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Jack Crusher

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Ensign Jack Crusher is a 25th century Human Federation Starfleet officer assigned to the USS Enterprise -G . He is the son of Admirals Beverly Crusher and Jean-Luc Picard .

  • 1.1 Criminal record
  • 2 Starfleet career
  • 3 Key dates
  • 4.1 Appearances
  • 4.2 Background information
  • 4.3 External link

Early life [ ]

Crusher was conceived on Casperia Prime and attended school in London , England , on Earth . He acquired his English accent while there and according to his mother , never quite shook it. ( PIC : " Seventeen Seconds ")

When he was a boy, Crusher took Jack to the Crimson Arboretum on Raritan IV . ( PIC : " Võx ")

When he came of age, he was given a choice by his mother to meet and get to know his father, but to her knowledge he did not take her up on the offer. ( PIC : " Seventeen Seconds ") Indeed, however, in 2396 , Crusher visited 10 Forward Avenue where Picard was having lunch but didn't reveal himself. While there, he inquired if Picard ever regretted not having a family , and Picard boasted that Starfleet was all the family he ever needed. Unbeknownst to Picard, at the time, his answer was why Crusher chose to not pursue a relationship with his father. ( PIC : " No Win Scenario ")

In 2401 , he was tracked by Vadic , which led to his rescue by Jean-Luc Picard. Afterwards, he was trapped on the USS Titan -A during the evolved changelings' attack and subsequent commandeering of the ship. Jack was confined to quarters when it was learned that the changelings were interested in dormant Borg biological components in his DNA. Jack was able to escape, stealing a shuttle in order to seek out the Borg Queen . Once he arrived at her location, he was captured and assimilated under her supervision. ( PIC : " Vox ")

Criminal record [ ]

He was known as a criminal and con artist in both Federation and non-Federation space , and was associated with the aliases based on his given initials, including Jack Canby , John Carson , James Cole , Jarlis Carvel , Jeff Croosh , and Juddah Crusser . ( PIC : " The Next Generation ", " Disengage ", " Imposters ")

Crusher was a wanted criminal on numerous Federation and non-Federation worlds under a number of his aliases. As Jack Canby, he was wanted on Risa and Betazed . As John Carson, he was wanted on Trill , Cardassia Prime , and Rigel IV . Using the alias James Cole, Crusher was wanted for fraud on Minas V , possession of unregistered liquors on Bajor , and possession of unregistered arms on Archer IV . He also faced charges under the alias Jarlis Carvel. Captain Liam Shaw would later note the name "Jarlis Carvel" was his personal favorite, sarcastically remarking, " That one took a lot of imagination . " ( PIC : " Disengage ")

Canby, wanted on Risa and Betazed

Images of Crusher's various mugshot were utilized during his recovery by the crew of the USS Intrepid . The same images also appeared in Commander Ro Laren 's undercover research implicated as being compromised by suspected Changeling infiltration into Starfleet, as it was included in the data files hidden on her Bajoran earring , she had managed to get to Admiral Picard shortly before her death . ( PIC : " Imposters ")

Crusher was later incorrectly diagnosed with Irumodic Syndrome after he told his mother about the nightmares and delusions he saw during the day. ( PIC : " The Bounty ")


Jack as Vox

Son of Locutus

Võx was the designation given to Crusher by the Borg Queen . Prior to this choice, she had considered such names as " Regenerati " and " Puer Dei ". ( PIC : " Võx ")

However, after Picard linked with his son, he was able to reach Jack inside of Võx and Jack rejected his Borg identity just before the Borg cube was destroyed by the USS Enterprise -D . ( PIC : " The Last Generation ")

Starfleet career [ ]

Crusher was later placed in an accelerated program and within a year was commissioned with the rank of ensign , serving as the special counselor to Captain Seven of Nine on the USS Enterprise -G .

While in his quarters on the ship, Crusher was approached by Q who revealed that while the trial of Humanity was over for Picard, it had only just begun for his son. ( PIC : " The Last Generation ")

Key dates [ ]

  • 2396 : Attempts to visit Jean-Luc Picard but fails to reveal himself
  • Turn into a Borg drone briefly
  • Joins Starfleet
  • 2402 : Assigned to the USS Enterprise -G as special counselor to the captain.

Appendices [ ]

Appearances [ ].

  • " The Next Generation "
  • " Disengage "
  • " Seventeen Seconds "
  • " No Win Scenario "
  • " Imposters "
  • " The Bounty "
  • " Dominion "
  • " Surrender "
  • " The Last Generation "

Background information [ ]

Jack Crusher was portrayed by English actor Ed Speleers .

In " No Win Scenario ", Crusher agrees with Picard's supposition that he was 23-24 years old. Given that he was conceived after the events of Star Trek Nemesis (set in 2379), he can be no more than 22 years of age. Dialog also established that Picard and co. had been out of touch with his mother for "over 20 years," suggesting that he was no younger than 19/20 years of age.

External link [ ]

  • Jack Crusher at Memory Beta , the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
  • 2 USS Enterprise (NCC-1701-G)
  • 3 Star Trek: The Next Generation

‘Star Trek: Picard’: Everything We Know About Jack Crusher

Ed Speleers plays Jack Crusher, the son of Beverly Crusher and Jean-Luc Picard

star trek jack crusher red eyes

While “Star Trek: Picard” Season 3 has been a reunion of sorts for the cast of “Star Trek: The Next Generation,” there is one new character that has a major impact on at least two Enterprise crewmen.

Enter Jack Crusher. The brash young man wasn’t even given a name in the season premiere, where he dramatically revealed he’s the son of Dr. Beverly Crusher.

Episode 2 revealed even more about Crusher and his lineage, which is confirmed in Episode 3. As the season unfolds, we’ll unravel the mystery of this newcomer.

Warning, major spoilers ahead.

Who is Jack Crusher?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Dr. Beverly Crusher and her son Jack make up the two-person crew of the S.S. Eleos, a medical aide vessel.

In Season 3, Episode 1, Beverly is critically injured in an alien attack. She sends a distress call out to her former captain and close friend, Jean-Luc Picard. Although she hasn’t been in contact with Picard or her Enterprise crewmates for over 20 years, they’re the only people she can trust.

Picard enlists the help of his former first officer, Will Riker, to stage a rescue mission. They hatch a plan to bring the U.S.S. Titan, Riker’s former command, to the Eleos. With the help of Seven of Nine, the Titan’s first officer, Picard and Riker steal a shuttle and board the Eleos.

There they discover Beverly in a medical stasis pod and a man who claims to be her son.

In Episode 2, the Eleos soon comes under attack from Vadic, the captain of the heavily armed warship Shrike. Vadic says that there’s a bounty on Jack and the Titan has one hour to turn him over or be destroyed.

Liam Shaw, the captain of the Titan, throws Jack in the brig while they debate what to do. They discover Jack has a checkered past; he’s a conman who has committed multiple crimes under several aliases. Is he really who he claims to be?

Shaw is inclined to turn over Jack; after all, one life isn’t worth the lives of 500, including Beverly’s. Jack escapes confinement and plans to transport himself over to the Shrike. Right before he does, Beverly appears and nods to Picard, confirming to him that Jack is his son.

Who are Jack Crusher’s parents?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Jack Crusher is the son of Beverly Crusher and Jean-Luc Picard.

He is named after Beverly’s first husband, Jack R. Crusher. Her husband served under Picard on the U.S.S. Stargazer and was killed on a mission. Beverly and Jack had a son, Wesley.

While serving aboard the Enterprise, Beverly and Picard had a close relationship that bordered on romance, but they never acted upon it.

At one point they were mentally linked via alien technology, and Beverly learned that Picard had romantic feelings for her while she was married to Jack, his friend and crewman. He never acted on them and tried to deny her application to the Enterprise. After the alien technology is removed, they shared a kiss, but that was it.

star trek jack crusher red eyes

When was Jack Crusher conceived?

In Episode 3, Beverly and Picard finally have a one-on-one conversation about Jack.

It turns out Jack was conceived the old-fashioned way.

Two months before leaving the Enterprise, the on-again-off-again couple took shore leave to Casperia Prime, a vacation world known for its natural beauty.

Apparently, the couple was taken away by the beauty of a waterfall and then taken by each other.

Beverly became pregnant that night but decided not to tell Picard.

She tried several times, but Picard was involved in some dangerous situation or another. Beverly realized that she could protect her son, but not Picard’s son. So she hid his identity from birth on.

What is Jack Crusher’s relationship with his parents and crewmates?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Jack has a close relationship with his mother Beverly, who he says taught him everything he knows.

