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Anson Mount learned a smart acting trick from Star Trek’s best captain

Anson Mount's admitted he learned something watching old episodes starring the best Star Trek captain which he brought to Strange New Worlds and Captain Pike.

Anson Mount in Strange New Worlds

If you’ve never acted, then you’ll never know how hard it can be. I mean, think about it; just being yourself can be exhausting. Imagine how difficult it is to be two people at once. Still, Anson Mount, who plays Pike on Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, learned a great trick from the greatest Star Trek captain.

According to Mount, he learned a clever technique while watching old episodes of the best sci-fi series of all time starring the greatest Star Trek captain (Editor: Opinions may differ on that), James Tiberius Kirk, aka the one and only William Shatner.

“I saw this thing from Shatner that he used to do, which is really smart actually. When he would sit in the command chair, and he would have his elbow up on the armrest like this, right?” Mount told CinemaBlend. “Which is very smart because what he’s doing is getting his hand into the frame. While you’re remaining focused, and a decision has not yet been made, your hand can kind of subtly reveal what’s going on inside.”

Kirk was far from the only captain with his own gesture. In the best Star Trek series, Next Generation, obviously, Picard (Patrick Stewart) had the “Picard Maneuver,” which involved him pulling his tunic down when he positioned himself in his chair.

Commander Riker (Jonathan Frakes), however, has the most famous affectation. Whenever Riker sits down, he tends to approach his chair from the back, stepping over the seat and briefly straddling the chair before sitting down properly.

Fans nicknamed it the Riker Maneuver (not very creative, we know), and now we’ve pointed it out, you’ll never not notice it again. Check out this handy Riker Maneuver compilation below if you’ve never seen it.

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Frakes actually had a pretty good reason for sitting like this beyond it being a cool “cocky, cowboy move” (Frakes’s words, not ours) to do. Apparently, he had a bad back which meant he had to adapt the way he sat down. Now Frakes has never actually confirmed this, but Wil Wheaton, aka Wesley Crusher, told Reddit it’s true, so we’ll take his word for it.

If you’re a Star Trek fan and feeling lost now Picard’s over; we’ve got good news for you. There’s a lot of trekkin’ on the way. Here’s everything we know about all the upcoming series, including the Strange New Worlds season 2 release date, the Lower Decks season 4 release date, the Section 31 release date, the Star Trek 4 release date, the Starfleet Academy release date, and a guide speculating about the Star Trek Legacy release date.

If you still want more, take a look at our explainer on the USS Titan or our guide to the best Star Trek starships. We’ve also got a list of the best TV series ever made for you to enjoy as well.