Ever since it was announced last month that John de Lanice was returning to reprise his iconic role as Q in Star Trek: Picard the actor has been dropping hints for what’s next on the series headed by Sir Patrick Stewart. In the latest updates, de Lancie appears to reveal a surprising character return.
[SPOILER] is back?
John de Lancie continues to bring up his work on Star Trek: Picard for his Cameo videos. In past updates, he has let us know that Q was “annoying the s#!t out of Picard” in season two and he even revealed they are shooting season two and season three back-to-back. He has spoken extensively about doing scenes with Patrick Stewart and said he would be working with other members of the Picard cast. In his latest update he mentions working with two TNG cast members who were also part of Picard season one:
I am back into the Star Trek Universe. I am doing Picard right now with – of all people – Mr. Picard. So, that’s been great fun. It’s been great fun to see Patrick, to see Brent [Spiner], and to see Jonathan [Frakes]. I am going to be working with Jonathan coming up here in a couple of weeks. So, it’s great fun.
Last year Jonathan Frakes told TrekMovie he expected to be returning to direct in season two and de Lancie has previously mentioned he was going to be working with Frakes as a director. As for Brent Spiner, Paramount+ previously confirmed the actor would be returning for season two. It has been presumed Spiner would be reprising his season one role as Dr. Altan Inigo Soong. However, in another Cameo video, de Lancie said something surprising:
I am on the next season of Picard. And Sir Patrick and I have had a whole bunch of scenes, which we thoroughly enjoyed working with each other. I have got one coming up with Data on this coming Tuesday. So yeah, we are moving along.
Having a scene with Soong and Q would not be that surprising, but a scene with Q and Data is noteworthy. Brent Spiner’s Data (or more specifically the remnant of Data that existed in his brother B-4) was literally laid to rest in the season one finale. Co-showrunner Akiva Goldsman has previously said that the character of Inigo Soong was created to give Spiner a platform to stay with the show after this death of Data. Spiner had also indicated he had finally put the iconic android role behind him.
It’s possible that de Lancie misspoke, however, it is possible we could see Data again, but not necessarily the same Data that died at the end of season one. The Picard teaser trailer released last month telegraphed that the season will deal with time travel and possibly even alternate timelines. Having god-like powers to travel time and space would allow for Q to pop in anywhere and anytime, including where Data (or some version of Data) is still fully operational.
Playing Q again is a snap, but still learning more
Counting his latest in Star Trek: Lower Decks, John de Lancie had appeared in 13 total Star Trek episodes before Picard, which will add six to his resume spread across two seasons. In another Cameo, the actor says that he is still learning more about the character:
I started shooting not too long ago and it’s really fun to be back in the Star Trek universe. It’s a different Q this time. A little different. I think that the audience will understand and appreciate it and I am looking forward to every time a new script comes in, I learn a little bit more about my character, as it were.
While he has talked about how the role is different this time, de Lancie said it was easy to return to the role he first played in 1987:
Patrick was delighted to see me the first couple of days. But because my character is wont to be REALLY annoying, he began saying, “How long are you going to be on the show?” So you have that to look forward to and so do I. I have found that it is really fun actually to be back. And it was not difficult to climb into those shoes again. I did go around the house – as my kids would explain to me – doing this [Q’s trademark snap] saying, “pick that up, let’s go, we’re late!” So all of that hasn’t really changed for me, so it was very easy.
ICYMI – Season two teaser
Star Trek: Picard season 2 will arrive in 2022. Here again, is the teaser released on First Contact Day.
Find more news and analysis on Star Trek: Picard.
Bringing back Data through Q’s omnipotence seems like a pretty good idea. Data didn’t want to live as a shadow in that program and he also wanted to experience death. Q snapping his fingers to bring him back would solve both issues. That would change Data’s double death in NEM and PIC S1 a lot. While still emotionally effective, it would become just like Spock’s death in TWOK… and while I can live with Data’s demise, I’d definitely prefer having him back in full glory…
They spent the whole first season passing the torch to Soji Asha. Data’s story is over.
I seriously doubt Q is going to be used to retcon the fist season of Picard away.
Hmm, but one issue there is that Sahja was ultimately as compelling as drying paint.
You guys don’t have to pee in everyone’s froot loops just because you have access to the internet.
And how is that different from Data?
Not with Chabon still in the writer’s room, anyway. Which is why I’m keeping my expectations for S2 very, very low.
Thanks for the update.
snapping his fingers and reverse that stupid “picard is now an android”-plot !
Yes, please. The best idea of all.