In Episode 2, when asked by Picard who his father is, Jack shouts, “I never knew my father!”

It takes Jack’s near-death in Episode 3 from verterium poisoning for fatherhood to sink in for Picard.

In Episode 4, with the Titan sinking further into a gravity well, Picard tries to make up for lost time for inviting Crusher to have a drink in Ten Forward. He tells Jack about his namesake and Beverly’s first husband, Jack R. Crusher. Picard and Jack R. were best friends on the U.S.S. Stargazer, and had to pilot a meteoroid shower in a damaged shuttle together.

Picard and Jack essentially recreate this at the end of the episode, with Crusher calling out navigational coordinates while Picard directs thrusters, allowing the Titan to escape the nebula.

At the very end of the episode, it’s revealed that Jack did meet his father once before, in a bar five years prior. After listening to Picard regale Starfleet cadets about his past adventures, Jack asked Picard about family. Picard replied that he considered Starfleet to be all the family he ever needed, crushing Jack.

Jack and Sidney La Forge strike a bond in Episode 6 with both feeling the pressure from their famous fathers. There seems to be a bit of a flirtation growing between the two. But Geordi quickly quashes it, telling Jack to “stay away from my daughter.”

He also bonds with Seven of Nine, with whom he shares a rebellious streak.

He has a love-hate relationship with Vadic, who teases him about his true identity and the red door he sees in his visions. He pleads with Vadic to tell him who he really is, but kills her before she can give him any answers.

How old is Jack Crusher?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Beverly was in her fifties by the events of “Star Trek: Nemesis,” the last time her character was last seen on screen.

“Picard” Season 3 takes place approximately 23 years later, but Jack Crusher appears to be a bit older than that (actor Ed Speleers is 34 years old).

Twitter users had some theories that Jack was actually born when Beverly left the Enterprise in Season 2 (Gates McFadden was written out of the show and later brought back). That would make Jack in his early 30s — which he appears to be — rather than his early 20s.

However, that theory was debunked in Episode 3. Jack Crusher is just a hard-looking (but handsome) 23-year-old. Living with your mom full-time and running rescue missions apparently ages you prematurely.

Episode 4 confirms Jack’s age when Picard asks him if he’s about 23 or 24 years old. This ends up being a major plot point towards the end of the season.

Jack Crusher’s visions — what lies behind the red door?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

While exposed to toxic verterium gas, Jack has visions of a woman (in the form of Seven of Nine) who beckons to him “Find me!”

At the end of Episode 4, Jack has a similar vision in his quarters, with a female voice once again calling out, “Find me!” He also has visions of roots growing on the walls and a glowing red door.

Episode 5 opens with a disturbing vision of Jack on the Titan bridge, massacring all of the bridge crew. Fortunately, it’s just a vision and Jack snaps back to reality inside his quarters. He drops the phaser and his eyes glow red.

At the end of the episode, he has another vision and kills four Changelings disguised as humans with ease.

One leading theory is that Jack is possessed by the Pah Wraiths, non-corporeal beings and enemies of the Bajoran Prophets from “Star Trek: Deep Space Nine.” Since the Changelings were also introduced in “Deep Space Nine,” the two species may have some connection.

In Episode 6, it’s revealed that Jack inherited irumodic syndrome from Picard, a neurological disorder that causes hallucinations.

Warning, major spoilers ahead

In Episode 9, Troi and Jack open the red door in his mind. Behind they find a Borg Cube. The female voice calling out to Jack is the Borg Queen (Alice Krige).

Troi runs and tells Beverly and Picard what she sees. Picard talks to Jack, who deduces it’s the Borg and then flees the Titan in a shuttle. He is drawn to the source of the voices — the Queen.

This is where it gets slightly complicated/technical. 35 years ago, the Borg assimilated Picard and introduced dormant code into his DNA — code that was passed on to Jack.

Whereas all assimilated Borg “receive” commands from the collective/Queen, Jack’s unique DNA makes him a “transmitter.”

What are Jack Crusher’s special abilities and powers?

In Episode 7, Jack taps into several new powers.

While flirting with Sidney in the turbolift, he is able to read her mind telepathically, proving this is no case of irumodic syndrome. Later, when Changelings board the Titan, Jack “possesses” Sidney’s body, allowing her to take down her attacker.

In Episode 8, he “possesses” Mura in an attempt to regain control of the bridge, which Vadic has commandeered.

In Episode 9, we learn that due to his Borg code, he is able to “transmit” to anyone who has Borg code in their system.

How does Jack Crusher fit in with Frontier Day?

The Borg and Changelings have secretly been infiltrating Starfleet, adding Borg code to the transporter system. Anyone who uses the transporter has the code spliced into their system, becoming a “receiver.” This only works on younger crewmembers before their brains stop developing.

The code lies dormant until activated via a transmitter. Jack is that transmitter.

When the Borg Queen captures Jack, she uses him to transmit to all the ships gathered at Frontier Day. Any crewmember under 25, including the La Forge sisters and Mura, is immediately assimilated and activated as Borg drones.

The Queen is able to take command of all of Starfleet without even having a ship nearby.

Jack is assimilated and is hesitant to separate himself from the collective despite his father’s pleas. Eventually, Picard is successful, averting the destruction of Earth by the assimilated fleet.

Where is Jack at the end of the series?

In a proud send-him-off-to-college moment, Beverly and Jean Luc travel with Jack to his first Starfleet posting aboard the U.S.S. Titan, which has been renamed the U.S.S. Enterprise.

His new commanding officer? Captain Seven of Nine, who appoints the ensign as special counselor.

Later, as he’s unpacking his belongings in his quarters, he is visited by Q. We break down the post-credit scene between Jack and Q here .

Who plays Jack Crusher?

star trek jack crusher red eyes

As previously mentioned, British actor Ed Speleers plays Jack Crusher.

Speleers is best known for playing Jimmy the footman on “Downton Abbey,” Stephen Bonnet on “Outlander” and Rhys Montrose on “You.”

His big break came in 2006 when he played the title role in the fantasy feature film “Eragon.”

New episodes of “Star Trek: Picard” air Thursdays on Paramount+ .

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Star Trek: Picard finale post-credits scene explained: Showrunner confirms big things to come

Showrunner Terry Matalas says Ed Speleers is gonna be a busy man after Picard.

Nick is an entertainment journalist based in New York, NY. If you like pugs and the occasional blurry photo of an action figure, follow him on Twitter @NickARomano.

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Warning: Spoilers from Star Trek: Picard 's series finale are discussed in this article.

There might be another Star Trek series coming our way — or at the very least, another home for Ed Speleers ' Jack Crusher.

The series finale of Star Trek: Picard , which dropped on Paramount+ Thursday, came with a post-credits scene that teases big things ahead for the character. Showrunner Terry Matalas confirms in an interview with EW, "Jack's got a lot to do, let me tell you."

He wouldn't tell us exactly what, of course, but the producer — who has guided the Patrick Stewart -led spin-off to break into the Nielsen Top 10 ratings for the first time with season 3 — confirms his story isn't over.

After Jean-Luc Picard (Stewart) and Beverly Crusher ( Gates McFadden ) save their son from the Borg Queen with help from their longtime comrades, the finale episode jumps forward a year to see where these characters ended up. Among the reveals is the U.S.S. Titan, which has been rechristened as the Enterprise-G in recognition of Picard and his crew's efforts.

Seven of Nine ( Jeri Ryan ) has been promoted to captain, with Raffi (Michelle Hurd) as her No. 1. A few members of the Titan join them, including Sidney La Forge (Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut). Jack is now Ensign Jack Crusher, as he was placed on an accelerated track by Starfleet.

The post-credits scene cuts to Jack in his quarters on the Enterprise-G. He settles into his room when Q (John de Lancie) makes a surprise appearance.

"Young mortal, you have much ahead of you," he tells Jack.

"You told my father that humanity's trial was over," the young Crusher replies.

"It is... for him," he clarifies. "But I'm here today because of you. You see, yours, Jack, has just begun."

Matalas had the idea for this moment deep into season 2 when he was mapping out the trajectory of season 3. "Once I had the genesis of this idea and I knew it would be about Picard's son, I had envisioned a post-credit sequence in which you passed the torch to [him]."

He points to "Encounter at Farpoint," the first episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation season 1. "The first major interaction is Q and Picard," he says. "Where better to end than at the beginning?"

