...Because authenticity is so bourgeois.
James T. Riggins! AWESOME!I wonder if they diddled with the old Kirk family history a bit. I thought Kirk was from Iowa and only worked in outer space, and didn't have some family history in Starfleet. Not that that would be a bad thing, just something new. (His brother was in a ST episode that kind of reminds me of Serenity.) Either way, yeeee ha!
I don't know-- I can't remember (beyond the Trek IV scene you mention) how much of Kirk's past we know about on the show or in the films. It almost feels like that kind of Oedipal drive is becoming standard in these revisionings, though (Bruce Wayne haunted by his father's death, Spider-Man, Luke Skywalker, etc.). It might add some depth to Kirk's flyboy persona, although I hope it doesn't neuroticize the sense of fun and arrogance he should always have. In any case, as you say, Yee-ha! (:Which ST ep was his brother in?
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