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Best Trek Captain?

Displaying poll results.
Kirk
  7495 votes / 19%
Picard
  19974 votes / 51%
Sisko
  2165 votes / 5%
Janeway
  1527 votes / 3%
Archer
  1042 votes / 2%
Pike? Why not
  1129 votes / 2%
Log (the one they're always talking to)
  1833 votes / 4%
I have no soul and don't like Trek
  3666 votes / 9%
38831 total votes.
[ Voting Booth | Other Polls | Back Home ]
  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
  • This whole thing is wildly inaccurate. Rounding errors, ballot stuffers, dynamic IPs, firewalls. If you're using these numbers to do anything important, you're insane.
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Best Trek Captain?

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @12:23AM (#41748517)

    Because Shatner.

  • by Squiddie (1942230) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @12:25AM (#41748527)
    It's obvious Kirk is the superior one. That's not even up for debate.
  • Captain Zlog (Score:5, Insightful)

    by White Flame (1074973) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @12:28AM (#41748535)

    Who is this "Log" you speak of? Surely you mean Zlog.

  • by PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @02:42AM (#41749135)

    Yes, but the good half, or the evil half? The transporter split him in into two in one episode. And then a female occupied his body and was captain as well; does that count? Oh, and the evil one from the parallel universe, as well. And wasn't there a robot version of him; made by "Lurch" out of The Adams Family, on a spinning disk? Or when he got 'methed up sniffing bath salts from a flower?

    All those, and I am not even awake yet . . . there have been Many Faces of Kirk . . .

  • by lister king of smeg (2481612) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @03:28AM (#41749307)

    Picard has out witted Q, Q could turn said geek god into a amoeba with a snap of his fingers.

  • Kirk, but... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by multimediavt (965608) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @09:07AM (#41750959)
    I voted for Kirk, because his character set the example that all the others followed. Now, if you had asked which actor who played a Trek captain was best, that would be Patrick Stewart.
  • by Sponge Bath (413667) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @09:08AM (#41750967)

    Every club in the golf bag has its purpose. Kirk was a tool for comedy. Each episode was like watching Mad Men with the alpha males drinking and womanizing. When Kirk was on the bridge and told Yoeman Rand to get him a cup of coffee, I expected him to slap her on the ass and add "honey".

  • by Cpt_Kirks (37296) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @09:51AM (#41751375)

    Kirk...was...a CAPTAIN.

    Picard is a Manager.

  • by jellomizer (103300) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @09:58AM (#41751457)

    It depends on the time.

    In Kirk's time, and mission. He had a lot more exploration, of new and dangerous worlds. For that we needed a good tactical captain. In a fight Kirk will always win, he is really good at military tactics. While he is OK with first contact stuff and diplomacy, he really shines after his negotiations breaks down and need to show them how much better he is.

    In Picard's time, and mission. He is flying the Flag Ship his mission while has some exploration it is in areas that have been deemed safe, exploring the gaps in areas that have been explored. However he is in a position where there is a firestorm of pressure to not destabilize the area, so there is far more diplomacy and first contact going on. For the most part it seems whenever the ship was to go into battle Will Riker will somehow be on command and Picard is stuck on an away mission, or abducted. So it is tough to say how good a tactical commander he is.

    So they are perfect captains for their time and mission.

    Now Archer wasn't that good because he really lacked strong battle skills or diplomacy. He seemed to cause more problems then he solved.
    Janeway she was a scientist turned captain, she did a good job pissing off the Delta Quadrant.
    Sisko would have been a better captain if the writers didn't copy Babylon 5 and make him the Jesus for aliens. His tactics seem better for larger scale war. While they said he was more of engineer he didn't show it that much unless he was board. His diplomacy was sloppy too, often causing more problems than solving.

  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland @ y a hoo.com> on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @10:30AM (#41751905) Homepage Journal

    Almost like on was filmed in the 90's, and the other in the 60's.
    Bear in mind, TOS advanced women and minorities in main stream TV.

  • by gman003 (1693318) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @10:32AM (#41751945)

    The question isn't which one would win in a fight. Star Trek isn't exactly an action series.

    The question is who was the best captain. And Kirk was not. He left a trail of chaos and destruction behind him, by solving all his problems with his fists or with his dick. He was reckless, constantly endangering himself and others.

    Picard was a better captain. He wasn't much of a fighter himself, generally leaving that to his crew - as a captain is supposed to. He negotiated whenever possible, but rarely hesitated to use force when necessary. He was an effective leader.

    Sisko was somewhat of a balance between the two. He was much more militant, more action, than Picard, but he was also more diplomatic than Kirk. I can see someone thinking Sisko was the best captain because of this, but I don't agree with it.

