Poll Position: Kirk vs. Han

Due to an awesome suggestion in last week's poll, this time out we're going to pit two of the smoothest, coolest, bad-boy-est captains ever to grace the spaceways with their suave selves:

{democracy:207}

Now, to some degree how you answer depends on which universe you'd rather inhabit. You've got the Kirk-era Federation, a virtual utopia that still has enough rough edges on the frontier to make things interesting. On the other hand you've got the Empire-era Star Wars universe, complete with evil overlords and magical Force powers. One has a more sci-fi edge to it, the other ventures into science fantasy.

Let's be clear here, however -- you're serving under one of these .... um, "gentlemen" ... so you're not going to be commanding the Enterprise or being a Jedi Knight. Since we're all egoists to some degree, you're also not going to be doomed to a vanishingly short career as a Red Shirt or Storm Trooper, either. I see us fitting in somewhere between Spock/McCoy level bridge crew and Chewy-level best buddy.

Moving on from the universe, we get to the character of the two men in question. Both are hot-dog horn-dogs with a flair for the dramatic and a knack for getting things done. Han served on the shady side of the law, always one step from getting corralled by the authorities and living life on the edge. Kirk too exists on the ragged edge, though in his case he's on the lawful side of the tracks. Most of the time.

Under Kirk you have an entire system of authority, rules, and best practices, handed down for decades from the best minds of Starfleet, an entire hierarchy with experience putting large numbers of crew under the command of their god-like captains. Under Han, you're one of a tiny handful (if that) of crew, operating under nothing more than a trumped-up version of the Pirate's Code.

Their personal styles are pretty similar, though Han's got a lot more rough edges to him. He can be short-tempered and abrasive. Kirk's much smoother, though if you think there's not a hot core there, just fling the nearest green-skinned female at him.

For me, it comes down to whether you want to operate under a system, or if you'd rather be footloose and fancy free. So what about you, is it the Pirate's life for you, or a comfortable yet exciting slot in the vast machinery of Starfleet?

32 Responses to Poll Position: Kirk vs. Han

  1. Can I vote for Mal Reynolds?

  2. James Tiberius Kirk. Period.

    (And Han shot first!)

  3. Lol, maybe put this week’s winner up against Mal next week.

    I voted Han. I’d rather serve on the Falcon than the enterprise. It’s a helluva lot faster, plus no one ordering us around, and no worries about breaking the Prime Directive. Sure, Kirk broke it occasionally, but he always had to consider the repercussions of his actions before he discarded them ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Han. And of course Han shot first. That’s why he wins.

  5. Quirky factoid regarding the much debated, “Star Trek” (2009), but Chris Pine admitted to drawing from Han Solo in his performance as Jim Kirk. And heresy be damned, but I was a bit more partial to Pine’s Kirk because he integrated that laid-back, cocky swagger from Solo.

    However…gotta’ go with Kirk on this one. Love me some Star Wars, and am looking forward to SW:TOR, but to serve aboard the Enterprise under Jim Kirk, Mr. Spock, and Dr. McCoy would be a dream come true. Trying to outrun and outwit Vader and the Empire just spells trouble to me…unless you were a Jedi, or at least accompanied by a wizened, elder Jedi and his young pupil.

  6. Kirk.
    Hands down.
    He’s cooler. Smoother. Gets more girly goods. Actually wins a fistfight.
    The Enterprise is bigger. Badder. Faster. Stronger.

    Kirk it is.

  7. And yeah… Love love LOVE Star Wars… but… gotta go with Kirk.

  8. Mal Reynolds- take one part Jim Kirk, mix with two parts Han Solo, and serve chilled.

    ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Sorry, I not logical point of view to back up my choice, I’m going with Han because I love Star Wars waaaaay more than Star Trek.

  10. Here a more Star wars as Star Trek fans…hm….

  11. Bah, I say Han… Han is a dirty scoundrel, but he’s my kind of scum… Plus his taste in women is excellent, he has the fastest ship in the galaxy, and a badass wookie that could rip your arms straight out of your sockets! Vulcan nerve pinch that Spock!

