Star Trek Picard season 3 episode 9 recap. This recap contains spoilers for the new episode of Star Trek Picard.
The last episode of Star Trek Picard ended with the same cliffhanger as the week previous. So, in this new (and penultimate) episode of the Star Trek series it’s good to see that finally the mystery of the Red Door is being addressed, with Jack Crusher getting assistance from Deanna Troi now that she’s aboard the USS Titan.
She questions him about the symbols, the red vines in particular, inviting him to dig into his past. They’re connections and, as he’s said to Seven on Nine, he craves connection. With his permission, Deanna opens the Red Door in his visions. She’s utterly terrified by what she sees.
And here’s the reveal (final spoiler warning!): it’s the Borg behind the Red Door. All the connections and hints from the series come together, and coalesce. Troi apologises, and flees from the room where she’s working with Jack, straight to Picard and Beverly.
Immediately, the two parents begin an attempt to dissect what’s going on, with Beverly theorising some invisible Borg technology inside her son has passed down from his father from his time spent as Locutus of Borg. Picard’s Irumodic Syndrome was an incorrect diagnosis, and what he passed to Jack was his links to the Borg. Deanna informs Picard and Beverly that Jack, with his powers to enter the minds of others, is the weapon Vadic was searching for and that he should be treated with caution.
Star Trek Picard recap – the Borg return (again)
Picard shares the news with Jack: he passed a seed of the Borg into his adult son who is – unsurprisingly – unhappy. Picard’s own seething anger at his personal history as Locutus of Borg also bubbles up to match Jack’s.
Attempting to flee the ship before he can be sent to a research institute, Jack uses his powers to control a security team on the Titan. He takes a shuttle and, listening to the voice in his head, zips over to the necessary coordinates to find the Borg. The new Data explains the shuttle can’t be tracked. Meanwhile, Jack discovers that having warped into the depths of space, he’s found the remnants of the Borg hidden in some nebula.
At the same time, the TNG cast reveal that the Borg genetic code passed down from Picard to Jack was dormant inside the son, until it wasn’t. That genetic code was also extracted by the Changelings from Picard’s preserved body at the Daystrom Institute. This represents a major threat, especially with the entire fleet of Starfleet starships present in the same location for Frontier Day, and so the USS Titan needs to get there.
Star Trek Picard recap – Frontier Day begins
And finally, Frontier Day begins. Admiral Shelby – yes, of Best of Both Worlds fame – is in command of the newest version of the Enterprise and is leading celebrations. These commence with a demonstration of a new advancement: fleet synchronisation. This allows the ships to act in unison, acting as one in a mass formation. As Riker and Picard point out, very Borg-like.
Simultaneously, halfway across the galaxy, the Borg Queen speaks with Jack and gives him his new Borg name: Vox. The Borg Queen herself is like Emperor Palpatine in The Rise of Skywalker, damaged and kept alive through her connection to technology. She assimilates Jack, who wants to fight but can’t resist.
Back on the Titan, Geordi, Beverly, and Data establish what’s been going on this whole time. The Changelings who have infiltrated Starfleet have been adding Picard’s Borg genetic code into Starfleet’s transporter system and incorporating it into every Starfleet officer who uses a transporter when they beam up or down from anywhere. Essentially, it’s a soft form of assimilation, which is how Jack has been able to communicate with and control those around him.
On the bridge, Picard tries to high-jack Shelby’s fleetwide transmission to communicate this new threat, but the Titan gets blocked out by some Borg energy spike. This particularly impacts those whose frontal cortices are still in development (anyone aged under 25) which as it turns out, is a (very) large part of the Titan’s crew – including Geordi’s daughters – who are now essentially assimilated.
This is happening across the fleet, and we see Shelby’s crew turn on her and kill her. An unceremonious end for the ambitious Shelby. The assimilated crew of the Titan do the same and turn on the senior officers and TNG cast, with Seven of Nine and Captain Shaw having to fight their own crew.
Finally, after all the bumps and bruises and pain, he’s gone through, Shaw gets killed in action, and Seven and Raffi stay with him while the remaining crew get off the Titan sharpish through a repair shuttle. Simultaneously, the armada at Frontier Day begins to implode and takes out Earth’s own defences.
Star Trek Picard recap – a familiar face returns
Geordi takes the shuttle back to the Starfleet museum where it turns out the former chief engineer has been rebuilding and repairing the Enterprise-D. Yes, that beautifully ugly Galaxy-class ship, NCC-1701-D. The saucer was retrieved and repaired, and it’s sat there simply begging to see its former crew come aboard.
And come aboard they do. Stunningly recreated, the Enterprise-D is back in action, and even though it’s nostalgia and nostalgia only, it’s impossible to deny. The Enterprise-D is where this crew belongs, just as much a Star Trek character as they are: carpets and bright lights and all. There really aren’t words to describe how impressive the recreation is, even equipped with the late Majel Barrett’s voice.
They take the Enterprise-D back to Earth to confront the new Borg threat once and for all.
Next week is the final episode, and Vox does a perfectly serviceable job in building up to that. Burdened with having to answer season-long questions, it puts all the pieces of the puzzle together and also injects action and drama into the very final stretch.
Is it disappointing to see the Borg as the villains yet again? Especially after the end of Picard season 2 (for all intents and purposes retconned now), for some, it will be. Should Seven of Nine have been given much more to do? Obviously. Does it rely on convenience? In moments. But it also brushes all of that aside with the superlatively majestic return of the Enterprise-D. Now: we wait.
That’s it on our Star Trek Picard season 3 episode 9 recap. For more on Star Trek, check out our guide to the Star Trek Picard season 3 cast and more. Or find out more about Ro Laren, Tuvok, and the USS Defiant. You can also learn more about the Star Trek Strange New Worlds season 2 release date.
Star Trek Picard season 3 episode 9 recap
Even though the answers don’t merit the season-long build-up, it’s very satisfying to finally get them. And, the Enterprise-D returns. That is all we ever needed.