Analyzing More ‘Star Trek: Picard’ Season 3 Fan Theories About Jack, Riker, Lore, And More

Note: this article was written by a TrekMovie contributor who does not have access to advanced screeners and has only seen the first three episodes of Star Trek: Picard Season 3. 

Last week’s action and emotionally packed episode, “Seventeen Seconds,” helped confirm and at the same time eliminate some of the suspects in our previous post exploring Picard season 3 villain fan theories. We learned that Changelings are back and Ensign Side-Eye was involved after all. This week, we’re going to run through some even more fan theories about the final season of Picard, with a focus on some of the latest arising from episode 3. From the most plausible to possible to probable to downright crazy, we’re going to break down what the Internet is saying this week. This analysis may contain potential spoilers.

The nebula is home to Space Jellyfish (or another space critter)

The first three episodes take place in and around a big nebula, which in episode 3 was identified as more of an “anomaly” with “both electrical and biological signatures.” That caught the ear of many fans who are now thinking the nebula itself is alive, or it is the home of some kind of space creature. There have been many space lifeforms in Star Trek, so if it is a familiar one, it could be any; take your pick from the Space amoeba to the JahSepp to Nagilum, and the list goes on. As of the most recent episode, there is no real evidence pointing to any given one of them, but it’s fun to get lost in a proverbial inter-spatial singularity while searching for an explanation. But maybe they aren’t inside a space lifeform after all, and something or someone familiar awaits them at the bottom of the gravity well, a place so dangerous the Shrike dared not to follow. Perhaps the way our heroes escape is by getting help from a friendly face (or tentacle). That adds up to the theory that they are about to reunite with TNG’s first creature, the Space Jellyfish (aka Space Vessel Lifeform) from “Encounter at Farpoint.” Who’s up for a little more joy and gratitude?

Getting Jack into the anomaly was Vadic’s plan all along

Another angle on the anomaly: It was clear from “Seventeen Seconds” that Vadic and the Shrike were sort of toying with the USS Titan, just as Vadic said she would do in episode 2. Even though she said she wants Jack, there was no attempt to capture him or board the Titan, and in fact Picard noted that Vadic was “corralling” the Titan, pushing it back into the anomaly via the portal weapon. So the fan theory goes that this was all part of a long plan by Vadic and that something at the heart of that anomaly will interact with Jack in some way—and the “red” vision he saw in episode 3 was the first hint of some kind of connection Jack has to it. There is a logic to this theory; however, how did Vadic know Jack would end up there, to begin with? It certainly isn’t clear how this would fit into her goals.

Lore was the real thing stolen from Daystrom

A big reveal in episode three was that the portal weapon stolen from Daystrom was just a distraction and there is something “more dangerous” that was stolen out there. Hopefully, we’ll find out what was stolen from Daystrom when Worf and “Raffaela” get there in episode four. As pointed out in our last analysis, we know from the official Star Trek Logs Instagram account that Lore’s body was being stored at Daystrom, and we know that Brent Spiner is returning as Lore. So this theory totally fits the facts: The bad guys could have Lore. Maybe he has been pulling the strings all along, somehow getting Vadic’s group to spring him from Daystrom. We also know that Moriarty the sentient hologram is coming back this season, so maybe they grabbed his program stored in the memory module on their Daystrom shopping spree too. Why stop there? May as well pick up AGIMUS, Peanut Hamper, and all the evil AIs they can carry.

Vadic is a new Vorta (and her soldiers are new Jem’Hadar)

Episode three confirmed the theory that Changelings are involved, but to what extent? Do these Changelings think of themselves as “Founders” and if they do, do they have their own versions of Vorta and Jem’Hadar? Worf indicated that the Changelings involved are part of a terrorist faction and not connected to the Great Link, home of the Founders. Could Vadic be, say, Vadic 6 serving the new Founders, and her clicking minions be some sort of offshoot of the genetically engineered, ketracel-white-dependent alien species? With the confirmation of the Changelings coming in episode three, there could be much more to the story, so it is quite plausible there is a bigger big bad behind Vadic. Maybe it’s Laas, one of our favorite rogue Changelings from our previous theory analysis.

Jack is an augment

One of the more talked about parts of episode 3 was Beverly’s reasoning for not revealing Jack’s existence to Jean-Luc Picard or any of her other Enterprise pals. But could there be more to this story behind keeping Jack a secret? One theory is that young Jack is actually an augment. Maybe in her concern to protect her son, Beverly did a little (highly illegal) genetic enhancement to give him an edge. This would certainly explain why she wants him off of the Federation and Starfleet’s radar (sensors?). This would fit the facts, except why would she then send her son to school in London, just a transporter hop from both the Federation and Starfleet HQs? From Khan to Bashir to most recently Una Chin-Riley and Dal, there are numerous examples of genetically enhanced characters in the Star Trek universe, and it is sort of a hot topic these days in Trek. Jack’s weird red vision could also factor into this, but we’re not sure secret augment is the answer.

Riker is a changeling

The revelation of a sleeper agent Changeling on the Titan has some fans wondering who else might be a bit (shape)shifty. One name that seems to be popping up a lot after episode 3 is Captain Riker himself. Much of this comes from the conflict with his former captain. Riker and Picard bickered more in one episode than they did in their entire history together. Was Riker deliberately making wrong decisions to purposely send the Titan into the gravity well? This could fit with the “Vadic wants Jack in the anomaly” theory as well. Plus, it may explain why we haven’t seen Riker interact with his wife Deanna (except in flashback), as she would figure it out in a second as his “Imzadi.” So if we are going down the paranoid route, there could be something here—but then again, maybe Picard and Riker just aren’t as in sync as they were back in the glory days.

Jack is a changeling (but doesn’t know it)

Once you open the door, then sure, let’s just start calling everyone a Changeling, but there is a twist with one Jack theory. Protagonists have been impersonated before, so it’s certainly plausible that Jack isn’t a “solid.” Jack and Beverly have come into contact with a number of Changelings, and any one of them could’ve captured or even killed Jack and taken his place on the Eleos. There really isn’t much to this theory except the fact that once you introduce Changelings, then everyone suddenly is suspect, but there is something intriguing to the notion that Jack could be a secret Changeling in a sort of Jason Bourne kind of way where neither he nor his mother are aware. Maybe Vadic wants to bring him back home? And maybe the real Jack is still alive somewhere. (Has anyone checked internment camp 371?) This theory may be kind of out there, but Beverly did say to trust no one, so it’s worth being a little paranoid.

Riker is actually Thomas Riker

Another fan theory suggests Riker has been acting out of character because we have not been seeing William Riker, but his transporter clone Thomas Riker. If Kirk and McCoy could escape Rura Penthe, it’s certainly possible Thomas Riker could escape the Lazon II labor camp where he was serving a life sentence. Perhaps Thomas has been working with Vadic. The same logic from the Riker=Changeling theory applies here regarding why he would want to get as far away from Deanna as he could to avoid exposure. The same caveat applies that this may be a theory looking to explain away how things have changed between the two over the decades.

Picard has been hacked

Wrapping up the paranoid fan theories is one for Picard himself. A couple of times this season, the show has reminded us that Jean-Luc Picard is actually a robot. Following his death in the season 1 finale, Picard’s consciousness was downloaded into an android synth. So returning to the subject of characters acting a bit off, maybe Picard fighting with Riker was due to him being manipulated. Maybe Lore is out there hacking in and causing trouble? Yeah, it’s a bit of a stretch, but this season has fans questioning all their assumptions.

Worf is Section 31

Section 31 was on the list of season villain suspects in the last fan theory article, and while that appears to have been disproven, the nefarious organization may not be done yet. Episode two revealed that Worf has been Raffi’s handler and we know that she is part of Starfleet Intelligence. However, in episode three, he was a bit vague when it came to his actual position, calling himself a “subcontractor” and saying his concerns aligned with Starfleet Intelligence. In episode two, Sneed name-dropped an apparently still active Section 31, the supposedly super secret rogue operation that works outside of Starfleet on behalf of the Federation. They were the ones who created the morphogenic virus that crippled the Founders during the Dominion War. So this theory has some merit and could explain why Worf cut Sneed’s head off before Raffi could question him; maybe he knew more about Section 31’s connection to the season plot. Another clue comes from Michael Dorn himself, who, when asked to clarify his “subcontractor” vagueness, declined, telling TrekMovie that would be a spoiler. Hmm.

