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Star Trek: Prodigy is an animated series that premiered on 28 October 2021, first on the streaming service Paramount+, then on Nickelodeon,[1] a conglomerate sister broadcasting channel. It is the ninth Star Trek spin-off and the third animated Star Trek series, following Star Trek: The Animated Series and Star Trek: Lower Decks. Unlike the previous animated series, this is the first to be rendered entirely with computer-generated imaging and 3D modeling. Previously, the Star Trek: Short Treks episode "The Girl Who Made the Stars" was produced in a similar fashion. Two seasons were produced before the series' cancellation on 23 June 2023.

Alex Kurtzman stated that unlike Lower Decks, Prodigy will be kid-focused with an "entirely different perspective and an entirely different tone," adding, "What's exciting about it is not only looking at each animated series as what's the different tone, but what's the different technology we can apply to these things so that visually they're entirely different?" [7]

In February 2019, it was announced Nickelodeon had entered talks to air the show, and Trollhunters writers and executive producers Kevin and Dan Hageman had boarded the project. [8]

On 24 April 2019, it was revealed that the series would indeed air (but not debut) on Nickelodeon and focus on a group of lawless teenage characters finding a derelict Starfleet ship which they use to "search for adventure, meaning and salvation." [9]

In May 2019, CBS filed trademarks for the titles "Star Trek: Section 31" and "Star Trek: Prodigy", with posts on Reddit later in the year attaching the Prodigy title to the second animated series. [10]

On 23 July 2020, it was revealed that the show would, in fact, be named Star Trek: Prodigy, and that it would air on Nickelodeon in 2021. [11] [12] The premiere episode did air on the channel on 17 December 2021, but on that occasion it was an one-time-only affair. [13] It was eventually announced that the first ten episodes (parts 1 and 2) would belatedly air regularly on a repetitive basis on the broadcaster in the home market one year later, starting on 8 July 2022. [14]

In 2022, Prodigy's first season was nominated for "Outstanding Animated Series" in the inaugural Children’s & Family Emmy Awards, and won the Emmy for "Outstanding Individual Achievement in Production Design." [15]

In 2023, Prodigy's first season was nominated for a Television Critics Association Award in "Outstanding Achievement in Family Programming," a category with both animated and live action content intended for family and young adult audiences. [16] It was also nominated for another Children's & Family Emmy Award for "Outstanding Sound Design." [17]

Opening credits

The opening title sequence for Star Trek: Prodigy was unveiled on 31 August 2021, with theme by Michael Giacchino. [18]

Main cast

Starring

And

Recurring characters

Episode list

Season 1

PRO Season 1, 20 episodes:

Title Episode Production number Stardate US release date
Part 1
"Lost and Found" 1x01/02 101/102 Unknown 2021-10-28
"Starstruck" 1x03 103 Unknown 2021-11-04
"Dream Catcher" 1x04 104 Unknown 2021-11-11
"Terror Firma" 1x05 105 Unknown 2021-11-18
Hiatus for DIS Season 4, part 1
Part 2
"Kobayashi" 1x06 106 Unknown 2022-01-06
"First Con-tact" 1x07 107 Unknown 2022-01-13
"Time Amok" 1x08 108 607125.6 2022-01-20
"A Moral Star, Part 1" 1x09 109 Unknown 2022-01-27
"A Moral Star, Part 2" 1x10 110 61103.1 2022-02-03
Hiatus for DIS Season 4, part 2, PIC Season 2, SNW Season 1, and LD Season 3
Part 3
"Asylum" 1x11 111 61209.5 2022-10-27
"Let Sleeping Borg Lie" 1x12 112 61284.3 2022-11-03
"All the World's a Stage" 1x13 113 61296.9 2022-11-10
"Crossroads" 1x14 114 61302.7 2022-11-17
"Masquerade" 1x15 115 Unknown 2022-11-24
"Preludes" 1x16 116 Unknown 2022-12-01
"Ghost in the Machine" 1x17 117 Unknown 2022-12-08
"Mindwalk" 1x18 118 Unknown 2022-12-15
"Supernova, Part 1" 1x19 119 Unknown 2022-12-22
"Supernova, Part 2" 1x20 120 Unknown 2022-12-29

Season 2

PRO Season 2, 20 episodes:

