(covers information from several alternate timelines)
Jean-Luc Picard was a celebrated Starfleet officer, archaeologist and diplomat who served throughout much of the 24th century. The highlights of his career were centered around assignments as commanding officer of the Federation starships USS Stargazer, USS Enterprise-D, and the USS Enterprise-E. In these roles, Picard not only witnessed major turning points of recent galactic history, but played a key role in them also, from making first contact as captain of the Federation's flagship with no fewer than 27 alien species, including the Ferengi and the Borg.
He also became the chief contact point with the Q Continuum, and served as Arbiter of Succession of the Klingon Empire, where he presided over the investiture of Chancellor Gowron. Picard would expose the Romulan Star Empire as backers of Gowron's chief rivals, later aiding a Romulan underground movement of dissidents to gain a toehold on the Romulan homeworld. He continued to serve as captain of the Enterprise-E, the sixth Federation starship to bear the name, until at least 2379. (TNG: "The Battle", "The Last Outpost", "Q Who", "Encounter at Farpoint", "All Good Things...", "Redemption", "Redemption II", "Unification II"; Star Trek: First Contact; Star Trek Nemesis)
- Serial number: SP 937-215
- Active rank: Captain
- Most recent assignment: Commanding officer of the USS Enterprise-E, (2372–)
- Previous assignments:
Jean-Luc Picard was born in La Barre, France on Earth to Maurice and Yvette Picard on July 13, 2305. (TNG: "Family", "Conundrum") He and his elder brother, Robert, spent their childhood tending to their family vineyards with their father. Concerned about the preservation of their familial values, Maurice and his wife educated their sons in the ancient traditions, avoiding, in particular, any superfluous technologies. (TNG: "Family") As a young boy, Jean-Luc watched his grandfather "deteriorate from a powerful, intelligent figure to a frail wisp of a man, who could barely make his own way home." (TNG: "Night Terrors")
As a child, Jean-Luc took piano lessons but eventually gave it up because he dreaded performing in front of an audience. In his later life, he would regret doing so because his playing used to please his mother. (TNG: "Lessons", "The Perfect Mate")
Young Jean-Luc dreamed of adventure and exploration. He was fond of starships, of which he liked to build models. (TNG: "Booby Trap") Moreover, he was captivated by the Phoenix, the first Human warp-capable starship, which he admired several times at the Smithsonian Institution, but was never able to touch. (Star Trek: First Contact) Like his nephew René, Jean-Luc wrote a ribbon-winning report on starships. (TNG: "Family")
Although Maurice intended his sons to work at the vineyards, it became obvious very early that Jean-Luc knew he wanted to join Starfleet, something that his father would never condone, up until his death. (TNG: "Bloodlines") Jean-Luc would later remember that he devoted his childhood to that end, which was like skipping that age altogether. (TNG: "Suddenly Human") His brother would later note that Jean-Luc always sought higher standards, such as becoming president of his school and later a valedictorian and even an athletic champion. Robert was also jealous seeing Picard being the favored son and getting away after his mischiefs. Sometimes Robert had to bully his younger brother. (TNG: "Family")
Jean-Luc caused "quite a stir" by leaving his family's generational vineyard and applying to Starfleet Academy. (TNG: "Family"; Star Trek Nemesis) Although he failed to gain entry on his first attempt, Picard succeeded in his second attempt in 2323. He subsequently became one of the most outstanding cadets in his class. (TNG: "Coming of Age", "The First Duty")
Picard's career at the Academy was difficult, at best – years later, Picard credited Academy groundskeeper Boothby with helping him develop a mature attitude. (TNG: "The First Duty"; VOY: "In the Flesh") Among Picard's friends at the Academy were Donald Varley, Cortan Zweller, Marta Batanides, and an acquaintance called "A.F.", whom he blamed for his failed semester of Organic Chemistry and whose initials Picard carved into Boothby's prized elm. (TNG: "Contagion", "The Game", "Tapestry")
At the Academy, Picard developed an interest in archaeology. His professor, Richard Galen, encouraged him to continue in this field, but Picard ultimately refused his offer of becoming an archaeologist. He would nevertheless keep his interest in the subject, and became to be considered quite knowledgeable in the field. (TNG: "The Chase", "Qpid") It was also during this time he took great interest in studying the Iconians. (TNG: "Contagion")
Picard also excelled in sports. He won the Starfleet Academy marathon in April 2323 on Danula II, becoming the first freshman to win the race. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds, Part II"; Picard family album) During a wrestling match, Picard caught a Ligonian with a reverse body lift and pinned him down in the first fourteen seconds. (TNG: "The First Duty")
Early Starfleet career
Shortly upon graduation in 2327, Ensign Picard's promising career nearly ended abruptly during a layover at Starbase Earhart. During a bar brawl over a rigged game of dom-jot, he was stabbed through the heart by a Nausicaan, and had to undergo emergency surgery to replace his heart. He later related to Wesley Crusher that he laughed after looking down to see the knife protruding from his chest. This event helped him realize how fragile life could be, and thus made him more willing to take risks and make his mark in the universe, which he only realized when Q proposed him to change this event in 2369. (TNG: "Samaritan Snare", "Tapestry")
As an ensign, Picard was posted to the USS Reliant, where he served with Lieutenant Nakamura. (TNG-R: "The Measure Of A Man") Also while as an ensign, Picard was capable of detecting by ear variations in a ship's torque sensors, as such, he was capable of hearing a three micron misalignment. (Star Trek: Insurrection)
Picard demonstrated command abilities early in his career, in particular, when he led an away team on Milika III to save an ambassador. This incident would later be mentioned by Q as one of the crucial events forming Picard's personality. (TNG: "Tapestry")
Aboard the Stargazer
Picard was assigned as a flight controller aboard the USS Stargazer. In 2333, as a lieutenant commander, he assumed command of the vessel when the captain was killed on the bridge. (TNG: "The Battle", "Relics", "Bloodlines") Starfleet awarded Picard a promotion to the post of captain, making him one of the youngest Starfleet officers ever to attain the position. (TNG: "Tapestry") Picard remained in command of the Stargazer for twenty-two years. (TNG: "The Battle")
In 2342, Picard dated a young woman named Jenice at the Café des Artistes in Paris. However, he became afraid of a possible future relationship and stood up Jenice, who later married Paul Manheim. (TNG: "We'll Always Have Paris")
During the Cardassian wars, the Stargazer was involved in a truce offering by the Federation. After making contact with a Cardassian warship, Picard lowered the ship's shields as a gesture of good will, but the Cardassian commander ignored the gesture and disabled the Stargazer's weapons and impulse engines. The Stargazer managed to regroup and flee. (TNG: "The Wounded")
In 2353, Picard was on an away mission when he saved the life of one team member at the expense of another; Jack Crusher was lost in the line of duty. Picard met with Crusher's widow, Beverly, on Starbase 32 to present the body; it was one of Wesley Crusher's earliest memories. (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint", "Coming of Age", "The Bonding", "Violations")
In 2355, the Stargazer was seriously damaged in a battle with an unknown enemy vessel, later discovered to be a Ferengi ship. Picard managed to destroy the enemy vessel using the Stargazer's warp engines in a unique tactical maneuver (later named the "Picard Maneuver"), but was forced to abandon the Stargazer. His actions during the battle were called into question by Starfleet prosecutor Phillipa Louvois, but he was exonerated by the inquiry board and was later awarded the Grankite Order of Tactics (Class of Excellence) for the development of the Picard Maneuver. The encounter with the Ferengi vessel, later known as the Battle of Maxia, eventually came back to haunt Picard. DaiMon Bok, whose son was killed in the battle, twice tried to exact revenge on Picard. (TNG: "The Battle", "The Measure Of A Man", "Bloodlines"; Picard family album from Star Trek Generations)
Commanding the USS Enterprise-D
In 2364, Picard was assigned command of the newly commissioned Galaxy-class starship USS Enterprise-D, the most prestigious captaincy in Starfleet. He commanded the flagship for seven years, participating in many important missions. Among these were the defeat of the Borg invasions of 2366 and 2369, and his command of the fleet which blockaded the Klingon-Romulan border during the Klingon Civil War.
Picard hand-picked most of his senior staff, such as two young officers who impressed him enough upon first meeting. Geordi La Forge once piloted Picard's inspection tour shuttle and stayed up all night to refit an engine part Picard had made a passing comment on, and Picard witnessed Natasha Yar risk her life to save colonists amid a Carnelian minefield. He had also picked William T. Riker as his first officer and promoted him to commander sight unseen, impressed by the young officer's record of independence. (TNG: "The Next Phase", "Legacy", "The Pegasus")
Mere months after taking command, Picard was offered a promotion to commandant of Starfleet Academy with the rank of admiral by Admiral Gregory Quinn, but turned it down to retain command of the Enterprise. (TNG: "Coming of Age")
Although Picard often heatedly defended a strict interpretation of the Prime Directive, he broke it numerous times when he felt it was warranted. Thus, in 2364, he allowed an Edo woman to confront her "god" from space, and in 2366, Picard brought a Mintakan leader aboard the Enterprise so as to undo the damage done by cultural contamination. (TNG: "Justice", "Who Watches The Watchers", "The Drumhead") Furthermore, in 2370, the Enterprise, by hand of Dr. Nikolai Rozhenko, transported a primitive group of Boraalans aboard from Boraal II before an atmospheric dissipation rendered it uninhabitable. Although in violation of the Prime Directive, Picard ordered that the Boraalans be resettled. (TNG: "Homeward")
In 2369, when the Enterprise was undergoing a baryon sweep at the Remmler Array, Picard uncovered a plan, by mercenaries, to steal toxic waste from the ship's warp core. He managed to take out all of the intruders by setting traps throughout the various sections of the ship. He even used the Vulcan nerve pinch technique on one of them. (TNG: "Starship Mine")
Encounters with the Q entity
Commanding the Enterprise on her first mission, Picard made first contact with a member of the Q Continuum – Q. Picard and his senior officers had to stand trial for Humanity's immaturity. To prove their worthiness as a species, Picard had to solve the "mystery of Farpoint Station." The crew of the Enterprise discovered that the inhabitants of Deneb IV, the Bandi, had captured a space-dwelling being to serve their own purpose. The Enterprise helped to free the creature, and Q, somewhat disappointed by the crew's success, retreated, though he hinted that it would not be their final encounter. (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint")
Thus, later that year, Q created a bizarre and deadly "game" for the crew of the Enterprise in order to demonstrate that he had given Riker Q-like abilities. Ultimately, Riker rejected these new powers, and Q again disappeared. (TNG: "Hide and Q") One year later, in 2365, Q first expressed an interest in joining Picard's crew. When Picard declined, Q tried to show how much he could be of assistance by hurling the Enterprise into the path of a Borg cube. Q was hoping to show that the Federation was entirely unprepared to meet some of the more powerful races that existed in the universe. Ultimately, Picard had to beg for Q's help in escaping from the pursuit of the Borg vessel. (TNG: "Q Who")
A fourth encounter with Q occurred in 2366, when the other members of the Continuum had stripped him of his omnipotence and immortality as punishment for his irresponsibility. He sought refuge on the Enterprise and, although Picard and the rest of the crew were initially unconvinced of the sincerity of Q's pleas, the captain agreed to provide Q temporary asylum. As the Enterprise began to suffer from Calamarain attack, however, Q resolved to end his life in order to prevent further risk to the Enterprise crew, but another member of the Q Continuum prevented Q from sacrificing himself, and restored his powers as a reward for his selfless act. (TNG: "Deja Q")
Late in 2367, Q returned to the Enterprise to "properly" thank Picard for his role in helping him regain his standing in the Continuum. At the time, Picard was meeting Vash, whom he had met on Risa the year before. Q resolved to teach Picard a lesson about love and cast the captain, Vash, and the Enterprise command crew into an elaborate scenario styled by the ancient legend of Robin Hood. Q himself assumed the role of the High Sheriff of Nottingham. Ultimately, Picard learned his lesson, and everyone was returned to the Enterprise. Intrigued by Vash, though, Q offered to take her on a journey of exploration to explore various archaeological ruins of the galaxy, and she accepted. (TNG: "Qpid")
In 2369, Q once again appeared aboard the Enterprise, this time to instruct Amanda Rogers, a Human who was the child of two Q and possessed Q powers herself. Although Q's petulant and acerbic attitude did little to ingratiate himself to Amanda, he eventually convinced her to go with him to the Continuum to learn to use her new-found abilities. (TNG: "True Q")
Later that same year, Q appeared to Picard when the latter was critically injured during an ambush from a group of Lenarians. Appearing as "God", Q told Picard that he had died because of his artificial heart, and offered him the chance to return to the incident in his youth, allowing him to relive the events leading up to his near-fatal injury and change history. Although Picard was successful in changing history, he eventually realized that the event – and his previous nature as an arrogant, brash young man – was a part of his identity, and had helped mold him into the successful Starfleet officer he had become. Although he was uncertain as to whether the experience had been real or simply a vision, Picard was grateful for Q's revelation. (TNG: "Tapestry")
In 2370, Q returned to the Enterprise to continue the trial against Humanity. Claiming that the seven-year-old trial had never actually ended, Q proclaimed Humanity guilty of "being inferior" and informed Picard that his race was to be destroyed. He sent Picard traveling through time to his past, present, and future, where he was presented with a temporal paradox in the form of an eruption of anti-time in the Devron system. In this paradox, Picard himself was responsible for the creation of the anomaly that propagated backwards in normal time (anti-time having the opposite properties of normal time), thus destroying Humanity in the past.
