The voice cast and character designs are revealed for the animated comedy series Star Trek: Lower Decks, along with new details about the show’s ship. As CBS All Access continues in its quest to feature year-round Star Trek content, the streamer in October 2018 announced it was developing an all-new animated series set in the Star Trek universe. In a twist, the new series would not follow the adventures of a heroic starship crew a la nearly every other Trek series, but instead would be a comedy featuring the unsung starship workers who do the day-to-day jobs that allow others to perform the heroic deeds.
Entitled Star Trek: Lower Decks, the new comedy series about the forgotten grunt workers of Trek is being developed by Mike McMahan, a huge Trek fan and former writer for Adult Swim’s breakout animated comedy series Rick and Morty. Few details about the series had been revealed going into this weekend’s San Diego Comic-Con, but Saturday’s Star Trek panel did result in a few juicy pieces of news, including the revelation that Lower Decks is set during The Next Generation era of Trek. It was also revealed that the show will revolve around four ensigns working on an insignificant Starfleet ship (so don’t look for an animated Jean-Luc Picard to make any cameos).
In addition to the above bits of news coming out of Comic-Con, CBS All Access made some official announcements about other Lower Decks details, including the voice cast. Heading up that cast is Tawny Newsome (Brockmire) as Ensign Mariner, Jack Quaid (The Boys) as Ensign Boimler, Noël Wells (Master of None) as Ensign Tendi and Eugene Cordero (Kong: Skull Island) as Ensign Rutherford. The four ensigns are all assigned to the U.S.S. Cerritos, which is described as a new class of starship called a California class that operates in a support role. The bridge crew of the Cerritos includes Jerry O’Connell (Billions) as Commander Ransom, Dawnn Lewis (Veronica Mars) as Captain Freeman, Fred Tatasciore (American Dad!) as Lieutenant Shaxs and Gillian Vigman (New Girl) as Dr. T’Ana. CBS.com offers up some first looks at the new characters which can be seen in the space below:
It was officially revealed that Lower Decks takes place during the Next Generation era, but even if that hadn't been made clear, it would have been obvious from the uniforms that the show is indeed set during the same time period as TNG. The designs are not particularly far out, except perhaps for Dr. T'Ana who appears to be some kind of grumpy cat alien, which could be a source of a lot of comedy. The cast is indeed diverse, and includes a black female captain. There is also the obligatory green female alien (though this time presumably the character will get to do more than the female green aliens traditionally featured on Trek).
These of course are only the main cast members, and there will probably be a lot more outrageous aliens featured on the show. Tone-wise, Star Trek: Lower Decks will likely be pretty wacky, given that it's being headed up by a man who worked on Rick and Morty, the most outrageous animated sci-fi show in the galaxy. The 10-episode first season is set to premiere in 2020.