Should Picard have been promoted?

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Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby FaxModem1 » 2017-04-11 05:57pm

Throughout all seven seasons, and all four movies, Picard retains the rank of Captain. The reasoning behind this is the advice Kirk gave him in Generations, wherein he told him not to change, be transferred, promoted, as it might prevent him from making a difference. Should Picard not have listened, and have been made an admiral instead? In-universe, Picard has a very distinguished career and would be able to make more of a difference as an admiral, with more power under his belt. Additionally, he would still be able to have the Enterprise or another ship under his command.

Out of universe, we could have additional story-telling opportunities, with Picard's rank and additional responsibilities and power affecting things over the years, along with making Riker a Captain. Showing that they are progressing, and that they are not stuck in the status quo.

Alternatively, Picard could have retired from Starfleet, and become a full-time ambassador. Letting us see him embracing that part of his life. Would that be a good avenue to explore as a character, or would it limit story opportunities? Would it fit his character, as he wouldn't be able to do exploration, military, or science stories?

What do you think?
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Crazedwraith » 2017-04-11 06:31pm

Out-of-Universe, I think Picard's role should have changed have Best Of Both Worlds. Though I doubt he could have been promoted at that Stage. Perhaps he could have taken have a seaosn of half a season to recover and return in another role.

BoBWs is partially about Riker becoming fully capable and self-aware as a Captain. This is lost when everyone basically returns to their old roles after 'Family'

Whether he should have been an Admiral specifically is another matter. That greater power of an Admiral does open up possibilities but that additional power actually closes off some story telling options because it's much harder to keep the level of peril up if your main characters have the authority to call up masses of ships to take care of it. It's doable but the kind of story TNG was good at doesn't require more ships or really benefit from them. Having another ship keeping pace with Enterprise doesn't improve (or detract from tbf) a 'data learns x about humanity episode'

Added to that there's the added cost to the show of creating new fleet establishing shots and the cast of the senior crew of the ships would needed as well.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby PREDATOR490 » 2017-04-11 06:49pm

Out of universe - Would not work.

Promoting Picard would actually become detrimental rather than a benefit. Picard either becomes a guest star on TNG much like any other Admiral that was shown throughout the series or the E-D crew become the guest stars in a 'Picard' show. Having more power and responsibilities would do little unless the series took a radical shift in focus to make that power and responsibilities worth using.

Admiral Picard commanding the E-D repeatedly would undercut any benefit from Riker becoming a captain and the situations would have to escalate to justify having an Admiral being put in play.
The only benefit from becoming an Admiral from a story perspective is allowing a wider avenue to explore the Federation and it's interactions with the galaxy. This basically screams lots of political drama / intrigue which I do not see TNG pulling off with the mindset it was set on.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Q99 » 2017-04-11 10:22pm

There does seem to be an unstated 'Captain of the Flagship is above any other captain' thing going on too. We see him direct fleet actions on occasion.

Which makes Riker's insistence on the Enterprise make a *bit* more sense, he wants to not just have the big chair, but the top big chair.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2017-04-11 10:34pm

Q99 wrote:There does seem to be an unstated 'Captain of the Flagship is above any other captain' thing going on too. We see him direct fleet actions on occasion.

Which makes Riker's insistence on the Enterprise make a *bit* more sense, he wants to not just have the big chair, but the top big chair.


I think it's less "Captain of the Flagship" and more seniority/reputation/respect explaining the various "E-D commands a fleet" situation: Picard had been a Captain for some time prior to taking over the E-D and presumably had a very impressive record to get the spot anyway, which Riker wouldn't have if he assumed command - he has had an impressive career to be sure, "Pegasus" establishes that Riker arrived on the E-D as First Officer only six years after graduating from the Academy.

Though there is that regulation brought up in Voyager's "Equinox" that in combat situations, command falls to the vessel with tactical superiority - which means the E-D would have had command in most or all of those situations anyway. Incidentally, that regulation, though it hadn't been thought of by the writrs, may well explain why Sisko commands the fleet at Bajor and Chin'toka, despite numerous Galaxy class ships being present.

Riker holding out for the Enterprise is reasonable enough - it's a prestigious command that he's very attached to, but I don't think it's a desire for the unofficial top big chair thing.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby FedRebel » 2017-04-12 12:48am

FaxModem1 wrote:Throughout all seven seasons, and all four movies, Picard retains the rank of Captain. The reasoning behind this is the advice Kirk gave him in Generations, wherein he told him not to change, be transferred, promoted, as it might prevent him from making a difference. Should Picard not have listened, and have been made an admiral instead?