A Star Trek: Legacy series has been rumored for some time, with a few of the Picard actors teasing how season 3 leaves the door open to continue that story with the next generation of characters. Alex Kurtzman , who's been shepherding the new golden age of Trek, had even teased during San Diego Comic-Con last year that fans should expect more shows with female leads. So, perhaps, we're getting a Seven of Nine series for Ryan, with Jack as part of her crew.

The only new Trek titles that have been formally announced so far are Star Trek: Starfleet Academy , which Matalas says is part of a different timeline than Picard ; and Star Trek: Section 31 , the event movie starring Michelle Yeoh as Emperor Philippa Georgiou from Star Trek: Discovery .

Matalas won't disclose what the plans are for Speleers as Jack moving forward, only that he knows what they are. "Oh yes. I do [know]," he says. "Oh yes."

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Related content:

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  • Star Trek: Starfleet Academy series will beam up a new generation of cadets
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Den of Geek

Star Trek: Picard Season 3 Episode 9 Will Reveal Something Shocking About Jack’s Red Door

A clip released ahead of the next episode of Star Trek: Picard, which is titled "Vox," teases what's behind Jack Crusher and the Red Door.

star trek jack crusher red eyes

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Ed Speleers as Jack Crusher in Star Trek: Picard Season 3

This Star Trek: Picard article contains spoilers.

With only two episodes to go before the series finale, Star Trek: Picard seems ready to wrap up its big storylines. In “Surrender,” season 3 antagonist Vadic finally met her demise, thanks to a very clever maneuver by Jean-Luc and company, closing one of the many arcs introduced this season. But there’s still plenty the Next Generation team and the crew of the USS Titan need to solve before this story can truly wrap up.

For one thing, our heroes still need to figure out how to stop the elusive Changeling plot that’s set to unfold during Starfleet’s big Frontier Day celebration. Whatever they have planned, it’s clear these shapeshifting terrorists intend to change the Star Trek universe as we know it. But there’s yet one other mystery the group needs to solve before it can truly turn its attention to Frontier Day: what’s going on with Jack Crusher (Ed Speleers) and what do the Changelings want with him?

Over the last eight episodes, we’ve watched Jean-Luc’s surprise son with Dr. Beverly Crusher go through some big changes. From a smart-talking scoundrel on the run from bounty hunters to some sort of mutant who can control other people with his mind, Jack’s life seems all over the place at the moment. His strange abilities and visions of a vine-covered Red Door (and the voices calling out to him from the other side) have made it clear that he isn’t just the offspring of two of our favorite TNG characters but something more. While season 3 has been happy to drag out the big reveal about what Jack really is, it seems like next week’s penultimate episode, which is called “Vox,” will finally give us the answers we’ve been waiting for.

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Paramount+ was nice enough to drop a new clip at the end of this week’s The Ready Room after show that picks up where the final scene of “Surrender” left off. Check it out below at 29:34:

In the clip, Deanna Troi is using her telepathic abilities to delve into Jack’s darkest thoughts in order to finally open the mysterious Red Door that’s been haunting Jean-Luc’s son. But when she finally turns the knob and opens that door, Deanna is terrified by what she sees inside, so much so that she immediately pulls out of Jack’s mind and warps the hell out of the room. What did the veteran counselor of the USS Enterprise see that scared her so much? When Jack asks what she saw, he receives no answer from Deanna as she rushes off, presumably to deal with the aftershocks of the revelation. End scene.

Yes, this is yet another tease for an admittedly way-too-drawn-out mystery, but hopefully it’s the last after “Surrender” promised but didn’t deliver the answers. Surely “Vox” will finally reveal what’s what? There are plenty of fan theories concerning Jack, including the obvious Borg suspicions as well as the much more interesting Pah-wraith allegations, which would provide another way Picard season 3 ties into Deep Space Nine . There’s certainly some very captivating evidence connecting him to the latter, including the red eyes and his ability to possess others…

Star Trek: Picard season 3 streams Thursdays on Paramount+.

John Saavedra

John Saavedra | @johnsjr9

John Saavedra is the Co-Editor-in-Chief of Den of Geek. He lives in New York City with his two cats.

What's the deal with Jack Crusher in 'Star Trek: Picard'?

Jean-Luc Picard and Beverly Crusher's son had always known he was "different". Here's everything you need to know about Jack Crusher.

Jack Crusher in Star Trek: Picard

  • Connection to the Borg
  • Joining the Borg
  • Picard's body
  • Changelings interest in Jack
  • Rescuing Jack
  • What's next?

Warning: Spoilers ahead if you haven't watched "Star Trek: Picard" episode 9, 'Võx' and episode 10, 'The Last Generation' .

As soon as Jack Crusher turned up in "Star Trek: Picard season 3", his place in franchise history was assured – after all, as the son of Jean-Luc Picard and Beverly Crusher, he's effectively Starfleet royalty.

But there's more to Jack than the compassionate but morally flexible doctor we first encounter on board the SS Eleos XII. Over the course of the season we've seen visions and inner voices evolve into full-on superpowers, but the cause of his "gifts" remained a tantalizing mystery… until Deanna Troi took a peek behind the locked red door in his mind. 

In episode 9, 'Võx', we finally learned why there was "something very wrong" with Jack – and why Vadic and the Changelings were so obsessed with tracking him down. It turned out his powers are the direct result of his father's assimilation by the Borg 35 years earlier, and he became the cornerstone of the Collective's latest assault on the Federation. 

"I always thought if people could only see each other, hear each other, speak in one voice, act in one mind together…" the altruistic Jack explained in the episode. "Who knew a little cybernetic authoritarianism was the answer?"

Here's everything you need to know about Jack Crusher and his Borg heritage in "Star Trek: Picard season 3".

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What are Jack Crusher's abilities?

We saw Jack Crusher's (Ed Speleers) superhuman abilities evolve throughout the course of "Star Trek: Picard" season 3. Early on, these traits manifested themselves as voices, visions and unexplained fighting skills. We've since seen him listen to crewmates' thoughts and take control of their minds and bodies, remote-controlling them in hand-to-hand combat against the Changelings.

When Counselor Deanna Troi arrived on the USS Titan, however, she realized that Jack's gifts were not necessarily a good thing. "There's a darkness with that boy," she pointed out. "Not in him but around him, passing through him. And a voice inside him, ancient and weak, but a voice that isn't his own." 

Jack eventually admitted that his recurring visions of spooky red vines represent connection, something he saw as "right, true, purposeful… perfect." And when he allowed Troi to open the imposing red door lurking in his mind's eye, the shock prompted her to run away from their consultation. Understandable, perhaps, seeing as it was a Borg Cube. 

What was Jack's connection with the Borg?

It's something Jack inherited from his dad.

When Jean-Luc Picard was assimilated by the Borg in classic "Star Trek: The Next Generation" two-parter 'The Best of Both Worlds', he briefly became part of the Collective as Locutus. He was subsequently rescued by the Enterprise crew and, after his cybernetic implants were removed, cleared by Starfleet to return to active duty. 

But Starfleet's doctors didn't realize that the Borg had also made some biological adaptations to Picard's DNA. "I survived without scars," he explained, "but not, it seems, unchanged." These modifications would come to manifest themselves in symptoms misdiagnosed as Irumodic Syndrome, the degenerative neurological condition that wound up killing Jean-Luc's human body in the first season of "Picard". These genetic alterations were also the reason Picard could still "hear" the Borg in "Star Trek: First Contact".

In 'Võx', set some 35 years after Picard's close encounter with the Collective, it emerged that he inadvertently passed his Borg DNA onto his long-lost son – and that the traits Jack inherited were no longer dormant. It was also apparent that the Collective no longer required electronic components to operate as a hive mind.

Did Jack willfully join forces with the Collective?

Yes and no. 

It's undeniable that the lure of the Borg Queen's voice (which, for most of Jack's life, has sounded like his mother's) was strong, and that he used his aforementioned powers to escape custody, steal a shuttlecraft and jump into one of the Borg's transwarp conduits for a journey "home". But this course of action initially owed more to Jack's desire to find some answers – and avoid a lifetime of mind melds and lobotomies in a Vulcan institution – than embracing an opportunity to betray his shipmates 

When Jack found the Borg Queen (voiced by Alice Krige, who originated the role in "First Contact") on a derelict Borg space station, she explained that in contrast with his father – who, as Locutus, was the "one who speaks" – he was "the voice itself". She also persisted with her Latin naming convention, telling Jack his Borg self would be known as Võx.

Jack wasn't on board with the plan, however, and tried to shoot her – an act he described as "mercy" – but his in-built programming prevented him from doing so. He was quickly hooked up to some prehensile Borg cables to connect with the Collective – though it's unlikely that was his intent when he left the Titan.

