Star Trek: The Next Generation

Season 3 Episode 2

The Ensigns Of Command

6
Aired Unknown Oct 02, 1989 on CBS
7.7
out of 10
User Rating
224 votes
7

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Stardate: 43133.3

Data is sent to evacuate a human colony when the hostile non-humanoid species that possesses the planet by treaty with the Federation, and now want to inhabit it. If they do not leave it within four days, they will be annihilated.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • "Too much honesty can be disastrous/detrimental"

    9.0
    Data's endless attempts to convince a stubborn 'leader' were fun to follow. Though the stubborn leader was hard to take seriously, having his dialog dubbed - and the sync on said dub wasn't the best. Loved the Mozart but here again, Data was not in complete sync with his violin stroke on allegro.



    Great advice from the good Doctor and Captain directed at Data that seems to have paid off. Good efforts by the cast. I give it a 9moreless
  • Picard & Data - diplomats....

    8.0
    "The Ensigns Of Command" is a pretty good episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation but it is not one of the great episodes of the third season or series as a whole. Picard and Data must play the diplomatic game on two fronts: Data must convince a group of people living on a planet in alien space that they must relocate and Picard must convince an alien race not to eradicate the group of people and allow the Federation time to relocate them. Both fronts prove to be difficult in their own ways but the major difference between the two fronts lie in how our stars handle them. While Picard is a veteran in the art of diplomacy, Data is not well equipped to handle personal negotiations at all and therefore must learn as he attempts to carry out his duty.



    "The Ensigns Of Command" features some interesting parts for Picard and Data to play as individual characters and likewise features fine acting from Patrick Stewart and Brent Spiner - and the episode is bookended by a two truly fascinating few-minute scenes with Picard helping Data along in understanding humanity and individualism - but the relocation story is not so interesting. Nothing about the story is particularly gripping or exciting and the audience can all-too-easily guess how it will all end. On top of that, the supporting guest actors who play the inhabitants who Data must convince to leave are all very, very bad in their roles. I would have preferred to have watched trained dogs and cats in the roles instead of actual actors, since they would have no doubt been more vibrant performers. Still, "The Ensigns Of Command" is one of the better TNG episodes - an enjoyable 45 minutes of Picard and Data doing their thing.moreless
  • Nice third season filler episode

    7.5
    This episode features Data in the A story dealing with the difficulties of carrying out a critical but seemingly impossible away mission, while Captain Picard gets the B story back on the ship. It's actually the TNG version of "The Galileo Seven", the original series episode that does the same thing with Spock and Captain Kirk, and is similarly successful – although the intended romantic relationship falls flat on its face. Still, as far as filler episodes go, this one is rather nice.moreless
  • The "Enterprise" receives a message from the Sheliak, who order the crew to remove all humans from the planet Tau Cygna V. According to a Federation treaty, the planet belongs to the Sheliak, who want to inhabit the planet. All humans have four days to vamoreless

    8.7
    The "Enterprise" receives a message from the Sheliak, who order the crew to remove all humans from the planet Tau Cygna V. According to a Federation treaty, the planet belongs to the Sheliak, who want to inhabit the planet. All humans have four days to vacate the planet. Data is the only person from the "Enterprise" able to beam down due to high radiation coming from the planet. Data gets kissed by a woman named ard\'rian on the planet. She supports Data and his pleas to vacate the planet. I have to rate this episode a android emotional 8.7.moreless
  • A strictly routine episode, hurt by a profound lack of emotional genuineness at its core

    5.0
    'The Ensigns of Command' (don't quite get the relevance of that title?) is paint-by-numbers TNG. The plot must have seemed OK on paper and is executed in workmanlike fashion. However, it all comes undone simply because we never quite CARE about the fate of these colonists.



    In fact, quite the contrary: they were portrayed in such a pig-headed, stupid and downright obnoxious way that I was almost rooting for the Sheliak to blast them to smithereens. The guest actors were wooden at best (and often intensely annoying) and as a result there's a shocking lack of emotional integrity at the heart of this episode. It falls flat, basically.moreless
Patrick Stewart

Patrick Stewart

Captain Jean-Luc Picard

Jonathan Frakes

Jonathan Frakes

Cmdr. William T. Riker

Brent Spiner

Brent Spiner

Lt. Cmdr. Data

Gates McFadden

Gates McFadden

Dr. Beverly Crusher

Marina Sirtis

Marina Sirtis

Counsellor/Lt. Cmdr. Deanna Troi

LeVar Burton

LeVar Burton

Lt. Cmdr. Geordi LaForge

Eileen Seeley

Eileen Seeley

Ard'rian McKenzie

Guest Star

Richard Allen

Richard Allen

Noe

Guest Star

Mark L. Taylor

Mark L. Taylor

Haritath

Guest Star

Colm Meaney

Colm Meaney

Miles O'Brien

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

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  • TRIVIA (3)

    • When a town meeting is called to discuss the life-changing decision, only a couple of dozen people attend out of a population of 15,000.

    • There are approximately 15,000 colonists, yet only one leader who speaks for them exclusively and doesn't answer to anyone else. And when he is challenged, he resorts to violence.

    • Trivia: This is a rare episode in which the Enterprise plaque is shown on the wall of the bridge.

  • QUOTES (5)

    • Beverly: Data, telling us why you are going to fail before you make the attempt is never wise.
      Data: But... is not honesty always the preferred choice?
      Picard: Excessive honesty can be disastrous, particularly in a commander.
      Data: Indeed?
      Picard: Knowing your own limitations is one thing. Advertising them to a crew can damage your credibility as a leader.
      Data: Because you will lose their confidence.
      Beverly: And you may begin to believe in those limitations yourself.

    • (after cutting communications with the Sheliak)
      Riker: You enjoyed that.
      Picard: You're damn right.

    • Picard: They don't have to answer, they just have to listen.

    • Ard'rian: You don't really understand human behavior, do you?
      Data: That is something of an understatement.

    • Wesley: He wants the impossible.
      LaForge: That's the short definition of Captain.

  • NOTES (3)

    • The colonist's planet is referred to as Tau Cygna 5. Assuming they are referring to a star in the constellation of Cygnus, the correct designation is Tau Cygni 5. According to the conventions of the International Astronomical Union, a star takes its designation from the Latin genitive case form of the name of the constellation it is associated with. Thus, Centaurus, Centauri, Cygnus, Cygni.

    • Unhappy with his part in this episode, Grainger Hines (Gosheven) requested that his name be removed from the on-screen credits; and all of his lines had to be re-dubbed by another actor.

    • Although shown second, this was actually the first episode produced for the third season.

  • ALLUSIONS (0)

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