All Access Star Trek Goes ‘Lower Decks’ With Mike McMahan To Talk Jazzy Riker And Shaxs’ Replacement

All Access Star Trek podcast episode 41 - TrekMovie - Mike McMahan

[Mike McMahan interview starts at  23:11]

After talking through the news—a Strange New Worlds update from Anson Mount, John de Lancie’s return to sharing Picard news on Cameo,, the latest on cons in Europe and the U.S., the death of actor Norman Lloyd at 106, a “Live Long and Prosper” vaccination campaign, Gates McFadden’s podcast launch, and the Discovery season 3 DVD offerings—Tony and Laurie get to the main part of their podcast: Tony’s brief but packed interview with Lower Decks creator/showrunner Mike McMahan. Mike talks about Easter eggs, Riker’s personality traits, and the way all the Star Trek showrunners touch base to maintain “a cohesive understanding of the timeline.”

They wrap things up by recommending an Inglorious Treksperts episode featuring a staged, live reading of Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home and the results of some Emmy sleuthing around TNG’s “Nemesis.”

Links to topics discussed in the pod:

Anson Mount Says ‘Star Trek: Strange New Worlds’ Is Off To A Smooth Start, Despite Protocols

John de Lancie on Cameo

Destination Star Trek Germany Moved To 2022, London Event Re-Confirmed For November 2021

Norman Lloyd, Star of ‘Saboteur’ and ‘St. Elsewhere,’ Dies at 106 in The Hollywood Reporter

Norman Lloyd interview from April 2020 in The Hollywood Reporter

Los Angeles Healthcare Group Launches “Live Long & Prosper” Vaccination Campaign

InvestiGates on Apple

Details Revealed For ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ Season 3 Blu-Ray, DVD And Steelbook; Arriving In July

Additional mentions:

Interview: Mike McMahan Talks ‘Lower Decks’ Season 2, Star Trek Easter Eggs, And Coordinating With ‘Prodigy’

All Access Star Trek Explores The New Extended Literary Universe With Author James Swallow

Trekbits: 

Tony: Inglorious Treksperts podcast: Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home live with Mary Stuart Masterson, Terry Farrell, Ethan Phillips, and more.

Laurie: The 1994 Emmys program book page featuring nominations in Outstanding Individual Achievement in Makeup For a Series

Makeup Emmy nominations page 1994

Let us know what you think of the episode in the comments, and please post your suggestions for topics we should cover in the future as well as guests you’d like us to have on.


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Great episode guys; had a stressful week so it was a nice start for my weekend. Thanks.

Let us be your gateway to relaxation

Frakes is reminding me more of Brian Blessed as time goes on! Which is very much a compliment!

I also first thought Cardassian, and was typing this up when yous said it. In addition to the narrative reasons you outlined, there’s also the fact that Cardassia is in the midst of a total rebuilding and restructuring of their society at this time, postwar. It’s perfect for some of their populace to begin integrating more with the Alpha Quadrant galactic community, such as a few of them joining Starfleet.

Picard’s alive?!!!?

Great episode! I liked it in this episode, and prior episodes, where you intercut some interviews with your own insights. It’s a nice way to make a fuller meal of a shorter interview. This podcast has been a nice, steady outlet during this (relatively) brief Trek hiatus.

Thanks so much! We definitely want to have Mike McMahan on the podcast for real, but Tony got a great interview and we wanted to make the most of it.

I’m guessing that we will see the Alpha Quadrant on Prodigy. Somebody in the Alpha Quadrant must have sent the Starfleet ship with holo-Janeway to the Delta Quadrant. Plus, Okona is apparently going to be on this show, and now we’re hearing that other legacy characters are showing up. Maybe we will see scenes of Starfleet trying to figure out what happened to their starship, and eventually they will try to get it back from these alien kids.

Okona will be on Lower Decks, not Prodigy. Same for the other legacy characters! Both animated, but different shows.

I thought Campbell said that he was going to be on the Nickelodeon show. That would be Prodigy. From this interview, it sounds like there will be legacy characters on both shows.

Oh right, now I remember the confusion. He said Prodigy, we thought he meant Lower Decks… interesting. So it might be Prodigy. Or he didn’t know what was what. Or I don’t know what is what.

