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Ezekiel Moore
Ezekiel Moore

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 2

The second season of the American science fiction television series Star Trek: The Next Generation commenced airing in broadcast syndication in the United States on November 21, 1988, and concluded on July 17, 1989, after airing 22 episodes. Set in the 24th century, the series follows the adventures of the crew of the Starfleet starship Enterprise-D. Season two featured changes to the main cast, following the departure of Gates McFadden. Diana Muldaur was cast as Dr. Katherine Pulaski for a single season before the return of McFadden in season three. Academy Award winner Whoopi Goldberg also joined the cast after pursuing a role from the producers.

Star Trek: The Next Generation - Season 2


The second season saw Maurice Hurley being promoted to head writer after the departure of Robert Lewin.[1][2] Hurley had been brought on board during the first season. His prior experience had been with shows such as The Equalizer and Miami Vice, and he later explained that he took the position because it challenged him.[1] The 1988 Writers Guild of America strike had caused problems at the end of the first season, and these continued as the development of season two started,[1] resulting in a shortened season.[3] Executive producer Rick Berman blamed a decrease in quality at the start of season two on the lack of time available for proper development due to the writer's strike.[3] Hurley felt that the writing on the show managed to get into a rhythm during the second half of the first season, and that the strike stopped that and resulted in his eventually leaving the series. He also criticised the lack of character arcs in the series, saying that "I did some good, some bad, some mediocre, but it's not a show that I could continue to do. It's not where I come from."[1]

Another actress to join the show was Academy Award winner Whoopi Goldberg,[2] who had been a long-time Star Trek fan. She credited Nichelle Nichols as Uhura in The Original Series as an inspiration, saying "Well, when I was nine years old Star Trek came on, I looked at it and I went screaming through the house, 'Come here, mum, everybody, come quick, come quick, there's a black lady on television and she ain't no maid!' I knew right then and there I could be anything I wanted to be."[24] To appear on the show, Goldberg contacted the producers initially through LeVar Burton. The producers did not believe her as they felt that a movie star such as Goldberg would not want to appear in Star Trek,[25] and ignored calls from her agent, until Goldberg called them personally.[2] A meeting was arranged between her and Rick Berman,[26] and she agreed to appear in six episodes of season two.[20] Her character, Guinan, was named after Mary "Texas" Guinan, a prohibition-era speakeasy owner.[2]

Guest stars in season two included Teri Hatcher, who appeared in the episode "The Outrageous Okona" before she gained the role of Lois Lane in the Superman television series Lois and Clark. She was not credited for the role as transporter chief B.G. Robinson after the majority of her scenes were cut from the final episode, resulting in her requesting that the credit be removed.[27] That episode also featured a guest appearance by Billy Campbell, who had been the second choice in the original casting for Commander William Riker. He gained the role in the episode after contacting casting agent Junie Lowry and asking to be in an episode.[28] Musician Mick Fleetwood made a cameo as an Antedean ambassador in the episode "Manhunt", although he did not have any lines.[29] Robert O'Reilly, who appeared in "Manhunt", later gained the part of the Klingon Gowron in season three. His character became Klingon Chancellor, and he appeared in several more TNG episodes as well as having a recurring role in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. O'Reilly's final appearance in Star Trek was as yet another character, in the Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Bounty".[30]

By the end of season one, The Next Generation had become the highest-rated first-run hour-long syndicated series, and the third highest-rated syndicated show overall, behind only Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy.[15] The first episode of season two, "The Child", aired on November 21, 1988, to Nielsen ratings of 10.9 million. After an initial slight decrease in viewers over the next five episodes, the season broke the 11 million mark with "Unnatural Selection" and then peaked as the next two episodes, "A Matter of Honor" and "The Measure of a Man", were both watched by 11.3 million viewers.[33] After this, the ratings decreased gradually until "Manhunt", watched by 8.9 million and receiving the lowest ratings for a first-run broadcast of a Next Generation episode.[33][34][35][36] "Shades of Grey" closed the season on July 17, 1989, watched by 9.8 million viewers. Despite the higher ratings seen in the earlier part of the season, it was only from "Q Who" onwards that The Next Generation rose to become the third most-viewed series in its timeslot.[33]

The central question Star Trek: Picard season 2 essentially existed to answer was why Jean-Luc Picard remained single all of his life. Captain Picard did have a few romantic liaisons in TNG and the feature films, but unlike his Number One, Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes), Jean-Luc never settled down and started a family. The answer turned out to be a trauma buried deep in Picard's subconscious: When Jean-Luc was a young boy, his mother, Yvette Picard (Madeline Wise), succumbed to her mental illness and committed suicide. Jean-Luc blamed himself and this became the source of his lifelong decision to remain single.

