Hey! Hallie here!
I haven’t written about ‘Star Trek’ here in a while despite the fact that it’s one of my favorite franchises at the moment. That definitely doesn’t have anything to do with my love of ‘Star Trek’, but more because I haven’t really found much to talk about with the slowing down of ‘Star Trek’ content actively being released. But now the highly anticipated season 3 of ‘Picard’ is just a week away and there’s a lot to talk about. Between my theories for the season, my hopes for the story, and my interpretation of certain interviews given recently, I have a lot of opinions to give. To be honest, I’m not sure how I feel about this season going into it. We’re being promised a lot, especially with the reuniting of ‘The Next Generation’ cast, but ‘Picard’ has promised a lot before and failed to deliver. There’s also some statements the creators have made that I feel are very misleading. But, just like every other fan of Trek, I want this season to be good. Very badly. So let’s get into the information we have and what I want to see.
Bringing in ‘The Next Generation’ Cast:
The main thing we know about this season is that the story will surround Picard reuniting with his crew. Given the darker and more dire feel of the trailers, we’re lead to believe that the crew of the Enterprise has become significantly edgier since they’ve parted ways. Will and Deanna aren’t as much of a concern where the edginess is involved, which I appreciate. The two have already been introduced in ‘Picard’ as pretty wholesome parents way back in the first season. I don’t doubt the two will be effected by the darker tone being struck here, but probably less so than their peers. Will is still taking on the role of a reasonable friend who can be counted on to break the tension, and Deanna is always the empathetic shoulder to cry on who often ends up being the voice of reason. Neither appear to be withholding some sort of dark side to go with those roles. On the other hand, Geordi appears to be an almost reluctant addition to the team. Given that he’s already been described as a family man, I think it’s clear that Geordi is going to resist rejoining Picard for the sake of his family. He might even resent that Picard needs him, which will be an interesting way to create tension. As for Worf, his appearance in every trailer usually comes with some sort of wisdom it sounds as though he’s sharing with Picard. It makes me think that Worf will be looking back on his life quite a bit in this season and learning from it, which really can’t hurt.
Then we have Beverly, who’s the most interesting character in all of the trailers so far. Not only is she the one cryptically warning Picard not to trust anyone, she’s also shown getting into crazy phaser battles and even getting cryogenically frozen. I think that we’re going to spend some time in this series searching for Beverly, who we know Picard will be trying to track down after being tipped off that she’s gotten herself into a dangerous situation. But I don’t think we’ll spend too much time without her. Gates McFadden has already been slighted enough when it comes to screen time and I can’t imagine them doing that to her again. I’m really not sure about Lore at this point. It’s hard to tell what role he’ll play, and I don’t trust them to make him as relevant as he deserves. Especially with the interesting addition of Moriarty who takes up much more trailer time, and the admittedly uninteresting villains that are set to be our main source of conflict for the season. Brent Spiner has often gotten the short end of the stick when it comes to writing in ‘Picard’, and with the sheer amount of villains I don’t see this season being any different. Overall I’m not so sure about the darker feel of this season, which is definitely meant to convince us that one or all of the characters might die. It is the final season after all and I do think we can expect a major character death. But I think it’s further cementing the hopeless, morally questionable universe and characters that fans have criticized in ‘Picard’ since day one. So far, I can’t see this season winning over die-hard fans of ‘The Next Generation’ that they’ve since alienated with ‘Picard’. People who like ‘Picard’ will probably enjoy it, though.
Bringing in the ‘Picard’ Regulars:
Seven of Nine and Raffi are our only returning characters of the regular ‘Picard’ cast aside from Jean-Luc himself. The trailers spend very little time on either of these characters, but I wouldn’t look too much into that yet. After all, season 2 of ‘Picard’ advertised mostly Q in their promotional materials and ended up putting him completely on the back burner for the sake of the series regulars. (No I’m totally not still bitter about that.) Seven of Nine is now taking up a command position, so I imagine we’ll get to see her learning how to be a leader. What makes that lesson even more interesting is the ultimately selfish way she’s been living recently. Everything has come down to finding her own revenge or rediscovering her own sense of right and wrong. There’s nothing completely wrong with that, but seeing her step out of that will be refreshing. Raffi, on the other hand, looks as though she’ll be taking a lot of personal instruction from Worf. The trailers paint her as a warrior who’s never gotten over the hurt and pain from her past. Remember when I said it looks like Worf will be doing some self reflection and healing? I think he’s probably going to relate a lot to Raffi and use that to lead her into healing as well. And though the trailers haven’t shown much, if any, of this, I really hope they further explore and develop the romantic relationship between Seven and Raffi. I love them as a couple and they deserve all the screen time for their adorable relationship.
Bringing in ‘Deep Space Nine’ or ‘Voyager’:
Recently one of the showrunners gave an interview claiming that this season of ‘Picard’ also carries on the stories of ‘Deep Space Nine’ and ‘Voyager’ in an effort to make fans of both those franchises feel heard. After the interview various Trek fans began freaking out over this huge news. But I don’t think this news is as big as everyone hopes. I love ‘Deep Space Nine’. I’ve been dying for a continuation of the story, so much so that I nearly cried when I saw Kira Nerys return in ‘Lower Decks’. But I think the showrunner is throwing out these titles just to get fans of all Trek series excited for the new ‘Picard’ season. I think the amount ‘Deep Space Nine’ will play a role in the story will begin and end with Worf’s past. He was a major character in ‘Deep Space Nine’ after all. It was in that very show that he lost his wife. Fans hoping for anything else are, in my opinion, likely to be disappointed. The same goes for ‘Voyager’. The inclusion of ‘Voyager’ will probably just be past instances Seven has to grapple with and nothing more. I really don’t want to say that fans emotions are being manipulated here, but once again, it wouldn’t be a first for ‘Picard’. I really do want to believe that they’ll bring in more characters from other franchises. I even want to believe that after ‘Picard’ is over they’ll move on to other characters whose stories may not be completely finished. But I don’t have high hopes.
I realize that a lot of this post is full of my hesitancy when it comes to the new season. I don’t even hate ‘Picard’! I thought the first season was better than many Trek fans gave it credit for, and the second season, while a complete mess, still gave us some of my favorite character interactions in all of ‘Star Trek’. I just feel that ‘Picard’ has let myself and other fans down many times when it comes to the lofty promises they’ve made, and we’ve gotten to the point where I don’t trust the showrunners anymore. Not completely, anyway. I really hope this season is good. I’ll be reviewing it here as it comes out and I’m excited to start watching it next week! But I think at this point, it’s smartest to go into ‘Picard’ with an open mind but low expectations.
Don’t do anything fun until I get back!