It’s been an exciting year for Star Trek fans! From Discovery’s shocking second season to all the news about the upcoming Star Trek: Picard series, there’s plenty for fans to celebrate as they reflect on the year that’s passed. To make sure you don’t forget a single moment, we’re looking back at all the best Star Trek moments from 2019.
2019 also saw the relaunch of StarTrek.com. In a letter posted to the site, executive producer and showrunner Alex Kurtzman wrote:
"Much like the crews on our series who become family on screen and off, we’re keenly aware that the Trek fandom community is a uniquely close and protective one. And so, aside from news and updates, our goal is to have something for every member of our family on StarTrek.com — from the queer scientists who took inspiration from George Takei; to the women who found, in Trek, the role models that were lacking in other media; to the people of color who found their cultures represented — period — in science fiction television; to the fans who’ve managed to arrive at careers where Star Trek influences them every single day."
We are also now commissioning new stories from writers around the world to share new perspectives and an intersectional examination of the franchise. You can read all about our favorite freelancer posts of the year right here.
Star Trek: Discovery re-introduces fans to a few favorites
Star Trek: Discovery season two featured some familiar faces when the crew of the Discovery ran into the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise, captained by one Christopher Pike (Anson Mount) and his trusted first officer Number One (Rebecca Romijn). Fans know Pike from unaired The Original Series pilot “The Cage” and the episodes “The Menagerie - Part One and Two,” as well as from the Kelvin films. Here we get to see a fresh take on him as played by Mount.
There was also Burnham’s famous brother, Spock (Ethan Peck), who played a large role in the season as well. This Spock is younger, and somewhat different from the Spock we meet during TOS; he gets to grow into the character we are more familiar with. These beloved characters were integral to the second season and set up a whole new world of adventure, as well as the promise of the Enterprise’s future adventures with The Original Series.
Discovery takes a leap of faith...
Star Trek: Discovery boldly went where no Trek has gone before: nine centuries into the future. In the season finale, Burnham and the crew of the Discovery traveled through time, ending up far, far into Starfleet’s future. Starfleet seals all records that contain any mention of Discovery and her crew, and Spock vows to never speak of his sister again, though the siblings get some closure as Burnham sends Spock a signal that she and the crew survived their trip.
With the show now set long after the events of The Original Series, Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise, the future of the universe becomes more open to exploration. The show can now explore brave new worlds and seek out new life and civilizations far away from familiar faces such as Pike and Spock and the known timeline. And where will these bold new adventures lead them? We’ll have to wait until 2020 to find out.
...and wins big!
Wrapping up a huge year, the Star Trek: Discovery team won its first Emmy. The show took home an award for outstanding prosthetic makeup for a series, limited series, movie or special. In addition, Discovery was nominated for Emmys in Outstanding Main Title Design, Outstanding Sound Editing for a Comedy or Drama (One Hour), and Outstanding Special Visual Effects.
Congratulations to an incredible team on a much deserved #Emmy win for OUTSTANDING PROSTHETIC MAKEUP! #GlennHetrick #NevillePage #JamesMacKinnon #HugoVillasenor #RockyFaulkner #ChrisBridges #NicolaBendry #MikeOBrien #StarTrekDiscovery pic.twitter.com/MPfePZlhMf— Alex Kurtzman (@Alex_Kurtzman) September 16, 2019
The 2019 Saturn Awards recognized Discovery as well, with wins for Sonequa Martin-Green in Best Actress in a Streaming Presentation, and for Discovery overall in Best Streaming Science Fiction, Action & Fantasy Series. Ethan Peck, Doug Jones, and Wilson Cruz were all nominated against each other in Best Supporting Actor in a Streaming Presentation and we couldnt' have been moe thrilled!
Trek takes over the Paley Center
After Star Trek: Discovery’s shocking season finale, fans got the chance to peek behind the scenes with the Paley Center exhibit Star Trek: Discovery — Fight For the Future. This interactive exhibit at the Paley Center in Los Angeles gave fans a beautifully curated look at costumes, props, and concept art, showcasing how much work and passion went into bringing this new chapter of Starfleet history to life.
The exhibit ran from May until July, and fans shared photos on social media for those who were not able to travel to see it in person. You can find photos from the event here!
Star Trek beams down to SDCC
Starfleet beamed into the famed Hall H at San Diego Comic Con to massive crowds and huge excitement. While the franchise has always had a presence at one of the year’s geekiest events, this year the Star Trek Universe panel scored a spot at the biggest hall. Fans got to look back on Star Trek: Discovery and look ahead to Star Trek: Picard and Star Trek: Lower Decks, with plenty of guests and surprises that thrilled the packed hall, including a major reveal about Picard.
This was a highlight in a year packed full of exciting Star Trek moments, and hopefully, this is the beginning of the franchise’s SDCC takeover!
