Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Stupidity: Reliant's prefix code is 16309. This code prevents an enemy ship from ordering a friendly ship to lower its shields or something similar. Five digits with no symbols. We know that symbols and letters aren't used since Spock uses a 10 digit set of switches to input the code. This is ludicrous. In 2016, a high powered server could crack a 6 digit password in approximately 0.0224 seconds (at 100 billion guesses/second). Any starship computer would have to far more processing power then a 2016 server. The prefix code protecting a starship from cyber attack would have to be insanely complex in order to be useful.

Grumpy Scot

Upvote valid corrections to help move entries into the corrections section.

Suggested correction: Keep in mind the era that this movie was made in. This movie was made before PCs really existed. Computers at this time were typically huge devices or box like containers. Their data storage capacity was minuscule and there certainly wasn't any form of AI logic programs built to "hack" passwords. I know this movie is about space and set in the future but there's a lot of stuff in Star Trek movies that based on our technology or development currently, we would expect something bigger, smarter, etc. We still have problems today with people using archaic password structures like 1.2.3.4. or actually using the word password for/in their password. Back in '81-'82, I'm sure that most people would not have thought about codes being hacked. This is not to mention that in many movies, which I don't know if there is a specific reason for using 16309, codes, passwords, numbers for addresses/apt#/room#/etc and other info frequently come about as tribute, honoring, or coming from something in the lives of a film's director/producer/actor/etc! So sure with today's technology, which could have been accomplished more than 10 years ago as well, using a single string of numbers as security measures for anything is foolish and can be hack by a self running password-like cracker program... But they made this "code" back in the very early 80s when computer hacking was barely unconscionable (MAYBE) so unless these #s were a tribute or to honor something, I'm pretty sure no one was even thinking of hacking back then... We all aware of today... all about the hacking threats and YET we still have people using 1.2.3.4., the word password, or other horrible predictable password choices that can easily be broken by a password cracking program... And we know that there's a huge hacking threat requiring strong security measures but don't do so while back then, there was little awareness of the threats of hacking much less the concept of hacking altogether.

OR... in this future they have limited the number of password attempts to one a day and the ship automatically goes to red alert after a failed attempt until the right code is entered. That way it would take 7,327 years or so to try all the codes with the crew on notice and plenty of time to address the threat.

Plot hole: Why doesn't Reliant know that Khan is exiled here? The Federation is so terrified and opposed to genetic engineering that it's still illegal 300 years after Khan. So why is there no warning along with the data on the Ceti Alpha system? Kirk logged what happened with Khan and his solution of marooning him. Starships use nav data to navigate star systems. Ceti Alpha 6 exploded, yet the helmsman or computer never noticed that there is one less planet than there was when Kirk was there? There is no debris from the explosion? Ceti Alpha 5 is the exact same size and was conveniently blown into the exact same orbit as Ceti Alpha 6 used to have? So there is nothing whatsoever to make the crew even suspect that it's not 6? Enterprise would have to have scanned the planets in the system to know that one was habitable for Khan. Did Ceti Alpha 6's destruction somehow magically turn Ceti Alpha 5 into its exact duplicate? If Starfleet ships have been there to map after Ceti Alpha 6 exploded, none of them bothered to check on the exiles? Pretty callous for Starfleet, don't you think? With the technology and amounts of information available to Starfleet vessels, there is NO logical reason for the Reliant to think that this planet is Ceti Alpha 6. Finally, would the Federation be willing to test a device whose exact effects will be unknown on a planet so close to another inhabited one? (00:21:00)

Grumpy Scot

More mistakes in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Saavik: You lied!
Spock: I exaggerated.

More quotes from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Trivia: Early script drafts featured Khan gaining psychic powers with the ability to create illusions in the minds of others. One draft even replaced Khan entirely with an original villain who better suited such fantastical mental powers. By the time Nicholas Meyer wrote the shooting script, Khan was reinstated as the villain and the psychic angle was dropped.

TonyPH Premium member

More trivia for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

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

Answer: Lt. Marla McGivers was the crew member.

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

More questions & answers from Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan

Join the mailing list

Separate from membership, this is to get updates about mistakes in recent releases. Addresses are not passed on to any third party, and are used solely for direct communication from this site. You can unsubscribe at any time.

Check out the mistake & trivia books, on Kindle and in paperback.