When I was 10, during the extensive downtime after the accidental shattering of my spine, I had a lot of time to read books and watch TV. One of the things I watched during this period was original Star Trek reruns, and it lead to the formulation of my personal theory on Star Trek.
I was really proud of myself at the time, though ultimately would be rather disappointed much later in life to discover that I was not, in fact, the first person to have come to this particular revelation, though at least I did have the minor salve to my conscience of having figured out something rather analogous to Sigmund Freud’s model of the psyche.
When I was 10 years old.
Sigmund needed to lay off the crack, that’s all I’m sayin’.
So the theory, such as it is, is that Kirk, Spock, and Bones represent the three facets of the Freudian model of id, ego, and super-ego respectively.
Of course, at the time, I’d never read Freud (I wasn’t that weird of a kid), so I just labeled them as instinct, intellect, and emotion, which I still feel is a significantly more straightforward way of looking at the psyche. (Yes, I realize that these are not exact parallels to the Freudian model. Bite me.)
Either way, the holy trinity of Star Trek represent the major facets of the human mind, in theory. That they are, in effect, a representation of the thought processes of a single human.
The question, then, becomes: Who is in charge, for you? Is it Kirk, Spock, or Bones? Who is the captain of your own personal starship Enterprise?
In my case, it’s Spock, 99% of the time. Mostly because during that 99% of the time, Kirk and Bones are raving like lunatics. Seriously. People often have this image of me as being cold & controlled, but that’s largely because an enormous amount of effort by Spock goes into keeping Bones locked in his little cage, and Kirk from randomly punching people in the face.
When I was a kid, I wanted to be Spock.
Now, I realize that, especially under the Freudian model, Spock is doing the daily driving for most of the human race. That’s to be expected. What I mean when I say that Spock is in charge is that Spock is picking the objectives. An awful lot of people let Kirk or Bones pick the objectives that Spock is pursuing; take a look at (/shudder) the Jersey Shore. Is this pack of vacuous douchebags thinking?
After a fashion.
The problem is that they’re making Spock do what Kirk and Bones want to do. And Kirk mostly wants to screw and fight, when you get right down to it, and Bones… well, Bones can be complicated. But rarely productive.
Which is not to say that Kirk and Bones aren’t useful; Kirk, at least, gets the driver’s seat on occasion when Spock needs to sut up and sit down because he’s screwing things up. Let’s say I drop something; Spock immediately begins calculating trajectories, angles, and trying to figure out where the object is going, how fast it’s going to get there, what’s going to happen when it impacts, and where it’s going to go next. Kirk, on the other hand, already knows all that stuff, and just needs Spock to give up the reins for a second so he can catch whatever it was that I just dropped. Spock is, in effect, trying to replicate a process that, over the preceding millions of years, has evolved to become functionally automatic, particularly in men. And no matter how fast Spock is, he’s not nearly as fast as Kirk when it comes to that sort of thing.
And as for Bones, well… If we couldn’t enjoy life, what the purpose of living it? Even if, most of the time, I have to be constantly telling Bones that what he’s feeling/thinking isn’t appropriate, real, or productive. That no, people aren’t really thinking that about him, that no, he needs to sit down and not take charge to express my random emotional fluctuations at inappropriate times, and that no, he really isn’t alone and unloved in the universe despite how often it may feel that way. Because Bones, when you get right down to it, can be a whiny little bitch sometimes.