When Spock is in front of the ministers being told that he was accepted into the science academy, they appear confused or irritated by his application to Starfleet. Spock says that "it seemed logical to cultivate multiple options". A minister replies that it was "logical, but unnecessary".

Their disdain for Spock, or at least his human mother, is apparent in the scene. However, it seems that it would be illogical to make an unnecessary choice. Was the minister trying to say that Spock should have known that he'd get into the Science Academy? If not, what was the intention behind the "unnecessary" in that scene?

  • 7
    Given that he's the top pupil in his year and that his father is well-connected nobility, his application is a mere formality.
    – Valorum
    Nov 26, 2020 at 14:55
  • 3
    Logical since Spock isn't Vulcan enough to have had certainty in his application to the science academy being accepted (that human influence) but unnecessary because he was definitely going to be accepted.
    – DavidW
    Nov 26, 2020 at 14:55
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    It's logical to have more than one choice but unnecessary since he clearly won't need it. Wasted effort is what he means. Like a first draft pick who also applies for a job at their local superstore
    – Valorum
    Nov 26, 2020 at 14:56
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    You're right that it's illogical to make an unnecessary choice. Unfortunately, screenplays don't tend to be written by philosophers.
    – Prometheus
    Nov 27, 2020 at 1:07

1 Answer 1


Spock's path has been laid out even before he joined Science Academy.

This is a plot point in Star Trek: Discovery.

SAREK: I have created in her a being of exquisite logic to rival the best of our species.
VULCAN: An accomplishment you have achieved not once but twice. Your ward, Michael, and your son, Spock.
SAREK: What has my son to do with this situation? He has not yet begun his studies at the Science Academy.
VULCAN: Upon completion, he will apply to the Vulcan Expeditionary Group, and then there will be not one but two non-Vulcans in its ranks.
SAREK: Spock is...
VULCAN: Half-Vulcan. Another of your experiments. The integration of humans into our culture is an admirable goal, but it must be titrated. In honor of your position and reputation... I will accept one... of your not-quite-Vulcans.

(DIS: Lethe)

This dialogue makes it clear that Spock's path forward is completely planned out already. It's even a plot point how it hurts Sarek to have sacrificed Burnham's place in the Expeditionary Group for nothing, since Spock joined Starfleet instead.

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