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Quick Note

Just want to say that I believe Mariner and such are projects probably best handled via the wiki. But I am still going to put a call out on the List for episode ideas and such. Zahir 20:21, 7 July 2006 (PDT)

Okay, a few thoughts and ideas.

Captain & Crew

Captain of the Mariner: This is a character we have yet to cast. I have suggested this be a person who saw the potential of our odd mission specialists--Prof. Gideon, Shyanna and Magnus--and got them to sign up. I would make two further suggestions. One is that he be indeed a "he." Why? Because the skipper of the Vanguard is a "she." No other reason. Variety and all that. The other suggestion I'd like to make is that his initials be either JC or JK. Why? Tradition! Jim Kirk, John Koenig, John Crichton, John Carter, John Sheridan, etc. Come to think of it, that is a whole lot of Johns. INSERT YOUR PROSTITUTION JOKE-OF-CHOICE HERE.

There was a young man from Nantucket... BoArthur

We will need some other crewmembers. At a bare minimum methinks we'll need the following officers and some staff for each:

  1. Chief Engineering Officer
  2. Chief Astrogation Officer
  3. Chief Medical Officer
  4. Chief Security Officer

One of the above might easily be first officer. And we might want one more mission specialist who isn't quite such a weirdo. Zahir 22:07, 30 January 2006 (PST)

My recommendations:
  • Joaquin Klausfelder (A descendent of the Solms-Braunfels of Tejas?), Captain. (Early-Mid 40's, fit, typical sex-symbol). Klausfelder has been seen as somewhat of a loose cannon by the brass of Starmada, who assigned him to this expedition as a way to "black-hole" him, or conveniently cause him to disappear from "public" view, if only temporarily. Klausfelder would've been an admiral at this point in his career, if he had not been known for infracting the rules, the which infractions have caused him to be demoted several times in his career.
  • Cora Zovanik, an Erdekan, Chief Engineering Officer
  • Han Dian Ning, (Danning), Chief Astrogation Officer, FuTaiNan
  • Sarukai, Sagittarian, Chief Security Officer
  • Stavros Thessaloniki, Nea Illenicia, Chief Medical Officer
  • Vulia, Human (by all accounts), very difficult to locate except for when the ship is in duress, when she always appears as if by magic. Mission Specialist. Vulia is very reserved. Her psychologic profile reveals her to be slightly autistic. This autism causes her to be almost robotic, showing no feeling. She is very easy to get along with, all the same, and quickly earns the respect of her co-workers. She has a brilliant scientific mind, but tends to babble on about technology.
  • Tophora Stylm XI A large slug- or worm-like being from the ocean-planet Calish. A member of the local royalty, Tophora Stylm XI is a Mission Specialist. It is discovered in the first season that he was actually exiled, as he was an embarassment to the world-government on Calish. (/[email protected]'lIS/). Tophora Stylm is the size of an average human, but must be conveyed around the ship in an aquarium.

BoArthur 22:21, 30 January 2006 (PST)

This sounds almost like Andromeda. --Sikulu 01:32, 31 January 2006 (PST)

Hmmmm. It does, just a little. Mostly in the very heroic captain, the alien security officer and the mysterious female (although her appearance and disappearance remind me more of Galen from Crusade). I am such a geek. Vulia, one presumes, is a civilian mission specialist? Zahir 04:06, 31 January 2006 (PST)
I don't know, Trance Gemini was very mysterious. Don't worry, I'm somewhat of a geek myself (as my co-students keep reminding me). --Sikulu 05:14, 31 January 2006 (PST)
Yeah, but as I recall she didn't vanish very often. But then, I stopped watching the show after awhile. Been spoiled by B5, Crusade and Firefly and Farscape as well as Blake's 7 and the new Battlestar Galactica. Zahir 05:26, 31 January 2006 (PST)
Battlestar Galactica rocks (but it can get weird at times though). Also, Stargate-SG1 and Stargate-Atlantis rock. --Sikulu 05:40, 31 January 2006 (PST)
Mariner, since Zahir suggested it struck me as an amalgamation of Farscape, Andromeda and any number of others, both those you mentioned and others like Red Dwarf, although Mariner will NOT be Camp! And yes, Vulia is one of the "mission specialists" BoArthur 14:59, 31 January 2006 (PST)

