It’s been two decades since Endgame — the series finale of Star Trek: Voyager — hit the airwaves and finally saw Kate Mulgrew’s Captain Kathryn Janeway and her crew defeat the Borg and find their way back home to Earth. Now Mulgrew is back in the world of Star Trek, and she’s celebrating with a photo of her return to the captain’s chair.
Yesterday, Kate Mulgrew tweeted a picture of herself in the captain’s chair, but not the chair from Voyager. The photo is from this past weekend’s New York Comic Con (NYCC), where Mulgrew attended a panel about the upcoming animated series Star Trek: Prodigy. The new captain’s chair she’s sitting in is from the con’s lifelike recreation of the bridge of the Protostar — the ship from Prodigy. You can see the image below, followed by a reminder of what it looked like when she was giving orders on Voyager.
Kate Mulgrew will reprise the role of Captain Janeway for Star Trek: Prodigy, but with a twist. The heroes of Prodigy are a group of teen aliens in the Delta Quadrant, the same part of the galaxy Janeway and her crew are trapped in during Voyager. The alien teens are exiled on a mining colony when they discover the seemingly abandoned Starfleet ship, the Protostar. The Janeway who aids them on their journey is a hologram programmed to help the Protostar return to Federation space. At the NYCC Prodigy panel (via ComicBook.com), fans got to see an extended clip of Janeway’s hologram interacting with the teen heroes. You can watch the clip below.
Some new names of cast members were also revealed at the panel. Jason Alexander of Seinfeld fame — who previously joined the Trek universe as Kurros in the Voyager Season 5 episode Think Tank — Daveed Diggs (Hamilton), and Jameela Jamil (The Good Place) will join Kate Mulgrew in the voice cast of Prodigy.
Perhaps the most surprising Prodigy casting announcement to come out of NYCC is that Robert Beltran will reprise the role of Chakotay. Once Kate Mulgrew’s second-in-command on Voyager, now Chakotay will be a captain. While there had already been rumors about the casting, its confirmation is nonetheless surprising considering how often Beltran has publicly criticized Star Trek, including while Voyager was still on the air. By 2000, he’d slung enough mud that producer Kenneth Biller told SFX Magazine (Via Trek Today) that Beltran should “stop whining and do his job.” Along with speaking openly about how unhappy he was creatively on Voyager, in 2016 Beltran called Starfleet’s sacred Prime Directive “a bunch of fascist crap.”
As far as why Kate Mulgrew opted to return to the world of Star Trek, according to an interview from March with CBR, a lot of it has to do with Prodigy‘s target audience. Mulgrew said at first she was a little confused when she was told it was an animated series. But once the entire concept was explained to her, she was intrigued, and the biggest selling point was the chance to introduce younger viewers “who may be watching this with their mothers who watched me as Captain Janeway in live-action and it will bring the entire family into the orbit of Star Trek.”
Star Trek: Prodigy premieres on Thursday, October 28, on Paramount+