Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Star Trek by the Minute 090: Your Mother!

Spock turns to Scotty and asks: "Are you a member of Starfleet?"

Scotty stammers: "Ah, mm, uh, um...yes. Can I get a towel please?"  in another failed attempt at non-sequitur humor. 

"Under penalty of court martial, I order you to explain to me how you were able to beam aboard this ship while moving at warp."  That's pretty clear: the ship's skipper, it's ranking officer, and an officer senior to Scott has made it very clear that this is a direct order, Scott must answer or be censured.

"Well..." Scott begins, when Kirk interrupts with "Don't answer him."

"You will answer me." Spock growls.

"I'd rather not take sides" smirks Scott in another bad attempt at non-sequitur humor.  Taking sides between Spock and Kirk is not an issue when a direct order has been issued, anyone can see that failure to obey is making a decision for which Scott is responsible.

The "security" personnel redshirts allow suspended cadet Kirk, previously put off the ship, and whose last appearance on the Bridge was marked by incoherent yelling at the Captain and a fistfight that he started, these guys just allow Kirk to walk to within centimeters of Spock, easily close enough to bite him, without making a move to protect their skipper, the ship, anything. 

"What is it with you Spock?" purrs Kirk, "Your planet was just destroyed, your mother murdered...and you're not even upset."

"If you are presuming to suggest that these experiences in any way impede my ability to command this ship you are mistaken." 

"And yet, you were the one who said fear was necessary for command. I mean, did you see his ship? Did you see what he did?"

"Yes, of course I did."

"So are you afraid or aren't you?"

"I will not allow you to lecture me about the merits of emotion."

"Then why don't you stop me?" taunts Kirk.

"Step away from me Mr. Kirk!"  This is a breaking point in the segment, in my opinion.  There is no reason for Spock to be giving additional orders to Kirk when it had been clearly communicated multiple times that Kirk is deliberately NOT going to obey, and is trying to provoke a confrontation.  The writer's justification is emotional unbalance, but that's a tired excuse that has been trotted out one too many times to rationalize character actions inconsistent with the situation in which they are placed, and which any believable or even likable character would do something very different.  Robau's desertion, George Kirk's suicide, young Kirk's criminality, the bar fight, the "enlistment", the "3-year" bragging, Nero's vengeance, on and on and on irrational emotions are trotted out to justify stupid mistakes resulting from lazy, incompetent writing.

"What is it like not to feel anger, or heartbreak, or the need to stop at nothing to avenge the death of the woman who gave birth to you."

"Back away from me..." Spock rasps dangerously...

"You feel NOTHING!" Kirk starts yelling, "It must not even COMPUTE for you.  You NEVER loved her!" 
Spock yells and takes a CGI swing at Kirk, while the security personnel are completely unprepared for the need of their services with the violent intruder they brought to the bridge.  One might think that the gradual escalation might have tipped them off, even if they had complete amnesia from the last barroom brawl on the Bridge.  Perhaps the non-cooperation of the prisoner? Nope.  What about the defiance? Not a clue.  The threatening approach or the hostile language? The escalation to yelling? Staring right at Kirk, they had no inkling.  It was probably because of some irrational emotions that you just can't question.

No women speak or appear in this segment.

Yet another stupid, unbelievable fistfight on the Enterprise Bridge consumes the duration of our next installment of Star Trek by the Minute 091: Vulcan Fury

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