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Episode 1.14 “The War Without, The War Within” Discussion Thread

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One weird thing; Stamets said that Starbase One was "100 AUs from Earth" (an AU is about 93 million miles; the distance from Earth to the sun).  

That’d put it just outside of the solar system.   Pluto is about an average of 40 AUs from Earth; 100 would be more than double that.

So why was it in orbit over what looked like Earth? 

dsc-114-rev-starbase1.jpg

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7 minutes ago, Sehlat Vie said:

One weird thing; Stamets said that Starbase One was "100 AUs from Earth" (an AU is about 93 million miles; the distance from Earth to the sun).  

That’d put it just outside of the solar system.   Pluto is about an average of 40 AUs from Earth; 100 would be more than double that.

So why was it in orbit over what looked like Earth? 

dsc-114-rev-starbase1.jpg

Good point. 

1) Lack of basic science knowledge on the part of the writers. I doubt it.

2) Planet is not Earth. It is planet 9 which we have not discovered yet because it is too far out. It looks like Earth either because its terraformed or just happened to be blue in color.

3) It's not Earth's solar system. It's a system with a really big star that generates enough energy that makes 100 au's either in the habitable zone or terraformable. 

4) This is not the prime universe. 

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3 hours ago, Sehlat Vie said:

One weird thing; Stamets said that Starbase One was "100 AUs from Earth" (an AU is about 93 million miles; the distance from Earth to the sun).  

That’d put it just outside of the solar system.   Pluto is about an average of 40 AUs from Earth; 100 would be more than double that.

So why was it in orbit over what looked like Earth? 

dsc-114-rev-starbase1.jpg

My initial reaction was confusion, they should have been in the Kuiper Belt but it looked like they dropped out of warp at Earth. They may have been forward thinking and anticipating the confirmation of Planet 9, which may be imminent in real life. If that was the case, it might have been wiser to wait until it actually happens. We don't even know if it's a gas giant or rocky, we just have a lot of evidence that it exists and know which part of the sky it must be in.

Something tells me this wasn't a mistake, and not Planet 9. This was deliberate, they are indeed 100 AU's from Earth. I recall that the skies were different in different universes. Maybe they didn't just overshoot by 9 months. I suppose that in the shock of the moment, no one on board Discovery's bridge would have said "hey, what planet is that? I don't remember a rocky planet this far out?" The presumed 80000 deaths would have overwhelmed any questions in that moment. It's something I want answered now though.

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I assumed the fact that it was numbered Starbase 1 meant to emphasize its importance, like it is the first starbase built or is the one closest to earth. We are clearly meant to get the impression it is close to Earth, and that it is where much of Starfleet Command is currently located--all to ramp up the conflict and make things seem so dire that justifies the characters taking extreme measures be it the jump to Cronos or the use of the Emperor.

There are enough clues that the writers did not want the Klingons to go all the way to Earth in this storyline. They probably knew that would probably make the story a bit too dark and extreme, and would set of canon alarms among some fans. So they made it an important base and implied that Earth might be the next one to fall. Maybe the 100AUs was a mistake, or maybe not. Maybe the writer wanted it to be that close, and the production team inserted a planet that was not in the script.  

Has Starbase 1 ever been mentioned before? 

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5 hours ago, Hammer said:

My initial reaction was confusion, they should have been in the Kuiper Belt but it looked like they dropped out of warp at Earth. They may have been forward thinking and anticipating the confirmation of Planet 9, which may be imminent in real life. If that was the case, it might have been wiser to wait until it actually happens. We don't even know if it's a gas giant or rocky, we just have a lot of evidence that it exists and know which part of the sky it must be in.

Something tells me this wasn't a mistake, and not Planet 9. This was deliberate, they are indeed 100 AU's from Earth. I recall that the skies were different in different universes. Maybe they didn't just overshoot by 9 months. I suppose that in the shock of the moment, no one on board Discovery's bridge would have said "hey, what planet is that? I don't remember a rocky planet this far out?" The presumed 80000 deaths would have overwhelmed any questions in that moment. It's something I want answered now though.

