December 8, 2021

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[Review] Star Trek Picard: a good series for franchise beginners?

We’re watching the pilot for Star Trek: Picard, available this Friday on Amazon Prime Video. With the stakes to bring together newcomers as well as fans of the franchise without reservation, will the series manage to get a breath of fresh air on Star Trek?

26 years after Star Trek: The Next Generation, and 18 years after his last appearance as Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek: Nemesis, Sir Patrick Stewart has once again taken on his iconic role in Star Trek: Picard on Amazon Prime Video. We find him where he appears at the end of The New Generation, in France, with his faithful dog in his castle surrounded by vineyards.

However, a decent remnant of the former Starfleet captain ends when he loses his cool in front of a pressing reporter during a TV interview but also, and above all, when a young woman named Dahj (and played by Isa Briones) comes into his life. Quickly, this enigmatic young woman reminds Jean-Luc of certain bittersweet moments in his past, especially when he understands that he has a strong relationship with an old friend. It was from this moment that Jean-Luc Picard would decide to act, following his instincts and suspicions towards the Federation.

This is how Star Trek: Picard begins, in an atmosphere that is largely tinged with nostalgia. This is very clear in the first scene where Jean-Luc is playing poker with his friend, Android Data, on their ship. Throughout this pilot, Picard’s guilt over the death of his former friend will be the thread that should please the Trekkies, the sweet nickname given to fans of the irreparable franchise. However, Star Trek: Picard is not just the umpteenth sequel that is only intended to please fans. If the rest of the series remains to be discovered, this pilot fulfills its goal of bringing fans and newbies together from the franchise (this is really your case). If the references are plentiful, this series does a perfect job of providing, through its staging, the information that makes it possible to immerse oneself in body and soul in the saga’s densely packed universe.

This approach was facilitated by the outstanding achievements of this pilot. Variety of decorations, dynamism of plans, lighting effects… We are right in the current canon of the successful SF Blockbuster. And this Star Trek: Picard aesthetic is not without reminiscent of JJ Abrams’ atypical style – this famous anamorphic look and blazing lens – even though the filmmakers are completely irresponsible. We’re staying in spite of everything in continuity because JJ Abrams has signed on to two films from the franchise, and that Star Trek: Picard host Alex Kurtzman was responsible for writing them, prior to launching the Star Trek: Discovery series, then this new series branded Amazon Prime. Videos.

Then what to say about Sir Patrick Stewart, once again stunning in his role as Jean Luc Picard. After more than twenty years since Star Trek: The Next Generation, the British actor now embodies this retired old man, closer to the wise old man than he ever was. Now 92 years old in the series (the actor will be celebrating his 80th birthday this year), Picard seems to have earned his age until he passes his turn during breathless action scenes, giving everyone a feeling of incredible realism. That the series bears its name is a beautiful tribute to the iconic character of the franchise, without excluding the other characters, which in turn is a breath of fresh air to the story.

Château de Picard in France, then Paris, to the Japanese island of Okinawa. The work plunges us into a universe where transportation makes it easy to reach distant galaxies, but we’ll turn a blind eye to this lightning trip on Earth… In the end, Picard’s Star Trek remains a pleasant surprise, even if it will. appropriate to ”wait for the rest of the show to definitively judge the series, and in particular to discover new characters in greater detail. Available today on Amazon Prime Video, Star Trek: Picard will be revealed for weeks with weekly episodes.