Why was Jean-Luc Picard's human body so important?

When Picard's (misdiagnosed) Irumodic Syndrome became terminal in "Picard" season 1, Data 's human "brother" Dr Altan Soong gifted him an advanced cybernetic "golem" body. After Picard had died, however, Soong realized there was an "anomalous form" inside his body and ordered his remains be preserved at Daystrom Station for further study. 

This "anomalous form" was, of course, the result of the Borg's genetic tinkering – and the central pillar of their plan to assimilate Starfleet. The Borg's plan was to spread Picard's Borg-altered DNA throughout Starfleet using the transporters.

Why did the Changelings want to get their hands on Jack?

The entire season was an unexpected team-up between "The Next Generation" era's most iconic villains.

The late Vadic and her new-and-improved Changeling forces were the perfect allies for the Borg. As well as sharing the Collective's hatred for the Federation, their shapeshifting abilities ensured they could infiltrate all levels of Starfleet. 

Changeling operatives deployed throughout the fleet then incorporated the Borg DNA recovered from Picard's deceased body into starship transporter systems. As crew members beamed on and off their ships, the computers recognized this new genetic code as "common biology" and integrated it into the DNA of every officer in the fleet. 

The Changelings wanted Jack because of they needed his Borg-altered DNA, though they later ended up acquiring this from Picard's body.

What was the Borg's plan?

They wanted to assimilate Starfleet by stealth – and Starfleet unwittingly made it easy for them. Not only were numerous starships gathered in one place to celebrate Federation Day – the 250th anniversary of Starfleet – but they also showcased the new "Fleet Formation Mode", in which their computer systems were integrated as one. 

More importantly, with Jack hooked up to the Collective, the Borg Queen was in prime position to implement her masterplan. When the assimilation signal was activated, it allowed her to activate the dormant Borg DNA lurking inside unsuspecting crewmembers. In an instant, hundreds of officers – including Geordi La Forge's daughters, Sidney and Alandra – were transformed into drones. They subsequently assimilated every ship in Starfleet.

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There was a flaw in the Borg Queen's evil scheme, however. Thanks to a classic (and arguably over convenient) piece of "Star Trek" pseudo-science, Data explained that the "Borg genetic material doesn't propagate in a species past a certain point in the development cycle", meaning it affected younger members of the crew, but not their more senior counterparts. In other words, if ever there was a time for the veteran "TNG" crew to come into their own, this was it. 

Picard and the crew subsequently returned to the Fleet Museum where Geordi La Forge revealed he'd rebuilt their old ship, the USS Enterprise-D, last seen crash-landing on Viridian III in "Star Trek: Generations". Because it's systems were too old to connect to Starfleet's networked computers, they were able to infiltrate the Borg Queen's vessel and destroy the signal beacon assimilating Starfleet's kids.

Rescuing Jack from the Borg

Jack was given Borg implants much like his father's and became the central processing unit of the hive mind. He wasn't overly eager to leave, either, as he found peace in the Collective, a place where there was no loneliness, no fear and no suffering. 

When Picard plugged himself into the hive mind, however, he managed to convince Jack of the importance of family, and remind him that he didn't have to feel alone. Jack then disconnected himself from the Borg voluntarily, and was beamed onto the Enterprise (along with Picard, Riker and Worf) before the Cube exploded.

What's next for Jack Crusher?

Jack was fast-tracked through Starfleet Academy and posted to the USS Titan, now renamed the USS Enterprise-G in honor of Picard and co's efforts saving Earth and the Federation from the Borg and the Dominion. Newly promoted captain Seven of Nine appointed him as special counselor to the captain, giving him a spot on the bridge. 

That's not the end of Jack's story, however. In the end credits of the season finale, Jack received a visit from everyone's favorite omnipotent super-being, Q, who's not quite as dead as season 2 led us to believe. When Jack pointed out the ongoing trial of humanity (which had begun in "TNG" pilot 'Encounter at Farpoint') was supposed to be over, Q confirmed it was for Picard – but that Jack's "has just begun". 

It feels like the set-up for a spin-off featuring Seven, Raffi, Sidney and Jack, but don't get your hopes up just yet – showrunner Terry Matalas has stated "there is nothing in development at Paramount."

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Richard Edwards

Richard's love affair with outer space started when he saw the original "Star Wars" on TV aged four, and he spent much of the ’90s watching "Star Trek”, "Babylon 5” and “The X-Files" with his mum. After studying physics at university, he became a journalist, swapped science fact for science fiction, and hit the jackpot when he joined the team at SFX, the UK's biggest sci-fi and fantasy magazine. He liked it so much he stayed there for 12 years, four of them as editor. 

He's since gone freelance and passes his time writing about "Star Wars", "Star Trek" and superheroes for the likes of SFX, Total Film, TechRadar and GamesRadar+. He has met five Doctors, two Starfleet captains and one Luke Skywalker, and once sat in the cockpit of "Red Dwarf"'s Starbug.  

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Every Theory About What's Going On With Jack Crusher In Star Trek: Picard Season 3

Ed Speleers, Star Trek: Picard

This post contains spoilers for "Star Trek: Picard" season 3 episode 8.

Jack Crusher (Ed Speleers) is straight-up not having a good time. The long-lost son of Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) and Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden) has gone full post-Upside-Down Will Byers in the latest episodes of "Star Trek: Picard." He's haunted by visions of branch-like tendrils and a red door, plagued by nightmares, and in possession of some strange energy that turns his eyes red. He also seems to be developing superpowers; Jack took down a whole crew worth of Changelings as if on autopilot, and he can talk to Sidney La Forge (Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut) with his mind.

With Deanna (Marina Sirtis) finally on the case, it looks like we'll find out about Jack's mysterious past next week, and if "Star Trek: Picard" keeps up the trend its established in its first two seasons, a major Trek-verse reveal is sure to follow by the finale. At the end of episode eight, Deanna proclaims: "there's a darkness with that boy." She clarifies that he's not to blame, saying that the voice is "not in him but around him, passing through him, and a voice inside him, ancient and weak, but a voice that isn't his own." Then she sits with Jack in hopes of figuring out once and for all what's behind the red door.

Theories about Jack's true nature abound among "Star Trek" fans, ranging from the likely to the outlandish. While we'll have to wait at least a week to get to the bottom of Jack's backstory once and for all, that just gives us even more time to parse through every possible option. Here's every theory we can think of about what the heck is up with Jack Crusher.

Jack has Borg genetic material

Back in 2366, Picard was forcibly assimilated into the Borg Collective, the powerful, dangerous cyborg hive mind that is constantly in world domination mode. There, Picard's body was taken over and renamed Locutus, and while he has long-since shed his Borg status, the Starfleet officer has been haunted by his experiences with the Borg ever since. While the Borg got a positive PR makeover at the end of last season after Alison Pill's Jurati took over as Borg Queen, season 2 co-showrunner Terry Matalas has since confirmed on Twitter at the time that hers was an alternate timeline offshoot , meaning the real Borg is still a real threat.

One of the most popular and evidence-backed theories about Jack Crusher is that Picard's biological material was altered by his Borg experience, leading to his conceiving a baby with latent Borg-like abilities. We've seen before that Borg are capable of assimilation on a microscopic level via nanoprobes, and it's possible that a bit of Borg remained in Picard even after he left the collective behind.

This would explain a lot of things about Jack, including his ability to have a hive mind-like experience with Sidney, his ability to take over a crew member's motor functions, and Vadic's (Amanda Plummer) comment in response: "Look at you, finally living up to all your potential." There's also the quickly-glossed-over fact that Data (Brent Spiner) tells the crew that Altan Soong (also Spiner) found an "anomalous form" in Picard's body that makes his initial Irumodic Syndrome diagnosis questionable. Could the form be residual Borg material?

Jack is related to Project Khan

There's also the possibility that Jack's origin could herald back to another great "Star Trek" character; Khan. While Khan Noonien-Singh has been dead for a long time when "Star Trek: Picard" picks up, the villain's name appeared on a paper file that Soong appeared interested in during the show's season 2 finale. It was labeled "Project Kahn," and we haven't heard anything about it since. Is it possible that Soong or someone who worked under him purposely created a genetically modified human with special abilities?