However, in addition to sending Picard jumping through time, Q also provided Picard with hints to understanding the nature of the paradox. Ultimately, Picard determined the solution and devised a way to close the anti-time anomaly in all three time periods. Following the captain's success, Q revealed that the entire experience had been a test, aimed at determining whether Humanity was capable of expanding its horizons to understand some of the advanced concepts of the universe. Departing, Q promised to continue watching Humanity, proclaiming that "The trial never ends." (TNG: "All Good Things...")
Encounters with the Borg
In 2365, Q sent the Enterprise 7,000 light years into uncharted space, into the path of a Borg cube. Although the Enterprise suffered losses, it became the first ship known by the Federation to survive an encounter with the Borg and so managed to inform Starfleet of the Borg's existence. (TNG: "Q Who")
One year later, in 2366, the Borg launched their first invasion of the Federation. A single cube destroyed the New Providence colony and the USS Lalo, and kidnapped Picard when the Enterprise attempted to intervene. Picard was partially assimilated and became a Borg drone known as Locutus of Borg. The cube proceeded towards Earth and engaged Starfleet in the Battle of Wolf 359, resulting in the destruction of 39 Federation vessels. On arrival at Earth, an away team from the Enterprise successfully rescued Picard and used his connection to the Borg to implant false data in the cube, destroying it. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "The Best of Both Worlds, Part II") It was revealed years later that his assimilation and time spent in the Collective had a profoundly disturbing effect on Picard's life. (Star Trek: First Contact)
The Enterprise again encountered the Borg in 2368 when they rescued a Borg drone from a crashed Borg shuttle. This drone was cut off from the Collective and slowly regained an individual identity, eventually being named Hugh. Initially, the plan was drafted to use Hugh to destroy the collective in its entirety, although Dr. Beverly Crusher resisted the extermination of an entire race – even if it was the Borg. Picard eventually confronted Hugh, who immediately recognized Picard as Locutus. Picard took the role of Locutus while talking to Hugh, to simulate the authority that Hugh was used to. However, Geordi La Forge, Data, Dr. Crusher, and other members of the Enterprise crew had a profound effect on the former drone. Even Guinan, who initially wanted nothing to do with Hugh, taught him that resistance is not futile. Guinan's homeworld had been destroyed long ago by the Borg, but the fact that Guinan was still alive was proof of this assertion.
When Picard reminded Hugh that "resistance is futile," Hugh informed him that it was not so. When Picard told Hugh that La Forge would be assimilated, Hugh stated that La Forge did not want to be assimilated. When Picard said that this was irrelevant, Hugh specifically said that he (and Hugh used the word "I") would not assist in the assimilation of La Forge. Picard was stunned that a Borg drone would say such things. He decided that he could not send Hugh back with the file that would destroy the Borg. Picard offered Hugh asylum on board the Enterprise, but Hugh said that the Collective would not stop looking for him until they found him. Hugh agreed to go back to the crash site and to be taken back into the Collective, to protect the Enterprise from harm. (TNG: "I Borg")
The individuality present in Hugh spread through the ship he returned to, causing a catastrophic separation of the ship from the rest of the Collective. This rogue mini-collective was unsure how to cope with its freedom, and so fell under the influence of the android Lore. Lore persuaded them to aid his plan to conquer Earth. Using the rogue ship, they attacked several outposts before being tracked down by the crew of the Enterprise-D. They destroyed the Borg ship and were able to persuade the remaining members of the mini-collective of Lore's unreliability. The mini-collective then disappeared into space and has not been encountered since. (TNG: "Descent", "Descent, Part II")
There were some within Starfleet who blamed Picard for the destruction of the task force at Wolf 359. Benjamin Sisko, who was serving as first officer of the USS Saratoga at the time, lost his wife Jennifer in the attack. Picard and Sisko finally met in 2369, after the Enterprise was the first Starfleet vessel to arrive at Deep Space 9. Sisko was, at first, hostile toward Picard, but later came to forgive him. Sisko also gave Picard his letter of resignation, which Picard did not send, feeling Sisko was the right person for command of Deep Space 9. (DS9: "Emissary")
In 2373, the Borg launched their second invasion of the Federation, and again the crew of the Enterprise played a major role in their defeat. Initially, the Enterprise was not to have participated in the Battle of Sector 001, because according to Starfleet Command, Picard would bring an "unstable element into a critical situation." Seeing that the Borg were getting the best of the fleet, Picard ordered the Enterprise to Earth to assist. He was instrumental in defeating both the main invasion and an attempt by the Borg to prevent the formation of the Federation by altering history. (Star Trek: First Contact)
Kamin and the Ressikan Probe
In 2368, the Enterprise encountered a space probe of unknown origin, which emitted a nucleonic beam directly at Picard. This led to his fainting and awakening on an unknown world where he was known as an ironworker named Kamin and was married to Eline. Picard later found out that Kamin was a member of the Ressik community on a planet called Kataan. For five years, Picard clung to his life aboard the Enterprise and searched for ways to return, but eventually settled into his life as Kamin, having two children with Eline and eventually a grandchild. In the approximately 35 years Picard spent as Kamin, he learned to play the Ressikan flute, dabbled in astronomy, and analyzed soil samples from the planet, eventually confirming that Kataan was a dying world.
Near the end of his life on Kataan, it was revealed to Picard that Kataan had been destroyed more than 1,000 years previously, and the residents of the Ressik community had engineered the probe to share the memory and experiences of their people with someone who could then teach others about their civilization. He awoke on the Enterprise as Jean-Luc Picard once more and discovered that he had lived a lifetime in only 25 minutes. The probe was collected by the Enterprise and disassembled. A Ressikan flute was found inside the probe, which Riker then presented to Picard. (TNG: "The Inner Light")
Loss of the Enterprise-D
In 2371, the USS Enterprise-D was lost over Veridian III, with the vessel's primary hull crash-landing on the planet's surface. Picard also met the legendary James T. Kirk while in the Nexus with him, and recruited him in defeating and killing Dr. Tolian Soran before he could have the chance to destroy the Veridian system. The casualties were light aboard the Enterprise, and most of the ship's senior crew was reassigned to the USS Enterprise-E, the sixth Federation starship to bear the name. (Star Trek Generations, Star Trek: First Contact)
Commanding the USS Enterprise-E
Stopping the Borg
Picard was installed as commanding officer and given a new authorization code: "Picard-4-7-alpha-tango." After a one-year shakedown cruise, the new Enterprise was nearly lost when the senior staff decided to sacrifice the ship in order to save Earth's future by preventing the Borg on board from changing history. Fortunately, the crew was able to repel the Borg attempt without having to destroy the Enterprise. (Star Trek: First Contact)
The Ba'ku and the Son'a
Two years later, in 2375, Picard ordered the Enterprise-E to the Ba'ku planet in the Briar Patch when it appeared that his operations officer, Lieutenant Commander Data, had malfunctioned and assaulted members of the research team there. Picard was able to capture Data and uncovered a plot by Admiral Matthew Dougherty, the Son'a and some in the Federation Council to relocate the Ba'ku against their will. Picard rebelled against Dougherty, bringing word of his actions to the public. Picard was able to protect the Ba'ku and stop Son'a leader Ru'afo from destroying the Ba'ku's homeworld. (Star Trek: Insurrection)
Dealing with the Romulans
Picard continued in command of the Enterprise through 2379, when the ship was sent to Romulus after the coup by Praetor Shinzon. Shinzon was a clone of Picard created by a former Romulan government – they intended to replace the captain with a spy of their own. Following a change of government and concern that it would lead to war, the plan was abandoned and Shinzon was sent to Remus to die. Instead, he prospered, becoming a highly successful leader during the Dominion War. Shinzon used a thalaron radiation weapon to eradicate the Romulan Senate and had planned to do the same to Earth. He needed Picard in order to repair faults in his own genetic makeup.
In a pitched battle between the Enterprise and Shinzon's flagship, the Scimitar, Picard was eventually able to board the enemy ship and eliminate Shinzon. Data saved Picard's life by transporting the captain back to the Enterprise before sacrificing his own life; he destroyed the Scimitar by firing on the thalaron weapon with a hand phaser, thereby saving the over 800 men and women aboard the Enterprise. (Star Trek Nemesis)
Picard always remained in excellent health, thanks to a regimen carried over from his days as an athlete, and at the age of seventy-four (in 2379), was still a vibrant and healthy man. (Star Trek Nemesis)
Despite his captaincy of the Enterprise, Picard still found time for fencing, racquetball, and equine sports, usually on the holodeck. Nevertheless, he did show a tendency to overwork, avoided formal vacations, and had reported bouts of insomnia. Additionally, Picard usually tried to avoid his annual physicals, to the great irritation of Dr. Crusher. (TNG: "We'll Always Have Paris", "Pen Pals", "Suddenly Human", "Captain's Holiday", "Allegiance")
At a very young age, Picard was diagnosed with Shalaft's Syndrome, a rare congenital defect that left him hypersensitive to any kind of sound. His condition was treated, but his hearing was still highly acute. As an ensign, Picard could sense subtleties as faint as a starship's torque sensors out of alignment by three microns. (Star Trek: Insurrection; Star Trek Nemesis)
Owing to a near-fatal stabbing through the heart in 2328, an artificial heart was implanted to save Picard's life. The unit required replacement when it malfunctioned in 2365, overseen at Starbase 515 by Dr. Katherine Pulaski. Four years later, the unit was damaged and again replaced following a near-fatal Lenarian compressed tetryon weaponry attack. (TNG: "Samaritan Snare", "Tapestry")
Following his assimilation by the Borg in 2366, Picard was formally declared dead as a casualty of war by Admiral J.P. Hanson. The ruling was rescinded six days later when Picard was recaptured by the crew of the Enterprise. Along with the physical recovery, the incident took an enormous emotional toll and required several weeks of intensive counseling. Picard underwent similar, though less lengthy recuperation following his capture and torture by Cardassians in 2369. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "Chain of Command, Part I")
In an alternate future timeline, Jean-Luc developed Irumodic Syndrome, and in the corresponding alternate "present" timeline in 2370 he became aware of his future condition due to being shifted through time by Q. Asking Dr. Crusher to perform medical scans on him in regards to this apparent fate, Crusher confirmed that Picard had a small structural defect that could possibly lead to Irumodic Syndrome, among other possible disorders. (TNG: "All Good Things...")
