Even though Star Trek: Discovery had some growing pains, it helped pave the way for other franchise entries that have been more universally beloved, including the animated show Lower Decks. This cartoon love letter to all things Trek just keeps getting better by the season, and it looks like that won’t be changing anytime soon. The trailer for this Paramount show’s fourth season premiered at San Diego Comic-Con, and it provides some fun glimpses of what to expect from a season that promises to change the status quo for our heroes.
Changing up that status quo is important because one of the few annoying things about Star Trek: Lower Decks is that our main characters can’t really grow their Starfleet careers.
There’s a blink-and-you-miss-it moment where Commander Ransom and Lieutenant Shaxs are exercising in tight-fitting outfits in front of a mirror, recreating a much-memed moment from Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Every main character is an ensign in the titular lower decks of the USS Cerritos who gets stuck doing menial work while the bridge crew does cool stuff. But in this trailer, Commander Ransom teases the possibility of a promotion for Starfleet go-getter Boimler, which means the young Federation fanboy might get a promotion (one that doesn’t effectively get stolen by a transported clone this time).
Another big change is that our usual quartet of Star Trek: Lower Decks ensigns will have a fifth wheel for their future adventures.
Back in season 2, we were introduced to T’Lyn, a Vulcan who experiences emotional outbursts that her fellow Vulcans frown upon. She was ultimately transferred to Starfleet, and given her outsize presence in the season 4 trailer, it looks like she has been assigned to work with Boimler, Mariner, and the rest of our faves on the USS Cerritos.
In this trailer, Commander Ransom teases the possibility of a promotion to Starfleet go-getter Boimler
A New Threat
And while Star Trek: Lower Decks is renowned for its one-off comedic episodes, this trailer hints that the season will have its own ongoing Big Bad in the form of a mysterious new alien threat. Previously, this threat has been attacking various other races and empires, but it now has its heart set on Starfleet.
It will be interesting to see if this is genuinely a new threat or if the show is giving a glow up to a largely-forgotten Trek race (like earlier seasons did with the dumb-but-dangerous Pakleds).
We hope the threat ends up paying off, but even if it didn’t, the trailer proves we can look forward to more of what Star Trek: Lower Decks does best, and that’s gently dunking on the sillier parts of the franchise we’ve come to know and love.
For example, there’s a blink-and-you-miss-it moment where Commander Ransom and Lieutenant Shaxs are exercising in tight-fitting outfits in front of a mirror, recreating a much-memed moment from Star Trek: The Next Generation. The trailer also ends with a hilarious homage to “Move Along Home,” a Deep Space Nine episode considered by many to be the worst in Star Trek history.
These are just a few of the things we loved about the Star Trek: Lower Decks season 4 trailer, and the cheeky reference to the Strange New Worlds crossover was just icing on the cake. At this point, our hype is so solid that Miles O’Brien could use it in place of a self-sealing stembolt. And we’ll find out whether the season lives up to the hype when it premieres on Paramount Plus on September 7.