Shaw lost someone to the Borg

From the first episode, Captain Liam Shaw has made it pretty clear he is no fan of the Borg, and by extension, he has had unkind words for both Picard (formerly Locutus of Borg)  and Seven of Nine, who he has requested use her original Human name, Annika Hansen, instead of her preferred Borg designation. Previous seasons of the show made clear that many in Starfleet have a grudge against the Borg—and for good reason, as they have killed and assimilated an untold number of beings across the galaxy, including members of Starfleet. But could Shaw’s resentment be more personal? Could he have a direct connection to the moment when Jean-Luc was assimilated and led an attack on the Federation at the Battle of Wolf 359? Actor Todd Stashwick is 54 and that battle took place 35 years prior to season 3, so it’s plausible to think Shaw could have been there himself as a young officer, maybe even a cadet. And if he wasn’t there himself, maybe someone close to him was lost there. This is another theory that adds up, with the big caveat that this would be essentially the same conflict Picard had with Benjamin Sisko, so it’s a bit on the nose with all the other Deep Space Nine connections.

What say you?

Do you endorse any of the above theories? Have seen others or have some more of your own? Sound off in the comments below.

The third and final season of Picard premiered on Thursday, Feb. 16, 2023, exclusively on Paramount+ in the U.S., and Latin America, and on February 17 Paramount+ in Europe and elsewhere, with new episodes of the 10-episode-long season available to stream weekly. It also debuted on Friday, Feb. 17 internationally on Amazon Prime Video in more than 200 countries and territories. In Canada, it airs on Bell Media’s CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave.

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I can buy Vadic being a Vorta now in this context. Like Weyoun before her, she’s realized that she’s trapped in this situation and has gone even more off the deep end because escape isn’t possible so the only thing she can really do is throw her own life away over and over again and obey orders because she doesn’t think she can rebel.

“Jack is an augment.” I posited this theory when we were first introduced to him a couple of weeks ago, and why Beverly went off the grid – Riker made it a point to mention she cut off all her old crew members. If Jack is genetically-modified, there’s a good reason why.
Thomas Riker…neat idea, but the backstory explanation would have to be tight.

This week-long wait between episodes is cruel and unusual. I’ve become too accustomed to binge-watching.

I also like the idea Jack could be an augment as well. It could be much more than she wanted to keep him safe from Picard’s enemies but also off of Starfleet’s radar altogether.

But I don’t actually like the Thomas Riker idea (or being a Changeling) because I want to see that duo back together again and it would lose all the weight over his issues with Thaddeus. And I think both are ruled out because we see Troi in a trailer telling Riker she’s upset that he left them to help Picard. Again all that dramatic weight would just disappear if we find out he’s not the real Riker during any of it.

But I agree, it’s agonizing to wait week after week, especially when you become so invested in the story. This is originally how I felt at the beginning of Picard season one and Prodigy!

That’s why I am leaning heavier to the Thomas theory than the Changling one. Deanna would def detect Riker is a changling but maybe not so much Thomas since he is technicaly human and Riker.

Yeah Thomas is a little more believable but then the next question is why??? Why in the world would he be faking all of this? And especially since he isn’t close to Picard. At least with the changeling, I can understand WHY they would pretend to be the original Riker, but Thomas makes no sense to me at all. And it goes against the theory in the article it’s to get away from Troi before she finds out. Did he really think he can fake it that long in the first place? And how does that even solve that problem and going off on a mission since I’m guessing it was suppose to last a few days at best? And then if he’s afraid Troi has figured it out, I don’t see how he thought he could trick Picard because he has spent so little time with him and that was from 30 years ago.

So none of it makes any sense to me, but yes I can buy he could sneak around more than a changeling could.

I’m guessing the reasons why would be revealed later? But I can see why pure jealousy would make him be on board with this, esp after Riker 1.0 and Troi got married and had a family. And then he was thrown in jail for life by Cardassia during the Dominion War. Who knows what phycological effects that might have had on him or if the Founders brainwashed him?

Yeah all possible but then it just goes into melodrama/soap opera territory. What separated a show like TNG to the stuff we got in Discovery is that they didn’t do that. The Thomas Riker episode could’ve easily gone in the love triangle territory but the show handled it very well. The original Riker didn’t exactly love Deanna and Thomas were together but he was an adult to understand it and let them have their space. I would like to think since Thomas is basically Will, just with a different life experience once he was trapped, he would’ve just moved on long ago when he discovered they got married and had a family.

But we’ll see.

Yes It is entirely possible I am wrong. In fact I am always wrong in my theories HAHAHA. I just thought that Riker was way off in EP3

And you could also be right, I just hope that ISN’T the case personally. But I was also one of the people who hated the whole secret son thing which is as soap operaish as it gets, but It’s being handled OK at least.

She “cured” Jack’s inherited Irumodic illegally using Augment DNA. Oops!

Oh good call!

Whether Jack is an augment or not, if Beverly wanted to protect her son, she had to cut off all of the other close crew members. Who is she going to speak with Deanna, her closest friend? Who is married to Picards bro? and Deanna could sense any deception. Anyone who knew about Jack made Jack vulnerable (in Beverly’s mind) – once she has decided to part from JLP, it had to be clean from everyone. Given her rationale, then her actions make sense.

I also think it makes her irredeemable, and she will be the one to die. For all the – go talk with your father nonsense – that’s not going to happen. She robbed Jack of a father and JLP of a son. On her ashes is how JLP and Jack build a relationship going forward.

Riker is just Riker, I tend to think Riker is old, he knows that he is jointly responsible for getting the 500 souls on the Titan in a death trap, and he is concerned he will never see his wife and daughter again. That’s what has ramped up his emotions. By fighting as JLP wants him to do, it’s suicide. (it’s actually not, if I am right about Vadic being Vorta, as she could not act in a way which will kill the changeling, and she is under orders to get Jack alive, for whatever reason). But as far as Riker knows, he has a badly damaged and mostly unarmed ship against an enemy with all sorts of weapons including those subspace weapons from the Sona.

Anyway here’s my insane theory for you:

Sneed was planted on M’Talas Prime by Quark as part of the effort to protect the rest of the Dominion.

The subtitles on Amazon last week, confirmed (spoiled?) that the crew are changelings. Also the fact that they appeared as different species/organisations to try and bring in the Elios sort of confirmed that. They’re not a spin on the Jem’Hadar

Subtitles aren’t binding. They can be wrong.

Dunno — last season before Talinn was revealed as a Romulan the sub titles said [speaking Romulan]

Star trek the animated series episode 3. Watched it last Thursday night right after Picard. A whole bunch of similarities the cloud in my opinion

I don’t get it, what is the similarity?

That was on non-Paramount streamers (Amazon Prime and Crave).

The showrunner intervened saying that no one in Paramount provided that text.

FWIW, Matalas shot down the Tom Riker idea on Twitter.

I would normally bemoan anyone sharing these kinds of “reverse spoilers” – ie, debunking theories – but if it’s coming from the horses mouth, i’m ok with it.

But it’s not exactly a spoiler if it’s splattered all over social media for the world to see.

If it was coming from anyone but Terry, debunking a fan theory would be verbotten.

Yeah that’s obviously different. But since it was from Matalas or anyone in the production then its not a spoiler.

Yes, that’s… what i’m saying.

But I still don’t think saying who isn’t in it is a spoiler either. But I guess that’s more subjective.

It’s what I call a “reverse spoiler.” Because if fans are theorizing A or B, and person who has seen the episodes early says “It’s not B” it may not prove A, but it definitely narrows things down. And in some cases, it could prove A.