Picard held diverse intellectual interests and recreational pursuits. He was a lifelong avocational archaeologist, inspired by his Academy instructor, Richard Galen, having studied the Iconian culture since his cadet days. Picard even addressed the Federation Archaeology Council as keynote speaker in 2367, on the subject of his oft-studied Tagus III ruins. He also had a deep love of Terran literature, from the works of William Shakespeare to detective stories featuring Dixon Hill, and preferred to read them in their written form rather than on a holo-visual display. Picard had studied semantics and kept his Latin fresh. (TNG: "The Chase", "Qpid", "Hide and Q", "Clues", "The Game") Other subjects that enthralled Picard were physics and celestial mechanics. He kept up with the Atlantis Project on Earth through journals. Picard was fascinated to be the first to reveal an ancient Promellian battle cruiser, as visiting such an elegant craft was always a dream of Picard's, a dream he had held on to ever since he was a child when he used to build model airships and starships in bottles, surmising that he likely had a Promellian battle cruiser in his collection. (TNG: "Family", "Booby Trap") After his experience with the Kataan probe, Picard began to play the Ressikan flute and was good enough to perform works by Mozart. He considered the flute to be one of his most prized possessions. It represented, to him, an entire lifetime he lived in only 25 minutes. As of 2379, Picard kept the flute on his desk in his ready room aboard the Enterprise-E. His attempts at painting were less successful. (TNG: "The Chase", "Family", "The Inner Light", "A Fistful of Datas", "A Matter of Perspective"; Star Trek Nemesis)
Despite Picard being a rather private person, he maintained a good relationship with the members of his senior staff on board the Enterprise, but only joined in their weekly game of poker after seven years. (TNG: "All Good Things...") When enjoying the comforts of home on the Enterprise, Picard drank Earl Grey tea. He delighted in fencing, horseback riding, and his scale models of various Starfleet vessels. His opponents in fencing included Lieutenant Dean and Guinan, whom Picard coached in the sport. She initially lost one of their matches and said she did not think she liked the sport. Picard replied she liked it well enough two weeks prior, when she scored him two touches. (TNG: "We'll Always Have Paris", "I Borg")
Only rarely did Picard take extended time off to relax. In 2366, several of the members of his crew persuaded him to go on holiday on Risa. While intending to just relax in the suns, reading a book, he ended up going on a treasure hunt for the Tox Uthat, an artifact from the future. (TNG: "Captain's Holiday")
Philosophically, Picard saw life and death as more than two choices of eternal or momentary existence. In fact, he believed there was another concept yet beyond Human understanding due to the marvelous complexity and the clockwork precision of the universe. In 2364, confronted by Q, Picard quoted from Shakespeare: "What a piece of work is man? How noble in reason? How infinite in faculty, in form, in moving, how express and admirable. In action, how like an angel, in apprehension, how like a god..." Upon Q's interruption that surely he did not see his own species like that, Picard answered that he saw Humankind one day becoming so. In Picard's opinion, genetic engineering with its predetermination robbed Humanity of the unknown factor that makes life worth living. (TNG: "Lonely Among Us", "Hide and Q", "The Masterpiece Society")
Picard claimed that he was able to trace his family's roots in western Europe back to the time of Charlemagne in the 8th century. He had "never been a family man," and was thus long uncomfortable with the presence of children aboard the Galaxy-class Enterprise. The orphaned son of Lieutenant Marla Aster again raised his concern about the vessel's civilian family contingent, although his unease with children had lessened since being stranded with three youths during a shipboard quantum filament crisis. His time on Kataan also affected his views concerning family and children, as he admitted not being able to imagine a life without them. His initial reaction to family was also reflected in the friction with his father, and later his older brother, over leaving the family business. Upon the sudden accidental deaths of his brother Robert and his nephew René, the issue of lineage and Picard's lack of offspring caused a sustained yet brief period of depression. (TNG: "Journey's End", "The Bonding", "Disaster", "The Inner Light", "Family"; Star Trek Generations)
In 2370, DaiMon Bok threatened Jason Vigo, claiming that Jason was Picard's son. It was soon revealed that Jason was not actually Picard's son. As a parting gift, Picard gave Jason an archaeological artifact of significant sentimental value. (TNG: "Bloodlines")
When Ambassador Lwaxana Troi visited the USS Enterprise-D in 2365, she had just entered her Betazoid phase, and so she set her sights on several male crewmembers as potential mates, including Picard. She announced her "wedding" with William Riker on the bridge of the Enterprise shortly before moving on to Picard. Following an intimate dinner with the ambassador, Picard hid himself on the holodeck in a Dixon Hill holonovel. Lwaxana continued to teasingly flirt with Picard during her future visits to the Enterprise. On one occasion, Picard pretended to be in love with Lwaxana in order to save the ambassador's daughter, Deanna Troi, and Riker from Ferengi captivity. Lwaxana was most impressed with his Shakespearian poetry. (TNG: "Manhunt", "Ménage à Troi")
Picard had a relationship with an "adventurer" and some-time criminal named Vash. They initially met when Picard aided her attempts to find a rare artifact. Over the course of their adventure, the two developed an intimate relationship. Vash later returned to the Enterprise as part of an archaeological advisory team and was upset to find that Picard had not told his friends about their relationship. At the same time, Q appeared on the ship, and in return for Picard's aid in getting back to the Q Continuum, he created a Robin Hood fantasy world in which Picard (Robin) had to save Vash (Maid Marian). Eventually, Vash and Picard parted on good terms, as she decided to travel the universe with Q. She later reappeared one last time on Deep Space 9 after being unceremoniously abandoned by her "partner" Q.
In 2368, while mediating negotiations between the warring planets Krios and Valt Minor, Picard encountered Kamala, an empathic metamorph intended as a gift for Valtese Chancellor Alrik. Due to premature emergence from stasis, Kamala underwent her bonding phase before the marriage could be completed. When circumstances placed Picard and Kamala in close proximity to each other, she eventually bonded with the captain. However, having adapted to be perfectly compatible with Picard, Kamala found that her sense of duty demanded that she proceed with the marriage rather than pursue a relationship with Picard. Picard was deeply affected by Kamala, as shown by his reaction to Ambassador Briam's inquiry about the experience.
In 2369, Lieutenant Commander Nella Daren came aboard the Enterprise to become head of the ship's Stellar Sciences department. In her new role, she was very forthright in her requests for ship resources to support her department's studies. Soon after coming aboard, she and Picard met. A friendship quickly formed, based on their shared love for music. Daren accompanied the captain on a portable piano while he played the Ressikan flute. Their friendship soon blossomed into love. The crew reacted differently to Picard and Daren's romance: Deanna Troi was happy for Picard and gave her blessing; Beverly Crusher seemed jealous; and Riker felt that Daren was asking for special treatment because she was the captain's "girlfriend."
When a fire storm threatened the Bersallis III Federation outpost, Daren suggested a plan to shield the outpost against the heat while the Enterprise evacuated the colonists. Eight crewmen lost their lives, but Daren survived. Afterward, it became obvious to Picard and Daren that it would be extremely difficult to continue their relationship while serving on the same ship, thus Daren requested a transfer. As they said goodbye, they promised to keep seeing each other, but knew their relationship would never be the same. (TNG: "Lessons")
In 2375, Picard developed a short, though intimate relationship with the Ba'ku woman Anij, while protecting her planet from the combined Starfleet-Son'a threat. Anij, while over 300 years old, appeared as a woman in her late 30s. Despite their intimacy, Picard returned to the Enterprise after the planned relocation of the Ba'ku was averted. Shortly before leaving, Picard said he had 318 days of vacation time coming, and that he planned on using them. (Star Trek: Insurrection)
Beverly Crusher and Picard maintained a close friendship while serving on the Enterprise-D, usually sharing their morning meal together. Crusher usually tried to serve a new and exotic food, although both she and Picard preferred something simple. (TNG: "Attached")
Their relationship stayed platonic, for the most part. They considered one another close friends and would give each other advice when dealing with difficult decisions. While Crusher was in anguish over Odan's failing health while the symbiont was in Riker's body, Picard gave her a hug, and assured her that he would always be her friend and be willing to help her any way he could. (TNG: "The Host")
Crusher's anger over the treatment of Kamala led to Picard spending time with her, where he quickly learned that he was falling for the metamorph. Crusher did not know what to say, but reciprocated the emotional support he had offered the year prior. (TNG: "The Perfect Mate")
Picard tried to make Crusher realize that the deaths of Jo'Bril and later Reyga were not her fault and that she should not try to rush her investigation. Crusher was too upset and preoccupied to understand his words, and Picard was extremely disappointed when she broke the Prime Directive and performed an autopsy on Reyga. (TNG: "Suspicions")
Picard knew that Crusher's odd decisions after meeting Ronin were not normal and confronted her on Caldos colony. Although Crusher initially resisted his demands for an explanation, she broke free of Ronin's influence after he attacked Picard. (TNG: "Sub Rosa")
Early on, Crusher and Picard experienced several romantically close calls. Once she was under the influence of the Psi 2000 intoxication, Crusher flirted with Picard and attempted to seduce him on the bridge of the Enterprise. Later, Crusher seemed hopeful for some time alone with Picard in the Dixon Hill holodeck simulation, but Picard seemed oblivious to her and invited Data and Whalen as well, much to Crusher's dismay. Commander Dexter Remmick interrogated Crusher about Picard in mid-2364 and questioned her about her true feelings towards Picard. Crusher refused to answer, claiming that they were irrelevant to the operation of the ship. (TNG: "The Naked Now", "The Big Goodbye", "Coming of Age")
In 2366, a duplicate of Picard replaced the captain in order to learn about Human relationships. The replica had all of the memories and experiences of Picard but his behavior was different from the captain. He was more outgoing and especially flirtatious with Dr. Crusher, inviting her to dinner, where the two had a romantic evening, including dancing. However, once the duplicate had enough information, it unceremoniously bade Crusher farewell. She teasingly held the real Picard responsible for his duplicate's actions when he was returned to the Enterprise. (TNG: "Allegiance")
Several times, Crusher began to explain her true feelings to Picard, once while they were held captive on Rutia IV, and another time with Picard's duplicate in the warp bubble universe, but she was interrupted in both instances. Both also displayed some jealousy when the other found a love interest, such as Crusher with Odan or Picard with Jenice Manheim and Nella Daren. (TNG: "The High Ground", "Remember Me", "The Host", "We'll Always Have Paris", "Lessons")
In 2370, Picard and Crusher were taken captive on the planet Kesprytt, and linked together by psi-wave devices in order to decrease their odds of escaping. The devices transmitted their thoughts to one another, where they learned each other's most intimate secrets. Crusher stayed up one night to listen to Picard's dreams, and Picard discovered that Crusher almost always had some biting comment at the ready, although she had learned to repress the urge to say them out loud. One night, Crusher brought up her late husband Jack, and feelings of guilt washed over Picard. She finally learned that he, too, felt an attraction, but did not act on it out of respect for his dead friend. Once they returned to the Enterprise, Picard expressed desire to further their relationship. However, Crusher ultimately decided that she did not want to ruin their friendship or be placed in a conflict of interest, and they decided to remain mutual friends. (TNG: "Attached")
In an unknown, alternate future timeframe, Picard and Crusher were married, but eventually separated. Dr. Beverly Picard agreed to take her ex-husband to the Romulan Neutral Zone aboard the USS Pasteur, an Olympic-class medical vessel of which she was in command. They shared a kiss in the "present" during that time. (TNG: "All Good Things...")
