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In the opening titles to Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes, the voice-over states that the Enterprise has a continuing mission to

"...boldly go where no one has gone before".

I am currently on Season 1 Episode 17, and only once have they actually gone somewhere new, and that was mostly a mistake (when they travelled to another galaxy).

In which episodes does the Enterprise go somewhere new?

  • 3
    Are you specifically asking about TNG (as per the question tag)? – Wikis Mar 17 '17 at 10:36
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    To boldly go where literally no-one has gone before its just part of their mission. "To explore strange new worlds...To seek out new life; new civilizations...To boldly go where no one has gone before!". So its at most 1/4th of their mission statement and thus its not surprising the do not do it that often. – Polygnome Mar 17 '17 at 13:13
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    @Polygnome - Actually, going boldy represents just 11% of their missions. "Taking stuff to somewhere" represents about 60%. – Valorum Mar 17 '17 at 14:05
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    @T.E.D. The problem with that is, technically speaking, aliens are someones too, and wherever they go, they have already gone before us, so we can't exactly beat them to going there! – user11521 Mar 18 '17 at 0:00
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    @Michael - Just to be furtherly anal about this, it was actually changed in the monologue at the end one of the ST movies. You hear (whoever it was ... I'm thinking William Shatner in ST:TMP) say the words "... where no man ... no one has gone before ..." Thereafter it was said as "no one" and was inclusive. It is a great point and worth mentioning. I'm glad you brought it up, because it is pertinent in this discussion. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 Mar 18 '17 at 14:31
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I have counted 20 episodes in which the TNG Enterprise travels to places where there has been no presence from an existing manned Federation ship or colony and no presence from an existing superpower that's known to have shared survey information with the Federation (e.g. Romulans, Cardassians, Klingons, etc). I have also excluded episodes where the Enterprise is trying to find a lost ship or a missing colony.

I have indicated the place, the purpose of the exploration and whether any first contact was made with an alien life-form.

Season 1:

  • Where No One Has Gone Before* (Another galaxy - By accident)
  • Justice (Strnad System - Planetary survey - First contact mission)
  • When The Bough Breaks (Epsilon Mynos System - Planetary survey - First contact mission)
  • Home Soil (Pleiades Cluster - Survey mission)

Season 2:

  • Where Silence Has Lease* (Weird space hole thingy - By accident)
  • Pen Pals (Selcundi Drema System - Planetary survey x 5 - Partial first contact)
  • Q Who* (J two five - Planetary survey - Attempted first contact mission)
  • Samaritan Snare (Epsilon Nine Sector - Stellar survey)

Season 3:

  • The Bonding - (Koinonian System - Archaeological survey - First contact mission)
  • The Offspring (Selebi Asteroid Belt - Asteroidal survey)
  • Tin Man (Beta Stromgren system - Stellar survey - First contact mission)
  • Transfigurations (Zeta Gelis Cluster - Stellar survey/planetary survey - First contact mission)

Season 4

  • Clues (Ngame Cloud - Planetary survey - Partial first contact mission)
  • Nth Degree* (Centre of the galaxy - Planetary survey - First contact mission)
  • In Theory (Mar Oscura - Nebular survey)

Season 5

  • The Game (Phoenix Cluster - Stellar survey)
  • Imaginary Friend (FGC Four Seven system - Nebular survey)
  • The Inner Light* (Kataan system - Planetary survey - Accidental first contact)

Season 6

  • Schisms (Amargosa Diaspora - Nebular survey - Partial first contact)
  • The Chase (Volterra nebula - Nebular survey - Partial first contact)

Season 7

There are no significant explorations in Season 7.


* indicates episodes where there was a distinct lack of boldness, where the Enterprise traveled timidly or under duress.

  • 7
    First contact? If someone is already there, they haven't gone where NO ONE has gone before, have they? If they'd stuck with "no MAN" they'd be OK because aliens are not men. The revised slogan seems to imply that aliens are nobody. – user14111 Mar 17 '17 at 10:55
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    Essentially no one is not referring to no sentient being, it is referring to nobody from the federation. Perhaps a very western imperial view of the universe. – Jeremy French Mar 17 '17 at 10:59
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    @JeremyFrench - I'm going on Pratchett's definition of discovery - "Of course, lots of dwarfs, trolls, native people, trappers, hunters and the merely badly lost had discovered it on an almost daily basis for thousands of years. But they weren’t explorers and didn’t count." – Valorum Mar 17 '17 at 11:19
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    "To boldly(*) go where no one has gone before" (*) or failing that, timidly or under duress. – user11521 Mar 18 '17 at 0:02
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    It seems reasonable to assume that when the Enterprise surveys places with no sentient life at all, where no-one of any species has gone before, generally little drama results, and those surveys don't make TV episodes. – armb Mar 18 '17 at 8:36
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In The Original Series the mission included "where no man has gone before", which was later explained as a quotation from Zephram Cochrane, human inventor of the warp drive (other intelligent species had independently invented it before, of course). At the time he invented it, humans had not met any other intelligent species (and in fact had not even left their home solar system yet). So when he said it, he meant it literally -- he wanted to go "where no man (i.e. human being) had gone before". By the time of TOS, this would already be out of date -- it really should have been "where no Federation citizen has gone before" or "where nobody we know has gone before." But no man (or no one) would ever phrase it like that. :-)

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    It's a pet peeve of mine that TNG changed "where no man" to "where no one". Clearly the intended meaning of the original was "where no member of mankind" had gone before, i.e. no human. The 60's may have been sexist against women, but not so sexist as to say "Women may have gone there before but they don't count." "No one" implies that all the aliens living out there already aren't anybody, which is offensively speciesist. I know that some people got bent out of shape about "man" and took it to imply that women don't count, but IMHO the replacement implies that aliens don't count! – steveha Mar 20 '17 at 3:24
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    It is indeed arguable that the replacement should have been “where no human has gone before,” if the intent was to imply lack of human exploration. – Adamant Mar 20 '17 at 8:25

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