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Picard season 2 review: Ghosts of the past spark time-travelling mayhem in triumphant return

Q and Picard share a gripping face-off in season 2 (Picture: Paramount Plus)

It’s time to look to the stars, as Sir Patrick Stewart returns to helm season 2 of the Star Trek spin-off Picard, facing a new universe-breaking threat along the way.

Two years since Trekkies first witnessed Jean-Luc Picard arrive back on screen, the second season opens with a fairly – and unnervingly – calm feel.

Picard is living peacefully on his vineyard, plagued by his inability to form intimate relationships, Chris (Santiago Cabrera) and Agnes (Alison Pill) are working alongside each other on the USS Stargazer and Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) is operating as a lone agent on La Sirena, taking down a crew trying to steal medical supplies.

Meanwhile, Soji (Isa Briones) is now happily working as an apparent ambassador, charming at a dinner party following the Federation lifting the ban on synths.

However, disaster strikes when a mysterious anomaly appears in space, requiring Picard to come out of peaceful retirement to help deal with the menacing threat, which sets the crew off on a dangerous journey steered by none other than iconic Star Trek villain Q (John de Lancie).

The crew must work together to figure out the conundrum they’re in (Picture: Amazon Prime Video)

Whereas the first season of Picard felt incoherent at times, the second outing takes off with an exciting bang that’s riveting from the get-go, putting aside some of the more confusing previous plot points of the past.

In the first few episodes, there’s no mention of the fact that Picard now has a synthetic body, allowing for the new narrative to breathe and flow without the need for superfluous callbacks that viewers less well-versed with Star Trek lore might have forgotten over the past couple of years.

While it is exciting to watch the crew back in action, going up against a Borg that’s trying to lure Picard into its fold at a potentially great cost to the Federation, one of the main strengths of season two is its great burst of nostalgia.

Not only does Q – an extra-dimensional entity with power over time, space and reality – sizzle on screen when faced with Jean-Luc, but Whoopi Goldberg’s Guinan also makes a return over 30 years since first appearing in Star Trek: The Next Generation, offering her old friend a much-needed voice of reason.

Whoopi received a personal invitation from Patrick to return as Guinan (Picture: Paramount Plus)

At 81 years old, Patrick is as commanding as ever as Jean-Luc, perfectly portraying the character’s frailty as well as his inner and outer strength.

Season two delves deeper into the former Starfleet admiral’s backstory, revealing his motivation for exploring the stars in the first place, as he is shown as a child with his mother using his aspiration for adventure to escape the turmoil he’s experiencing at home.

The very first episode features life-threatening stakes, as the Borg Queen’s desire for power from the Federation results in Picard and the crew seemingly facing their dooms.

However, they all awake in an unfamiliar reality, a dystopian present where everything that they know about their universe is warped.

Alison appears to be entranced by the Borg Queen (Picture: Paramount Plus)

In order to fix what’s gone wrong, having been placed in this haunting new world by Q, Picard realises that they must go back in time to set themselves back on the correct path.

In doing so, the futuristic Star Trek spin-off is transported back to the 21st century, where the crew – including Raffi (Michelle Hurd) and Elnor (Evan Evagora) – must try with all their might (and great difficulty) to blend into society without causing any hiccups along the way. Good luck with that.

Verdict on Star Trek: Picard season 2

Picard season two pulls on the heartstrings straight away, as the crew face new threats that could prove to have fatal consequences for some.

With high stakes from the outset, several domineering foes and just the right level of nostalgia, the show continues to build on the expansive and beloved world of Star Trek in spectacular fashion.

Boasting such a strong start, one can only hope that the rest of the season is just as gripping and emotionally captivating, as Jean-Luc’s past comes back to haunt and motivate him.

With a third season already being greenlit, having been produced back-to-back with the second, in Picard we have high hopes.

Star Trek: Picard season two premieres on Prime Video on Friday March 4.

 


Credit: Source

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