Title Episode Production number Stardate US release date
"Into the Breach, Part I" 2x01 201 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Into the Breach, Part II" 2x02 202 61859.6 2024-07-01
"Who Saves the Saviors" 2x03 203 61860.1 2024-07-01
"Temporal Mechanics 101" 2x04 204 112152.1 2024-07-01
"Observer's Paradox" 2x05 205 61865.1 2024-07-01
"Imposter Syndrome" 2x06 206 Unknown 2024-07-01
"The Fast and the Curious" 2x07 207 61875.9 2024-07-01
"Is There in Beauty No Truth?" 2x08 208 61881.4 2024-07-01
"The Devourer of All Things, Part I" 2x09 209 61886.6 2024-07-01
"The Devourer of All Things, Part II" 2x10 210 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Last Flight of the Protostar, Part I" 2x11 211 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Last Flight of the Protostar, Part II" 2x12 212 61898.2 2024-07-01
"A Tribble Called Quest" 2x13 213 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Cracked Mirror" 2x14 214 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Ascension, Part I" 2x15 215 61945.4 2024-07-01
"Ascension, Part II" 2x16 216 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Brink" 2x17 217 62083.5 2024-07-01
"Touch of Grey" 2x18 218 62091.1 2024-07-01
"Ouroboros, Part I" 2x19 219 Unknown 2024-07-01
"Ouroboros, Part II" 2x20 220 62314.8 2024-07-01

About

From Paramount+
Developed by Emmy® Award-winners Kevin and Dan Hageman (Trollhunters and Ninjago) the CG-animated series Star Trek: Prodigy is the first Star Trek series aimed at younger audiences and will follow a motley crew of young aliens who must figure out how to work together while navigating a greater galaxy, in search for a better future. These six young outcasts know nothing about the ship they have commandeered – a first in the history of the Star Trek Franchise – but over the course of their adventures together, they will each be introduced to Starfleet and the ideals it represents. [19]

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.
From Nickelodeon
Star Trek: Prodigy begins in deep space, where our six young heroes are detainees at a mining colony overseen by the mysterious Diviner. When assigned to work deep in the core of the colony, they discover the derelict Starfleet ship, the USS Protostar, hidden within the asteroid. This inexperienced crew launch a harrowing getaway aboard the starship with guidance from the ship's holographic computer assistant, Janeway. Together the escapees learn that the ship came from a far-off alliance of peaceful galactic explorers known as the Federation. They resolve to set a course for Starfleet, but the Diviner is hot on their trails. Their journey takes them on a wild adventure where they encounter strange new life and civilizations, learn about Starfleet's ideals, and hope to find a better future for themselves on the far side of the galaxy. [20]

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.

Development

In July 2019, the Hagemans announced the full writers' room for the show. [21] Among those revealed to be writing the series are Trollhunters writer-producers Aaron Waltke and Chad Quandt, The 100 writer-producers Shawna Benson and Julie Benson, Black Sails writer Lisa Boyd, Shades of Blue writer Nikhil Jayaram, and Diandra Pendleton-Thompson.

In October 2019, Kurtzman said that this series will be animated in a digital 3D style, like Ninjago or Trollhunters, as opposed to the more "cartoon" look of Star Trek: Lower Decks. He also confirmed that the series had been picked up for a two-season order, and that a title had been chosen for the series, but he was not yet ready to reveal it. [22]

In the same interview, Heather Kadin said that, due to the time-consuming process of 3D animation, the series would likely air later than 2021. Kadin also emphasized that the Hagemans' writing style will be accessible to kids without patronizing them or alienating their parents:

"The reason we went to the Hagemans is because if you've seen their work, you know that they're not writing "Muppet Babies". It's not "Little Spock and Little Kirk." It's not playing down [to viewers] that way."

