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Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138
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The Edge
Written by Rudy Josephs

(The page numbers come from the 1st printing, paperback edition, 2010)

 

During his first few months at the Academy, Jim Kirk is unsure if a life of Starfleet's rules and regulations is for him.

 

Didja Know?

 

The chapters of all the Starfleet Academy books of this series are numbered to be reminiscent of stardates. For example this books has 28 chapters, so its chapters are numbered as 1.28 through 28.28.

 

The Edge was the second book published in the Starfleet Academy series, but seems to be the first story chronologically, as it tells the first couple weeks of Kirk's time at Starfleet Academy. It also sets up the very beginning of a slightly more than student-teacher relationship between Uhura and Spock.

 

Didja Notice? 

 

Page 1 reveals that, as Kirk's first year at Starfleet Academy begins, it is the year 2255.

 

On page 2, the first year cadets are assembled to run a marathon through the Mojave Desert. The Mojave Desert is a large portion of the southwestern United States, mostly in the state of California, but also encompassing portions of Arizona and Nevada.

 

Page 2 reveals that Kirk was considered the town screw-up as he grew up in Iowa.

 

Page 2 mentions Andorians and Zaranites. Andorians are a well-known alien species in the Star Trek universe, blue-skinned with white hair and antennae on their heads, first seen in the original series episode "Journey to Babel". Zaranites are non-oxygen-breathing aliens first seen in Star Trek: The Motion Picture.

 

On pages 15-16, Kirk is climbing down a cliff, which makes him reminisce about the time he sent a vintage Chevrolet Sting Ray careening down to the bottom of one when he was a just a kid. This is a reference to his stepfather's car which he ditched over a cliff in "Parallels".

 

Page 20 reveals that Kirk's fellow cadet Monica Lynne has promised herself she will graduate from the Academy in three years instead of four, just as he has.

 

On page 22, Thanas mentions the planet Risa to Uhura. Risa is part of the Federation, known as a pleasure planet and for its open sexuality. It first appeared in the ST-TNG episode "Captain's Holiday".

 

Page 36 should still be within the new cadets' first week at the Academy according to what has been set up and continues to unfold, yet the page mistakenly states that Kirk's "first few months at Starfleet Academy had been more than he'd expected".

 

Page 36 mentions that Lynne is on her way to Exochemistry class. Exochemistry is the study of chemical reactions in space.

 

Page 38 reveals that Kirk feels that his stepfather has pretty much burned all his (Kirk's) bridges back to home in Iowa.

 

Page 41 suggests that Dr. McCoy attended medical school at Ole Miss. "Ole Miss" is the nickname of the University of Mississippi.

 

Page 41 reveals that McCoy has aviophobia. Aviophobia is the fear of flying.

 

Page 48 reveals that, with modern medical technology, Dr. McCoy considers it barbaric to slice open the human body. This references back to a scene in the original timeline in Star Trek: The Voyage Home, in which he chastises a 20th Century San Francisco doctor for planning to cut into Chekov's skull due to a head injury he has sustained.

 

On page 54, Uhura is studying for her Interspecies Protocol class and tries to remember details of Glakota and Narudian IV. These do not appear to be worlds previously seen in the original timeline.

 

Page 57 reveals that Spock has just graduated from Starfleet Academy and received a faculty position there.

 

Page 59 reveals that the dean of Starfleet Academy at this time is Admiral Robert Bennett. This is a reference to Harve Bennett, who was the producer and co-writer of the original Star Trek movies II-V, and he played Admiral Robert Bennett in ST V.

 

Page 70 seems to suggest that Spock created the Kobayashi Maru scenario during his senior year at the Academy.

 

During combat training on page 89, the cadets are engaged in Rigelian martial arts. The Rigelians were first mentioned in the original series episode "Journey to Babel".

 

On page 108, Kirk tells McCoy he is meeting Lynne at some place on Marina. This is probably referring to Marina Boulevard in San Francisco.

 

On page 111, Kirk discovers the place Lynne has asked him to meet at is a small restaurant called Suraya Bay. This was also the name of a resort on the planet Risa mentioned in the Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Desert Crossing".

 

Kirk and Lynne drink Risian Rainbows at the Suraya Bay restaurant. Presumably the Risian Rainbow originated on the planet Risa.

 

On page 129, Lynne tells Kirk that her grandfather was serving on the starship Coronado when it disappeared on one of the early deep space expeditions. The Coronado does not appear to have been referenced in any original timeline sources.

 

On page 135, Lynne takes Kirk to the top of Mount Davidson. This is the highest hill in San Francisco.

 

On page 141, Captain Warde is drinking masala chai. This is a hot spiced tea drink which originated in India.

 

On page 152, Uhura is surprised to learn that Spock is half-human. But earlier, on page 57, it's mentioned that she had already heard he was half-human!

 

On pages 155-156, Spock tells Uhura that his given name is unpronounceable to most humans. This is a callback to a similar line of his in the original series episode "This Side of Paradise".

 

On page 183, Kirk remarks that eugenics has caused wars in the past. This is a reference to the Eugenics Wars of Earth that took place in Earth's past as first mentioned in the original series episode "Space Seed".

 

Page 192 mentions the Presidio. This is a former fort and grounds in San Francisco first established in 1776 by the Spanish, then used by the Mexicans, followed by the United States. Since 1994 it has been a U.S. National Park.

 

Page 212 reveals that Starfleet uses the same 4F designation for applicants who had a medical condition that made them unfit for duty as was used by the United States Armed Forces in earlier centuries. 

 

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