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Did Zoe Saldana almost destory the character of Uhura

picard_2305

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 4:09 pm

I love the character of Uhura as I love all the TOS characters. But I got to ask this.


Did anyone think that Zoe Saldana almost ruin the character of Uhura in a few scenes in the new movie when she was with Spock.


In the Hangar Deck she 'insists' on having Spock assign her to the Enterprise and after Vulcan is destroyed (I still hate them for doing that) she abandons her station to try and "comfort" Spock in a very intimate way.


The more I think about it the more I think that this is not how I want Uhura.


It is great she is a strong character but to me this did not seem like Uhura.


No arguments its just an opinion that I hope invites discussion.

toranaprem

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 4:44 pm

Nu!Uhura is a very complex subject in feminist and anti-racist fandom. Many women of color are happy to see her increased role, to see a black woman being desired by someone as culturally iconic as Spock. When you look at the history of scifi, or any other media, to be honest, there simply are so few positive portrayals of black women out there that it is truly depressing.


Uhura was groundbreaking in the '60s, we all know that, and while many women (myself included) drew a lot of strength from the image of professionalism and independence she showed, there WAS racism involved in the fact that Uhura was not allowed to be the object of affection of any of the leading men. Kirk's allowed to lust for Rand, not for Uhura. There are rumors that Roddenberry wanted to play with Uhura in some kind of relationship but it was catagorically forbidden by the networks. Many feminists of color thus see Uhura's romantic relationship with Spock as a step forward, an imperfect one yes, but an important one, and there is a lot of bad feeling there toward the white feminists who tend to be very unhappy with what's been done with the character (myself incuded).


I guess, I just want you to be aware how deeply sensitive this issue really is in feminist fandom, how many layers of meaning there are, and how serious this topic is for many women of color. I learned this the hard way, believe me.


Personally, I like the idea of Uhura having a romance with one of the main characters, but I think it should be Scotty. I'm one of the few people who didn't think the romance of an older Uhura and older Scotty "came out of nowhere". I see them as compatible people who loved their work, but knew how to relax and have fun with their time off. There's as much "hinting" in TOS for Uhura/Scotty (see "The Changeling") as Uhura/Anyone-Else, and I think they could genuinely be happy together.


I think having Spock in a romantic relationship with ANYONE ruins the character in some really deep ways. Sure he's AU, sure he's half-human, but for me, personally, I'm just not interested in a Spock who is that emotionally developed.


And I guess it just depresses me that the only way anyone could think to give Uhura more screentime, the largest female role in TOS, was to make her "the girlfriend". All of Uhura's character development in XI is directly related to Spock's character development, except for some brief mentions of how she thought about going into music. Spock gets a story of his own, depth of his own.


Uhura gets screentime, but its to deepen HIS character, not hers. This is typical of Hollywood's portrayal of all female characters. I mean, even the filmakers themselves have said that Star Trek is at its heart the "Kirk and Spock story", that its about Kirk and Spock "falling in love" (their words not mine).


So where does Uhura factor into all of this? I really don't want a love triangle where Uhura has to stand in the middle of some subliminated homoerotic desire. I REALLY don't want them to kill her, and now I'm absolutely terrified that they will.


If Uhura is going to be Spock's Kirk in this AU, I'm fine with that. If she is going to be allowed to be the person Spock can truly open up to and be emotional for, I'm cool with that. If they're going to write Uhura as the person Spock remains most loyal to, the person he devotes his life to, I'M DOWN WITH THAT.


But they're not going to write the story that way. And they're going to run the bus over Uhura before they do anything to take Kirk out of the picture, or lessen the centrality of the Kirk/Spock dynamic. If they want Kirk and Spock to have the kind of relationship they have in TOS and the first six movies, I can tell you as a woman that I would be absolutely DEPRESSED to be either one of their girlfriends.


So I guess I feel like the writing's on the wall, and I'm really really mad about it.


Don't blame Zoe Saldana, btw. Blame incompetent writers who thought the idea "Hey, won't it be cool if Spock gets the girl instead of Kirk?!" was anything less than pure sexism to begin with.


"What will they find when I am ripped apart? 'I love you, captain' written on my heart."

coastcityo

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 7:02 pm

Abrams ruined enough on his own without blaming the actors.

