Star Trek Guide

Star Trek's Jonathan Frakes Is Still Waiting On His Orville Cameo

Jonathan Frakes has his sights set on another intergalactic program, expressing a desire to appear on The Orville. Seth MacFarlane's genre-bending science fiction show could be considered a spiritual descendant of Star Trek, using it as source material and often parodying story elements from the legendary series. As one of the core actors from Star Trek: The Next Generation, it seems only fitting that Frakes would want to take his talents to such a similar show.

The Orville has already had several Star Trek veterans guest star in episodes, back when the show was on Fox (it's moving to Hulu for its third season). Marina Sirtis, who played Counselor Deanna Troi on TNG, appeared as a schoolteacher in season 2's "Sanctuary." John Billingsley of Star Trek: Enterprise fame appeared as a student's father in season 2's "Home." Robert Picardo, who played The Doctor in Star Trek: Voyager, has also made a could of appearances in The Orville.

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Now, Frakes is itching to join their ranks. In comments made to, Frakes said, "I keep waiting for a phone call. I am available. I've got a beard." Frakes is no stranger to playing characters or appearing in shows that make light of the Star Trek franchise. Back in 2002, he voiced a character based off himself in an episode of Futurama. He also appeared in several episodes of another MacFarlane program, Family Guy, voicing both himself and the character he made famous, Commander William T. Riker.

Frakes may be waiting on a call to appear in The Orville - maybe as an alien - but he already has a major in with the program considering he has directed a couple of episodes. During season 1, he directed the fifth episode, "Pria," which marked a season-low in viewership but received favorable reviews. He came back in season 2 to direct "Sanctuary," which ironically also marked a season-low in viewership while receiving solid reviews. It's not clear if the accomplished director is planning on directing any episodes during season 3 of the show.

For Frakes, transitioning into acting in the untethered world of streaming services would be easy at this point. He has already reprised his William T. Riker character on CBS All Access' Star Trek: Picard, his most recent acting credit. With The Orville season 3 coming this year, there's a chance to do something even more creative with the show, an opportunity Frakes made mention of during his interview with Considering his connection to The Orville, it should only be a matter of time before Jonathan Frakes makes an appearance on the program.