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Old 02-21-2019, 09:32 PM
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Nate the Great Nate the Great is offline
Knate airrant
Join Date: Mar 2004
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February 21st, 1969, "The Way to Eden"

Fiver (by IJD GAF)
Memory Alpha

The Episode

Captain's log, stardate 5832.3. The son of the Catullan ambassador is one of six we have beamed aboard from the stolen cruiser Aurora. We have been ordered to handle him with extreme delicacy, because the treaty negotiations now in progress between the Federation and Catualla are in a crucial phase.

This disturbs me. I get that diplomatic immunity has to exist for ambassadors who are doing their jobs. I don't think that should extend to family members, especially when said family members are nowhere near the ambassador. (Irrelevant aside, do you know about the time when James Brown (the "Ambassador of Soul")'s wife tried the diplomatic immunity gambit to beat traffic charges?)

To save space, let's just say that in any rational world these guys would be in the brig within the hour for stealing the ship, refusing to reply when hailed, resisting arrest, disobeying ship's security, etc. And this need to arrest and confine will occur over and over for the rest of the episode.

CHEKOV: Sir, I believe I know one of them. At least, I think I recognise her voice. Her name is Irina Galliulin. We were in Starfleet Academy together.
KIRK: One of those was in the Academy?

This level of prejudice seems disjointed with Gene's vision of the future. Just because she's a hippie doesn't mean she can't be smart or disciplined when she wants to.

KIRK: Mister Spock, do they really believe that Eden exists?
SPOCK: Many myths are based on truth, Captain.

This sentiment appears may times all over the scifi genre and I hate it. If any "truth" was the start of a myth, it's so minor and removed from the present state of the myth that it's irrelevant.

KIRK: Doctor Sevrin is their leader?
SPOCK: Yes. A brilliant research engineer in the fields of acoustics, communications and electronics on Tiburon. He was dismissed from his post when he started this movement.

This confuses me. Was he fired for having unconventional philosophical beliefs, or for starting a quest that seems rather peaceful? The only threat seems to be from his disease. And by the by, there has to be a Federation world that is mostly untamed nature but still has an outpost to give him his booster shots, right?

SPOCK: There are many who are uncomfortable with what we have created. It is almost a biological rebellion. A profound revulsion against the planned communities, the programming, the sterilised, artfully balanced atmospheres.

This is a good idea to ponder. Even today we occasionally need to escape from technology and return to nature. I'm also reminded of Riker in "Time Squared"...

DATA: This is not an efficient method of preparing sustenance.
RIKER: Oh, you're right, Data. The ship's computer would be more efficient, but it wouldn't allow for the subtlety needed for great cooking. It would give you all of the ingredients in predetermined measurements, but it wouldn't allow for flair or individuality.

KIRK: The cave is deep in our memory.
SPOCK: Yes, that is true, Captain.

In this context the word "cave" brings to mind Plato's cave, but I don't think that's what was intended.

CHEKOV: Why did you do it?
IRINA: Why did you?
CHEKOV: I am proud of what I am. I believe in what I do. Can you say that?

You may remember when I stumped the quote thread with this exchange. Chekov's message means something to me. We should all be proud (in the most positive sense of course) of what we are and believe in what we do.

MCCOY: But a regular programme of shots is necessary. I'll have to check everyone on the ship. There could be some skips. In the meantime, he should be placed in total isolation.
SEVRIN: This is outrageous. You're not isolating me, you're imprisoning me. You invent a crime, find me guilty and sentence me!

Sevrin, you are already guilty of crimes that are on the books. And this crime is not invented, it's also on the books! Shut up about being a wronged party!

KIRK: If it weren't for that ambassador's son, they'd all be in the brig.

Okay, so the ambassador's son is somehow immune, he seems to forget that the rest aren't! It stands to reason that he would choose to be in a cell with his people rather than all alone on the outside.

SEVRIN: Because this is poison to me. This stuff you breathe, this stuff you live in, the shields of artificial atmosphere that we have layered about every planet. The programs in those computers that run your ship and your lives for you, they bred what my body carries. That's what your science have done to me.

Here we go....

Accusation One: "This stuff you breath". You mean...unpolluted air? Is he accusing the Federation of putting docileness-inducing gases in the manufactured air?

Accusation Two: "The shield of artificial atmosphere that we have layered about every planet." This is patently absurd. The Federation would only colonize worlds that are Class M, and more specifically a comfortable subset of Class M. Perhaps a few planets have a few plants that inject a little extra oxygen into the atmosphere, but that's not a "shield of artificial atmosphere".

Accusation Three: "The programs in those computers that run your ship and your lives for you." Starfleet ships are not Borg cubes! If he means something akin to Sojef in Insurrection ("We believe when you create a machine to do the work of a man, you take something away from the man."), they could've been clearer about this.

RAD: Can you suggest any special ways to swing them?
ADAM: Just be friendly. You know how to be friendly. Then they'll be friendly.

It's a rare event when someone can sound sinister by declaring that they're going to be friendly. This may be a bad episode, but you can't dispute that they didn't know how to write multidimensional characters.

MCCOY: All this plant life is full of acid. Even the grass, Jim.

I'll just refer you to SF Debris' review to explain how stupid this is.

The Fiver

Chekov: Captain, I think I know one of those hippies. Her name was Irini Galliulin. She and I were in the Academy together.
Kirk: One of those was in the Academy?
Chekov: Yes sir. Just think of them as a proto-Maquis.
Kirk: I'd rather not.

That metaphor doesn't really work.


Chekov's hand is burned by the acidic plants. I never noticed how fake his scream sounds, it reminds me of Benedick trying to sound like a bird in Much Ado About Nothing.
The meaning of Herbert
mudshark: Nate's just being...Nate.
Zeke: It comes nateurally to him.

mudshark: I don't expect Nate to make sense, really -- it's just a bad idea.

Sa'ar Chasm on the forum: Sit back, relax, and revel in the insanity.

Adam Savage: I reject your reality and substitute my own!

Hanlon's Razor: Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity.

Crow T. Robot: Oh, stop pretending there's a plot. Don't cheapen yourself further.
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