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YMMV / Star Trek The Next Generation S 7 E 15 Thine Own Self

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  • Fridge Brilliance: Riker congratulates Deanna on finding the correct solution "after trying every alternative." But in her final run of the simulation, she tried no alternatives. That means all of her attempts, taken cumulatively, constitute this part of the exam. (Riker may even have been following procedure by dropping the critical hint to her after a certain number of tries.) While the ultimate lesson is that the captain may have to order crewmembers to their deaths, the exam set-up also suggests that it's a test of how dedicated the candidate really is to passing.
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  • Fridge Horror: Does Geordi know about his role in Riker's version of the Bridge Officer's Exam? Who did Geordi have to send to their death in his version of the Exam?
  • Fridge Logic:
    • Why didn't Deanna have Geordi put on protective clothing before entering the crawlspace? It's not specified, but perhaps there wasn't time. This may have been deliberate. There are several references to The Wrath of Khan and specifically to the Kobayashi Maru test in this episode. Troi asks if her test is about "ability to handle a no-win situation". Riker says it isn't, but adds "my first responsibility is to the ship", giving her the answer; to order Geordi to do the same thing Spock did, even if she didn't specifically think of his sacrifice (centuries ago, but no doubt legendary).
      • Her first attempt shows the ship damage cascading to destruction in mere seconds, Troi probably knows they have no time to do that.
      • Forget protective clothing, why can't she just have Data, who's present in the simulation so definitely an option do it instead. He'd be just as capable of repairing the damage and would weather the radiation much better if not be outright immune to it. I know the average ship doesn't have a resilient android as a crew member, but for the Enterprise "Have Data fix it somehow" is typically an option they use frequently.
      • Data wasn't in the simulation, Worf was.
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    • Troi has sat on the bridge of the Enterprise for years and has discussed the requirements of command with multiple people in the crew. She should know already that being in command includes weighing up risk, making difficult decisions and putting the safety of the ship first when required. But it takes multiple attempts at the exam and Riker letting the solution slip by accident before she figures it out in the exam itself.
      • Deanna knew that making the hard decisions was part of being in command. The reason she failed the test 3 times was because she was looking at it the wrong way. She thought it was a test of her technical knowledge. Riker's hint only made her realize the real nature of the test.
    • A counsellor can just take the Bridge Officer's Exam, just like that? You'd think she'd have to at least go through some courses leading up to one of those. Based on the various tests Riker explains she passed, it may have been that Troi had been quietly preparing before she even spoke to Crusher about wanting to take it.
      • Another explanation could be those are refreshers of what officers learn at the academy, and that they are mere window dressing for the only 'real' test, showing you can send people to die in order to save your ship.
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    • It also begs the question of why Starfleet even has a specific "Bridge Officer's Exam" that takes place in an ad hoc fashion whenever an officer wants to start taking watches, that can be taken multiple times and is not given by a disinterested third party, but instead by a member of their own ship.
      • As we've seen in numerous occasions, in Starfleet rank is paramount in situations where there are no orders\roles allocated by superiors. Why aren't all officer cadets put through this simulation during their time at the Academy if they can be expected to take command at any moment in an emergency? Risking individual crew members to protect the ship is a constant element of damage control training in ocean navies, in space it would be just as paramount.
  • "Funny Aneurysm" Moment: "Congratulations, you just destroyed the Enterprise." Funny snark then. Oddly prophetic statement later when Deanna was at the helm of the crashing Enterprise-D and was ordered to crash the Enterprise-E.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Gia renaming Data as "Jayden" is more amusing now that it's become a trendy name than it was in 1994.
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