While season 3 hasn't mentioned Khan at all, "Star Trek: Picard" co-creator Alex Kurtzman did compare this season's villain to Khan at Comic Con last year. While he appears to have been referencing the mind games unfolding between Vadic and Picard, it's possible the reference was more literal than Kurtzman was willing to let on. If Jack did have these shadowy origins, it would make sense for him to lead a planet-hopping life, for Vadic to have a vested interest in finding him, and for him to end up with a unique, still-mysterious medical diagnosis like Irumodic Syndrome.

In this theory, as with several others, the red door in Jack's head is simply a mental block keeping his repressed memories in check. This type of mental visualization is commonly used in regression therapy and other methods used to dive deep into past traumas.

Jack is a Changeling (in either sense of the word)

With all the talk of Changelings this season, it would be weird to not explore the possibility that they may have something to do with Jack Crusher. After all, they went to great lengths to hunt the man down, and Vadic said she wants to bring Jack to "where he most belongs." If he somehow has Changeling-related genetic material, that would be in the Great Link, the place where all Changelings live in their liquid form.

If Jack were somehow part-Changeling, his ability to control others' bodies would make sense, as would the voices that seem to urge him to come to them. In this case, the red door that haunts his subconscious mind could be the entryway to the Great Link, a place that some part of him knows he needs to return to even as he remains in human form. This isn't the tidiest theory (how would Jack have become part-Changeling in the first place?) and it's also not the most interesting, but it's nonetheless a slight possibility.

Pretty much every theory on this list could also be supplemented by the idea that Jack is the traditional type of Changeling — a baby who was swapped at birth for an imposter. If the real Jack Crusher was switched out for a genetically modified baby (whether he's part-Changling or part something else entirely), it would make sense that the people who put him there long ago would come looking for him years later.

Jack is the key to Picard's future evolution

It would also make sense for "Star Trek: Picard" to bow out with something huge, giving the beloved captain a send-off that rocks the world of "Star Trek" forever. So why not ascension? Often portrayed as a sort of evolutionary leveling-up into pure energy, ascension is a beautiful transformation that also looks like a death of sorts. It's appeared a few times throughout "Star Trek," though it's sometimes called transcendence, too.

In one of many Reddit posts in which fans have theorized about Jack's true nature, user Lokan posited that Picard might be experiencing Irumodic Syndrome because his synthetic body is unable to ascend. If any main character in "Star Trek" history seems wise enough to unlock the secrets to the next step of evolution, it might be Picard.

As another Reddit user points out , Q ( John de Lancie ) may have hinted at some grand purpose for Picard in the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" series finale, when he told Picard that his future entails "charting the unknowable possibilities of existence." Could Picard be on track to join the Q continuum? And while Picard 2.0 might not be able to evolve, perhaps Jack can — or his genetics can help his father figure out what's stopping the process.

Does this explain Jack's powers? Not in the slightest. Is it still a cool idea that gets to the heart of the compassion, curiosity, and limitless horizons that "Star Trek" is often all about? Definitely!

Jack is a human with a powerful genetic mutation

There's also a decent chance that Jack is actually fully human, but simply possesses a unique mutation that the Changelings have deemed important. We haven't heard about examples of Irumodic Syndrome outside of the Picard family, so there's a chance the disorder could actually be something genetic and unique that allows Jack to experience the world on a higher level than those around him. When Picard and Beverly point out Vadic's "advanced physiology," she shoots back, "What about your son? Do you know all about his physiology?"

Picard's own working theory around the time of Vadic's death was that the Changelings had a plan for him and Jack that involved his body (as in, the stolen one) and Jack's blood. This combination would be used to do something dastardly and potentially world-changing on Frontier Day. Is it possible that Picard has recessive traits that appeared in Jack, allowing him to either save or destroy humanity depending on who unlocks them first? It's a huge guess, but the fallout of another attack on Frontier Day could also be huge.

Jack is being controlled by the Pah-Wraiths

One of the most fun answers to Jack's mysterious visions would be one that doubles as a deep-cut reference to a totally different "Star Trek" show, and one that "Star Trek: Picard" has been paying homage to all season: "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine." In that series, a rather metaphysical presence called the Pah-Wraiths often took to possessing people, giving them dark visions and dreams not unlike the ones Jack has been experiencing all season.

The Pah-Wraiths first appeared in "Star Trek: Deep Space Nine" as a sinister offshoot of the Bajoran Prophets. Those mystical beings live outside of time and have the god-like ability to see the future. Their enemies, the Pah-Wraiths, have similar powers but seem to have become corrupted along the way.

The only problem with the potential inclusion of the Pah-Wraiths in "Star Trek: Picard" is that the show hasn't dropped hints about them at all, unless Commander Ro Laren's Bajoran earring — in which she hid a chip including secret research on the Changelings — counts. Eight episodes into the season, a Pah-Wraith appearance in a show that's never acknowledged their existence might feel a bit like a deus ex machina.

Jack is related to Species 8472

Physical mimickry has been a hot topic in "Star Trek: Picard" this year thanks to the Changelings, so it only makes sense that other species capable of impersonating their enemies have come up frequently in chatter around the show. Since the season's mysteries began to unfold, several Reddit users have name-dropped Species 8472, a powerful, Borg-killing alien race that appeared in "Star Trek: Voyager." Though members of Species 8472 look a lot more like a classic sci-fi movie alien than a humanoid being, they're also capable of communicating telepathically and disguising themselves as other life forms through advanced technologies.

The going theory among fans doesn't seem to be that Jack is actually part of Species 8472, but that he's perhaps been modified or infected by the ruthless and highly evolved species as a pawn in some larger conflict. This would align with Deanna's assertion that there's darkness "with" him but "not in him." However, this theory doesn't seem likely for the same reason that the Pah-Wraith theory seems doomed to fail; "Star Trek: Picard" hasn't re-introduced us to Species 8472, and it would be weird to drop them in at the last minute.

Jack is the Dawn Summers of it all

This whole season of "Star Trek: Picard" has hinged on our instant acceptance of Jack Crusher as Picard's long-lost son, but his appearance felt sudden. In fact, it was so sudden that it got me wondering: what if the series is taking a page not out of the "Star Trek" rulebook, but the "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" one?

In the fifth season of "Buffy," our hero suddenly gained a little sister, Dawn (Michelle Trachtenberg), whose inexplicable appearance remained unexplained for several episodes. While most "Trek" fans agree that it's likely that Jack's physiology was altered at some point, the common consensus seems to be that it was when he was a baby or before his birth. But what if Jack still is technically a baby? Is it possible that he blipped into existence a few years before we met him, just long enough ago to earn his reputation as a Federation criminal?

I'll be honest; there's really very little to support this theory besides my own distrust of main characters who appear way late in the game claiming to have a long history. If Jack were created as a teen or young adult, be it by a mad scientist or enemy of Picard, he and Beverly's actions would only make sense if they were lying or had their memories wiped (the latter of which might explain Beverly's voice in Jack's dreams ).

Still, with so much timeline fiddling in the show's second season, not to mention both the vision whispers and Vadic referencing Jack's return to a place he's seemingly meant to be, it's possible Picard's offspring could have an inorganic origin story that doesn't line up with what we've heard so far. 

It's probably the Borg thing, though.

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star trek jack crusher red eyes

Star Trek: Picard’s Red Door – What Lies Beyond?

Zach Roberts

Star Trek: Picard  has hit solidly for three full weeks now, giving us more and more to discuss with each passing moment. Every re-watch brings something new and intriguing to the playing field to discuss. And this week’s episode certainly keeps up the tradition! Star Trek : Picard’s Red Door appears in a vision via another near-death experience for Jack Crusher (Ed Speleers). Therefore, adding to the mystery now burrowing its way through the final season!

As with all articles relating to  Star Trek: Picard , there will be spoilers, so read on at your own peril! If you haven’t seen episode 3 yet, I suggest you hold off for now!

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Jack’s Veterium Dream

Jack Crusher’s time on the U.S.S. Titan has certainly not been off to the best start. He’s been arrested, hunted, attacked and left to die. One has to wonder whether Jack’s just unlucky. Or does he have the same streak as his father to walk into things unexpectedly? As Doctor Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden) said, “If you’re the son of Jean Luc Picard, you have a target on your back.” And it appears Jack’s is nearly as large as his father’s!

Attempting to defend himself against the Changeling (Chad Lindberg), Jack is thrown against the bulkhead. He loses his mask, exposing him to lethal doses of Veterium gas. As Seven Of Nine’s (Jeri Ryan) words echo in the distance while Jack struggles to breathe, he sees another Seven, blurred and backed by red, growing branches. He is told to “Come to me. Find Me. Connect the Branches. We’ll be together soon. Find me,” he sees flashes of storms, clouds and lightning before a red door opens ever so slightly. Found by the real Seven, Jack is dragged to Sick Bay.

