Star Trek: Picard Producer Explains Why They're Bringing Back Q

During last week's First Contact Day celebration, Paramount+ revealed the first Star Trek: Picard Season 2 teaser trailer, confirmed John de Lancie's return as the alien being called Q. This is exciting news for Star Trek fans as Q's presence perfectly bookended Picard's adventures in Star Trek: The Next Generation, making him a natural choice to bring back for Picard's continued adventures. But it isn't as simple as transplanting Q as fans know him into the new series. Like Picard, Q's grown in the years since fans last saw him, as producer Akiva Goldsman explains in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.

When asked how Q has evolved, Goldsman said, "You asked the exact right question, and the answer is: 'In the same way that we have tried to do with Picard himself.' [Co-showrunner] Terry Matalas and I don't pretend that the interstitial years didn't happen. No, obviously, chronological time is less relevant to Q. The time between shows is probably not even the blink of an eye in Q time — if you even have Q time. But we definitely chose to follow suit when it came to him. So as we tried to evolve the other characters, the same is true of Q. This is a show of a different time with actors of a different age. We're now talking about the issues that come up in the last [stage] of your life. We wanted a Q that could play in that arena with Picard."

As to why Q is back in Picard's second season, Goldsman says, "There are a lot of people who think of Q as a trickster god, right? And he is. But he's also a profoundly significant relationship in Picard's life. There's a lot of discussion in Picard season two about the nature of connectedness. Q's kind of a great lightning rod for that because in some ways he's one of Picard's deepest — not deep in the same way that Riker is or Beverly Crusher was — but in its own uniquely, profoundly deep relationship."

Star Trek: Picard stars Patrick Stewart reprising his iconic role as Jean-Luc Picard, which he played for seven seasons on Star Trek: The Next Generation, following him through the next chapter of his life. Star Trek: Picard Season Two's cast includes Patrick Stewart, Alison Pill, Isa Briones, Evan Evagora, Michelle Hurd, Santiago Cabrera, Jeri Ryan, Orla Brady, and Brent Spiner. The second season debuts on Paramount+ in 2022.