"Lions and Gigers and Bears..." "Oh my."

toranaprem

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 9:11 pm

I would even go as far to say that Kirk is radically different.


I think Kirk is probably the MOST radically different. Unfortunately in a bad way.


And I'm sorry, but as a feminist I'm really, seriously, profoundly tired of the whole, "Well, he would have been an awesome man instead of bumbling screw-up, if only he'd had a father to show him what it means to be a man......."


There are adults and there are children. Single parents are fully capable of raising adults of either gender. It's when we get into weird gender role crap that things get all problematic, and ugly.


I'm not saying that never knowing your father doesn't have an impact on a child growing up, IT DOES, but for some reason literature is littered with dead mothers 'cause its convenient and that doesn't stop a hero from being awesome all on his own, but take away the dad and suddenly he's a wild child with no drive, no discipline, and so on and so forth...


Ah, the good 'ol patriarch. Can't raise an awesome man without one, whatever would poor Winona have done if Pike hadn't been there!


Puhleese, that trope is old as the hills and needs to die.


"What will they find when I am ripped apart? 'I love you, captain' written on my heart."

toranaprem

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 10:55 pm

Quote: /view_profile/ @

>I too am disappointed with Kirk's character in STXI. But I get the impression they're pushing his character to be better, more responsible, hopefully. Yes they found an excuse for Kirk to be wild and it was that he didn't have his father. But isn't it true that in general boys without fathers have a greater chance of growing up to be bad. This is probably also due to the fact that they are also raised with a lower income and less total parental support. Girls also in general grow up wilder. But again how does the lack of income factor into this. A lot of the fanfiction I have read has Winona falling apart after thje death of her husband and the kids were left to raise themselves. I wish Pine's Kirk had been more like Shatner's Kirk but they wanted him new and exciting to appeal to a younger audience. If they continue in this vain no-one will believe he deserves the captaincy, Spock's friendship and the acclaim of all. I've no objection to him being updated (although I would prefer it if they could de-age Shatner but that isn't going to happen). I just wished Pine's Kirk had more of Shatner's good properties, his compassion, responsibility, experience and charm instead of just the womanising, desire to command at all costs and looks. I don't think That Uhura changed all that much. She seems a bit more bossy but we're no longer in the 60s guys.


I think you hit the nail on the head when it comes to why children without fathers tend to suffer for it within patriarchies. Money. Money. Money.


Single mothers and their children are the poorest people on the planet.


I'd also like to throw it out there that single fathers tend to be lionized and get a lot more community support than most single mothers (who tend to be demonized and/or ignored) do.


Supposedly this whole business will be eradicated by the 23rd century. And if this is dystopia Trek? I don't want it.


Eh, Uhura's the typical Hollywood tough girl "girlfriend" trope. It's really neither here nor there considering how little character development TOS Uhura ever got. I just don't like the fact she's a woman being used mainly as a plot device in lieu of an actual character, but hey, that's not exactly new. Disappointing when there was an opportunity to do better, as it always is, but not new.


And YES. TOS Kirk was compassionate/loving, responsible, and unendingly charming. Those are the qualities I love about Kirk and they're definitely missing with Pine's rendition.


Frankly, I know I'm in the minority on this one but I don't even feel that Kirk was a womanizer. But I define "womanizing" as "pursuing women lecherously" which I don't really feel is a fair description of what Kirk was about.


Kirk loved women. Women loved Kirk. Kirk didn't really pursue much of anyone. He smiled, and they threw themselves. I think he was a rather feminine character in this way actually. He wasn't an aggressor, he just let loose his natural wiles and the ladies flocked. He was a minx!


Real womanizers just like to pretend Kirk was one because it's not that easy for them. They have to work for it.


"What will they find when I am ripped apart? 'I love you, captain' written on my heart."

HisRoyalHighnessTheKing

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Report this Feb. 01 2011, 11:45 pm

The original Uhura had no character to destroy. Her role on Star Trek was to be a social statement concerning blacks in 1960's America.


Zoe Saldana essentially has a blank slate in which to build her own version of the character.


May God Save The King

Tureaz'47

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 12:20 am

Having Spock as a love interest is crossing the line.
There is a difference between an assertive and sophisticated character to one that has an attitude with a dominating personality. We will see where the next instalment of ST takes her.

