In honor of Star Trek’s 50th Anniversary Sept 9th, I spent the whole day reading and watching Star Trek stuff. (While my oldest was at school and my youngest was napping and my middle child was on my lap watching pseudo-educational videos on the other screen.) No regrets, by the way. But after that, I’ve been mentally comparing the crews of the 4 television series (because Enterprise doesn’t exist to me… I just can’t with that) based on each crew position. And some undoubtedly did their jobs better than others.
Kirk v Picard v Sisko v Janeway
I know for a fact there are loads who will argue me with this one. But I don’t really think this is even close. Picard. For sure. He wasn’t reckless like Kirk, kinda blah like Sisko or incompetent like Janeway. I mean, Kirk earns major points for being the original, for being a lady’s man and for the first interracial kiss on TV. But he’s always going on away missions and puts himself in the thick of it all; like getting kidnapped and assimilated isn’t a possibility? And then where would your crew be, Kirk? (Ask Picard.) You have to give Sisko props for punching Q. Everyone seems to love that. But Q makes the entire point immediately after: Sisko is much easier to provoke. Not a great captain quality. And Janeway. Ugh. I want to like her. Women supporting women, or whatever. But she’s just not a good captain. My daughter’s first curse word was to (parrot daddy) and call her a bitch. Besides, everyone knows what Picard drinks. Tea, Earl Grey, Hot. Anyone remember that Janeway’s addicted to coffee? Nope.
Role: First Officer
Spock v Riker v Nerys v Chakotay
I don’t think I’ll get much of an argument here. Spock is the first alien the world encounters in The Original Series. He’s helped nerdy people accept who they are for fifty years. He’s logical, he’s a badass, he’s just the all around package. I think Riker and Chakotay tie for second, which is probably not a popular opinion (because Voyager is not the most well-liked crew), but consider: Riker had a phenomenal Captain and a second’s job is primarily to provide support. Chakotay had a shit Captain that he was literally fighting at the beginning of the show. And somehow he manages to keep his shit together and hers, too. Kira Nerys is crap. She’s so easily angered (which doesn’t balance her captain at ALL) and her loyalties are constantly in question and she’s just crap.
Role: Science Officer
Spock v Data v Dax v 7 of 9
If you say anyone but Data here, you’re so very, very wrong. And I’ll get angry at you. Spock is an amazing first officer. He’s a great science officer. He’s an incredible asset to his crew. (And he’s pulling double duty!) Dax is amazing, and way cool; and props for being the oldest with some pretty awesome backstory. 7 of 9 is… well, at least she’s pretty. But Data? Oh, there’s no richer character in all of Star Trek. He’s equipped with all the analytical ability of the computer on Enterprise and then some. So he’s uber to take on away missions. He has speed and strength far surpassing any of the others. Plus he has such a desire to be a human that he knows exactly how to best blend his robotics and humanity. He provides the best comedy in the series (and all Trek series.) And in his struggle to learn how to be more human, he shows us what it is to truly be human.
Bones v Crusher v Bashir v Doctor
This isn’t going to be the obvious choice, either, I bet. But Bones is a dick. And there’s nothing really special about him, honestly. He’s a good doctor, but so are billions of humanoids. Crusher was a good doctor, too; more empathetic and equally skilled. But nothing special either. The Doctor from Voyager was a fun character who had the entirety of known (at time of launch) medicine at his disposal at any time. But he was a hologram. And he, the Emergency Medical Hologram (EMH) was replaced by a long term Medical Hologram (LMH) that was designed to be better … And it was modeled after Bashir. Bashir was genetically modified, which is a no-no, and when this came to light, he let his dick of a dad take the bullet and go to jail for a few years. (NBD) On top of being a cold blooded gangster, he has heightened skills and intelligence; making him special. His hand-eye coordination is nearly flawless. Not a bad trait in a surgeon.
Role: Security Officer
Chekov v Yar v Odo v Tuvok
Odo wins this one. My husband will be angry reading this because Tasha Yar is one of his favorite ladies ever. And I definitely think she’s second, here. If for no other reason than she got to sleep with Data. (Ha.) And an entire world was basically ready to go to war for her just a day after meeting her. She was so loved on the show that they brought other versions of her back into the show twice. But she got herself killed by some pretty basic stuff. So… bad security officer. Chekov and Tuvok are just kind of meh. They can tie for last. Odo, though, is a crotchety old man. Sometimes watching him I imagine him in a Grumpy Old Men movie. Instead of him always yelling “Get off my lawn!” It’s always “Get off my space station!” And, while they didn’t use it as much as they should have, he was essentially a T-1000 Terminator. Not easy to top.
Please Note: Worf is absent, here. Which sucks. I LOVE Worf. But Worf wasn’t just head of security, so it seems easier to put Tasha in since that was her entire job. If Worf were in this, though, I still think Odo would just narrowly top Worf because Worf has daddy issues and Odo can melt.
Scotty v LaForge v O’Brien v Torres
Most character development: Torres. Best Character development: LaForge. Proving again, Quality > Quantity. Scotty’s second place because he’s really good at his job. O’Brien’s character starts development on TNG and keeps it going into DS9. He has a family. And there’s very little of that on these shows, so you have to appreciate that at least one guy didn’t put everything on hold for his career. Torres is basically portrayed as She-Hulk, with Mommy issues. LaForge has depth; he has insecurities and interests. He’s sweet and he’s kind. And he’s best friends with Data.
Role: Helm Officer
Sulu v Wesley v Nope v Paris
I’ll give it to Wesley just because he had some character development (unlike Sulu) that I cared about (unlike Paris) and left us with some fun little sayings. “I feel good, but also funny!”
Role: “Communications” (/eye candy)
Ohura v Troi
I hate calling people eye-candy. But I hate them being eye candy more and I don’t think the case can be made otherwise for these ladies. So I have to give this to Troi. But with an asterisk because Uhura had so small a role. She may have had an awesome backstory but in the original series… they didn’t even give her a first name. I’m not a huge fan of Troi, but she has the screen time and backstory. Her character just seems lacking in … significance. But she does have the best mom of all Star Trek. (Gene Roddenberry’s Wife, Majel Barrett-Roddenberry)
TOS – 1
TNG – 5
DS9 – 2
Voyager – 0
Unsurprising, The Next Generation wins my overall.
What about you? What’s your dream crew?