As far the proposed characters go, my only concern is a viable number of characters. One of the banes of really interesting series is sometimes they get too many regulars. Buffy suffered from this badly for several seasons, as did most TREKs. A true ensemble series--like West Wing or ER--works best in a non-fantastic setting, imo, simply because so much time must end up devoted to exposition and set-up. So far the only space opera show to work with very many characters has been Battlestar Galactica and one reason for that was they deliberately made the Colonies as Earth-like in terms of culture as possible.

Another concern is that there are essentially two cluster of regulars--the Starmada and the Mission Specialists. I suspect that most episodes will tend to focus on one or the other.

Tophora Stylm XI is a little obviously Rygel-like to me. I'm wondering why a member of the royal family is on this ship and what his specialty is? But I rather like the idea of his being in a tank, someone whose interaction with the rest of the crew is severely limited. Besides, that helps make him truly A-L-I-E-N.

I'm a little concerned about Vulia being a bit too much like Shyanna. I've described Shyanna's personality, can you do the same for Vulia so it'll be easier to see what kind of role she fits in?

One more concern--I would suggest that Professor Gideon be the more-or-less official "Leader" of the Mission Specialists, in effect Captain Klausfelder's opposite and to some extent equal. With this in mind, perhaps you can offer more details of the Captain's personality which must serve as a complement to Gideon's own? Zahir 08:17, 1 February 2006 (PST)

I'd expect Tophora Stylm XI to be a refugee, a minor royal that's fallen out of favour, or a diplomat. --Sikulu 08:20, 1 February 2006 (PST)

I like the notion of a diplomat, especially if perhaps he's actually very good at his/her job and tends to become the peacemaker between factions on board. Of course for that to work, I think the tension between the two groups needs to be fairly high. For example, perhaps the Sagitarrans had an ancient feud with the Goracii (Professor Gideon's people) and Sarukaii really doesn't trust Gideon at all. Zahir 18:42, 1 February 2006 (PST)
I've added some information. Please tell me if you think it's sufficient. I saw this ship actually like an explorer ship that didn't have comings-and-goings from the Starmada or other contact points outside of the Antilles Sector aside from once or twice a season. The rest, I expected would be interactions between the cast members. I could see whole episodes relating to the interactions between Gideon and Klausfelder. There would be a MacGuffin to drive the plot forward and give them reason to interact of course. I see Mariner as almost being "Red Dwarf"ish.
My first reaction was "Only two light years? Most stars are five light years apart!" But then I saw that such a detail actually fits in very well with what you were describing--lots and lots of bottle episodes (those that take place only aboard ship). And I totally agree. One thing I wanted to develop was the notion that the ship itself contains a fair number of mysteries. Who knows what might have gotten left behind in some forgotten crany? Or by whom, eh? Zahir 18:42, 1 February 2006 (PST)
I also thought that this would be something like the Magellanic Clouds, very dense with stars; so that 2 light years would be sufficient. We can adjust it...But I also think there will be bottle episodes. I think, also, that Mariner was meant to be a "slow-boat" and was built on older science of the Starmada. I think that the idea of giving the colonists time to get to know one another was a relatively Good Thing especially when they were seeded onto a planet and had room to spread out...

Crew Pics?