  12. Sorry to all the Trekkies but I gotta say Han. He’s bold, cocky, and he doesn’t play by anyone’s rules. My kinda guy. Kirk was alright but I was never much of a Star Trek fan. I have to admit that Chris Pine as Kirk was the best I’ve seen and Joshua said it before: Pine used Han as a basis for his character. I knew there was a reason I liked his performance.

  13. Well, since I’m the one that brought up Han Solo the week before, would anyone expect me to pick Kirk now? I mean, yeah, the Enterprise’s scenery would be nicer; after all, would you rather look at yeomen in miniskirts, or a hairy wookie? But still, Captain Solo isn’t going to redact your shore leave for getting into a fight with some aliens down at the bar, he’d probably be more likely to join in. And let’s face it, in a fight between the two, Han would shoot first while Kirk chews up the scene with his overly-dramatic exposition.

    Now, Solo v. Reynolds, that’s a tough one to figure out.

  14. I’m voting for Kirk (Duh, did anyone have any doubts?).

    I however, WILL second MLS’s vote for Mal Reynolds. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  15. Han shot first. AND second. That’s why he’s the man. ๐Ÿ™‚ Needless to say, he’s getting my vote. Plus, I’ve actually WATCHED Star Wars.

  16. Han because Harrison Ford has still kept in pretty good shape, whereas Shatner has kinda let himself go.

  17. For folks like Myro, Joshua and The Atomic Punk, I’ve just started another blog to update folks on how the comic is progressing. I’ve noticed that a few people on here are artists in their own right and if you have ideas for vehicles for key characters, please let me know and I will be more than happy to give you full credit for the design. Anyway, here’s the blog. http://www.imdb.com/media/rm797422080/nm0532683

  18. SpellCheckingQuill

    If I were a guy, I’d probably work for Kirk… but I am not wearing the teensy-tiny women’s uniform and the giant beehive updo to work every day. Granted, I wouldn’t put it past Han to try to introduce the mini-skirt uniform too, but at least then I can sic Chewie on him for getting fresh. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Actually, it would really come down to which second-in-command I’d want. Spock is great… and then there’s those lovely pointy ears… *trails off into daydreams*clears throat awkwardly* But I hear Chewie gives better hugs. ‘Tis quite a dilemma.

  19. Gotta go with Han…Sorry Kirk, but going with you likely means wearing that Red uniform of new guy doom.

  20. William A. Peterson

    Hey, he said you’re NOT going to be a Red Shirt!
    Anyways, Kirk all the way, given the way things are described.
    LOTS fewer people shoot at a Heavy Cruiser than a tramp frieghter (however souped up). Medical plan’s a lot better, and the ship’s a lot less rickety.

  21. No one wears a t-shirt that says “Kirk tri-cordered first.”

    @McKnight57(17&18): Thanks for the blog. I’ll frequent. I don’t Google or Facebook. Nor do I have the foggiest what the other social media links are. Don’t know how to add comments to the board.

    e-mail my ghostbox (freethespam@cox.net) if you have instructions how to post without having to sign up for yet another account. ;9

  22. McKnight (17): Thanks, I’ll check it when I get back home tonight.

    SpellCheckingQuill (19): I don’t know about day-to-day interactions, but in a fight, I’d rather have Chewie than Spock. The Vulcan neck pinch is cool, but it lacks the sheer “making Hershey bars in your pants” intimidation of ripping someone’s arm from their socket.

