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[flagged] Patrick Stewart Returns as Jean-Luc Picard for a New Star Trek Series (techcrunch.com)
206 points by hdivider on Aug 5, 2018 | hide | past | web | favorite | 85 comments

My god, Patrick Stewart looks like he hasn't aged in 30 years.

On another matter, does anyone else wonder who at TechCrunch thought it was a good idea to make scrolling to the bottom of the page be an automatic redirect away from the article?

The TechCrunch redirect behaviour is so insane that I had to try it a few times to really believe that it was happening. I am flabbergasted that anyone actually thought that was a good idea.

The X overlaying the text is a nice touch, too.

One of the benefits of early male pattern baldness. :)

What are some others please

Take off a fuzzy hat crackling with static in the dead of winter -- not a single hair out of place!

Roll out of bed, realize you didn't set your alarm and have to be out of the house in 2 minutes -- that's ok, just get up and go, the hair-mussing properties of sleep have no power over you!

The nasty mix of rust and oil that you get from working on the underside of a car can't get stuck in hair you don't have!

I would still choose hair over no hair, but that's only because its single redeeming quality is a big one: being attractive. On most other metrics, being bald is actually pretty great.

Looking like Captain Picard

Toilet plunger on head for easy narwhal/unicorn costume

Easier application of sunscreen.


You're saving on haircuts and shampoo.

Shampoo yes, haircuts no same cost as unbald people :(

I don’t understand, I’ve (mostly) been using an electric beard/body hair trimmer to shave my head for the last 11 years.

Cost at a barber shop. If you go to one the cost for a haircut is the same for a man whether he is bald or not. And I get a #2 clipper all over too done in two minutes $25 plus tip.

Sure at home with an electric razor would be cheap but I tried and I can't get reach the back of my neck very well and it looks bad.

I've been using scissors for free for the past 14

Immune to lice. Easy to spot ticks.

No dandruff.

Having a ready made Halloween costume with a see-through garbage bag: condom

It's widely assumed that Stewart made some kind of deal with Satan, sometime around the filming of Dune, whereby he traded his youth for immortality. He thus looked about ten or twenty years older than he was at the time, but promptly stopped aging altogether.

The life-extending properties of the Spice are what did it. Same for Sting and Kyle Maclachlan.

> My god, Patrick Stewart looks like he hasn't aged in 30 years.

To be fair, he looked a bit older than his actual late 40s when TNG started.

You should look him up from about ten years prior to TNG. He was in several episodes of I, Claudius back in 1976, thereabouts, and aside from the hair, he STILL didn't look much different.

He sounds old though.

I’m surprised he’s 78 but not too worried that that’ll weaken his performance. According to IMDB, Stewart lost 21 pounds for the movie “Logan” [0] in order to portray a sickly Prof. Xavier. Dropping weight as a wrestler was incredibly painful even as a HS wrestler, so I think he must be very healthy for a man in his late seventies to even consider such a regimen.

If anything, Stewart’s old age will be an asset. The final TNG movies had him acting as an action hero; now the new show will be inclined to have more cerebral conflicts.

[0] https://m.imdb.com/title/tt3315342/trivia?ref_=m_tt_trv_trv

The best part about Star Trek The Next Generation was the fantastic writing, the focus on science and the guidance of young viewers throughout the series. I bet there were many people inspired to go into science as a result of the show both TNG and TOS.

As much as I enjoyed the other Treks and current Trek they seem almost self-absorbed, caring more for looks and ratings (I guess they have to) than story telling caring about the viewers. DS9 was pretty good but the producers made stupid, spiteful changes near the end, same for Enterprise.

You have to wonder what has changed that doesn't allow a series like Star Trek to be itself and instead cater to people seeking only explosions, swearing and banal story lines.

I've actually enjoyed Discovery quite a lot. I think it's easy to see the old series through rose tinted glasses and forget the extremely subpar episodes, focusing only on the best. In my opinion Discovery has been inconsistent, but far less so than, say, the first season of TNG. That said, I'm still irate they set it in the past. There's no reason for it - even the tech that forms a major plot point feels generations beyond Voyager!

I hope this new Picard show is something entirely different. Given that it'll air alongside Discovery I see no reason for it to be another "explore the galaxy" setup.

Does Discovery eventually stop being Action Trek? I watched the first episodes, and it seemed to be grimdark filled with lousy people.

TNG showed an evolved mankind, valuing such obscure things as kindness, non-violent solutions, and generally not being asshole.

It doesn’t. I’m 35 and have seen TNG three times in my lifetime. The last time I saw Discovery immediately afterwards. My fiancé insisted on stopping the series. I pulled myself through, alone. It got worse every episode. One of the worst series I have ever seen.

I've only seen a few episodes due to my viewing options. In Canada it's on broadcast TV but it is bumped sometimes or I wasn't available.

The TV station also streams episodes but it's at 480p or lower on the Web and it's interrupted every five minutes with three minute long ads, plus you can't jump ahead or back. It's also available on CraveTV streaming service but that streaming company is terribly buggy.

But I can see myself liking Discovery (I've heard never call it STD) if I can get into a pattern of being able to watch it in sequence.

