Everything I needed to learn about life, I learned from watching Star Trek
Kirk and Spock, from Devil In The Dark

My Personal Top Ten Reasons Why Spock Is The Most Fascinating Vulcan

by Laura Goodwin

It's been decades since the first episode of Star Trek aired, and as time and Trek have rolled on, the overwhelming impact that Spock had on popular culture hasn't lessened, it's only been diffused somewhat as time rolls on, and as more Vulcan characters have been introduced. We have met many Vulcans since Spock, and they each have their charms and their fans, but Spock to me is still the Bull Moose King of them all for many reasons.

We knew nothing about Vulcans until we met Spock. We learned about Vulcans from Spock. Spock revealed facts about himself and his people by slow degrees, and - at the time that this process was first happening - the process of learning about Spock, and Vulcans, was as perfectly thrilling as a perfect strip-tease.

[Historical NOTE: Modern audiences are completely inured to the sight of women "dancers" casually showing their genitalia immediately and could *not* possibly understand, so I'll explain - A strip-tease is an ancient form of erotic entertainment, once enjoyed by Jurassic audiences, in which the "artist" would playfully and slowly undress, usually to musical accompaniment. The object was to "tease" the audience with the implied promise of impending nudity, but to delay that fulfillment until the last possible second, when at the climax, the audience would be rewarded with a momentary glimpse of nakedness. This was once considered an extremely sexy and naughty thing to do and enjoy, just like piercing your face used to be considered an extremely weird thing to do and enjoy.]

Everything we learned about Vulcans, we learned from Spock, and that is the pure and simple truth. The recent introduction of a TOS prequel and a supposedly pre-Spock Vulcan doesn't change OUR history as an audience.

Spock was revealed to be not only Vulcan, but an unusual Vulcan. It was revealed that he had a human mother, specifically an Earth woman named Amanda, whom we met in Journey to Babel. We saw that his mixed ancestry caused him problems, especially in Amok Time, where at one point a frustrated clan Matriarch named T'Pau asked Spock to make up his mind and decide once and for all if he was human, or Vulcan.

Spock was revealed in both Journey to Babel and in Amok time to have a distinguished lineage. He was related to T'Pau, the most famous living Vulcan of his age. His father, Sarek, was the highly influential Vulcan ambassador to the United Federation Of Planets. Spock was in effect, practically royalty.

Spock ultimately became an ambassador himself, but in his youth he was in fact an unofficial Vulcan ambassador everywhere he went, and he seemed to realize that, and to take his responsibility to the Vulcan people seriously. He always strove to conduct himself like a gentlemen and to represent the Vulcans, and Starfleet, with dignity.

That was not an easy thing for him to do. He was surrounded by people who didn't understand and appreciate him very well. On a couple of occasions he was the target of outright racial hostility. On rare occasions he allowed himself the luxury of verbally deploring the bad behavior of the humans around him.

Still, it is obvious that Spock loves humans, and he was loved right back by them - and for good reason. Spock was not only Captain Kirk's most adored companion, but several of his shipmates learned to love him. Anyone who came to know Spock well eventually learned to love him.

We the audience did and do love him. At the time Star Trek was new, the Spock-love mania was a fan phenomenon of great significance. The fact that Spock is still many people's favorite Vulcan after all these decades demands acknowledgment. Even though we have many other Vulcan characters to choose from now, Spock still is at the top of almost every Trekkie's favorite Vulcan list. He tops many favorite Trek character lists. He also is at the top of the the list of most significant pop culture phenomena, especially when you consider that it is virtually impossible to avoid the mention of his name, even today. Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock get mentioned in movies, songs, articles and conversations all over the world more than any other Trek characters by far.

There are good reasons for this. Spock is a fascinating character of rich depths.

Here are my personal top ten reasons why, to me, Spock is and always will be not only the most fascinating Vulcan, but also one of the most interesting fictional heroes of any category, ever:

Never Underestimate Him...
Or Yourself!

Also See the companion piece...
The EnterpriseKirk "Ten Reasons" List

All site contents Copyright L. Goodwin 1990 - 2006

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