Star Trek: Picard & The Role of The Romulans

Star Trek: Picard further introduced its two Romulan characters at NYCC, as well as teased its larger Romulan plotline.

While much is being kept under wraps concerning the details of Star Trek: Picard, we know that Romulans will be part of the main plot, with the destruction of the Romulan homeworld in 2387 (as first mentioned in the 2009 Star Trek film) playing a factor in the series’ narrative and with two Romulan characters featured in its main cast (not to mention a Romulan Bird-of-Prey in the latest trailer!).

“[The Romulan plotline] has its basis in the 2009 movie,” said Alex Kurtzman during the Star Trek: Picard panel at this weekend’s New York Comic Con. “Obviously, that’s where we established the destruction of the homeworld. As I said in the last panel, Star Trek is a mirror. It holds itself up to society … We’re in the middle of a massive immigration conversation, and we are very proud, I think, to say we are diving head first into that and using Trek as a way of exploring it from all points of view.”

read more: How Picard Compares to The Next Generation

Also on stage at the event were actors Harry Treadaway and Evan Evagora, who will be playing Romulan characters Narek and Elnor, respectively.

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Teased Treadaway: “I play a Romulan agent who is involved in trying to uncover some truths, which he needs to get to the bottom of to save a lot of people, but I can’t say much more.”

It sounds like Narek and Elnor, though both Romulan, will not see eye to eye.

“We’re kind of like an odd couple,” said Evagora. “I mean… I like him in real life, but, in the show, I hate his guts … They’re both very different. We’re both Romulans raised entirely differently. I’d say [Narek] was raised more typically like a Romulan [while Elnor is] very different. He’s more secretive, [often] lying … My character was raised to always tell the truth. I don’t think, to begin with, [Elnor]’s even capable of lying or telling a lie.”

read more: Discovery and Picard’s Potential Connections

Trek alum Jeri Ryan, who plays former Borg character Seven of Nine, will be returning to the world of Trek for Picard. After watching the San Diego Comic Con trailer, some have speculated that the Romulans have captured and are experimenting on former Borg to further their own technology. If this is the case, Seven’s line to Picard “I help people who have no one left to help them,” as delivered in the NYCC trailer, may hint at Seven’s efforts to rescue the former Borg prisoners.

Picard has a complicated relationship with both the Romulans and Borg. In  Star Trek: The Next Generation two-parter “The Best of Both Worlds,” Picard is involuntarily assimilated by the Borg to become Locutus of Borg, and is therefore a former Borg. As for the Romulans, he helped Spock in his efforts to reunite the Vulcan and Romulan races in 2368 and led a massive Romulan rescue mission as an Admiral, but has also faced off against Romulans on a number of occasions, including in Star Trek: Nemesis, which led to the death of longtime friend Data, who seems to be haunting him in some capacity in the second Picard trailer.

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read more: Why Star Trek: Picard Won’t Be Like The Last Jedi

That being said, Picard has always had a strong moral compass and a penchant for helping the most vulnerable. Wherever he falls in the current solar system order, you can bet it is on the side of justice.

Star Trek: Picard premieres on January 23rd on CBS All-Access. Read more about it here.

Kayti Burt is a staff editor covering books, TV, movies, and fan culture at Den of Geek. Read more of her work here or follow her on Twitter @kaytiburt.