Pine: Kirk Is An ‘Everyman’ who ‘Saves The Earth’ |
jump to navigation

Pine: Kirk Is An ‘Everyman’ who ‘Saves The Earth’ October 29, 2008

by Staff , Filed under: ST09 Cast,Star Trek (2009 film) , trackback

A year after he was cast we are finally hearing more and more from Star Trek’s new Kirk. Chris Pine opens up in the new official Star Trek Magazine about why he took the part, how it was ‘scary’ to take on the iconic role of James T. Kirk, what he thinks of the script and more. In a couple of excerpts below, Pine talks about Shatner and how we will see Kirk start off his ‘saving the world’ career early.


Excerpts from Star Trek Magazine

Pine on Shatner: he originated the role
Chris Pine told the magazine that he has corresponded back and forth with Shatner and wrote to him saying he ‘understood the big shoes he was stepping into.’ He also noted that his grandmother was a bit Shatner fan and he can still remember watching TJ Hooker with her every time she was his babysitter. Regarding whether or not he had to pause for thought on taking over the role made famous by Shatner, Pine was clear that Shatner "originated the role" and that he was "merely taking it over for a little bit."

Pine on Kirk: a very human hero
The most interesting part of the interview was what Pine had to say when asked what attracted him to the role of Kirk:

I think what [writers] Bob [Orci] and Alex [Kurtzman] did so well for Star Trek, and did so wonderfully before with Transforms, was they wrote characters who are so strong, that no matter how big the effects are, you never lose sight of the human aspect of the story. Immediately in our film, all of the characters are presented at their most human. Kirk’ interesting because he is the Everyman presented with an unbelievably epic, daunting task, an opportunity, a challenge, and he has a very difficult choice to make. It just happens it’s one of the big ones, like "try to save Planet Earth" kind of thing.

I think what ‘s great about it is he’s insecure, he’s damaged, he’s cocky, he is brash. He is all these things at once, and he’s a hero, but a very human hero. Anyone looking at it can see themselves in James T. Kirk. That’s what was great about it. It wasn’t far from myself, and I don’t think the character is far from anybody. When presented with a great challenge, it’s your choice to either step up to it, and try to take it on head first, or not. You try and do the best you can.

There was a lot of humor and a lot of action in it, but what really got me about the role were two pivotal scenes at the beginning of the movie that lays out James T. Kirk to a T. Those were the most exciting scenes, and the ones I was most looking forward to taking on.

Pine as Kirk in ‘Star Trek’ during one of the more human moments

Pick up the ‘kick ass’ issue
The latest issue of Star Trek Magazine has more from Pine about his auditions, his thoughts on the script, attending conventions and even how he thought that he and his fellow actors and the Trek team ‘kicked some major ass.’  There is also an extensive feature on Romulans (although not directly related to the new Star Trek movie).

Pick it on newsstands now.



1. Devon - October 29, 2008

They’s already screwed with canon. He should be James “R.” Kirk. I’m boycotting.

Okay not really. Chris is good people.

2. CAPAirSAR - October 29, 2008

The more I hear from this guy, the more I like him. And you know, for the first time I’m actually seeing him as James T. Kirk.

3. krikzil - October 29, 2008

“… think what ’s great about it is he’s insecure, he’s damaged, he’s cocky, he is brash”

Hmm, I agree with the cocky & brash but I don’t see him as being “insecure” ever– even as a young man. And “damaged” perhaps only later after all pressures and losses he suffers through the Trek timeline.

4. RM10019 - October 29, 2008

Looking forward to the movie and seeing the Trek legacy continue. A vision of a future full of peace and adventure

5. Baroner - October 29, 2008

He’s been damaged ever since he saw his best buddy get his ears caught in a mechanical rice picker. That’ll screw anyone up.

6. Kobayashi Maru - October 29, 2008

JTK absolutely was damaged and insecure!
The cockiness was overcompensation, and that makes for a great, complex character.
I’m beginning to feel that Kirk’s legacy, both his newly revealed past, and his yet to be told future, is in good hands.
Good Luck Chris.
PS- Hop we get to see the girl he almost married in the academy.
Could it be Carol Marcus?

7. Comic Book Guy - October 29, 2008

I think Kirk’s been damaged ever since Tarsus IV…

8. Darfyn - October 29, 2008

JTK , its just his machismo , Maru . I don’t think its compensation . Now Jim’s friend and the rice picker . I think we can say it picked more than his ears . He’s such a calm reasonable person , isn’t he ? Or maybe macho Jimbo just has that effect on him ?

9. krikzil - October 29, 2008

Ah yes, Tarsus IV. I always saw that as an example of just how strong JTK was emotionally — that he could go through something as horrific and come out the other end with sanity intact. And I guess I’m defining “damaged” in my mind in pretty strong terms — so Kirk would never have gotten through the psych evals to become a Captain, a starship Captain, if that were the case. (I’m not saying a Captain can’t tip over the line AFTER becoming a Captain — we saw that in Garth of Izar and Matt Decker.)

10. shat hands - October 29, 2008

# 6

totally agree with you!

i think he is gonna be great as Kirk and I love the fact that his granny fancied the shat… his granny!

just shows how long treks been going on!

11. Kobayashi Maru - October 29, 2008

And the idea of Will Dekker being as sure a commander of the Enterprise didn’t rattle him in the least ?
Or refusing to let Sybok release his pain…
Or insisting Picard never give up the chair?
I am well aware I am citing the worst films in the canon, but even these films address the fact that Kirk is very uncomfortable in his shell, and does all he can to demonstrate otherwise.

12. Derf - October 29, 2008

“…interesting because he is the Everyman …”


Kirk the Plumber?


13. Darfyn - October 29, 2008

#6 well we do know Jim is damaged , and is part of the drive he has .
Carol Marcus at the Academy with Jim , now that would be a ‘treat’ , but I’m gonna guess it won’t be , since it’s really the small print . Ah , pity !!!!

14. Darfyn - October 29, 2008

Since the Movie to be released at the Theaters is a Short Version , I’m hoping the Dvd Version , will be an extended – 2hrs+ – version , with extra features ?!!

15. Kobayashi Maru - October 29, 2008

Being kept away from David’s up bringing could be very telling, so… we’ll see.

16. Jordan - October 29, 2008

Let’s just hope that Chris Pine has the acting chops to pull this off. If Pine has JJ’s endorsement, then that’s good enough for me. I have an almost perfect faith in this project. My only concern is that canon will get f-ed with.

17. nephron - October 29, 2008

F%#k canon. Canon-schmanon.

What IS “canon” anyway? It’s story elements that made it into televised episodes, but at least 2/3 of ALL the episodes were crap stories to begin with; a big chunk of the precedents laid down never should have seen the light of day in the first place.

Getting hung up on “canon” means getting hung up on b.s. that gets in the way of a truly good story.

“Canon” is for the birds, man.

18. Bill Peters - October 29, 2008

I am wondering if we will see the incdent at Tarsus IV in the movie…if I remember right it was a major life impacting event in Kirk’s life.

19. Scott - October 29, 2008

#17 – Yeah, canon, continuity … that stuff is ridiculous to get hung up on. I mean, if in this movie it makes sense to have Kirk’s mom be an abusive alcoholic in order to set up a great character arc for Kirk, that’s cool. And if in the next Star Trek movie, it makes more sense for the story to make his mom be tender and nurturing, well, then who cares how she was portrayed in the previous movie?

Whatever serves the story you’re telling at the moment should dictate the “canon” you make up for that story, not some slavish devotion to whatever some lame previous writer came up with.

Right? :-)

Scott B. out.

20. Darfyn - October 29, 2008

If there is NO CANON , there is NO BANG !!!! ALL you have LEFT is CRAP !!!!

21. Commodore Redshirt - October 29, 2008

“Ta ta ta taaa…… It’s Captain Kirk To Save The Day…!”

22. THX-1138 - October 29, 2008

Sometimes the comments make me tremble with disgust.

An actor says Kirk is an everyman and that things from his past impact the tyoe of man he becomes and all of a sudden all of Trek has been re-written.

Jump to conclusions much?

