‘Prodigy’ Producers Talk Jellico’s Role And Promise More “Wild” Legacy Star Trek Characters And Races

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On October 27, Star Trek: Prodigy returns with 10 more episodes (which are technically the second half of season 1). At New York Comic Con, the producers and stars of the show gave us a preview.

Jellico is Janeway’s boss

One of the big announcements over the weekend was the return of Ronny Cox to to the franchise as Edward Jellico (now an Admiral, as we learned on Lower Decks), reprising his role from Star Trek: The Next Generation. Executive producer and co-creator Kevin Hageman explained how Jellico fits into the show:

Kevin Hageman: Admiral Jellico, because Admiral Janeway needs to have a foil. She needs a boss who is going to make things hard for her. Who better than Admiral Jellico?

First look at Ronny Cox as Jellico

More legacy characters and species are coming

On Star Trek Day last month, it was revealed that Billy Campbell is also returning from The Next Generation to play Thadiun Okona in the second half of season 1… and Kevin Hageman indicated there are more legacy characters to come.

Kevin Hageman: Also, Outrageous Okona is coming. These are just a look at the future. There’s going to be so many more. Our characters are now venturing closer to into Federation space. And we promise you there are going to be some really wild, fun, legendary characters coming back in Prodigy.

When the moderator noted that the new mid-season trailer also had a brief glimpse of the Borg, co-executive producer and director Ben Hibon jumped in to promise even more familiar species are on the way.

Hibon: The Borg, Romulans, Klingons, we are going to see them all. It’s a gift that keeps on giving for us and the crew. We love these characters, we love their designs and what they represent and how they have been approached in prior shows. We’re just loving iterating on it and respecting them from the base and adding that little Prodigy twist to it.

Borg in mid-season trailer

Mulgrew wants more Janeways

As seen in the trailer, the upcoming episodes will find Kate Mulgrew doing double duty voicing both Hologram Janeway and Admiral Janeway. When asked about this challenge at the panel, the Voyager star made it clear she is ready to take on even more versions of Janeway.

Mulgrew: Approaching a saturation point, is that what you are saying?… No, I want more iterations and more iterations. Alex, can there be more iterations? [Kurtzman replies “As many as you like”] It’s thrilling to play Vice Admiral Janeway and Hologram Janeway. Of course it is. And to know that children are watching it is wonderful.

Mulgrew also talked about how performing with just her voice has offered her more opportunities as an actress.

Mulgrew: When I go into the booth with Kevin and Dan, it’s absolutely liberating. It’s something you really don’t get in live-action, because live-action is by its very nature, is rigorous and demanding and exacting. But you go into the booth with these guys, and Ben at the end and it’s just liberating. So I can do with my voice, certain things that I could never do on a set. And it’s a fabulous feeling as an actor.

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Some answers and more questions for Dal

The trailer also indicated Dal might learn more about his mysterious origins. Voice actor Brett Gray revealed there will be even more to this storyline:

Gray: I can say is going to be epic. And there may be more questions than answers. It’s really awesome to see sort of his growth because Dal hasn’t known who or what he is or what his purpose is since the very beginning of the series. So although he’s learned a lot and been through a lot, it’s only just beginning, really.

Jameela Jamil is hyped for Trek and second half of season 1

Jameela Jamil plays Ensign Asencia, a Trill bridge officer on Admiral Janeway’s ship, the USS Dauntless. She was seen briefly at the end of episode 10 but will feature more prominently in the rest of the season. The actress who voices Wonder Woman in the new animated movie DC League of Super-Pets and currently appears as Titiania in the Disney+ MCU series She-Hulk expressed how being in Star Trek is a role she has always wanted:

Jamil: I can’t believe it. I’ve been watching Star Trek since I was like four years old with my brother. So when the email came in offering me the role, I didn’t ask how much money. I didn’t ask to read a script. I wrote like a screaming “YES” in caps locks. Yeah, I was over the moon and I couldn’t believe it. And you guys [Kevin and Dan Hageman] were with me in the booth every time you would reveal to me which character would be coming onto our show and now I’m absolutely terrified I’m about to reveal something… I’m a massive longtime fan and this is a huge honor. And for this show to be so beautifully written and beautifully animated, as a fan I thank you. Because it means that you’re taking us seriously and you’re taking the next generation who are being brought into this world seriously and giving them the absolute best. I’m really proud to be a part of this show. Thanks for having me.

Later she used some adult language to express her feelings about the upcoming second half of season 1:

Jamil: This has been one of the most fun projects I’ve ever worked on… And you have created also such an environment of love the Star Trek that is so infectious. And we’ve made this with every bit of love for you. And I think, personally, that [the second half of season one] is going to blow your f—ing b—s off.

