I'm losing the plot of this detailed argument above...!
In most traditions, the RANK title is entirely independent of the ROLE description. Within the Royal Navy, the US Navy and many other similar services around the globe the titles used for officer ranks are consistent, regardless of the specialist role of the individual concerned:
The naval rank of, say, Lieutenant, for example, may, for example, apply to any of: a bridge watch officer; an armaments or warfare technology officer; a fighter or helicopter pilot; an engineer; an intelligence officer; a medical or nursing officer; an administrative or legal officer... anyway, you get the general idea! The RANK with always be LIEUTENANT but the specific name of the role that they perform within the service to will vary according to the officer's specialist training and posting.
As to marines having military and not naval ranks, well that's just a historical inheritance from the fact that their primary role was as "soldiers afloat" and it has been deemed both traditional and appropriate to maintain that distinction from naval personnel involved in the actual sailing and fighting of the ships and (all the other naval branches which ultimately support that function).
The Royal Air Force rank titles can, at times, appear confusing and the fact that they are all apparently geared towards "air-crew" roles is difficult to understand and would seem to sit uneasily with other roles within the service, such as engineering ground-crew, intelligence, medical, etc.
If, however, it is decided when an organisation such as the RAF is founded to establish a new tradition that the terms "flight," "squadron" and "wing" are to be the generic titles for ALL sub-units of the organisation, regardless of whether they are flying roles or not then the officer titles make much more sense. Flight
may not be exactly equivalent to Platoon
but they are certainly analagous terms.
This example is not intended to directly represent the contemporary RAF but let's say an operational "Group" may have a flying "Wing" composed of several "Squadrons," each, in turn, made up of a number of "Flights". This may be backed-up by a non-flying "support Wing" comprised of a number of engineering squadrons, a medical squadron, and so on. In that respect, the officer rank titles are not intended solely to indicate specifically "air-crew" roles but rather to give an indication of the level of command at which that officer operates.
Obviously, the way in which this works nowadays has deviated somewhat from the structure of the RAF when it was first established so the direct level of equivalency between operational sub-unit and corresponding officer title has disappeared a little but it is still possible to track back to those origins. The only RAF officer ranks that never really worked for me were the two most junior; Flying Officer and Pilot Officer - because they really do seem too specific to air-crew roles; the use of "officer" is a bit clunky too. Something like Sub-Lieutenant and Ensign or Subaltern and Second Sunbaltern might have worked better (+/- other prefixes like "Flight-" or "Air-"). Anyway, that's a tangential point.
The same basic principle of creating a new tradition with new terminology would certainly be one option that could be applied to a space force. (Truth be told, I still like the naval-type approach - there's something magnificent about the idea of exploring and "sailing the cosmos"...!!
You're absolutely right, the Dan Dare strip was a very good example of a particularly British "take" on a space fleet, even though it was essentially in international organisation. Sir Hubert Guest was very "RAF" - although I seem to recall that "Controller of the Space Fleet" was
his correct title...? I'll check!
Hampson was indeed pretty thorough in his creation - I have a lot of source material but I don't think I ever managed to put together a complete and definitive rank structure from what I had. I do recall that there were some pretty impressive dress/mess uniforms in some of the episodes!
It's not quite how I'd picture an "offcial" British Ministry of Defence armed Space Fleet but I agree it has some resonances!