Yeah, as mistakes go it was a big one.

And yes, 100 AUs out would’ve put them deep in the Kuiper Belt.  I could be wrong, but I’ve watched the episode twice, and I could’ve sworn that Stamets said Starbase One was 100 A.Us from Earth, not in orbit.

I’m chalking it up to a writer’s gaffe. 

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I will say, even though we only saw a piece of it, the starbase has a very TOS look to it. More akin to station K-7 than the big berthas of the movie era. 

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6 minutes ago, Justin Snead said:

I will say, even though we only saw a piece of it, the starbase has a very TOS look to it. More akin to station K-7 than the big berthas of the movie era. 

Yeah, kind of like the space office complex/Regula One model of TMP and later TWOK.

regula-twok1.jpg

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Speaking of something having a TOS look to it:

A fan made this quick snippet and posted it to Reddit, basically what the Enterprise (or any ship like it) could look like in the Discovery visual style.  I have to say...that looks pretty great and would fit in well with Discovery while remaining utterly true to the original. And this is just a super quick fan mock up! I want this!

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1 hour ago, kenman said:

Speaking of something having a TOS look to it:

A fan made this quick snippet and posted it to Reddit, basically what the Enterprise (or any ship like it) could look like in the Discovery visual style.  I have to say...that looks pretty great and would fit in well with Discovery while remaining utterly true to the original. And this is just a super quick fan mock up! I want this!

:thumbup:

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1 hour ago, Mike Thompson said:

Thank you Sehlet really enjoy your Blogs

Thank you for reading them! :)

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Because my husband's been too sick to watch Discovery for the past week, I've only just now seen this episode.  Oh, my!  Such a lot going on here!  I'm still digesting it all, but a few things stuck out for me:

1.  I'm sorry, but that's not Sarek.  The guy who told Spock he married Amanda because it seemed the logical thing to do at the time is not going to be all gushy about how love is always a good idea.  

And the Sarek who disowned Spock -- not for a month or two but for EIGHTEEN YEARS -- over whether it's ever reasonable to use force is not the man we're watching now.  This guy is much more nuanced and reasonable, and I think he's probably a more interesting character ... but only his ears and his ability to do mind melds make him seem Vulcan.

2.  Saru's continuing development and increasing ability to lead is great to see!  The guy who didn't wait for Cornwell to get them all killed but who ordered the ship away once it was clear they were in danger is SO different from the guy who asked the computer what made a good leader, earlier in the season.

3.  Loved, loved, loved Tilly's standing up and walking over to Tyler's table.  That's true Starfleet, and she's gonna make a hell of a captain someday!  It takes guts to go against what everyone else is doing -- and as a CADET on a ship full of real officers, no less -- but it was the right thing to do, and I'm so proud of her for doing it.  The writers are making Tilly a real hero, and Mary Wiseman continues to rise to every challenge.

4.  The Starfleet we saw in TOS just can't be an organization that was nearly wiped out by a horrific war ten years ago, so they're going to have to undo the war somehow.  I think L'Rell's comment about how Klingons won't stop once they've tasted your blood might have been a clue that the thing that needs to happen is to make it so that they never have tasted Starfleet's blood.

It would be kinda disappointing to have everything we just saw have not have actually occurred, but if the crew of the Discovery remembers it all, we can still have the character growth those events caused.

Can't wait for tomorrow!  I wonder if the last episode might be as much longer as one of the earlier episodes was shorter, since it's hard to imagine that they can wrap everything up in only 45 minutes.

Now I finally get to go read what people are thinking about this episode!  It's been hard, waiting for my husband to become well enough to watch it!

 

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3 hours ago, Corylea said:

Because my husband's been too sick to watch Discovery for the past week, I've only just now seen this episode.  Oh, my!  Such a lot going on here!  I'm still digesting it all, but a few things stuck out for me:

1.  I'm sorry, but that's not Sarek.  The guy who told Spock he married Amanda because it seemed the logical thing to do at the time is not going to be all gushy about how love is always a good idea.  

