Was there only one ship's counselor on a starship?

Discussion in 'General Trek Discussion' started by Jono, Sep 12, 2007.

  1. Dashopkinsfan

    Dashopkinsfan Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    If I were an admiral in Starfleet, I would certainly want counselors on starships – lots of them! Here you have a group of people, professionals yes, but nonetheless; they are all boarded up on ship - potentially going without interaction with other peoples for long stretches of time (say a mission mapping a nebula). They are, at most, a turbolift ride away from probably the most dangerous weapons humanity has ever seen, and there is no one there willing to listen to them. Sounds like a problem to me.
     
  2. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    In "Hollow Pursuits" Barclay is ordered to go see Troi. She's in her little warm-colored office, she turns down the lights, tells him to sit and close his eyes, and as hit sits there he begins to get nervous as she talks in a sultry voice and beings to start to touch him.

    Naturaly, Barc gets all huffy and nervous and bolts out. Which I could see. I probably would too, that or I'd let her take me.
     
  3. Alidar Jarok

    Alidar Jarok Everything in moderation but moderation Moderator

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    Yeah, that was done for comic relief. It doesn't mean that, in normal situations, it would be bad for a ship to have a counselor (he or she should be someone who is a bit more professional, though).

    She's on the bridge because she's a Batazoid, though, not because she's making sure the crew is comfortable.
     
  4. Ryan Thomas Riddle

    Ryan Thomas Riddle Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The military does imploy psychologists and psychatrics; however, what made it a bad idea in TNG was that no one had any problems. GR undercut Troi's role by making her counselor to a crew of "evolved, sensible" humans. I do like her role in the Titan series and wished that she had been a first-contact specialist in TNG as it would go a long way to explaining her presence in the command area of the bridge.
     
  5. Vulcanian

    Vulcanian Commander Red Shirt

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    It wouldn't seem productive if there was just one.
     
  6. Kegek

    Kegek Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Good question. On the one hand, in seven years of Counselor Troi on TNG - the most prominent example we have - there's never a single mention of other counselors on the ship.

    Voyager's crew is so small and their journey was meant to be so short they didn't even bother to get a single counselor. On TOS, McCoy filled the psychiatric as well as medical position... and no counselor or someone doubling as one doesn't bespeak of the tendency for a big staff.

    On the other hand, there's DS9. On the station itself, it's briefly mentioned in 'Hard Time' there's a counselor called Telnorri - and I think it's implied there might be more. But whatever that situation is, Ezri Dax appears to be the only - and chief - counselor onboard in the seventh season... and yet it's implied she was training on the Destiny to be a counselor under another counselor.

    In conclusion: You've got one counselor or less, unless there's an apprentice in town.
     
  7. payndz201

    payndz201 Commodore Commodore

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    After what we've seen of counselors, would anyone want more than one on a ship? :D

    It seems pretty likely that if Troi had been fully human rather than human/Betazoid, and thus been lacking in her amazing ability to state the obvious ("Captain, I sense hostility!" "No shit, Counselor - what tipped you off, the barrage of photon torpedoes against our shields?"), she probably wouldn't have been right there on the bridge. Did we ever see anything to suggest that any other starship had a counselor as a bridge officer? (There certainly weren't any dressed like Deanna!)
     
  8. MeanJoePhaser

    MeanJoePhaser Admiral

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    These ships and outposts don't need the counselors, it's just that the future is so pandering that such positions are created so people with useless psychology degrees will feel needed. I suspect each starship also has a philosopher, too, maybe even a poet-philosopher.
     
  9. Ethros

    Ethros Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Maybe Voyager's counselor was killed in the intial trip to the Delta Quadrant, like a lot of other crewmembers?

    As for the reason Troi was on the bride was because she part-Betazoid, that's a good idea, to predict what the enemy is going to do...
    But then its pretty stupid as to why every ship in the fleet doesn't do that. Even better use a full-Betazoid to know EXACTLY what the enemy is up to.
    I always thought Janeway was pretty dumb for not utilizing the Betazoid on her crew (not Lon Suder, the other one, female)
     
  10. Guartho

    Guartho Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Which episode was that!? I'd like to see Troi on my bride! :thumbsup:
     
  11. captcalhoun

    captcalhoun Admiral Admiral

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    Juliet Jurot seen in Elite Force
     
  12. Jono

    Jono Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Aren't the Betazoids very strict with reading minds? In that they don't believe they have the right and an invasion for them to read a mind without having expressed permission.

    If so then having a full Betazoid on the bridge would have not offered anything extra. Unless they ask, "Can I please read your mind to make sure you're not about to murder us all?" and then you have to rely on the friendly aliens going, "Why sure strange alien person. Feel free to rummage in my mind for anything you can find. There is a particularly good memory of my bachelor party in there. Have a read."
     
