Jeri Ryan On Seven As A Badass And Sharing Borgness With Locutus On ‘Star Trek: Picard’

Jeri Ryan returned to Star Trek: Picard in episode nine, marking her fourth appearance for the new series as Seven of Nine. In a new podcast the actress and executive producer/director Akiva Goldsman discuss the episode and Seven’s arc: past, present and maybe even future.

Ryan on Seven’s ‘badass’ return and how ‘Picard’ is different than ‘Voyager’

On the official Star Trek: Picard Podcast the actress started off talking broadly about her return to the role of Seven of Nine:

This character was never one I thought about revisiting. I thought I was completely done, that was it. So, just the idea of what they were going to do with this character was interesting and exciting to me, and a big enough miracle. The fact that they lived up to all the promises is almost unheard of and amazing to me as an actor. She has been so much fun to revisit and so much fun to play. She has been through hell – I love how resilient she is. I love that storyline.

Ryan also contrasted how different the character and the work is from her time on Star Trek: Voyager:

Seven of Nine was a gift as an actor for those four years of Voyager as well. The arc of not even starting out human and having to learn about humanity, that was a great thing to get to play as an actor for those four years. I love that she is so much more free [on Star Trek: Picard]. I love that I can bring more of myself to her. Honestly, the hardest part of playing Seven back in the Voyager years was because she couldn’t really express emotion and I am very emotional and very expressive!  I am an easy laugh and easy to cry. So, holding that in and keeping all of that underneath was the biggest challenge of playing her. So, I love that I can bring more of myself to her and playing her. She is just cool. She is a badass! I love it.

Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine in “Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 1”

Seven’s shared Borg history with Picard as ‘dark mirrors’ of each other

Ryan also talked about how it has been working with Patrick Stewart for the first time for the series, and how they shared a backstory as both of their characters had been Borg in the past:

I have known the Next Gen cast so well but had only met Patrick once over the years, which is kind of bizarre. But these are two characters that are very unique in that way. For the last two twenty years I have heard fans say: “If we ever see Picard and Seven together, can you imagine how cool that would be?” Because they do have that shared history and been through the war together and survived.

Goldsman expounded on how he sees their shared Borg history:

Jeri brings some kind of deep internalized understanding of that relationship. In episode nine when they say goodbye and he leaves the Borg cube…it is really moving, like in that scene in the transporter room, they have together earlier in the season.

Goldsman also confirmed that even though there had been changes made during the development of the series, they had always planned on having Ryan as a recurring character through the season:

Jeri’s stuff, that arc is pretty much intact. I think there might have been a slightly longer Borg Queen moment in the more original structure of the object. It has always been these two dark mirrors of each other.

Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine and Sir Patrick Stewart as Jean-Luc Picard in “Et in Arcadia Ego, Part 1”

Seven back for season two?

As for the future, Goldsman dropped a somewhat cryptic hint when talking about Seven’s appearance in the two-part finale (she will also be in episode ten):

This is where legacy characters and new characters become the same. This is where—as you will see by the end of the season—you start to see what the palette will look like moving forward.

When pressed, both Goldsman and Ryan deflected the direct question about if Seven is returning for season two.

Jeri Ryan as Seven of Nine in publicity photo for Star Trek: Picard

New episodes of Star Trek: Picard are released on CBS All Access in the USA Thursdays at 12:01 AM PT/3:01 AM ET. In Canada it airs Thursdays on CTV Sci-Fi Channel at 6PM PT /9PM ET and streams on Crave. For the rest of the world it streams Fridays on Amazon Prime Video. Episodes are released weekly.

Keep up with all the Star Trek: Picard news at TrekMovie.

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I watched E9 of Picard again last night and when Seven appeared, it was nice to hear the Voyager theme song again on a new Star Trek episode in 2020. We all know the Doctor, or his likeness, will appear sometime in S2 so at least we will have one Voyager character and hopefully two or more next season.

We don’t know that. There is just some rumor about Robert Picardo being approached or that he mentioned he would like to be on the show. That is a far cry from ‘we know he will be in season 2’.

I appreciate the work done on mapping out where she has been and how she has evolved, but since episode 5, she’s been pretty wasted in the role and the dark mirror and poignancy Goldsman is talking up really doesn’t show up onscreen all that appreciably. If anything, the only thing being mirrored with Picard as of late is how he’s been pushed into the background as well in some regards, or is just treading water after a promising start. It’s tough to see two characters who were given the meatiest material on their respective shows now getting dithered around as part of this ensemble and unfocused/unsurprising plot. Obviously just my opinion.

This has always been sold as a 10 hour movie. I think most viewers will binge this season over a weekend. The producers and writers also know what’s happening in the next segment and we don’t. We just don’t share the same perspective until the season is over. There are many rich and complex characters in this show. We could back stories for a lot of the secondary characters. I miss Picard’s Romulan staff from the first episodes. Kurtzman and company could produce some 90 minute or 3 episode arcs in between seasons of Picard, DSC and Captain Pike series…c’mon CBS make a Pike series. I’ll pay for 3 CBS subs if it’s just about the money.

Yeah… I’m not seeing this “dark mirror” either. Picard has been very much a passenger on this. He seems to be reacting more than he is deciding what to do. I don’t know why this would be visible if we watched the episodes back to back to back. Does binging somehow give you extra scenes?

Honestly… I hope we get a Seven of Nine series. She could carry a show for sure.

They’ve teased enough of her post Voyager backstory that it would be interesting.

I think a Seven show would keep fans excited for the future for sure! It would definitely be the way to go if Picard is really done after the third season and continue more stories going into the 25th century. Certainly much more than the Space Hitler Section 31 show. ;)

Honestly Seven of Nine is a big reason why I am liking this show so much. She’s such an important part of the Star Trek franchise and immensely popular, it would be crazy she didn’t show up in season 2 or just have a more permanent role altogether.

And if the Doctor is showing up in season 2, that reunion would be another big moment for the franchise and fans in general.

Ofcourse she will be back. She is so badass. Her storyline not over. She brings the cool to Picard.

Agreed. We need to see more of Seven.

What an exquisite human being Ms. Ryan is inside and out. All of these actors are giving Emmy quality performances.

I would watch a prequel series with her as a lead and pay a second subscription just to watch that alone.

Her Rangers would fit into a show about the frontier and the remaining explorers that the TNG Federation has abandoned, Starfleet ironically on track to become a combination of holograms and super androids that can do everything Seven of Nine can and more. Hell, the starships will be as alive as you and me based on Picard.

They both make it sound a bit like Seven is dying and they don’t want to spoil it. Either that, or something else game-changing is happening to her. Hope not, though.

Well, to some extent they’ve spoiled it already.

One of our middle-graders stopped watching after episode 7 because they keep hearing/seeing rumours that Seven will die, and they aren’t up for that.

I’ve promised them that Seven was still alive after episode 8, but so far they’re still demuring.

I am really getting impatient with watching Trek on my own first run, and then convincing my family to watch with me later. I actually usually watch the episodes more than once but still.

Last season it was the Project Daedulus episode that turned everyone off. This one it was Sawdust City Rag. Hopefully everyone will get back to it soon enough to finish the season while it’s still on the PVR.