Guinan and Picard shared a long-term relationship, which, according to her, went "beyond friendship and beyond family." (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds") She also once said to Geordi La Forge that she was attracted to bald men. (TNG: "Booby Trap") In return, Picard once observed Guinan to be "very selective about whom she calls a friend." (TNG: "Ensign Ro")
Guinan originally met Picard in 1893 when he, Data, Riker, La Forge, Troi, and Dr. Crusher had traveled back in time from the 24th century to stop some Devidians from stealing energy from Humans in the 19th century. Guinan, learning of their predicament from Data who had thought she was the Guinan from the USS Enterprise-D, agreed to help in any way she could. When she was injured in the confrontation with the Devidians, Picard stayed behind to make sure she was all right. Samuel Clemens, returning from the 24th century, helped Picard return. (TNG: "Time's Arrow, Part II")
In 2365, Data's rights as an individual were challenged when cybernetics expert Commander Bruce Maddox wanted to disassemble the android for study. Picard challenged Maddox's assessment before the local Judge Advocate General. As the hearing neared its end, Picard admitted to Guinan he feared he was losing the case. Guinan asked what Maddox gained if he would be successful in disassembling and reassembling Data, and Picard responded he would possess the ability to build many more androids. He remembered Guinan's words that the decisions made today have implications for the future, and so Picard reasoned that if it would be decided that Data was indeed Starfleet property, all future androids would be also. Guinan noted there was an ancient word for that: slavery. Eventually, Picard won Data's case by pointing out that an entire race of Datas would be used as slaves, strictly against Federation principles. (TNG: "The Measure Of A Man")
Besides joining Picard on the holodeck, they would occasionally share a game of chess, and Guinan was also coached in fencing by Picard in 2368, begun when she considered exercise to strengthen her arm. Shortly prior to their match, the Enterprise had taken a Borg drone, later named Hugh, on board. Although Guinan initially questioned Picard's decision to have done so, she was convinced by La Forge to speak with the former drone. She could not, but acknowledged this Borg was developing a personality, becoming an individual. Upon her conversation with Hugh, she convinced Picard to speak with him as well. (TNG: "I Borg")
William T. Riker
When choosing a first officer prior to the launch of the Enterprise-D in 2363, Picard accessed the records of a number of candidates for the job. He eventually came across the record of one William T. Riker. Picard saw it as a glowing record filled with statistics that he felt told him nothing about the kind of officer Riker actually was. Picard was about to move on to the next candidate's record but stopped when he saw that a notation in Riker's record regarding an incident that took place on board the USS Hood in which Riker refused to allow Captain Robert DeSoto to beam down to Altair III. Picard was impressed that Riker would challenge his captain's authority if needed, and put the safety of the captain and the crew ahead of his own career if the need arose. This was a major factor in Picard's selection of Riker as his first officer – Picard wanted an officer who would not be afraid to stand up to him and be more concerned about the safety of the ship and mission than his personnel records. (TNG: "The Pegasus")
Picard was very cold towards Riker during their first meeting and ordered the manual docking as a test of Riker's abilities. When he performed the docking with great expertise and skill, Picard formally greeted Riker, requesting that his new first officer make sure that he not allow Picard to "make an ass of himself" in front of the many children aboard the ship. One year later, Picard felt as if he had not done a good job of congratulating Riker, so he did it once more, this time making his feelings clear. (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint", "The Icarus Factor")
Eventually, Riker and Picard became very good friends. With the best of intentions, Riker suggested that Picard vacation at Risa in 2366, asking him to return with a horga'hn. Picard did not realize the history behind the statue and kept it with him after purchasing it for Riker, making it appear as if the captain was seeking jamaharon. (TNG: "Captain's Holiday")
The only time Riker and Picard ever verbally fought in front of the Enterprise crew was in 2366 while under the influence of emotions projected by Ambassador Sarek, who was suffering from Bendii Syndrome. (TNG: "Sarek")
Picard tried to counsel Riker when he was offered command of the USS Melbourne in 2366, reminding him that the Enterprise would continue without his presence and that officers like Shelby were very much as he was before he learned the lessons necessary for command of a starship. Riker also came to Picard for advice when Worf wanted his help with the hegh'bat and when he struggled with a decision involving Soren. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "Ethics", "The Outcast")
In early 2369, members of the Enterprise crew, including Picard, were turned into twelve-year-olds due to the effects of a molecular reversion field. Unfortunately, a group of Ferengi commandeered the Enterprise about that time. Believed to be a child, Picard was confined to a classroom aboard the ship while Riker was held in the observation lounge. Picard threw a tantrum and demanded to see his "father," Riker. They pretended to be father and son in order for Picard to plant a suggestive message to Riker, requesting access to the Enterprise main computer from the classroom. Picard, along with the other affected Enterprise crewmembers, were able to design a plan to retake the Enterprise from the Ferengi. (TNG: "Rascals")
During the Pegasus incident of 2370, Picard tried to investigate the circumstances surrounding the ship's disappearance. He ran into many dead-ends as most records had been sealed, and had to use many favors in Starfleet Command to even get a look at the findings of the board convened to investigate the loss of the Pegasus. Riker would not divulge further information under the orders of Admiral Erik Pressman, and Picard reluctantly continued the search. He made it clear to Riker that he hoped he still placed the safety of the Enterprise as his top priority, and if Picard had found this to be untrue, he would reevaluate his trust in Riker. After the crisis was resolved, Picard visited Riker in the brig and returned him to duty aboard the Enterprise, understanding of Will's mistake in the past and satisfied that he had made the correct decisions in the present. (TNG: "The Pegasus")
Picard served as Riker's best man during his wedding to Deanna Troi in 2379. He gave a toast to Riker, calling him his "trusted right arm" and lamenting his loss of a fine first officer. (Star Trek Nemesis)
From 2364 to 2371, Lieutenant Commander Data was appointed as head of operations when serving on board the USS Enterprise-D, and head of operations from 2372 to 2379 on board the USS Enterprise-E. Data looked up to Picard as something of a father figure throughout his service under the captain, asking for his advice on numerous occasions in his quest to become more Human. Picard always gave Data advice whenever he could.
Following Natasha Yar's death in 2364, Data was puzzled about her death, thinking not about Tasha but rather how he would feel in her absence, thinking that he missed the purpose of her memorial, but Picard assured him that he understood the purpose of the memorial perfectly. (TNG: "Skin of Evil")
In 2365, Data's existence was threatened when Commander Bruce Maddox wished to disassemble and study Data to gain a better understanding of how his positronic brain functioned. Data refused to submit to Maddox's procedure, finding his research flawed, but Maddox claimed that Data was property of Starfleet and therefore not a sentient being and as a result had no choice other than to submit to the procedure. Captain Phillipa Louvois supported Maddox's claim, and Picard intervened by challenging their reasoning, saying that Data was indeed sentient and deserved the freedom to make his own decisions. He also said that Data represented an entire race and that forcing him to submit to Maddox's procedure is tantamount to slavery – strictly against Federation law. Ultimately, Louvois sided with Picard's standpoint and agreed that Data, android or not, was indeed sentient and entitled to the same rights as any other Starfleet officer. (TNG: "The Measure Of A Man")
In 2367, Picard's seemingly unbreakable trust in Data was tested when Data refused to fully cooperate with an investigation into a number of events that happened within a 24-hour time span, although Data claimed that the time span was only 30 seconds. Data's intransigence threatened to end his Starfleet career and even his own existence, but it was later revealed that Picard was himself responsible for Data's unusual behavior after an encounter with the Paxans in a T-Tauri type star system. (TNG: "Clues")
During the Klingon Civil War, the Federation made an indirect intervention with a blockade of Starfleet vessels placed in formation to use the pioneering tachyon detection grid in an effort to expose Romulan support for the House of Duras. Picard assigned all of his senior officers positions on board other ships, except for Data. Data questioned Picard about why he was not assigned command of a vessel, considering that there was a severe lack of senior officers available for the mission, wondering if he felt that his being an android made him unsuitable for command. Picard, slightly embarrassed by Data's question, assigned Data command of the USS Sutherland. During the blockade, Data disobeyed direct orders from Picard and was able to expose the Romulans' involvement in the civil war. Later, Data wished to submit himself for disciplinary action for disobeying a direct order from his superior officer, but Picard instead praised Data for not complying, summing up his belief of too many tragedies throughout history being directly traceable to officers "just following orders" rather than independently assessing their situations, with the words, "Mr. Data: nicely done." (TNG: "Redemption II")
In 2369, Data refused to allow a group of exocomps to be sacrificed in order to save the lives of Picard and Geordi La Forge, who were trapped on board the Particle Fountain Project space station, believing that they were sentient and, therefore, capable of making their own decisions. After agreeing to a compromise suggested by Commander William Riker, the exocomps were released and able to save the lives of Picard and La Forge. Picard understood the predicament that Data was faced with as he had defended Data's sentience just a few years previously, but this time the exocomps had no advocate and Data felt compelled to act on their behalf. Picard considered Data's actions to be the most "Human" decision that he had ever made. (TNG: "The Quality of Life")
Later that year, following an accident in main engineering that activated a dormant program in his positronic brain, Data sought advice from several officers, including Picard, on his "visions." Picard was curious why Data was studying thousands of different cultures to interpret his visions. Data said that he had no culture of his own, but Picard told Data that he did have a culture – a culture of one and that its validity is no less than that of a billion. Picard suggested that Data should consider what the visions meant to him instead of what they mean to other people. (TNG: "Birthright, Part I")
After a malfunctioning emotion chip fused with Data's positronic net in 2371, Data felt guilty for not saving La Forge from capture by Tolian Soran on board the Amargosa observatory. Overwhelmed by emotions, Data requested to be shut down until the chip could be removed. Although Picard felt sympathy for Data, he told him that part of having emotions is integrating them into one's life and learning to live with them, and denied Data his request. (Star Trek Generations)
In 2373, when the Enterprise-E traveled back to the year 2063 on Earth, Picard and Data initially went down to the planet to observe the damage the Borg had done to Zefram Cochrane's missile complex in Montana. Down in the missile silo of the Phoenix, Picard, upon touching the missile that would make history by becoming the first Human starship traveling at warp, explained to Data that sometimes a touch can make objects more "real." Upon suspecting a Borg presence aboard the Enterprise, Picard and Data transported back to the ship. Fighting off the Borg near main engineering, Data was soon captured and brought to the Borg Queen. Instead of attempting to assimilate Data, the Queen made him physically more Human by attaching Human skin onto his android skeleton.
