Thursday, June 09, 2011

Star Trek: Redemption Crew, pt 01

Some time ago, I mentioned my dream Star Trek crew. They were a diverse group of characters who had more promise behind them than in front of them (with the exception of Elim Garak because…c’mon, Elim Garak). They’d patrol around a B-string space government on the IDP A’kweth and perform interdiction, defense, and protection missions largely involving peacekeeping, diplomacy, problem solving, and everything short of exploration (though a ‘wormhole’ or ‘New Frontier’ situation wouldn’t be out of the question.). The results:

CO: CAPT Chakotay (post-Voyager)
XO/Science:  CDR Nyota Uhuru (pre-TOS)
Ops: LCDR Natasha Yar (post-TNG, didn’t die[1])
Tactical: LCDR Tuvok (pre-Voyager. Dude was in Starfleet for sixty friggin’ years)
Engineering: LT Scott (pre-TOS)
Medical: LT Katherine Pulaski (pre-TNG)
Conn: ENS Ro Laren (TNG era)
Other: Elim Garak (pre-DS9)
Skiltao then suggested a crew of hated characters given a chance to redeem themselves in this same setting. Of course, because they’re primarily science/engineering/fiat class characters, they’d have to be nigh-alternate universe characters. None the less, I did manage to put together a crew of characters I absolutely hated as they were presented to me by Star Trek canon. Except Jake. DS9 was woefully, predictably underrepresented here and he’s included under the aegis that a lot of my dream crew was; I never got to see him enough.

The Pitch:
SS Redemption, a motley group of bitter conscripts/privateers exerting the authority of a totalitarian government that's merely a piece on the chessboard of post-Dominion Alpha Quadrant politics and largely opposed to the faction that our protagonists are working for.

CO/Science: Captain Jadzia Dax (post-DS9, didn’t die)
XO/Operations: LT Harry Kim (post-Voyager)
Engineering: LT Torres (Voyager era)
General duties: Crewman Kathryn Janeway (teenage problem solver/maker)  (pre-Voyager)
Tactical/Weapons Systems: LT Wesley Crusher (late-TNG era)
CMO/Exosciences: DR Beverly Crusher (pre-TNG. Don’t ask.)
Intelligence/Political Officer: Jake Sisko (DS9 era)
Redemption’s disembodied AI: Seven of Nine (post-Voyager)

While the good guys generally respond to problems and do standard ship missions, they run into Redemption at the odd corners of the galactic neighborhood. Redemption’s government doesn’t care about what technically belongs to anyone else and is always quick to make up an excuse to have ships where they aren’t supposed to; their ethos it that if you can’t defend it, they deserve to have it.

The Redemption crew aren’t big lovers of who they’re working for, but they’re one half coerced and one half happy to be able to do as they please with their masters only occasionally pulling the strings. Ultimately, Redemption has just as much autonomy as A’kweth; it’s what they do with it that distinguishes them. They’re a model in corruption and indifference; leaders who are only loyal to themselves tend to have followers who are the same way.

While the crew of Redemption aren’t evil, they are bad people, but redeemable. I haven’t seen a lot of “Firefly,” but it’s like if you took that crew and nudged it to just the other far side of ‘good.’ Don’t underestimate them, though; regardless of their Federation origins, most of these characters have had nothing and have few illusions about what they do have lasting forever; they are desperate, cunning, and opportunistic. I like the idea of giving them an actual, ancient NX-class vessel to tool around with, but they still manage to elude/evade A’kweth when things come to blows. They are frequently outgunned by anyone of any class, which makes them bullies and forces them to act like cowards. They are, to some degree, but they’re also dirty, dirty fighters and won’t hesitate to force a more compassionate crew to make the choice between destroying them and letting them go.

Next week is Review Week, but the week after that, I'll have character rundowns.


skiltao said...

Redemption's government sounds like original flavor Klingons.

I whole-heartedly approve of Jake Sisko's assignment. The more Jake and Nog appeared in an episode, the more I hated the episode, but the more Bashir and Garak appeared together (forerunners to your Intelligence/Political office, I assume) the better. Setting up Jake in opposition to Garak was an interesting move, but the thought of teen Janeway making eyes at Jake (or Wesley) gives me the heebie jeebies. Actually, most of this crew's relationships -romantic or otherwise- give me the heebie jeebies.

By the way, why does Redemption get a split CO/SCIENCE? This crew can ad hoc science almost as well as The Next Generation, and sound like they need a firmer hand on their reins. I can see how you'd want a science console available to the bridge, but unless it's integrated to the Captain's chair, isn't Jadzia leaving one of those two chairs (both literally and figuratively) empty?

Random thoughts about your first crew:

1- Your choice of a starship is extra fitting, since the Enterprise D never separated its saucer section all that much and the Nebula's modules offer similar opportunities.

2- I just realized that your Perfect Crew can look forward to seeing Tasha Yar snap "Ro in half like a wrinkle-nosed slim-jim(TM) thirty seconds after she came on board." :-D

3- From the positions you listed, it sounds like you're continuing TNG's policy of making Comms accessible from both Ops and Tactical?

4- Your crews include Federation separatists, Maquis, and breakaway Cardassians. That seems to center their Confederation on a particular region of space.

5- The Underlier? Is this a "New Frontiers" thing?

VanVelding said...

I don't anticipate a lot of science needing to be done an a errand ship like Redemption; it's a part time job.

3-Hadn't thought about it.

4-Well, the Star Trek series tends to draw from that same corner.

5-That comes dangerously close to asking what the point of all of this is. Let's just pretend that ever since celebrity twitter accounts became a thing, I've felt someone needed to nerd the internet up again.

skiltao said...

Ah! Fair enough, on all counts.

3- Yeah, I wouldn't have noticed it if I hadn't rewatched a *bunch* of Star Trek last year.