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Everything is wrong with the plot of Star Trek: Into Darkness

Before I talk about Fanime, I need to vent about Star Trek: Into Darkness. spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers spoilers


I’m not convinced any writers were solicited for this movie. The plot isn’t just terrible, it’s irredeemable.

  • Enterprise hiding from hunter-gatherer aliens underwater instead of in orbit. [contributed by George Henry]
  • Volcano threatens entire species instead of just the population of one island
  • Secret dangerous weapons facility is under a major city, instead of middle of nowhere.
  • Pike sets up Kirk to become captain of the Enterprise in a head-shakingly transparent bit of “plot”. Also, guarantees his own death. Is it that hard to think of a different plot device than the first movie?
  • Starfleet protocol in reaction to terrorist attack is to gather everyone important in one undefended room
  • Khan has a ring that can blow up city blocks, but can’t do better than an underpowered rocket helicopter to attack starfleet high command
  • Khan has a transporter that can take him to Kronos, but can’t just transport into starfleet building and kill everyone hand-to-hand (as surely his desire for vengeance demands).
  • Zero defenses around starfleet high command
  • Future rocket helicopter machine gun is weaker than modern helicopter machine gun
  • Superhuman Khan fires into room full of people, only kills one person we know anything about
  • Future medical facilities can’t save a man who’s merely been shot
  • No one bothers transporting the victims out of the fire zone
  • Khan transports to Kronos for no reason other than to serve the plot
  • There’s an uninhabited area of Kronos that everyone apparently knows is a good hideout except for Klingons
  • No one seems to think Khan is setting them up to have the special torpedoes used on him, even though he designed them
  • There are exactly enough special torpedoes to fit Khan’s comrades, or exactly those torpedoes are given to the Enterprise, which also has exactly that number of torpedo tubes, and loads only those torpedoes and none other. If admiral Marcus thinks the torpedoes are real, surely 1-2 are enough to start a war and he should hold the rest in reserve. If he knows their contents, then what exactly is his plan?
  • Spock hides identity of Carol from Kirk, entirely out of character, especially given how suspicious she’s acting, and how she’s possibly an enemy agent.
  • Apparent sabotage of warp drive doesn’t arise suspicions, nor makes Spock mention Carol as a possible enemy agent
  • There are no defenses or sensors around Kronos
  • Patrol of Klingons finds and intercepts tiny shuttle in five minutes, even though no one finds and intercepts the Enterprise in ?days?
  • Several warbirds and dozens of well-trained (check out the rappelling!) Klingons fight Khan. Not one of them bothers to actually fire in his direction
  • Kirk is able to chat with Scotty in real time on a cell phone in a bar, but has to send a message to Starfleet and wait for a response that doesn’t come.
  • ‘Planetoid’ conveniently suitable to human life
  • Transporter can’t distinguish between missile and McCoy. Also, Carol doesn’t chop off McCoy’s hand to save him
  • Super secret construction base near Jupiter has no security against detection, espionage or intrusion
  • Kronos is apparently 5 minutes from Earth at warp speed
  • Admiral Marcus intercepts Enterprise at warp speed, but only when they’re within sight of Earth, presumably 99.9% of the way home.
  • Two Starfleet spaceships battle in Earth orbit (apparently – since the Enterprise falls into Earth soon after). Starfleet doesn’t react in any way. [contributed by George Henry]
  • Kirk broadcasts Marcus’s message to the crew, but doesn’t relay it to Starfleet
  • Giant debris field between Enterprise and Marcus’s ship is completely unrealistic in the context of physics (though, I suppose acceptable in Star Trek physics).
  • McCoy stands within physical striking distance of the superhuman who is surely resistant to stun
  • Khan doesn’t figure out Spock’s trick
  • Khan is basically defeated in one go
  • Gravity goes wonky in the Enterprise for no reason other than to set up shots of wonky gravity
  • Enterprise is falling to Earth in a poor attempt to build dramatic tension. Saved predictably with technobabble. That’s normal for a Star Trek episode, but weak for a movie.
  • Okay, I get it, enough with the role reversal already. It’s not nearly as cute or meaningful as you think.
  • Kirk is obviously going to be saved by superman blood, making his sacrifice emotionally meaningless
  • There are no defenses around Earth against incoming hostile vessels, either at long range or when ships are about to crash into cities
  • Read that again: Neither Kronos nor Earth have any defenses, even though they are only 5 minutes away from one another at warp!
  • Khan knows his crew is alive, but instead of trying to save them, decides to kill himself in a possibly-suicidal run on Starfleet. Shouldn’t he at least be trying to get vengeance against Spock?
  • Spock goes alone against Khan instead of 1) taking a large number of people 2) transporting them in a dragnet around Khan 3) alerting local law enforcement
  • Spock doesn’t bother shooting Khan with stun when he has a clear shot (Khan may be resistant, but it obviously slows him down)
  • The blood of the other 72 supermen is apparently just not good enough to save Kirk
  • Khan apparently needs to be alive for a vial of blood to be drawn from him

That’s all that comes immediately to mind. Feel free to contribute your own points of anguish. It’s especially upsetting when the first movie was quite good.

Note that these are just the problems with the plot. The movie also had serious issues with lack of conflict, tension, and not establishing a decent antagonist (despite having Khan!).

Or perhaps the reboot has reversed the odd/even quality polarity.


PS: thanks to L, A and E who watched the movie with me and joined in on the kvetching about it afterward.

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