The film never takes the time to consider how little thought Khan would’ve given to killing Pike, a disabled person. Khan likely believes that all disabled people deserve to die for the good of humanity. Hell, he probably had an extermination program against disabled people during his heyday. By ignoring Khan’s eugenicist ableism, the film loses a good deal of the moral complexity found in Star Trek.
We never see Admiral Marcus weigh the options of aligning with a genocidal murderer in the name of Federation security. If Khan advised him to implement a eugenics policy to save the Federation, would Marcus do it? Who would Marcus kill to protect the many? Would he go for Pike, one of his own officers?
We also never see Kirk truly consider the ethical implications of teaming up with Khan for the infiltration of Marcus’ starship. Is Kirk just as bad as Marcus now? By partnering with a man who would want Pike exterminated, does Kirk betray his memory? Is stopping Marcus worth the risk of Khan escaping and conquering Earth again?
But none of these kind of questions get asked in the film because the J.J. Abrams version of Star Trek is more interested in gunfights and girls in their underwear than the hard questions that need to be debated to build a better future for life on this planet and far beyond.
I wonder if they would have had time to do all that? Although it seems to me they did cut parts out of the movie.
Isn’t the point of the show and the movies to spark the discussions within ourselves, not to have the discussions for us?