At San Diego Comic-C0n 2019, Star Trek beamed into Hall H for a 90-minute presentation titled "Enter The Star Trek Universe" - and here's everything that was revealed about the final frontier. The event was divided into three panels: Star Trek: Discovery season 3, which included a new series of Short Treks; animated series Star Trek: Lower Decks; and the highly-anticipated new live-action show Star Trek: Picard.
The Star Trek: Discovery panel featured star Sonequa Martin-Green, who portrays Commander Michael Burnham, and executive producers Alex Kurtzman, Michelle Paradise, and Heather Kadin. The flagship Star Trek series of CBS All-Access recently ended its highly-regarded second season, which became the most popular streaming show in the world, thanks in part to the addition of Anson Mount as Captain Pike and Ethan Peck as Spock. Star Trek: Lower Decks is a new cartoon series which heralds the franchise's bid to expand into comedy; executive producer Mike McMahan (Rick & Morty) led the Lower Decks panel. Last but not least, Star Trek: Picard marked the return of Patrick Stewart to the role of Jean-Luc Picard. Stewart was joined at the panel by castmembers Alison Pill, Michelle Hurd, Evan Evagora, Isa Briones, Santiago Cabrera, Harry Treadaway, and showrunner Michael Chabon, as well as some familiar surprise guests: Jonathan Del Arco, Jeri Ryan, and Brent Spiner!
"Enter The Star Trek Universe" proved to be a showcase for the ambitious new vision of the franchise spearheaded by Kurtzman. In May, the Star Trek Global Franchise Group was established to develop more Star Trek properties that will appeal to different generations of audiences. Star Trek is now the top brand of CBS All-Access and the streaming service hopes to eventually have a new Star Trek series at every point of the calendar year. While the panels lacked info on other previously announced Star Trek series like the Section 31 spinoff, Star Trek boldly flaunted its optimistic future at Comic-Con. Here's everything we learned.
Star Trek: Discovery Season 3
Not much was revealed about Star Trek: Discovery season 3, which is set nearly 1,000 years in the future (the furthest the franchise has ever explored) after the ending of Star Trek: Discovery season 2. However. Sonequa Martin-Green dropped a compelling hint that Michael Burnham didn't lead the U.S.S. Discovery to the planet Terralysium as she intended.
Meanwhile, David Ajala, who played Manchester Black in Supergirl season 4, is joining the cast as Cleveland "Book" Booker, whom the actor described as "a bit of a rulebreaker." Star Trek: Discovery season 3 has only begun shooting and won't release until later in 2020, so that was all the panel hinted about what's to come. However, Alex Kurtzman did ask the audience if they wanted a Pike and Spock series set on the Enterprise, and his sly reply to their enthusiastic response was, "We'll think about it." After the panel, we got a look at the first photos from Star Trek: Discovery season 3, which show Burnham meeting Book in the future.
There was a lot of exciting news about Short Treks. Six more mini-episodes are coming to CBS All-Access and two of them will be animated shorts. As revealed in the trailer released at the panel, three of the Short Treks will involve Captain Pike, Spock, and Number One (Rebecca Romijn), who are all returning after winning fans over in Star Trek: Discovery season 2. One of the Short Treks will be a prequel to Star Trek: Picard that will set the stage for that series, and another will be about the discovery of Tribbles. The titles of this new wave of Short Treks are: "Ask Not", "Children of Mars", "The Girl Who Made The Stars", "The Trouble With Edward", "Ephaim And Dot", and "Q&A".
The first four Short Treks released in late 2018 and early 2019 ended up providing crucial info that illuminated major plot points of Star Trek: Discovery season 2, such as the story of how Saru left his homeworld to join Starfleet and the introduction of Po (Yadira Guevara-Prip) the alien genius who played a key role in the Star Trek: Discovery season 2 finale. No doubt, there will be plenty of hints about the upcoming Star Trek series contained in the next wave of Short Treks that will make them a can't-miss for fans.
Star Trek: Lower Decks
Next was Star Trek: Lower Decks, which also premieres in 2020. Executive producer Mike McMahan revealed lots of info about his new animated half-hour comedy series. Lower Decks is set in 2380, one year after the events of Star Trek: Nemesis, which is also the timeframe after the return of the U.S.S. Voyager from the Delta Quadrant. The setting of the series will be the new California-class U.S.S. Cerritos, one of the "least important" ships in Starfleet that acts as a support vessel for better starships.
As for the crew, the series will focus on four Ensigns: Beckett Mariner (Trondy Newman), who is a no-nonsense go-getter, Brad Broimler (Jack Quaid), a by-the-book-ensign who gets in his own way, Tendi (Noel Wells), a huge Starfleet fan who is excited to serve on the ship, and Rutherford (Eugene Cordero), an engineer who has trouble problem solving. Meanwhile, the bridge crew of the U.S.S. Cerritos are Dr. T'ana (Gillian Vigman), Lieutenant Shaxs (Fred Tatasciore), Commander Ransom (Jerry O'Connell), and Captain Freeman (Dawnn Lewis).
Star Trek: Picard
Easily the most anticipated moment of the panel was Patrick Stewart taking the stage to talk about Star Trek: Picard. He was joined by other cast members and executive producers, who all spoke about what it was like to work with the legendary actor. In the days leading up to the panel, we learned more about Star Trek: Picard: the series will be serialized like Star Trek: Discovery, unlike the episodic Star Trek: The Next Generation. The retired Admiral will go back to space to fulfill a specific mission and "right an injustice," but he won't rejoin Starfleet and he won't have the authority he was accustomed to having. And yes, Picard has a dog, which he amusingly named Number One.
Thankfully, the Star Trek: Picard trailer was released which revealed the new characters and new information about the plot, which involves the Romulans conducting illicit experiments on former members of the Borg Collective, and they somehow even captured a Borg Cube. This led to the biggest fan-favorite surprises: Star Trek: Voyager's Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan), Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes, who is also directing episodes), Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis), Hugh the Borg (Jonathan Del Arco), and Data (Brent Spiner) - who is back from the dead - are all going to appear in Star Trek: Picard, which premieres on CBS All-Access in early 2020.