While employing the help of a planet's highly intelligent children for a project, the team discovers their horrific imposed fate when they reach a certain age.



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Episode cast overview:
Merrin (as Brittney Irvin)
Stephanie Shea ...
Diane Stapley ...
Rob Farrell ...
SF Guard
Sarah Goodwill ...
Laara Sadiq ...


The planet Orban, with Precolumbian Teotihuacan-culture antecedents and Aztec type pyramids, has made impressive scientific progress, and brings Sam a naquadah reactor to study; when she demands an instructor, Orban official Kalan surprises SG-1 by saying that he does not know what an instructor is, but 11 year-old Merrin stays on base to teach Carter. On Orban, Kalan's son Tomin, another 'urrone' (apprentice) is assigned to exchange knowledge about the Goa'uld with Teal'c and Daniel. SG-1 and Dr. Fraiser are astonished to discover the Orban urrones know neither fun nor school: a mass of useful new information is acquired while they are young and stored in the easily reproducible form of nanites, which are implanted in every Orbanian's brain after the urrone's 'averium', a coming of age ceremony at age 12, which extracts the knowledge from the individual and ends their ability to function mentally, so those children are 'retired' for life and from the active society. The Orbanians are... Written by KGF Vissers

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Release Date:

22 July 1999 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| (Dolby 5.1)


Aspect Ratio:

16 : 9
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Did You Know?


First episode in the series for Heather E. Ash as a writer (out of 5 episodes total, seasons 3-5) and a story editor (out of 18 episodes total, all on season 3). See more »


Major Carter draws a stick figure of herself without any hair. Yet, when the camera pans to the picture seconds later, it has several strands of hair that Major Carter did not draw just moments before. See more »


Jack O'Neill: Okay, uh... fun is what you do to make yourself happy, like music, games. It's whatever you do when you're not learning to be a Rocket Scientist.
Merrin: I am here to teach Major Carter about the reactor.
Major Samantha Carter: sounds like fun to me.
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End Title
Written by Joel Goldsmith
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User Reviews

One of the Best Episodes
6 December 2015 | by (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) – See all my reviews

The SG-1 is exchanging experience with the inhabitants of the scientifically developed planet Orban. The representative Kalan gives a naquadah reactor to Sam to study and she requests someone to couch her. Kalan does not understand the request but the girl Merrin offers to train Sam. Meanwhile Kalan's son Tomin learns from Teal'c the danger of the Goa'uld. Merrin is submitted to medical examination by Dr. Fraiser and she finds that she has nanites implanted in her brain. Soon Merrin explains that when they reach twelve years old, they have a ceremony called Averium when all their knowledge is removed together with the nanites to be implanted in the scientists to bring progress to their people. Further, the children become slow with the removal of the nanites. Jack has become attached to Merrin and does not accept the explanation. However Daniel understands the explanation of Kalan and tries to explain Jack that Merrin must return to her planet. But Jack abducts Merrin to show her something on the surface and outside of the SGC. What will Jack do with Merrin?

"The Learning Curve" is one of the best episodes of "Stargate SG-1" with a beautiful story. Jack O'Neill has one of his best roles in this series and the plot is sentimental but never melodramatic. The conclusion is simply wonderful. My vote is nine.

Title (Brazil): "The Learning Curve"

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