  • Missing option (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Alter_3d (948458) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @10:42AM (#41752089)
    Cmdr. Peter Quincy Taggart !!!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @11:11AM (#41752535)

    If Earth ever has a "starfleet", every ship captain would WANT to be like Kirk. Daring, brave, unconventional, dangerous, gets all the chicks, beats everything against all odds. But the best captains would be like Picard.

    Kirk was a better character for an action series. Picard was a better image of a real-life captain.

  • by Z00L00K (682162) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @11:19AM (#41752653) Homepage

    I agree that Kirk was really defining the image of a captain - creative, dynamic and moody.

    With Picard the situation was different and the manager style was better suited there too when the crew was larger.

    Both TOS and TNG were good and it's hard to compare them head to head. TOS was groundbreaking in many ways, it changed the playing field for Science Fiction on TV and also for other TV shows since they did things that nobody dared to do at the time. TNG was less ground-breaking, but still important since it was promoting the necessity of doing science to get progress.

    Later shows like DS9, Voyager etc. were watered down, and more riding on the legacy. That said I think that the reboot of Star Trek with a young crew looks promising. It has a more modern touch and plays more on the tension between members of the crew than what could be seen in Star Trek since TNG.

  • Janeway (Score:4, Insightful)

    by McGruber (1417641) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @12:24PM (#41753473)
    Because her crew wiped out the Borg.
  • by dywolf (2673597) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @01:40PM (#41754473)

    Guessing not many of you have actually studied military history or been in it.

    Every military needs its Kirks / Pattons / Chesty Pullers / etc.
    Every military also needs its Picards / Eisenhowers / etc.

    Any military led solely by one or the other is likely to fail. The two types complement and balance each other; cancel each other's weaknesses while multiplying strengths.

  • Re:Aarrgghh!! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mooingyak (720677) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @01:58PM (#41754715)


    I really liked Picard but Sisko has the best character development over all the others combined and he felt like more of a real person than any of the others did.

    DS9 was a fucking soap opera... not valid sci fi.

    That would be relevant if it set DS9 apart from the rest of Star Trek.

  • by tenco (773732) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @02:17PM (#41754907)

    Star Fleet? Military? I don't even...

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @02:21PM (#41754939)

    You clearly have no idea what a captain does. Most of it is managing. You rarely leave the ship - because technically that's the only place you are in command. On the ship you are lord and master of a huge, armed vehicle. Off the ship, you're just a guy with a hand held gun.

    Kirk was an adventurer. He loved flying by the seat of his pants with just a hand weapon.

    Picard was a captain. He liked to command ship's weapons.

  • by arth1 (260657) on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @04:56PM (#41757067) Homepage Journal

    What? DS9 had one of the all-time darkest episodes of the Trek series. Watered down my ass, the characters actually evolved!

    Check for yourself.

    To boldly stay on a space station and reason with other humanoids?

    Voyager, soap operatic as it was, at least had some of the Star Trek spirit. In my view, which obviously differs from yours, DS9 was more of a politically correct copycat version of Babylon 5.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 24, 2012 @05:01PM (#41757147)

    ds9 was a soap opera

  • by cervesaebraciator (2352888) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @11:03AM (#41764841)

    I used to dislike DS9 as well. When it ran on television, I had the hardest time keeping track of it because it had an awful time-slot (Saturday afternoon/evening) and the exact time would change. A few years ago I watched the whole series in sequence, however, and I now appreciate it as a story more than the others.

    I think the element people miss when they compare DS9 to TOS or TNG is the difference in the way the story is structured. TOS and TNG are highly episodic. In TNG a story arc sometimes spans more than one or two episodes, but rarely. In both series, the captain (or another character who will be the main protagonist of the episode) is presented with some challenge that needs to be solved. The character will then develop a solution appropriate to that character: Kirk, fight it; Picard, negotiate with it until it causes its own demise; Spok, out-reason it; Data, reverse its polarity; Bones, cure it with a highly emotional bedside manner; Riker, fuck it; Geordi, reroute its EPS conduits; anyone in Voyager as a solution to any problem, use the deflector shield; etc.

    Because of the episodic nature of the shows, anyone can pick up at any point and follow along reasonably well. Even if you watch them out of order, only a little confusion will result. ("Why has Worf been replaced by this Tasha Yar character? Her growl and scowl doesn't even come close.") This is intentional and designed for the sort of casual television audience that might occasional catch an episode of a primetime Sci-Fi on NBC. Yet, to maintain this episodic quality the series has to be character driven rather than plot driven. Sure, an individual episode will have a plot, but the series as a whole is a setting with very little plot. In each episode it is largely the quality of the characters that determine outcomes.

