Star Trek: 10 Crazy Jean-Luc Picard Fan Theories That Were Actually Confirmed
Captain Jean-Luc Picard is regarded as one of the finest captains in Starfleet, and one of the most beloved characters in the Star Trek franchise. He inherited command of the Enterprise from the audacious Captain Kirk in 1987 when Star Trek: The Next Generation first aired, taking over as the newest incarnation of Star Trek to be seen on television since it was cancelled in the late '60s. With his well-spoken diction, officious demeanor, and preference for diplomacy over senseless violence, he proved a very different captain than his predecessor.
Picard stood as a strident reminder that the franchise was, at its heart, about tolerance and acceptance. He always strove to better his crew by building up their self confidence, and was always in their corner when they faced a particularly hard challenge. As the series progressed into the '90s and feature films were made, fan theories amassed about Star Trek's newest captain, and continue about his upcoming solo-series, Picard. Here are 10 crazy fan theories that actually came true.
11 HE WASN'T ALWAYS SO STRAIGHT-LACED
While Captain Picard may appear as an impeccable Starfleet officer, fans long surmised that there were a few skeletons in his closet. Surely someone of his distinction wasn't always so uptight, considering that he'd been in Starfleet a long time and participated in a variety of daring missions.
The episode "Tapestry" explored what Picard's life was like as a cadet at Starfleet Academy, where he often got into brawls. Considered something of an irascible hothead, he actually ended up getting stabbed for his troubles. Nevertheless, the time he spent as a reckless youth tempered him for the rigors of command.
9 HE WOULD EVENTUALLY FIND LOVE
Captain Picard didn't inherit the knack for romantic connection from Captain Kirk when he inherited command of the Enterprise-D. Picard was an intensely private man, and didn't often share much of himself to his crew, much less a romantic partner. Still, fans hoped that one day he'd meet someone with whom he'd share an emotional bond.
While the series played him opposite a variety of women, it wasn't until "Captain's Holiday" where Picard took a leave of absence to the pleasure planet Risa that someone really caught his attention. His dalliance there with Vash, a captivating treasure hunter, would continuously prove to be one of the highlights of his romantic life over the series.
8 HE WOULD BE ONE OF THE BEST CAPTAINS IN STARFLEET
At the time that Patrick Stewart was cast in Star Trek: The Next Generation in the mid '80s, he wasn't confident that any Star Trek fans would believe a balding middle-aged man could succeed Captain Kirk. He wasn't wrong, and there were detractors that shared his sentiment, but there were many more that had their reasons for believing he'd become one of the greatest captains in the franchise.
For one, every episode he revealed more of his command style. His preference to place his duty to his crew over his obligation to Starfleet command, to pursue personal agency and civil rights over blind conformity, and his preference for diplomacy over violence cemented him as a firm, but fair captain whom every member of his crew was proud to serve.
7 PICARD WAS MADE A BORG TO DEAL WITH A CONTRACT DISPUTE
Despite Star Trek: The Next Generation receiving rave reviews going into its fourth season, contract disputes between Patrick Stewart and John Pike, the head at that time of Paramount Television, made for tension on the set. Pike explained at one point to Stewart that he was going to be written out of the series.
This was done by Captain Picard getting assimilated by The Borg Collective in the cliffhanger finale of Season 3, with the intent to have Commander Riker assume command of the Enterprise-D. Luckily, contractual uncertainties were resolved, and Captain Picard was rescued from the Borg in the Season 4 premier.
6 PICARD ACTED ENGLISH BECAUSE FRENCH WAS DEEMED OBSOLETE
Fans often speculated why, with a first name like "Jean-Luc" did Captain Picard act so officiously British. The fact that Patrick Stewart is British notwithstanding, they felt it was curious he didn't have a French accent, or use more of the French language to convey his heritage.
Star Trek: The Next Generation finally included some French -themed episodes like "Family", where Picard visits his home town of La Barre to stay with his brother at the vineyard Chateau Picard. Data also mentions at one point that French is "obscure" on Earth in the 24th century, implying that French citizens may not sound typically French any longer.
5 PICARD TOLERATED Q BECAUSE HE HELPED HUMANITY
It's no secret that Picard absolutely loathed the omnipotent, omnipresent immortal entity that seemed to delight in using the universe for his playground. For all their quarreling, Q felt an affectionate kinship to Picard, and fans often theorized the only reason Picard tolerated his presence on the Enterprise in any capacity was because he helped humanity.
It was the mischievous Q that first taught the crew of Enterprise a "lesson", and in-so-doing transported them to an area of space where they encountered the Borg. He made them aware of the threat first so that they could warn the Federation and prepare for their arrival, a point Picard never forgot.
4 PICARD WOULD BECOME A FATHER TO WESLEY
From the very first season of TNG, Star Trek fans were made aware of Picard's intense dislike of children, specifically Wesley Crusher. The teenage Starfleet cadet, given a bridge position aboard the Enterprise-D, seemed more a nuisance than a benefit while they served.
Still, despite Picard's animosity towards Wesley, fans felt the Captain would become like a father to the boy. After all, his father had served aboard Picard's previous ship, and no doubt Picard's anger was simply misplaced and suppressed guilt for feeling responsible for Jack Crusher's death.
3 HE WOULD EVENTUALLY BECOME AN ADMIRAL
Captain Picard, for all his adherence to protocol and firm belief in the principles of the Federation, was still known to bend the rules from time to time. He went up against Starfleet brass on several occasions, especially those that attacked personal agency, when he felt it necessary for the greater good.
Fans often surmised that for these reasons, Picard would only ever be able to do the most good from within the system, which was true. And while he often remarked to Commander Riker that he didn't want to spend the rest of his days making decisions from behind a desk, the trailer for Picard references his rank, revealing the greater good led him to an Admiralty.
2 HE WOULD EVENTUALLY LEAVE STARFLEET
While some fans believed Picard's sense of duty would lead him to eventually become an Admiral, another section of fans believed it would lead him to leave Starfleet. His frequent clashes with his higher ups in Starfleet, and disdain for the bureaucracy they represented often suggested he'd eventually have enough of the constant infringement on his captaincy.
In the trailer for Picard, the series that explores his life twenty years after leading the Enterprise-D, we hear a voice ask, "Why did you leave?". It would take a particularly horrific personal event, or the complete corruption of Starfleet command to make him turn his back on what he's spent his whole life pursuing.
1 HE FOUND AND REASSEMBLED DATA
In Star Trek: Nemesis, Data valiantly gave his life aboard The Scimitar, a ship that had been turned into a weapon of mass destruction by a Picard clone. This affected Picard on a profound level, especially since he had stood up for Data's rights as an individual entity divisible from Starfleet's ownership, giving Data the very power of choice that he had employed to save Picard's life.
While watching the Picard trailer we see several glimpses of android body parts, which look like pieces collected from the Scimitar explosion. At the end of the trailer, we even see Picard talking with Data, so it stands to reason he had a hand in his reconfiguration, as an another android or even as a holographic interface.