Star Trek: The Next Generation: Season 1, Episode 18

Coming of Age (12 Mar. 1988)

TV Episode  |   |  Action, Adventure, Mystery
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Picard finds himself facing a strenuous test of his loyalty to Starfleet, one which the other members of the crew are struggling to cope with, whilst Wesley faces an equally challenging entrance exam at Starfleet Academy.



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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Ward Costello ...
Robert Schenkkan ...


Wesley is off to complete his Starfleet entrance exams and testing and makes friends with Mordock, another of the four candidates seeking admission. Only one of the four will be accepted into the Academy and the competition will be strong. Wesley is particularly worried about the psychological evaluation which will focus on what he fears most. He has no idea what that is, however. Picard's old friend, Admiral Gregory Quinn requests to be beamed aboard and arrives with Commander Remick from the Inspector General's office. Remmick is there to conduct a complete investigation of the ship's operations. His very presence is unnerving to both the Captain and the bridge crew and his questions to the senior officers all seem to indicate that it is Captain Picard who is under investigation with his decisions, judgment and reliability all in question. Written by garykmcd

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Release Date:

12 March 1988 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The title refers to the tradition transition between childhood and adulthood. In some societies it is marked by ritual and can be associated with either sexual maturity or adult responsibility and is typically celebrated at the age of 17, 18 or 21. See more »


Bouncing a spacecraft off the atmosphere of a planet operates on the same principle as skipping a stone on the surface of a pond - in other words, it requires that the ship/stone approach the surface at an extremely shallow angle. The shuttle in this episode is seen to be pointing toward the planet at far too steep an angle to bounce off the atmosphere. See more »


[Wesley is feeling low after failing the entrance test for Starfleet Academy and, thus, the Enterprise]
Captain Jean-Luc Picard: The only person you're truly competing against, Wesley, is yourself.
Wesley Crusher: Then you're not disappointed?
Captain Jean-Luc Picard: Wesley - you have to measure your successes and your failures within, not by anything that I or anyone else might think. But, erm... if it helps you to know this... *I* failed the first time, and you may not tell anyone!
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References Star Trek: The Next Generation: Angel One (1988) See more »


Star Trek: The Next Generation End Credits
Composed by Jerry Goldsmith and Alexander Courage
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User Reviews

A transitional episode.
11 November 2014 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

"Coming of Age" is an episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" that is very transitional in nature. In other words, it concerns events that will SOON be unfolding. Because of that, you might not enjoy the episode so much until you learn more about what REALLY is happening. In one plot, Lt. Cmdr. Remmick and Admiral Quinn later appear in "Conspiracy"--and exactly WHO they are and WHAT they are doing finally becomes apparent. Here in this particular episode, however, their goals are unclear and the pair are involved in some sort of loyalty investigation--and it comes off a bit like the investigations during the so-called 'Red Scare' of the late 1940s and into the 50s. The other plot involves Acting Ensign Crusher going to take the Starfleet exam. While Crusher does not yet enter the academy, this will take up quite a bit of the show later--when he is absent from the ship and a few episodes involve his academy life.

Despite not having the answers, this is a very good episode and when seen as a whole, they are excellent and should be seen by fans. Well worth seeing and well written.

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