Star Trek’s Battle of Wolf 359 may be Jean-Luc Picard’s biggest moment in franchise history.
Star Trek: Picard has re-opened the wound that was the Battle of Wolf 359. It was a moment in the Next Generation series that saw Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) lead the Borg in an all-out assault on the Federation starships. It ended up being a slaughter, with Picard, then known as Loctus of Borg, being not only the face of the attack but the key to it.
Having his Starfleet information pulled from him against his will after he was assimilated, The Borg were able to destroy ship after ship thanks to the intel that Picard had in his brain. He didn’t willingly give it up, but he still did in the end.
It was a huge moment for a lot of reasons and these are just three of them.
Three reasons why the Battle of Wolf 359 matters so much to Star Trek and Jean-Luc Picard
The greater impact on other characters
We saw in the pilot for Deep Space Nine and later in the series Picard, the impact that the Battle of Wolf 359 had on other characters in the Star Trek universe. We saw that while most of his crew sees Picard as a good man still, many don’t. Many blame Picard for allowing himself to be abducted by the Borg and for being the front man in the assault. We don’t get to see the larger ramifications of one’s actions that often, so seeing this play out was interesting.
Jean-Luc Picard as a villain
While he wasn’t a villain of his own free will, it was still the first time we saw the main character of a Star Trek franchise become the main villain for any reason. Picard is largely seen as one of the most popular characters in the franchise’s history and so getting him as a villain for a few episodes was a neat experience.
The behind the scene implications
What often gets forgotten about when we talk about the Battle of World 359 and the Best of Both Worlds two-part event, was that it all came about as a way to write Patrick Stewart off the show. Stewart wasn’t sure about continuing on with the show and they came up with the abduction of Picard as a way to write him off should he not renew his contract. The Battle of Wolf 359 would’ve then been completely different, as had Stewart left the show, the fourth season premiere would’ve gone much differently. Which includes, but wouldn’t have been limited to, how the Battle of Worlf 359 played out.