I am constantly surprised by the rabid Trek fans capacity for ridiculous statements that are not based in any kind of fact. You would think that after two years rational discourse would prevail, but no.

To me, it’s like rejecting you birthday presents because someone changed the wrapping paper. Why don’t you open it up and see if you like it before you ask for your money back.

23. 24th Century Rockstar - October 29, 2008

To #3: “Hmm, I agree with the cocky & brash but I don’t see him as being “insecure” ever– even as a young man. And “damaged” perhaps only later after all pressures and losses he suffers through the Trek timeline.”

Here’s a angle that’s sure to get everyone thinking – how many of you watched the original series eps that involved other Constitution Class ships and Captains. Do you remember that they were all depicted as middle aged men in there 40’s and 50’s? Remember how most of them were pretty condescending to Kirk – you see it most in ‘The Ultimate Computer’ and it is touched on in ‘Shore Leave’ in the Finnegan character as well. Even Gary Mitchell’s description of young Kirk as “a stack of books with legs” serves to further portray academy Kirk as something of a freakishly motivated upstart making his name among the other Constitution Class command school students who judged him to be a kid that was way out of his league.

My girlfriend and I were watching The Wrath of Khan with a few drinks just last night and for the first time I really caught the way Spock and McCoy affectionately ribbed Kirk about the Kobayashi Maru test and how they were just a little coy with Saavik regarding her inquiries into their academy days.

Personally, I think Trek has been dropping hints concerning young Kirk for a long time. The big things we already know about – Kodos and Tarsus IV, the tragic death of Captain Garrovick and the events that transpired on the Farragut – one can only wonder how these events could affect or motivate someone – maybe even freakishly motivate, eh?

So #6 – I totally agree with you. I think our buddy Jim Kirk had a lot of things to deal with as a young man that motivated him to persevere against the odds and the ageism of his peers – and I think when he DIDN’T have what it took, the others rallied behind him and pushed him into excellence.

Based on these thoughts, I think Mr. Pine has a valid take on young Kirk and I’m really curious to see what he has to bring to the table next summer.

Set a course for the rockstar baby!

24. SPOCKBOY - October 29, 2008

I think he is going to be GREAT as Kirk.
As far as Canon goes, I think Kirk’s back story IE:
-The Kodos the executioner story
-Growing up on a farm in Iowa
-The Kobyashi Maru
-Gary Mitchell
-Teachers at the Academy
It’s all great stuff and I have a feeling Orci and company think so too.
All of these back stories are what make a character believable and real.
As far as Kirk being damaged goods, we’re ALL damaged goods. The story lies in how we deal with the damage we have. Kirk deals with it in a heroic way. I sincerely hope Orci and his pals play up the side of Kirk that was taken directly by Roddenberry from his inspiration Horatio Hornblower. A very strong and human concern and affection for the crew under his command.
I remember the first season played that up more than the rest.
That vulnerability that Kirk demonstrated when a crew was lost, perfectly balanced his heroic side.

My only fear about this film is that it ends up seeming like Star Trek 90210.
I sincerely don’t think it will however.

25. captain_neill - October 30, 2008

Pine will proabaly be good as Kirk

But he will never EVER take the place of William Shatner. I grew up with Shatner in the role.

As he said himself, Shatner originated the role. I am glad Pine understands the character.

I also wonder if he will convey the cross between Hamlet and Hornblower that Roddenberry described and Shatner conveyed.

I feel confident that the actors will be one factor I will be pleased with, unlike the set design which is still leaving a bad after taste in me.

26. I am not Herbert - October 30, 2008

#20: NO CANON = NO BANG! Excellent! =D

27. holla - October 30, 2008


28. cagmar - October 30, 2008

Well, he’s wrong about Transformers having any sort of characters at all. There effects in transformers swallowed the movie completely and without remorse. So here’s hoping Pine got the rest of his comments right. If he’s comparing Star Trek to Transformers in any way, I am very very afraid.

Sounds like STXI is going to be an interesting movie full of characters and intelligence… that degrades into an action flick that loses us.

But I still love Pine and what he seems to have done with Kirk, big-time. I’d see it for him alone at this point.

29. CarlG - October 30, 2008

#17: I’m in love with your post. Absolutely took the words out of my mouth.

For sure, it’s good that different stories taking place in the same imaginary world jive with each other. For sure, it’s right that a character’s motivations stay consistant from story to story. That’s just good world-building.

BUT, if the weight of all the stories that came before get in the way of a truly good story that is well told, that makes you feel, think, laugh, cry, whatever — it becomes a liabilty and should be drop-kicked out the airlock post-haste. Dismissing a brilliant, clever, emotionally engaging story just because it’s not “canon” is being tragically narrow-minded.
And isn’t one of the primary ideas behind Trek (and much of SF in general) to expand your horizons?

Yikes. where’d that rant come from?

Anyways, Mr Pine sounds like he’s got a good feel for the character. Honestly his previous resume didn’t fill me with confidence, but he’s growing on me…
Poor guy, though. Being scrutinized to the millimetre by us geeks. ;)

30. Blake powers - October 30, 2008

on kirks insecurity: he is a better captain because of his pain and insecurity. St:5 though sucky, was great at the character development of kirk and seeing how he uses his pain to his advantage.

31. Blake powers - October 30, 2008

23. We know you are lying. We don’t have girlfriends. :-)

32. Jan - October 30, 2008

I wonder why Pine was relatively undecided to take the role and had to be convinced by the script first. After all he took parts in “Blind Dating”, “Just My Luck” and “The Princess Diaries 2″ – no exactly the most sophisticated scripts…

33. Iowagirl - October 30, 2008

– He also noted that his grandmother was a bit Shatner fan… –

Most charming rugrat…

– Pine was clear that Shatner “originated the role” and that he was “merely taking it over for a little bit.” –

See, Pine – I knew you could do it.


Kirk sometimes is on the edge – he’s a man “with strong emotions”, he’s not afraid of having feelings and he is such an extraordinary commander because of his ability to make his emotions, his gut feelings, his sensitivity part of his personality and to use it as fundamentals for his decision making. Having said that, he’s well aware of the danger of letting his emotions prevail, so he ensures his feelings, his emotions with his rationality – a unique mix which makes him the exceptional captain we know. And although he’s experienced some truly tragic occurrences and losses in his life, he isn’t “damaged”. His great emotional strength and his love for his ship, his crew, his loyalty make him the archetype of a positive hero.

34. CmdrR - October 30, 2008

“Anyone looking at it can see themselves in James T. Kirk.”

I just don’t see myself wearing that much lipstick.

Best to Pine, though. ;-)

35. Kirk's Toupeé - October 30, 2008

Star Trek:Enterprise should be officially de-canonised by Paramount as that would solve the whole continuity/canon/non-canon argument and thus pave the way for this great new film!!

My ten pence worth……………..


36. commander K, USS Sovereign - October 30, 2008

#22 Best comment all day. I totally agree. People really ought to relax a little.

37. The Last Maquis - October 30, 2008

I like it when Denise de Arman goes all crazy for this guy.

38. AjaxLou - October 30, 2008

Chris sure makes his Kirk sound intriguing. Can’t wait to see it.

….and the adventure continues….

39. Captain Dunsel - October 30, 2008

#32 “I wonder why Pine was relatively undecided to take the role and had to be convinced by the script first.”

Perhaps he LEARNED from the earlier mis-steps you cite? (Besides, who cares about the script, when you can get near Anne Hathaway?)

40. Darfyn - October 30, 2008

#35 Well I’m a Constructionist following the continuity from TOS thru’ to the Movies with the Original Crew – I was quite apprehensive going and getting the latest Enterprise Series . But I really enjoyed it ! Among trekkies here , we know the interest in Star Trek started waning in Voyager and was abysmal when Enterprise started . And some even said that interest died as TNG ended . I enjoyed Enterprise which was a great canon series , fast paced and well made , but nobody was listening by then . I think this new movie will be fun , but is there enough left who care ?!!

41. SPB - October 30, 2008

Anyone who slept around the universe as much as James T. Kirk certainly is “insecure and damaged!” You don’t need to be a psyche major to understand that.