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Prodigy mid-season trailer

In case you missed it, here again, is the mid-season trailer released at NYCC. [international version at startrek.com]

Prodigy will return on Thursday, Oct. 27 exclusively for Paramount+ subscribers in the U.S., and on Friday, Oct. 28 in Latin America, Australia, Italy and the U.K. Following the premiere, new episodes of the 10-episode-long second half will be available to stream weekly on Thursdays. The series will air later in the year in South Korea, Germany, Italy, France, Austria and Switzerland.

More Star Trek from NYCC

The panel is over but there is more coverage to come, so keep coming back to TrekMovie.com for all the latest from NYCC 2022. See more of our NYCC coverage here.


Keep up with news for the Star Trek Universe at TrekMovie.com.

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Jameela Jamil will be livening up these cons a bit. It’s actually good to see these younger performers getting their hands around Trek and making it their own.

I adore her! She was so brilliant in The Good Place!

I agree, The Good Place was fantastic, and so was she as Tahani! I’m excited to have her on Star Trek as well. 😁👍

Yeah she was and she’s great in She-Hulk too. The best thing about her is that she is so real.

Sounds like fun!

This show sounds like it’s going to get even stronger when it comes back. I’m excited to see where it’s all going, especially as they get closer to Federation space and meet the real Janeway. I don’t think I would’ve thought I would be this excited about a kid’s show.

I love the premise and execution of this show. It’s truly an introduction to STAR TREK through the experience of these characters. For decades, we’ve watched Starfleet seek out new life, and now we see new life discovering Starfleet. The showrunners, writers, production designers, and cast show their devotion to the show and the larger universe. The same goes for LOWER DECKS. Kurtzman’s best quality seems to be in bringing on teams who want so very much to work on TREK. Jameela Jamil is in full Titania mode too, what a great addition.

Hibon: The Borg, Romulans, Klingons, we are going to see them all.

Sigh! Because we didn’t get enough of them in the other shows.

You have to remember, this show is mainly designed for new and/or pre-adolescent viewers who has never seen a Borg, Romulan or Klingon in their life until now. That’s the point, to immerse them in the Star Trek universe and canon as much as possible.

I thought Lower Decks was doing that….

Lower Decks is the completely opposite lol. That’s for people who knows the Star Trek universe inside and out. How is a 10 year old whose never seen Star Trek going to catch a Xon reference or all the TAS easter eggs?

I know what you’re kind of saying but in Lower Decks they don’t bother to explain any of the references or jokes because they assume you will just get it. And most of us do. For Prodigy, holographic Janeway is literally there to handhold the kids both on the ship and watching the show to explain what the Federation is or how warp drive works. They are on two completely different planes of who their target audience is.

That’s the enigma. It’s a show aimed at 10 year olds who have been Trek fans for 40 years.

That is actually true lol. Both shows are so interesting in that way. LDS is designed for teenagers but it was obviously meant to be a show for hardcore Trek fans and why it works. Prodigy is designed for 8 year olds but yet appeals to older fans because it’s such a layered show in its approach and story telling even though its aimed at kids.

LDS is juvenile at times, but has its pulse on what makes Star Trek tick.

PRO is actually quite mature, but is still done at a level for kids to understand and appreciate.

And they both really adhere to canon, almost to the point they could exist in the Berman era and you wouldn’t know the difference outside of their tone. For people like me, I really appreciate that the most.

I think this is why the animated shows are so popular for the people who like them so much. Even for me, I was skeptical if I could truly like either one and now I’m big fans of both of them and look at them at the same level I do the live action shows.

We actually don’t. Other than the absurdity of Discovery when was the last time we saw actual Klingons? Other than Jurati, we really haven’t seen true Borg since Endgame. And the Romulans… Don’t even get me started with them.

I sometimes find myself blindsided by just how much I love this show. The anticipation I feel as these kids draw closer to the Federation is akin to how I feel when I introduce someone to Trek and they find something about it that just clicks. I seriously can’t wait to see where Prodigy goes and how these kids develop. There’s a part of me that wonders if it might not segue into the long-rumored Starfleet Academy show after another season or two.

I guess it had to happen.

Would have been better to have the show limit the new Trek character participation to the few they already did. But hey… This wouldn’t be a Secret Hideout production if they didn’t throw in as much past Trek stuff in as they can. They have learned that fans love them ‘member berries.

Agreed!

Admiral Janeway should be hybridized with someone else and Hologram Janeway should be forced to choose what to do about it…

It was so great to see this in person at NYCC. Jamil knew she was in trouble the moment she spoke that f-bomb! :-D