When it appeared impossible to hold off the Borg any longer, Picard was convinced to initiate the Enterprise's auto-destruct sequence and ordered all remaining crew to evacuate. He himself went on to engineering to find Data and to convince the Queen, who he had encountered several years previously, to let Data go. Picard was even prepared to take Data's place at the Queen's side, willingly becoming her equal. Data, however, claimed he did not wish to go, even after the Queen ordered him away. Thus, the Queen ordered Picard's assimilation, but not before witnessing the destruction of the Phoenix by Data.
Data fired a spread of quantum torpedoes, but they missed by the smallest of margins. Quickly thereafter, he burst a plasma coolant tank, releasing plasma coolant which liquefied organic material on contact, killing the Borg. The Queen was killed, but Picard survived. Helping Data standing up, Picard asked him if he was ever tempted to join the Borg's cause. Data replied that, for a fraction of a second, hinting at his kiss with the Queen, he was. He added that, for an android, that brief moment was like an eternity. (Star Trek: First Contact)
Following the wedding of Riker and Deanna Troi in 2379, Data was confused by Picard's mixed feelings for the couple – although the captain was happy that Will was due to accept promotion to the rank of captain and take command of the USS Titan, and that his new wife was to transfer over to the Titan and take position as the ship's counselor, Picard was somewhat saddened by their departure and tried to explain to Data that experiencing feelings of both happiness and sadness at the same time are common in these situations.
At the climax of the Battle of the Bassen Rift, Data jumped across the void of space from the Enterprise-E to the Scimitar, saving Picard by using a prototype emergency transport unit, but sacrificed his own life to save the crew of the Enterprise by firing at the thalaron radiation generator and so destroying the Scimitar. Following the battle, Picard held a toast with the Enterprise-E's senior officers as a tribute to their fallen comrade. (Star Trek Nemesis)
By 2364, Lieutenant junior grade Worf was serving on the Enterprise-D as a junior bridge officer under Picard's command. Upon the death of Lieutenant Natasha Yar, he was promoted to chief tactical officer and security chief. (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint", "Skin of Evil", "The Child")
In 2366, the Klingon High Council accused Mogh, the deceased father of Lieutenant Worf, of treason. Picard, understanding the severity of the charges and their implications for Worf, had the Enterprise change course to Qo'noS. Worf's brother Kurn initially served as his Cha'DIch, but after an assassination attempt left him in critical condition, Worf asked Picard to take up the role. Picard initially declined, saying that there were younger, more able men on the ship from which Worf could choose. However, Worf insisted that there was no one he would rather have at his side. Picard accepted and stood by Worf when the conspiracy against his family was uncovered. (TNG: "Sins of the Father")
When the Klingon Civil War erupted in 2367, Worf resigned from Starfleet and fought on the side of Gowron against the forces of the Duras family. With the help of Picard, Worf and other Gowron supporters revealed Romulan assistance to the Duras cause. This collapsed support for the House of Duras, and Gowron won the chancellorship. Gowron restored the honor of the House of Mogh in thanks for its assistance during the war. Worf returned to Starfleet, but was reprimanded because he killed Duras in revenge. (TNG: "Redemption", "Redemption II")
Worf commanded the USS Defiant in the battle against the Borg at Sector 001, and fought the Borg temporal incursion into 2063. A heated conflict occurred between the two when Picard had called Worf a "coward" for not wanting to continue fighting the Borg aboard the Enterprise-E, and a furious Worf stating that if he were any other man he would kill him where he stood, to which Picard angrily ordered Worf off his bridge. Picard later apologized to Worf for his harsh comments and admitted that Worf was "the bravest man" he had ever known, and their friendship was restored. (Star Trek: First Contact)
Geordi La Forge
Like several crew members, Geordi La Forge was hand picked by Picard to serve aboard the Enterprise-D. Geordi impressed Picard with his above average work ethic during an inspection tour. (TNG: "The Next Phase") Picard has tremendous confidence in La Forge's ability to accomplish tasks he is assigned, which led to his eventual promotion to Chief Engineer, earning him the rank of Lieutenant Commander. (TNG: "The Child") He is one of the very few officers Picard addresses by his first name, indicating a close bond between them.
Picard and Laren had what could be described as a father/daughter-like relationship. When they first met, Picard wrote her off as dishonorable. He did, however, eventually take her under his wing and help her along a path towards redemption. (TNG: "Ensign Ro") Upon Ro's defection to a terrorist organization, she asked Will Riker to convey her deepest regrets to Picard for letting him down. Despite this, Picard was severely disillusioned by Ro's actions and felt betrayed in a very personal way. (TNG: "Preemptive Strike")
James T. Kirk
Although their association was brief, James T. Kirk and Jean-Luc Picard had profound personal effects on one another. Having been a captain of the Federation's flagship, an admiral and back again, Kirk advised Picard to not do anything that would have Starfleet move him away from the Enterprise, because as captain, he could make a difference. Very much like Spock and Leonard McCoy, Picard was instrumental in helping Kirk find meaning in his life after his greatest adventures were essentially over. In fact it could be argued that Picard is one of the most significant persons in Kirk's entire life, as he embarked on his final adventure with him and passed away knowing that he had "made a difference." Picard laid Kirk to rest on Veridian III and was his lone mourner. (Star Trek Generations)
Spock was confronted by Picard and Data on Romulus, where he was suspected to have betrayed the Federation. To the contrary, Spock was on a "personal mission of peace," and Picard insisted on staying until Spock's affairs were complete. Spock saw much of his father, Sarek, in Picard and was very resentful of his perceived meddling in his affairs. However, Picard and Spock eventually developed a mutual respect for each other, with Picard offering Spock to mind meld with him to see how Sarek truly saw his son. (TNG: "Unification I", "Unification II") Spock would later utilize Picard and Deanna Troi in delivering defecting Romulan officials to the Federation. (TNG: "Face of the Enemy")
Picard was Gowron's Arbiter of Succession following the deaths of K'mpec and Duras. (TNG: "Reunion") Although he initially refused to aid him during the Klingon Civil War, Picard later convinced Starfleet to assist Gowron's forces by exposing the alliance between Lursa and B'Etor and Sela, a high-ranking Romulan officer. (TNG: "Redemption", "Redemption II"). Although he considered Picard an honorable ally of the Klingon Empire, Gowron was less than accommodating when asked to assist Starfleet find Spock on Romulus. Nevertheless, on more than one occasion, Picard used his relationship with Gowron as leverage against other Klingons. (TNG: "Unification I", "Aquiel") However, these events appeared to be reconciled during the events surrounding the resurrection of Kahless. (TNG: "Rightful Heir")
Q and Picard had a complicated relationship. Even though he was very antagonistic towards them, Q clearly had a great respect and affection for the crew of the Enterprise-D, particularly Picard (TNG: "Qpid"), who in contrast viewed Q with a tremendous amount of disdain and distrust (TNG: "Deja Q"). It was not until their final two encounters that Picard became grateful to Q for their association. (TNG: "Tapestry", "All Good Things...")
As a direct clone of Picard, Shinzon developed a distinctive and deadly rivalry with the captain of the Enterprise, much like Will Riker's rivalry with Thomas Riker and Data's rivalry with Lore. (TNG: "Second Chances", "Brothers") Picard saw traits in Shinzon that he perceived to be flaws within himself. He was bothered by the fact that Shinzon was capable of genocides of interstellar magnitude and was haunted by the notion that he may have chosen the same path as Shinzon had he led his life. During Shinzon's attempt to carry out these genocides, Picard implored him to let go of his past and embrace change, which Shinzon quickly rejected. Picard was significantly pained at the death of Shinzon, but this pain was replaced mere moments later after Data sacrificed himself to save Picard. (Star Trek Nemesis)
The House of Duras
Jean-Luc Picard became a prominent figure in Klingon politics, largely due to his loyalty to Worf during the trial of the House of Mogh in 2366. Picard was determined to uncover the conspiracy that was attempting to frame Mogh for crimes committed by Ja'rod. During his investigation, Duras, son of Ja'rod sent an assassin to murder Picard, but the attempt was unsuccessful and ultimately revealed the complicity of K'mpec and the High Council in these crimes. Even after the death of Duras at the hands of Worf, the House of Duras continued to be antagonistic towards the Federation, with particular emphasis placed on Picard and the crew of the Enterprise-D, which was eventually destroyed by Lursa and B'Etor. (TNG: "Sins of the Father", "Redemption", "Redemption II"; Star Trek Generations)
After the death of his son caused by Captain Picard during the Battle of Maxia, Bok had tried to seek vengeance on him twice. First by having him destroy the Enterprise-D through a mind altering device he hid within the derelict of the USS Stargazer, then by attempting to kill his alleged son Jason Vigo (which whom he re-sequenced his DNA in order to fool Picard into thinking he was his son). (TNG: "The Battle", "Bloodlines")
The Borg/Borg Queen
After being assimilated by the Borg, Picard (assuming the identity of Locutus) then went to destroy nearly all Federation starships at the Battle of Wolf 359 before proceeding to Earth for an attempted assimilation of that planet. After being de-assimilated, Picard had long resented the fact that the Borg had used his knowledge and experience to kill and/or assimilate innocent people, and developed a hatred for the Borg that would become a defining trait in his later encounters with them; during the incident in which the Borg attempted to disrupt First Contact, he became increasingly volatile and irrational, and would destroy drones with a modicum of enjoyment- even if they were former members of his crew that had only just been injected with nanoprobes. This resentment had stayed with him at least six years after he was first assimilated. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "The Best of Both Worlds, Part II", "Reunion", "I Borg", "Descent", "Descent, Part II"; Star Trek: First Contact)
Alternate realities and timelines
- In 2365, the USS Enterprise-D was pulled into an energy vortex and could not return to normal space. In order not to be pulled even further, La Forge had to hold the ship at maximum warp, but such power drainage threatened to destroy the Enterprise. Thinking that the vortex recognized him as the "brain" of the ship and wanted him, and not the Enterprise, Picard boarded the shuttle El-Baz and left the vessel. The Enterprise was still destroyed, and the El-Baz was pulled six hours back in time, where it was picked up by that time period's Enterprise. Picard encountered his past self, who wanted to discover what would happen to the ship in the future and how to prevent it. Frantic, the future Picard tried to depart in the El-Baz again, but his past counterpart decided that it was time "to end the cycle" and killed him with a phaser. The Enterprise was then able to escape the vortex. (TNG: "Time Squared")
- In 2366, the USS Enterprise-C emerged from a temporal rift. Its disappearance from the year 2344 caused an altered timeline, where the Federation was losing a war against the Klingon Empire. Picard was still the USS Enterprise-D's commanding officer, though more toughened due to the horrors of war. Upon Guinan's advice, Picard decided to send the Enterprise-C back to the past. After Captain Rachel Garrett was killed during a Klingon attack, Picard allowed Richard Castillo to assume command and return the Enterprise-C to 2344. (TNG: "Yesterday's Enterprise")
- In an alternate timeline created by Q, Picard was given the chance to walk away from his fight with the Nausicaan that caused serious injury to his heart, forcing a bionic replacement to be installed. When he returned to the present, Picard was a mere lieutenant junior grade, with Worf as his supervisor. This was because his near-death experience made the young Picard realize just how fragile life was and how important it could be, thus making him even more determined to make his mark in the universe and take risks; as it was, all Picard learned from the incident was to play it safe and not take risks. Picard convinced Q to allow him to correct the damage to his timeline and returned to his reality (although it was never confirmed whether this actually happened or if it was just a near-death hallucination). (TNG: "Tapestry")
- In 2370, Lieutenant Worf encountered a quantum fissure which caused him to begin shifting between quantum realities. In several universes, Picard was still captain of the Enterprise and attended a surprise birthday party for Worf, though his services were stated to be required on the bridge. In the final universe in which Worf arrived, William Riker was the captain, as Picard was lost in the Borg encounter of 2367. In another reality, the Borg had invaded the Federation and the Enterprise was one of the few ships left. Worf was finally returned to his own quantum reality and the quantum fissure was sealed. (TNG: "Parallels")
- In 2370, while standing trial by Q, Picard's consciousness was shifting between three alternate timelines. In an alternate 2364, Picard disobeyed Starfleet orders from the moment he arrived on board the Enterprise at Earth Station McKinley. He called a red alert while docked at the station, ordered the ship to the Devron system instead of to Farpoint Station and took the vessel into a temporal anomaly there. In an alternate 2370, Picard was diagnosed with Irumodic Syndrome by Dr. Crusher. This caused her to reconsider her relationship with Picard, and she reversed her earlier decision to remain just friends. The Enterprise was dispatched to the Devron system near the Romulan Neutral Zone where it discovered the temporal anomaly. In an unknown, alternate future timeframe, Picard found himself at his family's vineyard with Geordi La Forge. Picard contacted Riker, now an admiral and commanding officer of Starbase 247, for help in investigating the anomaly, but Riker refused to allow him passage to the Neutral Zone, thinking Picard had been affected by his Irumodic Syndrome and was delusional. Later, Picard convinced his ex-wife, Beverly Picard, to take her medical ship, the USS Pasteur, to investigate the anomaly. The Pasteur was attacked and destroyed by Klingon battleships, but the Enterprise, under command of Admiral Riker, arrived to rescue the crew and fight off the Klingons. Picard once again pleaded with Riker to return to the Devron system, but he was then sedated and returned to quarters. Armed with new information gathered from the other two timeframes, Picard woke and went to talk to Riker and the other former Enterprise officers, and convinced them that the anomaly existed. The Enterprise returned just in time to watch it form, and Riker ordered the Enterprise into the anomaly, where it used a static warp shell in concert with the other Enterprises to collapse it. After the anomaly was sealed, the timelines were erased, and only Picard retained memory of those events. He told his staff of his experiences in the future, in hopes that things such as the conflict between Worf and Riker that followed Deanna Troi's death never happen. (TNG: "All Good Things...")
