The second episode for the second season of Star Trek: Lower Decks was steeped in franchise lore. We have already recapped and reviewed the season two debut “Kayshon, His Eyes Open,” and discussed it on the All Access Star Trek podcast. With this episode, there are simply too many Easter Eggs and references to count once you get into all the subtle visual elements, so we aren’t going to be fully comprehensive. But we are going to try to cover all the big ones. In some cases the references are clear, with others it may just be our Trek interpretations; art is in the eye of the beholder.
Obviously… SPOILERS ahead.
LDS 202, full of references
The biggest reference in this episode is exemplified by the title “Kayshon, His Eyes Open.” It introduced the new character Lt. Kayshon (Carl Tart), the new security officer on the USS Cerritos. Kayshon is a Tamarian – the race introduced in the classic Star Trek: The Next Generation episode “Darmok” who speak entirely through metaphors. Kayshon is the first Tamarian to join Starfleet and is able to communicate (with some help from the Universal Translator) with the crew, however, at times he falls back into his native metaphor instincts, including some we heard on TNG such as “Darmok and Jalad on the ocean.” Ensign Jet Manhaver also showed some understanding of Tamarian, including referencing the “Beast at Tanagra.”
Time on the D
One of the themes of this episode was exploring the nature and mission of Starfleet. The crew of the USS Titan admired Captain Riker, yet they mocked his seven years on the USS Enterprise-D, noting the five daycare centers (“Rascals“) and string quartets (Sarek“). Brad defending the ship noting how the ship went to different dimensions (“Where No One Has Gone Before“), fought the Borg (“Best of Both Worlds“), and “they insurrected” (Star Trek: Insurrection) [NITPICK: Technically that was the Enterprise-E]. Later when the Titan crew resigns to go out in a blaze of glory the first officer says, “This is what we signed up for, to boldly go” referencing the mission statement of the USS Enterprise (and Star Trek in general). Boimler reminds “boldly going” is about exploration and peaceful diplomacy. He also defends Riker on “the D” including jamming on the trombone (“11001001“), catching love disease (“The Naked Now“), acting in plays (“Frame of Mind“), and meeting his transporter clone Thomas (“Second Chances“). As Riker is saying goodbye to Brad Boimler, he admits “damn I miss that ship” when referring to his time exploring on the Enterprise-D.
Let’s hear it for the Boimlers!
One of the big questions before season two was how would the show get Brad Boimler back on the USS Cerritos from the USS Titan, to rejoin the rest of the main characters. Lower Decks dipped into TNG lore once again for the solution, specifically the aforementioned episode “Second Chances.” As Boimler and the USS Titan away team were trying to escape Pakled-occupied Karzill IV, Brad remembered a solution to beaming through a distortion field from Captain Riker’s past. It worked to save the crew but it also created the same byproduct, a transporter clone duplicate, just like Thomas Riker. And just like the other Riker, the two Boimlers already show differences with the one staying on the Titan retaining the rank of lieutenant and now going by “William” Boimler, and also seeming more gregarious and fitting in with the vibe on the Titan.
Speaking of Captain Riker, the version of him on Lower Decks continues to lean into his more jazzy side. In this episode, he continues to pepper his commands with jazz musical terms including and “That’s a wrap” and “Give me warp in factor of five, six, seven.” His trombone is on display in his ready (above) and after Brad Boimler leaves, he has some Romulan ale with William Boimler, asking the computer to play “Night Bird” a Jazz tune that Riker revealed to have trouble with the solo part (revealed in “Second Chances”). The Titan’s shuttles are also named for famous Jazz musicians including Coltrane, Gillespie, and Monk.
Joining the collection
The main plot for the episode involved the Cerritos assigned to help catalog the inventory of a deceased “Collector” named Kerner Hauze. The notion of a collector was introduced in the TNG episode “The Most Toys,” which introduced a collector named Kivas Fajo who kidnapped Data to add to his collection. Ransom asks if Hauze was the one that tried to collect Data, to which Captain Freeman responds “They all tried to collect Data.” Later, Collector’s Guild chairman Siggi notes how rare “cyborg” Rutherford is and tries to coax him to join his collection, giving him his card adding he has a “top-notch menagerie” which could also be a wink to the TOS episode “The Menagerie” which featured a collection of different aliens being held on Talos IV.