The Star Trek: Picard trailer reveals some familiar faces
As if fans already couldn’t be more excited for Star Trek: Picard and the return of Sir Patrick Stewart, the trailers revealed at SDCC and NYCC showed that the captain was not the only familiar face who will be returning to our screens. Data (Brent Spiner), Seven of Nine (Jeri Ryan), and Will Riker (Jonathan Frakes) will also be joining Picard in the show. It was also revealed that Marina Sirtis’s Deanna Troi would also be appearing, as would Jonathan del Arco’s Hugh.
Seeing Picard join forces with his old TNG friends, including the dearly departed Data, as well as crossing over with another Trek series to ally with Voyager’s Seven of Nine, is something that can excite Trek fans as they anticipate the upcoming series. The big reveals made a huge impact at both conventions, and helped keep the hype levels at maximum for the coming series.
Star Trek gets animated
Star Trek has explored animation in the past with Star Trek: The Animated Series, but in 2019 fans got a look at a new animated universe at San Diego Comic Con. Star Trek: Lower Decks, from Mike McMahan, the author of the unofficial The Next Generation parody Warped: An Engaging Guide To the Never-Aired 8th Season, will focus the support crew of one of Starfleet’s less important starships as they go about their daily lives. This comedic take on Starfleet is set to debut in late 2020, so mark your calendars for the coming year.
We also learned about a new Nickelodeon show that will center on a group of teenagers who find a derelict starship and set out on an adventure. While not much is known about the show currently, we do know it will be aimed at younger audiences. With shows for all ages, this is a perfect way to get newer, younger viewers interested in exploring the vast Star Trek universe.
Star Trek Las Vegas 2019 and Destination Star Trek 2019
Star Trek Las Vegas, the biggest annual Trek con of the year, was a massive success, as were the various Destination Star Trek cons that happened around the world. These events draw countless fans and many cast members, and showcase the best of Trek fandom.
At STLV, kids said the darndest things and we were wowed by panels that showcased the science behind our favorite series. At Destination Star Trek Birmingham, fans got to hear the Star Trek: Discovery cast share their thoughts on character development and Sir Patrick Stewart compare his return in Picard to Logan.
For more adventures from the con, check out our galleries from Destination Star Trek and STLV, and then watch our video recapping the highlights of STLV 2019.
New merchandise was revealed
This year has also brought a whole host of awesome new products for Star Trek fans to add to their collection. Fans can pretend that they too have traveled to Chateau Picard with Star Trek inspired wines and assorted accessories, which is the perfect gift for a Picard fan eager for the new series.
For fitness fans, Body by Starfleet allows you to get the perfect Starfleet work out to keep yourself alive on those perilous away missions (presuming you’re not wearing a red shirt). Fans eager for information about Picard can check out the Star Trek: Picard — Countdown comic series that centers on the events that turn Picard into the character he is in the new series.
If you’ve always wanted a tribble, there’s an activated tribble that allows you to have your own furry friend without the risk of it reproducing so much that it takes over your home!
You can find these items and many more awesome Star Trek gifts in our annual gift guide here, or check out our video.
Short Treks debuts season two
The popular Star Trek: Short Treks series continued this year, filling in gaps and telling new stories. We saw more Pike, Spock, Number One, and even some tribbles in the latest Short Treks. The first,“Q&A,” featured Spock and Number One stuck in a turbolift, while “The Trouble With Edward” centered on the science officer from the USS Cabot, Edward Larkin (H. Jon Benjamin), modifying tribbles against his captain’s orders.
“Ask Not” was Pike centric, and told the story of Pike and a young ensign (Amrit Kaur) as they transport a dangerous prisoner. Fans also were treated to two animated Short Treks, the Burnham-led "The Girl Who Made The Stars" and the adorable "Ephraim and Dot." The second season of shorts has been immensely popular and given fans more Trek to love.
Major Trek milestones
2019 saw many iconic moments in Trek reaching a key anniversary. Star Trek: The Motion Picture turned 40 years old, and Star Trek III: The Search for Spock turned 35. Star Trek: Generations, which featured Picard and Kirk teaming up for the first time, turned 25, and the first of the Kelvin timeline films, Star Trek (2009), turned 10.
Major episodes also reached big milestones this year. TNG’s “Q Who” turned 30, and the show’s series finale “All Good Things...” turned 25. Deep Space Nine episode “Blood Oath” turned 25 too, as did “House of Quark.” Five years after TNG wrapped, DS9 series finale “What You Leave Behind, Part Two” had its 20 year anniversary. Enterprise’s “The Forge,” which redefined Vulcan culture, turned 15. If you needed a reason to celebrate and rewatch these episodes, now is most definitely the time.
Remembering those we’ve lost
On a far sadder note, the Star Trek family suffered several major losses throughout 2019. We said goodbye to Aron Eisenberg, René Auberjonois, and D.C. Fontana, as well as to several guest stars and writers who helped bring the universe to bright and vivid life. You can read about those Trek legends who passed on this year in greater detail in our article remembering them here.