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Star Trek: Picard - Review - Farewell: A Somewhat Satisfying End

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Warning: This review may contain spoilers.

After veering wildly off course for most of its second season Star Trek: Picard manages to bring the season to a somewhat satisfying conclusion in "Farewell." While the outcomes for some characters were very predictable, the show offered a few surprises in cobbling together several of its dangling storylines. Q (John de Lancie) being the one to send Picard (Patrick Stewart) and his team back to the future was a sure thing, as was Rios (Santiago Cabrera) choosing to stay in the past with Dr. Rivera (Sol Rodriguez) and her son. Despite taking an ax to Star Trek canon (depending on which timeline this season takes place), the season’s did offer several cast members the opportunity for some stellar work.
The twisted reasoning of why Q's actions necessitated Picard and his team's trip to the past was neither solid nor reasonable. Wanting to see his "friend" forgive himself and think himself worthy of love before Q's demise didn’t really justify Q's reckless actions, which cost Picard a minimum of four crew members. Even so, Stewart and de Lancie gave their best performances of the season with one another in those final scenes in the observatory and in the orchard.
The surprise identity of the Borg queen who had arrived on the Stargazer in the season premiere was a nice and unforeseen twist to this reviewer. The reappearance of Queen Borg Jurati capped off an award-worthy season of work from Alison Pill. It was also an interesting and canon-changing twist (again, depending on your chosen timeline) to have the Borg queen come seeking Picard and the Federation's help in preventing a galaxy-threatening event. Also, ending with the Borg becoming provisional members of the Federation and volunteering to remain at the wormhole to stand as guardians of the gate is a thought-provoking turn of events.
Hardly any show keeps a cameo secret anymore, but Wil Wheaton’s appearance as Wesley Crusher contributed nothing to the story. Having Wesley come as a Traveler to recruit the newly emancipated Kore (Isa Briones) was another confusing turn in her disappointing storyline this season. Kore's entire story had little to no impact, marking a major missed opportunity, especially with this being Briones’s final outing on the show. .
Briones will be joining Pill, Cabrera, and Evan Evagora (Elnor) as cast members not returning for Star Trek: Picard's third and final season. Was it essential for producers to cut more than half of their original cast to make room for returning original Star Trek: Next Generation crew next season? Wasn't there a story that could have incorporated them all? Orla Brady did exceptional work this season as the Watcher Tallin, who sacrifices herself for Renee Picard's (Penelope Mitchell) mission, and the long-suffering Laris, who gives the contrite Picard a second chance in the season's last moments. We can only hope the show wisely keeps her for at least part of the third season.
In brighter casting news, the show seems to be keeping Michelle Hurd and the luminous Jeri Ryan around for the final season as Raffi and field-promoted Starfleet Captain Seven of Nine. An even wiser move would be to keep Seven as the Stargazer's Captain and transfer Raffi over to the ship. Next, the ship could be designated the official Starfleet vessel of Admiral Picard to transport them during next season's adventures. This move would also open the door for a welcome appearance next season from Kate Mulgrew as Janeway, allowing for a well-earned reunion between Seven and her former mentor.
Despite all its flaws, Star Trek: Picard did manage to bring the season to a solid conclusion, thanks in large part to exceptional work from the cast, guest stars (hello Whoopi Goldberg), and a set up for a thrilling third season with the iconic Khan as the villain.

What are your thoughts on Star Trek: Picard episode 10 "Hide and Seek" and overall thoughts of season 2? Share them in the comments below.

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