Wil Wheaton, who appeared as Wesley Crusher in Star Trek: The Next Generation, payed homage this week to the show by suiting up as Commander Riker for a 1980s-themed costume party. Wheaton went with the choice of Will Riker from the third season of the classic sci-fi series, and certainly looks the part, even down to the beard. The reason behind the costume was Wheaton’s wife’s 50th birthday party, but it also gives us a nice idea of how the actor might look if he joined the cast of Star Trek: Picard.
Commenting on the Instagram photo, which you can see below, Wheaton explained:
“Last night, we had a 50th birthday party for @annewheaton. She requested an 80s costume party, so I went as Commander Riker from season three of TNG.”
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If Wheaton did return to the Star Trek universe, he’d join a range of former Enterprise crew members, as well as other figures from the franchise like Jeri Ryan. Indeed, LeVar Burton has expressed a desire for the whole Next Generation crew to play some role in Star Trek: Picard, although the logistics of getting everyone together may make it difficult.
Wheaton has previously spoken about whether he’ll be coming back for Star Trek: Picard, and while keen to do so, did not see it as being a realistic possibility. A Wesley Crusher spinoff has also been played down. Furthermore, Star Trek: Picard producer Alex Kurtzman has responded to casting speculation by emphasizing that there’d need to be a good narrative reason for bringing back old faces to the show.
We do know that Star Trek: Picard will draw on some of the classic storylines from The Next Generation, including the Borg, as well as how Picard deals with the aftermath of the events in Star Trek: Nemesis. Filming on the series is also wrapping in October 2019, so there’s not much time for Wheaton to be confirmed as making a guest appearance in this season. The show is due to launch on CBS All Access sometime in 2020 though, so we’ll be keeping an eye out for more plot details as shooting progresses.