Re: Media - UK: How to build a human

Date: Fri Jan 11 2002 - 12:07:08 MST

Mike Lorrey writes:
> it would, I think, be a good idea, I think, to write a new character for
> the Star Trek: Enterprise series into a script that portrays an
> individual with a healthy avocation of pursuit for individual
> optimization and perfection.

In the "Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda" series ( they
have another set of villains who are pursuing individual perfection:
the Nietzscheans. Nietzscheans have genetically engineered themselves
to be strong and fast (and to have bone spike weapons on their forearms).
They are brutal and selfish, cold-heartedly intelligent, totally dedicated
to survival and reproductive success. It was the Nietzscheans who
betrayed their comrades and led to the fall of the Commonwealth in the
series' backstory.

> I'm rather disturbed that the luddites seem
> to have more influence in the new series, as evidenced by the presence
> of the Sulabon race, represented by individuals who are corrupted by
> evil time travellers in the pursuit of genetic/physical/mental
> perfection. So far we have only seen one 'good' Sulabon character in one
> episode. Perhaps we need to write in a new crewman who is Sulabon and a
> member of the majority of Sulabon society, who pursue improvement and
> perfection as consensual individuals. S/he would serve on the Enterprise
> as a sort of scout/intelligence liason in it's continuing conflict with
> the time criminals.

They do have a "good" Nietzschean on board the Andromeda, Tyr Anasazi,
who helps defend the ship and gets along reasonably well with the crew.
However he is an ambiguous character and the writers don't try to soften
his Nietzschean attitudes much. He makes it clear that he is on the
Andromeda to further his own interests in survival and power. There is
a sense that if the opportunity presented itself he would betray the
crew without a second thought if it was to his own advantage.

It is hard to find positive examples of self-improvement in popular
culture, even the old-fashioned kind, success through self-education
and study and hard work. It's ironic because in the real world you find
that many successful people raised themselves by their own bootstraps.
But fiction writers seem to prefer the notion of the aristocratic hero,
born to greatness. Batman in the comic books built himself into a
super-human hero, but in the movies it seemed that he relied more on
his inherited wealth to buy expensive toys.


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