This is where Star Trek: Picard’s Red Door appears. During Jack’s gas-infused dreams. But what is this door all about? Does it connect with our Changeling attackers? Or is it a deeper Star Trek lore connection we are missing? Let’s dig deeper!

star trek jack crusher red eyes

Connections across Space?

But what is all of this? To investigate further, we look ever so slightly into the real-world meanings of Red, Storms and lightning. In dreams, red is supposed to be a need to respond quickly. You are confronting an unfamiliar problem and are ill-prepared. The lightning and storm represent struggle, hardship and caution in yourself. You don’t like not knowing. It shows that you know what is right but don’t always take the correct path, mistrusting those around you. 

Could this Veterium-induced hallucination be Jack Crusher and his inner turmoil coming into play? It could be. However, this is likely something or someone contacting Jack. We know the storm the Titan has entered registers’ electronic and biological signatures. Could it be possible that something in the nebula is trying to contact Jack? Using his weakened state as a gateway to warn him? A red door can signify a welcoming friend and connection to a more spiritual plain. Which leads to… The Changeling. 

star trek jack crusher red eyes

The Changeling Face Of Evil

We also know that the Changelings split after the war, with a terrorist cell refusing to accept defeat. That means there are good Changelings out there and bad ones. Changelings have telepathic ability, as displayed in the  Star Trek: Deep Space Nine  (DS9) Episode “Things Past”. When plasma energy created a mini-link between Odo, Garak, Jadzia and Sisko, they all experienced the same nightmarish memories. And Odo himself was subject to hidden information and false truths during his trial in DS9 “Broken Link.”

In the  DS9  Episode “Chimera”, we learn that Changelings can exist as space creatures in the vacuum of space. And the Founders did send One Hundred of their ‘Children’ into the vastness of space. Could there be a Changeling in the Ryton System’s Nebula, possibly a traitor amongst traitors, trying to help? Or one of the Hundred, surviving alone all these years. Adapted a change by the Nebula and what lies beyond Federation space…

star trek jack crusher red eyes

A Crush(er)ing Veterium Nightmare

For Jack Crusher, this could be the beginning of something a bit more unsettling for him. And by his current streak, this could certainly bring into question a few more details about him and what makes him tick. Is Jack Crusher really who we think he is? Or is there something more sinister underlying? The Red Door could be the beginning, and as we’ve seen with nightmarish dreams in Star Trek Picard , they never end well!

As long as Jack Crusher doesn’t open a portal to the Synthetic Realm, the crew of the Titan should be able to weather whatever comes their way! For now, we must play the long game, waiting to see what the writers of Picard have in store for us. One thing is for certain, as final seasons go, it most certainly is going off with a bang!

Star Trek: Picard Season 3 airs on Paramount+ in the United States and on CTV Sci-Fi Channel and Crave in Canada. However, the series will be available on Amazon’s Prime Video service for most international locations in the following days. For coverage of all things Star Trek: Picard Season 3, follow Trek Central!

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Published Apr 6, 2023

EXCLUSIVE: The Parents Weigh in on Star Trek: Picard’s ‘LaCrush’ Budding Romance

Does Jack Crusher and Sidney La Forge have the blessing of LeVar Burton and Gates McFadden?

Illustrated art featuring Star Trek: Picard's Jack Crusher and Sidney La Forge / Rob DeHart

SPOILER WARNING: Discussion for Star Trek: Picard Season 3, Episode 7 "Dominion" to follow!

On Star Trek: Picard , in between the threats on the lives of those aboard the U.S.S. Titan -A, two legacy kids have found something, or someone, that has caught their eye.

Sidney La Forge and Jack Crusher

Both Jack Crusher , the son of Admiral Jean-Luc Picard and Dr. Beverly Crusher , and Sidney La Forge , the daughter of Commodore Geordi La Forge , have the weight of the galaxy on their shoulders living in the shadow of their legendary parents. Something they’ve both commiserated together in “ The Bounty ,” when the young Crusher clocks the less than “warm and cuddly” interaction between the Titan ’s helmsman with her father upon her family’s arrival.

In addition to navigating their complicated relationships with their fathers, they’re both grappling with outsider tendencies. Perhaps, that’s why they both find it easiest to connect with Commander Seven, as seen in “ Seventeen Seconds ” and “The Bounty.” However, Jack and Sidney appear to be open to allowing another person into their guarded lives as they playfully yet awkwardly flirt following their cloaking device heist, testing the waters to see if they would like to “hang out.”

Jack Crusher's hand grazes Sidney La Forge's hand in the turbolift

In “Dominion,” Jack inadvertently reads Sidney’s minds as his hand grazes her, reminiscent of when Jean-Luc and Beverly were privy to each other’s thoughts in “ Attached ” ( Star Trek: The Next Generation ). The unease grows when Vadic and her crew board the Titan and Jack and Sidney find themselves trapped by a Changeling assailant. In providing Sidney aid, Jack’s newfound powers allow them to access each other’s thoughts as well as allow him to guide her movements as she fights the Changeling. Following the rather invasive but necessary act, Sidney is unsure what to make of Jack.

Ensign Sidney La Forge stands with her hands on her hips looking over at Jack Crusher who stares out ahead of him had the opportunity to speak with Ed Speleers (Jack Crusher), Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut (Sidney La Forge), Gates McFadden (Beverly Crusher), and LeVar Burton (Geordi La Forge) on their thoughts on “ LaCrush .”

On building Jack Crusher’s rapport with Sidney La Forge, Ed Speleers lavishes heaps of praise for Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut, “What a great, great actor, very committed. Makes it so easy as well as frustrating. I feel like I have to do so much work; I’m sure she does as well but she makes it look so easy. It just comes naturally to her. She’s a wonderful talent and great fun to be around on set. There’s a nice little freestyle building between those two characters, which brings me back to my point that we need to see more!”

Jack Crusher smiles as he looks to his right at Picard

Unable to tell too much at the start of the season, Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut offers this nugget of advice on how to navigate a Starfleet romance, “Hypothetically, if there is a romance, you might want to keep it under wraps, especially if your father is on board.

And does the internet-christened “LaCrush” have their parents’ approvals? Gates McFadden, whose Beverly Crusher knows a thing about workplace romances, advises, “You have to go with your instincts, always respect the other person, and always respect your friends. And if you’re having great pheromones, well, you’ve got to do what you got to do.” You know what they say, mothers know best.

The La Forge sisters, Ensign Alandra and Ensign Sidney, stand side-by-side on the bridge of the Titan

How about fathers? When asked how he felt that Sidney La Forge had the eye of one of his friend’s son, LeVar Burton, firmly but jovially, states, “I expressed it as the character I thought pretty clearly, ‘Get the hell away from my daughter!’”

With the ability to hear each other’s thoughts, will Sidney and Jack move closer to a place of understanding and greater intimacy like Jean-Luc and Beverly once did? Will Jack heed the Commodore’s demand? With three more episodes left for the season, tune in and find out!

Christine Dinh (she/her) is the managing editor for She’s traded the Multiverse for helming this Federation starship.

In addition to streaming on Paramount+, Star Trek: Picard will also stream on Prime Video outside of the US and Canada, and in Canada can be seen on Bell Media's CTV Sci-Fi Channel and streams on Crave.

Stay tuned to for more details! And be sure to follow @StarTrek on Facebook , Twitter , and Instagram .

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‘Star Trek: Picard’ Season 3 Episode 5 Recap: Old Friends Deliver Fighting Chances

An unexpected face from 'The Next Generation' turns up to give Picard a fighting chance against the Changelings.

With Vadic ( Amanda Plummer ) and the Shrike far behind them, one might assume that Jean-Luc Picard ( Patrick Stewart ) and the crew of the U.S.S. Titan are finally on the path to safety in the fifth episode of Star Trek: Picard ’s final season, but that isn’t the case. The full scale of the Changelings' plot begins to come into focus in the aptly titled “Imposters,” and no one could have predicted just how widespread the danger is—both near and far.

The episode, directed by Dan Liu and written by Cindy Appel and Chris Derrick , opens quite serenely with the bridge crew of the Titan making preparations to get the starship back into working order after their near-death stint in the nebula, but the peace is quickly shattered when a Starfleet uniform-clad Jack Crusher ( Ed Speleers ) steps onto the bridge to murder everyone. Luckily, for everyone involved, this terrifying episode is just a nightmare, but when Jack awakens from it, he is clutching a blaster, which suggests that maybe, just maybe, there’s something very real—and very wrong—at play. To his credit, Jack seems rightfully disturbed by the situation, but after two episodes of ominous red doors and creepy voices , Star Trek: Picard seems to be making a point that there’s something larger at play here for Jack. Just when it seems like he may be past this weird incident, his eyes turn red and that same creepy voice whispers: “Jack, come home.”

