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Learning Curve

What rating would you give "Learning Curve"?  

8 members have voted

  1. 1. What rating would you give "Learning Curve"?

    • 5. It's great, I loved it!
    • 4. It's good
    • 3. It's average
    • 2. It's not that good
    • 1. I hated it!

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Production: 116

Season: 1 Episode: 15

DVD Disc: 4

Air Date: 05.22.1995

Stardate: 48846.5


When a Maquis engineer named Dalby disrupts power to the ship's energy grid by making an unauthorized repair, Janeway realizes that she can't expect Starfleet behavior from people who never went to the Academy. To bring the Maquis officers up to speed on Starfleet protocol, Janeway asks Tuvok to train a group of four recruits, including Dalby. Predictably, the Maquis recruits balk at Tuvok's by-the-book discipline until Chakotay forcefully gets the point across that this is not a voluntary exercise.


Like any good drill sergeant, Tuvok comes down hard on his Maquis charges, demanding regulation attire and behavior. Dalby complains to Torres about Tuvok's tough tactics, but Torres suggests that Dalby is afraid he can't cut it. The conversation is abruptly halted, however, when one of the ship's bio-neural gel packs malfunctions, the second time in days. Torres takes the pack to Sickbay, and the Doctor notes that the partially biological component has an infection and must be "cured" before it spreads to the rest of the ship's systems.


Tuvok's rigorous training sessions seem to work at a superficial level, but the Maquis are easily discouraged. Tuvok confesses to Neelix that he doesn't understand why his techniques, honed through years of instructing cadets at the Academy, aren't working. Neelix advises Tuvok to be more flexible in his approach.


While pondering the Talaxian's advice in the mess hall, Tuvok wonders if bacterial spores from Neelix's newly made homemade cheese is being absorbed by the ship's ventilation ducts, serving as the source of the gel pack's infection. The Doctor inspects the cheese, and Tuvok's hunch turns out to be correct.


Not long after, Tuvok and his students find themselves trapped in a Cargo Bay when another system falls victim to the virus. When the Voyager crew infuses the gel-packs with a plasma burst of heat to kill the infection, noxious vapors leak into the cargo bay where Tuvok and his recruits are stranded. Nearly overcome by the fumes, Tuvok helps three of the four cadets escape, then goes back for the incapacitated fourth. As the toxic gas ultimately overcomes him, his three black sheep finally band together to become an effective team, forcing open the door and rescuing both men. Later, Dalby notes that if Tuvok can break the rules sometimes, then maybe they could learn to follow protocol under his tutelage after all.



Kate Mulgrew as Kathryn Janeway

Robert Beltran as Chakotay

Roxann Dawson as B'Elanna Torres

Robert Duncan McNeill as Tom Paris

Ethan Phillips as Neelix

Robert Picardo as The Doctor

Tim Russ as Tuvok

Garrett Wang as Harry Kim

Jennifer Lien as Kes


Guest Cast:

Armand Shultz as Dalby

Derek McGrath as Chell

Scott Miles as Terek

Catherine MacNeal as Henley

Thomas Alexander Dekker as Henry

Lindsey Haun as Beatrice


Creative Staff:

Director: David Livingston

Written By: Ronald Wilkerson & Jean Louise Matthias


Related Items:


virus, bacteria-borne



Brill cheese

putillos, whole green

Laurelian pudding

macaroni and cheese

varmeliate fiber

bio-neural gel packs

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The Maquis members of Voyager learn what it’s like to be a member of Starfleet when Tuvok puts them through cadet training, meanwhile, a virus begins to infect the ship and the source is unknown.


This episode was ok; it wasn’t the most exciting of episodes. I’d say it’s average, but it does have Chell, who is always an interesting character.


*** out of *****

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A fun episode. I like and even agree with the Maquis, and Tuvok was being pretty hard on them. Plus Dalby is cool. He reminds me of myself :)




Well that concludes the first season. That went by way too fast, and it was a year in their world. I enjoyed the first season and will look forward to the others.

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This was an ok episode. I'm not much of a Tuvok fan so it didn't do too much for me. The former Maquis people made the episode watchable.

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I gave it a 4. I rather liked this one. I think everyone sees maybe just a wee bit of Dalby in themselves. I know I did. Coupled with the idea of pasteurizing the ship.... good analogies, logical following of events and ideas. I liked it.

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I gave it a 5. I thought training Maquis not only made sense in light of the circumstances of the crew, but it made for an interesting ep and gave Tuvok a chance to demonstrate some of his awkwardness in dealing with non Vulcans.

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