Star Trek's Jonathan Frakes Shares Some Honest Thoughts On Lower Decks And How It Handled Riker

When it comes to Star Trek, there’s always been one actor the franchise can trust to share his honest opinion -- Jonathan Frakes. He previously starred and currently works as both as an actor and director on several shows within the franchise. Plus, his role as a cast member on Star Trek: The Next Generation only helps his reputation with fans as a trusted source of the state of Trek. Essentially, when Frakes talks, fans listen, so they’ll definitely be interested to hear about his honest thoughts on Star Trek: Lower Decks and how it’s handled Riker. 

For those not watching, Lower Decks Season 2 briefly featured Bradward Boimler on the USS Titan, a ship captained in that era by William T. Riker. The episodes featured a bold, daring, and perhaps a bit reckless Riker in control of the ship, while Boimler struggled to keep up with the ship’s insane escapades week-to-week. I asked Jonathan Frakes how he felt about his character’s stories in new Trek shows (including his reprisal in Picard Season 1), and after a brief general response, Frakes shared his love for the animated series:

I love it. I just did a commentary with Mike McMahon and Jack Quaid, whose Boimler serves on Riker’s Titan on Lower Decks. I think Lower Decks is spectacular. I know that some Trekkers have had trouble adjusting to an animated, kind of an adult new [show]. I think it’s smart, it’s funny as hell, and filled with these easter eggs of love for all things Star Trek.

As the actor says, not all fans love Lower Decks, yet it's nice to see that the the Paramount+ series gets a big thumbs up from Jonathan Frakes. He, and others, are obviously fans of the work Mike McMahon and others put in with including references and the ways they’re able to make light of a franchise that took itself very seriously for decades before allowing a series like this to happen. 

Jonathan Frakes’ involvement in Star Trek: Lower Decks should be enough to show he’s a fan but, in fairness, he’s been in a lot of Trek projects in various capacities over the years. Frakes acknowledged the luck he’s had with being continually welcomed back in the fold:

I’m very fortunate to have been part of a couple of generations of Star Treks. I also like to say yes.

It’s safe to say fans are fine with his continued involvement, which happened as recently with his involvement in the current season of Star Trek: Discovery. He is also slated to appear in Season 2 of Picard and teased to CinemaBlend he’s got a scene with John de Lancie’s Q on the horizon. Hopefully, we’ll also see more of Riker in Lower Decks and more of the character's wilder days on the Titan

Star Trek fans can see all of Jonathan Frakes’ latest contributions to the franchise with a Paramount+ subscription. It’s well worth the value for those looking to keep up with the new shows, as well as a place to find all the classic series as well.

Mick Joest
Content Producer

Mick Joest is a Content Producer for CinemaBlend with his hand in an eclectic mix of television goodness. Star Trek is his main jam, but he also regularly reports on happenings in the world of Star Trek, WWE, Doctor Who, 90 Day Fiancé, Quantum Leap, and Big Brother. He graduated from the University of Southern Indiana with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Radio and Television. He's great at hosting panels and appearing on podcasts if given the chance as well.