So generally, it really miffs me when I see people saying “I’ve seen the whole season, that theory is incorrect” or “that character doesn’t appear.”

The fun of not knowing is… not knowing. Anything can happen. If you take an option off the table, that’s what I consider a spoiler of sorts, because it spoils the fun.

OK I get your point and agree. Still doesn’t bother me personally but I understand why it does others.

I profoundly hope that Riker is not a changeling, or Tom Riker, or any other imposter. He’s not acting out of character – he’s acting perfectly in character, and we’re finally seeing some organic conflict among the TNG crew. “Riker as imposter” is probably the one thing that would thoroughly ruin the season at this point, much as Lorca-as-imposter ruined season one of Discovery.

The thing is, Riker being pissed at Picard seems out of place. Not because there can’t be conflict among them but because what happened to the Titan is not Picard’s fault. Vadic was going to catch up to them and blow them out of the water no matter what. And Riker is not the type to tuck tails and run.

“Seems” to who exactly? To those pesky “professional grievance merchants” – my favorite phrase of the week!

Welp its like I said, Riker came down on Picard pretty hard. Exactly which way did he think this was going to go? A cat and mouse escape plan from a Nebula where he was never going to get out of? The Titan was always going to take damage. And frankly Riker’s command style is not at all like anything we have ever seen from him from TNG to Nemesis. Riker goes in head first. He does not, as I said previously, tuck tail and run.

1. Riker is ABSOLUTELY willing to challenge authority where he thinks he is right. In the TNG pilot, we learned he refused to let Captain de Soto beam down into a dangerous situation “because he [Riker] thought he was right.” He refused to acquiesce to Jellico. He challenged Admiral Pressman.

2. “The Pegasus” (which made Riker a much more interesting character just as TNG was wrapping up) explains why: the young Ensign Riker, “his head still brimming with words like duty and honor,” when confronted with a captain exercising atrocious leadership and indeed acting illegally, “grabbed a phaser and defended my captain.” As he matured, he clearly resolved never to do that again. In PICARD, Picard today is acting EXACTLY like Pressman did back then. Riker (belatedly, admittedly) recognizes this fact and views it almost a do-over.

3. Riker has absolutely sometimes chosen to fold where discretion is the better part of valor. For instance, when they put the Borg to sleep in BOBW, he rejected Data’s recommendation to study the Borg and their vessel further, and destroyed them.

I’m not saying that Riker is not willing to challenge authority. Of course he is. He told Jellico what to go do with himself after all. That’s not the point. The point is that it’s not justified here. Nothing Picard did caused Titan’s issues. They were doomed no matter what.

Picard is acting nothing like Pressman. Pressman was breaking the law by allowing cloaking technology. Picard is doing nothing of the sort. Again, it was Riker’s idea to take over the Titan, not Picard’s. All Picard said was our only option is to turn around and fight. And frankly he was right. Where exactly were they going to run in the nebula? The Shitake is faster and stronger than the Titan in every way and one way or another they were going to be blasted to hell. Riker not turning around and fighting is very uncharacteristic for him frankly.

Riker saying to not study the borg and let them get destroyed instead further proves my point. Attack. Don’t study. Sure the “attack” in this case is Data hacking them rather than phasers blasting but still….

Let’s face it, he’s just wrong.

Sure did, as did the side-jaunt to the MU. The season had its ups and downs prior to that creative malpractice, but for me that completely killed it.


Interesting theories but I have yet to see someone making the “Red” connection and speculating on that. I feel there is the mother load.

1. Red nebula
2. Crushers Red visions
3. The Red Lady

Granted, the color of the nebula could be VFX choice not related to the story, but biological signatures being found there makes me think there’s a Red connection.

That being said, the red visions and the red lady are definitely connected as concepts. I have zero idea what that means though :)

EDIT: The red nebula and red visions have been connected by people, what I meant is that the Red Lady also feels like it’s part of that somehow.

Also all the red blood on the floor in sickbay.

That too!


Maybe it is just Michael Burnham, the Red Angel, and she is going to open a wormhole to get them out if there. That way she can be the savior of TNG too!

That would be effing hilarious if they pull of a Michael Burnham Red Angel thing just days after the show has been cancelled lol

Definitely a season for the history books!

Oh, completely forgot that Vadic AND Sneed have red scarring on their faces.

Red does seem to have a meaning for Matalas. In the 12 Monkeys series, “the red forest” is a very important plot element that comes up all the time.


That is so big of a deep cut, I had to Google what you meant :)

I’m going to take that as a compliment…it’s not a deep cut for an oldhead like me! :)

Follow me on this, because it’s bananas: Kirk and Co. beam Redjac into space at the end of “Wolf In The Fold”. The thing drifts or whatever and then is discovered. Maybe the Changelings are trying to weaponize it in a synthetic body, you know, like Lore. Maybe at some point it “takes over” young Jack Crusher. Maybe they need Holo-Moriarty to come back to get “into the mind” of the old Jack the Ripper persona in Redjac.

Okay, this is completely insane. However, if this comes true, I will squee with delight.

Oh boy. And maybe Vadic’s hand-Changeling-Face-Guy is Redjac?

Rewatched the 10 Forward bar scene from “No Win Scenario”:
Picard and Jack Crusher were “on leave on Argelius IV” (according to the subtitles, though it sounds to me like Stewart pronounces it “Angelius”)
TOS “Wolf in the Fold” takes place on Argelius.
Just saying.

I think that the ‘Lore is the more dangerous thing taken from Daystrom’ theory is a great shout.

Certainly would explain how Vadic knows so much about Picard and he knows nothing about her.

A friend of mine just suggested that the nebula the Titan is trapped in is the same that M’Benga’s daughter joined with in SNW S1. Gotta admit I’m now wondering that too.

Oh, that’s good.

It makes sense. It could also be one of the surprise cameos.

that is inspired thinking…….you know it won’t be something that amazing

It’s been on my list of possibilities.

I think you mean “Nagilum,” not “Nagilem.” Also, Naglium is an immortal godlike entity living outside the universe, so I’m not sure why anyone would think THAT’s what the nebula is. For some reason, you guys have linked Nagilum’s name to the Memory Alpha page for “Nucleogenic cloud being,” but that’s from Voyager, not The Next Generation, and has nothing to do with Naglum. Color me confused.

Another theory I’ve come up with is that the nebula is home of the exiled Pah-Wraiths and the vision that Jack had is from the Wraiths. Pah Wraiths could theoretically be part of this faction of Federation enemies.

Oh, that is a good one! I can definitely see the Pah-Wraiths out for revenge against the Federation!

To extend your theory, I can even see the Pah-Wraiths as the ones who “organised” different enemies of the Federation to do their dirty work in order to conceal themselves and not provoke the Prophets.

That being said, it would make sense for them to go after Sisko’s children instead of Picard’s.

Interesting theory nevertheless.

I think Jack is for sure an augment. But I think it’s because Beverly wanted to cure his Irumodic Syndrome that he may have inherited from his father Jean-Luc before it became a problem. However, maybe that fix required her to alter his genetic structure (work banded in the UFP) and the cure had some sought after unintended side effects, making his valuable beyond being JL’s son. This might be another reason for them to work outside the Federation and away from old friends who are very very pro-UFP and Starfleet. (Side note: is Borg sperm a thing? I’ll just leave that there.)

That’s a good theory, makes sense

Genetic manipulation to fix genetic defects is allowed under Federation law, per the DS9 episode, Doctor Bashir, I Presume, so that, in and of itself, wouldn’t have been an issue for Jack and Beverly.

This group of like-minded people want to attack the Federation, and Jack Crusher, alive, is part of this effort. Why? Augment doesn’t make any sense in this case. It’s too basic. Maybe this group needs Picard DNA for some reason since Vadic made it a point to mention that Picard isn’t human anymore. He’s also the only living Picard heir.

tbh I think we need to cycle back around to Vadic also being Picard’s child. As cool as her being a Vorta would be… She was recruited by this group to get revenge on the dad that abandoned her, discovered that she had a little brother and now wants to recruit him into it.