"Even [with] their characters in Ninjago – they are teenagers – I was able to watch that with my kids and they write with a very epic quality. They tell stories the way we tell stories in live action: serialized, turning over cards…"

"I think it will be a great way for fans to introduce the franchise to their kids, and for new fans to be formed, because it's such a big franchise, [it can be hard] to get into as a kid." [23]

In an October 2020 interview with Trek Report, producer and writer Aaron Waltke said that Prodigy aims to bridge the gap between old and new iterations of the Star Trek franchise, with a series that strikes a tone of hope and idealism. [24]

"It's been exhilarating to make a series that honors classic Trek for legacy fans like myself, but also provides an entry point for new audiences to be introduced to the world of the Federation and its aspirations for an idealistic future, even when facing adversity. Writing the return of our beloved Voyager captain feels oddly iconic, like a homecoming for me. And we hope to create something both young and old can watch together… just as I once did with my dad all those many years ago." [25]

In February 2021, it was announced that Prodigy would debut on Paramount+ in 2021. An image of the alien bridge crew was also released. [26]

On First Contact Day in April 2021, the Hagemans revealed that the series will be set in the Delta Quadrant in 2383. They also revealed an image of Captain Janeway as she will appear in the series, and explained that the character will appear as an emergency training hologram on board the starship. A new summary of the series' premise was also released:

Prodigy "will follow a motley crew of young aliens who must figure out how to work together while navigating a greater galaxy, in search for a better future. These six young outcasts know nothing about the ship they have commandeered – a first in the history of the Star Trek Franchise – but over the course of their adventures together, they will each be introduced to Starfleet and the ideals it represents." [27]

In May 2021, more details about the cast were released, with the main voice cast revealed. [28]

On 23 July 2021, a teaser trailer was released during the Paramount+ Star Trek Comic-Con@Home panel, revealing the first animated footage of the series along with the first look and name of the vessel, the USS Protostar. [29]

The series' opening title sequence was publicly released on 31 August 2021, as part of a Paramount+ presentation to the Television Critics Association. This presentation also confirmed that the series' theme music had been composed by Michael Giacchino, and the music for the series would be composed by Nami Melumad. [30]

On 28 October 2021, the series two-part pilot "Lost and Found" premiered on Paramount+. A total of ten episodes aired intermittently until 3 February 2022.

On 27 October 2022, the remaining ten episodes of Season One began to air weekly.

Cancellation and pick-up

On 23 June 2023, Prodigy was cancelled by Paramount+. While Season 2 was allowed to finish post-production, it, along with the series as a whole, would be sold to any interested third-party outsider. [31] The series removal from Paramount+ was affected three days later, on 26 June 2023. [32] The series did not to return to Nickelodeon.[2]

Paramount did not provide a clear reason for the unexpected cancellation. News sites such as TrekMovie.com, ScreenRant, and Inverse suggested that the cancellation was motivated by cost-cutting measures and tax write-offs, whereas Paramount itself had intimated in a statement to TrekMovie.com that it was part of clearing the way of the upcoming merger of Paramount+ with Showtime by "refining our content offering to deliver the best streaming experience for subscribers". Paramount concurrently assured TrekMovie.com that it remained stoutly "invested in growing the Star Trek franchise". [33] [34] [35]

On 21 July 2023, co-executive producer Aaron Waltke announced on his Twitter account that the entire first season had become available for digital purchase at digital vendors like Prime Video, ITunes Store, Google, and others. Until then, only the first ten episodes had been available, in tandem with the physical PRO Season 1, Volume 1 DVD and Blu-ray home video format releases. [36] A run on the DVD and Blu-ray stocks still available at retailers at the time of the cancellation announcement caused them to sell out quickly in the home market. [37]

The fanbase also tried to organize an online campaign to save the series. [38][3] On 24 August 2023, in an effort to find the show another home, a fan raised US$1,200 on GoFundMe to have an airplane tow a banner reading, "#SAVE STAR TREK PRODIGY" over the Los Angeles offices of streaming services Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. [39] A drawing with the same hashtag is set to be among the items going to space on a Blue Origin (part of the empire of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos) flight. [40]

Kevin Hageman expressed in an interview that his desire was to see a third season come to fruition, that will eventually lead up to an animated film series. [41]

On 11 October 2023, it was Netflix that announced that they had picked up Prodigy, with season two set to premiere on 1 July 2024, [42] after season one had debuted on the streaming service later in 2023 on 25 December. [43] [44] If renewed, Netflix would pay for and license future seasons.[4] The second season was also picked up by streaming service SkyShowtime. [45]

On 22 March 2024, the series unexpectedly debuted in France on the public television service France.TV as well as on AppleTV+ France, ahead of the Netflix release. [46]After some initial confusion, Dan and Kevin Hageman apologized for an "unfortunate miscommunication". [47] [48] [49]

On 1 July 2024, Season Two debuted on Netflix, where it entered the Netflix Top 10 internationally.[5] Afterwards, it was announced that Prodigy would lead the CBS lineup at San Diego Comic Con with a screening and Q&A panel with Kate Mulgrew and Brett Gray in attendance.[6]

Promotion

Products

In June 2019, Eaglemoss/Hero Collector's project manager Ben Robinson indicated that the company would manufacture starship miniatures from this series, [50] though that intent was thwarted by the company's bankruptcy on 5 August 2022.