Rewatching tng from end to end I found myself disappointed that the cast didn't know what they were doing in seasons 1&2 and seemed like they were phoning it in in season 7...

There are some truly good episodes in TNG... One of my favorites is "the first duty" which apparently was at some point required viewing at the United States air Force academy.

Overall though I like ds9 better because it's a more "honest" look at humanity... But darkness aside there's kind of an optimistic broad character arc/thesis where the good guys each in their own way is on a journey overcoming impostor syndrome (sisko, Kira, odo, Bashir, ezri, Jake, quark, rom, garak, and nog all fit this model to some degree, and even damar when he becomes a good guy basically fits this model), and the bad guys all are brought down by their classical toxic leadership attributes (dukat, Winn, weyoun, FC, but also minors like admiral leyton).

One of the things I like about TNG is that different people love different episodes.

"The First Duty" is one of my least favourite episodes. I love the goofiness and variety of the first two seasons. I like Pulaski. I like it when Wesley saves the ship. I don't particularly like "The Best of Both Worlds".

"Who Watches the Watchers" would be one of my absolute favourite episodes.

WWtW is pretty much my favorite episode of TNG. My favorite goofy episode of trek, though, would have to be "take me out to the holosuite", because it turns the goofy underdog sports movie on its head.

(incidentally, thinking about the episode, sisko's interaction with his team serves as a microcosm of the thesis I have about DS9 as a whole in my parent comment)

Not a fan of dwelling on old characters, but at least this moves the Trek timeline forward.

The latest episode of Trek - as the fictional timeline goes - Nemesis - is 16 years old.

It's criminal that a franchise whose overarching theme is optimistic futurism has been looking backwards for so long.

It boggles my mind why creatives seem to always think that the audience wants "something different". You had a good thing going. Change up a few elements, improve a dew things, but give us more of the awesome formula that created a phenomenon in the first place. I would hate to see Stewart's latest effort go down the same drain as Enterprise and Discovery.

Audiences want something good. TNG added up to 130 hours of TV. Any team of writers and actors would become burned out after telling such an enormous quantity of stories. Die-hard fans might always clamour for more, but they're the first to complain when a franchise is milked dry.

There's a reason why "jumping the shark" is a trope. No matter how popular and compelling something might be, there's always a point of diminishing returns. Once you've trashed a franchise, it's very difficult to rebuild; If you end on a high note, you leave the audience wanting more.

Rick Berman and Brandon Tartikoff saw what was being attempted with Babylon 5 and recognised the future of television - deep, complex story arcs that span across seasons. They realised that while TNG still had some mileage left in it, they had an opportunity to use familiar elements in a new and exciting way. The results were, in my humble opinion, the absolute pinnacle of the Star Trek canon.

Different times. He stated that he’s only now excited about returning to the role, and hadn’t previously been the last 20 years, because he sees how bleak many people’s outlook is about the world right now. He himself has uncharacteristically begun watching the TNG episodes for a dose of hope. So I think we will find the federation in a state of dis-unification (earth exiting the union? immigration problems?) and perhaps even Picard struggling to find and build hope.

That and the fact that his last popular role was an animated poo, which probably made a return to Trek seem like a big step up.

He is also hilarious as the CIA director in American Dad.

> He himself has uncharacteristically begun watching the TNG

Yeah. Even while I'm deluged in an ocean of pretty dman good modern tv, I find myself throwing on an old episode of TNG from time to time. It's still a joy to watch.

Different people want different things.

There are plenty of folks who will read every book in endless genre series and complain when some favorite TV program gets canceled after 10 years.

Others like me are pretty much ready to move in from a series after 5 years or so no matter how good it is. I just lose interest.

You can't take the sky from me.

It was the former fans that bright us TNG in the first place - constantly fighting for more trek throughout the 70s, to be rewarded with Trek's golden era from 87 onwards.

I was just watching Firefly yesterday. Thanks for the little moment of joy.

Nah. It may or may not hit the mark, but it's always better to see great artists strike out for new territory and new things than just serving over rehashes of earlier creative exploration.

(I grew up watching TNG and love it, btw, fwiw, etc. etc.)

This fan reaction always surprises me. It strikes me as both "looking through rose glasses" and "get off my lawn". A story needs to grow. Enterprise and Discovery both kept the cute almost naive idealism of The Next Generation, but added in exciting new ways. Both of them had campy bad episodes, but that is also true of The Next Generation.

You may not see him at all if the project is "TNG take 2". He probably doesn't want to do it. I'd much rather see an extension to the story with a different angle than nothing at all.

I enjoyed Enterprise, I am enjoying Discovery.

Discovery isn't scratching the same itch as TNG, it has its flaws but I'm still enjoying it for what it is. The Orville is pretty good too.

I love Patrick Stewart in Trek but, for me, his finest piece of acting will always be the quadruple take masterclass:


Finally, I hope this has a hopeful version of the future like TNG

Yes, though I’m enjoying ST:Discovery, WestWorld, and The Expanse, I really miss optimistic sci-fi.

Is there anything like that out there now that I’m missing?