And the Sarek who disowned Spock -- not for a month or two but for EIGHTEEN YEARS -- over whether it's ever reasonable to use force is not the man we're watching now.  This guy is much more nuanced and reasonable, and I think he's probably a more interesting character ... but only his ears and his ability to do mind melds make him seem Vulcan.

2.  Saru's continuing development and increasing ability to lead is great to see!  The guy who didn't wait for Cornwell to get them all killed but who ordered the ship away once it was clear they were in danger is SO different from the guy who asked the computer what made a good leader, earlier in the season.

3.  Loved, loved, loved Tilly's standing up and walking over to Tyler's table.  That's true Starfleet, and she's gonna make a hell of a captain someday!  It takes guts to go against what everyone else is doing -- and as a CADET on a ship full of real officers, no less -- but it was the right thing to do, and I'm so proud of her for doing it.  The writers are making Tilly a real hero, and Mary Wiseman continues to rise to every challenge.

4.  The Starfleet we saw in TOS just can't be an organization that was nearly wiped out by a horrific war ten years ago, so they're going to have to undo the war somehow.  I think L'Rell's comment about how Klingons won't stop once they've tasted your blood might have been a clue that the thing that needs to happen is to make it so that they never have tasted Starfleet's blood.

It would be kinda disappointing to have everything we just saw have not have actually occurred, but if the crew of the Discovery remembers it all, we can still have the character growth those events caused.

Can't wait for tomorrow!  I wonder if the last episode might be as much longer as one of the earlier episodes was shorter, since it's hard to imagine that they can wrap everything up in only 45 minutes.

Now I finally get to go read what people are thinking about this episode!  It's been hard, waiting for my husband to become well enough to watch it!

 

1.  Sarek also revealed he LOVED both Spock and Amanda in TNG when his emotions were bleeding out due to his disease.  I do think Sarek acted out of character even within this show, but I don't think making a comment that love is good is going too gushy and out of character. 

2. Agreed, Saru should be Captain!

3.  Tilly is currently the show's classic Trek ideal personified. Really well portrayed in this last episode. 

4. I dunno...they would say things like "there are 12 ships in the fleet" so maybe they were rebuilding for a while after a bit of decimation.  And maybe the answer isn't to make sure they never tasted the blood, but maybe just diminish their appetite for said blood? They take things easy and say "look limit hostilities as much as possible. Just  explore from a distance, try not to piss anyone off." Thus the more laid back tone of TOS.  I dunno just spit balling alternatives. 

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4 hours ago, Corylea said:

1.  I'm sorry, but that's not Sarek.  The guy who told Spock he married Amanda because it seemed the logical thing to do at the time is not going to be all gushy about how love is always a good idea.  

And the Sarek who disowned Spock -- not for a month or two but for EIGHTEEN YEARS -- over whether it's ever reasonable to use force is not the man we're watching now.  This guy is much more nuanced and reasonable, and I think he's probably a more interesting character ... but only his ears and his ability to do mind melds make him seem Vulcan.

^
This sticks in my craw more than the cosmetic changes to the uniforms or the ships.  Sarek just isn’t ACTING like Sarek.  This is not an affront to James Frain, who plays this character as well as he can... but the character he plays isn’t the Starfleet-disapproving Vulcan ambassador we saw in TOS.   This is not the Sarek who believed that “peace should not depend on force.”  In fact, New Sarek acts more like VGR’s Tuvok than Spock’s pop from TOS.  

Just saying...

4 hours ago, Corylea said:

3.  Loved, loved, loved Tilly's standing up and walking over to Tyler's table.  That's true Starfleet, and she's gonna make a hell of a captain someday!  It takes guts to go against what everyone else is doing -- and as a CADET on a ship full of real officers, no less -- but it was the right thing to do, and I'm so proud of her for doing it.  The writers are making Tilly a real hero, and Mary Wiseman continues to rise to every challenge.

Tilly is just adorable.  She is the best audience avatar and Federation values-spokesperson on the show.    Hope she makes captain someday.  A part of me really wishes the show had been told through HER eyes and not Burnham’s, but oh well.

