Which Doctor Did You Like Better...Dr. Crusher or Dr. Pulaski?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by CmndrSela318, Apr 10, 2010.

  1. GalaxyX

    GalaxyX Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jan 28, 2004
  2. Michael

    Michael Good Bad Influence Moderator

    Jul 10, 2007
    Aloha Quadrant
    Pulaski all the way, yes. Not that I hate Crusher, but sometimes it's hard for me to even think of her as a character at all. I mean, what are her defining characteristics? Anyway, I loved Pulaski. She had a very human quality to her and seemed much more real to me than Crusher.
  3. diankra

    diankra Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Jun 22, 2005
    Both and neither:
    On balance I like Pulaski as a character, even though she was too obviously a bit of a Bones-dupe in her early episodes. On the strength of what she did around the same time in LA Law, Diana Muldaur could have really fleshed out the character into something quirky and special over a longer time.
    On the other hand, I really liked Beverly in season one, and was irritated when she was dropped. But she never really took off after she came back (aside from the 'one per season' highlight episodes), whereas most of the other characters really built during season two (not Geordi, maybe, but O'Brien somehow did, despite minimal screentime).
    So... Crusher probably lost out through not being in season two, and Pulaski wasn't around long enough to build up 'momentum'.
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  4. Araashan

    Araashan Cadet Newbie

    Apr 13, 2010

    Seriously, I really liked Pulaski. I think if she'd stayed longer on the show, she'd have become a truly great character. Her relationship with Data in particular was very interesting. As for Crusher, she's probably my least favorite doctor, I just never felt the character really stood out.
  5. jimbo1973

    jimbo1973 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Sep 6, 2007
    Crusher hands down. As stated before Pulaski was too much like Mccoy.
  6. Red Ranger

    Red Ranger Admiral In Memoriam

    May 20, 2005
    New York City, the greatest city in the world!
    Neither. Wish they'd written Beverly out completely and brought in a third, more interesting female CMO. I do think Pulaski was closer to what they needed, but her early attacks on Data made her highly unsympathetic. Even though she later became an ally of his (esp. in Peak Performance), that never sat well with me.

    As CMOs go, I think the other series had stronger, more interesting ones, even ENT's Phlox. I would've liked to see an Andorian female CMO on TNG who was kind of quirky and had an unusual bedside manner.
  7. Elzie

    Elzie Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Apr 8, 2010
    Nowhere, elsewhere & everywhere
    I don't really care too much about neither one of them, but over time I've started to like Crusher more.

    Pulaski seemed like a stronger character, because of her personality, but she was always so mean, and not even on the same way McCoy did - and that way was brilliant! - so I never really got to like her. Crusher isn't my favorite character, but I was - to my surprise - pretty happy when she came back.

    And like someone already said, it would be much nicer to see Crusher after a surgery. She's nicer. But it's not like she couldn't defend herself!
  8. Too Much Fun

    Too Much Fun Commodore Commodore

    Feb 19, 2009
    I don't think Crusher was quite as one-dimensional as you imply, although I understand how it could be easy to start thinking of her that way since she was so frequently reduced to a non-presence on the show. I think one clear defining characteristic was her obsession with health issues. Yes, not the most original personality trait for a doctor, but I think it made her an effective character. It's like how Worf was so obsessed with combat and war.

    Whenever there was an issue to be discussed at the meetings, Crusher always took the health-related moral perspective. How is this going to affect peoples' health? Is it going to risk peoples' lives? Can we do things in a way that is less potentially harmful to peoples' health and well-being? Just like how Worf would always think first about how their actions would affect their tactical situation and offensive/defensive strengths in potential battle.

    Some people found this characteristic made Crusher too preachy (and I understand that criticism), but I found it endearing. I also appreciated her love for the theatre (probably influenced/written in because of Gates' McFadden's real passion and talent for dance choreography) as she was always trying to get people (Riker, Geordi, Barclay) to act in plays for her.
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  9. greenguy

    greenguy Commander Red Shirt

    Apr 6, 2010
    Bingo. You took the words out of my mouth.

    Diana Muldaur's really a great actress but her writing and her character were just so out of place for TNG, that Pulaski never really influenced any plot or development. Whereas a hokey back-and-forth about feelings between Bones and Spock worked, the constant Pulaski comments about Data's limitations were not redeeming or very thought-provoking, and this was never going to work anyway because viewers are aware that Data's personal growth is always the stronger and more persistent arc/theme. This made me hate her at first but I grew to appreciate her---like when she tells Picard she's not going to help him out with Lwaxana because he could use the sex as exercise, and when she explains splints to the nurses.

    I think what a lot of users are calling boring or one-dimensional about Crusher is what I personally perceive to be as a deliberate compensation to what happened with Pulaski's character. Crusher was toned down and written to fit in better with the staff. With Pulaski, they tried to bring back a TOS-esque persona, that of the older, blasé, quirky senior officer who never got involved with anything deeply and as a result went nowhere as a character on TNG. I recently watched a bunch of season 2 and cannot remember anything important about Pulaski's life or presence on the Enterprise besides a few funny comments.

