Patrick Stewart Talks Tension Between Jean-Luc And Beverly Crusher In ‘Star Trek: Picard’ Season 3

The third and final season of Star Trek: Picard is just two months and now we are hearing a bit more from the man himself as Sir Patrick Stewart talks about the new dynamics between the returning Star Trek: The Next Generation characters.

Picard’s Fury with Beverly

Patrick Stewart is interviewed in the new Den of Geek Magazine and he talks about the upcoming season of Picard will have a new level of tension between Jean-Luc Picard and Beverly Crusher:

Well, there was a lot of personal tension that was always there. Jean-Luc always admired her, and she, him, in equal measure. But there have always been issues in the past where Picard thought maybe she wasn’t behaving appropriately. And, of course, there had been the makings of a romance, which didn’t seem that it was going to work out. But [this season], we learn that life-changing things have actually happened for Beverly Crusher and Jean-Luc Picard. His fury about the way in which Beverly has lived with this unexpected event led to some of the most interesting scenes that I played. The scenes I have with Gates in season three are among my favorites because they were emotionally naked, both of them…and vulnerable. I don’t think we’d ever seen both of them at the same time at that stage.

It has previously been reported that Picard and Crusher have not seen each other for years ahead of season three, which begins with Beverly’s ship coming under attack from an unknown threat.

Gates McFadden as Dr. Beverly Crusher in season 3 of Picard

Facing off with Riker

And there is even more tension to cover as Stewart talks about some of the intense scenes between his Admrial Picard and William Riker (Jonathan Frakes):

It’s an illustration of how strongly both of them feel and the intensity of how that relationship developed. There were some very warm and lovely scenes between the two of them because they love one another and adore each other. But you see, when we learn that Picard was perhaps not right in the choices he was making, that was important to me. That made Picard more human. It made him somebody who, to our surprise, could allow his feelings at times to overwhelm him in a dangerous and negative way.

This new dynamic has been hinted at before. In his TrekMovie interview last month Frakes said “Riker has a big conflict with Picard as part of the arc for the season.”

Jonathan Frakes as Riker and Patrick Stewart as Picard in season 3 of Picard

Coming on Feb 16

The third and final season premieres on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2023 exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., with new episodes of the 10-episode-long season available to stream weekly on Thursdays. Here is the latest trailer from NYCC.

Picard streams exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S.A. It is distributed concurrently by Paramount Global Content Distribution on Amazon Prime Video in more than 200 countries and territories, and in Canada it airs on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave.

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Doesn’t Picard have a girlfriend now?

It’s best to think of Picard as 3 seasons of the same show from 3 parallel timelines.


Haha so true!!

Wow that works so well.

I don’t agree. Maybe you can’t handle complex storytelling.


For like 5 minutes…

(Rumor has it Laris is in only 5 minutes of season 3)

It feels like we’re going to find out that Picard and Crusher had a child and it didn’t go well- kind of a Kirk/Carol Marcus estrangement vibe.

I really hope not. But those supposed leaks of Ed Speelers from Downton Abbey being a secret part of the S3 cast make it seem plausible. I’d like to think that good ol’ Bev could get plenty of action beyond J-L. See: candle ghosts and pansexual Trill ambassadors.

And we are going to find out that we knew their child all the time…
“Wesley, I am your father!”

…and at the end of this season Wesley kills Picard on a bridge with his phaser at close range.

My guess is Picard’s “fury” toward Beverly has to do with the reason she’s no longer in Starfleet.

Would that make sense though? Didn’t Picard himself quit Starfleet as “it was no longer Starfleet” after the whole Romulan supernova and failure to help thing?

Unless she quit several years before he did. There are several years of mostly unexplored history between the conclusion of Nemesis and Picard’s resignation.

If there is tension and Fury between them, then I guess they are married right now then

Sometimes I wonder about Patrick Stewart’s view of Picard. He seems to have a reflexive need now to cast him as someone in the wrong, as an arrogant maverick, or as a sad and miserable person. It’s almost like he (and the writers) look back on TNG’s Picard as a stern, borderline abusive father in the house… er, ship. Which is a personal subject for the actor to want to cover, I understand that, but the Picard in this series and the one from TNG have never quite lined up, in my opinion.

Oh well, Kirk changed over time too. I have to remind myself of that. (Though he was more fun).

I should add that I did very much like the Picard we saw as head of the Academy at the beginning of Season 2. That was wonderful.

picard was up and down over the years, healing with hugh over his assimilation and then hell bent on destroying them no matter what in FC.
and he was brusque, no nonsense from ‘farpoint’ on until things jelled with the crew.

kirk could be a real d***, especially dumping decker to get back in the centre seat in TMP

Despite those ups and downs, it still felt like Picard to me, like we were seeing different facets of the same person. In “Picard” so far, it just seems like the adventures of sad Patrick Stewart for the most part.

