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Reviewer: PaintedBird Signed [Report This]
Date: 05/07/2020 10:06 PM Title: Chapter 1

I read your story last night and found it well-written and intense, but there was something that bothered me about it.  Eventually it dawned on me that the Kirk that you portrayed is quite different from the Kirk I have in my mind.  

Your Kirk is younger, less experienced, and very emotional.  The Kirk that I have lived with for so long is impetuous, knowledgeable, and occasional brilliant.  The point that I had difficulty with, I realized, was the extreme emotional reaction of your Kirk to the possibility of Spock's leaving before he even knew for sure that he was going.  For me, having been through many stressful and difficult times, the control that my Kirk has, even when it gives, is more natural.  Starfleet could not give their best ship to an individual who would break down in any situation, even for someone he loves.  View TWOK again and you can see that even through Kirk is devastated by Spock's death and weeps, he never dissolves into hysterics.

I realize that we are talking about two different timelines and different individuals.  Your Kirk, after all, is yours.  But I thought you might like my perspective on the situation, too.  

Good luck with all your future writing.



Author's Response:

Well, I thank you for your response. Indeed we do conceptualize two different Kirks, and yours seems to fit better with the original timeline rather than the alternate one that I was writing within. You are correct that Starfleet should not or would not have given their most advanced ship to a person ruled more by heart than mind, however when considering that very point two things come to mind:

Firstly, Kirk, while ingenious, does not always act with his mind over his heart, we see this in every incarnation of him. Specifically, in the AOS films we can see it in all three films (just as we see him mature over these films), but most importantly we see that he has the Enterprise temporarily taken from him in Into Darkness because he was temporarily ruled by emotion. Because of this, I do not consider it unreasonable to think that he may react emotionally sometimes, rather than rationally. All humans are guilty of being ruled by our emotions at some point, even those of us who are in positions where we cannot afford to be. Such an occurrence would be a rare snapshot, not an indicator of the norm.

Secondly - and this is more how I personally view the character in this timeline - I have always thought it made sense that there is a separation in Kirk. In matters of captaincy and the ship, he does tend to act rationally while relying on his heart to guide his morals alongside logical reasoning. In personal matters, however, I have always read him to be slightly more emotional and less rational - the episode The Conscience of the King with Kodos shows this juxtaposition where his emotions run high but his duties and rational thought demand he does not act on them. His emotions always run strong no matter the situation, but he is not usually ruled by them. I was admittedly building off of the general idea in the fandom (at least in most fics I have read) that the AOS version of Kirk did not have a pleasant childhood and either was abused or had to fend for himself, which - admittedly per my own experience - lends to anxiety in relationships. These points in combination led me to attempt to portray a high emotional situation that would trigger past traumas and an ensuing struggle wherein Kirk desperately tried and failed to find the rational thought by which to ground his emotions as he normally would.

 

I most certainly was not attempting to suggest that Kirk would always or regularly react with emotion or lose control rather than act rationally as a Captain must - but many instances in the AOS films and the TOS episodes and films alike show that there are times when both versions of Kirk do lose control and act on emotions. If this had been a section in a longer piece it would have been obvious that this was an unusual circumstance rather than a normal one, but truthfully I was not concerned with writing a long fic, this was the scene in my mind and so I wrote it. No fiction will match the canon and all will be colored by the views and experiences of the writer, but I hope this helps explain my thought process a bit.

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