Star Trek: Lower Decks just wrapped up its first season, and though there was initially a lot of backlash against it, fan response has improved considerably over the weeks and there’s now tons of positivity surrounding the series. The good news is that season 2 is already plowing full steam ahead and showrunner Mike McMahan has teased a little about what we can expect from it while speaking with StarTrek.com.
To start with, episode 6, “Much Ado About Boimler,” introduced Captain Amina Ramsey, who had a fun dynamic with her old friend Ensign Beckett Mariner. In this new interview, McMahan dropped the bombshell that the pair were “probably” lovers during their Academy days and when asked to clarify, the EP explained why the writers didn’t make this explicit on screen but also promised that Mariner’s sexuality will be further explored next time.
“Yeah. We weren’t explicit about it, because most of the relationships in this show are familial or friendship love. It’s not physical love. That character showing up, the story we’re telling about them has nothing to do with any previous relationships they’ve had. For me and for the writers as we were making this, we didn’t intentionally mean for anybody to be strictly heteronormative or straight or cis. Every Starfleet officer is probably at the baseline bisexual, in a way. That being said, I am not the most amazing person at writing those kind of stories. I think we get a little bit better about it in the second season.”
McMahan then went on to stress that he’s committed to ensuring that the show is more about “inclusiveness” going forward and admitted that he regrets not making Mariner’s sexuality clearer in season 1. But at least this is something that will be fixed when the series returns for its sophomore run.
“It is. It’s something I think we need to be better about. If there’s anything I can say about inclusiveness — whether it’s about sex or gender or race or anything — is that I know that I can always learn more and be better about it, and I’m always trying to do that. This is one of those cases where we could have done a better job of explicitly stating the things that the writers always knew about Mariner. It seeps in there in little ways, which even irritates me even more, like you start off the season with Mariner saying, “Whoa, she’s like the hottest girl on the ship, are you nervous?” — that’s one of her first lines. That doesn’t put a stake in the ground, which I wish we had done a little bit more explicitly. It’s always a learning experience. We’re going to be trying to be better about it. And we are more explicit about it in the second season.”
Of course, the best part about the finale was seeing those cameos from Jonathan Frakes and Marina Sirtis as Riker and Deanna Troi. McMahan has already confirmed that Frakes – though not Sirtis – will be back in season 2, following Boimler hopping over to Riker’s ship, the U.S.S. Titan. And when asked by StarTrek.com if we can expect any additional Next Generation stars to appear in season 2, he gave a very exciting answer.
“I would say, feels like a pretty good chance of it,” he said.
You can catch up on Star Trek: Lower Decks season 1 on CBS All Access. Meanwhile, Star Trek: Discovery season 3 premieres on the service this Thursday, October 15th.