Poll Position: Star Trekkin' Across the Universe

Apologies for the late posting, I'm feeling a little blue today and just didn't get to it at the usual time. But now, bring on the frothing nerd rage!

{democracy:206}

Old school versus new school. Dashing man of action versus cerebral man of reason. Do you let your fists do the talking or do you do your talking with your awesome bald head?

This is a tough call because you're talking about two very different eras in the Federation's history. Kirk was the last of the Devil-may-care buccaneer style captain, while Picard was much more of a Renaissance man. You'd like to have a beer with Kirk before hitting on the local green-skinned girls, while with Picard you'd be more likely to imbibe a well-bodied Merlot while playing the recorder.

On the other hand, Picard can flat-out kick ass when he needs to. He took on Klingons in hand-to-hand combat, and won! OK, maybe that's not the best example, because apparently some alien testicle-eating virus had infected the Klingon homeworld by the time Next Generation started, but still. They have bony heads, and those things hurt when you hit 'em.

Oh sure, Kirk got to wench his way across the better part of the known galaxy, vamping and tramping with every able-bodied female he met. And Picard's big adventure was to live an entire lifetime as an old married gardener whose big accomplishment was learning to play the flute before getting wiped off the face of the planet.

So I'd say Kirk is probably the young person's ideal of a swashbuckling adventurer, whereas Picard represents a more mature, measured, thinking person's model.

But all of that is moot, since Picard is bald and therefore he wins.

Discuss.

45 Responses to Poll Position: Star Trekkin' Across the Universe

  1. Nick Hentschel

    ME.

  2. The only question I ever thought was hard was, “Do I like Kirk or do I like Picard?”

  3. Let’s clear something up first. Both captains were capable if both kicking ass, and critical thought. Kirk had shown several times in classic Star Trek that he could think his way through a problem, while Picard was not above getting his hands dirty in the Enterprise’s many conflicts with the Borg. But, in regards to general attitude, Jeff is correct, Kirk was generally a man of action, whereas Picard was regarded as the “thinking man’s” captain.
    But, I’m a Star Wars guy, so my answer would he Han Solo.
    Since that’s not an option, I’d have to go with Kirk, who best matches Han’s general personality. I admit, I’m getting in their in years, seeming to have less hair every birthday. And a fine merlot (or even some earl grey, hot) sounds pretty good right now, but I’m not ready to give up my youthful admiration of a hero who’d happily punch or shoot anything that got in their way.

  4. Oh man, Kirk vs. Han is a GREAT question! Consider that booked for next week.

  5. Ooh, that’s going to be a tough one to argue, Jeff. But I’m happy to have helped contribute it.

  6. Let’s consider it this way: were you a junior officer aboard Jim Kirk’s Enterprise (…and God help you should your attire–pre-TWOK–be a fatal shade of red) and accompanied him on an away-mission, chances are you’re not coming back alive. The odds of survival serving under Jean-Luc Picard are more to my liking.

  7. Kirk: When he was in charge men were men, women wore miniskirts, and NO ONE drank synthehol. Besides, the only way a Klingon would be on Kirk’s bridge would be if its head was ripped off.

    Picard: Frenchmen who spoke with a British accent and got turned into a Borg. Plus, he had a fake bionic heart.

  8. Are we talking TV Picard who thinks problems through, is logical and ethical or movie Picard, who is a violent illogical maniac bipolar who gets half his crew killed every mission. The one who executes Borgified crew-mates, because, y’know, theres no possible way of turning them back. Who decides to take on a younger, physically stronger clone in hand to hand combatin a battle that determines the fate of all life on earth instead of sending a Klingon warrior or a robot, or anyone under 50. Because Kirk could totally take on idiot action movie Picard.

  9. a wise man once said he is measured by those he can call enemy. So in that vein let us look at the greatest single foes of each captain. Jean-Luc most tenacious single foe it could be argued was Q, and I will hand on heart go on record as saying the powers of the Q continuim are serious heavy duty reality manipulation mojo. But Q himself was just a thin dank and pointless character.
    James T kirk one word:- KHAN!!!!!

    nuff said…

  10. KIRKIE!!!!! ’cause he’s a cheating, horny space dog!

  11. Kirk, because its William Shatner. Need I say more?

  12. I remember Picard more than Kirk as Picard was my generation.

  13. Kirk, because suave cheese rules.

  14. If it were based on fighting styles alone, it would have to be a draw. However, I always found that Kirk had a sort of fake way of acting and Picard was always very believable. More responsible too. Therefore, I have to go with Picard. Just wasn’t crazy about Kirk’s attitude.