I thought I was the only one thinking about the Borg sperm!

Riker as a shapeshifter would explain some things but he is just SO Riker that it’s a stretch but man that would be COOL — also explains how hurtful he was to Picard after BOTH their plans failed

His personality certainly seems Riker but his command style totally doesn’t. Riker is much more Kirk than he is Picard and he does not run from a fight.

Have you not been paying attention? He’s in the midst of some kind of mid-life crisis, which is affecting his command decisions. They’ve telegraphed that very clearly, even in dialogue.

That’s not even the point. Someone in the middle of a mid life crisis does not choose to steal his old ship and then suddenly decide to run when the going gets tough. Nothing about this is right.

lmao good lord man, you are just living in your own reality where things work the way you want them to. I’m not even going to argue with you, because you’re off doing your own thing in fantasy land. Have fun there.

It’s not so much a “mid-life crisis” as initially letting loyalty to Picard cloud his judgement (Seven did the same thing), and subsequently realizing he was wrong. It’s very much akin to the situation in “The Pegasus,” when a more mature Riker came to appreciate that blind loyalty to Pressman was wrong.

He’s also already expressed having marital problems due to some kind of personal crisis. This has been said in-dialogue. Picard even heavily implied that it was affecting his decision-making.

What is the strategic benefit of that fight?

Neither Picard nor Riker fought just because they couldn’t Bering themselves to break off.

But in this case Picard just couldn’t let it go. That’s not heroic, that’s arrogance and ego, much like the Russian sub captain in the Hunt for Red October who’s utter tactical failure Picard emulated in that scene.

Picard was so locked in he couldn’t even think through the tactical implications of a portal weapon or do his job as an acting first officer and use the resources of the ship to get the Captain an updated threat assessment and options.

The strategic thing to do is to get that ship back somewhere to report.

Unless they outgunned the shrike and were overwhelmingly able to take her out, the critical thing, the heroic thing would be put ego and anger aside and report.

The benefit of that fight was that there was literally no other option. Where exactly where they going to run too? They were stuck in the nebula. The Shrike had them at every turn. The Shrike is stronger and faster than the titan. Matalas has been telling us this since Day one. Should they just get blown up from behind while running? Riker is the guy that took on a Borg Cube and won but the Shrike is too much of a sweat for him?

You seem to have misunderstood the choice and Picard’s failure.

The choice was to take the one-time window of opportunity to get out of Dodge by getting out of the Nebula and going to warp asap once they had stopped leaking a traceable trail (Riker) vs using the opportunity to attack from behind (Picard).

Here’s what was wrong with Picard’s tactic:

Picard assumed that Titan actually had enough ordnance to get in a kill shot that would take down the Shrike from behind (not likely).

Picard’s bullheaded insistence he had the right strategy meant that he BOTH made zero effort to use the resources of the ship to figure out and model how the Portal weapon would impact the tactical scenario (which is the job of the first officer) AND he distracted Riker and wasted his time when Riker should have been figuring out Portal tactics.

As to the risk of getting hit from behind, the Titan is the fastest thing around.

She’s got a double set of impulse engines which makes her faster within the nebula, and she’s a warp 9.99 ship which makes her faster as soon as they clear the nebula.

Last thing, the unexpected was that Titan, in her maneuvering came up in front, rather than behind the shrike. We don’t know yet how that happened, but if they’d been focused on getting out and going to warp using an unpredictable flight pattern, that scenario wouldn’t have presented.

Picard’s bullheaded insistence he had the right strategy meant that he BOTH made zero effort to use the resources of the ship to figure out and model how the Portal weapon would impact the tactical scenario (which is the job of the first officer) Why do you keep blaming Picard for not asking the other bridge officers for their input? Is Riker unable to do this as their leader? He’s literally shown interacting with the bridge officer so many times during this episode, mostly just to tell them to change course though. And the show has clearly shown multiple times that the bridge officers aren’t just shy creatures that only talk when being talked to, like when La Forge, Bajoran man and the Vulcan have spoken up whenever they have something to report – Vulcan lady stating the Nebula is causing damage to the ship with the energy pulses for example, which I think everyone has conveniently forgotten was a factor here too. The Nebula was not an ideal place to be hiding in, and was itself creating a risk of its own for the ship. And Picard was gone from the bridge tending to Jack in sickbay for a time, what was Riker doing during that? Talking to himself? AND he distracted Riker and wasted his time when Riker should have been figuring out Portal tactics. Riker saw how the portal weapon operated…..TWICE. They all did. He sent the ship through it two times, cuz I guess once just wasn’t enough? How many times does he have to see something at work in order to form some type of tactic against it? Or remember it being a thing at the very least? As to the risk of getting hit from behind, the Titan is the fastest thing around.She’s got a double set of impulse engines which makes her faster within the nebula, and she’s a warp 9.99 ship which makes her faster as soon as they clear the nebula.Last thing, the unexpected was that Titan, in her maneuvering came up in front, rather than behind the shrike. We don’t know yet how that happened, but if they’d been focused on getting out and going to warp using an unpredictable flight pattern, that scenario wouldn’t have presented. You’re forgetting that they had been sabotaged a second time after the leak, the explosive device on the power conduit resulting in no warp. They couldn’t out run her at that point, no matter what direction the Shrike was facing. So. I’ve watched the bridge scenes from this episode numerous times now, just to try to make some sense of it all. And I can say that Picard AND Riker were both utterly useless in this situation. And both bullheaded about their strategies. I can’t believe I’ve just done this, and I’m sure Matalas has nightmares about people doing this, but here is a detailed blow by blow account of how the events unfold which go to show just how useless they both were: Riker takes over command from Shaw. They evade the Shrike in the nebula by working together to detonate the torpedo – cute “number one” exchange. Picard mentions after this that the Nebula has potentially given them a tactical advantage as the Shrike is as blind as they are in terms of sensors not working so far inside, if they chose to attack. But Riker reminds him this isn’t the Enterprise, and that they’ll maintain an evasive strategy. He then says he’s open to Picard’s input… but it’s clear he isn’t – cue Picard’s weary look. So here is our first sign that neither of them is willing to listen to the other. This is all happening while they wait for warp to come back online and Riker commands La Forge to keep them “squirrely” and hidden long enough until it is restored. Riker asks for a warp update, La Forge says ready in ten minutes. They then learn, from the weird energy surges that are causing distributions to the ship, that this is not a Nebula at all. It is some form of anomaly and going any deeper in would be a bad idea, logically. Riker never bothers to say “well let’s investigate this weird thing as there may be potential here..”. He just gives the command to change course and that they have the same amount of time it takes to reach the edge of the Nebula as how long it takes to repair warp, for an eventual attempt to outrun the Shrike. So when they’re moments away from reaching the outer edge La Forge says “Engineering says warp is a go”. “WARP IS A GO”!. Now! At this time. And instead of commanding them to go there and then, Riker says “as soon as we’re clear La… Read more »

Riker, like most captains, needs a competent number one in a crisis.

Picard was not only not an effective number one, he got in the way and diverted the captain’s focus and energy by persistently arguing and challenging the Captain’s strategy. And undermining the captain’s authority before his officers. Pretty much as he did to Shaw.

Frankly, we can’t judge how much better either Shaw or Riker might have performed without a self-absorbed retired Admiral challenging at every step.

Picard is basically saying with his arrogant behaviour that he’ll undermine and challenge the fitness of any captain who doesn’t accept his strategic objectives. He owes both Shaw and Riker his apology.

Riker went with Picard based on experience and history together. That worked in the instant Riker took command and they used the classic manoeuvre that even Voyager’s command hologram had on file.

That said, you’re right he should have put the Vulcan science officer in the left seat.

Picard’s job as number one, executive officer is to deliver the ship. That means harnessing the resources and of the bridge and elsewhere, offering options to meet the captain’s strategy.

Riker’s errors were first to let Picard swan like he was number one without really insisting he act like one, then not to tell Picard to leave when he challenged his command in front of the bridge, and third to rely on Picard’s advice and shoot his spread in a last ditch effort.

