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YMMV: Wing Commander
Games
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Was Hobbes a sleeper agent or a willful deserter? Or maybe a little of both?
  • Broken Base. Privateer 2: The Darkening. It was for many people a glitched-up mess, but the cutscenes were done really well.
  • Demonic Spiders: The Jalthis in Wing Commander may be slow, but their six-gun attacks are deadly, making escort missions very difficult.
  • Fan-Disliked Explanation: The whole "sleeper agent" business re: Hobbes is unnecessary, except as an attempt to make him unsympathetic. Think about it: What would your reaction be if the leaders of the nation you befriended a decade ago decide that the best way to stop a war with your people is to utterly destroy the birthplace of your people?
  • Fandom Rivalry: Wing Commander fans often hate FreeSpace and its fans. FreeSpace fans generally hold no ill will towards Wing Commander and wonder why the other fandom is so hostile. It might have something to do with the fact that the commercial failure of FreeSpace 2 completed the fall of the golden age of space sims, yet FreeSpace's modding capabilities and later source code release made its popularity actually rise as it aged while the Wing Commander fandom slowly dwindled.
    • Ironically, a major mod project based on Wing Commander is running on the Freespace engine... Funny how time heals all wounds, really.
  • Fanon Discontinuity: Depending on who you ask, one or a combination of the following: Prophecy and later games, the novels, the movie, the cartoon, and in rare cases, Wing Commander III and IV.
    • Humorously enough, you almost never hear Privateer 2 being shoved into this. Despite the fact it wasn't originally (pun unintended) meant to be a part of the Wing Commander universe.
    • A lot of people like to pretend the Face-Heel Turn by Hobbes never happened.
  • Growing the Beard: While the main campaign of the first Wing Commander and the first Secret Missions expansion pack were miles ahead of anything else available in the early 90s in terms of graphics and game play, the storyline is little more than an Excuse Plot. In Secret Missions 2 the characterization and plot both become much more engrossing. We first meet several recurring characters in SM2, both heroes and villains.
  • It Was His Sled: Tolwyn instigated the events of Wing Commander IV. The game plays it up as a mystery, but everyone knows it by now.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Reinhart (David Warner) in Privateer 2. A captured Faux Affably Evil Kindred leader who give a spectacular Expo Speak concerning the game's amnesiac protgonist's identity. Behold one of the greatest performances in video game acting.
    Lev: Whoever I was, I've changed.
    Reinhart: People don't change that much. Some are born wolf. Some are sheep. You might be wearing sheep's clothing, but your fangs are showing through.
    Lev: Yeah, well. Maybe losing my memory was the best thing that could've happened to me. It's given me a chance to choose who I am.
    Reinhart: My god, this is almost becoming like a religious experience. Forget it. As soon as your old memories returns, you will get back to what you used to be; Your father's son.
  • Retroactive Recognition:
    • Josh Lucas and Francois Chau in Wing Commander III (and IV in Chau's case)
    • Mark Dacascos in Wing Commander IV.
    • In a blink-and-you'll-miss-it minor scene, you can see that the pilot who offers to carry Blair's bag when he first arrives aboard the Lexington is none other than Casper Van Dien.
  • The Scrappy:
    • Everybody seems to hate Maniac (both in real life and in-universe)... Except for the writing staff, since of all of the cast members who get Killed Off for Real, Maniac — the most likely candidate given his rank, status, and reckless behavior — isn't one of them.
    • But then, it seems like his Scrappiness is deliberate. After all, he's played by Biff Tannen.
    • Tom Wilson's interpretation of Maniac (in Wing Commander III, Wing Commander IV, and Prophecy), actually did a lot to redeem him, at least within the context of the FMV footage. He steals all his scenes and is a lot of fun to watch.
    • He's even something of a Chew Toy in The Price of Freedom, where Maniac's constant snipes fail to get a rise out of Blair—but Marshall falls for Blair's prods every time.
      [Blair and Maniac have just defected from Confed and Blair is trying to cheer Maniac up]
      Maniac: At least when I go, I'll be in a cockpit.
      Blair: Come on, cheer up! I still say it'll be friendly fire that gets you.
      Maniac: I don't know. The side we picked to be on has a long, hard road ahead.
      Blair: Will you look on the bright side? At least now you won't have to deal with that Confed promotion that finally came through.
      Maniac: My promotion came?! MY PROMOTION—! <claps> ... Confed, that's—that's not right ...
  • Stoic Woobie: Mariko "Spirit" Tanaka and Michael "Iceman" Casey both have lost loved ones to the Kilrathi (fiance and family, respectively), but don't go wallowing in self-pity over it.
  • That One Level:
    • Anything dealing with flying through a mine cluster in a Wing Commander game. You have to maneuver painfully slowly through these if you want to make it through. At least you can shoot Asteroids out of your way. Try the same with a space mine and...BOOM! Twenty-one gun salute city for you.
    • There's also the mission with cloaking torpedoes in Wing Commander III. Don't stray from that capital ship, or you'll miss the torpedo, and the mission becomes a failure.
    • The infamous Kurasawa-2 mission in Wing Commander. Yes, the one with Ralari defense (you have about ten seconds to destroy 4 heavy cat fighters, or else the craft you're supposed to be protecting goes boom). If you do manage to protect the captured enemy cruiser, you are sent straight to the victorious ending mission sequence. Ramming the enemy fighters works wonders, it turns out.
  • Unwinnable by Insanity: In Privateer, if you manage to run out of jump drive fuel, you'd better hope you're in a system where there are stations and/or planets to land on. If that's not the case? You'll be forced to quit and restart the game from a previous save that you hopefully have not erased yet, especially if it's for an important mission.

Movie
  • Fan Dumb
  • Fan Hater: They exist...see above.
  • Hate Dumb: Lots of people couldn't seem to get past the concept that the Artificial Gravity aboard the Tiger Claw evidently affected the volume just beyond the end of the ship's flight deck, for whatever reason. At least it was consistently shown to be that way.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: A very common complaint, particularly the name of the carrier changing from TCS Tiger's Claw to TCS Tiger Claw due to script editing confusion between editors for the film.
  • They Just Didn't Care: The actors seem to be attempting to care, and many other aspects seem polished, but misspelling common words (breach) and the names of main characters (Devereaux and Tolwyn) is unforgivable. They also mix up actors Tcheky Karyo and Jurgen Prochnow on the back of the DVD.
  • Video Game Movies Suck

Wing Commander Academy
  • Foe Yay: An occasional element of Maniac and Archer's UST.

alternative title(s): Wing Commander Academy
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