Just wanted to share--my image of Shyanna is rather a cross between Chiana of Farscape and Trance Gemini of Andromeda. Just as I tend to thing of Professor Gideon as a kinda/sorta a cross between Lazarus on Galaxy Quest and Londo Mollari of Babylon 5. Hence: An interesting image, don't you think? Zahir 19:01, 14 February 2006 (PST)

If you can find pictures of these folks with their faces going roughly the same direction, I'm keen to try to mush them together... ;) Of course, I'm sure you are, too... BoArthur 19:06, 14 February 2006 (PST)
Bo, if you wanna try and do that, go for it. I look forward to actually seeing what you come up with. The only thing--Gideon's crest should be red and green, like parrot. Hee hee hee. Zahir 19:43, 14 February 2006 (PST)
Are there any specific points of each eprson that you would like to see incorporated into the final "picture"? BoArthur 12:15, 12 June 2006 (PDT)
I don't think so. I do want to emphasize Shyanna's sensuality and Professor Gideon's dignity. But that is pretty much it. Thanks! Zahir 15:13, 12 June 2006 (PDT)

The Premiere

Just a thought, but I rather liked the idea of Commodore Radu Normandie getting court martialed, but then managing to escape. No one realizes at first that he has escaped aboard the Mariner which is huge enough he's been able to hide. Once they do figure it out, the Vanguard is sent to bring him back. Just a nutshell of an idea. What do you think? Zahir 22:07, 30 January 2006 (PST)

Would we somehow be able to work it in with the Season 3 Ender from SV2245? (The Countdown: Shyanna shows up, working with the prototype android Magnus on what seems to be a plan which would destroy both the Zeniaks and the Zmorites. Unfortunately, the plan would also call for wiping out a heavily-populated system of the Condominium via a striggered nova. They go to Captain Spitzer in hopes of stopping this atrocity, which focusses on the starship Invincible, whose captain was once the first officer of Commodore Radu Normandie. It seems the Invincible was in direct contact with the Assessors six months ago...)
Would it be possible to incorporate your idea into the Season 4 Opener for SV2245 and make it a two-hour thing with the first episode of Mariner? BoArthur 22:23, 30 January 2006 (PST)
Hey, what you see above is ALL I HAVE GOT. Make of it what you/me/we will. Zahir 22:32, 30 January 2006 (PST)
*Waves magic wand* You're a pumpkin!  ;)
But seriously, I think that the two mesh quite, quite well. The supernova can be averted in the first 15 minutes of the show, but important information will surface leading to the court-martialling of Normandie. We can then stretch his sojourn on Mariner as long as the creator, (Zahir) deems fit. :)
We could also have the Supernova averted at the last 30 minutes, and the show culminating in Normandie escaping after conviction, and we see him hiding among the depths of Mariner... (I like the latter better than the former, actually) BoArthur
I prefer the latter idea myself. Zahir 04:06, 31 January 2006 (PST)


When last we left off we agreed the Monfareen were going to fill the archetype of "religious zealots" in terms of antagonists.

But there would also be a kind of Supe-Corporation Antagonists, hopefully of more than one species. Any suggestions along those lines? Zahir 15:07, 9 June 2006 (PDT)