I get it, you think Picard is arrogant. He is. What was it that foul-mouth Admiral lady say about him again in season one?

But in this situation, here, I’d share the blame out equally between Picard and Riker.

I get what you’re saying about Picard not being a very good… subordinate I guess is an apt word? But would it have changed anything really if he did go along with it? What did Riker not get to do in this scenario because of Picard?

I ask that because you’re acting as if Riker was absolutely incapacitated by Picard’s arrogance during the whole thing, which is unfair. Even if Picard had sat there and gone, “ok will, let’s do it your way”, Riker still got to play out his tactics as planned; an evasive strategy, twice actually as I detailed – which just led them around in circles essentially. Without all the dialogue and bickering, those are the events that took place. Riker’s plan was played out. And it just didn’t work.

And Picard was absolutely right throughout the whole thing, in hindsight. Vadic was just coralling them, toying with them, biding her time. We know this to be true because she knew exactly where they were at all times because of the saboteur, but just pretended like she didn’t at times.

You’re also totally negating the fact that he, as the captain, (in order):

Ignored the energy pulses.
Ignored the unusual biological readings of the nebula which could’ve potentially come in handy somehow – who knows?.
Failed to order them out of there when warp was restored at the edge of the anomaly (before the initial portal weapon sucked them back in).
Completely ignored the revelation that a Saboteur was on board, not ordering a lock down or even anyone to go look for them.
Ordered the Titan to actually find the Shrike’s last known position, the dead end of the leak.
Ordered the titan to fire on the Shrike that they could see had already turned.
Forgot about the portal weapon’s ability to move objects, like ships or… torpedos… from one place to another.
Ultimately, he was a really poor leader. He failed in many ways to ask his people to investigate so many things. He was as bull-headed about his tactics as Picard was about his. Neither of them bothered to think outside of their own ideas, or consider a different approach. It was a shambles.

Like ignoring the saboteur thing alone is….ugh, just unbelievable. For anyone.

Neither of them came out smelling like roses. But maybe it’s just easier to blame Picard for everything because he has had no charismatic moments or funny dialogue, and this show has historically just dumped all over him, and painted him out to be a bit of a joke in the eyes of some of the other characters we’ve seen.

PEANUT HAMPER is the big bad of the season! Suddenly it ALL makes sense!

Would be SO worth it to just to see the Internet explode with the words PEANUT HAMPER!

(And Exo-comps WERE introduced in ST:TNG, an enemy log forgotten?)

LOL, KIDDING (I hope!)

I know I might be one of the few but I secretly I love the last Lower Decks Peanut Hamper episode. It makes me laugh out loud every time I watch that crazy fever dream of an episode.

TOTALLY AGREE with you Andrew SD :)

I’d think Dr Ohk is a villain, likely a changeling.

I had mistakenly thought her name was spelled ‘Okh’ which would be ‘Doc Ock’, a bit on the Marvel villain nose.

Shaw might have died without Crusher’s intervention. At best Ohk is too territorial. At worst, she’s risking lives with her uncharacteristic lack of physician’s collegiality.

So, I am suspicious.

The Shrike has Dr. Strange locked up in the cargo bay, spinning those portals. Don’t be surprised if Thor pops out of one and is mistaken for George Kirk.
Crossover completed. Thank you, where’s my Emmy?

Ohk like Oak, she’s a tree pretending to be a trill.

She’s actually the niece by marriage of the traitorous half-Romulan Nedra who was a mole going by Commodore Oh in season one.

Better yet, she’s crossed with the tentacle life destroying synthetic Doc Ock.

Oh + Ock = Ohk

Note to Romulan conspirators, it’s more fun with twisted clues in your pseudonyms.

I can’t remember this exactly but I remember Matalas saying there would be an episode that shows something ‘beautiful’ or in awe in space similar to what the Enterprise would discover on TNG. I can’t remember his words exactly but he may have been hinting something with this nebula.

The other theories are really interesting. I can believe Worf now works for Section 31. TM asked Dorn recently if he was part of Starfleet or not and he said it would be spoiler. Maybe it’s not but it’s a strong possibility now.

Never thought of the idea Vadic could be a Vorta but I like it! And in an interview back in September between Robert Meyer Burnett and Matalas, Burnett hinted this character is a lot more layered than they first appear. I talked about it a few weeks ago here and just went back to that exchange between them. RMB said at the time Vadic (but we didn’t know her name then) was ‘surprising’ and ‘uncharacteristic’. But then Matalas followed that up by saying, exact words now, “it’s an original villain. But you know where that character fits into the universe. Maybe not at first but as you know more…” And then he said a few sentences later “…the nature of the villain gives you so much story.”

It’s fun to go back and read or listen to when story tellers were trying to be as cryptic as possible to keep something spoiler free before a movie or show comes out, but it’s obvious she’s much more than just a ‘bounty hunter’. And now that we know it involves Changelings the word he uses ‘nature’ could mean anything. She could obviously just be a Changeling herself. So I’m super intrigued now and I’m already loving Vadic just by the little we seen.

Oh and another theory, but more in the way of a surprise cameo, but it’s not out of realm of possibility that we could see the return of Weyoun!!! Combs could be back on this show as one of his biggest characters. They could be up to Weyoun 20 by now lol.

So many crazy possibilities and I’m here for it all! :)

20? I hope not. That poor man deserves a break.

LOL true. We’ll say Weyoun 9 then and managed to live a full life for once.

And btw, this is a great segue lol, but I watched the Jeffery Combs interview on the Shuttlepod show you recommended to me. And you were right, it was great! He has so many stories and actually really funny. Just a reminder how much he killed it being on Star Trek.

Again, it’s great he’s on Lower Decks (I suspect we’ll see AGIMUS return next season) but we need to see him in live action again. And now they gave him the perfect way to come back this season on Picard. Not holding my breath, but crossing my fingers.

He can live a full life with me!

Gay thoughts aside, darn, I thought you mentioned Weyoun to summon me (joke.)

I’m glad you watched it! It’s hilarious that his parents were from Arkansas because I am too and I also have a lot of siblings. That was such a funny coincidence to me. (I’m also the same height and just as near sighted as him. It’s hilarious.)

ngl I’m being kinda impatient for LD season 4 because I wanna see agimus again. I miss agimus. I wanna see Weyoun in the 25th century too, or Brunt, or agimus, or Penk. Not holding my breath either though. I miss Weyoun so much.


And I only knew a little about Combs life and career beyond Star Trek sadly, so I learned tons of things about him including being near sighted. You guys sound like you share a lot lol.

I would be happy to see any of his characters obviously, but who knows? We’re getting a lot of Star Trek again. I was kind of hoping (but didn’t expect it_ Brunt showed up Lower Decks when they visited DS9. But I do think we’ll see him show in live action, if not Weyoun or Shran, maybe someone new. For the moment, I’m pulling for a Weyoun appearance now.

Like you’ve said before, you never know who could appear and everyone is fair game now. LD could even pull off the return of Tsunkatse which means that we will see Penk again. That would be an hilarious episode, I want to see that now.

Also on him being near sighted, it’s like oh so was he the one that came up with the fact that Vorta are also that near sighted. Is Vadic wearing contacts. Ooh Weyoun wearing glasses, now I’m being gay again.

Wow, turns out I was right about some of these possibilities lol. At least about Vadic and the nebula.

I’d throw in a theory to tie the series together that the Changlings are actually trying to capture Picard (or his son) for the Borg (who have agreed to destroy the Federation in return for AI technology that makes electronic organisms on par with organics / makes assimilation obsolete); that his son has Borg-human DNA or in combination with robo-Picard data. Crusher hid Jack from Picard because she knew Picard was compromised/being farmed (he could still talk to the collective in First Contact, was being farmed for AI tech by the Borg), that even her son can still talk to the collective.
I don’t get the Riker as an imposter, I thought everyone was loving the Picard-Riker interactions??

>Riker being an Changeling?

