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Season Three [Premiere]

Aired On: Paramount+

Release Date: 02/16/23
Action. Adventure. Drama.

"Follow-up series to Star Trek: The Next Generation (1987) and Star Trek: Nemesis (2002) that centers on Jean-Luc Picard in the next chapter of his life."


Star Trek: Picard’s season three opening starts with a bang. A crew member of the Enterprise-D is under attack by mumbling aliens wearing something that looks like a 25th Century plague doctor mask. Phaser file erupts. The threat vanquished. Starfleet is again victorious. Yet this hero … is Doctor Beverly Crusher. And she sends out an SOS to the show’s titular star with a warning… trust no one.


The first two seasons of Star Trek: Picard might have been entertaining but for the true fan, hardly satisfying. Too many set ups. Too much churning conflict solely for the sake of presenting sci-fi action. This new season, being promoted as the final one, seeks to finally deliver. Season three is headed by showrunner Terry Matalas, who previously worked on Star Trek: Enterprise before helming the Scifi series 12 Monkeys. A tried and true Trekkie/Trekker, Matalas has been hinting and teasing a full-on The Next Generation reunion for Picard, and the premiere episode jumps right in, warp factor 9.


After receiving Crusher’s communique, Admiral Picard (Patrick Stewart) enlists the one man he can completely trust: Captain Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes). The two set off together and suddenly… everything is right in the Star Trek universe. They slip into a comfortable repartee that hasn’t fully been seen since The Next Generation’s series finale “All Good Things…” (1994!). Matalas might be providing fan service here, but it is good fan service!


Series regulars Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) and Raffi (Michelle Hurd) return with new roles. Raffi is working on a mysterious new mission with a new handler (albeit a familiar one as episode 2 will reveal) for Starfleet Intelligence. Seven is first officer of the USS Titan, a Neo-Constitution Class starship that makes its debut. Titan is commanded by the no-nonsense (read: conflicted) Captain Liam Shaw (Todd Stashwick) and helmed by a Bajoran, a Vulcan, and a human with the surname of LaForge. 


Matalas has subtle call-outs and call-backs (another showdown in a nebula… anyone?)  throughout the premiere. Most noticeable is Stephen Barton’s score that is sweeping with TNG’s Jerry Goldsmith themes coupled with musical hints of James Horner. Jeff Russo’s closing credits goes full-on Star Trek: Insurrection.  


Season 3 is The Next Generation movie that fans have been waiting on for almost thirty years. Stewart looks thin. Frakes a little paunchier. But they both possess that charismatic charm. They have embraced their roles, their commitment to their fans, and deserve a proper Trek send off. They need to see what’s out there. One more time. 

And if Matalas can have the Enterprise make a cameo… all the better.

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