Enterprise returning to Spacedock
After the incident with Khan in 2285 and the Enterprise's return to Spacedock, do you think Kirk was going to be able to take her out again? Kirk had asks Scotty, "How long 'till we can take her out again?" Remember, he already had one five year mission, and then an additional one after the V'Ger incident. The Khan incident wasn't meant to happen and Kirk was originally an observer for the cadets for two weeks. After the two weeks, Kirk would just be continuing his career as an instructor at the Academy. So, upon Entering Earth again, why would he assume Starfleet would let him take the ship out again?
That is a good point, am guessing he either meant to take her out as a training vessel or to go and save Spock.
It always confused me after the end of TMP how they just went off into the distance to begin their new adventure as didn't Kirk have a desk job that he just effectively ditched? Also was he an Admiral here or a Commodore or something, I can't imagine he was a Captain since had the authority to demote Decker?
I don't know how it would work in a 'real' naval hierarchy but Kirk appears to have been referred to as 'Admiral' until his demotion in TVH..................although I'm not sure how that would fit in with the supposed second five year mission that took place between TMP and TWOK. Would an Admiral command a full mission? This sounds like the kind of thing the old Encyclopedia would have an angle if I still had my copies of them.
Strictly speaking I think it's probably not meant to be thought about logically (especially since Starfleet also just casually drops in the decommissioning without any advance word) but I'm not sure it could even be rationalized entirely. There's no real answer to why Kirk assumed as much, assuming that by 'we' he meant with him in command. The only other meaning for 'we' could just be referencing Starfleet but that's never how I''ve taken it.
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