No, this Big Smile when he hear from Picard “call me Nr.One” that no Body double could do :)

>Picard being Hacked?

Ghost in the Shell… suddenly BGM appears out of nowhere. No i do not thing that is possible :)

Agreed. And the whole Changeling theory is hard to believe because he knows Picard so well. We have seen Changelings pass for someone we known for a certain length of time like Bashir and General Martok, but we never seen them interact the way Riker is interacting with Picard here.

It would feel as dumb as the entire Voq/Tyler twist again because there you had a Klingon acting completely human although he’s never been around one before. Ugh, another reason I’m not exactly sad Discovery is leaving. But anyway, I feel that twist would be similar to that unless they been studying everything about this guy for years to fool one of his closest friends for 30 years.

If Riker were a Changeling, would he know about Hellbird? I suppose the case could be made the Changeling got to him after his meeting with Picard in the bar, though, maybe?

Honestly, I hope no one is a Changeling and they keep the story fairly straightforward. I’ve grown to dislike overly complicated plots, especially when they get in the way of character studies. If this older Riker really is cautious while in command and willing to lash out at Picard, then let’s get into who Riker is now and how we got here.

Bashir was replaced by a Changling for an entire year or so in DS9, but the changling could still perform Dr duties and such on part with the genius lever Bashir. Clearly they have eons of experience in replacing people and know how to do it right.

But knowing an obscure code from way back in BOBW? I dunno, that’s stretching it.

Sure, with what we know of the story today it might be. But we don’t know the whole story yet

so you’re willing to wait in the hopes that future events will prove your own elaborate theory, but not willing to wait to see what’s right in front of you? lmao.

for an entire year or so in DS9″

Meh. It could have been as few as five episodes.

Beverly didn’t tell Picard about Jack because let’s be honest… Despite Jean-Luc caring deeply for Wesley (He’d never openly admit it, but lets be real – he let a 15 year old drive a galaxy class ship), the poor boy was constantly in danger because of Picard. From Wesley being sentenced to death for falling on a flower bed, kidnapped by people who couldn’t have their own kids, to crashing on a planet and stuck in a cave.. Picard didn’t exactly demonstrate an ability to be a protective father figure. She wasn’t about to put Jack through all the same things.

In that case, tell him he has a son, then go off and live your own life, Bev. Visit him at the vineyard once in a while. Go on vacation together. Just don’t let the kid drive the ship.

Okay staff can slap me on the wrist if I’m crossing a line here but as a person that can get pregnant my thoughts are this: it’s completely and entirely up to the pregnant person on whether or not they want to tell the other party. If they don’t want to, that’s utterly their right.

Honestly I just don’t agree that Father’s do not have rights. Now if we are taking about reproductive rights that’s an entirely different story. But there are mothers out there that do not tell the fathers about their kids, go back to them years later for money and call them dead beat dads which is totally not fair.

Whoa whoa whoa. Check yourself there on that last part.

First: let me say. In some cases no the other party doesn’t have the right. This wasn’t one of those cases but it’s still 100% Beverly Crusher’s choice. If I got pregnant from a relationship where I knew I was going to be raising that child on my own either way, yeah, I’d be checking out without telling the other party. That child is just gonna have one dad and not two. Better than that child growing up in a situation where they’d be neglected at best and dead at worst. The physical (and mental!) toll that situation would have on that child. I would have to prioritize that, the child should always come first, even before the feelings of the other party.

Second: holy sexism batman. I’m not denying that it can happen but my g-d man get with the times. It’s 2023. Check that attitude, leave it out of the comments section. This is an incredibly dangerous line of thought here.

As a single father with full custody after the mother was found unfit by the courts and had her parental rights revoked with no input from myself I can not disagree more. She was abusive, neglectful, chronically unemployed, and more. She lost custody and rights to all of her 3 children, of the 2 fathers, I am the only one to get custody of my child, the other children were placed with adoptive families. I have had custody of my child since 10-1-2006, 3 days before her 3rd birthday. If I had not known about my child I cannot imagine what could have happened to her, especially since the foster parents the state placed her with left her alone in a Disney Land hotel room with only her 4 year old brother. Their mug shots are funny though, looks like the Disney cops went a little “PG-13”.

I was also the neglected and abused child and my parents both blamed me for it. As if the fact that they were both awful parents was my fault for being born. When I told them what I talked about later down this comment group, the time when I was 11, both of them told me that it was my fault.

But also your story proves my point. If it is better for the child not to have one parent in their life, then that is the decision that needs to be made, regardless of how the other parent might feel about it. If I had been raised without one or both of my parents, I might have been better off. I probably wouldn’t have the personality disorder and other things that I do.

I don’t agree with that at all. A father has the right to know, and a mother has the right to make a case to keep the child in her life and not the father’s. The rest is up to the court to decide.

Take a wild guess why I think that line of thinking is dangerous. The first time it happened was early 2002 before I even had my 12th birthday at the hands of a 40 year old. And it kept happening to me at different times in my life and if I had gotten pregnant from any of those times, would you look me in the eyes and tell me that the other party has the right?

Now that was not the situation Beverly was in, but my perspective still stands.

First, my sincere sympathies to you. But in this specific case we’re talking about two consenting adults. There was no crime committed in Jack’s conception.

My perspective still stands to me. It’s Beverly Crusher’s choice.

And I think rn we need to just accept that we disagree on this because I’ve been reminded pretty hard of that trauma and I need to retreat.

Fair enough. I’ll just part in saying that I do agree if a pregnancy is due to that terrible crime, then the person responsible has forfeited all parental rights.

I wish you all the best.

Yeah! Exactly this!

To be fair, Wesley being sentenced to death had nothing to do with him being an acting Ensign or Picard taking Wesley under his wing. The planet was deemed safe for vacation away parties and Wesley was playing around with other kids at the time, not acting like an Officer.

Being pulled into the gravity well is a good thing. The nebula, with its bio-energy signs, is somehow connected to The Great Link. Gravity well is a portal

Wormhole 2.0?

I’m reminded of a DS9 novel trilogy in which there were Pah-Wraith orbs which opened a red wormhole (Red has been a clue element this season of Picard) and ignited a War of the Prophets which led to galactic Armageddon, where Sisko and crew were flung into 2399, and had to later go into DS9’s past to reset things to prevent the war. It could be a Pah-Wraith wormhole in its development stages

Love the Millennium trilogy. The R-S second best work.

I saw some kind of promotional stuff or interview that came out and said Shaw has Borg backstory … unless that was a Romulan simulation I experienced … Anyhow the nebula is a mass of linked consciousness containing naughty Changelings, Pah-Wraiths, and Borg. Only the combined psionic forces of Lore, Moriarty, and Augment Jack can fully unleash the awesome power of the living nebula to wreak vengeance on the Federation.

I think your clock is malfunctioning.

Well…it’s a theory.

I totally guessed the Riker isn’t Riker theory, whether it be he is a changling or Thomas. But all that means is neither can be true because I am never right about these things lol

I hope they don’t make Riker in this season Thomas, as it was a great first episode with Picard and Riker on a mission together… I would be so disappointed if it ended up not being Will he shared that episode with.

But think about it this way. Since EP1 Riker has been making all of the decisions. Taking the Titan was his idea, not Picard’s. Riker blaming their current issue on Picard is totally out of place for riker. First off, Riker is not the type to run from a fight. Second, nothing that happened was Picard’s fault. The Titan was going to be taken out one way or another. They couldn’t run forever.

Was anyone else slightly annoyed they had to change the uniform for the flashback scene with Will and Picard at the bar? Did they have to change it? Couldn’t he have had the First Contact era uniform on?

I like the shows, I just feel like EVERY SINGLE STARSHIP has it’s own uniform, which kind of contradicts the name: UNIFORM.

I was annoyed too. Not only was there no need for the change, the change itself looked meaningless and frankly kind of stupid.

Yeah the uniform thing bothered me a little too. I don’t nitpick everything to death(or at least I think I don’t ;)), but why did that have to be changed at all? It was only a few years after Nemesis I think fans would’ve loved to have seen him back in his original FC uniform like we saw him and Troi on Lower Decks wear. One thing about these new shows, they’ve gone nuts with the uniforms. I stopped keeping up long ago at this point.