At the minimum Picard should've held the rank of 'Fleet Captain' if not Commodore/Rear Admiral Lower Half.

The E-D was 'the' flagship of the fleet, whatever sector it was deployed...sector command defaulted to it. While arguably Picard has grade seniority, given his portfolio of responsibilities as commander of the fleet's flag...appropriate rank should have been dispensated.


In-universe, Picard has a very distinguished career and would be able to make more of a difference as an admiral, with more power under his belt. Additionally, he would still be able to have the Enterprise or another ship under his command.


Throughout TNG Picard had the responsibility and burden of a Commodore already, he just lacked the pips

Out of universe, we could have additional story-telling opportunities, with Picard's rank and additional responsibilities and power affecting things over the years, along with making Riker a Captain. Showing that they are progressing, and that they are not stuck in the status quo.


Sisko is better for that, for some reason his rank was frozen at Captain despite acting effectively as "Supreme Allied Commander" during the Dominion War

Showing his rank/burden progression along with DS9's increasing strategic importance could've been a good direction to tread.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Joun_Lord » 2017-04-12 03:25am

Eternal_Freedom wrote:Though there is that regulation brought up in Voyager's "Equinox" that in combat situations, command falls to the vessel with tactical superiority - which means the E-D would have had command in most or all of those situations anyway. Incidentally, that regulation, though it hadn't been thought of by the writrs, may well explain why Sisko commands the fleet at Bajor and Chin'toka, despite numerous Galaxy class ships being present.


Well any ship Ben Sisko is on is going to have tactical superiority. He could be in a rowboat with some bottle rockets attached and he'd still have command.

Anyway.....

I think John Luck Pickerd should have been promoted but Picard seems like one of those types that would fight tooth and nail to avoid getting promoted to Admiral. He liked being a Starship Captain and commanding a flotilla or fleet while couch surfing on someone else's ship he have probably hated more then Borg Children all with the face of his father. Being promoted from Captain means he cannot be in the big chair anymore.

Really the person who should have been promoted should have been Riker. Riker spent too long as Number 1 taking a Number 2 on his career. He languished like a fast food assistant manager whose never going to get promoted but is too afraid to leave for better opportunities. Riker had proven time and again he was ready to be a Captain but never did so.

I think around when Thomas Riker showed up he should have left to go become a Captain in his own right, leaving Thomas to join the crew and someone like Data or Worf to become Commander. Out of universe could have even left open the possibility of a new series after TNG focusing on Will's commanding his own ship, hell give him Voyager. Imagine how much different, possibly better, Voyager would be with Riker in command instead of Jonathan Archer's long lost descendant.

Anyway it goes poor Riker ain't getting the Enterprise. The only reason why he even got it in some alt timelines is because Picard died or went insane. As long as Picard is alive and relatively sane he is holding onto the Enterprise like Neelix with his kitchen, literally have to pry them out to remove them.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-12 08:38am

In-universe certainly and most official material suggests that at some point prior the Hobus Incident (or at least pretty soon after it) Picard either retires or finally accepts a promotion and is replaced by Data as the Captain of the Enterprise (NCC-1701-E).

Out of universe it kind of breaks the TNG dynamic and most of the movies when out of their way to include Worf in the action even after he joined the DS9 cast so I don't see them moving Picard away from the big chair.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Tribble » 2017-04-15 11:43am

In universe I wouldn't be surprised if Starfleet deliberately kept Picard at his rank since

A) it was pretty obvious he'd didn't want a promotion anyways
B) like Kirk, he's the kind of person you'd prefer having at the front line handling crises rather than sitting behind a desk somewhere and
C) Picard has a (usually justifiable) history of disobeying orders and going against the Admiralty when he felt it necessary; for all his accomplishments they probably didn't view him as being "one of them" and didn't want him joining the club where he might cause even more of a ruckus. Better to keep him on the frontier as their "celebrity captain," where he would be out of their hair most of the time.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby FaxModem1 » 2017-04-15 02:45pm

Tribble wrote:In universe I wouldn't be surprised if Starfleet deliberately kept Picard at his rank since

A) it was pretty obvious he'd didn't want a promotion anyways
B) like Kirk, he's the kind of person you'd prefer having at the front line handling crises rather than sitting behind a desk somewhere and
C) Picard has a (usually justifiable) history of disobeying orders and going against the Admiralty when he felt it necessary; for all his accomplishments they probably didn't view him as being "one of them" and didn't want him joining the club where he might cause even more of a ruckus. Better to keep him on the frontier as their "celebrity captain," where he would be out of their hair most of the time.


