At last, the first trailer for Star Trek: Picard, Sir Patrick Stewart’s much-anticipated return as Jean-Luc Picard, arrived last week and, in doing so, gave us our first look at the upcoming CBS All Access TV show. The minute-long teaser kept its cards close to its chest and mostly just gave us some shots of Picard’s family vineyard – not that fans minded – but one line of the narration may have told us more than we initially thought.
What Picard has been up to since we last saw him in 2002’s Star Trek: Nemesis is alluded to in the trailer by an unknown female voiceover. We learn that he was promoted to admiral and his most heroic act was how he “commanded the greatest rescue armada in history.” It’s hinted that, despite Picard’s best intentions, this didn’t go well and caused him to leave Starfleet and retire to his native France.
It’s difficult to say what went wrong, but an understanding of the wider Trek universe could tell us what sort of rescue mission it was that Picard was leading. Exec producer Alex Kurtzman has previously revealed that the show will be set following the “dissolution of the Romulan empire.” This must be a consequence of the destruction of the planet Romulus in 2009’s Star Trek movie.
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Fans will know that Spock’s attempts to prevent the destruction took him – and twisted Romulan captain Nero – back in time, thereby starting the Kevlin timeline of the modern films. But Picard will continue this event from the point of view of the Prime universe. Meaning that it’s likely Picard’s rescue armada was an attempt to save the Romulan people after a star turning supernova destroyed their homeworld.
Though he fought the Romulans many times in The Next Generation, Picard never lost sight of his hope to bring peace between the race and the Federation. But will his optimism and faith been tested by the tragic events that have unfolded since? Star Trek: Picard will reveal all when it arrives sometime in late 2019.