Star Trek Guide

Star Trek: Picard Could Have A Hidden TNG Character Cameo

Is yet another familiar face lurking in the trailer for Star Trek: Picard? Due to premiere early next year on CBS All Access, Star Trek: Picard brings Patrick Stewart back to the science fiction franchise for his own solo series, in which the former Enterprise-D captain will set out for the stars once again, this time on a mission to help a mysterious, but powerful, young stranger.

A number of recognizable characters from previous Star Trek series have been confirmed to appear in Picard's new adventure. Brent Spiner's Data seems to have a role as some kind of holographic program, and Picard is seen dropping in on William Riker and Deanna Troi in the latest Star Trek: Picard trailer. Aside from the primary crew of The Next Generation, Picard will also come across Hugh, the Borg that he and his pals befriended during their original adventures, and from Star Trek: Voyager, Jeri Ryan will also be reprising her role as Seven of Nine in what looks set to be a fairly Borg-centric season.

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With such an array of major names coming back to the Star Trek fold after so many years, it's possible that a few lesser-known additions slipped through the net. At around 1:13 in the second Star Trek: Picard trailer released earlier this month, the aging captain is sitting by a fire sharing a glass of whisky with another old-timer. The person Picard is sitting with bears a striking resemblance to the Traveler from The Next Generation. The figure by the fire appears to have the same gray hair and alien-shaped forehead as the Traveler and ominously warns Picard, "you really want to go back out into the cold?"

The Traveler appeared in a handful of The Next Generation episodes as a enigmatic being that came to observe humanity from another time or reality. This life form possessed the power to move freely through space and could transform his appearance into that of a human to better blend into his surroundings. Predictably, the Traveler was fairly neutral from a moral standpoint but would later be considered a friend of the Enterprise, aiding Starfleet's technological advancement in warp travel. Unlike most of the Star Trek fandom, the Traveler took a liking to a certain Wesley Crusher, and saw great potential in the boy, eventually becoming the his mentor.

It certainly makes sense that Picard might seek the Traveler's advice before embarking on his new quest and, equally, it's hard to imagine who else the figure could be. A random friend from Picard's bridge club, perhaps, but this would hardly pack the required narrative weight to carry such an intimate scene. Assuming this is the Traveler in the Star Trek: Picard trailer, it's not immediately clear whether original actor, Eric Menyuk, is reprising the role or whether the Traveler has been recast. Since Menyuk is now practicing law, the latter is more likely.

As with the other characters, the possibility of the Traveler returning in Star Trek: Picard begs the question of what role he might play in the series. A short cameo to convince Picard that abandoning his grapes and returning to a life of adventure is the right decision could be the most likely option, but given the Traveler's powers, anything is possible. Additionally, could the addition of the Traveler in Star Trek: Picard open the door for an appearance by Wesley Crusher himself, Wil Wheaton.

Star Trek: Picard premieres January 23rd on CBS All Access.