3.10 Star Trek: Picard - The Last Generation

ctg

weaver of the unseen
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In a desperate last stand, Jean-Luc Picard and generations of crews both old and new fight together to save the galaxy from the greatest threat they've ever faced.
IMDB score: 9.6 Runtime: 46 minutes
 
Well, this is it, three seasons Sir Patrick Steward promised to do with Paramount is over. We got ups, we got downs, and we most certainly got plenty of fan service, often in a way that cannot be explained. Not easily. Star Trek has always been the harder leaning on the SF material than what SW could ever deliver, but then again it is classified as an SF series and not a space fantasy.

I expect no major deaths in this episode and a Disney ending. So let's see how it rolls...
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"This is President Anton Chekov of the United Federation of Planets broadcasting on all emergency channels. Do not approach Earth..." I wanted to write 'we have effed up,' but it's not like Feds knew this was going to happen on their celebration day. The area they've encompassed under one banner is huge, and it is equally strange that Earth remains as their capital planet, instead of moving the administration to a somewhat better location. And why is that the humanity has colonized other planets, or made settlements in the Kuiper Belt, while calling the whole Terra or Sol.

Deanna Troi added to the confusion, "If Earth falls, everything falls," line that doesn't make sense. But for the Borg hiding a transwarp conduit in the Great Eye of Jupiter all props for them. Amazing feat, straight under StarFleet noses. Bravo.

It is logical that Picard saw that their only option was to dive into the warp conduit and go to sever the connection between the Queen, Jack and the Collective. After all it is what they do and the move even though looked like a Hail Mary, Do-or-Die, I saw alternative ways for them asking the Other Systems to own up the pledges and go full on war with the Borg.

Earth most probably would get ruined in the process, along with a lot of humanity, but it's not that they've put all the eggs in one basket. Where was Klingon's Armada or Vulcan/Romulan Stealth Fleets? Nowhere. It was one ship, Enterprise-D, against a Borg collective.

"Mr LaForge, take us in," Picard said. Yet even then they still fiddled their thumbs and were amazed that none of the fleet sensors had recognized something strange happening in the Jupiter System, even though today we study the mighty guardian with all the instruments we can aim at that location.

According to Data, the cube was 'only 36 percent functional' with most of its operation aimed at delivering Jack's broadcast signal. According to Troi Jack was being totally assimilated by the Collective. So admiral made a decision to beam in with Riker and the NinjaMaster.

One last hurrah.

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Not that there was opposition as the husks were being used to preserve the Queen's life functions and keep the Cube operational. Riker called the Conduit as tomb. Coming close to Jack's location, admiral sent first and ninjamaster back, while he continued on following mum's advices until he came across fully assimilated Vox and a mutated Queen.

Not Agnes. Locustus just have arrived to home, to the Necro Queen. She was pissed at Locustus for leaving them "At the edge of space, with no worlds to consume. All alone, dying."

And yet, it's not true as in the first season we encountered a cube on the ground, in the second Agnes became a Queen, and it feels that the Necro Queen couldn't connect back to those who were still alive and get updates on their situation.

One thing though, "The future of the Collective doesn't lie in assimilation, but in evolution."

Yeah, Queen Agnes is that promise. According to the Necro Queen, their future was all about the annihilation. But it was Data, who was bringing that to them, as he dived the Enterprice and started navigating the Cube channel in order to reach its heart.

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Bravo girls, you took back the Titan with a very clever gismo. But I don't get why they couldn't use the transporter beams to make them appear in the brig, and not into a transporter room, where they could possibly still gain access to Titan's functions?

I loved that Seven didn't hear cook's objections, but ordered him to take the pilot station. Yet, it wasn't much they could do but fiddle their thumps until Raffi located Enterprise-D engaging the Borg Cube, and questioned Seven's confidence on Picard's ability to do anything with "an ancient vessel."

Oh, the youth. All they want is new and shiny stuff, while old and venerable, tried and tested galaxy class can still deliver. After all, the galaxy class survived multiple encounters with the Borg. I also loved that the cook questioned Seven's orders to fight the fleet.

They did put up a good fight until the Space dock was lost to continuous fire, and Titan lost its cloak to LaForge sister's sabotage op.