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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-15 04:24pm

Honestly Picard isn't categorically against black ops, what he is against is sacrificing the federation values for an easy way out of a problem. Hell Starfleet Command might even want someone like Picard to ask if they've exhausted all possible (realistic) alternatives before attempting legally and morally questionble methods or did we go for those methods because it was the easy way out.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Patroklos » 2017-04-15 04:45pm

Something to remember about all of these perpetual captains is that they essentially make themselves bottlenecks, stunting the careers and growth of fellow officers. There are only so many ships, and if commanding one is a requirement for promotion to Admiral Picard was essentially choking the supply of eligible and tested candidates for Starfleet's senior leadership spots.

Historically real world navies like the USN and RN had problems with this, promoting to vacancy rather than via a regular billet rotation. Admirals would hang on at that grade for thirty years until they died, causing whole generations of officers to be locked out of leadership positions with obvious impacts to innovation and vitality. Worse yet there would be 30 year leuitenants who blocked new blood from even joining. This is part of the reason we see massive forced retirements and setting asides at the beginning of both world wars.

The current solution to this is the up or out plus high year tenure. You either promote or you are forced out in aset number of years. This has problems too but it's better than a stagnant officer corps.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby FaxModem1 » 2017-04-15 04:52pm

Lord Revan wrote:Honestly Picard isn't categorically against black ops, what he is against is sacrificing the federation values for an easy way out of a problem. Hell Starfleet Command might even want someone like Picard to ask if they've exhausted all possible (realistic) alternatives before attempting legally and morally questionble methods or did we go for those methods because it was the easy way out.


True, he did go with Crusher and Worf on a raid against the Cardassians on orders from Starfleet Intelligence.

But I could see him being one of the people to stop dead Admiral Leyton's coup, for example.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Crazedwraith » 2017-04-15 04:59pm

Patroklos wrote:Something to remember about all of these perpetual captains is that they essentially make themselves bottlenecks, stunting the careers and growth of fellow officers.


Would the idea that in theory the Federation is and Starfleet is constantly growing as new members joining and colonies are colonised and so on have an impact on this? More ships and therefore more vacancies constantly being created.

And that Starfleet is officer heavy compared to real navies. (Noncomms being extremely few and far between) so there are a lot more billets per ship for Ensigns and LTs at least.

I wonder if position hogging is much a problem beyond main cast members.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Crazedwraith » 2017-04-15 05:00pm

FaxModem1 wrote:But I could see him being one of the people to stop dead Admiral Leyton's coup, for example.


Well Leyton wouldn't want him on hand. But any sane admiral might want to in that case.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Q99 » 2017-04-15 05:21pm

Patroklos wrote:Something to remember about all of these perpetual captains is that they essentially make themselves bottlenecks, stunting the careers and growth of fellow officers. There are only so many ships, and if commanding one is a requirement for promotion to Admiral Picard was essentially choking the supply of eligible and tested candidates for Starfleet's senior leadership spots.


Yes, really. Pretty much the entire bridge crew of the E-D should've been captains, even Troi and Crusher were qualified by the end and had some experience.

Riker should've have his own ship after season 3, training up his own XO (Shelby, almost certainly) and so on.

By the time of Nemesis, Riker and Data should've been admirals, let alone Picard.

And despite never properly getting a higher rank (due to specific incidents, not just SF command freeze), Worf was acting like a commander-verging-on-captain, given command of the Defiant with regularity. Oddly unique among such a prestigious crew of talented individuals. And of course switched to a political job at the end.

DS9 on the whole had less of a problem with this, being a station post and all, and several logically not even at issue for this. Kira's a Bajoran major and the DS9 post is probably the most strategic job in their military, there's not much 'up' to put her to except command of the station... which she gets. Jadzia died, Ezri's still relatively fresh,

Voyager, well, of course they couldn't. Hm, I suppose given the mission length the whole Maquis thing will be largely brushed aside. If they do, Chakotay could get a command if he wants to, Tuvok too, I could see Paris getting a small ship. Can't recall Torres leading much in the way of missions but raw experience could get her a post similar to Paris. Seven's situation is just unusual, I could certainly see her getting a Data-esque XO slot after a few years at the academy polishing off her skillset, and getting a command soon after.

If they don't brush aside the maquis stuff, well, pretty much just Tuvok and Paris then. Having your command crew be mostly former criminals does limit promotion potential.

