Opportunist. Risk-taker. Reckless. These are the qualities that make Jim an excellent Starship Captain. He leaps onto air streams, to ride them to uncertain destinations, to beat the crap out of bad guys. He gets into barroom brawls—and insists he’s winning, even when he’s taking a licking. He’s a ladies’ man, who gets seriously bored with too much sameness. Several years into his “five-year mission,” Jim is about to die of boredom, living the same predictable day over and over, right down to wearing the same outfit. He faces every situation aware of its potential, aware of his place in the environment, and with an idea of how to shift it in his favor. “When did you know she was lying”? “Not soon enough”. Jim has good gut instincts, but they sometimes tag along behind – he distrusts Khan, but not fast enough to prevent their betrayal and people being hurt. Jim accurately reads people and perceives their intentions, but doesn’t always immediately trust his instincts (“You knew we’d be attacked”!). The idea of a program that trains you for a no-win situation annoys Jim so much, he hacks into the system and changes it – resulting in near expulsion and getting on Spock’s wrong side. His instant ability to see external methods of accomplishing a task come in handy in highly dangerous situations; he always goes for the quickest, most logical method to get the job done, and understands systems and technology very well. Charming…up to a point, the Jim of the first two films is suave, likable, and not always concerned with people’s feelings, so much as his own bravado. He cares that people think well of him. He feels terrible having let Pike down, but is also angry at Spock for doing things “by the rules.” He confesses his feelings rather easily (“Never trust a Vulcan…” “We make a good team, don’t we, Spock?”, and “You and Spock are fighting? My God, what’s that LIKE??”). Jim is rather insulted when Spock doesn’t participate in social niceties – like saying yes, I’ll miss you too, sir. Throughout all three films, however, Kirk puts others ahead of himself, laying his life on the line to protect, serve, and defend them, for the greater good.

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Kirk is good-natured and tries to make a comedic situation out of serious ones — when his commanding offer asks him, quite seriously, what he has learned from this experience, Kirk jokes that it’s never trust a Vulcan. He tries to appeal to others through humor and other similar tactics, and doesn’t like to admit failure, wrongdoing, or defeat. Kirk chooses to run away from his faults rather than directly face them head on or fess up to his mistakes, until he grows more toward maturity and takes personal responsibility for everyone on his ship. This leads him to sacrifice himself for his crew. He is impulsive and leaps into action, he needs to impress others, and he thinks his way around problems creatively. His 8 wing is hedonistic and aggressive, engaging in threesomes and asserting himself against Spock and his teachers at the Academy. He engages in a brawl in a pub because he won’t back down. He goes after things from the gut, he trusts his instincts, and he deals with a lot of rage – which shows when he pounds on Khan (much to Khan’s amusement) to unleash his anger over losing his captain.