I’m sorta hoping for that, too. In fact, there was really no need for them to even use that whatever syndrome he had. In case they missed it, a number of the things shown in that future never came to pass. It’s funny… Secret Hideout writers seem to like to show how much they have paid attention to Trek past but often in doing so they also show how much they do NOT pay attention to Trek past.
Yes, I truly hope Q will make Picard human again. The whole storyline of Picard becoming an “android/robot/etc.” is crap and is just pissing on the character and legacy of Picard. Moreover, I would have always imagined that Picard would die with his longtime friends and crew from the TNG to be with him.
While it is possible Q might snap data back to existence I don’t think data will be back for good. Data can be back for flashbacks or Q gags as much at Mr. Spiner allows but ultimately data will remain as atoms floating around the Bassen Rift.
I think Q “snapping his fingers” would be a weak story point that isn’t much better than claiming the whole thing was just a dream. Now we have Soji and Soong to explore, which could also give us more of Data’s backstory. Instead of Data coming back, I’d rather have Seela return as a major villain.
Thinking that it’s pretty likely that he just meant Brent Spiner’s Soong character? Bringing back Data seems like a stretch after that finale that they gave him in S1…
That finale makes it even more likely. If S2 is supposed to be a course correction for the show after the harsh criticism they received for S1, it’s more than likely they want to erase that “mistake”… While Data’s death was actually quite popular on this site, it was met with lots of negativity elsewhere. They might just erase that (and many other things) using Q.Hopefully Q will also silence that cuzzing Admiral in an absurd Mudd / Stella like fashion…
Wonder if de Lancie was referring to a new actor playing “Data”. A few months ago, Brent Spinner was saying something about the possibility of a STNG reboot.
That really sounds like Picard & Co going back in time, maybe landing in the Kelvin timeline and introducing a new Crew.
That will be fascinating. A positive from Kurtzman shows have been the casting. I am cool with pretty much all of the actors selected on Discovery, Picard, Lower Decks, also Pike, Spock, Number One for SNW…also, the Kelvin cast, I like them all.
My apologies, Spiner, not Spinner! :P
Maybe they’ll pull a Trials and Tibbleations – interacting with some old, touched-upped Data footage with Spiner providing some new dialogue.
Most likely. But there’s time travel… so there’s a chance. But he’s probably been referring to Spiner as Data for decades and it just kinda sticks.
I thought you guys were going to report the dog is coming back.
You mad me laugh!
Jeez. And here I thought Frakes was the one they need to worry about when it comes to dropping information.
You know I think the older actors don’t really care about spoiling things too much as the more recent generation do. They come from a different time and they might be feeling they have nothing to lose or nothing as much to lose a newer actor who is just starting in the business.
Yeah. If Q’s character is integral to the plot of the next two seasons, I doubt JdL is very worried about getting booted off for loose lips, so long as he’s not outright breaking his NDA.
I don’t think he dropped anything really spoiler-y. Everything he said was already known.
De Lancie seems to be the TV version of Simon Pegg. Ask him if he likes hot dogs and he talks and talks and talks and talks….
I still think Kate Mulgrew as Janeway might pop in for 1 or 2 episodes, i know a lot of you will say she wont because she’s doing Progidy, but Alex Kurtsman has contacted her about coming back,if De Lancie has been in Lower Decks and Picard and if Jeri Ryan is in Picard Kate will as well, i have noticed she has got back in shape again, so fingers crossed.
It seems like they included Riker in Lowet Decks because Frakes was conveniently available. I wouldn’t rule out a Janeway cameo. I wouldn’t be surprised if Jeri Ryan has a “no Mulgrew” clause in her contract though ;-)
My understanding is that they settled that beef years ago.
And that was never really personal with Ryan anyway, was it? That was Mulgrew upset with Berman and Braga for bringing in Ryan in a catsuit to sex-up the show.
Doesn’t Lower Decks take many months to produce because of the animation? They would have had to know well ahead of time that Frakes would be available.
The animation takes a long time to produce. But the voice-overs can probably be recorded reasonably fast. Also, you can record each actor separately and out of order which should make scheduling much easier than for a live-action show.
And typically, they are. Voice recordings are done well before any character’s animation cell is even drawn. This also gives the actors a chance to riff a little if they want. And most of the time the actors record their lines solo. Although they will get multiple actors in the recording booth from time to time.
Well it’s not like he didn’t have some practice playing Q by doing Discord’s voice for several years on My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic. The character was based on Q and they were ecstatic to have DeLancie actually do the voice.
Welcome to the afterlife, Jean-Luc. You’re dead.
Wait, what? You’re an android now? Oh, mon capitaine, how delightfully amusing. Now let’s see what we can do about that.
There. You’re an imperfect, lumpen human being again.