I agree that Lower Decks would make more sense. Both because of the setting, and just because the character would fit right in on that show,. He said he’s on Prodigy though, so I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

He might be the reason for the ship getting to the Delta quadrant. He’s a scoundrel, so maybe he somehow steals a starship, then has to bury it on the planet where the main cast finds it.

I thought it was rather satisfying that Laurie ended up being right about the Emmy-nomination thing.

It’s especially funny that I was looking for evidence to prove that I was wrong! I hope Gates told Michael Westmore and that he feels happy knowing that. He’s a genius and has obviously done a massive amount of award-winning work, but I hope he now knows that “Genesis” scored a nomination.

Hopefully! Would’ve been nuts for that episode not to be nominated, anyways.

Anthony is always agitating against ‘easter eggs’. Why? Loosen up! And why didn’t you ask him about Badgie?

Last edited 1 month ago by Anthony Thompson

I don’t think Tony agitates against Easter eggs! Lol. He actually makes a point of spotting them, so much so that he devotes a post JUST to the ones on Lower Decks, separate from his review. (And I don’t think any of us had any questions about Badgey. I guess he could’ve asked if he’s coming back, but with only ten minutes….)

Thanks for another great podcast. It’s become part of my weekend and I really love the discussions. Thanks also for the links to the other material including the “Inglorious Treksperts”. I listened to “The Voyage Hone” which was great fun.

Also check out their Treksperts Briefing Room episodes about “Cause and Effect” and “Magic To Make The Sanest Man Go Mad.” Both really entertaining. Their back catalogue is full of good stuff!

Thanks Laurie. Looks like a treasure trove of good listening.

Fantastic interview with Mike McMahan!

I didn’t really think to listen to it since already you posted the main parts on it on the separate article but man hearing all the little extra details makes it more fun and interesting!

I can listen to both you guys and McMahan talk Star Trek all day. He really loves the franchise and you really do feel that translated through the show itself. And yes I think there was a great little reveal that basically both LDS and PRO will be using some of the same characters, just in different time periods. Obviously the first thought is Janeway herself but it sounds like it will be characters McMahan had no idea PRO was going to use so that can literally be anyone (minus Sisko or Data mostly), but definitely anyone in the TNG era.

I’m really excited to see where ALL the shows are going but the 24th century shows the most with LDS, PIC and PRO since they are all the closest to each other but also because they are all post-Nemesis shows that can dive in to the large TNG era mythology in general. We’re talking 21 seasons and 4 movies so there is just SO MUCH to mine in general and why so many fans wanted a post-Nemesis show to begin with. Now we have 3 of them! There is so many events, characters, history and connectedness you can bring from this era you can’t do in 22nd or 23rd century eras (SNW can connect to TOS obviously but being a prequel not directly like how Prodigy can with Voyager). It’s literally why it’s my favorite era of Trek because the mythology of it is just so vast. And it’s fun to see it being extended now between these three shows.

And I think with both LDS and PIC will go deeper in their second seasons now that they laid out the shows premise and new characters, they can both bring in that mythology more with legacy characters (like Q) and even delve into it’s history more like the Dominion war. I think PIC is going to really do a lot since we know it’s time travel related and make it really twisty thanks to Q. So really looking forward to it all.

I can’t wait to rewatch the whole first season of LDS again when I get there on my rewatch. I’ve seen every episode minus of one them at least 3-4 times already. They are just a lot of fun and really embodies Star Trek I didn’t feel DIS and PIC did, at least not as successfully, but hopefully those shows will get there.

Anyway great interview and August can’t come soon enough now!

Last edited 1 month ago by Tiger2

It’s hard to take McMahan seriously as a showrunner and creative when literally 90% of Lower Decks is pure references and easter eggs to past Trek. Past Trek that had their own visions and actually added something to the world.

That’s an interesting take. In other ways, it’s a bridge to what was.

Whenever we saw, say Excelsior-class ships on TNG and DS9, we were reminded of the TOS movies. Sometimes we need that connection, esp as the Trek universe gets bigger and bigger.

(I like to think of it akin to a Peter David Trek novel. Lots of fan service, but enjoyable to revisit.)

Lower Decks would have shown the Excelsior class and Mariner would have said: “hey look, it’s an Excelsior class, from Kirk and Spock’s time. Sulu was given one.”

It’s just too much. All McMahan seems interested in doing is showing us how much he loves past Trek, instead of giving us a new world to flesh out and fall in love with.

Last edited 30 days ago by 1701