Trailer Analysis: Escape To A Whole New World In The Teaser For ‘Star Trek: Prodigy’

Friday’s Comic-Con@Home Paramount+ Peak Animation panel brought the first footage from the upcoming animated kids series Star Trek: Prodigy. The teaser trailer was brief but offered a good look at the animation style as well as the opportunity to hear the characters for the first time.

Based on official announcements and commentary from the cast and crew, we can get a sense of how the show is being set up, as most if not all of this footage appears to come from the pilot episode. The following analysis also includes some educated speculation and contains potential spoilers.

Dreaming of escape

Star Trek: Prodigy begins on a “bleak mining planet,” which we assume is controlled by a new race called the Vau N’Akat. The series will be set in the Delta Quadrant so (presumably) this mining planet is also in the Delta Quadrant. According to Kate Mulgrew, the setup for the show finds a group of kids “incarcerated” on “an obscure planet in an uncharted part of the galaxy.” It’s not known what they are mining on this planet but from the crystalline structures, dilithium is a good bet.

The trailer opens with Dal (Brett Gray), who has been described as the central character in Prodigy. We see Dal along with two very large people toiling away on this mining planet.

The planet is controlled by an unnamed character, who is the father of Gwyn (more on her later). It is likely her father’s voice at the start of the trailer menacingly saying, “No one shall escape.” We can also see aggressive guard robots keeping an eye on Dal and the other prison laborers.

As the shot focuses on Dal, he can be heard saying, “I’m getting out of here, to a better life.”

We can also see more shots of the mining operation on this harsh planet.

And we can see that there is a shield around the mining operation, a bit like the one at Star Trek’s most famous prison, Rura Penthe.

Saving each other

Star Trek: Prodigy will “follow a motley crew of young aliens who must figure out how to work together while navigating a greater galaxy, in search for a better future.” In the middle part of the teaser trailer, we meet the five other aliens who will join Dal and his plan to escape the mining planet.

Zero (Angus Imrie), a Medusan—a genderless, energy-based lifeform in a special suit—telling Dal, “You’re the only one who still thinks he can [escape].”

Rok-Tahk (Rylee Alazraqui)—a Brikarian—asks, “What will happen if they catch us?”

Rok-Tahk’s fearful comment is cut with a shot of the guard robots chasing after someone or something.

Jankom Pog (Jason Mantzoukas)—a Tellarite—says with mirth, “Like it or not, you’re stuck with me.”

Murf (Dee Bradley Baker)—an “indestructible blob” and a “sidekick” to Rok-Tahk—squeals in delight.

Gwyn (Ella Purnell)—a 17-year-old Vau N’Akat and daughter of the man who controls the mining planet—tells Dal, “I tried to save you.”

Dal responds, “And now we can save each other.”

Their ticket out

The main setting of Prodigy is a Starfleet ship which the kids commandeer. This ship is found crashed on the mining planet, and the rest of the trailer shows parts of the discovery and escape.

Dal looks up in awe—presumably at the ship—with Rok-Tahk behind him.

We get a glimpse of the ship as we hear Gwyn say, “What is all of this?”

The classic Star Trek theme is heard while Dal looks on with astonishment as the Starfleet ship powers up… he then looks out the window/viewscreen.

We pan back to see the crashed Starfleet ship named USS Protostar. The ship’s designation is NX-76884, with the “NX” indicating it is an experimental ship, possibly explaining why it is in the Delta Quadrant just a few years after the end Star Trek: Voyager. Dal can be heard describing the ship as “our ticket out of here.”

Dal rides a lift through the center of the ship

The USS Protostar blasts free of the rubble and escapes the planet.

A message from Janeway

The official description of the show also notes: “These six young outcasts know nothing about the ship they have commandeered.” To help them understand the ship—and the ways of Starfleet—they will have an “Emergency Training Hologram” as their guide, in the form of Captain Kathryn Janeway.

We don’t see hologram Janeway in this teaser, but at the end of the trailer we now hear her (voiced by Kate Mulgrew), saying, “We’ve only just begun.”

The trailer ends on a lighter note with Dal—who will be working closely with, and be trained by hologram Janeway—on the bridge saying, “There are a lot more stars than I thought.”

It’s all in the cards

In addition to the shots and dialogue in the trailer, there are a series of title cards that also tell the story…

A promising start

This teaser trailer definitely teases the show, giving us a good idea of how it will look plus a lot of hints about the premise and a sense of the tone, but there is much more to learn. We can probably expect a more extensive trailer for before the show launches, quite possibly on Star Trek Day, September 8th. That next update will likely also give us a firm release date, but sometime around October 2021 (when the second season of Star Trek: Lower Decks wraps up) is a good bet.