    I liked Beverly better as she was a more legitimate counterbalance and complement to the other characters, and her presence and delivery made plots more interesting. She was also certainly better than Troi for me. Cause and Effect and Remember Me are two creepy Crusher episodes that I enjoy very much and feel demonstrate McFadden's abilities.
    Richard S. Ta likes this.
  10. Mary Ann

    Mary Ann Knitting is honourable Admiral

    Apr 16, 2010
    A Canuck in southwest England
    This. The conflict that Pulaski provided, especially with Picard, added a new depth to the show. I was sad to see her leave and Crusher come back, but that may have to do with my dislike of Wesley.
  11. CmndrSela318

    CmndrSela318 Trek BBS Commander Number 318. Red Shirt

    Sep 13, 2009
    Florence, Alabama
    Wesley Crusher. <---There is my 2 word theory on why they brought Dr. Crusher back in season 3, much to the dismay of the Dr. Pulaski fans. The Powers That Be probably thought it was "illogical" to keep mother and son apart for more than one season...at least till Wesley went to Starfleet Academy in season 4, I believe it was.
  12. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Nov 5, 2008
    A type 13 planet in it's final stage
    Pulaski. By far.

    Pulaski came across as a competent doctor.

    Beverlump came across like a half-retarded scarecrow.

    Minus extra points to Beverly for spawning Wesley.
  13. RandyS

    RandyS Vice Admiral Admiral

    Nov 9, 2007
    Actually McFadden was 38 when the first season was made.

    Muldar was the 50 year old during her year on TNG.
  14. Amaris

    Amaris Guest

    Dr. Pulaski, by a long shot. That doesn't mean I dislike Crusher, I don't, it's just that they criminally underused her, and she was scenery more than she was a character. Pulaski, on the other hand, forced you to notice her, and I love that. Plus, if we're going to talk hot, then I present Diana Muldaur, circa 1968:

  15. amusedmaj

    amusedmaj Ensign Newbie

    Jun 5, 2010
    I'm one of those people that liked Pulaski and am not apologizing for it. She had more substance and wasn't a passive-aggressive like Crusher. It would have been interesting to see her develop more in the third season. Perhaps it's because I am a TOS-er and loved the fact that someone who had starred on Star Trek (No colon or subtitle) was going to do TNG.

    I didn't have a problem with Crusher, but I was not one of those fans clamoring for her return back in 1989 and wasn't excited when she came back. In fact, I was pretty disappointed seeing her name in the opening credits during "Evolution" and said, in my 12 year-old voice at the time, "Oh no, this means we're going to have more mother/son stuff on Star Trek." I never liked the Beverly/Wesley dynamic. I thought it was always written badly. I thought the 2nd season was light years better than the first and liked the changes they made to the show. Pulaski, like her or hate her, at least added a new dimension to what was a pretty icy crew. She was also more authoritative and not afraid to stand up to Picard.

    I know that one of the people lobbying for her return was Patrick Stewart because he felt that the addition of her added a certain, as he said, "frisson". Well, that's fine, but their relationship really went nowhere in the following 5 years of the series. The Guinan/Picard dynamic worked better than the Crusher/Picard relationship ever did.

    Well, that is my opinion. I'm sure 99% will disagree, but that's what I think.
  16. jadzia_dax2369

    jadzia_dax2369 Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    hey fellow trekkers

    i would say Crusher.
  17. Volvic

    Volvic Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Apr 15, 2010

    I can't disagree with any of that. As much as I liked Beverly on the odd occasion, not unlike Troi, it seemed she was more plot of a plot device or someone to fling into a romance with the alien of the week with than an actual character at times.

    Pulanski had a gravitas that wouldn't be ignored. Yes she was a Bones rip-off, but then so was practically every other Doctor in every other spin off after TNG.

    Looking back on it now, one of the best things about Pulanski - aside from bringing a little much needed drama in the form of conflict - was that the writers couldn't just push her into the role of a romantic interest and leave it at that.

    Any issues I had with Dr Crusher was from a writing perspective. Usually outside of a Stewart/Spiner/Dorn there was a tendency to neglect the other characters, imo. Crusher was right up there with Troi and La Forge in terms of negligence and pure lazy writing.
  18. Kelso

    Kelso Vice Admiral Admiral

    May 3, 2001
    On the destruct button until the last minute!
  19. kathrynJaneway2

    kathrynJaneway2 Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Apr 16, 2010
    North Yorkshire England
    i liked crusher better she was much better thann the other 1
  20. Pemmer Harge

    Pemmer Harge Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Jun 19, 2009
    Between the candle and the star
    I think I probably like Pulaski better. Crusher had good chemistry with Picard, but Pulaski seemed like a more interesting character and I enjoyed Diana Muldaur's performances a lot.