In addition to releasing a new trailer for the second season of StarTrek: Lower Decks, Paramount+ also brought the cast and executive producer to Comic-Con@Home for a fun panel. We have all the news and reveals.
After the Star Trek: Prodigy team was done, Lower Decks star Jerry O’Connell (Ransom) continued his moderating duties. He was joined by Lower Decks creator Mike McMahan along with voice cast members Tawny Newsome (Mariner), Jack Quaid (Boimler), and Eugene Cordero (Rutherford).
Bigger and funnier
Mike McMahan gave a status update on the second season (which arrives on August 12), and explained how it is different from the first:
Season two is funnier, bigger, but the same length… It’s a blast. We’re putting the final audio polishes, final special effects polishes, fixing the animation… It’s just a blast. We kind of crescendoed at the end of season one in a really cool way and we left a lot of bills to pay with characters and what was going on in the world. And we just keep at it. There is a great mix of serious Trek and silly Trek…
You’ll see some familiar faces. You’ll see a lot of new stuff. The Cerritos goes through some real rigamarole. I am so excited for August. We have been living with this for so long and I just can’t wait to share it with everyone. If you love Star Trek, you are going to have ten new Star Trek episodes that you don’t see coming, no matter how hard you extrapolate what we did, and I think you are going to love it.
A surprising new security officer
After Shaxs sacrificed himself in the season one finale, the USS Cerritos was left without a security officer. In a TrekMovie interview earlier this year, Mike McMahan revealed the new security officer was “a species we’ve seen before, but not one who we’ve seen in Starfleet before.” With the trailer and images released today, we learned that character is a Tamarian named Kayshon, voiced by Carl Tart. He presumably will be introduced in the season two episode “Kayshon, His Eyes Open.”
Also known as The Children of Tama, Tamarians first appeared in the classic Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Darmok” which showed the difficult first contact with this race that communicates through metaphors. During Friday’s panel, Mike talked about the introduction of the character:
The challenge of having a Tamarian security officer where he kind of can speak English but mostly is speaking in memes and metaphor is truly fun to write…
More Pakleds… and more Titan
The season one finale also featured a confrontation with the Pakleds, an underestimated species from The Next Generation that had come back in a big and dangerous way. McMahan revealed the Pakleds—seen in the trailer—are now an important part of the series:
Season two… the Pakleds we sort of treated them like the Klingons were in TOS and the Romulans were in TNG. Kind of a “Big Bad,” a force that is out there and needs to be dealt with. But remember, the Cerritos isn’t necessarily in charge of the big missions. Every once in a while – because they did encounter the Pakleds first – they do get involved with some. But you will see the Titan having to deal with more Pakled stuff. Because the Titan is a little bit more equipped and Riker kicks a little bit more butt.
Paris, evil Combs, and more cameos to come
Lower Decks is already known for fun cameos from Star Trek vets and season two will continue that tradition. Mike pointed out a couple you may have spotted in the new trailer, but also promised more:
Did you hear Jeffery Combs as the evil computer? We got evil Combs! Robert Duncan McNeill showing up. We got Tom Paris in this year. We got some other folks that didn’t slip in there [to the trailer].
It’s all about those character moments
While Lower Decks is full of nods and cameos that get all the attention, Mike McMahan used a musical metaphor to reveal what he sees as the heart of the show:
Yeah, everybody loves when the Titan shows up, it’s an amazing moment. But the stuff I really like is in the bar afterward, where Mariner just hanging out with Riker and Troi. And Ransom is asking Troi if she has any girlfriends he can meet. It’s that down beat stuff. It’s that down beat stuff where our show really lives.
Things with Captain Mom get complicated
Tawny Newsome talked about how a new dynamic between her character of Beckett Mariner and Mariner’s mother (and USS Cerritos captain) Carol Freeman first introduced in the season one finale continues to evolve in season two:
Yeah mom/captain, that is a tough one. They do end up working together and in season two you are going to see some more of them attempting to work together. It is strange because Mariner defines herself through rebellion. So, when that rebellion is taken away, how do you function?… How do you do that when your mom is the captain and you are on the ship and you start working together? It’s going to get sticky. But yes, they will try to work together but it’s weird and difficult for both of them.
New Starfleet outfits
Newsome also teased that there is at least one new Starfleet uniform in store in season two:
You may see glimpses of slightly different uniforms. It’s so cool to me to see in animated form to see different Starfleet [outfits]. When we did some ADR the other day I was like, “That’s what we look like!” It’s very cool.
A message from Noel
The fourth “Lower Decker,” Noël Wells (Tendi), was not able to make it to the group panel, but she did beam in a video message, saying:
I am so excited for season two. The show keeps getting better. The cast is incredible. The characters – you are going to fall more in love with them, and because of all that we are going to have more chances to see each other in the future.
Watch the full panel
More coverage and analysis from Comic-Con@Home
There is more to come including our analysis of the two trailers.
You can follow all the coverage via TrekMovie’s SDCC sub-category.
Keep up with all the news and reviews from the new Star Trek Universe on TV at TrekMovie.com.