You and I have a mission to complete Jean-Luc. My good friend Kathy did some serious damage to the timeline by bringing that ship of hers home early and it’s up to us to fix the changes. And we can bring as many of your little friends along as we want. Data? Riker? How about Micro Brain?
So we all get to spend a little time together… eternity!
Hopefully we can avoid contact with that dreadful M Continuum – one of their number currently resides in the 31st century on a thousand year old starship. We’ll steer clear of that – don’t want to ignite another war between the Q and the M.
*snaps before Picard has chance to put in his teeth*
Bring on season 2!
So entirely negate season 1 and turn Picard into TNG 2.0? No thanks.
Yes thanks! Trek doesn’t need that attempt at “adult drama”… They should turn this into TNG Season 8…
Agreed. They should follow the example from the DS9 doc and genuinely write a sequel to TNG, not essentially provide a post credits scene for Nemesis.
We already had seven seasons of TNG. We don’t need more of the same.
And they were running on fumes creatively for TNG in Season 7 (“Whose family member will visit next? Tune in next week on Star Trek: The Next Generation!”), followed by three mediocre movies at best and one great movie.
Well, assuming my theory above is correct, Janeway was responsible for a heinous breach of the temporal prime directive. It should have taken Voyager some 20 odd years to get home and Seven of Nine should be dead and not a brutal killer.
Season 1 should not have happened – what if Seven killed someone who cured irumodic syndrome? Or that silicone disease that the Rikerses son died of?
Even Q knows that Seven of Nine must be stopped and season 1 was Janeway’s fault.
Don’t mess with the timeline and don’t provoke the Borg are 2 of Q’s most prolific lessons.
Having Q back and Terry Matalas as showrunner for a time wimey storyline is enough to get me intrigued and over my “meh” feeling about this series.
Different viewers will have different responses. That we seem to be shaping up for two seasons of Q abusing his pet Jean Luc is filling me with apprehension…..
I love the enthusiasm De Lancie has for the role. Obviously it is very important to him. However I think the writers/producers need to be very careful while writing the role of Q. The entertainment industry is not as forgiving these days as it was in the 80’s when the character was first created.
It just feels like a roundabout that nobody seems able to step off now.
I’m getting the vibe that Picard season 2 will be like the episode of Voyager where 7 of 9 visited different timelines to catch the future captain sabotaging Voyager. Was it the Relativity? Maybe they will visit old TNG episodes similar like they intercut the DS9 episodes with TOS?
Sadly the fan theories such as yours are always better than the stories we end up getting!
Wesley is coming back too…
he’ll be calling out Shatner returning as Kirk in his next Cameo
First season was Trash. Worse 1st season in any Trek show. Even TNG season 1 is better than Picard. Don’t know what the hell they were thinking !
Was so looking forward to this series, So disappointed with the result.
As someone who likes most of TNG Season 1, even loves some of the better episodes, this isn’t very difficult. Yeah, TNG S1 had its stinkers (Code of Honor, Angel One), but there are some episodes that I just love to death (Farpoint, 11001001, Skin of Evil, The Last Outpost, We’ll Always Have Paris, Conspiracy, The Neutral Zone)…
S1 of PIC was of course way below all of that although my quibbles are mainly with the forcefully adultified execution than the actual plots. The plots could have been campy good old Star Trek. Especially the two-part finale with those space orchids, the skimpy android outfits and the tentacled AI monsters from another dimension… all of that was so cool…
But Icheb’s grizzly demise, that cuzzing Admiral, all the drinking and smoking, head chopping, mass suicides and murders…that just didn’t fit this universe! This is where my troubles are…
All of that felt like the second season of The Shannara Chronicles. Season 1 was pretty good campy fantasy with a nice twist (and TMP shown at the end :-)) And then they decided to turn it into a “contemporary” blood bath in Season 2 just because they had moved channel… Yeah, cool, we can show whatever we want now… so let’s do it, whether it fits the pre-established world or not…
This just felt wrong.. on Shannara and on PIC…
Forgot to mention Where No One Has Gone Before as my absolute S1 favourite :-)
as usual it maybe another ‘trek’ show that needs time to bed in.