Elsewhere aboard the Titan , Picard, Riker ( Jonathan Frakes ), Seven ( Jeri Ryan ), and Captain Shaw ( Todd Stashwick ) convene to discuss the Changeling situation aboard the ship. After Riker hands control back over to Shaw, Shaw reveals that he already took the liberty of contacting Starfleet to report everything that has happened, including their misdeeds. He asks Seven if she wants to face the music reinstated, and she doesn’t even hesitate to ask to be reinstated. Picard vows to bear the brunt of the punishment since he was the one that orchestrated the whole takeover, and Shaw seems mightily pleased with the prospect that Picard might finally have to pay for his actions.

RELATED: 'Star Trek: Picard' Season 3 Showrunner on Getting an F-Bomb Into the Series

Picard sets off to tell Beverly ( Gates McFadden ) and Jack that Starfleet are on their way to question the crew of the Titan , and Beverly is quick to point out that this situation with the Changelings is far from over. After all, how did the Changelings get onboard the Titan weeks before Picard was even made aware of the situation that Beverly and Jack were facing on the fringes of Federation space? Keen to continue investigating the situation, Beverly sets off back to the sick bay, while Jack lingers to speak with his father. In the wake of his nightmare, Jack clearly seems nervous about anything to do with Starfleet, which makes Picard’s suggestion that he should consider a life within Starfleet after the dust has settled even more alarming. Even without the nightmare, Jack has good reason to turn it down—Starfleet would put a crimp in his lifestyle as a rogue medic. While Picard very clearly wants to stay in Jack and Beverly’s lives, Jack doesn’t seem as excited by the prospect.

When the U.S.S. Intrepid arrives to investigate the situation aboard the Titan , something seems immediately off about the whole thing. Seven and Shaw are the first to find it suspicious that, rather than using the transporter to beam aboard, the Intrepid sends over the investigators on shuttles. With a very uneasy vibe setting in, Picard asks Seven for one more favor—which turns Jack’s nightmare into reality. Taking heed of Beverly’s warning that the Changeling plot is far from over, Picard’s plan with Seven is to help Jack blend in right in plain sight—which means dressing him up in a Starfleet uniform, which he does put on.

Picard is ever-hopeful that he and Riker won’t get into too much trouble, banking on their vast career as galaxy-savers to smooth things over. Shaw, given the bad blood between him and Picard, isn’t as convinced that their legacy is enough to save them. Especially not when they’ve made a lot of mistakes which they had to save the galaxy from too. Picard’s hope for a smooth investigation quickly vanishes when he recognizes a familiar face among the Intrepid ’s crew: Ro Laren ( Michelle Forbes ). Picard is immediately on the defensive, still clearly troubled by what went down on Star Trek: The Next Generation , when she was just Ensign Ro.

Picard and Ro had a complicated relationship during her time aboard the Enterprise , a fact that still seems to weigh heavily on both of them. Despite being the driving force behind Ro defecting to the Maquis, Picard still sees it as an ultimate betrayal—further compounded by the fact that Ro has come aboard the Titan now to claim Picard is a traitor. To her credit, Ro tries to be reasonable with Picard, explaining what their plan is for interrogation, what his rights are, and that they plan to transport most of the crew over to the Intrepid . In an attempt to convince Picard that she isn’t a Changeling, Ro slices her hand open to prove that she bleeds, but he’s fully aware the Changelings they’re dealing with might be capable of bleeding like anyone else.

In sickbay, Beverly and Dr. Ohk ( Tiffany Shepis ) have brought Ensign La Forge ( Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut ) in to confirm that the dead Changeling that looks like her, is indeed not her. Unlike previous run-ins with Changelings, this particular Changeling has retained its previous form after being killed—instead of turning back into goo. Beverly discovers that this new breed of Changeling has blood, which allows it to pass the required Starfleet blood testing, meaning anyone aboard the Titan could be a Changeling: confirming Picard’s concerns on the other side of the ship. As they continue running diagnostics on the corpse, they discover that not only can this newly evolved species pass blood tests, but they can replicate human organs.

After making this discovery, Beverly reaches out to Picard who is still being interrogated by Ro. Picard quickly makes it clear that their conversation is not private, and Beverly smoothly explains that she’s relaying some sort of medical test to him, which he claims are personal health scans. With the brief reprieve that Ro allows him, Picard retrieves Beverly’s message, which once again urges him to “trust no one.” With this new knowledge, Picard is even more suspicious of Ro and the fact that she isn’t asking any hard questions about the situation. Recognizing that he thinks she may be a Changeling, she dives into their history and fills in the blanks between the last time they saw each other now, but still, she sidesteps the more personal questions Picard tries to strike at. Shifting gears, Ro requests to see the Changeling remains they have aboard the Titan , which is all a ruse to get Picard alone and far away from prying eyes. In a very surprising turn, she pulls her phaser on him and herds him into the holodeck which is still set up to look like 10 Forward. Despite having a phaser trained on him, Picard slides behind the bar and offers to make her drink, which is a ruse in and of itself. The holodeck is a perfect replica of 10 Forward, including the phaser that Guinan had stashed behind it.

Once again, Picard brings up the fact that Ro isn’t wearing her Bajoran earring, which was a source of great controversy because it technically broke Starfleet protocol, though he had bent the rules for her when she was aboard the Enterprise . Their conversation shifts quite sharply, with Picard claiming that this is a conversation he has been waiting to have for thirty years. He’s quick to lash out and tell her that she betrayed everything he had ever believed in, but Ro meets his words with harsh truths of her own. She accuses him of trying to mold her in his own image, something that she was never going to be able to achieve—which is evident in how their arc played out on The Next Generation . The betrayal was mutual, but Picard set her up to fail by expecting more than she could give. After a heartfelt confession that they both broke each other’s hearts, Ro and Picard lower their weapons and return to the far more pressing matter at hand. Locked away on the holodeck, far from suspicious ears, Ro admits that Starfleet has been compromised all the way to the highest levels and, despite everything that has happened between them, she asks Picard to trust her again.

Ro goes on to explain that she has been investigating what appears to be a widespread Changeling plot, though every time she gets close to finding answers she’s locked out. For months there have been fleet-wide issues, which have been covered up, and she is convinced that something is going to happen on Frontier Day when all the fleets are present. Despite the grandeur of the event and the all-hands nature of it, she has found herself largely locked out of the planning—leading her to believe the Changelings are behind it. She also tells Picard that she has been hearing Jack’s name on intelligence chatter for months: someone wants something from him, and it all seems connected.

Speaking of Jack, he is doing a terrible job of keeping a low profile while a pair of security engineers from the Intrepid are prowling the ship looking for him. With most of the crew of the Titan being transported aboard the Intrepid , Jack finds himself in the transporter room fantasizing about killing the transporter officer. He is still hearing voices, though now the voice is saying “Find me. Connect us. Do you hear me?” It’s all very ominous stuff, especially with the glowing red eyes, and the unsettling desire to kill Starfleet officers. On the other side of the galaxy, Raffi ( Michelle Hurd ) and Worf ( Michael Dorn ) are training aboard La Sirena . Worf is still intent on figuring out what the Changelings stole from Daystrom, but their investigation is coming up short for two, very different reasons. Sneed was their only lead and since Worf had to kill him to save Raffi’s neck—they can’t pursue that lead anymore. Also, Starfleet is continuing to deny them access when they try to investigate that avenue, leading them to believe that someone wants to keep them out. Worf deduces that their only remaining lead is a criminal by the name of Krinn who worked alongside Sneed.

When they arrive at District 6, they very quickly realize that something is amiss. Everyone is running and hiding and clearing out the streets. It would seem that after killing Sneed, everyone in the city fears them now. Raffi attempts to take advantage of the situation, shouting that they’re looking for Sneed’s associate Krinn, but it backfires. Quite a bit. Krinn does show up, and he’s furious that they killed Sneed, who was essentially his brother even though he is a Vulcan and the latter was a Ferengi. Krinn swiftly sees through the little trap that Worf and Raffi set for him and takes them hostage, with a plan to force them to fight to the death.