The Star Trek-clone "The Orville" is just that - with some added Seth Macfarlane humor.

I expected absolutely nothing from it but ended up really enjoying it. Only one season out so far.

Orville is clearly made by someone who loves star trek. It's a comedy but it has good stories that could have been TNG episodes.

His love of trek has been life long - he even made a fanfilm as a teenager! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sn_Sgcxg5PQ

I also like that while The Orville is set in a post-scarcity society, the characters aren't the shining bastions of humanity as Star Trek characters tend to be. They're basically just doing their best, and have some very recognizable flaws.

I got halfway through the first season of that, but I didn’t enjoy the the humor, the barely-one-level-deep moralizing, or the lack of believability I felt the plots had. As examples, that episode with the social media thing, or the one-gender planet...

Did you (or anyone else now a fan) agree with my feelings initially, and find it got better?

The Orville. I feel like it's the spiritual successor to Gene's original vision.

Me 2. I think that's the whole reason Patrick Stewart signed back up...to portray positive SciFi to counter the dark times.

I'm extremely excited at the possibility for a new "Measure of a Man", or "The Drumhead". These are episodes that have positively shaped the minds of many.

If someone succeeds in making a workable screenplay then the Culture novels from the late Iain M Banks are perfect.

Amazon is making a Culture series (starting with Consider Phlebas): https://www.theverge.com/2018/2/21/17035618/amazon-culture-s...

I'm betting this will take the form of a clipshow where old Picard and Riker get drunk in a vineyard and remember the good old days.

...available on CBS’ online subscription/original content service, CBS All Access.

Yeah, another subscription service. Sorry Jean-Luc, you've been assimilated for real this time.

Isn't that what cable was? Only this one you can buy for a month, binge, and cancel. It isn't all that bad.

TNG was over the air.

We're in a strange phase right now where these individual companies are creating content and you have to subscribe to each one. It's somewhere between cable where you pay one company for access to a whole lot, and paying for individual productions. Everyone thinks they can be the go-to place if they just produce some good stuff that you can get only from them. For me it's just too much bother, and if it say "CBS" I'm kinda wondering why it's not OTA in the first place.

I'll pick it up when if/when it's on blueray or <gasp> DVD.

They know OTA is dead and are trying to position themselves to not be beholden to Netflix, Hulu...etc, although that would be easier on us.

Meta: Someone tried posting this same article yesterday and it was flagged. Now it's not flagged this time. Hacker News herd mentality?


Maybe the arc will be him talking down an evil Wesley Crusher who is ravaging the federation in his mind controlled hyper warp ship :-).

More seriously I wonder how members of TNG feel about this move. The original voyage cast got 7 movies the TNG cast got 4, and the Abrahms crew has at least 3 movies (probably 4 if IMDB is to be believed)

So the cynic in me thinks this is just a grab at trying to save the Discovery series from an early demise (like the Enterprise series) by trying to slot in a character from a successful show. This worked at least once with ST:DS9 after all.

He is not joining Discovery it is going to be a new series.

I'm quite surprised at this to be honest. I saw Patrick outside the Old Vic in London last year when he attended the Theatre Awards, and he looked very frail. Maybe it was a temporary thing that has now got better, but didn't expect to see him in another big movie.

How does this fit into the new timeline that the Abrams reboot creates? Will the new Picard series be in the TNG timeline?

The JJ Abrams movies have never been in the same timeline as the TV shows so the new show will be in the same timeline as TNG

Are the Abrams movies even Star Trek? Feels nothing like ST.

Glad others agree.

Abrams Trek is like watching a football game; Roddenberry Trek was like watching a chess match. Both can be entertaining, but they are certainly very different things.

I was too young for Voyager or even Enterprise. I was introduced to the Trek through JJ Abrams movies. Later when I watched Enterprise, Voyager and the Jean-luc movies, I did realize why people criticize JJ movies. However, they still do a good job of introducing new people to the Star Trek Universe. Considering the revival of Star Wars, I do feel Star Trek could use some new fans.

They are action movies. Star trek was never about action.

This has always been Star Trek's dichotomy. Many ships called Enterprise have been blown up (in a permanent, non-time travel magic way), and it happened in the movies.

The movies are action. The series are where the characters and universe are built.

Just messing up a ship doesn't make it action. For a canonical example, see the Titanic.

Star Trek movies are like if the Titanic had to fight off the combined fleets of all WW1 and WW2 powers.

There's a reason the ships get blown up.

I said when the first Abrahms Star Trek came out that it was one of the best Star Wars movies in years.

I guess someone at Disney agreed with me...

The Trek movies haven't been like the show for a long time. I'm no huge fan of the Abrams movies, but it's not as if Nemesis was some cerebral voyage.

Not only a different timeline, a different universe with different physics. E.g. you can see events in one star system in real time with the naked eye from a planet in another. He does the the same in the Star Wars reboot

What timeline is Discovery in then?

Discovery is in the prime timeline. The JJ one is an inferior one. Discovery is set almost 100 years after the events of Enterprise. You might have noticed references to Captain Archer.

Discovery is set before all of that, so for now it is prime

I bet it's a smaller role where he (more or less) plays Boothby.

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