When does Chekov return after TAS...?

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Ryan's Head Canon, Oct 15, 2021.

  1. Ryan's Head Canon

    Ryan's Head Canon Ensign Newbie

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    Okay so we have two great moments in the novelverse -- Bennett's Face of the Unknown and Swallow's The Latter Fire -- where Chekov is shown leaving the Enterprise as an explanation for his absence during the Animated Series.

    My question for all of you: is there a moment where we see Chekov return to the Enterprise, either before The Motion Picture or before other late tie-in adventures like the Year Five comics? Is that otherwise explained somewhere?

    This is part of my ongoing pursuit of a continuous headcanon inclusive of many novels and other tie-in media. Let me know, thanks!
     
  2. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Commodore Commodore

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    I mean it's arguable he never left. Maybe he moved to 2nd shift.

    I know, I know, I should read those, though.
     
  3. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I don't think there's ever been a "Chekov returns to the Enterprise" moment - I think it's often taken as once he leaves, whenever or why he leaves (or if his leaving is acknowledged), it's on the idea that he's gone for however long Arex is there, and there are some takes on TAS that frame it as the last two years of "the five year mission," so that, when the show ends, so does the five year mission, so Chekov wouldn't "return" until the refit happens.

    It's been a while since I read Face of the Unknown, wasn't that offering the idea that Chekov is taking advanced tactical training, in the name of his transfer over to security come TMP? Our one canon reference to this training is with Ro Laren, and her absence from the Enterprise for what amounted to over a year (at least, from the viewer's perspective), and I think the tactical training that Ezri is said to have gone through over the course of the time skip in the DS9 novel Ascendance puts it at a couple months at least... Depending on how you place his departure, and how long you want to take his training happening over, it could easily cover the time of the end of the Enterprise's mission.
     
  4. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Okay, this needs clarification. I first addressed Chekov's absence in Ex Machina, mentioning that he'd taken a leave of absence in an effort to pursue a relationship with Irina Galliulin, and had come back to the ship after it didn't work out, with Arex getting a promotion and a transfer at the same time -- thus leaving room for various novels that take place in the last year of the 5YM and include Chekov.

    When I wrote The Face of the Unknown, I gave Chekov an arc that led up to this decision and set up his departure from the ship as described in ExM. Then I read James Swallow's The Latter Fire, which opened with Chekov leaving the ship to pursue tactical training, and I revised TFotU's epilogue to be consistent with it, so that Chekov was still pursuing tactical training but was doing it in order to have a chance to go back to Earth and see if a relationship with Irina would work.

    So the idea of Chekov taking tactical training didn't come from me, but from Jim Swallow. Although L.A. Graf's The Lost Years: Traitor Winds was the first book to depict Chekov taking tactical training prior to TMP, so maybe Jim got the idea from there.
     
  5. Veeza

    Veeza Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    And it should be noted that not all works show Chekov leaving at all…

    “That Which Divides” (which is also part of the Litverse) has him present late 2269 and explains his bridge absence during TAS as a rotation Spock puts him on throughout different departments.

    Personally I enjoyed all three books (TFofU/TLF/TWD) and both versions of Chekov not been present as alternate takes of the same idea.

    What I do find a bit frustrating sometimes is late-5 year mission books (ie. Savage Trade) that have Chekov back as a navigator and Arex/M’Ress gone again as if TAS never happened at all. It is hard to buy that the crew would just reset like that.

    Anyway as I mentioned in another thread, I enjoy the stories first and foremost and put any of the inconsisities like the above to so some weird temporal flux the 5-year mission time period is in.:lol:
     
  6. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I mean, some of the time, there's been a question of how much TAS can or should be acknowledged - wasn't there a period where Roddenberry had an edict about not referencing it, one of those that lasted after his death? Like I know that a book like JM Dillard's The Lost Years, published in 1989, didn't acknowledge things from TAS like Arex or M'Ress and had Chekov at the helm when the Enterprise's mission concluded.

    As time as gone on, yeah, TAS has gotten more accessible, but it isn't necessarily more watched on the whole now than it used to be, so I can believe that, say, for the sake of casual readers, the decision is usually to go in the direction of utilizing the cast of characters the audience is most familiar with.
     
  7. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Commodore Commodore

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    While yes, there's a good argument that it was done because they were wondering who owned the rights.
     
  8. Bryan Levy

    Bryan Levy Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Everybody knows that they added Arex because Walter left to film Showgirls.
     
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  9. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    There has been one another explanation of Chekov’s absence depicted, very recently in fact. Year Five shows Sulu and Chekov having a major falling out and Chekov is replaced on the bridge by Arex for a few months until Sulu and Chekov can reconcile. I assume the writers meant for this to be when TAS took place, though it’s hard to say definitively.

    In my personal timeline, I have Chekov only gone for about five months before returning, not even before all the episodes of TAS have played out.

    https://startreklitverse.com/the-five-year-mission--month-by-month.php
     
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  10. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    It was Roddenberry himself who floated the idea that Chekov was off-ship retraining as the Security Chief during TAS, a role he would have played in "Phase II" and did in TMP.

    From the hiatus between Seasons One and Two of TNG until the death of Roddenberry in September 1991 (and dismissal of Richard Arnold), TAS was off-limits for the licensed tie-ins. It was also the time of Filmation's winding down. TAS wasn't airing anywhere, and all of Filmation's ownership rights were in a state of flux. Some novelists chose not to reference TAS simply because they had never watched that series (ie. Janet Kagan, whose novel "Uhura's Song" featured felinoids, but never mentioned Caitians, even though Starfleet doctors were researching other felinoids to seek a solution to a planetary medical crisis). But, from the novelization of "Unification" by Jeri Taylor, references to TAS were again permitted.
     
  11. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    That doesn't seem very plausible. It's the military. If you have an assigned duty post, you do it, personal feelings notwithstanding. And Kirk strikes me as the type who, if a couple of his junior officers came to him and asked to be reassigned because they were fighting, would say "Denied! You're not schoolboys on the playground, you're Starfleet officers! Work it out. That's an order." He certainly wouldn't let a disruptive personal conflict within his crew go unaddressed for months.
     
  12. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Starfleet is not the military! [/Gene Roddenberry's ghost]
     
  13. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    That's the TNG-era Roddenberry. TOS portrayed James T. Kirk as very much a no-nonsense military officer.
     
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  14. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Looking back at those issues, it was actually Spock who made the decision, during a moment when Kirk was incapacitated. But that remained the status quo for quite some time in the series, so Kirk must have stood by Spock’s decision after the fact.
     
  15. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Premium Member

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    Yep. "I'm a soldier, not a diplomat."
     
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  16. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    That makes it even more implausible. Spock is the only one less likely than Kirk to let crewmembers' emotional issues interfere with their duty assignments.
     
  17. Stevil2001

    Stevil2001 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Arex was already there in the Year Four comics, though, wasn't he? So that can't be the whole story.
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    IDW has never had a single consistent continuity in its comics. I mean, they already did one version of the end of the 5YM with Mission's End. So I'm not sure if Year Five is consistent with anything before it.
     
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  19. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It’s also not very good. There are some interesting points, and I applaud them for their commitment to a huge two year long storyline, but it was very flawed.
     
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  20. Stevil2001

    Stevil2001 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I know that IDW doesn't have an overall "continuity" but I assumed Year Five was consistent with Year Four just on the basis of the name! The only bit of either I have read, though, is the Paul Cornell Valentine's Day Special.