Talk:Miles O'Brien (Star Trek)

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What is his rank on DS9? I always thought lieutenant...but everybody calls him chief. Ilyanep 19:02, 15 Jun 2004 (UTC)

It's canonically established that he's an enlisted officer with the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He probably enlisted for the Cardassian War and moved up the ranks. Which has always made it seem silly that he'd be outranked by an Ensign. Ttownfeen 22:00, Dec 14, 2004 (UTC)

When I started the article, I wrote "Because he was a secondary character at first, his rank fluctuated between appearances, sometimes Ensign, or Lieutenant. His rank was fixed at Chief Petty Officer on Deep Space Nine."
Yes, it does seem silly that a senior enlisted man with years of experience would be outranked by a fresh-out-of-the-academy ensign. But that's the way it is in real life and in Star Trek. ShutterBugTrekker 23:10, 14 Dec 2004 (UTC)
Let me give you a little real life perspective. I served in the U.S. Navy a long time ago, as an enlisted man. I saluted officers, called them "sir" or "ma'am", but I rarely received orders from them. I got most of my orders from the senior enlisted, the "chiefs". From my vantage point, it seemed like the chiefs got their orders from the senior officers. Junior officers get their orders from senior officers. Junior officers are sometimes put in charge of small units (like a platoon), but you might notice how they look over to the chief before issuing an order. PrimeFan 19:08, 20 Dec 2004 (UTC)
As the previous poster states even the most senior NCO is required to salute the most junior commissioned officer. However when it comes to actual responsibilities (and pay) a senior NCO may have more. The article mentions that the reduction in rank is most likely punitive, I find this unlikely because what ever action that lead to the reduction of rank would have prohibited him from ever taking over ops in DS9. What is more likely is at some stage he was given a battlefield commission to second lieutenant, but could not progress much further for academic or other reasons (Miles never attended the academy). So instead he decided to switch to CPO grade that would allow him more responsibility, better pay, remember he has a family to support. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:34, 31 July 2011 (UTC)

The page says that since his pips in TNG were silver, he was enlisted. But this does not seem to be consistent at all. Anybody willing to clarify?

I always thought it was funny that the ship seemed to be full of officers and he was the only enlisted man. You never saw any other enlisted ranks. I wonder if Star Trek ever explained this. Azn Clayjar 17:55, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

DS9 added more enlisted men, most of them under the Chief or in the Bajoran militia.
I think it's fairly obvious that it was just a botch job, Star Trek is full of mistakes, as much as we'd love for it to be perfectly seamless. Money is abolished for the Federation though, he probably moved to DS9 to advance his career and as a new experience for him and his family (although due to the fact that DS9 facilities use currency, DS9 Federation personnel may get supplied with an amount latinum or something to use - it's fairly ambiguous). (talk) 00:20, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

I am no Trek expert but I have been rewatching DS9 and Keiko referred to the DS9 position as a promotion I am quite certain he is in a higher position than he was on TNG. He was labeled Transporter Chief on TNG though. I got the feeling Picard ran the Enterprise his own way, like allowing Wesley on the bridge and a position as ensign due to his skills and knowledge despite not being in the academy, so I think O'Brien was treated similarly based upon experience, knowledge, trust and respect. O'Brien seems the sort to resist the bureaucratic higher ranking side of the Federation. I am reminded of Scotty's conversation with Geordi La Forge, he basically didn't want to be a captain, he always wanted to be an engineer. I think O'Brien may be like this or like Ryker turning down a captain's position, he is doing basically the job he likes to do even though he may find it frustrating at times, this is his field. (talk) 13:48, 17 June 2013 (UTC)Snappy