    This contrasts sharply with DS9. Once the series gets up and running (I'll grant, season one is kind of a drag), the arc of a series long plot begins to become apparent. The show starts with pretty weak characters but it can and should do so. In TOS and TNG characters remain static types (Kirk is always Kirk, Spok is always Spok, Picard is always Picard--excepting batshit crazy movie Picard). Where it otherwise, the episodic quality of the series would cause it to be incoherent since the fixed qualities of the character maintain the show's cohesion. But in DS9 the larger arc of the story is the fixed frame of reference (much like the station itself). Within this arc, the characters may grow and develop. Sisko, Bashir, O'Brian, Quark, Garak, Dukat, and Damar, many of whom start out quite boring, are very different characters by the end of the series. Sure, they maintain some constant personality traits, but they develop in ways no TOS or TNG character does.

    I think DS9 is often underrated because viewers miss how different a show it is. In the Poetics, Aristotle said there were several different categories that make a drama, any of which can determine the quality of the drama as a whole. A drama may be focused on spectacle, like a Michael Bay movie. It may be focused on character, like the early seasons of SG1. It may also be focused on plot, as I would argue BSG is. In TOS and TNG the characters shape the plot; in DS9 the plot shapes the characters. Only when someone understands this may he appreciate Sisko or DS9.

  • by operagost (62405) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:38PM (#41768681) Homepage Journal
    Sounds like "Elite: The Movie".
  • by davydagger (2566757) on Thursday October 25, 2012 @02:53PM (#41768909)
    "I mean, TOS had cheesy aliens, low-budget SFX,"
    By today's standards, but still rings true. I like the cheesy aliens and retro-costumes, and SFX. Thats not even being brought up.

    "and pretty much a plot formula"
    I disagree, TOS delt with social and political issues the rest didn't.

    beause we are dealing with deeper issues that are prevalent to real life, than lost in space. THATS WHY!

    Yes, star trek was dealing with issues like enviromentalism, and the harm industrialization was doing to native enviroments. It was also questioning boundries on what we call "intellegent life", and civiization, and sentience. "Devil in the dark" the episode you mentioned did just that.

    Science fiction is not about laser guns, and warp/hyper drives, and outerspace, and all the trinkets and other shit they have. Its also not supposed to be escapism for those who can't cope with reality.

    Its there to tell relatable parables and critique very real, very modern society. Its been traditionally used to touch topics too hot to touch dirrectly.

    Star Trek TOS was dead on the money with this. They covered topics like the war in vietnam, Mutallly Assured Destruction, comming of age stories, hippies, racism, ecology, enviromental destruction, etc...

    TNG did this half assed, voyager did this occationally, if not half assing it.

    Lost in Space never touched issues beyond basic black and white morality plays on tired old tropes. Star Trek was current.
  • by jandrese (485) <kensama@vt.edu> on Thursday October 25, 2012 @04:23PM (#41770269) Homepage Journal
    Picard avoided a lot of those emergencies by thinking ahead and being prepared. Evidence: Picard shows the value of thinking ahead. [youtube.com].
  • by Jerslan (1088525) * on Thursday October 25, 2012 @04:33PM (#41770389)
    Agreed.... Kira was annoying and, at times, completely disrespectful of authority in the beginning, as well as completely opposed to the Federation helping out Bajor. Over time she saw the benefit of working towards joining the Federation. That they really were there to help them and not occupy and strip mine their world like the Cardassian's did for 60+ years immediately prior to the start of the series. She mellowed out and became pretty bad-ass.

    Sisko... The difference between Commander Sisko in the 1st season and Captain Sisko in the last is like the difference between night and day. He starts out broken and kind of lost. He doesn't even know if he wants to stay in Starfleet. Later he kind of finds himself, and slowly grows more and more comfortable with his role as The Emissary in Bajoran Religion. Then there was the Dominion War, which was cool. We knew through TNG and TOS that war still happened (several with the Klingons get mentioned and a couple with the Romulans), so it was interesting to see how the Federation really reacted to it.

    DS9 was darker, but it still held to the "Morality Play" ideal that Roddenberry snuck into many many episodes in TOS and TNG. "In the Hands of the Prophets" was absolutely dripping with Socio-Political commentary that is still incredibly relevant nearly 20 years later.

    Oh, and lets not forget that, while Picard may have always wanted to, only Sisko ever had the guts to actually punch Q in the face. That takes some balls right there.

"Gotcha, you snot-necked weenies!" -- Post Bros. Comics

 



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