Since I'm board and I assume it's harcore Trekkies here, I thought I'd incite a debate...

I Personally like Picard much more tactful and less inhibited by emotion, duty always came first....(also C'mon Ptrick Stewert)...lol :)

 

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I wrote about this some time back, though where, I'm not 100% certain.

Kirk and Picard obviously have two very different styles, both personal and professional. I submit that Kirk's shoot-from-the-hip approach was very much a product of the time and the space that he operated in. There were 12 Constitution-class starships in the fleet back then and presumably they were the best Starfleet could field at that time. We all remember Scotty, the "miracle worker," who used his considerable engineering acumen to find a solution where none had existed, frequently turning the ship's wiring inside-out in the process. His actions were very often the product of the relative scarcity of those starships and the fact that backup was a luxury a starship captain rarely if ever enjoyed.

That being the case, Kirk bent the rules as he saw fit. Certainly the Prime Directive was important to him, but so was his crew and their well being. Kirk was also occasionally faced with Starfleet personnel who were nowhere near so dedicated to Starfleet regulations as he was, such as Captain Tracy of "The Omega Glory" or John Gill of "Patterns of Force." Faced with those situations, he did what he always did: improvise. Let us note as well that he wasn't always successful, either, as evinced by "A Private Little War."

If Picard can be more diplomat than pugilist, it's because he sits on the shoulders not just of James T. Kirk, but of a Starfleet that is orders of magnitude larger than what little Kirk had behind him. The Galaxy-class Enterprise-D dwarfs the original in virtually every category. Though Picard's Enterprise retains the old designation NCC-1701D, many of its fellows run to FIVE digits in their call signs (suggesting CONSIDERABLE numbers!) and Starfleet in Picard's day is apparently able to build ships to any task or purpose perhaps not quite in the time it takes to talk about it. When you have that kind of weight behind you, diplomacy becomes far easier to employ, and the last resort of force may not have to come quite so readily to hand.

Kirk was the marshal of a considerable territory which too well resembled the Old West and was frequently hostile, and he was tasked multiple times with keeping the peace on his own, with only his crew and his savvy as resources. Picard by comparison is more the Director in Charge of a branch of the FBI, with personnel and resources at his command which Kirk could hardly dream of, let alone rely on. It's possible that, faced with the environment the other lived and worked in, both Kirk and Picard could adapt to those circumstances and very likely would function as brilliantly as they did in their own milieu.

Each were men of their time ... and personally, I think comparisons that don't take that into account are more than a little foolish.

Wow, Loren. You've said far more articulately what I would have liked to say.

I agree about Picard - he seemed more business like and less brash and spontaneous than Kirk. Picard I think was a better captain - even though I do like Kirk too. Picard is more cool and thoughtful.

Frankly, Picard behaved like a captain, a man with responsibilities. Kirk would never have been more than a lt. commander.

That is true Stephen.

 No way,.. get real, Lt. commander Kirk? Poppycock! Here's the real deal. I like them both, but, when it comes right down to it, while Picard's negotiating, Kirk's already on his way to his next assignment, having let his phasers and photon torpedoes do his talking. Mr. L. Miller's statement sums this argument up pretty well, I think.  Even though he makes a strong point, I'd like to suggest that taking in consideration the difference in the two time periods, Kirk would surely do well in Picard's time, whereas, Picard would fail miserably in Kirk's period. Picard probably could excel in something medial, such as, ship's housekeeping, since Kirk's ship was not self cleaning,but, he'd surely get his ass kicked as Captain. He would stand no chance, whatsoever, if faced with defending against an enemy, such as the Gorn, much less winning! Kirk always knows what he's doing, and, did a splendid job of "formally" welcoming President Lincoln aboard his Enterprise. So, he's got what it takes !  That's my take,..it ain't pretty, but it's lively. Maybe the good doctor can now stop laughing long enough to read my comment,...Hey doc, I'm disagreeing with someone !

lol well it is isn't much of a debate if we all agree HAHA @ Loren is that how they get the call signs on ships? I've loved Star Trek and navel history my entire life..never knew that..

As far as the NCC designations are concerned, all I can do is comment on what I see on the hulls of their ships. The USS Defiant carries the designation: NCC-74205 and Voyager: NCC-74656. I'm not suggesting that there are over 70,000 ships in Starfleet. It may be they have a convention of using certain leading numbers for classes of ships, where the leading numbers "742" indicate the Defiant-class and "746" is reserved for Intrepid-class ships such as Voyager. Upon further examination, though, I note that the USS Sao Paolo, which which was renamed "Defiant" after the original Defiant was destroyed, carried the designation NCC-75633, so consistency was not the chief consideration, at least not among the people doing the ship modeling! Still, it suggests a far larger fleet of available vessels than what was available 80 years previous.

Thus, I stand by my statement. Were Picard tasked with captaining the original USS Enterprise in the world of the 23rd century, certainly his skills at diplomacy would have found considerable use. The fact remains that the Alpha Quadrant in those days was far more uncontrolled and violent than when he flew with the Enterprise-D and available resources were far smaller. His style and actions would have to change accordingly.

lol love youre reply! yeah I've always assumed Starfleet was much larger than depicted (especially in TOS/earlyTNG) so perhaps the numbers were the number of ships in the Class? the 1701 designation carrying on a historical tradition. yes more than likely under budget art departments are to blamed lol..

Kirk was brash and defiant of protcol because he was confident and while the Prime Directive applyed to him by Picards time starfleet had a century and a half to learn and refine. Picard however, was forced into some very comprimising positions and still acted according to his duty as captain, even showing his (repressed) humanity. So I submit that reason as why he's my favourite captain.

(also like Janeway but for different reasons that don't pretain to this lol)

 

I am also a Janeway man. These captain's name take some getting used to for me. Janeway sounds natural now, but, I can't recall ever knowing of any "real life" Janeways. Same with Archer, except that Archer is a much more common name. Picard,Sisko, same thing. Now Kirk, on the other hand, fit from the get go for me, even though I never met anyone named Kirk in real life. Guess he is the all time ST icon. For me anyways ! later doc.

As a feminist I identified the most with a female captain.

Many people feel as we do,Ruth. Captain Janeway fought like a Gamecock, trigger happy as much, if not more than Kirk ever was, reinforcing my earlier, over eager statement, in which I declare Kirk a better captain than Picard,yet, I desire to be flexible enough to admire them all, absolutely including Picard. Although Voyager's adventure takes it's crew to the distant Delta Quadrant, I'll go out on a limb, and, assume that space is space, which could lead one to assume that, time is time, as well. They all made empty promises of mankind's maturing, no longer being warlike creatures, while their opponents were either constantly engaging or retreating, as well as Star Fleet. Putting that discussion aside, Captain Janeway was, in my humble opinion, the most calculating of them all! 

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