Kirk has always been the “Sam Malone” of STAR TREK.

42. Devon - October 30, 2008

40 – “I think this new movie will be fun , but is there enough left who care ?!!”

Good question. With the marketing and what all they are putting into this movie, I’m sure it’s the hope that it will open their ears and some new ears as well.

43. Krik Semaj - October 30, 2008


44. Stankford Tiberius McFibberich - October 30, 2008

I guess something that bugs me (aside from recasting) is that I really don’t want to know the supposed origin story.

45. Spock - October 30, 2008

I hope he’s ‘damaged’ in a good way.

If they go all Anakin Skywalker, this is going to suck.

46. Kobayashi Maru - October 30, 2008

I believe James T. Kirk is the type to get ambitious when he comes from a place in the world (Iowa) that doesn’t recognize ambition as a virtue, (as restless as Luke Skywalker was on Tatooine).
His drive gives him impetuous stutter steps in the academy, as inferred by Gary Mitchell in the TOS pilot.
There is a ruthless side to him as well (Kobayashi Maru performance) and Carol Marcus has maintained that he was “no boy scout”.
I’ve always believed his bravado masked a self doubt, remember McCoy’s pep talk in “The Ultimate Computer”.
He hates the idea of growing old and not making a difference, even his prophetic if not quite accurate statement about dying alone betrays a reluctance to be vulnerable in the company of others.
These established details make for a very interesting character study, and it’s exciting to believe we may see it’s origins.
I hope Pine pulls it off, I’m rooting for him, because I really like this character and for better or for worse, we are just at a point in the time space continuum where it is beyond credibility to see William Shatner show the origins of what he has so greatly established as one of the most enduring characters in popular culture.
So let’s strap in and see what’s next…
the Kirk adventure is only beginning…

47. Joe Schmoe - October 30, 2008

Makes senses that we see these characters at a different point in their lives, when their personalities were evolving. Before major events shaped their lives and perspectives.

Experiences in my 20’s and early 30’s shaped who I am at the age of 40. My core is the same, but I am more at peace with myself, more accepting of things about myself and the world around me on one level — yet more determined and focused about other things on another level.

That’s wisdom. Something that only comes with some time to live and experience the joys and sorrows of life.

So, for it to be real, I would expect Kirk and Spock et al. to be different in this movie. If they are the same characters just played by different people, then that would say that the characters never grew throughout their adulthood.

48. Crusade2267 - October 30, 2008


I’m guessing, of course, but I think he may be “damaged” more like Batman Begins than Star Wars. In Batman, the destiny that the main charicter had to reach was as a hero, not a villian. Anakin never got over his past, and it destroyed him. (And since the actors they cast couldn’t really do tragedy that well, it wasn’t very good.) But we know Kirk will be a hero, so I think this movie will be about moving beyond Iowa and embracing his destiny.

49. Brett Campbell - October 30, 2008

Personally, I don’t think STV is the stinker that everyone makes it out to be, and is in some ways one of the most spiritually mature of the “Trek” films. I always loved the part where Kirk tells Sybok that he chooses to keep his pain because that is what makes him who he is. That is a big key to and insight into Kirk’s persona.

50. Cosmo Kid - October 30, 2008

# 24 A Appearance from Finnigan and props to Lord Garth would be excellent too.

51. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

I bet we see a young kirk and oriely on taruses with kodoes the executionener. That would explain the damage to Jim Kirk and how he had to overcome it. That would also keep with may i dare say cannon. We do know we will see kirks Parents there and they were on Tarses.Hey maybe Lt Oriely will be played by Paul Mcgillion (Dr. Beckett fro stargate Atlantis) would love to see more from tarses and Kodoes the Executioner. I think pine was smart in Talking to the Shat and getting his insights on the role Of James T Kirk.

52. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

It would be so kool to see Finnegan Put a Buckett of water over Kirks Door and see him get all wet or the many other pranks he pulled on our young cadet. Will we see Ruth and Carol Marcus. Maybe we will see a very young David Marcus as well.

53. JimJ - October 30, 2008

Hard to beat “the Shat”, but I’m sure rooting for Chris Pine and crew!

54. Dave - October 30, 2008

Absoulutely Kirk is insecure!… How many times did he say to McCoy “Bones I see those men on the bridge looking for me to make the next move…. what if I’m wrong?” -Look at “The Enemy within” or “The Naked Time”

Character-wise this is getting interesting.

“Never give you up…never” JTK

55. Trek Nerd Central - October 30, 2008

He gave a terrific capsule description of Kirk’s enduring appeal. I’ve always loved Kirk in large part because of Shatner, but also because the character is so inherently thrilling — human and forceful and intelligent and lively and screwed-up and sexy in the broadest (ahem) sense.

56. Norman - October 30, 2008

“I want my pain! I need my pain!”

57. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

Kirks Pain is what made him tick. Weather it be bacause of Kodoes the Executioner on tarses or the death of his best frend Gary Mitchel or the death of Capt Garrivick for what he believes is his fault for not fireing on the gas cloud creature in time to save the ship or the death of his Brother and sister in law or when a member of his crew was killed(red shirts) The death of his Son at the hands of the klingons. So it was his pain that pushed him and with his best frends in Bones and Spock that kept him sane and going. Kirk Is a deep and personel chariter and Chris Pine will do a great job in Protraying Kirk.

58. Trek Nerd Central - October 30, 2008

#56. Ha! Yes. I do think he’s one of the more damaged heroes in pop culture. Think about all the tragedy Kirk endures over his lifetime:

His brother dies, his sister-in-law dies, his best friend Gary Mitchell dies, his best friend Spock dies (so he comes back to life; so what), Edith Keeler dies, his instant-android-lover dies, his wife Miramanee dies, his unborn child dies, his grown son dies. . .am I leaving anyone out, here? Oh, and he witnessed planetary genocide as a young man. Right.

59. Trek Nerd Central - October 30, 2008

#57. We must have had a psychic link while writing our posts.

60. ngl;sdb;ga - October 30, 2008

kirk the maverik? ugh

61. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

I am really tired and sick of the “Star trek 90210″ comments. These aren’t high school age people.. they are late 20’s/early 30’s so knock it off already.

And the “iPod store” comments… i have been to an apple store.. looks nothing like the bridge… and my iPod looks nothing like the bridge.


62. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

#59. We must have. My Mind to your Mind. Our thoughts are one.

63. Shatner_Fan_2000 - October 30, 2008

#55 “I’ve always loved Kirk in large part because of Shatner, but also because the character is so inherently thrilling — human and forceful and intelligent and lively and screwed-up and sexy in the broadest (ahem) sense.”

Well said. Couldn’t agree more. :-)

64. desertrat - October 30, 2008


65. Kobayashi_Maru - October 30, 2008

#11- been posting with this name for a year now…


66. James - October 30, 2008


Sorry, totally disagree with you there. Continuity is an integral part of good storytelling. Of course it shouldn’t be the be-all and end-all, but it IS important. It’s absence means a lack of coherency, of purpose, of sense, and of meaning.


The ‘Kirk’s mum’ analogy you provided is just the kind of inconsistency I detest in all forms of entertainment. That’s not avoiding canon ‘for the sake of the story’, that’s a ‘plot hole’, i.e. lazy storytelling in order to make a quick buck.

I’m not a canon purist – I don’t regard everything that has happened or been said in Trek to be gospel and therefore incorruptible. I prefer to regard canon as history, and therefore subject to interpretation. But to dismiss it or grotesquely violate it just ‘for the sake of the story’ would be totally and utterly wrong.

67. kudos to kodos! - October 30, 2008

kudos to #57 – yes, it’s kirk’s pain, and mostly his regrets , that made him tick. granted, he did experience pain and tragedy (the moments already mentioned – kodos on tarsus 4, deaths of capt garrovick, gary mitchell, spock, his brother, his son, etc) …. but mostly kirk seems to regret his failure to pursue other more personal and meaningful endeavors – spending time walking with someone he loves on a beach, or getting married (the naked time, star trek: generations) – – and instead he’s sacrificed all that and he’s got all this responsiblity of commanding a starship and saving planets… which yes, leads to some occasional glimpses of insecurity, in that kirk defines himself by his associations – with friends and comrades all around him, spock and mccoy to balance his emotions , and as capt of the enterprise, where he seems to belong- for if he didnt have enterprise, he would crumble under the weight of his regrets.

