Portrait of a Character – Tristan Curtis
Tristan Curtis has problems in all timelines and universes, it seems.
I see the actor Johnny Galecki for Tristan Curtis.
I like this smart, likable comedic actor who can also play sensitive. Also, I think it’d be a kick to see him in a not so nice role.
Further, I like the idea of someone who seems harmless to be a Security crewman and, inevitably, a pretty awful guy in some scenarios.
Prickly and a bit off, Tristan is quite the outsider. In the E2 stories, he is out of the genetics sweepstakes in the first kick back in time. He and Daniel Chang take out their frustrations in some horrible ways, particularly in The Three of Us. Because Tristan is something of a follower, it’s entirely possible that he was just following what Dan or Gary Hodgkins was doing. In Everybody Knows This is Nowhere, he understands what a horrible person he was. Given a chance to do better, he takes it.
In the prime timeline, he plays cards with Malcolm, Hoshi, and Sophie Creighton, in Cobbled Together, and hits on Sophie. In Shell Shock, he’s one of the accused. Much of the time, he works with Gary Hodgkins, and the two are friends.
During the second kick back in time, Sandra is somewhat bereft, as Brooks Haynem has died young. Because Tristan is looking for a better life for himself, he goes after Sandra, although she is often a rather mean person. They have a daughter who they name Penny (which is of course a shout-out to Galecki’s series, The Big Bang Theory). However, before Sandra’s death, they separate. After her death, it’s unclear whether Tristan gets into another relationship, although he probably does not, given the dearth of women on board.
In the Mirror, Tristan is a guard. Paired with Hodgkins, the two of them guard T’Pol when she’s in the brig, and then witness T’Pol’s death, in Throwing Rocks at Looking Glass Houses. They also guard Empress Hoshi when she’s pregnant with Izo, in Coveted Commodity, and they try to listen in as Travis and Doctor Morgan discuss the baby’s condition.
In the alternate timelines set up in Temper, they die when José Torres crashes the ISS Luna into Malcolm‘s ship, the USS Bluebird. When the prime timeline is restored, they are executed for failing to prevent Chip Masterson from escaping to the surface of Lafa II with Lucy Stone and his children with the Empress, Takara and Takeo.
“We’re gonna die down here, Mayweather. Don’t shoot! We’re done here.”
Even gentle-looking people can be monsters. They can be deadly, and they can be abusive. Tristan shows that. He has few chances, in my fiction, to be a good guy. I don’t think I’ll change that. I like him wicked.