  15. Picard, BECAUSE who CAN possibly STAND listening TO someone talk like this FOR hours ON end. Seriously how do people not find William Shatner’s tendency to emphasis the non important annoying?

  16. When Kirk gets mad, he yells “KHAAAAAAAN! KHAAAAAAAAN!”. When Picard gets mad, he yells “NOO! NOOOOOO!” and breaks stuff with a phaser rifle, then gets all moody. And Picard wasn’t stuck with crazy Vulcans who wanted to find God or with whales or with creepy Borg predecessors. And he managed to have the patience to deal with Wesley Crusher. Oh, and sang “A British Tar” in “Insurrection”. I don’t recall Kirk ever singing Gilbert & Sullivan.

  17. Whether by “my Enterprise” ou mean the one to which I’m assigned (as if; I can’t pass Academy admissions requirements) or the one I own (even less likely), I’d go with Picard either way. More likely to bring me and/or the ship back in one piece.

  18. …and by ‘ou’ of course I mean ‘you.’

  19. Prime this directive. Kirk!

  20. hyperanthropos

    I vote for Picard. Both captains were great characters in their own way, but I always thought that Picard was more charming than Kirk. Besides, between Commander Ricker and Lieutenant Worf there was no need for another dashing man of action.

    @Jeff: Captain Kirk vs. Han Solo is a great idea. I’m just worried that the server will explode from all that testosterone.(:

    For the sake of it:
    “Khaaaaan!!!”

  21. Jeff, technically they’re both bald; Picard’s just man enough to admit it, so he wins…

  22. I think Captain Sisko is the best choice, because he handle it of the easierst way. He knock Q out, Picard always complicated it with long dialogs.
    But ok… he is very smart captain, know about diplomati. Kirk have to arrogant manners. So i choice Picard, he is a Frenchman from the good old school. 😉

    TW: He has also the best facepalm.
    http://picardfacepalm.com/

  23. sean from edwards

    I second Kytana, Sisko could take them both , especially once we went all Spenser again with the cool bald head and Goatee.

  24. sean from edwards

    I second Kytana, Sisko could take them both , especially once we went all Spenser again with the cool bald head and Goatee.

  25. I Remember the Big Bang Theory episode where they flashed back to Leonard becoming Sheldon’s roomie, and the tests Sheldon gave Leonard beforehand, and sure enough, one of the questions was along this line.
    Leonard’s answer was that the original series was better than TNG, but the better captain was Picard. And Sheldon said that was correct. So, empirical evidence from fake characters on a TV show means obviously Picard is the better choice. 😉

  26. Well, lets see.
    Kirk: Will jump straight in with a phaser. Takes a couple of expendable redshirts on a landing party as cannon/phaser fodder. Emotionless Vulcan on the bridge. Full head of hair. Destroyed his refitted Enterprise within two films. Then had his second Enterprise for two films.

    Picard: Will negotiate first, then phaser them because they never want to talk. Usually just sends Riker down with a few main characters. Emotionless android on the bridge. Bald. Frenchman with an English accent. Kept his Enterprise for the entire series before it got blown up partway through a film. Kept his second Enterprise for the rest of his films.

    Considering how long Picard managed to keep his Enterprise, and that if your shirt was red on his ship, you weren’t guaranteed to die, well…

  27. @Trekkie: I forgot about the shirt switches in TNG! That adds another point to Picard; he wore a red shirt through 178 episodes and three movies without dying, that’s saying something. Also, just to piss off the Kirk camp, I’m going to remind everyone he had one of the least heroic deaths in movie history (crushed by a bridge, really?)…

  28. I think the question is: what missions do you want to go on?

    Picard: Enterprise is the flagship, charged with representing the Federation, protecting borders, heavy research, Ambassador roles, support to colonies.

    Kirk: the enterprise is pushing boundaries, it explored, it was out there!

    I’d go Kirk. Yeah, less comforts, less chance of survival, less length in female uniforms 🙂

    BUT, it’d be so cool to push the boundaries of the Federation back…

  29. C’mon folks. It’s Kirk all the way. Kirk would storm the bridge, kick open Picard’s little office door, spit it his tea, and phase the hell out of him. Then bang Troi on his way out.