Speaking of the Kerner Hauze collection, as noted before, there are simply too many visual gags throughout the galleries to mention. Almost every single object has some reference to Star Trek, like the box of Chateau Picard wine seen in the moment above. So, we are just going to list off some of our favorite highlights from the collection.
The second gallery they entered full of fossils included a giant skeleton hanging from the ceiling in a classic TOS science uniform, which certainly seems to be the bones of Spock Two, a giant clone of Spock from the Star Trek: The Animated Series episode “The Infinite Vulcan.”
Beverly’s sex candle
Yes, the candle. You know, the “dinnae light that candle!” candle containing the ghost of Beverly Crusher’s grandmother’s ex-lover who has been haunting her family for generations in the TNG episode “Sub Rosa“? Yes, that candle! It can be seen in the background of the image below.
A Vulcan lirpa
We see it in the background a few times, but we actually get to see a Vulcan lirpa in action when Mariner grabs one to defend herself. We first saw this Vulcan weapon in the TOS episode “Amok Time” (yes, the one with THAT fight music). Other weapons displayed in the collection include an Andorian Ice Cutter, Jem’Hadar Kar’takin, and a Klingon Bat’leth and Mek’leth.
For a while, the ensigns were trapped in a cage in the fossil room with some familiar bones, including the skeleton of Excalbian and the Excalbian Abraham Lincoln from the TOS episode “The Savage Curtain.”
The Kataan probe
Definitely a fan-favorite episode, TNG’s “The Inner Light” featured this probe from the Kataan civilization, which took over Captain Picard’s brain, having him live out an entire life in the span of about 30 minutes. You can’t get a great glimpse of the probe in the collection room, but there’s no question that’s it. The Kataan Probe from TNG’s “The Inner Light” is seen hanging in the background, on the left of the image below.
Definitely NOT a fan favorite (but loved by some of us here at TrekMovie!), TNG’s seventh season episode “Masks” featured some hilarious moments between Picard and Data wearing masks as Data channeled the god of a long-dead civilization that was attempting to take over the Enterprise. Masaka is waking!
So. Many. More. Eggs
There are too many eggs as is sensible for us to mention here, which is why we’ve given you the highlights above. We do love this wide shot of the collection room, so here are just a few of our favorites visible in the below image:
- The Kurlan Naiskos: a very special piece of pottery given to Picard by Professor Galen in TNG’s “The Chase” and also briefly seen in Star Trek: Generations.
- A Betazoid gift box: Remember that silver box with a face in it (played by Armin Shimerman!) that was beamed aboard the Enterprise-D to let Dianna Troi know about her upcoming arranged marriage? It’s here!
- A photon torpedo casing (possibly with Ira Graves inside): In the TNG episode “The Schizoid Man,” Dr. Ira Graves, Data’s self-appointed “grandfather,” is placed in a torpedo casket and beamed into space after his death.
- A Horta egg: One of the “silicon nodules” discovered to be eggs of the Horta in TOS’s “Devil In The Dark.”
- A Salt Vampire: One of the M-113 creatures from the TOS episode “The Man Trap.”
More from the collection
Of course, Kerner Hauze collected more than moments from Star Trek history. There are some other examples from outside of Star Trek, both real and fictional. Here are some highlights.
The (other) Collector
While inspired by Kivas Fajo, the design of the first gallery in particular of his ship was reminiscent of the “The Collector” from the MCU, also known as Taneleer Tivan.
We love a little nod to our friends at NASA. You can tell this is specifically the Mars Curiosity Rover due to the zig-zag pattern on the grousers (wheel treads) and the size of the payload on the rover arm (which is smaller on Curiosity than on Perseverance).
What were your favorite references?
As noted, we didn’t bother cataloging it all because there simply was too much, but what were some of your favorite references and Easter eggs? Let us know in the comments below.
New episodes of Star Trek: Lower Decks premiere on Thursdays on Paramount+ in the U.S. and on CTV Sci-Fi Channel in Canada, where it’s also available to stream on Crave. It is available on Amazon Prime Video internationally on Fridays. It will debut in Latin America on Paramount+ in September.
Keep up with all the news and reviews from the new Star Trek Universe on TV at TrekMovie.com.