The Orville reunited two Star Trek: The Next Generation stars on the set of the episode “Sanctuary.” The episode aired April 11th and dealt with Moclan cultural issues surrounding gender. The discovery of a colony of escaped female Moclans threatened to lead to Moclus exiting the Planetary Union.
The conflict was made personal by focusing on Topa, Bortus and Klyden’s child. Topa was born female but, after a legal challenge covered in the episode “About a Girl,” underwent gender reassignment surgery like all Moclan children born female. Though Topa does not know this about himself, the issue remains a point of contention between his parents.
The issue resurfaced when Topa began behaving aggressively towards the girls in his class at school. Topa’s teacher was forced to contact Bortus and Klyden. The teacher was played by former Star Trek: The Next Generation star Marina Sirtis.
Sirtis played Counselor Deanna Troi aboard the Enterprise in The Next Generation. Troi’s backstory and several episodes of the series involved a romantic relationship and continued tension with Cmdr. William Riker, played by Jonathan Frakes. The arc concluded with Troi marrying Riker in Star Trek: Nemesis, the movie that ended The Next Generation era of Star Trek. Frakes does not appear in “Sanctuary,” but he did direct the episode, reuniting with Sirtis behind-the-scenes.
There was a third actor with Star Trek: The Next Generation on their list of credits in “Sanctuary.” While not a series regular, Tony Todd had a recurring role as Lt. Worf’s brother, Kurn, in Star Trek: The Next Generation. In “Sanctuary” he played Dojin, a delegate representing Moclan in the Planetary Union.
Frakes will soon reunite with another Star Trek: The Next Generation star. He’s set to direct the third and fourth episodes of the new Star Trek series that will see Patrick Stewart reprise his The Next Generation role as Jean-Luc Picard.
“Eighteen years later. I think the fans are going to be thrilled and excited and surprised,” Frakes said of the Picard series in a recent interview. “I have had the privilege of reading the first couple of episodes and I have spent some time with Patrick who is so engaged [laughs] Sorry. It’s wonderful. It’s smart. I’m excited about it. He is obviously more excited. His announcing of it at Las Vegas — which I believe was his idea —was very smart. You know he is 78, and he is going to be carrying the show on his shoulders, his considerable shoulders.”
What did you think of this Star Trek: The Next Generation reunion? Let us know in the comments. The Orville airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET on FOX.
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