Keep up with all the news and analysis for Star Trek: Prodigy.

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Aren’t the two “very large people” just a lot closer to the “camera”?

I was thinking that too. Still, the trailer looks promising.

Yeah, but the concept of perspective was just developed around 1415. That is still very young in the history of art and still confusing for some people.

No, check out the second shot of the same people pushing the same thing from a different angle. They’re all standing in a row, and the barely-visible person in the middle is definitely much smaller.

Also, if you blow up the first picture to full-size you can see the person on the right is standing behind the person in the middle (based on the feet).

So maybe he is from the species as Herr Tur Tur. Now that would be a deep cut to good children’s stories. I would love the Hegeman Brothers to know Jim Knopf.

Maybe it’s because I’m looking on my phone in bright sunlight by the pool, but I can only see two people in the second picture, and I’m not seeing what you’re saying about the feet in the first picture.

Tap on each pic to get a larger version and zoom in. Both are easy to miss if you aren’t looking carefully.

The feet in the first one are at the bottom-right. (Basically where you’d expect for the guy on the right.)

You can just barely see Dal’s helmet and pack in the second picture. On a small device he probably looks like a knob sticking out of the bar they’re pushing. (Which just reinforces how tiny he is compared to the two people on his sides.)

Ah, I can see that now on my computer at home. Couldn’t make it out on my phone at all, even enlarged. Thanks! I stand corrected.

It’s sort of Star Trek Beyond: The Series, isn’t it? Not that that’s a bad thing.

“Two very large people“?


I guess you folks are unaware of forced perspective. :)

Blow up the first two pics to full size. They’re all standing about the same distance from the camera in the first shot. In fact, the one on the right has their feet planted slightly behind Dal.

And in the second shot Dal is so short comparatively that you can barely see his head behind the bar, whereas the one on the left standing behind Dal (from that angle) still looks huge comparatively.

Curious about the Prodigy type that has a sideways command symbol. That was part of Red Squad logo as well. Maybe just coincidence.

I have a theory that this ship is one of the long-range deep space ships that Starfleet sent out looking for Voyager. The Tellarite, the Medusan, and the Brikar will be the descendants of the original crew.

That would be awesome!!!
I am actually looking forward to this series!

This idea is, I think, supported by the fact that (as I think I remember) holo-Janeway has her hair up in a bun, the way Mulgrew did in the first couple of seasons. If Starfleet wanted to put a holo-Janeway on a ship they sent out, they would likely use the last image they had of real Janeway.

I dunno about that. The fact is that Janeway was just some rando captain until she got back from the DQ, and then she became all that for getting her crew home. So no, I don’t think that’s the logic

That would be an interesting tie in to Voyager indeed!

I’m rather hoping that the ship is a slipstream prototype, designed to withstand the stresses of the slipstream drive tech that Voyager brought home.

In the litverse, the 2380s slipstream prototypes were very streamlined, and this ship has a bit of that look.

It would make sense to have Janeway as the emergency holograms on a prototype that uses technology she brought back from the Delta Quadrant.

Here’s the Eaglemoss model of the Aventine, one of the early slipstream ships in the novels for comparison.

If they have robots that are sophisticated enough to work as guards, why do they use PEOPLE for mining in the first place?

From what’s been talked about in previous interviews, etc. it seems to be a prison labor camp of sorts.

A labor camp that takes teenagers sounds barbaric, but I guess some cultures are…

Just driving home the point that this definitely doesn’t take place within the Federation.

Jankom Pog looks so much like a Talaxian…

I am very excited to show this to my sons.

I have a feeling that the start of the show may not take place in the Delta quadrant. These aliens such as Medusan and Tellarites would not be found there. Maybe it’s in the Alpha quadrant, they find the lost experimental ship, and get somehow relocated to the Delta quadrant either by accident or by design.
Of course, that’s total speculation.
If it does start in the Delta quadrant, I’d be interested to know how the species native to the Alpha quadrant got there.

Have to say REALLY looking forward to this show now! Love the fact it’s back in the Delta quadrant and will expand on Voyager canon again. And the images just look so beautiful! Can’t wait!

I’m really excited to see this one too.

Just wishing our (now) teens were a few years younger. I suspect they’ll watch it with my anyways.

It will be the best of the new Star Treks.

God I hope not lol

Why would anyone hope for it not to be? That’s pretty odd.

‘Cuz it’s a kiddie show, homeboy.