68. Mike - October 30, 2008

Pine comes off as a pretty smart dude in his interviews… out of all the characters in this movie, I’m most looking forward to his.

69. BeyondtheTech - October 30, 2008

I’ve already set up a separate countdown for the 007 premiere just so I can get a glance at the trailer. ;)

70. Kobayashi_Maru - October 30, 2008

Hopefully It’ll be out on the web before the 007 premiere.

OHHHHHH And to the mirror Kobayashi Maru…Been posting with this name for a year now…get a new one!

71. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

#67. You are correct. He is a deep man with everything. His love of duty and the Enterprise and His Determanation to be the best at everything. it was his frends and associations that kept him in line and going forward.

72. Petey - October 30, 2008

I think at this point we need to give credit to Mr. Bob Orci and Mr. Alex Kurtzman for remembering what I think most Trek fans take for granted. That Kirk has gone through a whole lot in his youth, and that brash and cocky Kirk with the swagger is really just a shell for a very traumatised young man.

So kudos to the writers for that.

73. Capt Mike from the Terran Empire - October 30, 2008

#72. I Agree.

74. Kobayashi Maru - October 30, 2008

I’ve had it for over two! So…

75. Kobayashi Maru - October 30, 2008

Why do you think you need a place holder between the words?

76. Kobayashi Maru - October 30, 2008

You can check older threads!
Long live Kirk, whoever plays him!

77. James - October 30, 2008

Anthony, please do something about the Kobayashi Marus. At least one of them is flaming now, and it’s ruining the thread.

78. Norman - October 30, 2008

maybe the KM’s are the result of a transporter malfunction ala ‘The Enemy Within’…

…but which one is good, and which is bad?????

79. James - October 30, 2008

@78: LMAO!

80. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

Yes, Maquis, I do think Mr. Pine is quite the tasty morsel… That being said, I believe he is off in his evaluation of Kirk being “Everyman”. Going strictly by the Joseph Campbell archetypes, Kirk is the “Hero”, not the “Everyman”. While Jimmy Stewart played the Everyman archetype to a T, being the Reluctant Hero, Kirk is the personification of the Hero in that he takes all dire stuations and, through ingenuity and intellect, turns them around for the good (until Khan, when Spock stepped in and saved the day). The Hero supposedly has that written in his DNA sequence (my words, not Joseph Campbell) and demonstrates his special abilities from the time he is a toddler. Wish Mr. Pine saw it my way.

81. Kaiser The Great - October 30, 2008

Kirk is insecure, Kirk is an Everyman, Kirk is like Han Solo – I don’t really like what Pine has to say about Kirk so far. But then he can think his motivation all he wants, as long as it doesn’t come across on screen that way. ;)

82. LCDR Arch - October 30, 2008

In Courts Marshal we learned the Kirk won the Medal of Honor. We never saw him do anything up to that time to win the highest medal possible. (except maybe balance of terror?)
We also know Kirk is the youngest CAPT in Starfleet. So he must have done somthing pretty amazing to 1) win the medal of honor 2) be promoted to CAPT at 34! 3) Get command of 1 of 12 Constitution class starhips when we saw all other Captains to be age 45-60.

To me Kirks career is simular to my Naval hero CAPT Stephen Decatur. Who in the youngest Captain in the United States Navy at age 25!

To me this movie fits cannon perfectly. Tell me the story how a young LT somehow gets prompted to CAPT. (of course in WNMHGB he had 2 stripes so maybe he was Commander with naval courtesy title of Captain. )
I can’t wait to see the story!!

83. Paul - October 30, 2008

We do know that Kirk is insecure. How else do you explain all that make-up he had in his quarters in the Enemy Within. which he used to try and disguise the scratches his his face.

This is also more evidence that Yeoman Rand should be a martial arts expert in the new franchise. She is also a marksman capable of making coffee with a phaser.

Canon. Canon. Canon…. :-)

84. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

LCDR#82- Good point. Court Marshal lists Kirk’s honors ad nauseum until Cogley stops the computer. I would speculate that this laundry list is not an “Everyman” military record for most starship captains, and certainly not commonplace for someone in Starfleet who is only 33 or 34.

85. Norman - October 30, 2008

memory alpha says Kirk was promoted to CPT at 31 and given command of the E.

Just FYI

86. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008

I never saw Kirk as being insecure or an ‘everyman’.

“Only one man in a million can command a starship”

I don’t see those as everyman.

87. The Underpants Monster - October 30, 2008

“Everyman” is on my Top Ten Words That Don’t Describe James Kirk list.

88. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008


Paul Paul Paul.

He was in Rand’s quarters when he found the makeup.

89. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

“Everyman” is EXACTLY how Kirk see himself. He doesn’t have a God complex. Especially when he was younger. He was brash, yes, but very insecure. He had to prove himself worthy as a young Captain.

90. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008

I think going back and showing Tarsus IV would be great storytelling and character development of James T. Kirk.

but that would mean honoring canon.

Guess we can’t tell a great story now with ‘canon’ getting in the way!

91. Cylon - October 30, 2008

@81 “Kirk is insecure, Kirk is an Every man, Kirk is like Han Solo” – Are you kidding me ?! If Pine’s kirk is going to be more relatable and influenced by the greatest sci-fi anti hero of all time (Han Solo) then star trek will finally be worth watching. It’s a good thing that Kaiser the Great has nothing to do with making this movie or it would end up like the rest of them….. a flop.

92. Alex Rosenzweig - October 30, 2008

#20 – “If there is NO CANON , there is NO BANG !!!!”

Colorfully put, but essentially accurate, though one might do better with the word “continuity” than “canon”. :) Otherwise, well said!

I’m not really seeing that anything that Pine has said really runs afoul of established continuity, though. I don’t think that’s cause for concern.

#17 – “Getting hung up on “canon” means getting hung up on b.s. that gets in the way of a truly good story.”

Oh, hardly. ;) Most good storytelling rests on consistency and believability. Throw out the one, you lose the other, and the good storytelling usually goes with it.

#27 – I looked. I answered. Moving on. :D

#35 – “Star Trek:Enterprise should be officially de-canonised by Paramount as that would solve the whole continuity/canon/non-canon argument and thus pave the way for this great new film!!”

Truthfully, I’m not sure what ENT has to do with it at all. The real issues would be involved in keeping about 5-6 datapoints from TOS straight, not worrying about events from a century before.


Only if the rebootistas go first. ;)

93. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

montreal paul#89- I speak in reference to literary archetypes, first penned by Joseph Campbell as being part of historical literary culture. I realize that Star Trek is first and foremost a visual medium, but it also transcends itself into the literary as well, embracing the Campbell archetypes as Roddenberry envisioned when he first described Kirk as being “a combination of Horatio Hornblower and Hamlet”.

The Hero archetype bears tremendous mental and emotional burdens, phrasing which describes Kirk to a T. Other archetypes are The Wise Old Man (Obi Wan), The Seductress, Everyman, etc. It is not a matter of how these literary characters view themselves, but a matter of What They Are. In this case, Kirk is and always has been The Hero.

94. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008

In TOS episode ‘Bread and Circuses”, Capt. Merrick joined the merchant marines after dropping out of the Captain program at the academy.

McCoy asked Kirk why Merrick failed the program. Kirk said ‘he failed the psycho-simulator test by a fraction of a second”.

Wow! Starship Captains sound like they are put through every possible test and scenario to get the best of the best. That doesn’t sound like an insecure person or everyman can accomplish.

95. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

Do you not get it? Kirk is viewed as a hero type by others. He, himself, sees himself as a everyman… that is what Pine is saying. And many of the Trek novels show this.. including Best Destiny.

In STV, Kirk says he needs his pain. It makes him who he is. If you have studied the character of Kirk.. you would see that he constantly has to prove himself to gain acceptance from his peers. He is an “everyman” that falls into the reluctant Hero role. As most Heros do.

