Why does Harry Kim never get promoted?

Discussion in 'Star Trek: Voyager' started by B. L., Apr 18, 2019.

  1. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Harry Kim isn't without his flaws, but he is a capable officer and by the end of Voyager, he has had years of experience in situautions way more complex and difficult than most officers in Starfleet.

    We see people get field promotions all the time throughout trek, so it is definitely not beyond Janeway's power to do so.

    She's also shown that she can arbitrarily gives out ranks to ex-cons, and even terrorists, and yet, Harry Kim remains an ensign the entire length of the show.

    He has completed the academy, and is shown to be very knowledgeable about getting voyager out of trouble numerous times with his skills. He therefore is officially more qualified than any of the Maqui, yet all of them outrank him.

    Sure, he screws up sometimes, but definitely no worse than Riker, who seems so to get the enterprise nearly destroyed repeatedly due to mistakes.

    Why is Kim never promoted?
     
  2. DonIago

    DonIago Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Because it became a running gag.

    If not before, then certainly after Paris was both demoted and then re-promoted.
     
  3. Kemaiku

    Kemaiku Admiral Admiral

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    Look, it's either waste replicator power on a new uniform for him or more torpedoes.

    Which do you need more.
     
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  4. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I read someone it's because of the relationship between Garrett Wang and the producers.

    Which makes sense I guess, but not sure how taking it out on the character they created is helping anything.
     
  5. Bad Thoughts

    Bad Thoughts Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Because the more things change, the more Rick Berman insists they stay the same.
     
  6. GulBahana

    GulBahana Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I don't think Wang got along with Berman.
     
  7. Refuge

    Refuge Vice Admiral Admiral

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    He hadn't earned it. Not everyone moves through the ranks and although there are field promotions they should be reserved for special circumstances.
     
  8. Ghislaine H. B. BRAEME

    Ghislaine H. B. BRAEME Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I wonder if Harry Kim only realized how lucky he was to hold the position he had on Voyager on a social and relational aspects, despite his young age and lack of experience. The only thing which crossed his mind during the 7 years was to obtain this extra pip of Lieutenant and for what? Being more respected by others ? He was. Showing how competent he was in his area? Janeway often congratulated him for his work.

    For me, he was hell of lucky to be surrounded by competent people who were able to guide him throughout the journey, allowing him to remain in good shape to be able to see Voyager coming home (I remind that Harry nearly died several times and was always saved at the very last time. some others weren't as lucky as him! :rolleyes:). Harry Kim is or just behave as a spoiler ki forgetting the most important : being alive and gain experience!
     
  9. at Quark's

    at Quark's Commodore Commodore

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    It wouldn't have made any difference for his job.

    Then again, neither did it seem to make any difference for Paris when he was demoted and then promoted again, but it still was done, so in itself, that's no reason to not promote Kim.
     
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  10. Starflight

    Starflight Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I wonder if they'd even care about ranks anymore after a certain length of time being stuck away from Starfleet. Janeway's talk about how we're "still Federation officers!!", which thankfully reduced a lot after the first couple seasons, always rang hollow to me. Voyager is clearly something like a privateer ship, and everyone just agrees to follow Janeway's orders because they have no idea else what to do, and she's the sort of person you'd probably want leading you home.

    Tom's demotion and promotion really did amount to absolutely nothing. He's still just the same guy who has to do a 12 hour piloting shift followed immediately by a 12 hour sickbay shift in his relentless 24-hour sleep-free schedule, no matter what rank he ostensibly is.
     
  11. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    What about worf or geordi early on?

    They got promoted quite early and didn't seem to do much either in the first or second season.
     
  12. Ghislaine H. B. BRAEME

    Ghislaine H. B. BRAEME Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And what about if Harry's fate - not being promoted - was linked to the way his performer behaved on behind the scenes?! (would we really like to promote a guy who mess with the production and his acting work? The answer is no!)
    -> Chakotay was promoted too, like B'Elena and Tom Paris but in Janeway's mind, all that was temporary, the time of the journey. Of course, she could have done the same with Harry but well, she chose to treat him as more than a simple Enseign in words and facts. This is not insignificant!
     
  13. Zander

    Zander Ensign Red Shirt

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    The actor himself talked about this in interviews. He said he'd asked the creators and been told "someone has to be the ensign". But maybe they didn't like him because they also denied him the opportunity to direct an episode. He was kinda unprofessional during the show's filming, often talking to the media about his dissatisfaction with everything.

    I like Kim but not everyone gets promoted, that's just life. Wang was lucky. He was a young, new-ish actor and landed a long-term role as a bridge crewmember on a Star Trek show! There are worse gigs to have but he complains like he was a redshirt in TOS.
     
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  14. Kor

    Kor Admiral Admiral

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    Yay, it's time for the bi-monthly discussion of Harry's lack of promotion. :beer:

    I could be mis-remembering some of the details, but someone here once said that they worked at a coffee stand around LA during Voyager's initial broadcast. Garret Wang came in one day, and s/he rang up the order and made the coffee, all the while pretending not to recognize him.... then, Just as he was leaving, said "I hope you get promoted soon!" :lol:

    Kor
     
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  15. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    You would think that being likely stranded without returning home within their lifetimes, morale would be a big thing. Promotions are good for morale. Even if temprory, the reality is a field commission would in effect be permanent because they weren't returning for 75 years. And if they did return early, I feel Starfleet would trust Janeway's assessment and allow the promotions.

    That's all in-lore though.

    I can see how producers punishing a poor actor using the character as the proxy, but that just punishes the audience too, and reflects more on Janeway/Chakotay than Kim.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
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  16. Kor

    Kor Admiral Admiral

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    From what I understand, in the actual navy, an officer will pretty much rise to the rank of Lieutenant just by consistently doing a good job; serious disciplinary issues may prevent the promotion. Starfleet may be a little different. But if blue shirt Picard can be a Lt. (j.g.), surely Harry has some merit?

    Kor
     
  17. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    I think "following the rules" all got thrown out the window the moment Janeway put terrorists in positions of power above legitimate Starfleet officers.

    There's no logical reason she shouldn't have also "bent the rules" to recognize her actual crew with promotions.

    Take B'Elanna for example, she was an academy washout with disciplinary issues. She didn't even graduate officer training school, yet she was given a full Lt field commission.

    By all rights, Harry is more qualified than she is.
     
  18. B. L.

    B. L. Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Actually the dumbest part is the fact she gave Maqui authority at all.

    They should have been given consultation status only.

    What about the enlisted personnel? Is it fair for them to take orders from terrorists?
     
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  19. Refuge

    Refuge Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The Maquis were given provisional rank but it was pretty obvious their integration into the Voyager chain of command was born of necessity. If they were not part of the 'solution' (a full crew complement) they would've been a problem. Tom Paris being the flight controller also filled a slot. Harry was an ensign and he remained one just as most of the crew remained the rank they were.

    Tuvok got a promotion. He earned it.
     
  20. Starflight

    Starflight Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I know, right? Voyager really works best if you just sort of imagine that the Maquis under Chakotay's command just sort of flew around being nice and not really doing anything too violent or awful. Except for the time B'Elanna reprogrammed that missile.
     
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