  30. @Dan: After Generations, I don’t think Kirk is going anywhere near any kind of bridge…

  31. In a vein similar to Jake(28) – what’s the purpose of your Enterprise supposed to be?

    I once saw an alignment chart that featured these two, among other characters. Kirk was NG, Picard was LN. So, ultimately, by that logic, which pole are you more personally geared towards?

  32. Kirk would win in a straight up fist fight. But I would rather have Picard in charge because he is more likely to bring the ship back in one piece.

  33. @gero, what is this Generations you speak of? 😉

  34. Picard might not be as fun, but he is less likely to send you to die and then forget you ever existed in time to share a joke with the bridge crew on his way out of the system.

    (As for his accent, I like to tell myself that he picked up the English accent when speaking English because of his love of Shakespeare, but would have a French accent when speaking French. It works largely because I can’t recall him using more than a handful of French words…and of course it helps that I don’t speak French.)

  35. I’m glad to see, you all agree that MY captain is a better choice.

  36. Kirk wore a toupe. Kirk got laid. Kirk reproduced.
    Picard didn’t. And didn’t. And didn’t.
    So who’s the man?

  37. Patriot_Missile

    I bought this at Target to frazzle my Picard-praising wife:
    http://imgur.com/vtl46
    I voted Kirk for these and a gajillion other manly reasons.

  38. Han beats Kirk. And that’s how I’ll vote next week if it is a poll. Han shoot’s first and Kirk never get’s a chance. Actually Kirk would probably try hitting on Leia and she’d take him out just for being a womanizer.

    As for Kirk v Picard, Kirk. Kirk tends to get the babes no matter when he is (yes I said when over where). Plus he’d have a lot of luck on his side, luck always seems to favor Kirk (accept in Generations or against Han).

  39. @X-stacy (34) Yeah, Picard wouldn’t leave you to die. He would get captured by the enemy and then lead them to slaughter half of the Federation. Yeah, I went there. 🙂

  40. I say Kirk. Why? I’m glad you didn’t ask! 😀

    Picard is an awesome captain. Not just that, but the man is awe, and then some! That ol’ boy could run circles around Q and the Continuum without breaking a sweat. However, he lacks a critical character trait of anyone who spends such long periods out at sea/space. He fights his own madness. I get it, I get it, he’s British, and they always try to be stoic no matter the cost.

    Kirk went berserk on more than just a few missions and adventures, but he owned up to it. Tiberius knows what it takes to get the job done, and rarely has to sacrifice anything. Also, he’s not ashamed to be a bachelor!

    Picard gets achy breaky over a few girls that he loved. Jimmy nightcaps with any green-skinned woman with an open bed, has had only two true loves, and doesn’t skip a beat. His love life doesn’t affect his career. Jean-Luc will attempt to move heaven and earth to make his few loves happy.

    Also, Kirk wasn’t as strict as Picard. He didn’t take offense to just about every little disobedience. and didn’t crap his pants every time a kid was on the deck. He’s always been open to new ideas, willing to try them out, and still manages to keep to certain traditions without griping about it.

    I suppose it all comes down to James Tiberius Kirk being a lot more laid back, while Jean-Luc Picard being much more strict and traditional. That’s really what this question boils down to, if you think about it.

  41. Hey Picard fans! Look what I found! Look, look! 😀
    http://chaostime.com/jokes/separate/joke48.html
    *Sits back and watches reaction*
    My work here is done 😀

  42. 😛

  43. I love that the bulk of Team Kirk’s arguments have been that he’s a whore. His rather note-worthy accomplishments really don’t stack up when compared to the amount of ass he’s tapped on his seven year deployment.

    “…and Kirk, regardless of being caught in a deadly ambush by Khan, managed to turn in around and give Khan–literally– the fight of his life.”

    “Pshaw! In Episode 23, Kirk shook off a case of Rigellian Clap that he got on shore leave from Princess Skankulon of Nympho 69. That’s why he’s the man!”

    🙂

  44. Kirk may be fun, but Picard is a better leader. It always used to disturb me when I was a kid that if Kirk’s away team got wiped out, that left no one qualified to run the ship. I was pretty sure something wasn’t right with that.

    On the ladies’ man front–and really, that’s not the basis for choosing a good captain–I feel the need to point out that Picard was chosen to be the Borg queen’s mate. The freakin’ Borg queen.

    Alas, I’d never end up in Starfleet. I’m morally opposed to the prime directive.

  45. Picard for me. I did not like the original show or Kirk’s stuttering talk.