What We Learned at the Star Trek: Picard Season 3 TCA Panel (2024)

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Published Jan 9, 2023

The third and final season returns on February 16!

By

Christine Dinh

What We Learned at the Star Trek: Picard Season 3 TCA Panel (1)

StarTrek.com

The highly anticipated return of Star Trek: Picard is a little over a month away.

Ahead of its upcoming release, the Star Trek: Picard cast and creatives joined today’s Television Critics Association (TCA) winter press tour. The Star Trek: Picard panel at Paramount+’s TCA presentation featured stars Patrick Stewart, Gates McFadden, Michael Dorn, Jeri Ryan, and Michelle Hurd, along with showrunner and executive producer Terry Matalas and executive producer Alex Kurtzman.

Here are five things we learned during today’s presentation!

Star Trek: Picard Season 3 Teaser Art

Kicking off the presentation, Matalas revealed special teaser art for the season, below!

What We Learned at the Star Trek: Picard Season 3 TCA Panel (2)

StarTrek.com

The Season’s North Star

Addressing the room of journalists, Matalas shared what the guiding principle was for this third season, and why it was a good opportunity to incorporate key characters from the Star Trek: The Next Generation era.

After Star Trek Nemesis, the creative team felt there was an opportunity to tell one more final story involving Jean-Luc Picard and The Next Generation crew, giving them a proper send-off. “We were faced with a really unique opportunity to do one last story telling a Picard story, a very personal story,” stated Matalas. “How better to end that journey than to look back at the beginning and bring his friends and family from Star Trek: The Next Generation.”

“In the case of this season, it’s a really exciting time in the Star Trek universe for long-term fans of The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager — so many storylines that were set up that we’re thrilled to explore here,” added Matalas.

On incorporating elements of legacy Star Trek and the new stories of the past few years, Alex Kurtzman explained, “The essential nature of what Star Trek is…about Roddenberry’s vision of optimism. It doesn’t mean you can’t go into dark places; it just means that optimism is the core tenet of Star Trek.”

“Besides the optimism, especially in Season 3, but throughout all of Star Trek, is the collaboration — that people can disagree with what to do, but somehow or other, they collaborated,” added Gates McFadden.

The Impact of Time

Speaking on his return to the titular character after all this time, Patrick Stewart shared a previous anecdote with Alex Kurtzman, “What excited me about starting work on Picard was that I had lived nearly 35 years since I first put on the captain's uniform. And there is no doubt that, in that time, the world has changed. I have changed too!”

"I wanted the series to show the impact of those years that had passed and how much one might change,” continued Stewart. “How much our mindset and whether fears become greater or less. Right now, with the condition of the world, my fears are high and full of anxiety. And so I wanted that to be incorporated."

Echoing Stewart, Michelle Hurd expressed, “The whole thought and concept of Star Trek was to hold up a mirror to society.”

The Thrill of the Action

For Gates McFadden, she couldn’t be more thrilled with Dr. Crusher’s role in this third season. “I love kicking ass, first of all,” McFadden quipped. “I always wanted to do more action.”

Lavishing praise on the writers for allowing more physicality, McFadden revealed she had a blast on the action sequences, which highlighting her background as a choreographer, “There’s a much bigger range of Crusher in this season.”

The Evolution of Worf

Following the teaser trailer reveal at last year’s NYCC, fans immediately latched onto a more mature Worf.

Elaborating on where Worf fits in Star Trek: Picard, Michael Dorn explained, “Worf has always been on a journey. He’s always been looking and searching, through TNG and DS9, for who he is. And that’s one thing I wanted to impart to [the creative team].”

On Worf’s arc on Picard, Dorn added, “There’s things that Worf hasn’t done, but you have to take a risk.”

Teaser Trailer | Star Trek: Picard - Season 3

Star Trek: Picard features Sir Patrick Stewart reprising his iconic role as Jean-Luc Picard, which he played for seven seasons on Star Trek: The Next Generation, and follows this iconic character into the next chapter of his life. LeVar Burton, Michael Dorn, Jonathan Frakes, Gates McFadden, Marina Sirtis, Brent Spiner, Jeri Ryan, and Michelle Hurd star alongside Stewart in the third and final season of the hit original series.

The final voyage begins on February 16! Seasons 1 and 2 of Star Trek: Picard are available to watch now.

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Stay tuned to StarTrek.com for more details! And be sure to follow @StarTrek on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Christine Dinh (she/her) is the managing editor for StarTrek.com. She’s traded the Multiverse for helming this Federation Starship.

In addition to streaming on Paramount+, Star Trek: Picard also streams on Prime Video outside of the U.S. and Canada, and in Canada can be seen on Bell Media's CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave. Star Trek: Picard is distributed by Paramount Global Content Distribution.

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