Thursday, March 24, 2011

Timewalking Archive Trap: Star Trek: The Perfect Crew, Decidination

Last time, I was trying to nail down just what factors I needed for my Star Trek dream crew. This week, I'm actually making the calls.

Eligible Candidates: Kirk, Picard, Sisko, Archer, Data, Riker, Spock, Sulu, Nog(future Nog), Jadzia Dax, Worf, Kira Nerys, Chakotay, Crusher.

After mentioning future Nog, I need to bring up the fact that since I'm looking at TOS, TNG, and Enterprise, then I'm also taking the liberty(though not to any great length) of selecting people at different phases of their lives. A young ensign Kirk working under a Captain Data might be interesting, or even try Commander Sisko riding shotgun XO under Captain James T. --oh, just geek-gasmed.

Kirk is great, but he, Picard, and Sisko all fall aside under another surprise criterion; that of something new to explore. We've covered a lot of ground on Kirk, Picard, Spock, Kira, and Sisko. Archer? I'm not enamored with. He comes off being pretty whiny. I actually like alternate universe Archer because he's a dumb goddamm brute who got lucky, but we're not doing alternate universe here. Data sucks. I want to say that now. I loved him as a kid, but he's useless. Either we're going to get him fully developed (and at that point, what is the point? I guess he can be a 'well-adjusted' android...), or still 'Data,' which couldn't put him in the Captain's chair. I don't want Worf in the big chair, the man's roles are skitzo enough that I wouldn't want to saddle him with another one. In addition, his blazing crazy Klingon side does exist and...well, he might make a good second officer. Someone to wreck the ship in every movie since Riker isn't around. PS: Riker is out. He sucks. What did he ever fucking do besides suck and die? That leaves me Sulu, Dax, and Chakotay. (Crusher is out too. She was only in because she is a Commander and she commanded a ship in "All Good Things." She's out because she becomes a shrill bitch and doesn't do anything but bitch, bitch, bitch!)

I'm gonna go with Chakotay. All I ever saw him do in Voyager was nod and 'me too' Janeway in Voyager...also, trite Indian things. I think there's more of a character there than we got to see. As someone who has decent leadership presence, but still went Maquis, I do like him. For a government that plays Pepsi to the Federation's Coke, I think he fits in well.
Captain: Chakotay

Engineering: Data, Scotty, Spock, Geordi, Wesley Crusher, B'lanna Torres, Seven of Nine, Kathryn Janeway, Miles O'Brien, Rom, Kevin Riley, Jadzia Dax. First, let's get one thing straight. Geordi LaForge was the third best engineer on that ship; maybe fourth, depending on just how good O'Brien was with warp engines. Geordi's a good guy, but he's surrounded by fucking prodigies. In "Relics," I think his ego underwent a complete implosion. He's an adequate engineer, but I'm not putting together an 'adequate' crew. I've made my feelings about Data clear.

I'd like a chance for Torres and Crusher to redeem themselves, they could both use it, but I'll pass. Torres is the only Klingon I've ever seen to somehow get bogged down in 'Klingon'ness and she's the type of woman that loves the taste of barf mixed with industrial runoff. Seven and Janeway are right out. I'm thinking about putting them both in every lineup just to erase them, but I'll erase them now and forever by mentioning how developed they are, how everything about them has been covered in detail and they'd be a painful rehash at this point. Sadly, the same goes for Spock.

Rom, Riley, Wesley, and Scotty are on deck now, and y'know what? When I line them up this way it's obvious; Scotty over the competition, even if they were borged into a single, annoying hivemind(Riley stays on for being the first starfleet officer to ever hijack a starship...while drunk.). Not because he's the best (though he is), but because there's still a lot of Scott ground to cover.
Chief Engineer: Montgomery Scott

