Trekathon 779: Remembrance (PIC)

Picard is back, and this time he has a dog. Spoilers

If you count this as a series premiere then I think this is the best that Star Trek has ever done It’s probably a bit unfair, because there’s no need to spend any time establishing the character of the lead – maybe it would be fairer to judge this as a continuation of TNG? But it’s firing on all cylinders – good writing, great performances, an interesting plot set up, and with core Trek themes at its heart.

Patrick Stewart as Picard is the best thing in the episode, as you’d probably expect. He’s an incredible performer who’s given plenty of emotion and feeling to convey on screen. This is backed up by good writing, where he’s allowed to be smart and work things out just about as quickly as the audience.

It’s a bit early to tell on the rest of the cast, as other than Dahj no one else gets significant screen time in the episode. But what we did see from the supporting cast was strong, and I particularly enjoyed the two Romulans living with Picard.

My only concern is that there’s maybe a little bit too much Mystery Box (TM J J Abrams) going on. There are a lot of dangling threads here, like what’s happening with Dahj, why did the synths attack Mars, and so on. I don’t mind mystery boxes, they can be fun. But only if the writers put something worth it inside the box. So definitely something to watch for the end of the season.

Quick hits:

* I love that the episode opens with a poker scene, mirroring the end of TNG. Gave a nice sense of symmetry and continuity to the show.

* The makeup on Brent Spiner is very good, but there’s only so much you can do about his age. It’s more ‘uncanny valley’ than obviously wrong. But still bothered me a little.

* Time to dog: 3 minutes, 15 seconds. ‘Number One’, could there be a better name for his dog?

* The under scoring is a bit much, I think – especially in the interview scene. Some of this would be better if they just let Patrick Stewart’s performance carry the day.

* I’m not quite sure how Mars could still be on fire – there’s not that much oxygen in the atmosphere?

* Quantum Archive is the newest entry on ‘Quantum [blah]’ rubbish…

* Oh, the Captain Picard Day poster. Lovely.

* For some reason I found Alison Pill really distracting, didn’t feel ‘in place’ – probably from watching too much of *The Newsroom*?

* Bruce Maddox reference, yay! Continuity FTW

* A Borg cube??? Picard, what did you do? That is a *great* episode ender.

 779 down.