  13. JM1776

    JM1776 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Considering the stressors and unusual situations encountered by starship crews, the idea that a single counselor could handle situations in which people required such aid is a bit short-sighted. On Earth one counselor in 1,000 might well be excessive. On a starship, where people encounter giant amoebae, devolve into spider-men, are transformed into crumbly dodecahedrons and find themeselves regularly possessed by alien entities, I think the need for more than one counselor is fairly self-evident.
     
  14. Ethros

    Ethros Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well if it were in the middle of a massive life & detah battle, say of the Dominion War, and the Starfleet ship was about to be destroyed by a Cardassian one, I would hope the Betazoid would forgoe that and just read the Cardassian Captians mind to see what tactic he was planning to use next, so the Starfleet vessel could defend against it.
    After all, the Dominion did invade Betazed, so I don't think they'd mind
     
  15. tenmei

    tenmei Commodore Commodore

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    I know it's just a novel, but didn't one of the VOY novels mention a counselor? With Janeway thinking 'the counselor must have his hands full dealing with a ship full of people who've been stranded in another quadrant' or some such?

    It's also worth bearing in mind that VOY only seemed to be in posession of one Doctor, and one nurse. Doesn't Kim say something like 'our Doctor's dead, and so's our nurse' when he activates the EMH?
     
  16. jayrath

    jayrath Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    It was a very 1980s idea. A counselor on the BRIDGE CREW for God's sake? Why not the chief medical officer, then? Are we afraid the crew is going to go nuts at a minute's notice, or are we looking for alien viewpoints? Really, it makes more sense to have the chief medical officer on hand than some counselor.

    That said, McCoy very obviously served as a counselor, besides his other duties. But he never had a regular bridge station. Nor did Crusher.

    We can ret-con this all we like. But it was dippy to start with. What's next, the bridge yoga instructor? Bridge drug-rehab officer?
     
  17. Trekker4747

    Trekker4747 Boldly going... Premium Member

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    Well, as has been pointed out, it seemed Troi was only a bridge officer because of her empathic abilities and the advantages they offered Picard in certain situations (unfortuantly in practice it ended up being little more than clumbsy exposition.)

    As I recall, though, Beverly was a "bridge officer", allowing her to appear in staff meetings and occasionaly being on the bridge but for the most part she was probably more needed in Sickbay than on the bridge. As I said, Troi couldn't possibly have that many patients on a ship that size so she probably wasn't all that needed in her office.

    I'm disheartened to see that so many people think something as simple, critical, and basic as mental health is a "product of the 80s" to be critcized.

    I'm sure there'd be a lot of menta health needs on the type, and length, of mission the Ent-D was on. Mental health is every bit as critical as physical health so it's no surprise that a counselor was needed on the Ent-D. I just don't think they needed much more than one.
     
  18. jayrath

    jayrath Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    ^^ I do not take mental health lightly at all. I had a rather severe breakdown many years ago, and I owe such professionals my life.

    My issue, Star Trek-wise, is that the counselor had her own chair, right next to the captain's. Trust me, that's very '80s!

    On the other hand, I would welcome Troi sitting next to me. Now and always. :)
     
  19. Praetor

    Praetor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Yeah, when I was a kid I didn't see anything wrong with Troi on the bridge, but now... wow. Her function aboard the ship is definitely an important one but the idea that anyone on the command staff, especially the captain, would be under such pressure that at any given moment he would need to instantly lay on the couch is very, VERY 80s to me. I sort of rationalize it by how she is useful in diplomatic endeavors since the Enterprise was supposed to be the flagship and all, but still... weird.

    Regarding Voyager, there were a number of episodes where the ship seemed to have blue-uniformed nurses other than the smiling Vulcan who was killed in the premiere... I think there even seemed to be more in the premiere than just her and the Doctor. Maybe those nurses transferred from other divisions. Maybe Kim meant that the Doctor and Head Nurse were killed? It still seems like there would have been other surviving medical personnel, even for a crew of only 150, even for a short mission, that would have had to survive, including a counselor, unless that CMO was expected to do everything aboard, from teeth to urology. I do recall Janeway once saying that they didn't have a counselor when talking to Neelix, though I don't remember exactly when. For the premise of the EMH to make more sense, they should have had a hull rupture in the ship's medical section just kill the entire medical staff in decompression.

    Which brings me to my next point... theoretically, or at least as previously established, there are any number of specialists (dentists, obstetricians, optometrists, etc.) on the ship, and the Chief Medical Officer is in charge of all of them... so does that make the Ship's Counselor and the entire Psychiatric Department report to the CMO? Especially since CMOs are charged with the ability to relieve mentally unstable personnel at least in TOS time. (Convenient that Beverly outranked Deanna, isn't it?)

    :rommie:
     
  20. WillsBabe

    WillsBabe Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I think there would be more that one counselor on board, at least more than one practitioner of talking therapies. I base this on the fact that counselors need to be counselled themselves as part of their practise. There should be someone on board who Deanna can go to for that.