Series and season premieres start to air during a golden age for fans
Another golden age has started for “Star Trek.”
Fans have been impressed with “Discovery,” which took “Star Trek” boldly to a place it hadn’t been before (the 32nd century), and “Picard,” which provided even more insight into the former Enterprise captain.
The new shows, plus all of the previous series, are streaming (or will stream) on Paramount+.
“Picard” will return for its second season next year, and fans are excited about the return of Q (John de Lancie), the powerful being who loves to tease Picard (Sir Patrick Stewart). Yes, Q is intriguing and funny and played brilliantly by Mr. de Lancie, but don’t forget this is the being who introduced the Enterprise to the Borg. His presence means trouble!
But the question with Q is always whether he’s the cause or cure of trouble or maybe both.
So … red alert!
Better yet … spoiler alert!
National media outlets have reported the second season of “Picard,” which starts in February, will deal with a messed-up timeline. So it’s up to Picard and his crew to travel back to the 21st century to make fixes to prevent a horrible future. No pressure.
In addition to Sir Patrick Stewart as the title character, “Picard” has starred Alison Pill as Dr. Agnes Jurati, Isa Briones as Dahj, Evan Evagora as Elnor, Michelle Hurd as Raffi Musiker and Santiago Cabrera as Cristobal Rios.
“Star Trek: Discovery” will be back for its fourth season, starting Nov. 18.
Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green, who was seen this summer playing NBA star LeBron James’ wife in “Space Jam: A New Legacy”) is finally the captain of Discovery. She will lead the crew during efforts to rebuild the United Federation of Planets.
Still aboard the ship are Anthony Rapp as recently promoted Cmdr. Paul Stamets, Mary Wiseman as Acting First Officer/Ensign Sylvia Tilly (a great character!), Wilson Cruz as the resurrected Dr. Hugh Culber and David Ajala as Cleveland “Book” Booker. Cmdr. Saru (Doug Jones) is on the Kelpien home world to help the Kelpien rescued during last season’s finale.
And fans are happy to hear that Grudge, Book’s really big cat, will be back. (This is one case where it’s OK to hold a Grudge!)
Again .. spoiler alert! (OK, let’s turn off the red lights and that loud sound.)
During this season, the Discovery crew will work with various planets and will deal with something they can’t sit still for: a gravitational anomaly. One that is 5 light years wide!
And if plots follow what was promised last season, Dr. Culber will be working to help Gray (Ian Alexander) achieve a corporeal form. He’s the Trill who can only be seen by his lover Adria (Blu del Barrio), and he exists because of the Trill symbiont inside Adria.
Fans are eagerly awaiting the new show “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds,” which is set in the era just before Capt. Kirk and company. Capt. Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) commands the USS Enterprise. Also on board are Spock (Ethan Peck) and Number One (Rebecca Rominjn).
Like the original “Star Trek” series, “Strange New Worlds” reportedly will be episodic. In other words, stories will wrap up in a single episode. In theory, if you miss last week’s show, you won’t feel lost this week. But there could be some season-long arcs.
“When we said we heard the fans’ outpouring of love for Pike, Number One and Spock when they boarded ‘Star Trek: Discovery,’ we meant it,” said Executive Producer Alex Kurtzman in a news release. “These iconic characters have a deep history in ‘Star Trek’ canon, yet so much of their stories have yet to be told.”
A release date hasn’t been announced.
“Star Trek” also has its animated side. The second season of “Star Trek: Lower Decks,” a “Next Generation” era show about junior officers on an unimportant ship, started in August.
The “Lower Decks” voice cast consists of Tawny Newsome (Ensign Beckett Mariner), Jack Quaid as Ensign Brad Boimer, Noel Wells as Ensign D’Vana Tendi, Eugene Cordero as Ensign Samantha Rutherford, Dawn Lewis as Capt. Carol Freeman and Jerry O’Connell (“Sliders”) as Cmdr. Ransom.
Beckett is a great character. She’s the captain’s daughter and has leadership potential, but dislikes authority. She doesn’t like following or giving orders, and she prefers being on the lower decks.
But she’s often the smartest person on whatever deck she’s standing on, even the bridge. And she’s often the one solving the crises on away missions. When a leader is needed, she steps up.
Meanwhile, the galaxy is big enough for two animated “Star Trek” series. Another one, “Prodigy,” features young alien outcasts who escape to freedom and discover a starship and an emergency training hologram: Capt. Kathryn Janeway (voiced by Kate Mulgrew, of course) of the USS Voyager.
It’s a Nickelodeon series that streams, like the other “Star Trek” shows, on Paramount+, and it began Thursday with a powerful pilot episode suitable for all ages but with the maturity, gentle humor, wisdom and sense of adventure you’d expect in “Star Trek.” The storyline involves a mystery about the Federation.
The young aliens are voiced by Rylee Alazraqui, Brett Gray, Angus Imrie, Jason Mantzoukas, Ella Purnell and Dee Bradley Baker.