When Star Trek: The Next Generation went off the air in 1994, it had accomplished something remarkable. The show had taken the familiar elements of the original series, added new characters and new storylines, and breathed new life into a franchise that many thought was a niche science fiction show of the late 1960s.
Dynamic storytelling and complex character development helped make the show a success, but who could have imagined that the main character with a French last name and a Shakespearean delivery–Jean-Luc Picard–would become one of the most beloved Star Trek captains ever? When The Next Generation ended, fans thought they had seen the last of the now iconic Captain Picard and the crew: Data, Worf, Geordi La Forge, Deanna Troi, William Riker, and Dr. Beverly Crusher.
In 2019, whispers swirled around the internet that a new show called “Picard” might be in the works. The rumors turned out to be true and in 2020, at the start of the COVID -19 pandemic, Season 1 premiered on Paramount +. Season 2 quickly followed and in the spring of 2023, the final string of episodes (Season 3) started streaming with one final adventure for fans.
Based in the year 2041, the events of Star Trek: Picard take place 18 years after the last major motion picture to appear in theaters starring the crew of The Next Generation, titled Star Trek: Nemesis. All three seasons of Picard can be watched independently of each other, but Season 3 stands apart as one final story about the original Next Generation crew, with plenty of nostalgic nods to the past. Once again, the USS Starship Enterprise–D flies through the stars on a mission to save the galaxy from a cast of bad characters threatening to destroy Earth.
Picard Season 3 reunites the old crew on the bridge of the starship, which brought some tears to deeply committed fans of the much-beloved series. In other words, it brought some tears to me. (Paramount +)
About the Author
Sam Gutierrez is the Associate Director at the Eugene Peterson Center for the Christian Imagination at Western Theological Seminary. More of his creative work can be found at printandpoem.com