Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Question: After the Reliant ambushes the Enterprise, Kirk tricks Khan and hammers the Reliant into retreat. As Kirk turns to assess damage to the Enterprise, Scotty inexplicably appears on the bridge, carrying the charred body of Midshipman Peter Preston. Why on earth would Scotty bring the dying Preston to the bridge, rather than to SickBay with all the other injured? He had to deliberately bypass SickBay just to make an unnecessary appearance on the bridge.

Charles Austin Miller

Answer: I believe Preston was already dead at that point. An earlier scene was edited out of the film that explained Preston was Scotty's nephew (his sister's son), and which may account for Scotty's rather odd reaction of first bringing him to the bridge.

raywest Premium member

Yet Preston is shown alive (still dying) in the SickBay moments later. Preston shares last words with Captain Kirk before he actually dies. So, this is a case of bad editing?

Charles Austin Miller

What was edited out of the film was an earlier explanation that Preston was Scotty's nephew-this was way before the Enterprise was attacked.

raywest Premium member

These scenes, which include several of Preston's lines which were cut, were restored in the 2002 Director's Edition. Curiously, when the film is aired on TV they still run the original video cut which has the scenes removed. The editing is really sloppy with the scenes cut out and the scenes establishing that Preston is Scotty's nephew add another emotional layer to the film. It makes Scotty's actions make so much more sense, he's overcome with grief over his nephew and anger at Khan. With the scenes cut what Scotty does makes very little sense.

BaconIsMyBFF

Question: When the Enterprise recovers Chekov and Captain Terrell, they just accept Chekov's and Terrell's false explanation, even though McCoy is standing right there with a medical tricorder. Why didn't McCoy's medical tricorder pick up the Ceti eels lodged in the brains of Chekov and Captain Terrell?

Charles Austin Miller

Answer: It's unknown. The tricorder may not have been programmed at the moment to detect any parasites.

raywest Premium member

Answer: The eels bond with the host brain and are virtually undetectable until the host dies or they are found for some reason.

Question: When Khan speaks to Kirk, he tells him that he wants revenge for the death of his wife. Who was Khan's wife?

Chosen answer: This is a reference to the TV show episode that this movie is a distant sequel to. In that episode, one of Kirk's crew falls in love with Khan and helps him take over the ship. When Khan is exiled to the planet, she chooses to go with him. So it would be that after the catastrophic events of one of the planets in that system exploding and causing all sorts of damage to their new planet, she was killed there and Khan blames Kirk for it.

Quantom X Premium member

Answer: Lt. Marla McGivers was the crew member.

Question: Even though it's meant as a comedic moment, I've never really understood why Kirk would be so nervous about Saavik piloting the ship out of space dock. She's not actually flying the ship, so it's not like she's going to crash it into the wall or something. Plus, Sulu is an experienced pilot, so even if she said something stupid like "Warp speed!", he's unlikely to follow the order. Just something odd that I have always wondered about.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

Chosen answer: He's nervous because she's a trainee and had never done this maneuver before. Even if Sulu is there, she could still possibly make one small error that he would be unable to react to in time. As you point out, the scene is meant to be comedic, and it's being a little over-played strictly for that.

raywest Premium member

Again though, she is not actually piloting the ship, only giving orders.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

Even though Sulu is an experienced pilot, taking the ship out of space dock under power is still prohibited for a reason. If something were to go wrong and a quick decision had to be made, Savick would be the one giving orders to correct the problem. That's what makes Kirk nervous, not the piloting skill involved but the decision making required in an emergency.

BaconIsMyBFF

Answer: Saavik destroyed a simulated Enterprise during her Kobayashi Maru test, with Admiral Kirk chiding her afterwards. When Spock invites Saavik to take the real Enterprise out of space dock, Kirk is obviously nervous because he thinks Saavik is unready for command, as she destroyed the Enterprise earlier.

Charles Austin Miller

To my original point though, she is not actually touching any controls, only giving orders. The Enterprise was destroyed in the simulation during a Klingon attack, which is very different than guiding a ship out of spacedock. Not to mention the fact that the simulation is designed to make the cadet fail.

wizard_of_gore Premium member

The whole scene is about Spock taking a dig at Kirk's ego. Being the only cadet in Starfleet history to ever actually beat the Kobayashi Maru test (albeit by trickery), Kirk has an inflated standard for what constitutes "readiness for command," and it shows in his reaction. Knowing full well that it will raise Kirk's hackles, Spock deliberately invites Saavik to handle the simple space dock maneuver. McCoy also knows that Kirk will over-react, which is why he offers Kirk a tranquilizer.

Charles Austin Miller

Question: This isn't technically a mistake per se, but it involves Spock's funeral. Several Enterprise crewmembers are killed during the battle with Khan, and yet only Spock gets a funeral. Perhaps there was a smaller memorial for the others, and Spock got a full funeral due to his status as captain, but why is Kirk only sending Spock's body to the Genesis planet? I imagine he sent only Spocks's body there since in ST3 there aren't dozens of little regenerated human babies crawling around down there.

Vader47000

Chosen answer: I imagine there was a memorial service for everyone killed. Starfleet's policy on corpses is probably to return them to Starfleet HQ where their families can collect them for whatever services or ceremonies they want unless the crewman had left instructions specifying otherwise. There's no telling why Kirk sent Spock's body to Genesis. Based on Sarek's reactions in ST3 he almost certainly went against Spock's wishes, unless of course, Spock left no recorded instructions and Kirk did what he thought would please Spock based on his being highest ranking officer and Spock's closest friend. It also seems very out of character for Spock to just assume that whoever he transferred his katra to would be able to handle it and carry out his wishes (McCoy certainly couldn't!). Ultimately it seems we have to chalk it up to a plot device to base the sequel on.

Grumpy Scot

Question: Presumably, the Genesis Planet was formed out of the dust and gas of the Mutara Nebula. But where did its sun come from?

AidanN

Chosen answer: According to the novelisation of the film the Genesis project was initially designed to be capable of creating an entire solar system. While the focus of the project eventually narrowed down to altering an individual planet, the sub-routines necessary to create a star were still in place and were activated when the device detonated within the nebula.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Where would Kahn learn a Klingon proverb? He was marooned on a planet, and before that he was in hibernation.

Chosen answer: Given Khan's heightened intellect, he'd undoubtedly be an information junkie - he's had plenty of time, either on the Enterprise before his marooning or afterwards on the Reliant, to read up on the current state of the galaxy - he presumably found the proverb in some datafile somewhere.

Tailkinker Premium member

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More for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Quotes

Dr. McCoy: Go... Where are we going?
Captain Kirk: Where they went.
Dr. McCoy: Suppose they went nowhere.
Captain Kirk: Then this will be your big chance to get away from it all.

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Mistakes

The blood stain on Kirk's jacket keeps moving around.

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Trivia

This movie is basically a retelling of another story. When the camera first pans the shelves of the Botany Bay it stops and centers on one book on the shelf in particular.....Moby Dick. That is what this movie is about. Khan is Ahab, The Enterprise is Moby Dick. At one point in the book the whale is circling Ahab's ship on the ocean. At one point in the movie the Enterprise is circling the Reliant (Khan's ship) in the Motara Nebula. Ahab had a scar up one entire side of his body given to him by an encounter with the Whale. At the end of the movie Khan has a burn mark/scar up one side of his body as well. Not to mention that Khan quotes from Moby Dick throughout the movie. The last quote he utters is one that Ahab uttered "From Hell's heart, I stab at thee, for hate's sake I spit my last breath at thee."

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