O'Brien's rank is the most senior enlisted rank you can get. Because of this, you'd have to have been serving for a long time in the service to get it. Because of this, it's quite common in most forces (I was a cadet in the CCF so I've spoken to a lot of officers in the British Armed Forces, so this is where I'm getting my explanation from) to show a lot of respect to Warrant officer ranks, even if they are technically outranked by freshly graduated Ensigns. I know on an RAF base, there's a Warrant Officer who is in charge of discipline in the station, and because of this position, he can effectively evict anyone off the station if he thinks they're not properly dressed etc. The thing you've got to remember is there's rank and then there's position. So even tho O'Brien is only an enlisted officer, he's also the Chief of Operations. So regardless of rank, when it comes to operations he is the final word (with the probable exception of the commanding officer of DS9, be it the Sisko, Kira, or the second and third officers if they are in command). Remember that episode where La Forge was put in command of the Enterprise and refused to give command to the Chief Engineer, even though the Engineer outranked him. La Forge had been appointed in command of the ship by Picard so. Rank didn't matter, the chain of command now ended with him until the person who put him in charge relieved him. --Imagine Wizard (talk · contribs · count) Iay amay Magineiay Izardway. 23:18, 29 May 2014 (UTC)

Disambiguation debate[edit]

Moved to Talk:Miles O'Brien (disambiguation)#Disambiguation debate.

History reunited[edit]

The history of the article got severed into two (half was at Miles O'Brien (Star Trek character)) after someone did a cut-n-paste move. I have now re-united it here. Noel (talk) 16:46, 9 September 2005 (UTC)

Ditto for the talk: page - now also fixed. Noel (talk) 17:02, 9 September 2005 (UTC)

Memory Alpha link[edit]

The usual style of linking a Star Trek page to Memory Alpha's corresponding article does not work here, as the new (Star Trek) part of the title to distinguish it from the journalist of the same name does not match the article at Memory Alpha, which just has it as Miles O'Brien. I have for the moment edited the link to work properly, in the same style/text/links as in the original, but linking to the correct article. Unfortunately, this means there are tons of the little link icons, but if we can get a redirect over at Memory Alpha from Miles O'Brien (Star Trek) to the Miles O'Brien page, it would be possible to revert to the old style. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Nikonmadness (talkcontribs) 06:29, 30 June 2006 (UTC)

I have included the template correctly. For reference, {{memoryalpha|Miles O'Brien}} produceses the correct link. The template uses this format. {{memoryalpha|Memory Alpha Name|Display Name}} – Pedantic79 (talk) 01:03, 5 July 2006 (UTC)

Number of appearances[edit]

I'm not sure where to add this, but the character has the second-most number of appearances (217, according to MA) of any in the Star Trek franchise, after Worf. --Xyzzyva (talk) 22:10, 14 March 2008 (UTC)


This statement O'Brien is the only major Star Trek character who is Irish. should be deleted. it is false Katheryn Janeway of Voyager is Both Irish and a major character

There's no mention of that in Janeway's article, and Mulgrew certainly doesn't sport an Irish accent.
Her ancestor is suggested to be by virtue of her surname in 11:59: Sharon O'Donnell. But that doesn't make the character Irish by any means anyway. - EstoyAquí(tce) 13:05, 11 August 2008 (UTC)


I have added a development section (unsourced). It is the next step in taking this article out of universe. (talk) 13:25, 16 June 2008 (UTC)

Name Confusion[edit]

Removed the line about him being referred to as "Colm" in Encounter at farpoint. According to the Script, The Captain referred to him as Conn - the name of his station on the bridge. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 08:18, 19 August 2008 (UTC)

Character homage to TOS?[edit]

The first time I saw the character Miles O'Brien, I thought for sure he was the same actor who'd played Lt. Kyle in TOS. Curl the hair, add some years...'Brien —Preceding unsigned comment added by Bizzybody (talkcontribs) 06:28, 12 May 2009 (UTC)

Work as a Substitute Teacher[edit]

Is there any consensus on Chief O'Brien's work as a substitute teacher at Keiko's school? Was it ongoing or just a one time assignment? It seemed like he had decent classroom management skills, but had trouble relating to his Ferengi students... — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:13, 24 August 2012 (UTC)