Jonathan Frakes, best known for his iconic role as William T. Riker in Star Trek: The Next Generation has recently shared his thoughts on the future of his character and the potential for a new phase in the Star Trek franchise. With Picard’s third season bringing closure to many beloved characters, Frakes jested that the ideal situation for him would be to make Riker like Charlie from Charlie’s Angels. In other words, Riker would only appear briefly in each episode, leaving Frakes plenty of time to direct instead.
“In my mind, for the show to be able to move forward, Riker would have to be a captain and have his ship.”Jonathan Frakes on moving beyond Star Trek: Picard
According to Gizmodo, The emotional rollercoaster of Star Trek: Picard Season 3 culminated with a heartfelt reconciliation between Jonathan Frakes’ Riker and Deanna Troi, played by Marina Sirtis. Their relationship had been strained due to the tragic loss of their son. However, as the galaxy was saved and healing began, it has left fans wondering about the next chapter for Riker.
Jonathan Frakes had a few thoughts on the matter: “In my mind, for the show to be able to move forward, Riker would have to be a captain and have his ship.” He also suggested that another agreeable option would be for Riker to be promoted to admiral and liaison between the characters of Star Trek.
“It feels to me like there’s a real opportunity for three of the legacy characters’ children to carry on and sort of be the next Star Trek: The Next Generation.”Jonathan Frakes on Star Trek moving forward
He humorously added that the perfect way to continue the character would involve Riker becoming a sort of puppet master like Charlie from Charlie’s Angels, only orchestrating the adventures and not participating in them. “They’d have to come to my office one day a week for a meeting with Riker,” Jonathan Frakes said, discussing the future of Star Trek. “That’d be perfect. Then I could direct a bunch of the episodes and be around the show.”
Jonathan Frakes’ vision for Riker is intrinsically tied to his role as a director in the Star Trek franchise. Having directed numerous episodes of Picard, Discovery, and the more recent Strange New Worlds, he sees Riker as a supporting character who entrusts the franchise’s legacy to newer personas rather than taking center stage.
Jonathan Frakes wants Riker to be like Charlie from Charlie’s Angels, give out the mission, and then he can return to directing.
I suspect if it does go forward,” Jonathan Frakes mused, “it would be Jeri Ryan, Michelle Hurd, and Ed Speleers,” the actor said, adding Mica Burton and Ashlei Sharpe Chestnut to the list. He also suggested that Lulu Wilson, who played Riker’s daughter Kestra Troi-Riker in Season 1 of Star Trek: Picard, could be a part of Starfleet in the hypothesized new series.
“It feels to me like there’s a real opportunity for three of the legacy characters’ children to carry on and sort of be the next Star Trek: The Next Generation,” Jonathan Frakes continued, calling his idea the “blueprint” for following chapters.
While fans are eager to see what direction Paramount will take with the beloved franchise, Jonathan Frakes’ insight offers a compelling suggestion on how the show can evolve while honoring its rich history. Continuing with the children of The Next Generation would provide a sense of continuity and a deep appreciation for the characters that have defined Star Trek for decades. While the future of Riker and the Star Trek universe remains uncertain, one thing is clear: the legacy of The Next Generation will continue to shape the future of the final frontier.