Maybe too much time has passed in between. I had the same issue with Al Pacino when he came back to play Michael Corleone a third time. The voice and acting style had changed so much it didn’t seem like the same character. Though the writing too was subpar.

pacino doing michael as king lear, ageing with regrets

Oh for sure. JL was dealing with A LOT of trauma.

I’m very uneasy with anything Patrick Stewart says about the character or show at this point.

Whatever he thinks is exciting and meaningful as an actor has proven disinteresting to me in the first two seasons of Picard. Yes, much of the problem was in the execution and the writing of the first two seasons, but still so much of it seems to be the result of giving Stewart what he wanted to play at the cost of what the audience longed to watch.

I really don’t think he understands the positives that people saw in TNG Picard at all. He came to understand that Picard was an important and influential character in society, but I have no sense at all that he understood how aspirational the competence of Picard and his bridge crew were. In this era of shows about pathologically unhealthy workplaces, TNG still stands out as a model.

I’m sure that Paramount’s marketing feel that he has to be part of the promotion. There must surely still be some fans that trust his assessment, but I don’t think I am in the minority in finding his comments are nothing more than disquieting given the past two seasons’ track record. Better to let others speak.

Hard agree!

Well put.

Have to agree with this, well said.

Stewart has tried to make Picard more like him, then layered in some extra fallibility. The problem is that, delightful as he may be, Patrick Stewart is very little like Jean-Luc Picard.

I think it’s clear that Stewart didn’t understand who Picard was as long ago as the time when he said that Picard should do more “fighting and f*cking.” WTF? Stewart wants to play an action-hero captain like Kirk? Doesn’t he understand who Picard IS?

I guess not.

he didn’t want picard to be a eunuch though or not be able to handle himself in a fight.
but picard was and is largely a thoughtful man of words

Picard in TNG was created by the show’s writers. Picard in Picard was created by Sir Pat. They are basically 2 very different characters.

I’m still excited for Se. 3, but this interview killed my vibes a little bit.

I will be honest when I say, at first, I was taken aback by how this new Jean-Luc Picard has been treated and acted out. Very early they announced that this was essentially Star Trek’s version of Logan so I went in prepared for some changes, but won’t deny the changes we’re somewhat more intense than I anticipated.

Then we dove deeper into Season one and my questions as to why Picard are so different were answered: Starfleet accepting his resignation broke him. The seeds were planted in Generations that Starfleet was his home and family following the death of his brother and nephew. He was keeping the Picard family name going through his service to Starfleet and the Federation. It was his family’s legacy. That also explains some of the changes in the TNG films.

Then, following the Federation Day Massacre his family changed. He saw a new Federation and Starfleet arise from the old. He tried to keep them on the noble path and threatened his resignation. He never imagined they would accept, but they did. Now he is not only without his real family, but his adopted one as well. So he returned to his Chateau and was faced to examine his choices.

When he, suddenly, has a mission and purpose again his adopted family shut him out. I thought, at first, it was Clancy who kept him on his spiral, but it really may have been the Ensign who didn’t know who he was when he checked in.

In the end the changes really come down to one key detail: he was dying. In the end I think that is the key question of Star Trek Picard: how do we accept death? Throughout the series death is a constant. We have:


For anyone facing death you wonder what will happen next, but you also wonder about those you leave behind. That can have a profound impact upon your actions.

Yes, and it was death overload, in my opinion. It didn’t just explore this theme, it bludgeoned the audience with ‘look how at how many characters we can fridge, and look how miserable Jean-Luc and the Federation are now.’ Then season 2 continued this with all the stuff with his mother, trying to build the case that he was always this haunted man with a deep dark secret in his past.

And that cuts to the core of my issue. As with Discovery, Picard has traded the prior heroics and boldly going fun of Trek for the kind of shallow melodrama found in a Lifetime movie, coupled with the very dark and very serious and very violent turgidness of a Zack Snyder superhero outing.

Sorry, but so far I’ve found it all ponderous and have struggled to get through to the end each time. Here’s hoping for something better in season 3.

There’s a reason most actors aren’t writers.

On Riker’s uniform, looks like the red goes down the arm?

I feel like the goal in this is to create something akin to the relationship statuses we saw in All Good Things..the idea that some ends were inevitable

no happy ending without struggle first

But there have always been issues in the past where Picard thought maybe she wasn’t behaving appropriately.

