Star Trek: Questions you always wanted answers to

ALLEY

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
One of my favorite episodes is “Bread and Circuses”. It’s probably one of the best Spock/McCoy banter episodes. 2 huge plot holes have always bothered me.

1. Beaming down with their uniforms on with Phaser II’s...and also taking their resident extra terrestrial with them. All with the Prime Directive “in full effect”.

In the teaser, they watched a news broadcast that clearly showed the planet was a “20th Century Rome”. They also said the “Prime Directive was in full effect”. Yet, they beamed down wearing their crazy space pajamas with visible Phaser II’s velcroed to their hips. Added to that, they took their Vulcan down with them with visible pointed ears.

0DD9059F-D82C-4817-9E7B-E42000E810D0.jpeg


2. What happened to their Phasers and other landing party gear?

When they were captured by the Romans, they had their phasers and other gear taken from them. With the exception of the one communicator that Merricus threw into their cell to allow them to bream up, I have to assume the Roman Empire still has McCoy’s medical gear, Spock’s Tricorder, 2 communicators, and 3 Phaser II’s in their possession to reverse-engineer.

F8C71F20-8FD1-4B13-BB72-3C0016D653B7.jpeg
 
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patrickivan

Sr Member
Yes, but why would he be labelled as property if he was not Starfleet property to begin with? They were telling him he couldn't resign because he was property, but since he was not made out of Starfleet materials, seems there is no way they could label him as such.

Unless, of course, Dr. Singh was part of Starfeet. Was he?
I think there are a lot of over complicated responses.

Starfleet found a piece of technology. That made Data, theirs. They had no property owner to return him to. They never considered him sentient in the legal sense until it became a question of ownership.

I think it was a great episode. Exploring the existential question of life. How Loyalty, friendship, and duty conflict and work together between Picard, Riker, Data, and Starfleet as an entity.

One of my favorite episodes in fact.
 

patrickivan

Sr Member
One of my favorite episodes is “Bread and Circuses”. It’s probably one of the best Spock/McCoy banter episodes. 2 huge plot holes have always bothered me.

1. Beaming down with their uniforms on with Phaser II’s...and also took their resident extra terrestrial with them. All with the Prime Directive “in full effect”.

In the teaser, they watched a news broadcast that clearly showed the planet was a “20th Century Rome”. They also said the “Prime Directive was in full effect”. Yet, they beamed down wearing their crazy space pajamas with visible Phaser II’s velcroed to their hips. Added to that, they took their Vulcan down with them with visible pointed ears.

View attachment 1004978

2. What happened to their Phasers and other landing party gear?

When they were captured by the Romans, they had their phasers and other gear taken from them. With the exception of the one communicator that Merricus threw into their cell to allow them to bream up, I have to assume the Roman Empire still has McCoy’s medical gear, Spock’s Tricorder, 2 communicators, and 3 Phaser II’s in their possession to reverse-engineer.

View attachment 1004979
HAHA... I just noted in the one image:

HANDS UP! But not too high. I don't want to see any bellies!
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
ALLEY, there are so many things wrong with that episode, Prime Directive wonkiness is the least of my concerns. About the only thing I really like from it is the hint that Merik failed the Kobayashi Maru Test.
 

jarroth

Sr Member
Been watching TOS and i wonder about the time index. I do not recall the exact dates but it it seems to go back and forward. One episode: 1256.3, next 1387.7 than 2354.6 back to 1287.4 (as said i do not remember the stardates precisely)

Is that an error or how does the stardate system work?
 

robn1

Master Member
Been watching TOS and i wonder about the time index. I do not recall the exact dates but it it seems to go back and forward. One episode: 1256.3, next 1387.7 than 2354.6 back to 1287.4 (as said i do not remember the stardates precisely)

Is that an error or how does the stardate system work?
The stardates were sequential as the episodes were filmed, but the air dates are out of order. Reruns, and the grouping on home video follow the air dates.
 

Laspector

Master Member
I've never understood how these stardates work. What exactly are they? Did earth just throw away the calendar and start over, or is it the age of whatever star they are near or what?
 
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Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That's NBC airing the episodes out of production order, an artifact for some reason retained with the season/series sets. Watch them in production order.