4 hours ago, Corylea said:

4.  The Starfleet we saw in TOS just can't be an organization that was nearly wiped out by a horrific war ten years ago, so they're going to have to undo the war somehow.  I think L'Rell's comment about how Klingons won't stop once they've tasted your blood might have been a clue that the thing that needs to happen is to make it so that they never have tasted Starfleet's blood.

It would be kinda disappointing to have everything we just saw have not have actually occurred, but if the crew of the Discovery remembers it all, we can still have the character growth those events caused.

^
This is also a concern of mine, because if the spore drive undoes everything then the drama we’ve seen is all meaningless and inert.  

The curse of the VGR ‘status quo’ reset button again...

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35 minutes ago, Sehlat Vie said:

^
This sticks in my craw more than the cosmetic changes to the uniforms or the ships.  Sarek just isn’t ACTING like Sarek.  This is not an affront to James Frain, who plays this character as well as he can... but the character he plays isn’t the Starfleet-disapproving Vulcan ambassador we saw in TOS.   This is not the Sarek who believed that “peace should not depend on force.”  In fact, New Sarek acts more like VGR’s Tuvok than Spock’s pop from TOS.  

Just saying...

Tilly is just adorable.  She is the best audience avatar and Federation values-spokesperson on the show.    Hope she makes captain someday.  A part of me really wishes the show had been told through HER eyes and not Burnham’s, but oh well.

^
This is also a concern of mine, because if the spore drive undoes everything then the drama we’ve seen is all meaningless and inert.  

The curse of the VGR ‘status quo’ reset button again...

It is 10 years between Discovery and TOS. Maybe Sarek changed in the 10 years. Maybe the war changed him. As he got older, he got more cynical and bitter and covered it up by acting more and more as the aloof, disapproving Vulcan.

I get the feeling that other Vulcan's think that he's gone native. They disapprove of the way he acts. Sometime in the next 10 years he comes to the conclusion that his critics were right. 

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1 minute ago, scenario said:

It is 10 years between Discovery and TOS. Maybe Sarek changed in the 10 years. Maybe the war changed him. As he got older, he got more cynical and bitter and covered it up by acting more and more as the aloof, disapproving Vulcan.

It’s not consistent with the ambassador who had an 18 year feud with his son because he chose a career in Starfleet.   That’s a full 8 years before the events of DSC.   But in DSC, he’s Starfleet’s go-to guy for forced mind melds, destroying Klingon ships (“Battle of the Binary Stars”) and all kinds of other things the previously pacifist Vulcan would NEVER approve of...

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4 minutes ago, Sehlat Vie said:

It’s not consistent with the ambassador who had an 18 year feud with his son because he chose a career in Starfleet.   That’s a full 8 years before the events of DSC.   But in DSC, he’s Starfleet’s go-to guy for forced mind melds, destroying Klingon ships (“Battle of the Binary Stars”) and all kinds of other things the previously pacifist Vulcan would NEVER approve of...

I must disagree on the destroying Starfleet ships, that was a personal call, not an official one. No argument on the Forced mind meld.  That was wrong.  Though I can barely recall that many other things that violate the character in terms of not being pacifist.  The Mirror version maybe, but that is the mirror. 

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3 minutes ago, kenman said:

I must disagree on the destroying Starfleet ships, that was a personal call, not an official one. No argument on the Forced mind meld.  That was wrong.  Though I can barely recall that many other things that violate the character in terms of not being pacifist.  The Mirror version maybe, but that is the mirror. 

In TOS it was made clear that Sarek disapproved of Starfleet (even if he used it as transportation on diplomatic missions); his wife said he believed that “peace shouldn’t depend on force.”  So the idea of him joining armed Starfleet boarding parties just seems wildly out of character to me.  Not to mention that he’s much more forgiving of his adopted daughter’s transgressions than those of his own son Spock (!).  

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1 minute ago, Sehlat Vie said:

In TOS it was made clear that Sarek disapproved of Starfleet (even if he used it as transportation on diplomatic missions); his wife said he believed that “peace shouldn’t depend on force.”  So the idea of him joining armed Starfleet boarding parties just seems wildly out of character to me.  Not to mention that he’s much more forgiving of his adopted daughter’s transgressions than those of his own son Spock (!).  

