4 out of 5 stars
Star Trek: Picard, Season Three
I never finished Star Trek: Picard’s first season and had no interest in its second (even with Q’s return), but the prospect of the entire Enterprise-D crew returning for season three was just too much to pass up. A few quibbles aside — would people really still say “hipster” in the 25th century? — Picard’s final season was a great example of how to do nostalgia well. There were plenty of throwbacks, references, and familiar faces (e.g., Ro Laren, Moriarty, Elizabeth Shelby, Tuvok), but it all felt organic and earnest. And yes, I absolutely choked up when the Enterprise-D made her triumphant return. For my money, Riker was the season’s MVP. He brought a nice dose of humor and was critical to some of season three’s most intense emotional moments. The ebb and flow of his and Picard’s relationship was delightful to watch, and felt like a true decades-long friendship that, while full of love and respect, was not without tension. As for the season’s actual storyline, it was OK, if a little rushed. But the actual details mattered less to me than just getting to see some of my favorite TV characters back in action again.