It's strange, being a catalyst for things that move outside.

HisRoyalHighnessTheKing

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 12:22 am

There is no line.


Uhura and Spock did have some sort of flirtatious relationship in TOS, so the new relationship simply builds on that, and it makes both characters more interesting IMO.


May God Save The King

Tureaz'47

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 12:38 am

The line is the difference between what could be and what is.


It's strange, being a catalyst for things that move outside.

Candystar

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 12:52 am

considering the fact that there wasnt much of uhura to "destroy" anyway....no.


also, she's approved by nichelle herself.


as to whoever said that spock/uhura could never happen.....please re-watch TOS & this time actually WATCH it.


There is a lot of controversy over the Spock/Uhura issue, most saying that it would never happen in the TOS universe. Actually it does happen in the TOS universe. Gene Roddenberry was trying to set Spock/Uhura up from the get-go.


Even that inter-racial kiss was originally Spock/Uhura but Shatner stole that show. This has been shown time & again throughout TOS, little hints between the two. It is also confirmed in one of the bio's either by Shatner or Gene Roddenberry. Just go to the library & read them yourself.


For you library challenged generation that expects everything to be handed over with a link or else they cry hysterically, well sweethearts, here are your links that more or less summarized what I've read in actual books. from M.A. (which is often wrong but this fact they got right); scroll about half-way down to see Nichelle Nicohls' own statement:


 http://memory-alpha.org/wiki/Plato's_Stepchildren_(episode)


from an interview of JJAbrams & Nicohls:


http://trekweb.com/articles/2010/10/18/Nichelle-Nichols-Addresses-Her-Opinion-on-JJ-Abrams-Star-Trek-Movie-and-the-Spock-Uhura-Romance.shtml


Also check this out for Spock/Uhura hints of old TOS as well as comparing Pine Kirk to Shatner Kirk, among other things. (Don't worry about the K/S section since that is seperate anyway.)


Star Trek: The Canon Facts:


http://www.ksarchive.com/viewstory.php?sid=1760


"Bored... (shoots wall)" What the HELL!!!! Are you doing? (shoots wall again) "BORED!" WHAT? "Bored! (shoot) BORED! (shoot/uncocks gun/hands over to John Watson) ...bored..."

picard_2305

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 1:00 am

I was one of the fans who did not like the Spock/Uhura relationship.

I guess no matter waht these days we have to get use to the new actors as these iconic characters.

But I felt at times she seemed like a superbitch in the hangar deck scene. Maybe I was too harsh on character assasination but to me this was not the Uhura I grew up loving, same with Simon Pegg as Scotty, he was not the Scotty I loved.

I have a Trek fan for 20 years and know what I like and I guess because it's all different now and the fact that the younger audiences prefer this Trek over the Trek I love probably makes me feel a bit sad because the new audiences aren't going to appreciate the Trek we grew up with.

I love the new movie but its's weakness is in it's writing. Great character moments but great storytelling has been sacrificed to get more bums on seats. And obviously the Spock/Uhura fuction was to get more teen girls to watch Star Trek. I love the film but it was not made for us fans.

Who am I to argue with the captain of the Enterprise?

HisRoyalHighnessTheKing

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 1:14 am

The line is the difference between what could be and what is.


As I said, there is no line, other than one arbitrarily drawn that randomly declares that for some reason Uhura and Spock are not allowed to have a relationship, despite no supporting argument to back that up.


May God Save The King

Spot_Data's_Cat

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 1:17 am

I didn't mind Zoe Saldana's Uhura, though I did HATE the hangar bay and turbolift scene, but I could not imagine that same Uhura singing to Spock and petting tribbles in a few years time, they were just so different.

"Life forms...you tiny little life forms...you precious little life forms...where are you?" -Data

picard_2305

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 1:29 am

Spot_Data's_Cat

Those are the two scenes which I did not like either.

Zoe Saldana does a good performance but she is not my Uhura

Who am I to argue with the captain of the Enterprise?

jamesspock1

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Report this Feb. 02 2011, 3:31 am

Uhura in this movie was not well portrayed, the thing that got to me the most is when she forgot to mention that one ship destroyed a Klingon fleet, I thought that was very weak.
This should be a wake up call, but she slept on it.

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