Tactical: Checkov, Worf, O'Brien, Jadzia Dax, Worf, Tuvok, Tasha Yar. Worf and Checkov are both out; being even-headed is one of the things I listed above, and as twichy as they both are, I couldn't imagine their fingers hovering over the photon controls when someone is trying to face down a pair of Romulan warbirds in the Neutral Zone. I'm not saying they're incompetent, just...twitchy. O'Brien is both a soldier and an Ops man, he's certainly fired his fair share of weapons, but it's not his thing. Same goes for Dax. I just don't see it. That leaves Tasha Yar and Tuvok. *sigh* Tasha Yar, we hardly knew thee. Tuvok on the other hand, spent seven years being a 'token Vulcan-guy.' We don't see enough pointy ears, but...Tasha Yar did die like a bitch. She deserves some redemption...but ultimately, she's a beat-em-up type, not a 'phasers are firing' type.
Tactical: Tuvok

Security/Operations: Checkov, Worf, O'Brien, Jadzia Dax, Worf, Tasha Yar, Wesley Crusher, Data, Michael Eddington, Odo, Nog, Harry Kim. Harry Kim is living weaksauce and is immediately stricken. We eliminate Dax again. Checkov, Yar, Worf, O'Brien, and Odo are all men who are tough-as-nails as well as not being to shabby on the uptake.That said, I'm not sure what qualifies Checkov as being 'tough-as-nails,' or Worf as 'not being to shabby on the uptake.' O'Brien's a war hero.Yar is cool enough that she has honorary 'man' status.

Eddington is a fun one. We certainly don't know much about him. He's cunning. Dangerous. Morally brave. Almost sexily so. We also don't know much about him, something we can't say about Odo or O'Brien. Seriously, what would you do with O'Brien or Odo in a new ongoing series? As much as I like both (I think O'Brien's been in most categories so far and might even be in more, if only out of courtesy), we've really seen the characters run their course. Tasha Yar, Wes--okay, Wes is out. Data might be technically competent, but he's a boring ubercharacter and he's out of all considerations ever as of now.

That leaves Yar, Eddington, and Nog. Nog is pretty cool. He's eager to please, but he's also competent and battle-hardened. Eddingston is an absolute terror... Final conclusion: Yar. Eddington is featured as a villain, only to reveal his status as friendly plant at a crucial moment and vanish into the shadows, appearing once a year thereafter for a fun episode of intrigue and questioning loyalties. Nog is screwed because he's a recurring DS9 character and already has a lot of development under his belt.
Security/Ops: Yar

Navigation/Helm: The ship's pilot, eh? Riker? No. Paris? No. Young Picard? Eeeeeeh No. Jadzia Dax? No. O'Brien? Qualified, but only here as a courtesy. Sulu? Hmmmm. Ro Laren? Hmmmm! Goddammit! Making me choose between Ro Laren and Hikaru Sulu! It's a brain-aneurysm! I mean, Sulu is the better pilot, but Ro was pretty cool and we hardly knew her! She resurfaces later as the tough-as-hell Captain of the Pegasus in the new Battlestar Galactica. He turns up on Howard Stern and Heroes! Can't....choose!

Okay, Ro. I like them both, and they both deserve more time, but I'm gonna go with my gut on this one. Ro Laren. She's more of a rebel, and I can totally dig that.
Nav/Helm: Ro

Sensors/Science: Uhura, Worf, Data, Harry Kim, Seven of Nine, Kathy Janeway, Wesley, Geordi, Jadzia Dax, Spock, O'Brien, Tuvok. Okay, that leaves Uhura and Worf. When someone says Science, I don't think Worf. Sorry.
Sensors/Science: Uhura

Chief Medical Officer: McCoy, Pulaski, EMH, Crusher, Bashir, Troi? Ezri? EMH and Crusher are right out. Troi and Ezri are just here for laughs(LOL, aliens!). That leaves Pulaski, Bashir, and McCoy. Gimme a young Pulaski. It's not that I don't like McCoy, it's that he's already been covered pretty well and Bashir...he's no competition for Pulaski.
CMO: Doctor Pulaski