i didnt watch Picard until recently about 4 months ago (i dont stream) and was abit baffled on all the negativity id read since it showed a year or so ago. it dosnt feel like star trek, too woke, ridiculous nuke the fridge ending etc but to me it felt almost like a natural progression from Nemesis (and AGT) and as Patrick Stewart had said in interviews it was going to to be to TNG what ‘Logan’ was to XMen.. in fact it felt like the first proper Trek since Nemesis or maybe ST09 (as Spock/Nero were from the primeverse.. i know Disco is too but it never really felt like it to me) and in Trek movie terms (as this was more like a 10 hour movie sequel to Nemesis) it was pretty much The Search for Data to Nemesis’ Wrath of Shinzon (even had a similar scene of Picard begging an admiral for a ship to help his fallen friend – then plays out similar to had Kirk not been able to steal the enterprise and had to charter a spaceflight – and throughout had a renegade vibe similar to STIII) and obviously had multiple references to ST09, as well as Blade Runner, Guardians, Force Awakens (which itself was influenced by ST09), and the harder R rated Logan/Game of Thrones violence/gore(but then anyone remember a little TNG episode called Conspiracy?)
ok the final 2 eps were abit of a let down and Picards death/rebirth was jarring (until you remember that its Star Trek and stuff like that often happens) but Picard/Data in the Zathura house was one of Treks great moments. and USS Copy/Paste didnt bother me (did anyone seriously expect Riker to turn up in command of the Enterprise E or F along with a rag tag Eagle Moss fleet of past Star Trek ships?)
overall it was just fun to see the Picard era back 20years later in a kind of TNG Awakens..in fact the only thing that really bugged me was the way Countdown was de-canond
i didnt watch Picard until recently about 4 months ago (dont stream) and was abit baffled on all the negativity id read since it showed a year or so ago. it dosnt feel like star trek, too woke, ridiculous ending etc but to me it felt almost like a natural progression from Nemesis (and AGT) and as Patrick Stewart had said in interviews it was going to to be to TNG what Logan was to XMen.. in fact it felt like the first proper Trek since Nemesis or maybe ST09 (as Spock Nero were from the primeverse.. i know Disco is too but it never really felt like it to me) and in Trek movie terms (as this was more like a 10 hour movie sequel to Nemesis) it was pretty much The Search for Data to Nemesis Wrath of Shinzon (even had a similar scene of Picard begging an admiral for a ship to help his fallen friend..then plays out similar to had Kirk not been able to steal the enterprise and had to charter a spaceflight. and throughout had a renegade vibe similar to STIII) and obviously had multiple references to ST09, as well as Blade Runner, Guardians, Force Awakens (which itself was influenced by ST09), and the harder R rated Logan/Game of Thrones violence/gore(but then anyone remember a little TNG episode called Conspiracy?)
ok the final 2 eps were abit of a let down and Picards death&rebirth was jarring (until you remember that its Star Trek and stuff like that often happens) but Picard&Data in the Zathura house was one of Treks great moments. and USS Copy Paste didnt bother me (did anyone seriously expect Riker to turn up in command of the Enterprise E or F along with a rag tag Eagle Moss fleet of past Star Trek ships?)
overall it was just fun to see the Picard era back 20years later in a kind of TNG Awakens..in fact the only thing that really bugged me was the way Countdown was decanond
apologies for double post
Killing off Data without Picard telling him his daughter existed just outside was a bit stomach turning after Lal.
It was strange to not even see a meeting. The parental drive should have overrode the desire to die, which is easily obvious in Soong characters.
The Picard-is-an-android twist is also very off-putting. Unless and until we get to the point of needing to deal with the ethics of how to handle uploaded consciousness after biological death in the real world, this scenario just makes Patrick Stewart’s own mortality that much more top of mind.
Both plot points were jarring to the escapism of the science fiction storyline to the point of being beyond comprehension as to why.
I’m hoping season two answers the why.
In order for data to have a parental drive it would have had to be programmed into the operating system.
You just went full-on Pulaski on Data :-)
I think her seeing data as little more than a mobile ships computer is why I kinda liked her character.
Golem Picard is an excellent continuation of so many plots in the past, starting with his artificial heart, his short Borg career as Locutus, his quibbles with mortality in GEN, his friendship to Data, his second life in The Inner Light etc… I don’t see how this doesn’t fit his character arc. Even at this point, it is a perfect conclusion. And now that Q comes in, challenging the morality and philosophy behind it, I see that as a potential masterpiece decision. So much better than falling off a bridge on Veridian IV…
It was also perfectly teased by the opening titles, with the shards reassembling to form Picard’s head.
Well said, Garth Lorca. To your list, I’d add Picard’s philosophical ruminations in “Where Silence Has Lease.”
and what happened with ira graves….
Data mentioned Soji, so he obviously knew she existed. He also knew that Picard would be there for her, so she wouldn’t need him. As Picard said, sacrificing himself in Nemesis was the most human thing Data ever did. Data didn’t want to negate that by being brought back from the dead.
Maybe Q can fix data’s zipper on his uniform from the season finale?
Give me more Laris and Zhaban dammit.
So..time travel element…big surprise.