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Thank Data for being awesome. Making your own entrances with photon torpedoes and delivering Enterprise to where it could maximal damage to the Borg system. Your crew didn't believe you, but your fans most certainly trusted that you deliver another impossible manoeuvre.

It didn't take long for them to figure out that taking out the beacon, they would end the threat. The Cube would die with everyone in it. At the Queen's chamber Admiral pulled out a cord and connected to the Collective to find Jack standing at the heart of it, all alone.

LaForge in charge ordered Beverly to target the Beacon. She did so and followed the command to fire with tears in her eyes, while the Admiral said goodbyes to his son. Hail Mary but it worked as Jack severed the connection and rescued his dad.

With the Cube gone, Disney ending with Earth saved and people return to their last forms. Except Jack, forever changed by the experience.

At the aftermath, Tuvok promoted Seven to captain status and gave her Titan. Raffi decided to stay as Seven's first officer. The rest of the Last Generation remained in the fleet in various functions. And Titan got renamed as Enterprise-G.

What the hell was that with Q in the post-credits scene?
 
It seemed like hard work to make sure the final victory required every one of the older and newer crew to be essential in some fashion, but I think they just about made it.
And almost as contrived to have a happy game of poker at the end, after Patrick Stewart quoted Brutus from Julius Caesar.
Did anyone else see the resemblance of queenie Borg's rotting ribcage with the Davros' ribcage from whichever WHO series it was? It could have been the same prop.
And then the Q bit came during the credits, seeming to dangle the possibility of a Star Trek Son of Picard series in front of us.
 
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The camaraderie might have run a bit too long at the end, here; but the fan service could not have been lavished on a more deserving crew. This may have been the last reunion opportunity for the aging TNG cast to gather around the card table.
My only objection to the series finale is the spin-off teasers. From what I've read, Star Trek: Legacy is unlikely to materialize soon, if ever. So, why promote it?
Beyond that, why raise the ever-obnoxious Q from the dead and continue the tedious tale of Humanity's trial? No, thanks.
Even if Captain Seven and her crew are approved for launch, the format seems like it would bear a curious resemblance to the well-received Strange New Worlds. I suspect that the proposed new spin-off would not debut before SNW had completed its run, slated to resume June 15.
 
It was certainly a dramatic and fitting finale - the Titan strafing the fleet, and the Enterprise D flying through the Borg cube. They did everything to play up expectations that as a last episode one or more major characters would die, and they did a great job of ramping up that tension - the scene with the Enterprise appearing over Picard, Riker, and Worf on its way out was superb.

But when you stop to think about it, the plot was all a little weak and contrived. The Borg allowed Picard and crew in, even though it was extremely vulnerable, and to stop the attack all they had to do was unplug Jack from the comms. And why was Jack the only person who could fit that role anyway? Also, how does a single space dock manage to survive a constant barrage by hundreds of capital ships? Also good to see that Jack experiences no guilt whatsoever for almost destroying humanity! :D

Even still, the whole sense of action and drama provided enough entertainment to not worry about all that.

Found the decision to rename the Titan odd - is there a reason for not having another Enterprise among all those hundreds of Federation ships?

Also, yes, the card scene at the end ran on a bit long, but bless 'em, I guess it was a worthy send off seeing as we're not expected to see these actors together again.

The Q appearance at the end - seemed a bit unnecessary. Jean-Luc wasn't on trial, humanity was.

The only thing about any sequel is that successful Trek has enjoyed a strong range of very different characters, so having 3 mavericks on the new Titan seems to miss that.

Overall, though, quibbles aside, this was a really great series and proper Trek. :)

EDIT: Forgot to mention: President Checkov!
 
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Among the many sins of the 2002 film Star Trek Nemesis is the fact that its box-office bombing killed the still-nascent plans for a fifth and final The Next Generation outing, one that would have been designed as a finale in the same way that Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country was for the original cast.

I have no reason to believe that this film is some great lost gem of Star Trek canon; it was being written by the same people who wrote the awful Nemesis, and it was set up to be a kind of Search for Spock retread about reviving Data and restoring the status quo. But its absence meant a lack of closure for the TNG crew—a story that wasn't allowed to end on its own terms.

So when Patrick Stewart got on a stage in 2018 to announce that "Jean-Luc Picard is back," it was exciting!
 