Civilian: This is my wildcard. Naturally, Garak, Harry Mudd, Guinan, Keiko O'Brien, Wesley Crusher, Jake Sisko, Quark, Morn, Neelix, Kes, and/or a civilan version of any other character. The role of this character is pretty ill-defined; they're there to give the military types an outside perspective. Granted, this isn't a very formal military organization, but it still represents someone outside of this. Anyway, despite all of the characters who've fallen by the wayside because of being overdeveloped, I'm going straight with a thoughtless fave on this one: Elim Garak. He has a mysterious air about him that works in a 'young nation' setting, as he can represent the cynical, self-interested pitfalls inherent in these things. Whatever corrupt organization sits at the root of this not-Federation, it's put Garak on this ship, whether he's loyal to its interests or not.
Civilian: Garak

The only real question left is who my XO is. Pulaski, Garak, and Ro are right out. Doctors and civilians don't make good commanders in Star Trek, and conn is usually a lower-ranking position. That leaves Uhura, Scotty, Yar, or Tuvok as my XO....maybe Yar, if she's a bit older. Scotty's going to be in engineering most of the time, so it's not him. Uhura or Tuvok. My gut's telling me Uhura.

The ranks are incongruous. The Voyager pair are post-series. Ro Laren is certainly straight out of TNG, sans her Maquis sympathies. Uhura is from the Wrath of Khan period, and Scotty is younger Scotty from the series(was he a Lieutenant or a Lieutenant Commander during the series?). Tasha Yar is Tasha Yar if she hadn't been mauled while trying to flank a tar baby. I'm saying this is Pulaski's first tour as a ship's Chief Medical Officer. Garak? Young Garak. Just watched Dirty Harry recently and still thinking of young Andrew Robinson.

Not pictured:
Engineering: LT Montgomery Scott
Medical: LT Katherine Pulaski
???: Elim Garak


skiltao said...

It might be interesting to create a whole "redeem themselves" ship to stick Torres and Crusher on, to play the foil to your titular ship.

It's fitting that you picked all of the renegade characters for your not-Federation crew. But you realize that Ro Laren and Kira are both basically Tasha Yar redux, right?

Also, just because.

VanVelding said...

Your comment got caught in the spam filter and I just now got it out. :( Sorry.

I could see going with Torres over Scotty, but man, Crusher? Crusher?

I'll also concede Laren/Kira/Yar as "tough chicks with bad histories" and in Yar's case, bad futures.

VanVelding said...

Nice video too. Thanks.

skiltao said...

Spam filter just means I'll forget to check for replies (whoops). No worries.

I meant you take the crew you picked and their ship (did you pick a ship for them, by the way? I'm unreasonably fond of Archer's Enterprise- smallish and oldish could be a good fit for your non-Federation nation) and set them aside. From everyone that's left, make a second crew to stick Torres and Crusher on. Dunno what you'd need two engineers for. or how you'd clip Wesley's wings, though.

Of all the tough personalities and bad histories around, Yar, Yar Strikes Back and Return of Yar were lucky enough to draw the same ones. ;)

Also, I nearly didn't recognize her, but Kira also turned up on BattleStar Galactica (in sickbay for an episode).

skiltao said...

OR I could have kept scrolling to see you'd picked a Nebula class. Bump the Archer-universe Enterprise to my Redemption crew, I guess.

VanVelding said...

Yeah, I could see a SS Redemption crew. A motley group of hard-bitten conscripts/privateers exerting the authority of some totalitarian government that's a piece in the chessboard of post-Dominion Alpha Quadrant politics.

It's actually more mirror universe than anything else because I do kind of hate/despise every character on the list.

CDR Jadzia Dax (CO/Science), LCDR Harry Kim (XO/Operations), LT Torres (Engineering), Crewman Kathryn Janeway (general duties and problem solving/making), LT Wesley Crusher (Tactical/Weapons Systems), DR Beverly Crusher (CMO/Exosciences), Jake Sisko (Intelligence/Political Officer)

Oh, and I might actually make a thing out of both this and your Kira/Yar/Ro slanders.

Yes, slanders! ;)