I can't imagine he has higher standards for his own son.  That sounds very unlike fathers. 

Again, I agree with that whole scene feeling off.  But outside of that episode and that scene, in earlier episodes it didn't seem as bad to me. As much as I kind of feel that they are done with the Mirror, part of me wonders if he was Mirror Sarek. 

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5 minutes ago, kenman said:

I can't imagine he has higher standards for his own son.  That sounds very unlike fathers. 

Again, I agree with that whole scene feeling off.  But outside of that episode and that scene, in earlier episodes it didn't seem as bad to me. As much as I kind of feel that they are done with the Mirror, part of me wonders if he was Mirror Sarek. 

I still think that he might be Mirror Sarek and all of the episodes after they came back are a mirror plot. 

Spock is his son and half Vulcan. I can easily see Sarek being much harder on him. Burnham is not his daughter, she is his ward. He cares about her and sets high standards but after all she's only human. Plus we don't know what happened between them. Younger Spock might not have been able to handle his human side and the two of them got into violent arguments where very hurtful things were said. 

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11 minutes ago, scenario said:

I still think that he might be Mirror Sarek and all of the episodes after they came back are a mirror plot. 

Spock is his son and half Vulcan. I can easily see Sarek being much harder on him. Burnham is not his daughter, she is his ward. He cares about her and sets high standards but after all she's only human. Plus we don't know what happened between them. Younger Spock might not have been able to handle his human side and the two of them got into violent arguments where very hurtful things were said. 

They also made it seem in Lethe that he had high hopes for Burnham, and the Vulcans dismissed his plans, but they would take Spock...so when Spock goes on to spurn him by moving into Starfleet and not take the advantage offered him but not to Burnham...it really irritated him.  I worked to get her this chance, and she doesn't get it, you get her opportunity and you throw it away for something else. 

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15 hours ago, kenman said:

1.  Sarek also revealed he LOVED both Spock and Amanda in TNG when his emotions were bleeding out due to his disease.  I do think Sarek acted out of character even within this show, but I don't think making a comment that love is good is going too gushy and out of character. 

I'm not disputing that Sarek DID love both Spock and Amanda -- though he chose a hell of a way to show it during "Journey to Babel" -- I'm saying that it's not in character for Sarek to say that love is a good thing and Burnham should allow herself to love. 

Sarek was only able to talk about love a century from now, when he had the Vulcan equivalent of Alzheimer's Disease.  A person can change a lot in a hundred years, plus a disease that completely dismantles his emotional controls can show the inner life that he's always kept under wraps before.  But his behavior in "Sarek" is NOT normal behavior for him; that's kinda the point of his having the disease. :)

What Sarek said in this episode isn't gushy FOR A HUMAN.  For a Vulcan, yes, I think it does qualify as gushy.  The TOS-era Sarek was a very buttoned-up guy, and when Spock dies in TWOK, and his body is recovered in TSFS, the closest Sarek gets is "My logic is uncertain where my son is concerned."  His son is DEAD, and he's pleading for his soul to be reunited with his body, and the most emotional he gets is "My logic is uncertain where my son is concerned."

Given THAT background for the character, yes, I think Sarek is gushy -- gushy FOR HIM -- in this episode.

 

15 hours ago, kenman said:

4. I dunno...they would say things like "there are 12 ships in the fleet" 

There are twelve Constitution-class starships in the fleet.  I never got the impression that there were twelve ships total in the fleet, just that a Constitution-class starship was bigger, more powerful, and had more crew, so there were very few of the top-of-the-line ships.

TOS made a distinction several times between a ship and a starship.  In "Bread and Circuses," Claudius tells Kirk that he doesn't have the guts to watch Spock and McCoy die, so he'll give in and bring his crew down to the planet, and Claudius knows this because Merik didn't have the guts.  Merik chimes in and says, "He commands not just a spaceship, Proconsul, but a starship. A very special vessel and crew. I tried for such a command."  So a starship isn't just any old ship.