96. Peter N - October 30, 2008

#44: It can obviously be a disappointment when a familiar character’s backstory comes to life in a way different from what was imagined. Perhaps it can still be appreciated from a “hmmm, I didn’t think of that connection” perspective by trying to keep an open mind. I think it’s great that Trek has given us so many tantalizing bits of information concerning the characters’ origins, which at the same time puts a great burden on anyone trying to “fill in the gaps.” Here’s hoping that the story is great, canon is acknowledged (if not slavishly followed), the actors pull the characters off in a believable way without negating the work of the original cast, and that the look and feel are right – whatever that might mean.

97. DaiMonRon - October 30, 2008

#96 –
Wow, I was looking for those same words! Great insight…..thanks!

98. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

Montreal paul#95- When I mentioned James Stewart as being a reluctant hero, I did not mean to state “reluctant hero” as being an archetype – there is no such archetype. Either the Hero is a Hero archetype, or he is not. Whatever the archetypical Hero’s personal views are Does Not Matter – it is what he IS which counts.

There have been thousands of reports of animals which have saved human lives throughout history – are these animals any less heroic because they do not see themselves as being Heroes? Humans as a rule oftentimes do not see the real person looking back at them in the mirror, and you were right in one regard: True Heroes usually do not see themselves as such.

99. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#3—“I agree with the cocky & brash but I don’t see him as being “insecure” ever– even as a young man.”

I think he demonstrates quite a bit of insecurity in “The Ultimate Computer”, for example, as well as in TMP. He is at his most insecure when his position and worth are threatened. “Ego”, of which JTK has plenty of, is at root a symptom of insecurity.

Cockiness, brashness, and insecurity often go hand in hand. In fact, insecurity can be a driving force in success. I think it makes perfect sense to write Kirk as a bit insecure, especially in his youth. The “cocky” and “brash” JTK is that way ‘because’ of his human frailty—insecurity.

100. Harry Ballz - October 30, 2008

Well, time to go make a HERO sandwich!

101. eagle219406 - October 30, 2008

People are always talking about things about Kirk’s past. We might see a few, but I doubt we’ll see them all. I for one would like to see him rig the Kobiashi maru.

102. sean - October 30, 2008

Kirk definitely had plenty of insecurities throughout TOS and the films. If people are denying that, they simply aren’t paying attention or they’re seeing what they want to see.

103. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

Harry#100- Tame! LackLUSTer… get you back to 69 Forward…

104. » Blog Archive » Trek Will Satisfy Says Pine - October 30, 2008

[…] interview with here, and for more excerpts from his recent Star Trek: Magazine interview click here. Tags: Chris Pine, Star Trek   Posted SF-TV & Movie News […]

105. Duane - October 30, 2008

I’m looking forward to the movie but I wish it weren’t another “gotta save the Earth” story line. I’d prefer a classic TOS story line where we learn something about ourselves through the frailties of others (as in Mudd’s Women, Charlie X) or through the superior attributes of others (as in Errand of Mercy or The Empath.)

I don’t need a big, explosive story line, but it looks like that is what we are going to get. For sure it will result in more box office.

106. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

denise.. i agree with that.. but what Pine is saying is that Kirk sees himself as an everyman. That is what Pine is describing. And we see how Kirk goes from everyman to the Kirk in ST6. He is a young man.. brass.. unsure of himself.. cocky.. insecure… always proving himself to others. As Sean in 102 says… Kirk had plenty of insecurites throughout TOS and the films…

107. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

montreal#106- Pine expresses this “Everyman” opinion as his own, not as the way Kirk views himself, Paul. As a matter of fact, all Pine’s opinions listed above are his own personal views of the character, none of which conform to my own views of the character I have known and loved all my life. Respectfully disagree!

108. Mark - October 30, 2008

What we need to realize is these characters grow. Kirk in his mid-twenties can’t be the same Kirk we saw 10 years later in TOS. He becomes that Kirk from this one, so it makes sense he won’t be as decisive as we are used to seeing him. It makes perfect sense that he be the way Pine describes above. That’s part of growth. I, for one, don’t want to see these younger versions of the ones I grew up with acting like their older, more experienced counterparts. Let me see Kirk make some mistakes that turns him into the Kirk from TOS. That’s interesting.

109. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

thank you Mark! i agree!

110. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

Denise… lets just agree to disagree.

111. Tom - October 30, 2008

Pine probably would have enjoyed having Shatner around. It seems like it worked well for Quinto having Nimoy.

112. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

Montreal and Mark- Fair enough, although I still envision Kirk saving his next-door neighbor’s 2-year-old daughter from being hit by an aircar when he was five… le giggle…

113. Andy Patterson - October 30, 2008


Gotta side with you on this Denise.

114. Norman - October 30, 2008

…in the end it doesn’t matter how ‘Pine’ views Kirk, as long as JJ directed him properly and he makes us believe he is Kirk.

115. krikzil - October 30, 2008

“I think he demonstrates quite a bit of insecurity in “The Ultimate Computer”, for example, as well as in TMP. He is at his most insecure when his position and worth are threatened. “Ego”, of which JTK has plenty of, is at root a symptom of insecurity.”

I didn’t see that as a sign of real insecurity. The truly insecure are incapable of real self analysis — it’s too frightening. Yes, he was threatened by what was going on — you don’t become a Captain of a starship without a very healthy dose of ego.

“Cockiness, brashness, and insecurity often go hand in hand. In fact, insecurity can be a driving force in success. I think it makes perfect sense to write Kirk as a bit insecure, especially in his youth. The “cocky” and “brash” JTK is that way ‘because’ of his human frailty—insecurity.”

Yes, it can be in some people but I will never agree that JTK was insecure. Did he have moments where he questioned himself? Sure. But THAT is a healthy sign. The people who think they are always right and never question themselves, their motives, etc. are the ones with a problem. The JTK I see always knew what he wanted and worked to achieve the goal. Very self-assured.

Now I do think the events he went through (series and movies) did weigh heavily on him — his pain as mentioned in STV but I honestly don’t see as “damaged” at the point Pine will be playing him. The testing required by Starfleet would have weeded out someone truly damaged in a psychological sense. Did Taursus influence him? The death of his dad? Whatever else may have happened? Sure. We are all the sum of our experiences.

116. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

Liz- Keeping my fingers crossed on the Pez-front…

117. krikzil - October 30, 2008

I want my PEZ! I emailed them.

118. Denise de Arman - October 30, 2008

I am waiting for my second set so I can rip into Spock…Yummm…

119. Ensign Ricky - October 30, 2008

Here’s a way to look at this movie in a different light. Think of it as a retelling of a story that really happened if Star Trek was real life. Instead of Leonard Nimoy as “Spock”, Mr. Spock plays himself in the movie & helps tell the story along with actors hired to portray our Heroes Kirk, McCoy etc….. Maybe Spock decided to take up writing in his old age and he sold the screenplay & agreed to appear in the movie.

120. Norman - October 30, 2008

119 – no thanks

121. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#115—“I didn’t see that as a sign of real insecurity”

Dr. McCoy sure seemed to. :)

“The truly insecure are incapable of real self analysis — it’s too frightening.”

That, to me, would be “too much” insecurity. That isn’t how I see James Kirk, and I don’t think Pine sees it that way either.

“Insecure”, of course, is a relative term. There would, of course, be varying degrees of it. However, in my opinion, it would be difficult to say that Kirk wasn’t quite blatantly displaying insecurity when Dr. Daystrom’s M-5 unit threatened his place in the Universe.

What about when he perceived every counter opinion/action from Capt./Cmdr Decker in TMP as a threat to his authority? His reaction to Decker’s countermanding of his Phaser order in the wormhole is a perfect example. His inital thought was that Decker had subverted his authority with that intent in mind, when in fact, he was acting “properly” (as Kirk later admitted). The use of insecurity in the character was, at that point, quite deliberate on the part of Gene Roddenberry and Robert Wise. Kirk was trying to prove to himself, as much as to Decker, that he had made the right choice in assuming command of the Enterprise. That is insecurity in its purest form.

