During the 2020 lockdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, CBS All Access streamed “Star Trek: Lower Decks,” which became incredibly successful with both classic and new Trek fans. Thanks to the era in which the show takes place (the comfortable 24th Century, post “Star Trek: Nemesis,”) there are names and characters familiar to almost everyone who can drop by for a cameo or guest appearance.
William T. Riker (Jonathan Frakes), Deanna Troi (Marina Sirtis), Q (John de Lancie) all popped in for an appearance during last season. The show’s creator, Mike McMahan, packs in references to nearly every era of Trek, forcing fans to watch the show 2-3 times to catch all the “Easter Eggs.”
McMahan says that this show is a mix of “serious Trek and silly Trek.”
“Because if you’re on a Starfleet ship, you don’t know if you’re gonna encounter the Jem’Hadar or a guy who traps you in a game,” McMahan said during the ComicCon@Home stream.
Now, thanks to a teaser trailer released today for ComicCon@Home, fans around the world got a sneak peek at the upcoming second season of “Lower Decks.” The show begins airing on Paramount+ on August 12. The following is an attempt to break down the Easter Eggs, references, and spoilery-secrets that fans learned by watching the teaser:
Boimler Is Back
The trailer begins with Ensign Mariner (Tawny Newsome) again using her patented snark. The main “Lower Decks” characters are abandoned on a satellite of some kind. But note that Ensign Boimler (Jack Quaid) is back with the others, which means his time on the U.S.S. Titan must be short-lived. In the final episode of last season, Boimler was transferred to Captain Riker’s ship.
The Search for Shaxs
Fans might remember that the grouchy Bajoran Lieutenant Shaxs (Fred Tatasciore) died in that same episode, “No Small Parts.” Fans can see that he’s back and part of the command team for the U.S.S. Cerritos. And don’t forget that the Counselor Miglivo (the green bird) is back too.
A “Picard” reference
Fans are treated to a second of Mariner and Ensign Tendi (Noël Wells) walking in Las Vegas at night. No — that’s not Vegas! It’s Freecloud, the same place where Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and the crew of the La Sirena got into trouble during the episode “Stardust City Rag.”
“Temba, His Arms Wide”
Everyone seems to love the episode of “The Next Generation,” where Picard is stranded with a humanoid alien, and they can’t communicate with each other. Known as “Darmok,” this standout from the fifth season episode was actor Paul Winfield, who also starred in “The Wrath of Khan.”
Winfield’s character, Capt. Dathon was a member of the Tamarian species. And it looks like the crew aboard the Cerritos is getting their own Tamarian. McMahan has done it again — bringing back a classic character type, which will undoubtedly create maximum laughs.
Another scene reveals that Ensign Mariner will battle with a female Cardassian, which brings another classic race into “Lower Decks.” By the look of the background, it appears that they are on a Cardassian ship… or it could be that they are aboard a Cardassian-built space station!
The trailer teased new alien races for the team to encounter, and a green “collector” could be one of them. During this brief moment, we see that the crew must battle in this very human-looking room. Ensign Rutherford (Eugene Cordero) and Jet (Marcus Henderson) are among those in the fight. Later we see Tendi get “pooped out” of a red and orange slug. That’s certainly new, too.
A Very Scary Nausicaan
The look of creatures on “Star Trek” do evolve, and it appears that McMahan chose to use the latest (and nastiest) version of the Nausicaans. These dudes have Mariner and Tendi surrounded in some sort of situation involving gold-pressed Latinum. This looks like they may be on Freecloud.
Jeffrey Combs Returns
The guy who has been in the middle of so many episodes of 1990s Trek finally makes his way to “Lower Decks.” His unmistakable voice is powering an evil computer of some sort. It looks like HAL from “2001,” only a bit smaller and portable. Will Jeffrey Combs’ evil computer be the new “Badgey?”
Yes! Yet another name from classic Trek returns to “Lower Decks.” Thanks to McMahan’s love for those collectible “Next Gen” plates, Paris (Robert Duncan McNeill) makes a cameo on a new plate. His inspirational words inspire Boimler to keep fighting… in a Jefferies Tube.
Picard’s Dune Buggy
Everyone remembers from “Nemesis” the ‘Jeep’ that Picard drove around the desert. It appears that Boimler and Mariner got their hands on one and are driving it around inside a mall on Freecloud. And, they are also in their Starfleet dress whites, which is what Picard and company wore to Riker and Troi’s wedding in “Nemesis.”
The greatest enemy of the Federation is back — and they all look angry. Though we don’t know who has been assimilated, someone has the classic Locutus of Borg look going. Hopefully, it’s not Boimler, just some random “red shirt.”
Family is Love
Like last season, it appears that Mariner and Captain Freeman (Dawnn Lewis) are not getting along. At the very end of the teaser, Freeman has Mariner hauled back to the brig for some infraction. Likely, it is for not following orders, like in the episode “Moist Vessel.”
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