Similarly, in "This Side of Paradise," Leia says that she's never seen a starship before.  Since she's only been on the planet for four years, she had to have gotten there on a ship, but that ship wasn't a starship; it was just a ship.

There are lots of ships; it's only starships that are few.

Of course, I understand that you were mostly being a devil's advocate in this section. ;)

 

Looking forward to tonight!  Can't wait to see how they wrap it all up!

 

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1 hour ago, Corylea said:

I'm not disputing that Sarek DID love both Spock and Amanda -- though he chose a hell of a way to show it during "Journey to Babel" -- I'm saying that it's not in character for Sarek to say that love is a good thing and Burnham should allow herself to love. 

Sarek was only able to talk about love a century from now, when he had the Vulcan equivalent of Alzheimer's Disease.  A person can change a lot in a hundred years, plus a disease that completely dismantles his emotional controls can show the inner life that he's always kept under wraps before.  But his behavior in "Sarek" is NOT normal behavior for him; that's kinda the point of his having the disease. :)

What Sarek said in this episode isn't gushy FOR A HUMAN.  For a Vulcan, yes, I think it does qualify as gushy.  The TOS-era Sarek was a very buttoned-up guy, and when Spock dies in TWOK, and his body is recovered in TSFS, the closest Sarek gets is "My logic is uncertain where my son is concerned."  His son is DEAD, and he's pleading for his soul to be reunited with his body, and the most emotional he gets is "My logic is uncertain where my son is concerned."

Given THAT background for the character, yes, I think Sarek is gushy -- gushy FOR HIM -- in this episode.

 

There are twelve Constitution-class starships in the fleet.  I never got the impression that there were twelve ships total in the fleet, just that a Constitution-class starship was bigger, more powerful, and had more crew, so there were very few of the top-of-the-line ships.

TOS made a distinction several times between a ship and a starship.  In "Bread and Circuses," Claudius tells Kirk that he doesn't have the guts to watch Spock and McCoy die, so he'll give in and bring his crew down to the planet, and Claudius knows this because Merik didn't have the guts.  Merik chimes in and says, "He commands not just a spaceship, Proconsul, but a starship. A very special vessel and crew. I tried for such a command."  So a starship isn't just any old ship.

Similarly, in "This Side of Paradise," Leia says that she's never seen a starship before.  Since she's only been on the planet for four years, she had to have gotten there on a ship, but that ship wasn't a starship; it was just a ship.

There are lots of ships; it's only starships that are few.

Of course, I understand that you were mostly being a devil's advocate in this section. ;)

 

Looking forward to tonight!  Can't wait to see how they wrap it all up!

 

Could it be that because Sarek was talking to a human that he cared about, he decided to tell her that it was okay for her to love someone. He logically decided that an emotional human might need some reassurance. He would never admit it about himself. 

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1 hour ago, scenario said:

Could it be that because Sarek was talking to a human that he cared about, he decided to tell her that it was okay for her to love someone. He logically decided that an emotional human might need some reassurance. He would never admit it about himself. 

Yes, that's certainly possible.  If so, it would be character development for him, since we've seen him scolding her for having "human emotions" in the past.  It would be nice if it were character development, though there's still the "But Sarek is a PACIFIST" problem. ;)

 

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Just now, Corylea said:

Yes, that's certainly possible.  If so, it would be character development for him, since we've seen him scolding her for having "human emotions" in the past.  It would be nice if it were character development, though there's still the "But Sarek is a PACIFIST" problem. ;)

 

I could see Sarek understood that humans needed emotions. It's uncontrolled emotions, letting emotions control you, public displays of emotions or wallowing in it he doesn't like. In this case, the person she loved just tried to kill her. She's saying that she wants to give up on love. He knows that a human who giving up on love might make them unstable. Him telling her not to give up on love isn't such a stretch. A girl crying because she only got a 97 on a test or because someone called her names is going to get a scolding. A woman who is clearly at a crossroad in her life would logically get a different response. 

I agree completely with the Pacifist problem. They should have had Sarek say something like, "This is unpleasant for both of us but when the other option is the possible extinction of your species logic dictates..."

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