If he could display such insecurity at that age (having already proven himself a brilliant captain over the course of 5 years in the Enterprise Comman Chair), it certainly isn’t a stretch to say that he would likely have displayed it as a young man, too.

You mustn’t make the mistake of viewing insecurity as solely destructive. Insecurity has, throughout history, produced great leaders in many cases.

Insecurity—like fear in general — is an asset when properly controlled.

James T. Kirk is the consumate natural leader. He is far from perfect, but he is ‘exactly’ the man you would want answering the phone at 3 in the morning! :)

122. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

The difference between a coward and a hero is this:

A coward lets his fear overwhelm him.

A hero presses on despite his fear.

Insecurity is fear.

All men/women encounter insecurity to some degree…but not all men/women are overcome by it. Those men/women are what we know as “natural leaders” (which can be good or bad, dependant upon the potential leader’s intentions).

123. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008

I believe Kirk was originally written to be a tragic flawed hero type. However, Shatner’s ego got in the way and he would change script and steal lines to make himself the star (with the most lines of course) and make himself the constant hero and saviour of the day. Shatner was worried that his character would merely appear to be the driver of the vessel, while the brains, know how, and talents lay in other characters. So he changed things to attract more God likeness to his character at the expense of others. Shatner even admits now that he was jealous of Spock’s popularity. He did what he could to promote his image through his character.

Some people seem to like that. They seem to like Kirk as a God – all knowing and all powerful. I find it a turn off especially when it detracts from other characters. When I see “Journey to Babel” where Kirk has to know Uhura’s job better than she does – it turns me off. Every time I see “The Naked Time” where Kirk has to know engineering more than Scotty – it turns me off. Every time I see “The Alternative Factor” where Kirk out thinks Spock about scientific properties it turns me off. Every time I see “Court-martial” where Kirk has to know as much about computers as Spock – it turns me off.

I like a tragic, flawed hero better than an unrealistic perfect one. Kirk as an insecure, driven man, escaping pain is much more realistic and inspirational than the unrealistic Godlike one inspired by Shatner.

124. Norman - October 30, 2008


could #123 ByGeorge actually be ‘George’ Takei???

Please Mr. Sulu keep you comments to the Tabloid shows…


125. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#86—-“I never saw Kirk as being insecure…”

“The Enemy Within”

“The Naked Time”

“The Ultimate Computer”


“Only one man in a million can command a starship”

In spite of his insecurity, not because he doesn’t have any.

“…or everyman”

Now, there I agree with you. Poor choice of words, IMO.

He should have stuck with the “human” angle. That would have been enough.

126. Andy Patterson - October 30, 2008


I like my Kirk as a hero. I’ll watch some modern day show to see hyper-tragically flawed heroes.

127. Gorandius1256 - October 30, 2008

For all those cannon freaks out there:

I recall another good show that first aired, about 35 years ago, one that is still on today, and is possibly the best 11years of television of all time. That particular show has so many inconsistencies that you probably couldn’t even count them on 2 hands and 2 feet. Any guesses as to the name of that show people?

128. sean - October 30, 2008

EVERYONE has insecurities. I didn’t read Pine’s statement to mean Kirk succumbs to those insecurities, which is part of what makes a hero work to begin with (and is what I typically think of when I think ‘insecure person’). I don’t see how this could be seen as inconsistent with James T Kirk as we’ve seen him up to this point.

129. Trek Nerd Central - October 30, 2008

#123. I don’t see that at all. I think Shatner put a surprising amount of vulnerability into Kirk. The business about his stealing lines — that I know nothing about. I wasn’t there.

But his acting choices, his facial expressions & gestures, are at times quite yearning & even wounded. Think of City on the Edge Forever or (to name a much lesser episode) Requiem for Methuselah. Or Naked Time or the Enemy Within, for that matter. All of those little throwaway moments when he softened, for just a sec, and you could see the lonely guy inside. That made his heroic strength at other times all the more dramatic.

130. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008


The Enemy Within – Kirk was cut in half by the transporter, his evil half and good half, surely you aren’t creating a character summarization based on solely his one half are you? It was his evil half that kept any insecurities at bay, it is where his leaderhip abilities came from. Every person is insecure in some sense, but confident people ignore/control it.

The Naked Time – Kirk was affected by the water from the planet that let his inhibitions come out and lost control of himself. Surely you’re not saying Kirk is insecure because he was affected by this?

The Ultimate Computer – Kirk was removed from command by a computer and his peers called him Capt. Dunsel (sp.?). I never saw Kirk lose control over this. Any Captain would’ve felt his authority threatened and a true leader, a confident leader, would overcome it as Kirk did.

131. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#127—I assume you’re talking about M.A.S.H., a comedy with some great dramatic moments.

I take offense to the term “canon freak”.

I take ‘canon’ as it is supposed to be…fun. Canon errors do not make me angry, upset, or unable to enjoy a story.

Canon, for me, however, is alot of fun to discuss. I think it is that way for alot of us.

I don’t think it makes us “freaks” to discuss and debate the continuity of our favorite series, and it is hard to imagine that you aren’t being intentionally insulting. Your post is, at the very least, condescending and abusive.

If you have something substantive to say about the article…by all means, please do, but lay off the insults.

132. Shatner_Fan_2000 - October 30, 2008

#129 “All of those little throwaway moments when he softened, for just a sec, and you could see the lonely guy inside. That made his heroic strength at other times all the more dramatic.”

Agree once again! And then near the beginning of Star Trek III, when Kirk stepped off the bridge and into the turbolift. Once he was alone and away from the eyes of his crew, he practically shrank. Another great Shat moment,

133. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008

2009 is going to be a great year where my three favorite franchises make big come backs to relevancy again.

1. Star Trek (movie)

2. The Beatles (new video game)

3. Cincinnati Reds

Welcome back my friends!

134. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008


I agree that Kirk, as written by good writers, and if well directed, is insecure and vulnerable. Shatner was fully capable of portraying that and did a n excellent acting job when well directed. That is the Kirk I want to see. Not the scene stealing, I am the hero garnishing, I’m smarter than all the rest, I have no flaws, put the limelight on me alone guy Shatner could make Kirk into.

This is why I like what Pine says about the character – he sees Kirk as human, flawed, insecure, but brave, brash, inspired, and very driven. I don’t want the superhuman immortal hero. I want the human one. It makes him more interesting IMO and someone we can all relate to. Others will disagree as displayed in this thread. They want an invulnerable, revolve the show around Kirk, everyone else merely supporting baggage, all knowing, all powerful, greatest man to ever exist and sit on a Starship captain Kirk. I like the mortal Kirk better.

135. Erik King - October 30, 2008

The writers said that they took a lot of inspiration from the books. Although they didn’t give us a full bibliography I believe “Best Destiny” was mentioned. Bewteen Best Destiny and Ashes of Eden, you find a very human hero.

136. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#130—I’m talking about the lines in “The Enemy Within” and “The Naked Time” where Kirk actually reveals his insecurity to Dr. McCoy, something to the effect of —“There are over 400 people aboard looking to me to make a decision, Bones. What if I’m wrong?”

As for “The Ultimate Computer”, he once again discusses with McCoy how he feels threatened about being replaced by a computer (thus insecure of his own value, were that to be permanent), and blatantly displays it whenever M-5 demonstrates its efficiency.

“Any Captain would’ve felt his authority threatened and a true leader, a confident leader, would overcome it as Kirk did.”

Thus my post in #122:

“The difference between a coward and a hero is this:

A coward lets his fear overwhelm him.

A hero presses on despite his fear.

Insecurity is fear.

All men/women encounter insecurity to some degree…but not all men/women are overcome by it. Those men/women are what we know as “natural leaders” (which can be good or bad, dependant upon the potential leader’s intentions).”

I never said JTK’s insecurity prevented him from being a great leader…just that he had it.

It did ‘not’ overcome him…He overcame ‘it’, as he always does.

Experiencing insecurity, and allowing it to overwhelm you, are two very different things.

137. C.S. Lewis - October 30, 2008

Pine will do justice to the role if he personally has what it takes to picture himself as Kirk.

