
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  18. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    And ultimately it was the Caeliar, not the Federation and it's allies, that ended the Borg threat.

    Yes, exactly. One thing I liked about the Destiny trilogy is it actually brought some real menace back to the Borg. Would the Borg be pushed to the point that assimilation was no longer the goal, that someone could be a big enough threat that they actually needed to be destroyed. David Mack also addressed the question as to why were the Borg so interested in humans. It always seemed their interest went beyond simple assimilation of the Federation. Their origins gives a possible answer to that.

    I never got the impression they were attempting to disrespect Voyager in any way though. In fact, "Endgame" had significant consequences and led directly to the Borg finally deciding the Federation was an existential threat. So quite the contrary, the Voyager finale was taken even more seriously by David Mack (and all the writers that helped set up the story for Destiny).

    I'm on the opposite side of that argument. I greatly preferred the novel continuity over Picard (Picard, particularly season 2, is the first Star Trek production that I actually dislike, to the point I have zero interest in ever watching it again). But then, to each their own.

    My only question is if you didn't like the litverse...which is fine I might add, then why read them at all? I didn't like season 2 of Picard. I may decide not to watch season 3, though I'll probably at least check out the season premiere just to see where they are going with it. But you, and I, have a choice. I wouldn't want Picard to end though just because I didn't like it. I know others do so I'm fine with them enjoying it as it goes on.
     
  19. ThetaSigma

    ThetaSigma Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I’m of the same opinion regarding Destiny and I like most of the novel verse although I disagree with basically every creative decision with the post Destiny DS9 books.

    Out of interest what do you dislike about Picard season 2, I’ve seen other people say they have a negative opinion, with no explanation. I had a positive opinion myself but would welcome your opinion
     
  20. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I posted my comments about what I didn't like in the Picard thread. I copied the link below. There was virtually nothing I liked about season 2 other than seeing John deLancie again. Even though I didn't like the overall Q story in season 2, deLancie still kicks ass in the role. He hasn't lost a step since we last saw him in Voyager. But that was about the only thing I liked.

    Like anything when it comes to Star Trek, I've come to learn there is great variation in opinions. I always say I'm one of the 10 people that liked Star Trek: Nemesis, so I sometimes have the oddball opinion. Oh, and Iiked Exorcist II: The Heretic. I don't think you can even find 10 people that liked that movie :lol:. But reading the comments about Picard 2 it does seem to be a wide variation of opinions. Some loved it, some hated it, and some fell somewhere in the middle.

    Spoilers - So, what do we think of Season 2 now that it's done? | Page 12 | The Trek BBS
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2022