The second season finale of Star Trek: Picard brought back a beloved Star Trek: The Next Generation star, Wil Wheaton, as Wesley Crusher. A new behind-the-scenes look at the cameo reveals that the various current Star Trek shows competed to have Welsey appear in their episodes. In the video, released via the official Star Trek website and social media channels, Wheaton says he was happy to come back in a scene that canonizes the version of Wesley Crusher post-Next Generation that has long existed in his personal head-canon. Producers Akiva Goldsman and Alex Kurtzman reveal that when the idea to bring Welsey back in Picard came up, the other Star Trek shows argued, with at least one apparently already hatching plans for Welsey's return.
Ultimately, the decision was made to bring Welsey back in Star Trek: Picard. That's largely based on Wesley originating in Star Trek: The Next Generation.
It's interesting to think of how else Wesley may have returned. Since, as a Traveler, Wesley can freely travel through time, he could have appeared in Star Trek: Discovery's future or the past era of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds. It's easy to imagine Star Trek: Lower Decks having a lot of fun with Wesley in a comedic setting, and Wheaton has voice-acting roles under his belt. Similarly, given Wesley grew up on Starfleet starships, he'd be the perfect guest mentor to the young crew of Star Trek: Prodigy. But in the end, it seemed more important that Wesley return to where he started, so to speak.
Wheaton previously commented on not being a part of the Star Trek: The Next Generation returning cast announcement. On his personal blog, Wheaton wrote, "I have been reading the Internet, as you do, and I see a lot of my fellow nerds are as excited to see the TNG cast back together as I am. I've also seen a LOT of people — like, way more than I ever would have imagined –expressing dismay that Wesley isn't part of it. I share some of your sadness, for my own reasons, but I choose to focus instead on how special it's going to be to see my family back together again, and how wonderful it's going to be to talk with them about it in the Ready Room."
What do you think? Let us know in the comments. Star Trek: Picard is streaming now on Paramount+.