As for how they work? They don't. At the beginning, it was supposed to be like an Age of Discovery ship's log, in this case months and days into the ship's voyage under Kirk. So "WNMHGB", at 1312, would be just over a year in. And even though it got uncoupled from that, 1200 units a year works better for the episode spans than the TNG era's 1000 units per year. Which is fine because the two don't meet directly anyway. TOS stardates stop making sense after the Enterprise puts in to dock for her refit, and TNG stardates don't start until 2323, almost half a century later.

Add in the Animated Series, though, and Kirk's five-year mission is pretty well documented -- and doesn't line up with either calendar years or TV seasons.
 
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Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Laspector, it's meant to be some universal time index independent of any single planet's local year. As with the warp scale, I can see it getting adjusted as better understanding of of whatever it's based on comes along. But I don't know why it periodically zeroes out.
 

Zombie_61

Master Member
Been watching TOS and i wonder about the time index. I do not recall the exact dates but it it seems to go back and forward. One episode: 1256.3, next 1387.7 than 2354.6 back to 1287.4 (as said i do not remember the stardates precisely)

Is that an error or how does the stardate system work?
I don't remember if there was any form of consistency when the episodes originally aired (or when viewed in the proper sequence), but I once read an explanation that claimed the stardates differed depending on where the ship was in the galaxy because time passes at different rates in different solar systems (in theory, anyway) and this would affect each solar system's calendars and stardates. Of course, this could be nothing more than pseudo-science someone cooked up in conjunction with Time Dilation to explain any discrepancies, but until someone disproves it...
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
That was an explanation Gene pulled out of nowhere when asked at one of the first Trek conventions why the TOS stardates were all over the place. I wish he'd just said "NBC aired them out of order". I dont know what lack of consistency you're talking about. In production order, there's only one issue in three seasons -- an instance where the stardate range of one episode takes place wholly within the stardate range of the one either right before or right after it.

The animated series is a little more of a jumble, but I always felt like it was filling things in rather than specifically resuming the TOS timeline. It did round out the five-year mission, though...

[ETA: The forum software seems to have decided my non-link text is a link. Don't follow it.]
 

Riceball

Master Member
Laspector, it's meant to be some universal time index independent of any single planet's local year. As with the warp scale, I can see it getting adjusted as better understanding of of whatever it's based on comes along. But I don't know why it periodically zeroes out.
It could zero out when it hits a decade or century like our calendar kind of does, that's assuming that stardates don't literally zero out and starts at 0. But it would be very weird and make it hard for Starfleet to keep track of things if all of the stardates were relative to wherever a starship was. They'd always have to convert the stardates into something local or another form of date keeping in order to keep things straight.
 

patrickivan

Sr Member
Whatever happened to phaser 1? Never seemed to see that one after the OS.
TNG used it several times.... Conspiracy and Skin of Evil are a couple that come to mind. Encounter at Farpoint I believe, when Picard points out to Q that the PHASER wasn't set to harm.

I'm trying to recall when used in the later years of TNG, but I think it fell out of fashion because viewers were believed to unaware where the PHASER beam was emitting from.
 

robn1

Master Member
"Last Mission" also used the P1. It didn't get much use though, the new design was so small and kinda beige colored that it didn't show up well. Some people actually thought they were firing phaser beams from their finger tips.
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I think you mean "Final Mission", but that didn't have the TNG hand phaser, just Captain Dirgo's surplus, half-century-or-more-old TSFS style phaser II's. Are you maybe thinking of "The Game", where Wes set a TNG phaser I to randomly fire at a force field to make folks think that's where he was?

But yeah, the TMP/TWOK phaser had a "type I" hand unit, as did the TSFS and TFF/TUC versuons. None were ever employed, though, because of the same producers' fears that the hand unit would be too small to see and confuse viewers... Despite the fact that TOS audiences had no trouble figuring out what was up with 1960s TVs.
 

SethS

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I think the TMP/TWOK/TFF/TUC phasers were all single units, but TSFS one def had the TOS style type one slotted on.
 

Inquisitor Peregrinus

Master Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
The separation line is visible on the original prop:

5YDM1TB.jpg


Though the feature was never used onscreen, Diamond Select accurately reproduced the separate units:

review_khanphaser_large.jpg

And here are a couple shots of the TFF assault phaser hero props:

assault_phaser_03.jpg
assault_phaser_1a.jpeg
 
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Sluis Van Shipyards

Master Member
What was the rationale for the smaller removable phaser anyway? Like you're going to say "Well I don't want to be too noticeable when I stun that guy so I think I'll take the little phaser today."
 
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