Star Trek: Picard, “The Next Generation”
I see what you did there, Star Trek: Picard – so, clever.
The Next Generation had a pretty good send-off in “All Good Things…” thirty or so years ago. The problem since that time is we’ve had four movies and two seasons try to achieve what that episode did so well – all with varying degrees of success.
So, as Picard starts its third season, we’re again assembling the Next Gen crew for a reunion and final send-off.
Let’s just hope it goes better than Nemesis.
So far, it’s off to an interesting start and following the 90’s Trek motto of “canon, we don’t need no stinkin’ canon!” I say this because, at the end of last season, we had just signed a peace treaty with the Borg – something that should be fairly huge and isn’t once addressed or even referenced.
Instead, there is some kind of new threat and it involves Crusher. She reaches out to Picard, who then starts assembling the TNG crew to go out and help her. Well, Riker at least, who is apparently estranged from Deanna and his kid because, well, reasons. Honestly, I keep thinking that the writers for Trek just haven’t embraced long-form storytelling – and it’s showing up again here.
Though it does lead to some fun moments like seeing how a more button downed, by the book captain views Riker and Picard’s exploits. The scene of them stuck in bunk beds as the best accommodations that could be come up with at short notice was a great moment. I couldn’t help but wonder if this sequence might have been a bit more fun if we’d referenced Jellico somehow – cause this captain seems like he’s of the same mold as Jellico and doesn’t love Picard and company playing fast and loose with rules and regulations.
Honestly, it made me wonder a bit about how certain figures in the Trek canon become viewed by their peers over time. It seems like the attitude of “y’all did what you wanted out there” was one that other TNG people have had toward a certain favorite TOS captain of mine. I wonder if this thread might be addressed as we go along in the show, or if it’s just a conflict to make Seven of Nine choose who she’s loyal to most.
I also wouldn’t put it past them to have an Admiral Janeway cameo at some point this season. It only feels like a matter of time.
As for the rest, the story does enough to intrigue me for the rest of the season, and wonder just how long until we see Geordi and Worf drop by for some wacky adventures.
I got behind on Quantum Leap but spent the last week or so catching up on things.
My issue with the series continues to be the same – for the most part, I like things unfolding in the past with Ben (the episode with him caught in a time loop and solving the mystery was a fun twist) but the stuff in the future leaves me cold.
It also feels like they’re stretching things a bit.
Every episode ends on some kind of cliffhanger designed to ensure we tune in next week for more answers.
It makes me think the original was onto something by not showing the future very often. It allowed us to fill in gaps with our imagination and to have a bigger connection with Al as a character. It also helped underscore the connection between Sam and Al.
But now, it feels like the show is leaning too hard into an arc for the sake of an arc. We’ve got another leaper out there and Ian is somehow connected. Is Ian a mole or does he become one? Does he turn against the team at some point? Has he been leapt into this whole time and we aren’t aware of it until now? So many questions and not enough answers to really satisfy me.
4 responses to “TV Round-Up: Star Trek: Picard & Quantum Leap”
Nice reviews. I don’t watch any of these shows, but I loved the original Quantum Leap.
On another note, I happen to be in Nashville as I write this comment. Sadly it’s only for a quick stop, but it’s a lovely city.
Hmm… I started to watch Picard S1 until it just derailed my entire love of Trek and I bailed on it before the midway point. Then, when they announced the Riker/Troi episode (was that S2?) I tuned in for that one and loved how they showcased them on their own planet, etc. However, by what you’re saying now they have *deleted!*? that episode? Because in it, they were still a very loving and supportive couple and their child had died. So, I’m a bit confused unless like you said, they keep abandoning the canon and the long term arc of the series and just choose when and where to rewrite their characters’ own histories? Which in my mind is a bit ackward as I thought for sure this was carrying forward with Riker and Troi from that other episode? You know – somehow they were convinced they needed to leave their sanctuary of calm on that planet and re-enter the fray!?
Or, I just missing something !?! Appreciated your candor.
PS: I boycotted Nemesis on principle. My final TNG film was Insurrection. Just sayin’.
I tried to watch ST Picard and stopped early in the first season because it was dark and dismal — and not in the balanced way of DS9, either. I’ve heard but but good things about the season 3 openers, though, so I’m tempted to give it another shot.
The first two episodes are good. I need to get to the third before number four hits this week.