Well...let me think. The Gromashi could live their lives around the creation of interstellar space-stations built for trade. but at great cost to those for whom it is built. Their complex legal system has ensnared more than a few races for the better part of a millenia, and they look to move further in their motions, creating a legal hegemony of the entire cluster. BoArthur 18:48, 9 June 2006 (PDT)-
Sounds like an interesting idea. Two things. (1) Since we already have a race beginning with "G" could we call them something else? (2) How do they ensnare others in their legal system? Zahir 23:09, 9 June 2006 (PDT)
Fine prints I would imagine. In addition, it could also be that they have an extremly complex "context sensitive" language which can falsely lead to many interpretations. A planet think they sign a short-term trade agreement realising only too late that it automaticaly gets renewed with any form of arbitration only available through the Gromashi (Qromashi ?)'s Interstellar Fair Trading Tribunal. --Marc Pasquin 09:24, 10 June 2006 (PDT)
I see that, but why don't whole worlds repudiate such a system when it isn't even their own? Like the name Qromashi btw. What about having them be major players in a multi-racial polity, sort of like an anti-Federation a la Star Trek? Zahir 06:27, 11 June 2006 (PDT)
Could be, could be. Could be that their legal machinations have created it so that it's like a cross between an anti-federation and the Dominion. They could be the leaders of an unwilling polity held in check by their legal enforcers. Compliance is maintained because worlds that rebel "appropriated" by the Qromashi/Qromaxi? What Marc said about them is exactly what I had in mind. Thanks for getting that out for me, Marc! Seeing the name change makes me expect them to be a sort of Cro-Magnon looking people. BoArthur 06:59, 11 June 2006 (PDT)
Glad to have taken it out of you, hope it didn't hurt. As for the coercion, the Qromaxi could manage to make worlds so interdependant on their "cartel" that to resist would only brings disaster.
They might even keep their hands clear: Planet A sign a service contract with the Qromaxi. Little by little, the planet stop selling to non-cartel planets (Qromaxi give larger and more rewarding orders) until the cartel is the only client. Now, the Qromaxi cut down the price and Planet A has 2 choices: try to break away and face economical collapse and military actions from other cartel planets who realy, realy need their products or toe the line as set by the Qromaxi.
There could even be a policy of "enforced consumerism" within the cartel whereby planets cannot hoard resources or being attacked by the other planetary members. The percentage that the Qromaxi take as "facilitator" between members of course is not covered by the policy. They do have spendings to cover. --Marc Pasquin 18:26, 11 June 2006 (PDT)

How does this sound? The Qromaxi are a symbiotic species rather like the Trill on Star Trek or Heinlein's Puppet Masters or the Go'ould on Stargate. Or maybe the Qromaxi are the Hosts of the Symbiotes. The Symbiotes are very secretive and also high tech, but relatively few in numbers. They are the real decision-makers in the Qromaxi Cartel, which has a policy of aggressive economic exploitation of other peoples, especially those with a lower tech base than themselves. It would be real interesting if this would actually include the CoDominion. The Cartel is more advanced, but controls far less territory and their leaders are excited at the idea of the CoDominion as new, customers. But the Cartel is careful to cloak all its activities in the guise of legality, contracts, etc. and their tactics are very long-term.

It is part of the Qromaxi Cartel's policy to keep peoples somewhat downtrodden so as to continue exploitation. As a result a lot of history in the Antilles Cluster is un-investigated. The Primal Culture of antiquity is something the Cartel doesn't want anyone else to look into, if they can help it. Pretty much the same for the fate of the Goracci.

Meanwhile, a kind of telepathic terrorist group using drugs or something similar exists solely to bring the Cartel down and any who collaborate with it. These telepaths use their abilities aggressively, and seek to force new recruits by addicting them to the drug that fosters telepathy.

The Mariner and her crew of course get caught up in the middle of all this. How does that sound? Zahir 12:08, 12 June 2006 (PDT)

Sounds like a very interesting first Season! I vote that the Qromaxi be the hosts, and that the slugs be called the Ulareen, but that this would only be discovered some time toward the end of the first season. One point that you can bring up is that the Ulareen are so long-lived, it is almost second nature for them to be plotting, caculating creatures. BoArthur 12:11, 12 June 2006 (PDT)
Okay. But aren't the Ulareen the species that share the planet Sagittara? Either way, I'd prefer their species name be very simple, to contrast Qromaxi which is a bit of a tongue-twister. Something like Narn (B5) or Breen (TREK) or Zor (DEATHWING novels) etc. Zahir 16:11, 13 June 2006 (PDT)
The Vot. Singular, vot. Plural, vot. unsure? Vot. Vot are vi? Vot. BoArthur 11:45, 8 July 2006 (PDT)
I like "Vot." Zahir 12:14, 8 July 2006 (PDT)
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