Star Trek Sneakily Sets Up Section 31 Reveal

By Michileen Martin | Updated

star trek genesis
Star Trek: Picard Season 3 reveals a Genesis device being kept at Daystrom Station by Section 31

Last week, I wrote an op-ed arguing that the reveal of a Genesis device on a Ferengi ship in Star Trek: Lower Decks made no sense because of a similar device revealed in Season 3 of Star Trek: Picard. Well, this week’s Lower Decks episode “A Few Badgeys More,” ends with a discovery that could mean the Genesis Device we see in the Ferengi ship is the very same one Will Riker spots in the final season of Picard.

A Genesis Device seen in Star Trek: Lower Decks could be the very same one seen in the final season of Star Trek: Picard.

To recap: in Season 3 of Star Trek: Picard–set roughly two decades after the events of Lower Decks–Will Riker, Worf, and Raffi Musiker infiltrate Section 31’s secret Daystrom Station and, among other things, find the group is secretly storing a Genesis Device. This is the same Genesis Device that Khan activated, almost destroying the Enterprise, in 1982’s Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

All this season of Paramount+‘s Lower Decks, a relatively small ship has been seemingly destroying vessels from different Trek races. The most recent episode added the relatively obscure Bynar (first seen in TNG‘s “11001001”) to the list of victims.

Given all the evidence we have so far, the most likely culprit for the attacks in Lower Decks Season 4 is the covert organization Section 31.

However, in “A Few Badgeys More” the sentient computer villain AGIMUS (voiced by the great Jeffrey Combs) reveals that the mysterious ship has not been destroying the vessels, but transporting them somewhere. This means that the Romulan, Ferengi, Klingon, Orion, and now Bynar crew are potentially still alive.

star trek lower decks
Boimler and Tendi learn the truth about the attacks in Star Trek: Lower Decks

How does this relate to Star Trek: Picard‘s Genesis Device that was in Section 31’s possession?

Given all the evidence we have so far, the most likely culprit for the attacks in Lower Decks Season 4 is the covert organization Section 31.

Season 3 of Lower Decks included some big teases about future Section 31 activity on the show, including the season finale ending with William Boimler (Brad Boimler’s transporter double) getting recruited by the spies.

Since Section 31 has yet to be mentioned at all in Season 4, either the ship in question is related to the secret organization, or the Lower Decks writers decided to forget that particular story thread for the time being.

So, in other words — if the mysterious ship is indeed of Section 31 origin — the Star Trek: Picard Season 3 Genesis Device Riker spots in the Daystrom Station could actually be the same one the Lower Decks Ferengi find in their cargo bay moments before their ship is attacked. After all, if Section 31 were to capture a vessel carrying a Genesis Device, the potential terraformer/weapon of mass destruction would be high on their list of things to confiscate.

star trek genesis
The Ferengi find a Genesis Device in the Star Trek: Lower Decks episode “Parth Ferengi’s Heart Place”

Why Would Section 31 Want Genesis?

The Genesis Device is exactly the kind of thing Section 31 would want their hands on. Assuming the use of Genesis within the Federation is still considered a big no-no, it wouldn’t be the kind of thing Starfleet would openly store, but would be valuable to Section 31 if kept secret.

On one hand, it would give Section 31 the ability to instantly terraform a planet and perhaps use it as a covert base of operations (assuming newer versions of the Genesis Device don’t cause the new planets to destroy themselves in a matter of days like the original). On the other, it would give the organization the ability to completely wipe out a planet’s population should they deem such an atrocity necessary.

As we know from the final season of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, in which it’s revealed Section 31 infected the Changelings with a virus in the hopes of wiping out the entire species, the group is not at all squeamish about using such extreme measures.

If it is Section 31 transporting all of these ships to no one knows where and making it look like they’ve been destroyed, then why have they been doing it? We’ll have to keep watching Lower Decks to find out.

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