These endings are usually always too sentimental for me. I expected nothing less.
The camaraderie might have run a bit too long at the end,
I actually think they had a good balance between the that and completing the story.
when you stop to think about it, the plot was all a little weak and contrived.
Don't ask me about how they did what they did. It's all prime technobable now, which contridicts even earlier technobable. I've stopped worrying about it any longer (in Star Wars too) as it won't make it any more correct. I also don't enjoy spotting all the science errors and contadictions in the way that I once did. Either it is well written or it is not. It would need to be huge to take me out the story and think this isn't possible. This next one might have done that:
Also good to see that Jack experiences no guilt whatsoever for almost destroying humanity!
One thing I couldn't accept is not only Jack's ability to pick himself up, but all of the rest of the Star Fleet officers, who had one minute been Borg, out to annihilate all of humanity, and had killed people on demand, then the next minute were back to normal (with an apology and a hug!) Surely, they would need months of therapy. Data even gets two hours a day just because he can now "feel okay". It seemed as if the Transporter fix to remove all of the Borg inserted DNA was also somehow meant to remove all of the memories, but it clearly wouldn't work that way, and they've played on the repressed memories of Jean-Luv as Locutus for the last 35 years!

I quite liked the idea of seeing that crew in a new series, but they they had to go and add in Q at the end.
And then the Q bit came during the credits, seeming to dangle the possibility of a Star Trek Son of Picard series in front of us.
One of the things I had liked about last season (2) was the idea that we would never have to see Q again.

My only objection to the series finale is the spin-off teasers. From what I've read, Star Trek: Legacy is unlikely to materialize soon, if ever.
It's the first that I've heard of it. I didn't think much of the idea of Strange New Worlds but I liked that. I think that they missed their chance in the past to create new shows. The USS Excelsior under Captain Sulu would have made a good series too. But has there been too much Star Trek already and are there any new stories to tell. I think there must be.
So, why promote it?
If it is unlikely to happen, then why propmote it? Well, that's not hard in the world of social media. You get people talking about it in places like this. You encourage petitiions. You make an audience for it and wait until they make so much noise that it cannot be denied. That's what they did with Strange New Worlds. Spinning off with cast members that are already known makes it much more likely to be successful.

There is another old thread here: Voyager to Enterprise - a mistake? about whether a prequel was a mistake after Voyager. Both Voyager and Enterprise must have been hard to begin because both had a brand new cast on new ships in a new location/time. They both spent a lot of money on two-part openers, and they both largely squandered that by have pretty poor episodes following in the first season (well that's my 2¢). But it is a fact that most series took several seasons before they got into their own swing (if they were allowed to.) Spinning off with an established cast makes far more sense to me.

So. will that be the last time that we see the Last Generation on screen? How many times do we hear 'this is our final appearance'? If so then, this was a much better conclusion than 'All Good Things' TNG or their last film together.
 
Finally got round to watch this series. Liked the little cameos, especially Majel Barrett as the Enterprise D's computer and Walter Koenig as Anton Chekov (nice homage to Anton Yelchin as well as getting to hear Koenig again (though always preferred him as Bester in B5).

After all these years, I still feel that Worf is better away from the NG crew. He had better storylines in DS9 and he was better here with Raffi before they met up with the others.

Didn't buy that the old cloaking device was effective. Have to believe that it still works after so long. Also that Starfleet hadn't studied (or at least successfully) how to detect it in so long whereas in ST6, they rumbled the prototype cloak in the midst of battle.

No explanation (or I missed it) how so few people were able to fly the Enterprise D. We had an explanation in ST3, ie Scotty rigged the original Enterprise for automated systems (but not sufficient for combat).

What did Worf do to the Enterprise E?
 
Well, I am very late to this party, as always (only got around to season 3 when I discovered my step-daughter had a Paramount+ subscription).
All-in-all, it was thoroughly satisfying, soaked through to the core with the essence of Star Trek (shots / attitudes / music), unlike the execrable season 2. A satisfying finale, if a little too drenched in fan service (of which there has probably been a bit too much). This rescued the legacy of the character, and the TNG show, from what would have been an inauspicious end had it stopped at Season 2. And proof, were it ever needed, that it really isn't that hard to make a successful show: give the people what they want!
 

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