Huh? Not on TNG. What’s he referring to?

I’m struggling to think of any besides “Suspicions” or reviving the people in “The Neutral Zone.”

Banging ghosts and resigning for said ghost.

LOL. True. :) But that was possession, and no one has been possessed more than Picard so he should certainly understand that happening.

I wondered about that too. Could he be referring to the episode where she performed an autopsy on a Ferengi without the family’s consent? That’s all I could remember.

That’s a good question. They clashed over things a few times but I can’t think of any episodes he thought she went too far?

Could Picard be Wesley’s father? Could that be why they brought him back at the end of season two? If so, I am not down with that. No.

I don’t think so. Terry Matalas seems to be a true TNG fan, I don’t think he would crap on the legacy of Picard’s friendship with Jack Crusher and his later friendship with Beverly. Maybe Picard and Beverly got together after the events of Nemesis and had a child? He or she would be a young adult at this point.

That would be horrendous. It would even spit in the face of the performance Stewart gave in Generations when he realizes through his tremendous grief that he is the last Picard and his legacy and family line dies with him. God how horrible would that be. Picard to me isn’t worth watching that would be so so bad.

Beverly had his kid. Kept it hidden from him. Vadic is going after JLs son for revenge. JL ticked at Beverly for hiding his son from him. Round up the crew to protect Bev and Jr from Vadic.

Completely plausible. What do you think Vadic’s ultimate motive is?

It is possible Jean-Luc and Beverly got together at NEM; the kid would be a young adult at this point. I’m thinking there’s a much deeper connection though for Vadic. Is it possible Vadic is somehow related to something Picard did while captain of the Stargazer?

I’m leaning towards Vadic being either a former Borg (given the facial scarring) gone insane, or an angry augment (since it was a plotpoint in SNW and Prodigy recently).

I could see Vadic being an XB who has gone insane. Maybe she was close to Hugh and blames Picard for his death. But there is the line in the trailer where Beverly says to Picard: “It will be what it always was, attempts on your life.” That to me suggests something older. 

If they do this I think it will damage at least one, if not both characters. Or it will just enforce stereotypes that I think we should leave behind.
It sheds a bad light on Picard if he doesn’t even know he has a kid with a woman he’s been close with for decades. I mean, did she they break up after they had sex, and he never even bothered to know what happened to her after that?
It also sheds a bad light on Crusher if she somehow hid a kid they had together from him. I mean, just why?

This Vadic character was giving me Shinzon vibes. That’s not necessarily bad. But that’s what I thought.

What if Vadic is Shinzon’s sister or daughter?

Didn’t he have a wife who died? If Shinzon married his female clone – which would make them Romulan-incestuous – Vadic could be the daughter of two Picard clones!

I am laughing, writing this.

Hey, PIC already has a history with incestuous Romulan siblings already so who knows?!

Agreed, but it does look a bit lame and is concerning.

Yeah sadly agree. Not just Shinzon vibes, but also Nero, Krall and Khan 2.0. All these one dimensional characters that really really want to take down the Federation for questionable reasons. Some of the people whose seen the season does say that her motives are deeper than that and she’s a more interesting character than the trailer suggests. But why do they feel the need to keep going this direction in the first place when people are plainly tired of it I will never get?

I have wondered if Vadic is somehow tied in to the Ba’ku and Son’a. Something about her and her ship reminds me of them.

Maybe she’s a recast Anji who’s mad JL didn’t come back for that shore leave…

Beverly was never the same after Picard swapped her to the Orion’s for a Ferengi artifact and a years’ worth of non-replicated Earl Gray…..

Maybe Bev went renegade. Not just quit Starfleet, but, like, stole a ship and does risky things like medical missions in disputed space. Really broke some serious laws and makes for serious political trouble in the name of medicine.

I hope they tie her “Doctors Without Borders” thing in with that medical organization the 21st century doctor started in S2, BTW.

That would be interesting if Beverly went rogue. She has always spoke her mind over Federation policies in the past any time it stopped her from helping others and maybe quit Starfleet so she can help more people.

You speaking of the Raiders where Seven came from? Could also be plausible

Interesting. I am really hoping that today’s McFadden has improved her acting chops over what we saw from her in TNG, because that wooden style of acting is not going to be convincing given she has much larger role than usual here.

I’m hoping for the best because she’s a great person and I want to see her succeed in this expanded role. But I would not be being honest if I said that this does not concern me given it seems major plot points are tied to her character.

