In the episode, "Chain of Command", when Starfleet assigned Captain Edward Jellico to replace Captain Picard, was it intended as a permanent or temporary assignment? Did they assign him on a temporary basis, assuming Picard would be returning to the ship at the completion of his mission? Or did they envision Picard would not be returning, and intended Jellico as the permanent new captain of the Enterprise?

  • 7
    "You know what the Chain of Command is? It's the chain I go get and beat you with until you understand who's in rutting command here."
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 14:47
  • @Randal'Thor I don't do riddles, what point are you making, or are not making a point?
    – Pioneer
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 16:15
  • @Pioneer Not making a point, just a reference to another SFF work :-)
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 16:32
  • 3
    we must limit the amount of fun we try and have on stackexchange. It's mostly all business here.
    – Mykewlname
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 16:40
  • @Mykewlname I don't want to have fun
    – Pioneer
    Commented Jul 25, 2016 at 16:40

1 Answer 1


Given the nature of his assignment, there was a very strong possibility Picard would not be returning to the Enterprise. And given how Jellico came in and immediately started restructuring Picard's entire command routine, it would seem he was under the same impression that Picard was on a one-way mission. Starfleet probably gave Jellico the Enterprise with the intention of it being a permanent command.

I've gone into management situations as a temporary replacement, and in those cases, I try not to disrupt everyone's way of doing things because I'll be gone soon. I would only restructure if I thought it was a permanent position, and whether it was even necessary.

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    Perhaps, but putting an asshole commander on your flagship is a bad idea. Also, Starfleet put him command because of his experience with the Cardassians. Surely he was chosen to command the enterprise because of this and the situation it was in. Surely it would be stupid to make it permant when he was chosen specifically for a single mission. Jelilco has no people skills, diplomatic skills, he is generally cold and discounted. On the flagship serving as the beacon of the federation, people may get a very different impression. Why put, in Rikers words 'not a very good captain' in command?
    – Pioneer
    Commented Jul 27, 2016 at 14:18
  • @Pioneer Good point. Starfleet did assign Jellico to the Enterprise based on his previous experience with the Cardassians, and given the urgency of the situation, Starfleet was probably willing to overlook Jellico's "Captain Blye" tendencies at least for the duration of the mission. Commented Jul 27, 2016 at 14:44
  • Jellico was there for one reason: to play psych games on the Cardassians. All else followed. Commented May 10, 2020 at 12:41

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