- Picard was briefly trapped in the Nexus during a mission to stop renegade El-Aurian scientist Dr. Tolian Soran from destroying the Veridian system. In the perfect world in the Nexus, his nephew René (who had recently died in a fire) was still alive, and he had a wife and four children. Realizing that it wasn't real, he rejected the reality offered to him and left the Nexus to defeat Soran with the aid of Captain James T. Kirk. (Star Trek Generations)
- As part of Reginald Barclay's holo-addiction, he had created at least two programs that had recreations of Jean-Luc. One was a recreation of the USS Enterprise-D, the other, Barclay Program 15, had Picard as one of The Three Musketeers. (TNG: "Hollow Pursuits")
- A Jean-Luc Picard hologram was in Barash's holoprogram, this future Picard was a full admiral. (TNG: "Future Imperfect")
"Shut off that damn noise! Go to yellow alert."
"If we're going to be damned, let's be damned for what we really are."
"The quest for youth, Number One. So futile."
"I am Locutus of Borg. Resistance is futile. Your life, as it has been, is over. From this time forward, you will service... us."
"The first duty of every Starfleet officer is to the truth, whether it is scientific truth or historical truth or personal truth. It is the guiding principle on which Starfleet is based!"
"Federation starship Enterprise: Surrender and prepare to be boarded."
"That will be the day."
"'With the first link, the chain is forged. The first speech censured, the first thought forbidden, the first freedom denied, chains us all irrevocably.' Those words were uttered by Judge Aaron Satie as wisdom and warning. The first time any man's freedom is trodden on, we're all damaged."
"There... are... four... lights!"
"There is a way out of every box, a solution to every puzzle, it's just a matter of finding it."
"Someone once told me that time is a predator that stalks us all our lives but I rather believe that time is a companion that goes with us on a journey and reminds us to cherish every moment... because it will never come again. What we leave behind is not as important as how we've lived."
- - After the destruction of the Enterprise-D (Star Trek Generations)
"No! No! I will not sacrifice the Enterprise. We've made too many compromises already, too many retreats. They invade our space and we fall back. They assimilate entire worlds and we fall back. Not again! The line must be drawn here! This far, no further! And I will make them pay for what they've done!"
- - To Lily Sloane, about seeking revenge on the Borg and not losing his ship (Star Trek: First Contact)
"Fifteen years, I've been waiting to say that."
- - Picard and Data (Star Trek Nemesis)
"Things are only impossible until they're not!"
"Let us make sure history never forgets the name, Enterprise."
"Make it so!"
- - His order for implementing an idea just suggested (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
- - Another famous order typically in reference to going into warp (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
"Tea, Earl Grey, hot."
"What the devil?" or "What in Heaven's name?"
- - His more polite versions of "What the hell?" (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
- - Usually said when someone wants to enter a room that he is in (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
"Shut up, Wesley!"
- - On several occasions... (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
In 2369, after Vash arrived on Deep Space 9, Miles O'Brien told Benjamin Sisko about her relationship with Picard, explaining " Well Sir, Vash and Captain Picard were friends. Close friends, if you follow my meaning." While Sisko replied "Somehow she doesn't seem to be his type," O'Brien thought it was because Picard "likes a good challenge."
Later when Q saw Vash working over Quark, he described her actions as "perfectly vile," adding "If that's the kind of company you kept before meeting me, it's no wonder you ended up with Picard."
Later yet, when Q placed Sisko in a boxing match, he was shocked after Sisko knocked him to the ground. "You hit me... Picard never hit me!", to which Sisko shot back, "I'm not Picard!"
Finally, when the crew of the station could not tie the odd happening on the station to one of the artifacts Vash had brought aboard, Q appeared before the senior staff and claimed how "Picard and his lackeys would have solved all this technobabble hours ago," before directing to Sisko, that it was "No wonder you're not commanding a starship." (DS9: "Q-Less")
Later that year, after a member of the Q Continuum arrived on her ship seeking asylum, Kathryn Janeway automatically assumed he was Picard's Q - which instead made him nervous and agitated. When that Q, tasked with capturing the renegade, appeared on the bridge, she realized that he was the being she'd heard so much about, he laughed and asked her, "Has Jean-Luc been whispering about me behind my back?" (VOY: "Death Wish")
In her effort to look through every log entry of Starfleet captains who had contact with the Borg, Captain Janeway cited Picard's words among others: "In their collective state, the Borg are utterly without mercy – driven by one will alone, the will to conquer. They are beyond redemption, beyond reason", with Chakotay claiming that she had unknowingly mimicked Picard's vocal mannerisms while quoting him. (VOY: "Scorpion")
In 2375, Ensign Nog mentioned Al Lorenzo having a curious interest in taking holophotos of himself sitting behind the desks of famous Starfleet captains. Usually, he would sneak into their offices, but the Dominion War made it difficult for him to get away. Among the photos in his collection included Lorenzo sitting behind the desks of such famous commanders as Robert DeSoto and Jean-Luc Picard. (DS9: "Treachery, Faith and the Great River")
Quotes about Picard
"...the heart of an explorer, and the soul of a poet."
- - Tasha Yar, ("Skin of Evil")
"I've never known anyone with more drive, determination or more courage than Jean-Luc Picard."
- - Admiral J.P Hanson, ("The Best of Both Worlds, Part II")
"Jean-Luc, I never knew you were such a cad. I'm impressed."
- - Q, ("Tapestry")
"Really, Vash, I can't believe you're still pining for Jean-Luc, that self righteous do-gooder."
- - Q, ("Q-Less")
"Actually, what I was hoping for was a little witty repartee, but I see I'm not going to get any of that either. At least your beloved Jean-Luc knows how to turn a phrase..."
- - Q, ("Q-Less")
- Born in La Barre, France, on Earth.
- Applies to Starfleet Academy for the first time, but is rejected.
- Is admitted to Starfleet Academy, wins Academy marathon.
- Graduates Starfleet Academy, and has to be implanted with an artificial heart after a fight with a Nausicaan.
- Assumes command of the Constellation-class starship USS Stargazer. (TNG: "The Battle")
- Has a relationship with Miranda Vigo. (TNG: "Bloodlines")
- Participates in the Battle of Maxia against a Ferengi vessel; invents a new tactical ploy to win the battle, later dubbed the "Picard Maneuver." (TNG: "The Battle")
- Assumes command of the USS Enterprise-D; his first mission as captain involves contact with the Q entity. (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint")
- Is captured by the Borg and forced to become a member of the Borg Collective, leading the invasion of the Federation as Locutus of Borg; this includes leading the Borg victory over the Federation at the Battle of Wolf 359. Despite Borg control over him, Picard manages to relay information to the crew of the Enterprise which allows the Borg to be defeated. (TNG: "The Best of Both Worlds", "The Best of Both Worlds, Part II")
- Prevents an attempt by the Romulans to take over the Klingon Empire by indirectly interfering in the Klingon Civil War. (TNG: "Redemption", "Redemption II")
- Discovers an ancient message left by the first humanoid beings in our galaxy. (TNG: "The Chase")
- Blights the second Borg invasion of the Federation, led by individualized Borg drones under the influence of the android Lore. (TNG: "Descent", "Descent, Part II")
- The Enterprise-D is destroyed over Veridian III. (Star Trek Generations)
- Is assigned command of the USS Enterprise-E. (Star Trek: First Contact)
- Travels back in time to 2063 to defeat an attempt by the Borg to create an alternate timeline in which the Federation is never created. (Star Trek: First Contact)
- Rebels against Starfleet Admiral Matthew Dougherty in order to protect the Ba'ku. (Star Trek: Insurrection)
- Travels to Romulus to meet Praetor Shinzon, a clone of himself; kills Shinzon during the battle with the Scimitar. (Star Trek Nemesis)
|Commanding officers of the starships Enterprise|
|Enterprise NX-01:||Archer • T'Pol • Tucker • Lorian|
|USS Enterprise:||April • Pike • Kirk • Decker • Spock|
|USS Enterprise-D:||Picard • Riker • Jellico • Halloway|
|ISS Enterprise NX-01:||Forrest|
|ISS Enterprise NCC-1701:||Pike • Kirk|
|USS Enterprise:||Pike • Kirk|
Jean-Luc Picard in:
Picard was played by Patrick Stewart in all of the character's television and film appearances. David Tristan Birkin played Picard as a child in TNG: "Rascals", while Marcus Nash appeared as Picard as a young ensign in "Tapestry". Tom Hardy was seen as Cadet Picard in a photograph in Star Trek Nemesis; Hardy also played Picard's clone, Shinzon, in the same film.
According to the Star Trek: The Next Generation Companion (2nd ed., p. 13) the original casting call sent out to agents asked for the following:
"CAPT. Julien Picard – A Caucasian man in his 50s who is very youthful and in prime physical condition. Born in Paris, his Gallic accent appears when deep emotions are triggered. He is definitely a 'romantic' and believes strongly in concepts like honor and duty. Capt. Picard commands the Enterprise. He should have a mid-Atlantic accent, and a wonderfully rich speaking voice."