Oh, hah, and really the Doctor should be considered, if Starfleet can get over hologram prejudice ^^

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-15 05:36pm

How many of these "stuck in the same rank and position" officers are there however I mean only captains that remained so was Picard and possibly Kirk (technically Kirk was the official CO of the NCC-1701 only in ST1 of the movies and even then he replaced the previous CO due to his ego). Janeway got promoted to Vice Admiral IIRC and Archer retired from starfleet as "Admiral" even in Prime-timeline IIRC. Sisko is a special case as he's essentially MIA.

It could be that Enterprise is a special case in the fleet and other ships have normal replacement rates for officers.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Q99 » 2017-04-16 04:35am

Sisko also only got promoted to Captain during the show, so despite the fact he's leading fleet battles and having a lot of clout, I wouldn't expect him to get bomped up again so soon.

The Enterprise may be a special case, but still, it's a special case locking down multiple top captain candidates.

Once they get to post-series movies, they should just bite the bullet and give the crew multiple ships!

Worf and Defiant. Sulu and Excelsior. Huh... it's always the tactical officer and never the first officer that gets a ship, isn't it?

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Crazedwraith » 2017-04-16 05:34am

Q99 wrote:The Enterprise may be a special case, but still, it's a special case locking down multiple top captain candidates.


The only one who's career is being held up by Picard is Picard. I don't think Officers tend to get promoted up and out on the same vessel. There's no reason Riker couldn't have gone to the Captaincy of the Melboure or Data (barring android prejudice) couldn't have become the XO of the Hood or any other ship. Likewise Worf/Geordi etc.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Q99 » 2017-04-16 06:42am

Crazedwraith wrote:The only one who's career is being held up by Picard is Picard. I don't think Officers tend to get promoted up and out on the same vessel. There's no reason Riker couldn't have gone to the Captaincy of the Melboure or Data (barring android prejudice) couldn't have become the XO of the Hood or any other ship. Likewise Worf/Geordi etc.


True. It could be argued to be a ship's culture thing, but still, Starfleet would be better off with more rotation.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-16 06:54am

Q99 wrote:Sisko also only got promoted to Captain during the show, so despite the fact he's leading fleet battles and having a lot of clout, I wouldn't expect him to get bomped up again so soon.

The Enterprise may be a special case, but still, it's a special case locking down multiple top captain candidates.

Once they get to post-series movies, they should just bite the bullet and give the crew multiple ships!

Worf and Defiant. Sulu and Excelsior. Huh... it's always the tactical officer and never the first officer that gets a ship, isn't it?

Technically speaking the Defiant was Sisko's ship not Worf's, also Sulu wasn't the first member of the orginal series crew to get his own command, it was Spock, who was the official CO of the Big-E during Wrath of Khan, Kirk was just the flag officer observing the training cruise and only reason he was "given" command was his friendship with Spock, it was the First Officer on the orginal series crew who got his own command first.

Also I'm pretty sure Sulu was just the Helmsman and Chekov was the Tactical/security officer.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Captain Seafort » 2017-04-16 07:03am

Lord Revan wrote:Technically speaking the Defiant was Sisko's ship not Worf's


Nonetheless, Worf took command of the ship on several occasions, most notably First Contact and Rules of Engagement.

Also I'm pretty sure Sulu was just the Helmsman and Chekov was the Tactical/security officer.


Indeed, but technically Chekov also got his first command before Sulu. Admittedly it was only as acting CO, and his only action relating to said command was to shoot lumps off it.
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-16 08:03am

Captain Seafort wrote:
Also I'm pretty sure Sulu was just the Helmsman and Chekov was the Tactical/security officer.


Indeed, but technically Chekov also got his first command before Sulu. Admittedly it was only as acting CO, and his only action relating to said command was to shoot lumps off it.

Are you referring to the Reliant?
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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Q99 » 2017-04-16 08:09am

Lord Revan wrote:Technically speaking the Defiant was Sisko's ship not Worf's,


True, but Worf got to fly it almost as often.

Also I'm pretty sure Sulu was just the Helmsman and Chekov was the Tactical/security officer.


Ah yes, you're right.

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Re: Should Picard have been promoted?

Postby Lord Revan » 2017-04-16 08:24am

Yes I know Worf often commanded the Defiant on missions, my point was that Sisko was still the official CO and Worf was still subject to Sisko authority in a way normal ship CO isn't. I mean Dr. Crusher didn't become the official CO of the Big-E when she took command in Descent, she was still just the CMO.

That's what I meant by technically speaking, in the Defiant duty rosters it would still read "commanding officer:Captain Benjamin Sisko" regardless who actually had operative command at that point.
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