Leaning back on their training sequence from the top of the episode, Raffi and Worf reluctantly engage in combat, which leads to Raffi gaining the upper hand and stabbing Worf. In a heart-wrenching moment, Worf says the iconic line, “Today was a good day to die.” and seemingly keels over dead. Luckily, “Imposters” doesn’t make the audience wait too long to learn that they didn’t actually kill off one of the most beloved characters in the franchise. But what’s important is that Krinn believes that the Klingon is dead just long enough to be lulled into a false sense of security, allowing Worf to come through and kill everyone. Krinn was the one that orchestrated the break-in at Daystrom and, at knifepoint, he reveals that the facility is guarded by a flawed and illogical AI system. He happened to find a device that exploits its flaws, and without this device, no one else can get into Daystrom undetected. And, as any intelligent Vulcan would realize, he admits that providing them with the device would be the most logical course of action.

On the Titan , things are starting to reach another crisis point. Ro informs Picard that her plan is to leave them with a skeleton crew of hopefully non-Changeling crewmembers, and tells him that they are going to have to run. Before they part ways, in the midst of a tearful goodbye, Ro leaves Picard with the earring that has been such a hot topic throughout the episode. Befuddled, but recognizing the peril they are most likely in, Picard goes straight to Shaw to inform him that they’re going to have to run away because things are so much worse than they could’ve imagined.

Aboard Ro’s shuttle back to the Intrepid , she realizes that her two security engineers (the pair that has been looking for Jack on the Titan ) have planted a bomb on the ship, and before she can stop them, or kill them, they beam back onto the Titan . Ro hails the Titan to tell them what happened, but she refuses Picard’s desperate attempts to offer help because there’s no time for her to defuse the bomb. Instead, Ro navigates the shuttle towards the Intrepid , crashing into it as the bombs go off. This, in her own words, is an attempt to give Picard a fighting chance. With part of the Intrepid smoldering in space, the starship turns on the Titan , and they quickly realize they are about to be framed for “attacking” another Starfleet vessel. Before anyone can get too carried away, Seven cautions them that they can’t fire on the Intrepid because they will kill their crew members which were taken aboard it. Riker pleads with Shaw to trust them, just as he trusts what his own eyes have seen, and Shaw informs the remaining crew aboard the ship that Starfleet has been compromised.

As this message is broadcast across the Titan , the pair of Changeling security engineers finally track down Jack and are joined by another set of dubious Starfleet officers. Cornered, and seemingly about to be captured, Jack sees the eerie red door again and—for lack of a better descriptor—goes apeshit on the officers. With super-human strength, he takes out all four of them, as if it were the easiest thing in the world. The door returns again and this time it doesn’t seem like a far-off vision: this door appears to be right at the end of the corridor. But nearly as soon as it appears, it vanishes, leaving Jack to take in what he just did. While this encounter wasn’t exactly what played out in his nightmare, it’s awfully suspicious that he knew he would have to take out a handful of Starfleet officers—Changelings, or otherwise.

The Titan manages to jump to warp before the Intrepid can attack them, and now that things have settled down for a few minutes, Picard and Riker have a little heart-to-heart about Ro. Picard admits that he didn’t realize just how much it would affect him to see her, and perhaps the subtext there is that he also didn’t realize how much it would affect him to lose her too. Riker is sympathetic, as he has always been with the complex connection between Picard and Ro. What confuses Picard the most is that Ro left him with the earring, which Riker quickly recognizes for what it is: a smartly concealed data chip. As they look through all the information that Ro had collected over the past few months, they intercept an incoming transmission from Worf who is both glad to see old friends, but concerned about Ro’s absence.

In sickbay, Shaw commends Jack for being able to take out four Changelings all by himself, which might just be the first nice thing Shaw has said to Jack since he came onboard. Beverly, however, recognizes that something is wrong with her son. She asks for a moment alone with him, wherein she tells him he can’t hide anything from her: she knows he hasn’t been sleeping again. Beverly reminds him of a time, many years ago when he was just a boy, when he was too afraid to sleep because of the nightmares he was having. She goes on to ask him how he knew that the officers he killed were Changelings and, with tears streaming down his cheeks, Jack admits that he didn’t know. As the episode comes to a close, Jack claims that there is something very wrong with him, and it’s easy to agree with him on that front.

As the second act of the final season of Star Trek: Picard begins, it appears the series is prompting its audience to look deeper into what we have already been told. Now that Worf and Raffi’s storyline is finally converging with the plot aboard the Titan , hopefully, more answers will be answered in the following episode—both with the Changelings, and perhaps whatever is plaguing Jack. Why do the Changelings want him, and more importantly, who and what is he supposed to “connect” with?

The first five episodes of the final season of Star Trek: Picard are streaming now on Paramount+.

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What’s wrong with jack crusher in picard season 3.

Jack Crusher is told to "connect the branches" in a vision, is it the result of poisoned gas exposure, Irumodic Syndrome, or something more sinister?

WARNING: This article contains SPOILERS for Star Trek: Picard season 3, episode 3, "Seventeen Seconds." Jack Crusher (Ed Speelers) experiences a strange vision in Star Trek: Picard season 3, episode 3, leading to speculation that something is very wrong with the character. In "Seventeen Seconds", the USS Titan-A is still being pursued through the Ryton nebula by Captain Vadic (Amanda Plummer) and her formidable ship, the Shrike. As Captain Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes) is assumed command of the Titan, Admiral Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) comes to terms with Dr. Beverly Crusher's (Gates McFadden) decision to conceal his son's identity.

When the Titan's Captain Liam Shaw (Todd Stashwick) is seriously wounded, he asks Jack how the Shrike was able to continue tracking the Titan through the nebula. This led Jack and Commander Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan) to investigate an act of sabotage that allowed poison gas to escape from the ship. Confronted by the saboteur, Jack's gas mask was torn from his face, forcing him to inhale large quantities of the potentially fatal gas. As he struggled to maintain consciousness, he saw a vision of Seven instructing him to " connect the branches, " and Jack saw flashes of a storm, a rolling sea, and a mysterious red door. Here's what it could mean for Jack Crusher in Star Trek: Picard season 3.

RELATED: Is Jack Crusher's Name An Insult To Jean-Luc Picard?

What Happened To Jack Crusher In Picard Season 3, Episode 3?

The cause of Jack's vision is possibly the injury to his head from his fight with the saboteur, and his exposure to deadly gas. However, it's more likely that Jack's vision has something to do with the larger Star Trek: Picard season 3 story. As Jean-Luc Picard is Jack Crusher's father , it's possible that Jack is experiencing the strange visions because he has inherited his father's Irumodic Syndrome. An elderly Jean-Luc was living with Irumodic Syndrome in the Star Trek; The Next Generation finale, "All Good Things", which was believed to be the reason for his "shifts" into the past and present.

The ending of "All Good Things" confirmed that Picard didn't have Irumodic Syndrome, but did have a structural neurological defect that could lead to the condition developing in later life. It's possible, therefore, Jean-Luc could have passed the defect down to Jack through his genes. Jean-Luc's neurological defect led to Picard's death and resurrection in season 1 , so it would make sense for season 3 to address his condition once again, this time through his son, Jack. However, it's not the only explanation for what's happening to Jack in Star Trek: Picard season 3, episode 3.

Does Jack's Vision Tie Into Picard's DS9 Changeling Reveal?

Jack's discovery that one of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine 's Changelings is operating aboard the Titan coincides with the interrogation of the Changeling Titus Rikka (Thomas Dekker) by Captain Worf (Michael Dorn) and Commander Raffi Musiker (Michelle Hurd) on M'Talas Prime. Star Trek: Picard season 3, episode 3 cutting between both Changelings implies there's a link between Jack's vision and the rogue Changeling schism unearthed by Worf and Raffi. The brief flash of a landscape of rocks and rolling waves calls to mind the Great Link, home to all of DS9 's Changelings . The Link is a mass network of the Changelings in their liquid form, suggesting an alternate way to read the instruction to " connect the branches ".

This reading of Jack's vision creates the worrying possibility that the Jack Crusher aboard the Titan is actually a Changeling impersonator. Given that Jack is as shaken by the vision and revelations around a Changeling saboteur as the rest of the Titan, perhaps he's a sleeper agent awaiting activation. Now that DS9 's Changelings have been revealed to be the villains of Star Trek: Picard season 3, it would appear that nobody, not even the son of Jean-Luc Picard and Beverly Crusher, can be trusted completely.

MORE: Picard's Forgotten Other Son In Star Trek TNG Explained

Star Trek: Picard Season 3 streams Thursdays on Paramount+.


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