I agree. It’s ridiculous that they seem to be changing uniforms on a bi-annual basis.

Riker should have been wearing the same uniform that he wore in Lower Decks. It would have been the same time period, maybe even the same year.

It’s occurred to me that this is an artifact of having different costume designers for each show.

It may be that they CAN’T use the designs from a previous show easily, or that there may be some IP or credit due if it’s a recent design.

This is why we saw uniforms that were different between the movies and television even for the same time period.

Discovery actually used a spot-on early TNG one-piece uniform for the displaced Kelvin timeline 24th century officer holo record. But that was very exceptional.

Maybe Vadic is the female changeling from DS9 and Picard oversaw a post-Dominion War trial that removed her shape-shifting abilities. Why else would she be after Picard specifically and bent on eliminating everything that makes him human? And the clicking soldiers are hopefully the Breen. We’ve never seen or heard one outside of their refrigeration suits.

I had the same thought that maybe Vadic is the Changeling played by Salome Jens in DS9.

If the clickers are Breen then how can they survive outside of their suits? Actually, we know almost nothing about the Breen really, so that would be a good way to explore them.

In DS9, Weyoun reveals that the Breen homeworld is “actually quite temperate” rather than the commonly assumed frozen wasteland, and that the Breen won’t say why they use refrigeration suits. That could be a lead-in into why the Breen attire is different now; and Star Trek hasn’t indicated what the Breen sound like, except the changeling comment that one of them has a shrill voice. That admittedly doesn’t jive with the clicking communication in Picard, though.


  1. We never saw that happen.
  2. Vadic’s personality and speech patterns are very, very different than the lead Founder.
  3. the Federation didn’t have technology that could lock a Founder into solid form – only the Founders could do that.
  4. Invoking too many events that were off-screen is just not great writing, because you can shoehorn anything into the script that way. “Oh, here’s the new Enterprise-G to rescue you, we just finished building it while you were away” deus ex machina stuff.
  5. That ship doesn’t look very cold. If those are indeed refrigeration suits, they couldn’t really survive without them?
  6. When they boarded the Eleos in Episode 1 and Beverly zapped them (twice, at close range to make sure) they left a strange crystalline residue that Riker noted was unusual. I’m guessing the soldiers are other Founders, and they wear the masks to avoid having to expend energy looking like solids, so those sounds are maybe their native language / communication method when not linked.

Silly theory, Shaw is a temporally displaced Romulan spy from the pre-Federation era recruited by an antagonist faction of the Temporal Cold War. The same Romulan spy the actor played on Enterprise’s Forge arc.

I think after Voq and Discovery, we’re had our fill of displaced spies. At least I have.

I haven’t. Like I said though it was a silly theory, not a serious one. Kind of like a meme I saw recently based on TNG’s The Chase where the projenitor hologram says the bit about seeding life across the galaxy then says “That’s why every species has a Jeffrey Coombs, sometimes more than one”.

As for Voq, and as a person who has hated Section 31 since it first appeared in DS9. I say bring on Voqler and Georgiou Section 31 show already!

If they do it well, fine. But in case of Discovery, they didn’t and it’s put me off this kind of thing ever since.

I wouldn’t hold my breath on a Section 31 show at this point, but I didn’t think we would ever see the TNG cast like this again so what do I know?

See again I disagree, I don’t have 1 problem with Voqler, other than he stayed in the 23rd century, I wanted him to go with Michael. Of course then we might not have gotten Booker, so I’ll take the loss.

I’m not holding my breath though, can’t be gasping while trying to watch the plethora of new Trek. However I do hold out hope that the show does happen because of Georgiou. I’m a culturally/ethnically mixed person. For a long time the only person I saw like me in tv/film was Val Kilmer’s character in Thunderheart. So an Asian woman with a Greek name I see as representation of mixed people worldwide.

I hated the whole Voq thing too. Just really bad and ridiculous writing. But it’s Discovery, so…

I see the Ash/Voq thing as the first example where Discovery took a classic TOS trope, played it straight in a serialized season long story and … behold… Trek fans hated it and called it lame.

Another was the ‘Charlie X’ inspired Burn reveal.

Or the conclusion of season four.

I’m in the extreme minority in thinking all of these were pretty cool (as did my spouse).

I absolutely acknowledge however that there’s a big part of the Trek audience that will go for these classic sci-fi tropes for a weird-%#*^- of-the-week episode but cry “so lame I never want to see it again” if it’s used as a season or half season mystery.

I’m not even sure if they are tolerating it as a 4 episode preamble this season given all the complaints on this thread about being‘stuck in a nebula for four !!! episodes.”

The Voq thing was fine, it was just waaay too obvious and producers got way too cute with it with having fake IMDb profiles and stuff. It was clearly an attempt to create online discussion ala Westworld’s first season the year before, but it was poorly executed in that way.

A group of “like minded people” who want to destroy the Federation but especially hate Picard. Lore and Moriarty make perfect sense. So do the Conspiracy bugs, Romulans, rogue Ferengi, etc. The one that doesn’t make sense is the Changelings. They have no beef with Picard himself, in fact they should be after Sisko if anyone.

Changelings certainly have reasons for revenge against Section 31, and by extension, Starfleet and the Federation (for the virus). Somehow, Jack Crusher, alive, is part of their plan. They need him, not something he’s in possession of, since everything that he had was destroyed on the Eleos.

Yes but none of that explains the specific emnity directed at Jean-Luc, not at his son. Also in my opinion it is pretty obvious that the only reason they wanted Jack was to get at Jean Luc, all that “take him alive” stuff got tossed out the airlock as soon as Picard showed up. I mean the Changeling on the Titan literally killed Jack, it was only a combination of Beverly’s skill plus a mother’s desperation not to lose her son that brought him back.

Maybe I’m missing something, but isn’t the villainous focus on Jean-Luc supposition on Beverly’s part at this point?

The whole “they’re against Picard specifically” comes from the pre-release trailer when Vadic addresses Picard by name. It wasn’t an unfair leap at the time, but if you were to just watch the show, it doesn’t come across that way at all.

Right. That’s what I’m getting at. It’s what Bev thinks, but it hasn’t been borne out yet (to be fair, it also hasn’t been disproven.)

The idea that they’re after Picard is still speculative, both in and out of universe.

Laas has got to be dead. He linked with Odo, so he would have contracted the morphagenic virus, and he went off to look for Changelings in the Alpha Quadrant, so he wouldn’t have been cured when Odo returned to the Great Link. Besides, Laas isn’t really interested in conflict with solids. He doesn’t like solids, but he prefers to just stay away from them. He wouldn’t want to draw attention to himself by starting another war with the solids.

Excellent points. Laas’ dislike for solids just seemed more like indifference to me.

Speaking of Laas, I saw a lot of fans complaining about these rogue Changelings because by definition, Changelings can’t disagree – they’re all one entity. But Laas and Odo prove that if apart long enough they can have their own beliefs and opinions and independent thought.

Even the Founder leader in DS9 acknowledged there was “disagreement” in the Great Link over what to do with Odo.

My theory is that the Riker we’ve seen so far in Picard season 3 is, in fact, William T. Riker, former first officer of the starship Enterprise and former captain of the Titan. What a shitty reveal it would be that in this “final” adventure for the TNG characters, one of the most prominent characters wasn’t actually them at all.


When the theory that Riker could be Thomas Riker came out I watched the DS9 episode “Defiant” again where Frakes appears as Thomas Riker and he is impersonating Commander Riker at the beginning of the episode to see if there were any similarities between his acting in that episode and his acting here and to be honest I didn’t see too much similarities. Frakes has very subtle changes when he plays Thomas Riker and I didn’t see these subtle changes or nuances so far in his appearances in Picard this season. So in my mind he is still the good old Captain Riker.

About the only one that seems plausible is the Shaw lost someone at Wolf 359. All the others read like terrible fan fic.