The character of Picard changed quite a bit from the March 1987 version of the Writers/Directors Guide. In that guide, he was born in Paris, carried a touch of French phrasing in his speech, and pretended that France is "the only true civilization" on Earth (reminiscent of Pavel Chekov).
In 1986, D.C. Fontana made an attempt to recruit actor Stephen Macht for the role. "She called me in 1986 and said she wanted me to come in and meet Gene Roddenberry," said Macht. "She told me he was the writer of Star Trek and she wanted him to meet me. So I went in, I sit down opposite him in his office, and D.C. was with me. He said, 'D.C. has brought me clips of everything you've done since you've been in Hollywood. You are my next Star Trek hero, Picard.' And I'm full of piss and vinegar at that time. I was forty-two and doing well. I said to him, 'I've seen these things, and I don't want to do them. I don't want to speak to guys with six heads for the rest of my life.' He said, 'It's not about that, Stephen. They're morality tales. I want you to do it. You just have to come read for the studio head.' 'I don't want to read. You want me to do it? Offer it to me. You know who my agent is.'" (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 92)
Also considered for the role of Picard were Louis Gossett, Jr., Yaphet Kotto, James Earl Jones, Billy Dee Williams, Avery Brooks, and Keir Dullea. By 9 April 1987, a meeting between the studio and Kotto was scheduled (with no audition to be held) on 14 April 1987. On or shortly before 9 April, Kotto's agent called TNG Casting Director Junie Lowry, suggesting Kotto would fly down only if Paramount paid to have him flown down, and that Kotto would prefer to take Gene Roddenberry for lunch rather than having a meeting. Lowry replied that a meeting would be preferable to everyone at the studio, owing to all the busy schedules involved, and notified the agent that Kotto would be meeting not only Roddenberry but also both producers and Jeff Hayes. She also said it was unlikely that the studio would pay to fly Kotto in for a meeting, to which the agent quickly began to concede on that point. He then enquired as to how serious the studio's interest was in casting Kotto, a question already asked. Lowry answered that, if the studio decided to go for a black captain as the series lead, Kotto was under extremely serious consideration. The meeting remained scheduled, and Lowry included a written account of the phone call in a casting availability update memo she sent to "all concerned" on 9 April 1987. In the memo, she listed Gossett, Kotto, and Williams as being available, whereas Jones and Brooks were noted as unavailable. As noted in the same document, Gossett's agent doubted, however, that Gossett would be interested, and a VHS tape of Dullea was meanwhile being shot in New York. The casting notes also mentioned Stephen Macht, without specifying the role he was being considered for, though the memo did state, "He is certainly very interested."
Robert Justman was instrumental in the casting of Picard. Patrick Stewart was discovered by Justman and his wife when preproduction work for the then-forthcoming Star Trek series had been taking place at Paramount for about a month or two. The event occurred one night while Stewart was giving a dramatic reading at the University of California at Los Angeles, as part of a UCLA extension course on humor which Justman and his wife were taking. That night, Stewart was one of two speakers reading from Shakespearean comedies and Noël Coward. While Justman sat with his wife and watched the readings, he thought Stewart looked familiar, but couldn't quite place him. "Patrick sat down, pushed up his jacket sleeves to display his massive forearms, and commenced to read," Justman reflected. "He spoke a few sentences and I was thunderstruck. I turned to my wife, Jackie, and I said, 'I think I found our new captain!'" Justman was so impressed by Stewart's performance that night that, the next day, he called the Screen Actor's Guild and determined who Stewart's agent was in Los Angeles, because the actor was living in London and was temporarily in America just to perform the reading at UCLA. Contacting the agent, Justman arranged for Stewart to meet with Gene Roddenberry and Justman himself at Roddenberry's house the following Monday. "Patrick came in his rental car, and we sat around for thirty-forty minutes," Justman continued, "and then he made his good-byes and left to fly back to England. After he drove away, Gene closed the door and turned to me, and I will quote him exactly. He said, 'I won't have him.'" Roddenberry himself noted, "My first reaction was, 'Jesus Christ, Bob, I don't want a bald man.'" (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 89-90 & 91)
As of 13 April 1987, the performers who were being considered to play Picard included Mitch Ryan, Roy Thinnes, Yaphet Kotto, and Patrick Bauchau. On that day Bauchau successfully auditioned for Gene Roddenberry; the "favorites" for the part were meanwhile regarded as Bauchau as well as Patrick Stewart, with the other three performers scheduled to start auditioning the following week. These developments were included in a general TNG casting memo from John Ferraro to John Pike (also forwarded to Jeff Hayes), sent the same day as Bachau's audition – 13 April 1987. 
Another memo sent on that date specifically pertained to the casting of Picard, and was from Junie Lowry to, again, "all concerned." It noted about Yaphet Kotto that, although he was available for the part, the studio was still waiting to find out if he would fly down or would only send a tape of himself. The same memo listed Keir Dullea, John Saxon, George Hearn, Lee Van Cleef, Andrew Duggan, John McMartin, Theodore Bikel, Thomas Hill, Edward Mulhare, Dick Shawn, James Olson, Don Ameche, James Gammon, Telly Savalas, and Billy Dee Williams as all being available for the part. Both Mulhare and Savalas were noted as actually being interested in it, too. However, both Dullea and McMartin were in New York, and the studio was yet to receive a tape from Dullea, who refused to audition for the role without a test option agreement first being arranged. Hearn and Williams weren't interested (in Williams' case, his disinterest was because the series would be syndicated), and Hill would only be available after 24 April. Anthony Quayle was listed as possibly being interested, though he was currently in London. Performers who, despite having been considered, were listed as not available included Paul Gleason, Noble Willingham, Moses Gunn, William Devane, John Hillerman, Robert Hogan, Fred Gwynne, Dana Elcar, Peter Donat, and Peter Michael Goetz. Listed as uninterested were George Grizzard, Rip Torn, and Scott Glenn (Torn wasn't interested in doing any tv at that point in his career). 
Shortly after Robert Justman discovered Patrick Stewart, Rick Berman met Stewart. Like Justman, Berman was impressed, so he advised Justman that they needed to persuade Roddenberry to cast Stewart as Picard. "Bob said to me, 'We can't. When Gene makes up his mind, it's a waste of time to try and change it,'" Berman recounted. "But in my case, ignorance was bliss. I didn't believe that." Justman himself stated about Roddenberry, "No matter what I said, he was adamant, and the reason was because the character he had created in his own mind was a very hairy Frenchman, so we embarked upon a campaign that lasted for some months, and when Rick Berman came on the show and became supervising producer with me, Rick jumped all over it, too, and said, 'He's perfect!'" Berman characterized himself as "the guy who basically bugged Gene into realizing that Patrick was the best Picard." Roddenberry recalled, "In his wisdom, Justman kept his mouth shut and let me grow accustomed to him." Said Justman, "Our casting director was for it, everyone was for it, except Gene. We went through everybody in town and in foreign countries trying to find the right person to play the captain, and couldn't. Finally, our last candidate came in, read for us and left, and we were sitting there – the casting director, Rick, Gene, and myself – and he finally turned around and looked at us and said, 'All right, I'll go with Patrick,' and that was it. It was so right, I've never been more sure of anything in my life, at least in the business, than casting Patrick in that role. He was everything that a captain ought to be." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 90 & 91)
At first, Gene Roddenberry's acceptance of Patrick Stewart as Picard was conditional. "He said, 'But when we bring him to the studio for the final audition, I want him to wear a wig, because I don't want this guy going in bald,'" Rick Berman remembered. Via phone call to London, Stewart had a wig made by one of the most well-renowned theatrical wig makers in England, then had the wig dispatched to America. When TNG Supervising Producer David Livingston first met Stewart, the actor visited Livingston's trailer (where Livingston was otherwise alone) with a box of wigs, and asked where he could find the make-up and hair staff, as the production crew wanted to see what he looked like with the wigs on. Stewart eventually found someone who helped him put on the wig. He then auditioned for John Pike, who was well aware that Stewart was really bald. "He had seen all the photographs of him, and we had played him a tape of Patrick's clips," Berman noted. (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 91-92)
By this time, the only remaining contender for the part, according to Rick Berman, was Stephen Macht. Like Stewart, he also auditioned for John Pike. Despite regarding Macht as "a very good actor," Berman believed he wasn't anywhere near as suitable for the role as Patrick Stewart was. Years later, Macht admitted that, at that point in his life, he hadn't been prepared to play such a major role, partly because he had been too young and egotistical, and partly because he had been uninterested in doing a series. "I just was not ready," he declared. "I would be now, but I wasn't then. In the intervening years, of course, after so much experience, I found that there are so many layers to who I am that I can reveal slowly and that would have made a TV series like The Next Generation more appealing. Looking back at it, I thank Dorothy and Gene for a marker in my life that I can really think about in terms of seeing what the trajectory has been over a whole period of years [....] Had I known then what I know now, I would have knocked the shit out of that role." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 92)
Ultimately, John Pike opted for Patrick Stewart rather than Stephen Macht. Pike did so with one extra piece of advice: that Stewart "lose the wig." Remarked Berman, "That was the best three words we could have heard." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 92) In a one-line memo Helen Mossler sent Gene Roddenberry on 1 May 1987, Mossler announced, "Patrick Stewart's deal has been finalized and has been sent to his agent for his signature." 
Picard was originally intended to be in his early fifties, with a twenty-two-year stint captaining the Stargazer(citation needed • edit); Stewart himself was forty-seven in 1987. The show established a long gap between the Stargazer and the Enterprise-D; the Okuda timeline states he was fifty-nine in TNG Season 1 (and thus is seventy-four in Star Trek Nemesis, compared to Stewart having been sixty-two when that film was made).(citation needed • edit) Based on this information, in the upcoming new series about Picard, he will then be ninety-four years old as the series has been announced to be set twenty years after the events of Nemesis.
When Patrick Stewart accepted the offer to play Picard, a friend of his asked him what he thought it would feel like to portray "an American icon." At the time, that prospect made Stewart feel uneasy. (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 93)
During an interview with Michael Parkinson, Patrick Stewart related how, in his first press conference for The Next Generation, a reporter asked Gene Roddenberry how Captain Picard could be bald, figuring that baldness would surely be cured by the 24th century. Roddenberry replied, "By the 24th century, no one will care." 
In a 2014 appearance on NPR's quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me!, Patrick Stewart indicated that the real life reason for Picard lacking a French accent was that it sounded silly when he attempted it:
- "Yes, you know, I did somewhere in the bowels of Paramount Pictures, there – I hope it still exists – there is a recording of me on camera playing Captain Picard – some of the scenes from the pilot episode with a French accent.... If he was a Frenchman, why shouldn't he have a French accent? And, I mean, can you imagine it? (imitating French accent) Space, ze final frontier. (applause) It would not have worked. I have a great respect for the French and certainly I adore the French language, but no. It would not have worked. I doubt I would have sounded more like Inspector Clouseau."