Shatner came from humble roots (knowing what hard work is all about from first-hand experience),

Played football (learned to be a good winner, a good loser, how to lead, how to follow, and why we avoid excruciating pain when possible!)

Studied music (they didn’t call the Romantic movement for nothing… Star Trek is clearly in the Romantic tradition),

Worked in a foreign country (which is to say, he was an outsider without a vested interest in his residency),

Fathered and raised children (worry and abject fear over children has a way of clarifying matters for a man, not to mention the maturity gained from leading a family)

And was something of an acting star before Trek, giving him the chance to understand public perception versus reality.

If Pine can draw on similar, age-appropriate experiences, then I have no doubt he can portray Kirk as we want him portrayed.

However, if Pine pulls a “Lord of the Flies” (i.e., the children acted how they remembered/thought grownups acted, but lacked the maturity and training to fulfill grownup authority) then this will suck beyond all belief and be a mockery of itself.

138. John from Cincinnati - October 30, 2008

Having insecurities doesn’t mean someone is insecure.

Capt. Kirk was a very confident individual and always came across that way to me. My opinion.

139. TK - October 30, 2008

I have to agree with Denise and 126, 129.

140. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#138—“Having insecurities doesn’t mean someone is insecure.”

Sure it does. It just doesn’t mean that it will interfere with his ability to act courageously in spite of it.

Feeling insecure is an emotion that a person will either control or he will not. Even when JTK comes very close to losing control of it (like in TMP), in the end, he comes through. Saying he is insecure is not a bad thing. Anyone who assumes such responsibility (or has such responsibility placed upon him) would naturally experience that. It is what he does in spite of it that makes him a hero.

141. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008


“Having insecurities doesn’t mean someone is insecure.”

Having insecurities doesn’t mean someone does not have self-confidence.

142. Trek Nerd Central - October 30, 2008

#130 Well, yeah. But the point his, Shatner’s performance drew this out. You’re right: everyone has insecurities, even Kirk. It’s the actor’s job to bring them to light, making the character more interesting and layered.

#138. Again, yeah. . . But. A hero who doesn’t struggle inwardly is a bore. What’s interesting about that? In fiction, anyway – it’s just too dull from a storytelling point of view. And an actor who doesn’t show this interior battle so the audience can see it isn’t doing his job.

#63 & 132 (also #62 re: #59 . . . wayyy too many numbers, there):

It looks like I’m melding with more than one person on the board today!

143. Fleet Captain Kor'Tar - October 30, 2008

Calm down folks , don’t judge a movie off a few photos and a smattering of info we get from articles before you see the film!

As it has been said before , it is a movie. Some will enjoy it, others won’t . It doesn’t mean the world will come crashing down on our heads if they don’t stick completely to canon , or if the bridge don’t look like it was made with plywood and cardboard , or if the uniforms look all scaly . I myself , am looking forward to seeing the new movie .

To those of you who wish to say it sucks before you see it, you must be some kinda Betazed , either that or you have been to the future and seen the film , and if that’s the case , can I take the old Time Machine for a spin for a couple of hours? ;)

144. TK - October 30, 2008

He’s a tough cookie and will not show weakness to others. However, what makes him human is his vulnerability and his deep feelings. He feels just as much as any other person. Its those moments when he shows vulnerability in private that we relate to him. I really can’t see him as an insecure person at all I’m afraid… i think insecure is the wrong word here. Vulnerable? yes, but not insecure.

145. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008


I believe Kirk, gets his drive, energy, and brashness from the insecurities he has, but continually runs from. If he was secure and well adjusted, he wouldn’t have this internal battle which he fights with boldness, determination and productivity. He doesn’t want to deal with pain in his past, resolve it, go on and be happy. Instead his unresloved pain and insecurity produce the drive and force behind him that pushes him to boldly go…..

Its why he is what he is.

146. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#144—“He’s a tough cookie and will not show weakness to others”

I disagree with that last part as an absolute. While he will usually not show it in front of most people, he is very willing to do it in front of McCoy. Bones is the one who assumes that “confidant” role, whenever Kirk questions himself (and Bones is quite willing to tell him when he thinks it is showing, reassure him, or to demonstrate his own doubt and/or concern over his friend’s behavior).

“I really can’t see him as an insecure person at all I’m afraid… i think insecure is the wrong word here. Vulnerable? yes, but not insecure.”

Insecure: uncertain of one’s self (Webster’s)

Of course he is sometimes uncertain of himself. All leaders are. The important thing is not that he is sometimes insecure, but that he does not allow that insecurity to overwhelm him or hamper his ability to lead.

“Insecure” may not be the word which comes to your mind when talking about Kirk, but by definition, Pine is correct. This was demonstrated on numerous occasions on television and film.

Now the “everyman” comment is one I would question. That, I think, ‘was’ a poor choice of wording. I understand that he was trying to convey that Kirk displays humanistic traits with which we are all familiar and can identify with, but “everyman” is hardly a term which describes JTK.

147. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#145—An interesting and valid perspective.

Personally, though, I think he ‘is’ well-adjusted. I think his ability to overcome his insecurities and act decisively for the benefit of those in his charge is proof of that.

It is not the decision-making ‘process’ that matters. It’s the end decision.

148. C.S. Lewis - October 30, 2008

Leaders can’t show insecurity – the people/crew whomever would instantly lose confidence and it would become “every man for himself”.


McCoy was Kirk’s shoulder to cry on, so to speak, a healer outside the normal chain of command the captain can truly confide his deepest doubts and thoughts without poisoning the command atmosphere and discipline of the crew.

149. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

Actually, the current Webster’s definition of “insecure” is not confident; unsure; uncertain.

Without question, there are times he feels that way.

When Kirk says to McCoy,

“Bones, there are over 400 people on board looking to me to make a decsion…What if I’m wrong?” (paraphrased)

…he’s obviously feeling so insecure that he is willing to discuss it with one of his closest friends.

His reaction to the M-5 unit is insecurity as well. His fear is that he might no longer be relevant if M-5 succeeds. That is insecurity.

Also, his behavior after assuming command from Decker in TMP are a direct result of his feelings of insecurity, IMO. He is trying to prove to himself, as much as to Decker, that he was correct in assuming command—that he gives the crew and the mission the best possible chance to succeed. He even perceives everything Decker does as a threat to subvert his authority, even when it isn’t.

It is there…it just never overcomes him. That is, as I said before, the difference between a coward and a hero.

150. Closettrekker - October 30, 2008

#148—Hence the term, “confidant”. But you are correct. The crew cannot see him as insecure and weak. That does not mean the emotion is not there. Obviously, it is.

151. OM - October 30, 2008

…Nono, that’s “Kirk….is….an everyman….who saves…The Earth!”

152. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008

Actually I see Kirk as a very guarded person who rarely admits his self-doubts even to himself. Christopher Pike was more introspective but IMO more secure than Kirk — and I liked Kirk better. Kirk just doesn’t deal with his “issues”. Sure sometimes he berates himself and cries on McCoy’s shoulder, but very rarely. He is not as introspective as Pike was.

I think we will see all the big 3 are driven and avoiding pain by burying themselves in their work and responsibilities. Rarely do any of them feel sorry for themselves like Pike kind of did. They just don’t think about it and instead run from it. I see this as the source of Kirk’s ability to make decisions too. In a sense, he deals with his pain by helping others avoid pain. This is why he spends his life saving worlds and doing good.

153. montreal paul - October 30, 2008

oh jeez… when Chris Pine says “everyman” he means Kirk is Human in every sense of the word. You guy need to stop disecting every single word.

154. Darfyn - October 30, 2008

How many of you have seen any hollywood $10 million scifi adventure-quickies , with minimal storyline based around frantic activity with close-ups of dirty scowling , swearing and sweating mercs in the future ? And how about in Star Trek ‘The Movie with No Name’ with a much bigger budget to include all emotional nuance , Jim Kirk , in pain with hand reaching out for help from his companions , curling up into a foetal position , starting to cry , and in flashback crying some more , that the position that fate has now put him in ? Dr Mccoy says , “Jim you shouldn’t have done it !” . Scotty , “Captain , the crew can’t help you now . I canna believe you gave the command ! I’m sorry ! We’re leavin now ! ” . Sulu , ” I feel we could have done it ! I’m sorry we couldn’t !” . Uhura , ” I wouldn’t have believed it , if I hadn’t seen it , Captain .” Chekov , ” I believed so much , Captain ! I wasn’t right ! Sorry !” .