Agreed. Wolf 359 or whatever the battle at the beginning of First Contact is canonically called (The Battle of Sector 001?)

I’m subbed through paramount+ through youtube as I like the interface better. I notice that some of the ST content isn’t on there and I’m wondering why? Short Treks is on the P+ website but not on youtube P+ and ST Beyond same thing it’s on the website but not P+ youtube

I think people forget that Riker has always been a bit of an asshole at times. Look at how he treated Ro, Reg, and Shelby. If he disagrees with an officer’s decisions, or thinks they are being unprofessional, he takes it very personally and can be very blunt and rude about it. It’s never been an issue with Picard, since Picard was his captain and they were usually in agreement. That is no longer the case now.

Don’t forget Lavelle. He was a jerk to him because he reminded Riker of himself.

My guess – Jack isn’t her son. He’s a mind control guy who’s making her think he is, and is part of the plot against the federation. Vadic is doing her thing to cement make everyone think he’s the good guy.

For twenty years? Whats the end game?

The nebula is home to Space Jellyfish
I’m thinking the nebula actually could be the recently deceased  Q (or another one).  When a Q passes, they truly become stardust. Or could it actually be Sisko (with the “organic material”), and we’re in for a great Avery Brooks cameo.

Getting Jack into the anomaly was Vadic’s plan all along
Only Beverly knew what the coordinates would be. Vadic knew to go to the nebula due to the Changeling being on the Titan.

Lore was the real thing stolen from Daystrom
YES!! But I believe there is more to this. I suspect that when Data couldn’t emerge through B4, so Maddox transferred Data from B4 to Lore. Had Lore moved to the secure Daystrom location to experiment on him. I’m thinking as a result of the experimentation is why Lore looks “old”. What if the Founders splinter faction know about the Data-Lore transfer, and really want Data.

Vadic is a new Vorta (and her soldiers are new Jem’Hadar)
100% makes sense.

Jack is an augment
Don’t think so. It appears Beverly wanted Jack to be as normal (and safe) as possible.

Riker is a changeling
Intriguing idea but would be too complicated of a storyline for just 10 episodes.

Jack is a changeling (but doesn’t know it)
Don’t think so. That would just be too heartbreaking for Picard and Crusher.

Riker is actually Thomas Riker
Again – Intriguing idea but would be too complicated of a storyline for just 10 episodes.

Picard has been hacked
Don’t think so. He is just getting too emotional after finding out about Jack and is doing anything to protect him.

Worf is Section 31
Not directly, but as he said a “Subcontractor”. Think of the original Mission Impossible series. If Worf’s assignment goes sideways, Section 31 will have total deniability.

Shaw lost someone to the Borg
This could just be retreading the Sisko backstory.

We all seem to be forgetting about how Moriarty fits into all of this. What if he is actually pulling the strings of the Founders splinter group.

Vadic is a Chameliod like Martia in Star Trek VI. She smokes like her and her species could shapeshift like the Founders.

It would be wild if a TOS callback was Iman playing another version of Martia, also smoking, in a scene with Amanda Plummer.

“Picard has been hacked”.

This made me laugh for some reason, maybe the way it has been worded. I never considered it for some reason, but the idea that this character who is made of such strong…idk…convictions and substance can just be hacked… I’m still laughing at the silliness of it all 😂

In another comments section here, I wondered if there was something related to “Times Squared” happening. Some replies referred to overall quality of the episode or lack thereof. What I was trying to get at, is maybe the solution is to go forward, not backward like in that episode.

I wouldn’t discount anything timey-wimey, or any deeply weird classily Trek sentient phenomenon or cosmozoan.

I don’t find this slow at all, but I’m older and comfortable with it taking time to develop as long as the season is coherent overall.

My real problem is that I have found Picard less and less someone to admire since First Contact, and I don’t really care if he has a son. His ego, self-absorption and arrogance are really grating.

I’m an older parent myself, and our teens were and are very much wanted children. The first thing about being a parent is caring more about their kids’ wellbeing and their futures than our own, then to listen to what they want for themselves as the develop. With Picard, it’s really still all about him, despite any progress in seasons one and two.

I’m glad in hindsight that my spouse and I were at a point in our lives to put our kids first when needed, at times sacrificing career progression. I still don’t see Picard as capable of doing that. His behaviour just keeps reinforcing how right Beverly was in her choice.

So, I’m not invested in Picard as the principal character as I once was.

Personally, I understand his journey, it makes sense, but I don’t really like him.

He’s gone from a leader I admire and who’s leadership practices I try to adopt into my own work towards the kind of older executive who doesn’t know how to accept new and different views.

Patrick Stewart wanted so very much to make Picard someone he was interested to play. He’s used his creative veto to prioritize that. He’s unfortunately made Picard a character I find less empathetic or interesting to watch.

I sincerely hope that whatever is greenlit is not Picard season 4 but rather a Titan show where Picard may appear as an occasional guest or recurring character.

Latest trailer for episode 4 shows Vadec holding a Reman Jackal knife just like Shinzon’s. It was blink and you miss it. She wants Jack’s DNA (Picard no longer Picard so he doesn’t have any)

I knew I recognized that knife from somewhere, but couldn’t place it. Good catch.

i don’t get why the changelings are interested in picard….the enterprise-e and picard seemingly had little to do with the dominion war. the only thing i can think of is there is anti-federation federation forming..think legion of doom

Whatever the link between Picard and the changelings is seems like the central plot of the show that has not yet been revealed. Jack’s recurring vision seems tied to why the changelings want him, which presumably also connects to Jean-Luc.

I’m wondering if the mystery will take the Picards and friends to Deep Space Nine and maybe through the wormhole. Something weird and sinister is going on in the Great Link it seems based on Worf’s comments and Vadic’s controller, and what looks like a network of changeling spies and terrorists spread throughout Federation space.

I think this might be a terminator 2 judgement day story. Jack might wipe them out in the future so floating head is talking back through time to kill him when he’s young. Beverley is Sarah Conor.

This is indeed one of my one (very minor) miffs: if you’re doing a TNG reunion, why pull a villain from DS9? It works, because the Dominion were established as a threat to all of the Federation, and the war spanned the entire quadrant and beyond, but… just thematically it’s kind of a head scratching choice.

My sense is that they are setting this up to carry forward with a show that covers the entire TNG-DS9-Voyager mythology, so having a Federation-spanning villain may be a way to unify those continuities.

I say maybe Beverly altered jacks dna and found the only thing that could prevent the neurological disease that Picard had was changeling dna and that he’s a hybrid. Maybe the founders know what she did and think he’s an abomination so they want to destroy him. Maybe that explains his visions him connecting with the great link. That’s why you see in the ending credits all the dna info.

I have a theory! Moriarty is resurected by Geordi to defeat Lore because Moriarty was created by Geordi (accidentally) to defeat Data. This stuff just writes itself! LOL

Having seen the latest episode of Picard Season 3 ‘The Bounty’ I find my Armus theory compelling.
Armus, the unexplained entity from Vagra 2 who killed Tasha Yar.
Tricked by Picard into letting Troi escape when Picard provoked his angriest of emotions now consumed with thoughts of vengeance and interestingly at the end of the last episode, we have Riker held prisoner with Troi again as hostage, the same situation from ‘Skin Of Evil’.
Is Armus the legacy of the changelings, he certainly has the appearance of a changeling and the choice of surrounds to match, along with a reason to hate Picard with the same intensity as Khan hated Kirk.
Armus was never killed, the planet he was on was quarantined only, an easy find for a angry group of changelings with a bone to pick.

Jack is a Q

Well, maybe not, but that would be cool.

I am going to throw this one out there.

Does any of this have anything to do with the Iconians?

Deanna gave some hints, Ancient and weak, Picard has always had a fascination with them, and his genetic connection with jack and irrimodic syndrome seems to be a factor here.

Demons of Air and Sky, may not have that correct but lets see if that is who this turns out to be.

I think all the villains to date are just players, the big bad is the Iconians maybe?