The TNG writers didn’t exactly give her the most interesting stuff to work with.

she had way more to do in the tv show than when she was side lined in the TNG movies

Beverly was one of the least developed of the seven primary TNG characters. But yes, you are right about the TNG films. The only that gave her anything of substance was First Contact.

Gotta admit this all sounds good! I really hope they do the Picard and Crusher relationship right and it sounds very intriguing.

I really want to love this season the same way I love Lower Decks and Prodigy but Picard has been on par with Discovery as some of the worst Star Trek I ever seen and I was excited about both seasons.

Crossing my fingers this will do these great characters justice now that they are back.

Yeah I agree. It does sound really interesting and I love Beverly so even more so.

But like you, this show has been very frustrating. The first two seasons had so much promise and excitement around them only to feel like a lead balloon by the time they were over, especially season 2. I thought season 1 was bad too but I thought the first half was mostly solid. But season 2 did a much better job wrapping up its story but the whole thing was so bad I really didn’t care by the end.

So I am hoping this one will be the one that knocks it out of the park. They are bringing back all these characters that a lot of fans been wanting to see again for over a decade, please don’t screw it up.

My only issue with Season 1 was it should have been 12 episodes instead of 10. The first three were basically one large pilot; the last two the finale. That only left five episodes in the middle to flesh things out. Episode 108 felt especially rushed. Everyone comes together and figures things out in the last ten minutes then bam – two-part finale time! Season 2 … meh … Parts of Season 2 were very well done – like Jurati’s journey into Borgati. Loved that! Other parts – did Adam Soong need so much screen time, why did we need Kore, and wouldn’t Wil Wheaton’s cameo have been better served having him share screen time with Patrick Stewart? – I did not enjoy so much. I am riding the optimism wave though, I think Season 3 is going to fly.

To be honest, I feel the opposite about season one. To me, the problem was that too much of the middle episodes felt meandering and not enough story happening. And then by the end, they just rushed the ending when they could’ve just filled what we saw a lot earlier. In other words, the pacing was just badly off from beginning to end. The story could’ve been MUCH tighter. And if was in better hands, they could’ve told it in 8 episodes honestly.

Sadly if you wiped away the entire XB story line for instance, what do we lose? It was basically there to introduce Soji and bring back Hugh. But the subplot went absolutely nowhere in the end. We still don’t even know why the Romulans were on the Artifact. It’s ironic because that was the part of the story that drew me in the most. Also why did it take Soji 6 episodes to learn who she was that we already knew in episode 1? If it was a mystery for both her and the audience, that would’ve been different, but another thing that could’ve been resolved in half the time. There was just so wasted potential in season one.

Now we mostly agree about season two. There were definitely some interesting set ups in it, but like season one, mostly wasted by the end. And yes Adam Soong had too much screen time. And Kore was a complete waste. It literally felt like they had to use the actress and this is what they gave her. Her presence added nothing to the overall story. Again just so frustrating because there could’ve been a really interesting story line there. Someone making clones in our time sounded interesting and I thought was going to tie in to the altered timeline somehow but nope!

But yeah, all that said, I’m still hopeful season 3 will finally give the show a strong and memorable season, especially being its last. And it was smart to remake the show into a TNG season because let’s face it, that’s what most fans wanted from the beginning anyway. Now how WELL they pull it off is obviously still a big question mark, especially given the last two seasons. But this will bring in people who might have given up on the show because it not only sounds like season 8 of TNG, but a true post-Nemesis story line as well. I’m super excited about having the entire cast back and finding out what they been up to since Nemesis, but I’m just as excited to hear how everything has changed since the Dominion war. We gotten a little of it in LDS, but being a comedy you can’t go too deep with it. And on Prodigy, they been mostly in the Delta quadrant this whole time.

And it’s just great to have a new century to explore now. I hope whatever show replaces Picard gives us something interesting for the 25th century. Star Trek should always be going forward IMO.

I am curious … what do you mean by “do the Picard and Crusher relationship right?” Do you want them to end up together? I always shipped (I know, I know, dumb word) the two of them during TNG and felt completely let down after the movies. I’m not saying I want them to end up together – okay, part of me does – but it would be nice to finally get a real deep-dive into this relationship. I know you love the TNG era as much as I do so I’m curious what you mean.

Please tell me it isn’t a remake of Wrath of Khan. With Vadic as the Khan replacement. Beverly Crusher as the Doctor Carol Marcus, and Picard having a son he never knew he had.

If it prevents them from making another cinematic remake of TWOK, I suppose it would be worth it.

However, Terry Matalas’s claim to fame is making the 12 Monkeys television show vastly surpass the 90s movie. So, I’m ready to be open minded whatever the case.