On 13 July 2021, ViacomCBS Consumer Products and Playmates Toys jointly announced that the latter had acquired new licensing for "action figures, vehicles and ships, role play and other toy categories," and slated the first of these products for retail release in 2022. Among other Star Trek series and films, this licensing encompasses Star Trek: Prodigy, Star Trek: Lower Decks, Star Trek: Discovery, and Star Trek: Picard. [51]

On 18 August 2022, it was announced that two new tie-in books, Supernova (also the title of a video game releasing in October 2022) and A Dangerous Trade would be released on 17 January 2023. [52]

Related topics

Media

Footnotes

  1. The show did however premiere on some foreign Nickelodeon subsidiaries where Paramount+ was not (yet) available. One such market concerned the Netherlands and Flanders, where the in the Dutch language dubbed version of the show debuted for an one-time run on the local Nickelodeon Benelux channel on 18 April 2022, albeit the first ten episodes (parts 1 and 2) only. [1] Repetitive regular airing of the entire first season started on 31 October 2022 in support of the local Paramount+ encompassing SkyShowtime which had been launched in the country six days earlier, and where Prodigy was included in its startup content catalog.
  2. Star Trek Prodigy title card, SkyShowtime (Netherlands)

    Dutch SkyShowtime Prodigy title card, still available for streaming pursuant its formal removal from the franchise

    While removed from all other conglomerate-owned platforms, there was one on which Prodigy's first season remained available for streaming in its entirety – constituting a deviation in the policies Paramount had decided upon; the by the conglomerate co-owned SkyShowtime streaming service, a Paramount+ spin-off which operated in large swaths of Europe. [2] It has either been overlooked by Paramount (in itself suggestive of a post-haste/ad-hoc nature of the cancellation decision) or the exception is indicative of a large autonomy of the service's management – which they had in effect already demonstrated with their unilateral refusal to have Discovery become part of the service's inaugural catalog. [3] In those European territories where Paramount+ was operating under its own name, such as the British Isles, Prodigy was indeed removed from its catalogs on 26 June. [4]
  3. An online Change.org worldwide "Save Star Trek Prodigy!" petition was initiated on 23 June 2023 by a "Trekkie" which managed to surpass 17,000 signatures in a couple of days. Still, after the initial rush, fervor slowed downed considerably as it took a further four months to double that number when the petition closed later that year on 11 October with the petition initiator declaring victory after the Netflix pickup had been made public by stating that the fan's voices "were heard". [5] Still, it is extremely unlikely that the "voices heard" had even played into the consideration of Netflix's decision to pick up the show as the very modest 34,000 signatories (less than 1/100th of a percent of the US populace alone, infinitesimal worldwide) is in today's US television/streaming landscape a number considered far too insignificant to even warrant a television production consideration, be it it for actual production or acquirement. It were cold, hard, completely fan-unrelated business considerations by the parties involved that had played a part in the show's cancellation, and pickup decisions with the petition in essence amounting to no more that an exercise in futility.
  4. There was very little doubt left, if any at all, that the franchise had no intent whatsoever to pay even a single penny more for Prodigy beyond the season two post-production completion, after they had taken their definitive leave of the series in their official statement, "Star Trek: Prodigy will not be returning for the previously announced second season. On behalf of everyone at Paramount+, Nickelodeon, and CBS Studios, we want to thank Kevin and Dan Hageman, Ben Hibon, Alex Kurtzman, and the Secret Hideout team, along with the fantastic cast and crew for all their hard work and dedication bringing the series to life." [6]
  5. https://trekmovie.com/2024/07/06/star-trek-prodigy-season-2-hits-netflix-top-10-internationally-discovery-season-5-on-nielsen-top-10/
  6. https://collider.com/ghosts-sdcc-panel-2024/

External links

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