155. C.S. Lewis - October 30, 2008

#150 ClosetTrekker

Agreed. Confidence is the virtue to show when you’re not so sure in private.

#152 ByGeorge

There is an element of that, too. These are extraordinary characters that are highly motivated. I’m reminded of a great WSJ editorial a few years ago (dang if I can’t remember the name of the woman that wrote it…)

It was about a popular series of Private Eye novels. The author suggested the Dick did his job to keep other people, not tough enough on their own, from sliding into a life of vice and crime. In other words, his job in life was to save people from themselves before they had the chance to fail.

Do you see Kirk in this way? It’s heroic at a whole new level since it explicitly deems the “everyman” not adequate to the task himself.

156. TK - October 30, 2008

Wow, my post actually got a response (actually, two)! Yay! Hi guys!

Ok, true he has moments when he feels insecure about a decision that he has to make (or has made) but that does not mean that he is insecure of himself, unless the decisions made has cast doubt on his beliefs. He comes across as someone who very well knows who he is, what he stands for and why he does what he does. However I don’t know how he is feelng about himself in this movie…

So, my opinion is that feeling insecure about a “decision” and “himself” are two totally different things. Oh I don’t know….

I’m finally starting to understand how the canonists feel when someone disputes their views.. :)

157. ByGeorge - October 30, 2008


I see Kirk as a man of action not introspection. He comforts himself and eases his pain by the satisfaction and joy he feels when he helps others through his actions. In a sense it is somewhat akin to atonement. He atones for his insecurities and self doubts caused by trauma in his past through well directed actions.

158. eagle219406 - October 30, 2008

#108 let me see Kirk make some mistakes that turns him into the Kirk from TOS

You may not want to hear this but something like that did happen with Picard. In case you didn’t know, when he was an officer or cadet, I don’t remember which, he got into a fight with 3 nausicans and was stabbed in the back. He was forced to have his heart replaced with an artificial one. Q gave him a chance to go back and correct that. He did but then realized it was that mistake that made him that man he was in the present.

159. eagle219406 - October 30, 2008

#136—”There are over 400 people aboard looking to me to make a decision, Bones. What if I’m wrong?”

Actually I believe that line was from “The Balance of Terror.” and McCoy tells him, I can’t remember his exact words, but he says that there are many earth like planets in the universe but only one of each of us, “Don’t destroy the one called Kirk.”

160. Darfyn - October 30, 2008

#127 Okay Gorandius , I’m interested in this long running show ? So you must tell ? In the name of all Tv trivia , what is it’s name ?!

161. The Last Maquis - October 30, 2008

#80. Denise de Arman

Yeah you’re right about that. More Heroic than just Beer and Buffalo wings at Scotty’s night.

Even though I’m sure He would’ve partaken a few Times though.

P.S. Geez These guys are Really letting you have it huh?
Gotta Explain very detail.

162. Closettrekker - October 31, 2008

#158—I’ve seen that, and it is a good example of how being “damaged” shaped who a person ultimately becomes. This is similar to Kirk’s line in STV (and it pains me to quote that abomination), “I need my pain!”.

#159—-That is correct. Here’s the exchange you’re talking about.

Kirk: “I wish I were on a long sea voyage somewhere; not too much deck tennis, no frantic dancing – and no responsibility. Why me? I look around that bridge, I see the men waiting for me to make the next move. And Bones – what if I’m wrong?”

McCoy: “Captain…”

Kirk: “No, I don’t really expect an answer.”

McCoy: “But I’ve got one; something I seldom say to a… customer, Jim. In this galaxy, there’s a mathematical probability of three million Earth-type planets. And, in all the universe, three million million galaxies like this. And in all of that – and perhaps more – only one of each of us. . . . Don’t destroy the one named ‘Kirk’.”

Orci is on record as saying that “Balance Of Terror” is his favorite episode of all the series (even though he is primarily a TNG fan). It makes sense that he would look (if only subconsciously) to BOT when writing the script.

163. Kobayashi_Maru - October 31, 2008

Guess they’ll just be TWO of us…

164. ARGTREK - October 31, 2008

The key element in the story of JTK will be at the end, when the guy in the black helmet says “Jim, i am your uncle” ;-).
I ‘ll be really mad if the character behaves the same way that it does in the 5 year mission. i’m 30 years old, and though im the same person, i sure act different that in my 20’s. And KIRK would not be KIRK if he doesn’t rip off his shirt in a fist fight. If Pine does a shatneristic pause , ill make myself a hara kiri with a plastic gorn …

165. AJ - October 31, 2008



Great quote.

And it transcends the flick.

I certainly hope JJ and Bob/Alex can throw something like that into the new film.

I always loved the Pike/Boyce talk. “Who wants a warm Martini?”

“We get the same kinds of customers…The living, and the dying.”

Really, Trek was able, at its best, to put that all out there. I hope JJ and Friends get it. Bob Orci, I think, does, but we owe him and the boys a view to the film before we pass judgment.

166. Closettrekker - October 31, 2008

#165—-“I certainly hope JJ and Bob/Alex can throw something like that into the new film”

I think that Pine’s comments about Kirk’s human frailties indicate that they at least tried to.

“Really, Trek was able, at its best, to put that all out there. ”

Definitely. It is remarkable to me how much selective memory goes into some of the posters’ assessments of who these characters are.

‘Kirk cannot be this….Spock cannot be that’.

If the “Supreme Court” looked at “Balance Of Terror” (as they reportedly did), they would see a James T. Kirk who does indeed question his own judgement, at times, and ‘does’ sometimes need reassuring from Leonard McCoy in order to truly feel confident in the decisions he must make. That is a very natural human emotional state brought on by the weight of command.

None of that matters, in the end, though—since he overcomes ‘it’…not vice-versa. Overcoming that fear (which is what insecurity is) and ultimately saving the day is what makes him a hero.

It will be interesting to see the difference in a much younger James Kirk, who may not even be so comfortable yet as to confide in McCoy.

I cannot imagine James T. Kirk being at anywhere near 100% without Spock and Bones at his side. I don’t think he could be. That (the big three), IMO, was the ‘perfect’ relationship dynamic.

“…we owe him and the boys a view to the film before we pass judgment.”

If only for their ‘attempt’ at bringing these wonderful characters home to us and the amount of effort it has taken to do so…that is an absolute truth, IMO, for anyone who cares at all about the future of Star Trek.

167. DesiluTrek - October 31, 2008

Sigh … Can we please have a movie storyline that does *not* involve saving the Earth? How many times can one individual, or even one starship and its crew, no matter how heroic, save the Earth? What are the odds of that? Once is incredible enough. I know “saving the Earth” helps give these movies an epic scope, but it stops seeming plausible. It’s enough that our starship crew are heroes — they don’t need to be superheroes.

168. DesiluTrek - October 31, 2008

P.S. Yes, I know they are not making the movie for a larger audience which they assume will have shorter memories or not care what came before or “after.”

169. DesiluTrek - October 31, 2008

I meant they *are* making the movie for a larger audience beyond us fans.

170. Closettrekker - November 1, 2008

#167—“…but it stops seeming plausible. ”


171. The Vulcanista - November 2, 2008

#167 Desilu, with all due respect, with a $150 million budget, what would you like for them to save? More whales? } :-)

Peace. Live long and prosper.
The Vulcanista }:-|

172. the king in shreds and tatters - November 3, 2008

He better do the Kirk Chop, yo.

173. Lil' black dog - November 3, 2008

#162 – thanks! My all-time favorite Trek quote – one that I like to throw out to my friends, kids, co-workers when they’re having a rough day. One that maybe we should all remember…

(I know, doesn’t really pertain to this thread, but Trek wisdom at its best :)

And apparently based on fact if you believe History Channel’s ‘The Universe’ series…

174. Ned Ryerson - November 12, 2008

Meh is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.