    Actually, having given some thought to the matter of Han vs. Mal, I’d still say Han. It’s not that I don’t like Firefly (because I loved it), or that I don’t like the Malcom Reynolds character (he’s a lot like Han actually, so I’d probably enjoy hanging out with him). Jayne might be a self-serving tool, and River is always a danger of going into full-on freak-out mode, but the other crew members are decent people. I’m not convinced the Confederation is any more or less competent than the Empire (I think the reason why the Browncoats lost was because they were so much more poorly equipped than the Rebel Alliance was compared oto their enemy, relatively speaking).
    No, the reason is this: The scariest thing you will probably encounter in the movie canon of the Star Wars galaxy is probably Vader, who will choke the life out of you. And that will suck, but it could be worse. Even in the EU, the worst you might encounter is the Yuzzum Vong, who are capable of some painful atrocities, but will likely kill you outright anyway.
    The scariest thing you will meet in the Firefly ‘verse is a Reaver ship. If they decide to board you, after they overrun you (and they will overrun your defenses), they will do three things to you: they will rape you to death, they will eat your flesh from your body, and they will stitch your skin into their clothes. And if you are very lucky, they will do these things in precisely that order.
    Yeah, I’ll take my chances with Vader.

  23. hyperanthropos

    Simply can’t decide.(:

  24. Han. No questions asked. Kirk may have luck under normal circumstances, but it fails him against Han. He’s got the better ship, a co-pilot/partner who could rip the arms out of all of Kirk’s crew’s bodies (one at a time), doesn’t regulary “set phasers for stun,” was the only non-Jedi in the OT shown to use a lightsaber (Luke did become a Jedi and basically was being made Obi-Wan’s apprintice when he first touched a lightsaber), is more brash, has a bigger set on him than Kirk (come on, he chased down a squad of stormies like a mad man before they got enough reinforcements to feel they outnumbered him and Chewie seemed at first unsure of following then later drew and fired on Vader; just fireing on Vader he’s gotta have a set on him), is cooler than Kirk, actually pilot’s a ship on a regular basis, is a gunfighter and is a brawler (check the EU and the Han Solo Adventures, Han regulary practices for drawing and fast drawing), and doesn’t often get distracted by beautiful aliens.

  25. spidercow2010

    I’d just rather live in the Star Trek universe than the SWU.
    Better chance of staying alive, for one thing. The Falcon has gotta get a pretty good Wookiee funk on after a few weeks in space. Han’s lifestyle sounds inordinately hardscrabble for my taste, at least in comparison. Han may be footloose, but I bet there’s not much fancy-free happening. More people to talk to on the Enterprise. No money to deal with; I suppose shore leave is comped. Han probably hasn’t paid Chewie in years. Excellent medical. And if I were a Star Wars character, from long ago and far away, I’d be long dead. Star Trek is the future, and Star Fleet HQ is in the city where I was in fact born.
    So yeah, Kirk.

  26. spidercow2010

    Plus, everyone in Star Trek Land has an equal amount of midichlorians.

  27. all the reasons for picking Kirk are already worded by spidercow2010. being chased by gangsters and evil overlords who want your blood takes the fun out of it for me. But overall i’d pick Mal Reynolds, less rules than the enterprise, and less dangerous than life on the Millenium falcon. And Mal is a better, (and meaner) fighter than both of them

  28. Patriot_Missile

    Eff Starfleet, I said. It’s the UN on a galactic scale, and considering all the “rules” the famous Starfleet Captains end up breaking for whatever reason, Starfleet may as well be Palpatine’s Empire Lite. I’m flying with Han.

  29. I voted Kirk because he is a lot less likely to sacrifice a crewmember than a scoundrel like Han.

  30. Han. I really like the structure Starfleet would provide and am willing to overlook the whole prime directive thing (bah!) for the purposes of this poll, but it’s still not enough to beat out the kind of community that’s necessarily created in a crew as small as Han’s. And for all that Han shot first and was a scoundrel, I don’t think there’s ever anything about him betraying Chewie. It’s been a while since I saw Star Wars, but I got the feeling that once he accepted someone on as crew, they were safe. And for all his talk, he did end up being a kind of noble guy in the end. Just, you know, not the kind of noble that comes with a savior complex.

  31. Kirk can’t catch a break in these polls huh LOL, Picard and Solo are cooler in my book. I didn’t grow up watching Mr. Priceline though. Star Wars I think are more entertaining than Star Trek but Trek had the continuing episodes. I liked Next Gen, and the character they got to play Anakin in episode II and III was just such a, sorry jeff for sorta bad language, Douch Bag!