Patrick Stewart was, though, fascinated with attempting to assert strength in his portrayal of Picard. "It was always important to me to try and establish and affirm the quiet, but absolute authority he has on the ship," said Stewart, "and that seemed to be successful." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 94)
Picard was irrevocably altered by his ordeal as Locutus, in "The Best of Both Worlds" and "The Best of Both Worlds, Part II". "Picard became more Human than ever before," commented writer Michael Piller. "He was the indestructible captain, untouchable, above all risk and danger, and suddenly, in this two-parter, he is a man who's been raped by the Borg and has to deal emotionally with huge consequences [....] And after that, Picard was more complex, never the same; he was a far more interesting character after that." (Mission Overview, TNG Season 4 DVD special feature) Ira Steven Behr agreed that temporarily having Picard, "who, compared to Kirk, was an administrator more than an adventurer," be transformed into a Borg "kind of gave his humanity back to him" and was a "genius" idea. Patrick Stewart concurred, "Making the man more human and vulnerable and prone to error and mistake was a great decision." (William Shatner Presents: Chaos on the Bridge)
David Livingston, who directed the TNG episodes "The Mind's Eye" and "Power Play", found it was relatively very easy to direct Patrick Stewart's characterization of Picard. "The only run-in I ever had with him, I was on the set as a producer and I thought I heard him say a line wrong, and the director said 'cut, print.' I told the director, I think Patrick got that line wrong. Patrick said, 'No, I didn't.' The director said, 'It sounded fine to me.' I had the sound man, Alan Bernard, play back the take, and I was right. They did the line over again, and Patrick said thanks. That was dangerous. I could have kept my mouth shut, but I had a responsibility. That seems like a minor thing, but when you tell Patrick Stewart he went up on a line and nobody else heard it, that's dangerous." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 94-95)
Other than in alternate timelines, Picard appeared as a captain throughout the entire run of TNG and the subsequent films. Data and Dr. Crusher are the only other characters from TNG to remain at the ranks they started with, though a costuming error in "All Good Things..." has Data wearing the wrong insignia for part of that episode.
Picard is one of five characters to appear in two series premieres, (TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint" and DS9: "Emissary"), the others being Miles O'Brien, Quark, Broik and Morn. He also has the distinction of having spoken the first lines of dialogue in both series, and was the first character seen on screen in both, albeit in the form of Locutus on the latter.
Apart from James T. Kirk, Picard is the only person to captain two Enterprises, commanding the USS Enterprise-D and the USS Enterprise-E. With the restoration of a cut scene from an extended version of the episode "The Measure Of A Man" (thus making the scene canon), Picard also shares with Pavel Chekov the distinction of having served aboard two starships named Enterprise and one named USS Reliant.
Picard has the distinction of having on-screen dialogue with three of the other main Star Trek captains, the most by any other captain. Picard meets with James T. Kirk in the film Star Trek Generations, Benjamin Sisko in the DS9 pilot "Emissary", and Kathryn Janeway in the film Star Trek Nemesis (although in this last instance, they communicated over a viewscreen without actually meeting face-to-face). He has not had any on-screen dialogue with Jonathan Archer.
Picard is the only lead character in any Star Trek production who is unambiguously not American. Jonathan Archer was born in upstate New York and raised in San Francisco, California; Christopher Pike was born in Mojave, California; James T. Kirk was from Iowa (his alternate reality counterpart was born in space, but raised in Iowa); Benjamin Sisko was born in New Orleans, Louisiana; and Kathryn Janeway was born in Bloomington, Indiana. Michael Burnham was also born on Earth, and while her nationality hasn't yet been confirmed outright, she speaks with an American accent.
Picard's sense of French national pride only surfaced briefly in some early episodes, most notably "The Last Outpost". Over the run of TNG, the character adopted several characteristics commonly associated with the English: he enjoys the works of William Shakespeare, and is never seen reading any works of literature by a French author. He drinks Earl Grey tea, an English beverage named after an English nobleman, and is rarely seen drinking wine, a beverage which is commonplace in French life, only drinking it on three occasions, in "Family", again in "First Contact", and at the end of Star Trek Nemesis. Additionally, his father, brother and nephew all spoke with English accents.
At least initially, fans of Star Trek: The Original Series responded unfavorably to a new captain of the Enterprise being introduced in TNG. Rick Berman later remembered, "They felt, how can you put a new captain at the seat of the Enterprise? [....] And when they heard it was going to be a forty-year-old bald Englishman, they kind of went nuts." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 89) Eventually, the viewers became more accepting towards Picard, much to Patrick Stewart's relief. He commented, "I'm happy that people accepted the captain as a non-American [....] They refer to the vivid contrast between the previous captain and myself, not in a competitive way, but in that they are so different there isn't any sense of overlap." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 93) Berman has proclaimed that, ultimately, the fact that Captain Picard was bald was "the greatest sales point for The Next Generation." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 92) Picard was most popular for straightening his uniform when standing up (the "Picard Maneuver", different from the tactical maneuver he first performed with the Stargazer), saying "Engage" after plotting a course, and "Make it so" when agreeing with someone's suggested orders.
The cast and crew of TNG approved of Patrick Stewart as Picard. Co-Producer Brannon Braga offered, "So much of the success of Next Generation was Patrick Stewart, quite frankly. We always used to say the guy could read a phone book and we'd watch him. He just was so good. I always said a Star Trek series is only as good as its captain, and Picard was pretty fucking great." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, p. 93) David Livingston agreed, "If anyone would captain a starship, it would be [Stewart]. He would never blink. Only when he was off-camera. If you watch him on-camera, I defy you to find a time he was blinking, because of the intensity of his captain [....] It was a delight to direct him." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 92 & 94)
Thomas Dougherty, professor of American Studies at Brandeis University, observed, "Captain Picard – he of the balding dome and clipped accents – blossomed as the unchallenged power, the series' pivotal character and controlling force. Ensemble sensibilities aside, the writing staff conceded the obvious – that a strong central protagonist is as necessary to drive the narrative as command the Enterprise. In Shakesperean actor Patrick Stewart, the new crew found a perfect tribal patriarch. Stewart exudes authority and presence, consistently keeping the proceedings away from Space Patrol kitsch. Even in a dumb costume, declaiming deep-space doubletalk, he brings a kind of Elizabethan stature to his role." (The Fifty-Year Mission: The Next 25 Years, pp. 93-94)
In recent years, several popular Internet memes have surfaced in connection with Picard, most notably the "Picard facepalm" (originally based on a scene from "Deja Q"), and its numerous derivatives. 
In the alternate future of the DS9 book series Millennium, Picard was captain of the USS Enterprise-E. He took Ensign Nog under his wing after Nog was assigned to the Enterprise. On stardate 52145.7, Picard attempted to intercept a Dominion warship carrying Weyoun 5. However, Weyoun escaped into the Pah-wraith wormhole. In 2381, the Enterprise was destroyed at the Battle of Rigel VII. According to Thomas Riker, a Starfleet hearing was called, since Picard had lost his third ship (the Stargazer, the Enterprise-D, and the Enterprise-E), but the case was dismissed and Picard was given command of the Enterprise-F in 2383, described as the "first of its class." In 2385, Picard accepted a promotion to admiral, and William T. Riker was given command of the Enterprise. When Earth was destroyed by the Grigari, Picard survived. By 2399, Picard was stricken with Irumodic Syndrome, and would occasionally do such things as speak to nobody (although he claimed to be speaking to Q), or mistake other officers for his old crew (for example, he called Nog "Will" and Jake Sisko "Geordi"). It is implied that he married Beverly Crusher, as he comments to Julian Bashir that, between Bashir and Leonard McCoy, he was always worried that his wife would leave him for one of her heroes. Picard headed up a task force to build a timeship known as the USS Phoenix to try and undo the timeline. However, the Phoenix was destroyed before it could accomplish its mission, but Picard, Nog, and Vash traveled back in time twenty-five thousand years, where they became three Bajoran mystics who wrote prophecies of the events they had experienced; it is also implied that Vash and the elder Picard were married. The entire timeline was later reset thanks to the actions of Benjamin Sisko.
The novel Death in Winter by Michael Jan Friedman told of Picard beginning a romantic relationship with Dr. Beverly Crusher after rescuing her from a planet under Romulan control. A subsequent book, Greater than the Sum, by Christopher L. Bennett, portrayed them as married and expecting a child. The later Paths of Disharmony, by Dayton Ward, shows them with a son, René.
The comic book series Star Trek: Countdown, a tie-in to the 2009 Star Trek film, depicted Picard as having left Starfleet by 2387 to become the Federation Ambassador to Vulcan; with Data, resurrected in B-4's body, succeeding him as captain of the Enterprise-E. When the Enterprise arrived at Vulcan, with the Romulan mining vessel Narada in tow, Picard arranged so that the Vulcan High Council would put aside their prejudices and allow Spock to make his case regarding the Hobus supernova. Despite their best efforts, the Council could not be convinced to give the red matter to the Romulans. After Nero had set off, Hobus erupted with the shockwave of the detonation threatening to destroy Earth and Vulcan in a matter of weeks. After Geordi had been called on and the Jellyfish procured as a vessel to launch the red matter, Picard received several Starfleet reports of ships from all the major galactic powers being destroyed when they neared Romulan space. Suspecting Nero, Picard contacted Worf and requested he intercept the madman with his fleet. When the Jellyfish was ready for launch, Picard boarded the Enterprise to join Worf's fleet. Upon arrival, they found the Narada to have been augmented with Borg technology, the Klingon fleet in pieces and Worf near death. Nero offered to return Worf to them, provided they lowered their shields. Though Picard convinced Data to do so, the Enterprise was crippled as a result, leaving her unable to pursue the Narada. Once repairs were complete, the Enterprise arrived to a collapsing singularity with no sign of Spock or Nero. Concluding that Spock had always known his journey would end like this, Picard led the crew in mourning their departed friend.
The comic miniseries Star Trek: Spock: Reflections established that after the events of Star Trek Generations, Picard sent a message to Spock explaining how Kirk did not die on the Enterprise-B, but was pulled into the Nexus and how he left it to help Picard defeat Soran from killing 200 million people in order to re-enter the Nexus and in the process, Kirk was killed while saving Picard and millions of others. Since Kirk was already thought dead, and explaining the nature of the Nexus to Starfleet would be difficult, Picard buried Kirk on Veridian III where he gave his life to save millions. Nonetheless, he felt Spock should know of Kirk's fate. Picard met with Spock a year later at the Kirk family farm in Iowa where he realized Spock had traveled to Veridian III to retrieve Kirk's body and brought him back home to Earth. Spock explained how Kirk did the same for him, at a terrible cost and that he needed to be equal to Kirk's sacrifice. Picard then tells Spock that he would be welcomed to return to Starfleet duty, in any capacity, but Spock planned to return to Romulus to continue his work. Picard asks whether arrangements can be made to make Spock's presence there official, but Spock declined, saying he has always led "a life of solitude and duty". As Spock remembers how he once worked with remarkable friends and comrades, he tells Picard to treasure those times in his own life, since they will someday end. They exchange the Vulcan salute and Picard walks away, but turned back to see Spock still standing quietly by his friend's grave.
Picard returned in the Star Trek: Ongoing story arc The Q Gambit. Beginning shortly after the events of Countdown, Picard is visited by Q, who informed him that Spock still lived, and that the black hole actually sent him into an alternate reality. When Q attempted to discuss this timeline, Picard cut him off, believing that the various timelines should remain separate from one another. Annoyed, Q reveals he had come for Picard's counsel as Spock had set off a chain of events that would doom that timeline. But since the former captain was uninterested, Q took his leave for the other timeline despite Picard's attempt to call him back. Picard reappeared at the end of the arc where Q returned, now enveloped by the energies of a Prophet. Flatly, Picard said he didn't want to know.
- Jean-Luc Picard at StarTrek.com, the official Star Trek website
- Jean-Luc Picard at Wikipedia
- Jean-Luc Picard at Wikiquote
- Jean-Luc Picard at Memory Beta, the wiki for licensed Star Trek works
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