The Q Continuum are immortal beings but Star Trek: Picard season 2 proved that a Q can, indeed die. Although Q chose to refer to his mortality as "moving on" to a new plane of existence, the Q as he has been since he debuted in Star Trek: The Next Generation's premiere is apparently no more. Q was dying throughout Picard season 2, and this resulted in him losing his powers while he was in 2024. But before he died, Q had enough energy at the end of Star Trek: Picard season 2 to return Jean-Luc and his friends to their 25th-century starting point in the restored Prime Timeline and resurrect Elnor (Evan Evagora) as well.

The cast of TNG season 1 mostly returned to their roles, with a few exceptions. Gates McFadden as Beverly Crusher left the show and was replaced by Diana Muldaur, who played replacement Chief Medical Officer Katherine Pulaski as a regular guest star, while Beverly was at Starfleet Medical. After Denise Crosby left the show during season 1, with the death of Natasha Yar, Worf was moved to the post of security chief and tactical officer, wearing an operations division gold uniform. Geordi La Forge was moved from flight controller to chief engineer, replacing the rotating guest engineers of season 1. Wesley Crusher opted to stay with his position as acting ensign and became the flight controller.

After the successful beginning of tie-in publications by Pocket Books and DC Comics, both novels and comic books were produced in conjunction with the production of this season. After the comic miniseries taking place during season 1, DC had an ongoing TNG comic begin during season 2, with the first four issues taking place during season 2. Pocket Books TNG novels numbered from #5 to #9 took place during TNG season 2, as did Giant Novel #1, Metamorphosis. An early TNG video game, The Transinium Challenge, took place just before the season started, as it was produced with only certain finalized details of the season's costume and cast changes available during the release. The Transinium Challenger and TNG novel: The Captain's Honor are notable as having taken place between the season 1 finale and the season 2 premiere. After the actual production of TNG season 2, only a few licensed works visited the time period, including "Lifesigns" and "The Legacy of Elenor Dain". Katherine Pulaski also appears only rarely, in Vendetta, a cameo in a single issue of The Star Lost and the early Marvel Comics DS9 series. Pulaski later appeared in leading roles in The Missing and Enigma Tales.

And I have a feeling the Picard season 2 finale is going to end with a surprise TNG character to hook us for next season just like I think Kirk will be in the season 1 finale of SNW. We been craving to see Worf commanding the Enterprise, m-a-y-b-e we may get that moment in the season finale! Oh man, that would be amazing if we did and proof they been reading all my emails after all! ;)

After expressing disappointment at not being part of Picard's third season, Wil Wheaton reprises his role as Wesley Crusher in the Star Trek: Picard Season Two finale. Star Trek: The Next Generation fans likely remember that Wesley's story ended with him leaving Starfleet to join the Traveler, becoming a powerful being capable of wandering the stars and traveling through time. Thus, it isn't much of a problem for him to appear in the 21st century. As Wesley explains, the Travelers work to protect the timeline, working with supervisors like Talinn and Gary Seven. Wesley offers to take Kore with him, presumably to become a supervisor herself, or perhaps another Traveler. Kore accepts.

Because of the 1988 Writer's Guild of America Strike. Technically it occurred at the very end of the previous season, but the next season was impacted more heavily because the producers weren't able to consult with the writing team on the upcoming scripts.

Gates McFadden, who played the original Doctor Beverly Crusher, had left the show after the first season. The producers brought in Diana Muldaur to play a different type of doctor named Katherine Pulaski. Dr. Pulaski had previously served as chief medical officer on board the starship USS Repulse and held the rank of commander. Despite her rank and service record, she was not a bridge officer like her predecessor, Dr. Crusher. 041b061a72


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